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News Release | PennPIRG Education Fund | Budget, Food

Ag Subsidies Pay for 21 Twinkies per Taxpayer, But Only Half of an Apple Apiece

Federal subsidies for commodity crops are subsidizing junk food additives like high fructose corn syrup, enough to pay for 21 Twinkies per taxpayer every year, according to PennPIRG’s new report, Apples to Twinkies 2012. Meanwhile, limited subsidies for fresh fruits and vegetables would buy one half of an apple per taxpayer.

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Report | PennPIRG Education Fund | Budget, Food

Apples to Twinkies 2012

In this report, we find that in 2011, over $1.28 billion in taxpayer subsidies went to junk food ingredients, bringing the total to a staggering $18.2 billion since 1995. To put that figure in perspective, $18.2 billion is enough to buy 2.9 billion Twinkies every year - 21 for every single American taxpayer.

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Blog Post | Consumer Protection

Putting Public Health and Safety First

Over the years, Americans have demanded - and learned to count on - government safeguards to protect the air we breathe and the food we eat. Unfortunately, a slew of proposed anti-regulatory bills targeting government safeguards are putting Pennsylvanians at risk. 

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News Release | PennPIRG | Higher Ed

Responding to Students, Congress Extends Low College Loan Rate

Statement of Rich Williams, PennPIRG Higher Education Advocate, on the Congressional passage of bipartisan legislation to prevent subsidized Stafford student loan interest rates from doubling:

Congress listened to students and their families and delivered a bill that stops student loan interest rates from doubling. Students already face unprecedented student loan debt and adding an additional $1,000 more would not only crunch individual borrowers, but would have further weighed down the recovering economy. We applaud Congress for coming together to pass this much-needed legislation.

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News Release | PennPIRG | Transportation

Transportation Bill is a Step Backwards

Statement by Phineas Baxandall, PennPIRG’s Senior Transportation Analyst, regarding the disappointing federal Transportation Bill as released from conference committee today.

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Media Hit | Budget, Transportation

Pennsylvania should proceed with caution when it comes to privatizing its infrastructure

Cash-strapped governments across Pennsylvania are struggling to plug holes blown in their budgets by the economic downturn while the state's infrastructure remains in desperate need of maintenance and repair. Pennsylvania's Legislature must address our transportation funding crisis, but it must proceed with caution. Vital public assets should be operated for the public interest.

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News Release | Health Care

Nationwide study of new health exchanges shows Pennsylvania how to lower costs for consumers

Philadelphia, PA – Many states are creating health exchanges to deliver better value for consumers, and Pennsylvania should follow their lead, according to Making the Grade, a new report by PennPIRG. Health exchanges are competitive marketplaces that can empower individuals and small businesses with better, more affordable options for coverage.  Under the federal health reform law, each state will have an exchange up and running in 2014.

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Media Hit | Food

PennPIRG urges Senate to pass bill to strengthen FDA

A coalition of consumer groups says that a steady stream of food recalls - including last month's pullback of more than half a billion eggs by two Iowa producers - shows how urgent it is for Congress to require regular inspections of production facilities and to give the Food and Drug Administration authority to order food recalls.

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Media Hit | Food

3 consumer groups push Pa. on food safety

Hoping to spur legislators to pass food safety reforms, three prominent consumer groups Wednesday released a report identifying 85 recalls triggered by contaminated foods nationwide over the last 13 months -- the majority linked to the potentially deadly bacteria salmonella, the pathogen responsible for the country's largest ever egg recall last month.

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Media Hit | Food

PennPIRG urges Senate to pass food recall legislation

The U.S. Senate’s handling of food safety protections was called into question Wednesday in a study released by PennPIRG, the Consumer Federation of America and the Center for Science in the Public Interest.

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Priority Action

The overuse of antibiotics on factory farms is threatening these lifesaving medicines. Call on big restaurants to do their part and stop buying meat raised with critical antibiotics.

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