On April 25, 2017, President Trump issued the Presidential Executive Order on Promoting Agriculture and Rural Prosperity in America.

The Executive Order established the Interagency Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity that will identify legislative, regulatory, and policy changes to promote in rural American agriculture, such as economic development, job growth, and infrastructure improvement. The Task Force will be chaired by the Secretary of Agriculture.

The Executive Order directs the Task Force to report back to the President in 180 days recommending legislative, regulatory, or policy changes such as those that would:

  • remove obstacles to economic prosperity and the quality of life in rural America;
  • progress innovation and technology for agricultural production and long-standing, sustainable rural development;
  • bolster and expand educational advancement and opportunities for students in these rural communities;
  • strengthen the State, local, and tribal agencies that implement rural economic development and agricultural and environmental programs to better fit these programs to relevant region-based developments;
  • mandate that executive departments and agencies rely on leading science and methods available when reviewing or approving crop protection tools; and
  • advance food safety and ensure that regulations and policies implementing Federal food safety laws are grounded in science.

The Executive Order also directs the Task Force to comply with earlier executive orders, such as the Presidential Executive Order on Reducing Regulation and Controlling Regulatory Costs, which states that “for every one new regulation issued, at least two prior regulations be identified for elimination.” Industry predicts that the Task Force will focus on areas such as biotechnology, including pesticide approvals, and regulation regarding genetically modified organisms.  While the details regarding the changes that the Task Force recommends to President Trump are still outstanding, the Health Law Pulse will follow these developments closely.