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U.S. Rep. Ron Kind criticized Sonny Perdue, Secretary of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) for using taxpayer dollars to buy $5 million in pork products from a Brazilian-owned company. The pork was purchased using funds dedicated to the farm bailout program, which was created to help American farmers hurt by the President’s trade war.

Rep. Kind also called on Secretary Perdue to provide a comprehensive list of all foreign-owned companies that have received money from the bailout program, and to take action to ensure these programs are targeted to Wisconsin’s family farms.

“By sending a $5 million check to Brazilian pork producers, the USDA is rubbing salt in the wound for the thousands of Wisconsin family farmers caught up in the President’s trade war,” said Rep. Ron Kind. “I am calling on Secretary Perdue to immediately stop sending Wisconsinites’ money to Brazil, and provide a full list of any foreign-owned companies getting the assistance American farmers so badly need.”

In November of 2018, the USDA awarded Smithfield Foods, a Chinese-owned company, $240,000 in payments from funds intended to be used for the trade war bailout program. Smithfield Foods later rescinded the bid after public backlash. 

The ongoing partial government shutdown has stopped the distribution of bailout funds to Wisconsin farmers.

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