Major Successes & Current Priorities
Lobbying Activities and Successes
- Led effort in the 2008 Farm Bill to obtain $9 million in mandatory funding for USDA biobased product testing and labeling.
- Secured Farm Bill provisions to expedite implementation of the federal biobased program, particularly the biobased labeling program.
- The BPC coordinated evaluation of the proposed labeling program and crafted a unified industry response and comments to USDA.
- Supported Farm Bill language that promotes greater reporting and accounting of biobased product purchases by government agencies.
- Supported provisions that prohibit government agencies from requiring biobased manufacturers or vendors to provide more data than would be required from non-biobased companies.
- Secured provisions to designate intermediate ingredients and feedstocks that are or can be used to produce items (including complex products) that will be subject to the biobased purchasing preference. The Farm Bill now directs USDA to automatically list items composed of designated intermediate ingredients and feedstocks if the content of these ingredients exceeds 50% of the item.
- Worked with USDA Secretary Vilsack on contacts to other Obama Administration Cabinet members to urge their compliance with federal biobased programs.
- Supported White House Memorandum in 2012 that: directed agencies to increase purchases of biobased products over the next two years, added biobased purchasing to the Sustainability scorecard, directs a 50% increase in product categories designated by USDA for preferred purchasing, provided assistance to small businesses to improve the selling of biobased products and services to the government, and directed the Secretary of Agriculture to prepare a report on job creation and economic impact associated with the biobased products industry.
- Submitted comments on the proposed changes to the Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) for biobased products.
- Secured provisions that improve and expand the Biobased Market Program in the 2012 Farm Bill passed by the Senate, including an increase in mandatory funding, expansion of USDA outreach and promotional activities, and required designation and label eligibility for intermediates, complex, and finished products.
Current Areas of Work
- Develop and implement a comprehensive and pro-active legislative strategy to advance the interests of biobased manufacturers and their industry partners on implementation of the Biobased Market Program, promotion of biobased products, expansion of government procurement, research and development, education, and other federal and state biobased policies and incentives. An active and coordinated effort is needed to broaden the base of support and markets for biobased products.
- Provide regulatory analysis and input to federal agencies including USDA, GSA, and the White House Office of Procurement Policy, on biobased product issues.
- Maintain dialogue with Administration and Congressional policymakers regarding support for biobased products.
- Develop and implement an effective internal and external communications program to keep members informed on policy, regulatory and other issues and to support the legislative and regulatory agendas in Washington, DC and at the grassroots level.
- Work with other biobased stakeholders, including the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) and American Chemistry Council (ACC) to coordinate efforts on biobased policies and incentives and promotion of the biobased products.