NAWG Weekly Updates, July 17, 2018

NAWG Board Member Testifies House Hearing on Tariffs and Ag
On Wednesday, July 18th, NAWG Board of Director Michelle Erikson-Jones testified on behalf of Farmers for Free Trade and NAWG before the House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade. The hearing focused on the effects of tariffs on U.S. agriculture and rural communities. In her statement, Erickson-Jones highlighted the uncertainty that wheat farmers across the country are facing due to the threats of the ongoing trade war with China. She testified alongside the presidents of South Dakota, Texas and Minnesota Farm Bureau Federations, a Washington cherry farmer, and an economist from the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities. Her full statement and press release can be found on the Farmers for Free Trade website.

U.S. Agriculture Under Secretary Northey to Visit NAWG Officer Farm
On Friday, July 20th, U.S. Department of Agriculture Under Secretary Bill Northey and Rep. Dan Newhouse (R-WA-04) will visit NAWG Secretary Nicole Berg’s Farm to discuss wheat harvest, the Conservation Reserve Program, and air quality issues. Follow Nicole Berg on Twitter for updates.

NAWG and U.S. Wheat to Exhibit at MD Commodity Classic
On July 26th, wheat will be exhibiting at the 20th Annual Maryland Commodity Classic which will take place at Queen Anne’s 4-H park. NAWG’s Director of Communications Caitlin Eannello and USW’s VP of Communications Steve Mercer will have a joint table and plan to be active on social media. Additionally, Bill Northey, Under Secretary of Agriculture for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services, will serve as keynote for the event.

2018 Farm Bill Conferees Announced
On Thursday, July 18, 2018, House Speaker Paul Ryan and Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi named the House conferees for the 2018 Farm Bill. These twenty-nine Republicans and eighteen Democrats will seek to resolve the differences between the two chambers’ bills. Republican conferees include thirteen members from the House Ag Committee, while Democrats have ten conferees from the Committee.

NAWG continues to keep its members updated on the progress of the Farm Bill as it moves to Conference. NAWG staff have drafted a side-by-side of the Senate and House versions of the Farm Bill and have worked with the retrospective Committees to finalize and confirm priorities for a final Farm Bill.

 U.S. Wheat Associates Launches New Website
On Monday, July 16, 2018, U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) introduced a new look and organization to its website, www.uswheat.org. To learn more, read their release here.

Fuels America Pushes for RFS Comments to EPA
The Fuels America Coalition is pushing for consumers to join in urging the EPA to maintain a strong Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). A statement by Fuels America outlines the importance of RFS in efforts to maintain energy security, promote jobs, boost the economy, and work toward keeping the air clean.  Fuels America believes that the EPA should uphold the congressional targets for RFS, which would keep biofuels from being driven out of the marketplace due to waivers for oil companies.  The EPA is currently accepting public comments about the issue. 

Chlorpyrifos Alliance Pushes for Public Comments to EPA
The Chlorpyrifos Alliance is making a final push for comments to be made to the EPA regarding the National Marine Fisheries Service Biological Opinion Under the Endangered Species Act. The Alliance believes that NMFS BiOp should not be used for regulatory decisions until there is an improvement in the science and process.  In addition, they argues that there are current inconsistencies with what is already known about the environmental baseline and serious scientific flaws. The EPA is accepting comments up until July 23. Comments can be submitted on the EPA website. 

National Wheat Yield Contest: Spring Wheat Category
As the 2018 National Wheat Yield Contest spring wheat deadline quickly approaches on August 1, the National Wheat Foundation is encouraging wheat growers to aim higher and register their crop in this year’s contest. Think your spring wheat harvest might be a bin buster? Don’t forget you can submit more than one entry to the contest for the chance to become a nationally recognized grower!

Now that your wheat has emerged and is off and running, consider, register before August 1 to be in it to win it! Visit wheatfoundation.org for more details and to register today.