Over the past 18 months, the Indiana State Department of Agriculture, along with a wide variety of farm and commodity groups, has been working on a roadmap to the future, a plan to guide growth in Indiana agriculture for the next 10 years. That plan was revealed to the public yesterday. ISDA Director Ted McKinney said the goal of the plan is to grow Indiana agriculture, “We have a goal of reaching $3 billion in new investment in Indiana agriculture. There are many crucial components to this plan, which spans a variety of sectors of agriculture, but the bottom line is that we are working together to move the industry forward.” He added many who helped draft the plan to hope we can bring several new ethanol plants to the state and perhaps some poultry and pork processing facilities. “If we can provide new outlets for farmers who want to expand and diversify,” he said.
Indiana Farm Bureau President Randy Kron said the plan fits well into the goals of Farm Bureau and will make Indiana agriculture better, “This plan ensures that Indiana agriculture not only remains competitive but also a leader both nationally and internationally over the next decade. This is an exciting time to be a part of the industry.”
The plan has 7 primary areas of focus:
Economic & Community Development
Education & Career Development
Food and Agricultural Innovation
Natural Resources, Stewardship & Environment
Public Relations & Outreach
Each priority includes several key initiatives, which list specific action items. To create a clear path forward, each action item includes a champion(s), designated timeframe and resources required to complete the action.
You can read the plan at here.
Both Governor Holcomb and Lt. Governor Crouch attended the public announcement of the plan. Governor Holcomb stated that having this kind of plan will keep agriculture a vital part of the Hoosier economy, “Having plan like this is important and will help with attracting investors and business to Indiana.” Crouch told HAT the development of the plan helped unite the ag industry and that will also help keep agriculture growing.
“Creating a strong economic climate and aligning nutrient management strategies have been values of ACI, and now we look forward to joining our partners to bring Indiana to the next level in these areas,” said Amy Cornell, President of the Agribusiness Council of Indiana. “This strategic outline for agriculture and the partners that came together to create it demonstrates that Indiana is the place to be for agribusiness.”
“Highlighting the remarkable strengths and opportunities in the area of food and agricultural innovation as one of the main pillars of the Indiana Agriculture Strategic Plan verifies the long-term commitment of our state to this sector,” said Beth Bechdol, president, and CEO of AgriNovus Indiana. “Our ag biosciences sector brings together the assets of our agriculture, life sciences, and technology industries which offer tremendous economic development potential across the state.”
“The Indiana Soybean Alliance, Indiana Corn Marketing Council, and Indiana Corn Growers Association are proud to be a part of Indiana’s new 10-year Strategic Plan,” said Jane Ade Stevens, CEO of Indiana Soybean Alliance, Indiana Corn Marketing Council, Indiana Corn Growers Association. “While all the priorities of the plan are important to corn and soybean farmers, economic development, environmental stewardship, and infrastructure rise to the top. Indiana soybean and corn farmers are committed to protecting the land, roadways, and waterways, and we are pleased to see the direction this plan is heading to ensure agriculture stays viable in Indiana.”
Indiana agriculture has changed significantly since the last strategic plan was developed. If the goals of this plan are met, Indiana agriculture will be much different in 10 years than it is today.