Rebecca Boehm

Economist

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Rebecca Boehm is an economist with the Food & Environment program at the Union of Concerned Scientists. In her role, she conducts applied economic research to advance the development of a healthier, more sustainable, and equitable food system. See Rebecca's full bio.

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Baby Shark Cereal and Maple Syrup Collusion: Why Competition in Our Food System Matters

The cereal aisle in your typical American supermarket is remarkable. Though dazzling to the eyes, it’s overstimulating, especially to any parent who has bravely marched down this aisle with a child in tow. But behind the cast of cereal box characters – Tony the Tiger, Toucam Sam, Dig’em Frog, Lucky, Snap, Crackle and Pop – is a story about competition in our food system and how it impacts consumers, the farmers who grow our food and quite possibly the very soil they grow it in. Read more >

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White House

Trump Axing Advisory Committees Is Bad for Farmers and Nation’s Food Supply

Earlier this summer, the Trump administration issued an Executive Order that would arbitrarily eliminate one-third of all federal advisory committees (FACs) not mandated by statute across the government, while restricting an agency’s ability to form new FACs. FACs provide an avenue for outside experts and stakeholders to weigh in on federal programs and policies, including roughly 150 that advise the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) on a variety of food and farming issues. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and other agency and department heads have until today to make these cuts. Read more >

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Adults Behaving Badly: Climate Edition

Young people shouldn’t have to organize a global climate strike. That’s our job. Read more >

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USDA Report: Farm Payments Up 42%, Farm Debt Rising

On August 30th the U.S. Department of Agriculture presented its August 2019 Farm Income Forecast. What struck me most: the eye-popping one year 42.5% increase in federal government direct farm program payments. That’s right, federal government direct payments to farmers are expected to rise by $5.6 billion in just one year.  Read more >

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Photo: aisletwentytwo/CC BY 2.0 (Flickr)

Is the USDA Relocation Just Good Old-Fashioned Rent Seeking?

One of things I cherish about economists is their ability to call BS when they see it. In research settings economists tend to have a reputation for asking hard-hitting questions during seminars. They are known for having the most unpopular opinion and for being unabashedly proud of it. I’ve personally seen non-economists bristle at the thought of giving a talk to an economics-oriented audience. As someone who straddles the worlds of public health and economics I get it, trust me. I’ve been there. Read more >

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