Not later than 90 days after December 21, 2004, the executive committee of the Advisory Board shall establish, and appoint the initial members of, a permanent specialty crops committee that will be responsible for studying the scope and effectiveness of research, extension, and economics programs affecting the specialty crop industry.
Individuals who are not members of the Advisory Board may be appointed as members of the specialty crops committee. Members of the specialty crops committee shall serve at the discretion of the executive committee.
(c) Annual committee report
Not later than 180 days after the establishment of the specialty crops committee, and annually thereafter, the specialty crops committee shall submit to the Advisory Board a report containing the findings of its study under subsection (a) of this section. The specialty crops committee shall include in each report recommendations regarding the following:
(1)Measures designed to improve the efficiency, productivity, and profitability of specialty crop production in the United States.
(2)Measures designed to improve competitiveness in research, extension, and economics programs affecting the specialty crop industry.
(3)Programs that would—
(A)enhance the quality and shelf-life of fresh fruits and vegetables, including their taste and appearance;
(B)develop new crop protection tools and expand the applicability and cost-effectiveness of integrated pest management;
(C)prevent the introduction of foreign invasive pests and diseases;
(D)develop new products and new uses of specialty crops;
(E)develop new and improved marketing tools for specialty crops;
(F)enhance food safety regarding specialty crops;
(G)improve mechanization of production practices; and
(H)enhance irrigation techniques used in specialty crop production.
(4)Analyses of changes in macroeconomic conditions, technologies, and policies on specialty crop production and consumption, with particular focus on the effect of those changes on the financial stability of producers.
(5)Development of data that provide applied information useful to specialty crop growers, their associations, and other interested beneficiaries in evaluating that industry from a regional and national perspective.
(d) Consideration by Secretary
In preparing the annual budget recommendations for the Department of Agriculture, the Secretary shall take into consideration those findings and recommendations contained in the most-recent report of the specialty crops committee that are adopted by the Advisory Board.
(e) Annual report by Secretary
In the budget material submitted to Congress by the Secretary in connection with the budget submitted pursuant to section
1105 of title
31 for a fiscal year, the Secretary shall include a report describing how the Secretary addressed each recommendation of the specialty crops committee described in subsection (d) of this section.
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