NAWG Weekly Updates, September 12, 2019

NAWG Holds Fly-In to Complement Farmers for Free Trade Rally
On September 12, 2019, Farmers for Free Trade held a rally on Capitol Hill to raise support for the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). Members of Congress, including House Committee On Agriculture Chairman Collin Peterson and Ranking Member Congressman Mike Conaway, as well as farm leaders attended the event to discuss how USMCA provides growers with improved market access while maintaining the zero-tariff platform. With NAWG being a member of Farmers for Free Trade, President Ben Scholz was slated to provide brief remarks during the rally. Additionally, NAWG tacked on a trade fly-in to complement the Farmers For Free Trade Rally. Read our release here: http://bit.ly/2ZRLRvH and follow us on Twitter (@wheatworld) with the hashtags #WheatinDC, #Rally4USMCA, and #USMCANow

USDA Resources Available for Farmers hurt by 2018-2019 Disasters
USDA Sonny Perdue has announced that producers that were affected by natural disasters from 2018 and 2019, including Hurricane Dorian, can apply for assistance through the Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+). Signup opened on September 11, 2019. Through WHIP+, $3 billion is available and will be applicable to producers who lost certain crops, trees, bushes, or vines within counties with a Presidential Emergency Disaster Declaration. The cause of losses must be derived from hurricanes, floods, tornadoes, typhoons, volcanic activity, snowstorms or wildfires from 2018 and 2019. Included with the package is a provision providing for a supplemental disaster (“bonus”) payment equal to 10 percent of a producers’ prevent plant indemnity, plus an additional 5 percent will be provided to those who purchased harvest price option coverage. Additionally, the program will provide assistance for losses of eligible farm-stored commodities due to eligible disaster events in 2018 and 2019.

EPA, Corps Scrap 2015 WOTUS with Repeal Rule
On September 12, 2019, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of the Army finalized a rule to repeal the Obama administration’s overreach in the federal regulation of waters and wetlands. The action will make pre-2015 Clean Water Act regulations the law of the land. After the Trump Administration took office, it tried to prevent implementation of the 2015 rule, but court battles in various states resulted in a patchwork of regulations. NAWG opposes the 2015 regulation and welcomes this news. Additionally, NAWG has been providing comments throughout the regulatory review process.

Sept 12th WASDE Report Shows Wheat Supply and Demand to Remain Unchanged
On September 12, 2019, the USDA released its World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report. According to the report, “the 2019/20 U.S. wheat supply and demand outlook is unchanged this month but there were offsetting by-class changes for wheat exports. The projected season-average farm price is $4.80 per bushel, down $0.20 on NASS monthly prices reported to date and expectations for cash and futures prices for the remainder of the marketing year (MY). For wheat, NASS is projecting production of 53.9 million tons, up from 2018s figure of nearly 51.3 million tons. Globally, however, the wheat outlook is for lower supplies, reduced consumption and exports, and higher ending stocks,” the WASDE said.

OSTP’s Bioeconomy Request for Information
In the September 10, 2019 Federal Register, the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) published a Request for Information on the U.S. Bioeconomy. Through this Request for Information (RFI), OSTP seeks input from the public, including those with capital investments, performing innovative research, or developing enabling platforms and applications in the field of biological sciences, to include healthcare, medicine, pharmaceuticals, biotechnology, manufacturing, energy production, and agriculture. The deadline for comments is October 22, 2019.

SHI Releases Report Highlighting the Impact of the Farm Bill on Soil Health
On September 12, 2019, the Soil Health Institute and the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition released a comprehensive review of each farm bill provision and its role in advancing soil health. Read here the report “Impact of 2018 Farm Bill Provisions on Soil Health”.

Registration and Housing Officially Open for the 2019 NAWG/USW Fall Conference
Registration and housing have officially opened for the 2019 NAWG/USW Fall Conference. This year’s conference will take place at the Hilton Santa Fe Buffalo Thunder Hotel in Santa Fe, NM., from Monday, November 4 through Wednesday, November 6, 2019. To reserve your room under the NAWG Block click here. To register for the meeting, visit USW’s page here. For more details, including NAWG’s meeting schedule, visit our conference page here.