Report: Food For Peace Program Produces More Than 870 Iowa Jobs

Jun 17, 2010, 09:30 ET from USA Maritime

$31 million in earnings for transportation and maritime industries statewide

WASHINGTON, June 17 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The United States' principal international food aid program, Food for Peace (P.L. 480), helped create and sustain 871 jobs which resulted in $31 million in earnings in the state of Iowa in 2009. By delivering food aid to foreign countries, the maritime industry employs 11,500 in deep sea freight transportation and sustains more than 97,000 jobs in other parts of the U.S. economy, in occupations dealing with the handling, processing and transporting of commodities from farmers to U.S. and foreign ports, according to a report released today by Promar International and USA Maritime.

The report, "Impacts on the U.S. Economy of Shipping International Food Aid," provides a snapshot of output, earnings, and jobs produced through the Food for Peace program throughout the United States.

The leading states for economic impact from transporting food aid included Texas ($712 million), Illinois ($201 million), Iowa ($110 million), Louisiana ($149 million), Virginia ($94 million), Nebraska ($72 million), Oregon ($72 million), Minnesota ($71 million), Kansas ($71 million) and Indiana ($56 million).

"Programs like Food for Peace play an important role in tackling world hunger and providing food for developing nations; the program helps to link rural America and the agricultural, transportation and maritime industries to the communities of the developing world," said Tom Earley of Promar International. "By way of processing and transporting food commodities to nations, the program provides millions of dollars in economic benefits and generates thousands of jobs for the State of Iowa."

Key Food for Peace Findings:

  • Nationally, the 11,500 U.S. jobs in deep sea freight transportation resulted in more than 97,000 jobs in other parts of the economy.
  • The program resulted in more than $523 million in earnings for U.S. households in FY09.
  • Ocean freight costs accounted for $336 million (14.5 percent) of the $2.3 billion in aid appropriations in FY09. After MARAD reimbursements ($90 million) to USAID and USDA, they represent $246 (10.6 percent) of appropriations.
  • Food aid cargo represents 15 percent of annual U.S. flag merchant vessel tonnage. If this volume were to be eliminated, the size of the U.S. flag would shrink by up to 30 percent, resulting in as many as 33,000 lost jobs nationwide.

"The United States has historically provided the bulk of its international food assistance in the form of U.S. commodities and food products," Clint Eisenhauer, USA Maritime spokesperson and vice president of Maersk Inc. "We maintain that the processing and transporting of Food for Peace to developing nations has positive economic impacts in the U.S. Moreover, food aid costs less than Iowa residents pay in grocery stores for basic commodities, despite the fact that food aid is moved halfway around the world."

To learn more and read the full report visit  

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