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Grower-Leaders Advocate for Farmers During Spring Fly-In

Grower-Leaders Advocate for Farmers During Spring Fly-In

This week, members of the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) Board of Directors met with members of the state’s congressional delegation and other key federal policymakers during the organization’s annual spring fly-in in Washington, D.C. During meetings, grower-leaders advocated for continued enforcement of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), policies to expand market access for biofuels, and robust Farm Bill that supports crop insurance and the farm safety net, and more.

Grower-leaders met with over 20 members of Congress and administration officials, including Minnesota Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Tina Smith and Minnesota Reps. Angie Craig, Brad Finstad, Michelle Fischbach, and Pete Stauber. They also met with U.S. Senate Agriculture Committee Ranking Member John Boozman (R-Ark.), and staff representatives for Rep. Betty McCollum (D-Minn.), Majority Whip Tom Emmer (R-Minn.), Speaker of the House Mike Johnson (R-La.), minority members of the Senate Agriculture Committee, and majority members of the House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee.

USDA Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation Robert Bonnie, USDA Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs Jason Hafemeister, EPA Senior Agriculture Advisor Rod Snyder, and Chief Agricultural Negotiator Doug McKalip also hosted meetings with the Minnesota delegation.

Policymakers were asked to pass a Farm Bill with a strong safety net for farmers and emphasized the certainty that growers receive through federal programs to help withstand market price volatility. Leaders also highlighted the need for certainty in the current environment of decreased corn prices and thin margins due to stubbornly high input costs. MCGA grower-leaders also advocated against efforts to require adjusted gross income means testing for crop insurance or cuts to crop insurance premium support and private sector delivery. Additionally, they asked policymakers to support narrowing deductibles under crop insurance by offering greater premium support at higher coverage levels.

On the biofuels front, grower-leaders emphasized the meaningful role renewable fuels like ethanol can play in helping the U.S. achieve energy independence and meet climate objectives. Ethanol reduces greenhouse gas emissions by about 50% compared to regular unleaded while saving drivers money at the pump and increasing consumer choice.

To maintain market access for ethanol, grower-leaders asked lawmakers to support the bipartisan Consumer and Fuel Retailer Choice Act, which would ensure permanent and uninterrupted sales of Unleaded 88 nationwide. Grower-leaders also thanked lawmakers who are sponsoring the bill, including Sens. Klobuchar and Smith and Reps. Craig, Fischbach, and Finstad.

Grower-leaders also asked lawmakers to support the Next Generation Fuels Act, a bipartisan bill that would establish a clean, high-octane standard for fuel and require that sources of additional octane reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 40%. The bill is sponsored by Sen. Klobuchar and Reps. Craig, Fischbach, and Finstad.

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Categories: Minnesota, Crops, Corn, Rural Lifestyle, Farm Safety

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