GFB Young Farmers & Ranchers visit Washington
Georgia Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers and Ranchers visited congressmen, received briefings on ag issues and familiarized themselves with Washington, D.C., during their annual trip to the nation’s capitol March 6-8.
“We as young farmers want to have a voice up here because everything that we do is taking over the next generation of farming or business,” said GFB Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee Chairman Dustin Covington. “What we need to say should be heard and I feel like this is a trip for us to be heard on.”
The group visited Sen. David Perdue and Reps. Austin Scott, David Scott, Rick Allen, Jody Hice and Sanford Bishop, presenting them with GFB’s position on a variety of issues, including the farm bill, ag labor, trade and regulatory reform.
During the issues briefing, AFBF Executive Director of Public Policy Dale Moore presented an overview of the process of drafting the next farm bill. The 2014 farm bill expires at the end of September, and Moore indicated the new bill could be completed quickly.
“One of the things we know is they’ve got a good handle on how they’re going to work with the policy and how they’re going to meet the budget challenges they’re going to have to work with,” Moore said.
In the visit with Sen. Perdue, the group discussed improvements on infrastructure and agriculture’s dependence on international trade. Perdue assured them that the Trump administration would consider ramifications for agricultural trade as it moves forward with its trade agenda on topics like the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).
“The president knows now the relationship the Ag community has in the NAFTA agreement, and so he’s going to be very careful with that,” Perdue. ‘What we’re trying to do is protect American workers, American industries, and at the same time, develop closer working and trading relationships with our trading partners like Mexico and Canada.”
The GFB group also heard from American Farm Bureau Federation staffers and a representative of the United States Trade Representative, the Animal Agriculture Alliance and the Global Cold Alliance. The group also visited the Canadian Embassy to discuss NAFTA.