Costa Pledges Commitment to 'Food for Peace' Program

Jul 10, 2019
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – At an event celebrating the 65th anniversary of Food for Peace, a program that uses American resources to help prevent and respond to chronic and acute hunger overseas, Congressman Jim Costa (CA-16) spoke about the importance of food security and the need to help the world’s most vulnerable populations, a major priority he fought for in the past three farm bills: 

“In the last year, Food for Peace reached approximately 76 million people in 59 countries, including 68 million people with emergency assistance and 8 million people with development assistance,” said Costa, chairman of the Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture and member of the House Foreign Affairs Committee. “The reasons why these millions of people face hunger and food insecurity are many; they are geopolitical, social, and environmental, but they all result in the same threat to the lives and livelihoods of the world’s most vulnerable. I will continue to fight for Food for Peace from my subcommittee chair, because I see the positive results that the program creates around the developing world.”

In 1954, President Eisenhower signed into law legislation that would eventually become known as the Food for Peace Act. As part of the 2018 Farm Bill, Congressman Costa voted to reauthorize the piece of legislation, which solidified the U.S. government’s continued, bipartisan commitment to reducing hunger, malnutrition and poverty around the world. Costa served on the conference committee that worked out the Farm Bill compromise.

The program provides aid to regions of the world in crisis, including Yemen, Honduras and Guatemala. In Yemen, which has the largest humanitarian emergency in the world with nearly 16 million people facing famine and the risk of death by starvation, Food for Peace provides emergency food assistance to nearly 53% of the country’s population, funding for UNICEF to provide for the treatment of children suffering from severe, acute malnutrition and nearly $119 million in 2019 to the UN World Food Program. In Central America, FFP help includes support for about 28,000 families in Guatemala and 11,500 individuals in Honduras to buy nutritious food