USDA Commits to Purchase of Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic Wild-Caught Shrimp

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.) today welcomed a U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) commitment to purchase an additional $25 million in wild-caught shrimp that should benefit the Mississippi Gulf Coast.

The USDA on Thursday announced the purchase of Gulf of Mexico and South Atlantic wild-caught shrimp through its Section 32 Program for distribution to food banks and other nonprofit nutrition programs.  The Gulf Coast is a leading source of the shrimp caught for domestic consumption.

“The guaranteed purchase of Gulf shrimp will help support an industry that has been under added stress because of supply chain disruptions over the past year.  I hope this action by the U.S. Department of Agriculture will boost Mississippi shrimpers and processors as our economy gets back on track,” said Hyde-Smith, who serves on the Senate Agriculture Committee and Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee.

The $25 million shrimp purchase is authorized under Section 32 of the Agriculture Act of 1935.  Section 32 purchases support a broad variety of U.S. agriculture producers and provide USDA Food and Nutrition Service nutrition assistance programs with commodities for distribution.

Last year, Mississippi agriculture benefitted from the first-time USDA Section 32 Program shrimp purchase.  The program has also been used to purchase farm-raised catfish for nutrition assistance programs.

The shrimp buy is part of an overall $159.4 million Section 32 purchase of domestically produced seafood, fruits, legumes, and nuts for distribution to a variety of domestic food assistance programs, including charitable institutions.