Addis Ababa, Ethiopia (30 April 2022)

The US government announced on April 27 that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) are taking measures to draw on the entire balance of the Bill Emerson Humanitarian Trust (BEHT) as part of the endeavor to provide $670 million in global food aid to nations suffering from food insecurity as a result of the Russo-Ukrainian war.

USAID will use the $282 million provided by the BEHT to purchase US food commodities to supplement existing emergency food operations in six countries suffering from severe food insecurity: Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan, and Yemen. The USDA will provide an additional $388 million in funding through the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) to encompass ocean transportation services, inland transportation, internal transport, shipment, and other related costs.

The BEHT is a special authority renamed for U.S. Congressman Bill Emerson in 1998 and reauthorized in the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, also known as the Farm Bill, that allows USAID’s Bureau for Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) to adapt to unexpected food crises abroad when other resources are insufficient. This is the first time the US government has used this emergency funding authority since 2014.


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