California farmers hope congressional budget-cutters spare some of their favorite subsidies and trade promotion programs.
On Thursday, even as Capitol Hill was consumed with talk about saving money, the farmers urged lawmakers to continue spending hundreds of millions of dollars to boost U.S. farm exports.
"Without the assistance of federal funding, participating organizations such as Gerawan Farming would be unable to undertake (certain) types of activities," Fresno County farmer George Nikolich advised a House panel.
Nikolich and Sunkist Growers vice president Michael Wootton were summoned to the House subcommittee that oversees foreign agriculture, as part of the groundwork being laid for the 2012 farm bill. They found a sympathetic audience, amid an uncertain time.