Through Title II of the Food for Peace Act, the United States provides U.S. agricultural commodities to meet emergency food needs in foreign countries. In fiscal years 2007 to 2012, USAID delivered $9.2 billion in emergency food aid to recipient countries through cooperating sponsors. In 2000, Congress authorized USAID to order, transport, and store food for prepositioning in both overseas and domestic locations. Through prepositioning, the agency orders food before it is requested and stores it in warehouses in or near regions with historically high needs. GAO was asked to examine U.S. international food aid procurement. This report examines (1) the effects of prepositioning on emergency food aid delivery time frames, (2) the effects of prepositioning on the costs of the food aid, and (3) the extent to which the agency monitors prepositioning to maximize time savings and cost effectiveness. GAO analyzed data on delivery time frames and costs; reviewed agency documents; and interviewed agency officials and representatives from WFP, other cooperating sponsors, and ocean freight contractors.
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