National Corn Growers Association farmer leaders and staff attended this week’s Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa to let attendees know the importance of trade, the RFS and Farm Bill. Chairman Wesley Spurlock, President Kevin Skunes and First-Vice President-elect Kevin Ross attended the show.
President Skunes participated in a pro-RFS rally and a Farmers for Free Trade news conference. After the RFS rally, Skunes had the opportunity to talk with Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue one-on-one.
“I wanted to let the Secretary know that farmers appreciate his support in Washington D.C. and thank him for carrying our message with the administration,” Skunes said. “However, I was very direct and let the Secretary know that there are steps that can be taken now to help farmers and the rural economy and that’s getting RVP (allowing year-round E15 ethanol sales) done now. I also voiced our displeasure with the one-cent per bushel for corn in the trade mitigation package is unacceptable.”
“I made it very clear the trade mitigation package is neither fair or equitable for corn and the relief is necessary because of the Administration’s trade policies,” said Skunes. “It will not provide farmers, who are struggling to meet bankers’ terms, with a bridge to next year’s crop; not even begin to address the serious damage done to corn markets. I want farmers to know NCGA is making every effort to work with the Trump Administration to provide constructive feedback on the impact of various policies on farmers and find immediate solutions.”
The officers had the opportunity to meet with state directors of agriculture from across the Midwest to talk about these key issues impacting America’s corn farmers. Skunes, Spurlock, and Ross also had the opportunity to interact with a Mexican trade delegation to talk about NAFTA and how NCGA operates as a commodity group.
They also met with leaders from Corteva, Bayer and Syngenta. Throughout the show, the officers participated in nearly 30 media interviews. Senior Communications Manager Mark Lambert and Communications Manager Julie Busse were also in attendance.
NCGA is taking a series of actions to do our part to help contain the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the economic fallout it is creating for corn farmers and our customers. Short term, this means instituting policies to protect the health and safety of our stakeholders and the broader communities we serve. Long term, we’re focused on creating solutions to help corn farmers and our customers recover from the financial impacts of this crisis.
CommonGround is a group of farmers connecting with consumers through conversations about science and research and personal stories about food and misinformation surrounding farming. Supported by the NCGA and state corn organizations.
The Soil Health Partnership (SHP) is a farmer-led initiative that fosters transformation in agriculture through improved soil health. Administered by NCGA the partnership has more than 220 working farms enrolled in 16 states. SHP’s mission is to utilize science and data to partner with farmers who are adopting conservation agricultural practices that improve the economic and environmental sustainability of the farm.