NAWG Weekly Updates, September 28, 2017

NAWG Concludes Its Policy Fly-In with More Than 100 Congressional Meetings
Visiting almost all House and Senate Agriculture Committee Members and their offices, the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) concluded its annual policy Fly-in on September 27, 2017. Over two days, NAWG hosted around thirty growers from twelve top wheat producing states who spoke on the importance of the Farm Bill. Read the release here.

Wheat Organizations Applaud Trump Administration’s Aggressive Trade Enforcement at the WTO
On September 27, 2017, U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) and the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) issued a release welcoming the decision by the Trump Administration to make sure China is living up to its commitments on wheat trade. In response to action by the Administration, the World Trade Organization (WTO) Dispute Settlement Body has established a panel to rule on a complaint filed in December 2016 by the United States Trade Representative (USTR) regarding China’s administration of its tariff rate quotas (TRQs) for wheat and other agricultural products. USW and NAWG are very pleased with the Trump Administration’s aggressive use of the WTO dispute settlement mechanism on behalf of wheat farmers. Read the joint release here.

NAWG Submits Comments on EPA Withdrawal of WOTUS
On September 25, 2017, the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) submitted comments on the withdrawal of the Waters of the U.S Regulation, Docket Number: EPA-HQ-OW-2017-0203. In its comments, NAWG expressed support for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)’s action to withdraw and revise the regulation. NAWG also reiterated its concerns about the broad reach of WOTUS and areas of land that would come under jurisdiction outlined in the regulation. In a release, NAWG President and Sharon Springs, KS farmer David Schemm stated that “our growers are seeking clarity in understanding which waters come under the jurisdiction of the Clean Water Act and the regulation finalized in 2015 does not provide that clarification…The 2015 regulation also oversteps the federal role and should allow for state actions and respect the roles of cooperative federalism.” Read the release here.

NAWG Past President Don Loeslie to Give Speech on Food and Peace
Minnesota wheat grower and NAWG Past President Don Loeslie be giving a speech on September 28th on how food can become an ultimate weapon for peace in the post-World War II era. The speech will be taking place at the Dole Institute in Lawrence, KS. It will be streamed live through this link: http://doleinstitute.org/live-streaming/.

Conaway, Peterson Announce Farm Bill Listening Session in NY
House Agriculture Committee Chairman K. Michael Conaway (TX-11) and Ranking Member Collin Peterson (MN-7) announced a committee listening session of the committee’s efforts to gather input for the upcoming farm bill. They stated the listening sessions have been opportunities to hear from producers and stakeholders and their experiences. [The Next Farm Bill, Conversations in the Field, Cobleskill, New York, October 9, 2017]

Trilateral Statement on the Conclusion of the Third Round of NAFTA Negotiations
In its recent release, the U.S. Trade Representative announced that Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. successfully concluded the third round of the renegotiation and modernization of North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA). The round took place in Ottawa, Canada from September 23 to 27, 2017.  Negotiators made significant progress in several areas through the consolidation of text proposals, narrowing gaps and agreeing to elements of the negotiating text. Negotiators are now working from consolidated texts in most areas, demonstrating a commitment from all parties to advance discussions in the near term. Read the release here.

National Wheat Yield Contest – October 01, 2017 Deadline
Harvest Data for the National Wheat Yield Contest must be submitted by October 01, 2017. For more information visit https://wheatfoundation.org/projects-programs/national-wheat-yield-contest/

Jerry Minore Memorial Scholarship Opportunity for Students in Agriculture
Jerry Minore was a longtime friend of the wheat industry and advocate for wheat farmers. To honor his work and life, his company, BASF, has partnered with the National Wheat Foundation to establish a scholarship for students with connections to the wheat industry who are planning careers in agriculture. The Minore Memorial Scholarship will fund four college scholarships for the 2018-2019 academic year: two $1,500 scholarships and two $1,000 scholarships. Deadline for applications is December 31, 2017. For more information on how to apply, visit the National Wheat Foundation site.

NAWG Opens Registration for Fall Conference!
NAWG has opened its registration and hotel links for its 2017 Wheat Industry Fall Conference. This year’s conference is scheduled for October 16-20, 2017 at the Embassy Suites North Charleston in North Charleston, SC. For more information and scheduled visit: https://www.wheatworld.org/newsroom/meetings-events/fall-wheat-conference/.