Bill summaries are authored by CRS.

Shown Here:
Passed House amended (08/01/1990)

Food and Agricultural Resources Act of 1990 - Title I: Cotton - Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to set forth the loan rates, target prices, disaster payments, and acreage limitation and land diversion programs for the 1991 through 1995 crops of upland cotton.

Title II: Sugar - Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to set forth price supports and marketing allotments for the 1991 through 1995 crops of sugar beets and sugarcane.

Authorizes the President to establish for any quota year beginning after September 30, 1990, a tariff rate quota on sugars, syrups, and molasses.

Title III: Rice - Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to set forth loan rates, target prices, disaster payments, and acreage limitation and land diversion programs for the 1991 through 1995 crops of rice.

Title IV: Dairy - Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to set forth the milk price support and inventory management programs for calendar years 1991 through 1995.

Amends the Packers and Stockyards Act, 1921 to require milk handlers to hold all milk purchased or received, all milk inventories, and all receivables in trust for the benefit of all unpaid milk producers or handlers until full payment is received.

Title V: Wool and Mohair - Amends the National Wool Act of 1954 to extend the price support program for wool and mohair through 1995.

Title VI: Honey - Beekeeping Industry Stabilization Act of 1990 - Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to set forth the price support for the 1991 through 1995 crops of honey.

Honey Research, Promotion, and Consumer Information Act Amendments of 1990 - Amends the Honey Research, Promotion, and Consumer Information Act with respect to Honey Board membership, honey producer assessments, and marketing order referenda.

Title VII: Oilseeds - Sets forth the price supports for the 1991 through 1995 crops of oilseeds, including soybeans, sunflower, canola, rapeseed, safflower, flaxseed, and mustard seed.

Soybean Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Act - Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to issue soybean marketing orders. Requires one such order to establish a United Soybean Board to administer such marketing orders. Provides for producer referenda regarding such orders. Authorizes appropriations.

Title VIII: Peanuts - Amends the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1938 and the Agricultural Act of 1949 to provide for the national poundage quota, the farm poundage quota, and marketing and price supports for the 1991 through 1995 crops of peanuts.

Title IX: Wheat - Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to set forth loan rates, target prices, disaster payments, and the acreage limitation and land diversion programs for the 1991 through 1995 crops of wheat.

Title X: Feed Grains - Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to set forth loan rates, target prices, disaster payments, and the acreage limitation and land diversion programs for the 1991 through 1995 crops of feed grains.

Title XI: General Commodity Provisions - Amends the Food Security Act of 1985 to: (1) extend through 1995 certain commodity payment limitations; and (2) provide for multi-year farm program contract payments.

Amends the Agricultural Act of 1949 to: (1) provide for advance deficiency and diversion payments for the 1991 through 1995 crops of wheat, feed grains, upland cotton, and rice; (2) set forth Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) sales price restrictions for the 1991 through 1995 crops of wheat and feed grains; (3) require the CCC to establish procedures for disposal of stocks; and (4) revise the acreage base and program yield system for the 1991 through 1995 crops of wheat, feed grains, upland cotton, and rice.

Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to: (1) conduct annual assessments of the financial impact of the price support levels established for various crops; (2) survey commodity producers during 1991 about their preference for the redistribution of any crop acreage bases on their farms; (3) permit producers to meet acreage limitation or set-aside requirements by idling end rows; and (4) establish a program to provide incentives for reservoir construction in counties with severe groundwater depletion.

Permits a producer to build a surface reservoir on land which is part of a flexible farm acreage base.

Title XII: Agricultural Trade and Assistance - Subtitle A: Public Law 480 and Related Programs - Mickey Leland Food for Peace Act - Amends the Agricultural Trade Development and Assistance Act of 1954 to extend its authorities through FY 1995. Revises the sales program and the use of local currency payments.

Authorizes the President to forgive the dollar sales debt of a least-developed country to the CCC in certain circumstances. Prohibits new credit to such a country for two years after forgiveness, unless the President justifies new credit assistance to the Congress.

Authorizes the President to enter into an agreement with an eligible Latin American or Caribbean country to forgive such country's dollar sales debt to the CCC if the country issues and deposits into a specified trust a bond for periodic payments to the trust to finance protective and restorative measures to environmentally critical land, habitat, or other natural resources in such country. Requires such a country to have adopted a strong economic reform program and to pursue comprehensive investment reforms with the Inter-American Development Bank.

Authorizes the President to enter into an agreement with an eligible Latin American or Caribbean country operating under a heavy debt burden to reduce sales debt obligations to the CCC if the country makes its interest payments to a trust which shall pay indigenous non-governmental entities for agricultural development and poverty reduction projects.

Requires countries receiving assistance to undertake self-help measures for economic development purposes through specified activities.

Revises the levels of minimum commodity assistance for FY 1991 through 1995 for famine relief and other food assistance programs.

Establishes a Food Aid Advisory Group to advise the President on food aid programs, especially on proposed regulations, handbooks, and guidelines.

Revises the Food for Development and the Farmer-to-Farmer programs.

Prohibits the President from agreeing to provide agricultural commodities for distribution by the military forces of any government (or by an insurgent group), except in specified circumstances.

Prohibits the use of local currency under food aid programs for abortions.

Requires the Comptroller General to evaluate assistance programs every two years.

Amends the Food for Progress Act of 1985 to add certain conflict-of-interest, competitive, and nondiscrimination requirements.

Requires specified reports to the Congress.

Subtitle B: Export Promotion - Amends the Agricultural Trade Act of 1978 to revise Federal export promotion programs. Amends the Food for Peace Act of 1966 and the Food Security Act of 1985 to revise export credit programs.

Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a Market Development Task Force to: (1) help develop long-term agricultural trade strategy; and (2) coordinate and disseminate information, and provide advice and education to specified entities, on agricultural export markets and domestic agricultural trade programs.

Prohibits making export credit guarantees and other export promotion measures available to countries which: (1) demonstrate lack of respect for universally recognized human rights; (2) acquire chemical, biological, or nuclear weapons without forswearing first use of them or committing themselves to abide by certain Geneva Protocols for prohibition of their use; or (3) support international terrorism.

Subtitle C: Agricultural Trade With and Fellowships for Emerging Democracies and Middle-Income Countries - Directs the CCC for each of FY 1991 through 1995 to make available export credit guarantees, guarantee financing, and agricultural expertise to emerging democracies.

Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a fellowship program for middle-income countries and emerging democracies to provide fellowships for persons to study agriculture in the United States.

Subtitle D: Studies, Reports, and Other Provisions - Directs the Secretary to study: (1) the effects on the United States agricultural economy of the creation of a North American free trade area, including a United States-Mexico free trade area; (2) the promotion and participation of wood, wood products, fish, and fish products in certain Federal export promotion programs; (3) the impact of the current agricultural transportation situation on prices received by producers and costs to consumers, and on the U.S. ability to fulfill export goals and expand foreign markets for domestic commodities; (4) the competitive factors affecting the domestic red tart cherry industry, including imports; and (5) the likely material consequence of the suspension or termination of authority to limit imports (but only if such authority is suspended or terminated). Requires reports to the Congress or specified congressional committees.

Denounces the European Community's (E.C.'s): (1) nontransparent process of setting standards and requirements for agricultural commodities and products; and (2) refusal to guarantee that U.S. exporters of such commodities and products will be able to show compliance with such standards and requirements by using U.S. laboratories or through self-certification. Deplores the adverse consequences of E.C. standards and testing policies on the bilateral agricultural trade relationship between the United States and the E.C. Urges the President to use all available means to bring about changes in such standards and policies that will protect U.S. access to the E.C. market for agricultural commodities and products.

Directs the Foreign Agricultural Service to revise evaluation reports for its Foreign Service officers to require assessment of an officer's foreign language proficiency. Requires that promotion precedence be given to officers who have achieved the General Professional Speaking Proficiency level in one or more languages.

Prohibits the use of export promotion programs to assist in the export of tobacco products.

Subtitle E: Foreign Affairs Provision - Authorizes the President to provide economic assistance to a country which, because of its coca production, is a major illicit drug producing country in order to promote the production, processing, or marketing of alternative products which can be economically produced in such country.

Subtitle F: Effective Dates and Conforming Changes - Sets forth the effective date of this title.

Subtitle G: Pesticide Export Reform - Pesticide Export Reform Act of 1990 - Amends the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act with respect to exported pesticides.

Requires the General Accounting Office to study the export of unregistered pesticides.

Title XIII: Research - Subtitle A: Extensions and Changes to Existing Programs - Amends the Research Facilities Act and the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 to revise and extend through FY 1995 specified research programs and advisory boards.

Establishes a new grant program to upgrade agricultural and food sciences facilities at 1890 land-grant colleges, including Tuskegee University.

Authorizes the Secretary of Agriculture to make competitive grants to five national research and training centennial centers at 1890 land-grant colleges, each center devoted to a different specified area of research and training. Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Authorizes the Secretary to make grants for aquaculture research centers at specified universities. Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Directs the Secretary to allocate competitive, special, and facilities grants to high priority basic and applied research in specified areas, including plant and animal systems, nutrition, natural resources, engineering, products, and processes.

Subtitle B: Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program - Directs the Secretary to conduct research and extension projects on sustainable farm management systems. Requires the Secretary to establish a Federal-State matching-grant program to assist in creation or enhancement of similar State programs.

Directs the Secretary to establish a research and education program to enhance research into environmentally sound farming operations, practices, and systems that optimize crop and livestock production potential.

Requires the Secretary to develop handbooks and technical guides appropriate for describing sustainable agriculture production and related integrated systems.

Directs the Secretary to establish a program for training appropriate field office personnel in practices developed under this subtitle.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Subtitle C: National Genetics Resources Program - Directs the Secretary to provide for a National Genetic Resources Program.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Subtitle D: National Agricultural Library - Establishes the National Agricultural Library in the USDA. Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Subtitle E: National Agricultural Weather Information System - National Agricultural Weather Information System Act of 1990 - Directs the Secretary to establish in the USDA an Agricultural Weather Office to plan and administer a National Agricultural Weather Information System. Provides for competitive grants for atmospheric and climatological research, as well as grants to States for State agricultural weather information systems.

Requires the Secretary to establish an Advisory Board on Agricultural Weather.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Subtitle F: Plant and Animal Pest and Disease Control Program - Directs the Secretary, acting through the Assistant Secretary for Science and Education, to establish an Office of Integrated Pest Management, along with a technical advisory committee.

Requires the Secretary to: (1) undertake or assist in research into integrated pest management; (2) establish a data base on materials and methods of pest and disease control available to agricultural producers; (3) expand ongoing research and grant programs dealing with control of infestations of exotic pests; and (4) establish a research and education program on the biology and behavior of chinch bugs.

Subtitle G: Research Regarding the Production, Preparation, Processing, Handling, and Storage of Agricultural Products - Directs the Secretary to establish: (1) a research program into specified aspects of the production, preparation, processing, handling, and storage of agricultural products; (2) a committee to set research priorities; and (3) a research program on the impact on U.S. meat exports of allowing meat grading under the grading system of the country of final destination.

Subtitle H: National Institute for Alternative Agricultural Products - Alternative Agricultural Products Act of 1990 - Directs the Secretary to establish a National Institute for Alternative Agricultural Products, supervised by a National Alternative Agricultural Products Board, to provide financial assistance for research, development, and demonstration projects regarding alternative agricultural products, including commercialization projects. Requires the Board to establish between two and five Regional Centers. Establishes in the Treasury an Alternative Agricultural Products Technology Revolving Fund.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Subtitle I: Agriculture and Water Policy Coordination - Agriculture and Water Policy Coordination Act - Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995 to carry out this subtitle.

Makes the USDA responsible for developing educational programs, technical assistance, and research programs for users and dealers of agrichemicals with respect to: (1) the environmentally sound use, storage, and disposal of agrichemicals; and (2) the potential effects of agrichemicals on water.

Directs the Secretary of Agriculture to establish a water quality coordination program within each State involving specified Federal agencies and State agencies which choose to participate.

Establishes a water quality research program.

Directs the Secretary to provide for the research and development of nutrient management practices which sustain farm profitability and minimize or abate the negative effects of agricultural nitrogen and other crop nutrients on water quality.

Requires the Secretary, through the Director of the National Agricultural Library, to establish at the Library: (1) a repository of agriculture and water quality planning information; and (2) an interactive data base on State plans and programs.

Requires the Secretary to report to the Congress on measures necessary to develop an interactive, descriptive national data base to contain information on agricultural practices and water resources, to be located at the Library.

Directs the Secretary to formulate and carry out an experimental water quality enhancement program through agreements to assist farm and ranch owners and operators under which they shall implement approved water quality management plans.

Directs the Secretary to establish: (1) an environmental restoration program in the USDA to identify and assess releases of hazardous substances from USDA facilities; and (2) a grant program within the Cooperative State Research Service and the Agricultural Research to fund environmental assessment research on the introduction of genetically engineered organisms into the environment.

Directs the Secretary to appoint a Board of Pesticide Assessments and establish a Pesticide Impact Response Program.

Requires the Secretary to collect data on the use of pesticides to control pests and diseases of major crops and crops of dietary significance.

Requires the Secretary to direct the Extension Service to operate in each State a program to catalogue Federal, State and local regulations on the disposal of unused or unwanted agricultural chemicals and their containers.

Directs the Secretary, acting through specified USDA services, to study the frequency and types of agricultural accidents across the nation resulting in physical injury to farmers and employees.

Requires the Secretary to make competitive grants to specified entities to research plant genome mapping.

Directs the Secretary to establish: (1) a Compost Task Force to study processes for composting agricultural wastes; and (2) a research program to determine the presence of aflatoxin in the food and feed chains.

Directs the Secretary to establish a program to develop an agricultural communications network to disseminate cooperative extension programs, academic instruction in agriculture, and agricultural research. Provides for financial and technical assistance to participating institutions. Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Directs the Secretary, acting through the USDA Office of Transportation, to report to the Congress on the transportation to the farm of fertilizer, agricultural crop protection chemicals, and agricultural use hazardous materials such as fuel. Authorizes appropriations.

Directs the Secretary to provide at least two special grants to land-grant colleges and universities to study constraints on agricultural trade, and report the results to specified congressional committees.

Directs the Secretary to make competitive grants for mesquite and prickly pear research.

Directs the Secretary to make grants to establish national centers for agricultural product quality research.

Directs the Secretary to make grants to land-grant colleges and universities for immunoassay research.

Directs the Secretary to establish a program of competitive grants, to be administered by the Cooperative State Research Service, for specified rural development research.

Directs the Secretary to provide outreach and technical assistance through the Office of Advocacy and Enterprise to assist socially disadvantaged farmers to participate in programs under this Act. Authorizes appropriations.

Directs the Secretary to make research and extension grants available for the development of agricultural production and marketing systems that will service niche markets in nearby metropolitan areas. Authorizes appropriations.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 1992 to establish specified Agricultural Turkey Research Centers.

Directs the Secretary to establish a research program on the disease of scrapie in sheep and goats. Authorizes appropriations.

Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995 to the Agricultural Research Service to assist research in the field of population ecology of deer ticks and other insects and pests which transmit Lyme disease.

Directs the Secretary, through the Extension Service, to establish appropriate extension education programs on Indian reservations and tribal jurisdictions. Authorizes appropriations.

Directs the Extension Service to carry out a program of public education (with special emphasis on children and minorities) on the hazards of tobacco use and the advantages of quitting or not starting tobacco use. Authorizes appropriations for FY 1991 through 1995.

Title XIV: Fruits, Vegetables, and Marketing - Subtitle A: Fruits and Vegetables - Directs the Secretary to: (1) report to the Congress on the current state of the fruit and vegetable industry; and (2) implement a two-year pilot program during which perishable agricultural products are labeled or marked as to their country of origin.

Subtitle B: Marketing - Amends the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act of 1930 to authorize investment of Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act Fund reserves in insured or fully-collateralized interest-bearing accounts or Federal debt securities.

Amends the Agricultural Marketing Agreement Act of 1937 with respect to the enforcement of handler assessments.

Directs the Secretary to report to specified congressional committees on how the USDA might best work with and support the U.S. wine and winegrape industry.

Expresses the sense of the Congress with respect to the accountability to the Secretary and the Congress of producer research and promotion boards and councils.

Subtitle C: Commodity Promotion - Pecan Promotion and Research Act of 1990 - Directs the Secretary to issue pecan promotion and research plans, including one for establishment of a Pecan Marketing Board, which shall carry out programs under the plans. Authorizes appropriations.

Mushroom Promotion, Research, and Consumer Information Act of 1990 - Directs the Secretary to issue mushroom promotion, research, and consumer information plans, including one for establishment of a Mushroom Council, which shall carry out programs under the plans. Authorizes appropriations.

Potato Research and Promotion Act Amendments of 1990 - Amends the Potato Research and Promotion Act with respect to specified elements of potato research and promotion plans and implementation procedures. Prescribes a procedure for amendment of a plan upon request of a producer or producer organization.

Cotton Research and Promotion Act Amendments of 1990 - Amends the Cotton Research and Promotion Act with respect to specified elements of cotton research and promotion plans and implementation procedures.

Lime Research, Promotion, and Consumer Information Act of 1990 - Directs the Secretary to issue lime research, promotion, and consumer information orders, including one for establishment of a Lime Board, which shall carry out programs under the orders.

Requires that application to imports of commodity research and promotion programs be in a nondiscriminatory manner consistent with U.S. international obligations.

Subtitle D: Organic Certification Standards - Organic Foods Production Act of 1990 - Directs the Secretary to establish national minimum standards for producers and handlers of agricultural products that have been produced by organic methods. Sets forth compliance requirements as well as general requirements. Provides for State organic certification programs. Sets forth: (1) prohibited crop production practices and materials; and (2) required animal production practices and materials. Requires farmers seeking certification to submit organic farm plans. Sets forth accreditation requirements for Certifying Agents, providing for peer review.

Requires the Secretary to establish a National List of approved and prohibited substances that shall be included in the standards for organic production.

Title XV: State and Private Forestry - Amends the Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act of 1978 with respect to: (1) firefighting preparedness and mobilization assistance; and (2) forest pest control. Authorizes appropriations.

Directs the Secretary to provide financial assistance to eligible landowners who suffer destruction of 35 percent or more of a tree stand due to damaging weather, related condition, or wildfire.

Amends the Forest and Rangeland Renewable Resources Research Act of 1978 with respect to reforestation and recycling research. Authorizes appropriations.

Authorizes the Secretary to establish a Forest Reserve Program in cooperation with States in order to protect environmentally sensitive forest lands threatened by conversion to nonforest uses through the creation and administration of easements on such lands. Requires four pilot projects. Authorizes appropriations.

Authorizes the Secretary to: (1) continue support for the study of changing land ownership and management patterns in the northern forest lands of Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, and New York; and (2) conduct a study of the New York-New Jersey Highlands. Authorizes appropriations.

Amends the Cooperative Forestry Assistance Act of 1978 with respect to forest resources management improvement, rural forestry assistance, the Forest Resources Stewardship Program (creating an incentive program), and the reforestation program. Requires the Secretary to establish an intra-departmental State and private Forestry Coordinating Committee. Directs the Secretary to implement a program of education and technical assistance for urban and community forest resources. Directs the Secretary to establish a National Urban and Community Forestry Advisory Council, which shall prepare a National Urban and Community Forestry Action Plan. Authorizes appropriations.

Authorizes the President to designate a private nonprofit Foundation to receive a USDA grant to make grants to nonprofit organizations and local governments to promote voluntary tree planting. Authorizes appropriations.

Directs the President to establish a Commission on State and Private Forests to assess the status of State and private forests and their problems, as well as their potential contribution to the nation's renewable resource needs. Authorizes appropriations.

Directs the Secretary to establish a research, development, and application program for forests and rangelands of parts of Oregon and Washington, to be conducted by the Blue Mountain Natural Resource Institute.

Directs the Secretary to establish an International Forest Resources Institute, to be operated by the State University of New York College of Environmental Science and Forestry, to increase the competitive position of the forest industries of the northeastern United States as major producers of international forest products. Directs the Secretary to establish at the Forestry Sciences Laboratory of the U.S. Forest Service in Lincoln, Nebraska, a Semiarid Agroforestry Research, Development, and Demonstration Center, complete with a National Clearinghouse on Agroforestry Conservation and Promotion. Authorizes appropriations.

Title XVI: Conservation - Amends the Food Security Act of 1985 to revise the highly erodible land, wetland, and soil and water conservation programs, extending them through the 1995 crop years. Urges the Secretary to use specified existing programs to promote the retention and management of current forest lands, as well as reforestation of previously forested lands and afforestation of marginal agricultural lands.

Directs the Secretary to establish a natural resources loan program to encourage the alleviation of natural resource conservation problems that reduce the productive capacity of the nation's land and water resources or that cause degradation of environmental quality. Authorizes appropriations. Authorizes the Secretary to make or insure loans to farm owners or tenants for soil and water conservation and protection.

Directs the Secretary to establish in each State a Technical Committee to assist the Secretary in technical considerations related to implementing conservation programs under such Act.

Directs the Secretary, during the 1991 through 1995 crop years, to mount a voluntary incentive program through agreements to assist owners and operators of a farm in developing and implementing a water quality protection plan. Requires the Secretary to provide technical assistance to agricultural producers in developing and implementing such plans.

Requires the Secretary, during the 1991 through 1995 crop years, to mount a wetland and environmental easement program for acquisition of perpetual easements from willing owners to ensure continued long-term protection of environmentally sensitive lands or reduction in degradation of water quality through continued conservation and improvement of water and soil resources.

Requires the Secretary to report annually to specified congressional committees an evaluation of soil conservation programs and policies.

Establishes in the USDA an Office of Environmental Quality to assist the Secretary in developing environmental quality policies and implementation plans. Requires annual environmental quality reports to the Congress.

Directs the Secretary to establish, by regulation, a voluntary Integrated Farm Management Program Option designed to assist producers of agricultural commodities in adopting integrated, multi-year, site-specific farm management plans by reducing farm program barriers to resource stewardship practices and systems.

Requires the Secretary to report annually to specified congressional committees on the impact conservation plans are having on agriculture and water quality planning.

Amends the Soil Conservation and Domestic Allotment Act to authorize the Secretary to enter into agreements with producers on farms to provide 50 percent cost-sharing assistance for establishing short-term stands of soil-building legumes and legume-grass mixtures on harvested or reduced acres when applying a resource-conserving crop rotation, except when planted on acres on which farm payments are received.

Extends the Great Plains Conservation Program through FY 2001.

Amends the Federal Noxious Weed Act of 1974 to require each Federal agency responsible for Federal lands to establish an undesirable plants management program for such lands.

Directs the Secretary to establish a program to provide Federal guarantees and interest rate assistance for loans for an agricultural resource conservation program. Authorizes appropriations.

Title XVII: Food Stamp and Related Provisions - Mickey Leland Memorial Domestic Hunger Relief Act - Amends the Food Stamp Act of 1977 with respect to: (1) reducing childhood hunger; (2) promoting self-sufficiency; (3) simplifying program administration; (4) addressing hunger in rural America; (5) promoting access for the elderly and disabled; (6) revising program administration by State agencies; (7) revising commodity distribution programs; and (8) reauthorizing through FY 1995 the food stamp, commodity supplemental food, other food donation, and the Temporary Emergency Food Assistance programs.

Establishes a Commission on the Coordination of Family Support and Food Stamp Policies to study and report to the President and the Congress on administrative conflicts and inconsistences between the family support and food stamp programs and how they might be resolved and corrected.

Allocates appropriations for competitive grants to public and private nonprofit organizations to improve food stamp participation of rural Americans, minorities, the elderly, and the homeless.

Directs the Secretary to develop standards for initial approval of automated data processing and information retrieval systems for State agencies.

Establishes an Advisory Committee on Welfare Simplification and Coordination to study existing and recommend common or simplified food stamp, cash, medical, and housing programs.

Title XVIII: Improvement of the Agricultural Economy - Subtitle A: Grain Quality Improvements - Directs the Secretary to establish a USDA Committee on Grain Quality.

Amends the United States Grain Standards Act with respect to testing for grain purity.

Directs the Secretary to develop procedures for conducting commercial grain inspections resulting in price adjustments related to premiums and discounts for quality factors for the grain.

Subtitle B: Agricultural Cooperation and Development - Authorizes the Secretary to make grants to U.S. non-governmental organizations, colleges, and universities for purchase on the secondary market of discounted external commercial debt of a foreign government to be canceled under the terms of an agreement with that government as part of a debt for agricultural development exchange.

Subtitle C: Other Provisions - Provides for: (1) an agricultural assistance program for farmers with disabilities; and (2) emergency grants to assist low-income migrant and seasonal farmworkers. Authorizes appropriations.

Amends the Disaster Assistance Act of 1989 with respect to double cropping, exclusions from harvested quantities, and coverage for ornamentals and Valencia oranges. Requires the Secretary to mount a cost-share program to provide financial assistance to owners of private timber stands that were damaged in 1989 by Hurricane Hugo in order to encourage reestablishment of such stands.

Subtitle D: Report and Studies - Directs the Secretary to establish by regulation: (1) a system to measure the extent to which any reduction in the prices of agricultural commodities or products are passed through to the ultimate consumer; and (2) a system to inform the ultimate consumer of the approximate amount of money paid the agricultural producer for a particular commodity.

Directs the Comptroller General to study the concentration of the meat packing industry, and report to specified congressional committees.

Requires the Secretary to gather and publish monthly commodity reports from producers.

Farm Spouse Fairness and Equity Act - Amends the Food Security Act of 1985 to specify circumstances in which both spouses in a married couple shall be treated as separately and actively engaged in farming operations for the purpose of receiving farm program payments.

Subtitle E: Food Marketing Research - Agricultural Marketing Research and Reform Act of 1990 - Directs the Secretary to research: (1) the extent to which grade standards and other regulations governing cosmetic appearance affect pesticide use in the production of perishable commodities; and (2) the feasibility of consumer education programs regarding different practices in the production of perishable commodities, and the relationship between cosmetic appearance of such commodities and pesticide use.