(Posted Thu. Nov 14th, 2013)

Nov. 14:  Leaders of the National Corn Growers Association had lots to talk about this morning when farm journalists gathered in Kansas City from around the country for the annual meeting of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting.


Top issues discussed were the size of the record corn crop, the stalled farm bill, and ethanol – especially after an Associated Press story on corn and ethanol “with more holes than a piece of Swiss cheese,” as NCGA President Martin Barbre put it.


“This annual meeting gives us a chance to tell our story, the great story of American agriculture, to some of the reporters who know our challenges the most,” Barbre said. “These are the men and women we dial into each day back on the farm, and we appreciate all they do to keep us informed, entertained and engaged.”


The Associated Press story, and the possibility the federal government would this week announce a reduction in the obligation for ethanol in the Renewable Fuel Standard, was topic No. 1 for Barbre, an Illinois farmer, and NCGA First Vice President Chip Bowling, of Maryland.


“There’s never a good time to cut back on ethanol, but this is the worst possible time to do so,” Bowling said. “We’re looking at a record crop and low corn prices that are hovering around break-even for our farmers. Any cut in ethanol will drive prices down further, impacting not only farm families but the communities in which they live. The impact would be enormous, and the coincidence of the AP hit piece on corn farmers only makes things worse.”


Click here for complete information the Renewable Fuel Standard, including a collection of responses to the AP story.


At the same time, NCGA board member Rob Elliott was on hand to talk about a more positive topic – the recent announcement that Commodity Classic is expanding in 2016 to include the Association of Equipment Manufacturers. Elliott serves as co-chair of the 2014 event.


“We’re very excited about this announcement because it’s great news for our farmers and other stakeholders,” Elliott said. “It’s going to be a show that’s above and beyond Commodity Classic and AG CONNECT, greater than the sum of its parts. This new show will benefit farmers who want to take their operations to the next level, by providing access to the broadest spectrum of experts and new technologies from agribusiness under one roof.”


Registration for the 2014 Commodity Classic, to be held in San Antonio, Tex., opens Tuesday, Nov. 19. Click here for information.