Ohio Farm Bureau brings policy concerns to D.C.

Ohio Farm Bureau Federation members shared a wide range of policy issues impacting agriculture in recent meetings with members of Congress.

Advocacy chairman Matt Aultman tells Brownfield farmers are concerned about profitability this year with operating costs remaining high and incomes projected lower.

“Year over year operating cost for, they give an example, here $350,000 went from somewhere in the neighborhood of $6,000 or $7000 to manage that interest rate on that operating line to over 20,000 now,” he shares.

Hancock County Farm Bureau President Heather Bryan says she’s worried about the future of farmland preservation.

“We are very pro energy, but we want to make sure we’re retaining prime farmland for farmland and maybe move some of the renewable energy into less farmable land, less arable land,” she shares.

Perry County Farm Bureau President Rich Maxwell tells Brownfield conservation enrollments, like with the Environmental Quality Assurance Program, need to be streamlined.

“The ranking process is a little rough to get in initially,” he explains. “You have a lot of questions and ranking and stuff, so trying to streamline that and make it a little bit easier I think more people would be more apt to get into it.”

Farm bill passage, the availability of higher ethanol blends, access to approved inputs like dicamba, and federal funding were also issues discussed with lawmakers as part of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation’s County President’s Trip in Washington D.C.

Photo courtesy of Ohio Farm Bureau Federation.

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