The National Corn Growers Association’s annual Priority and Policy Conference wrapped up last week in St. Louis, concluding a series of discussions on state and national priorities for 2014, NCGA policies and a keynote presentation on the ongoing activities of the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance. This in-depth look at program research, accomplishments and plans allowed the grower leaders and state organization representatives in attendance to share important information about consumer sentiment and effective communications strategies. “This meeting consistently provides a chance for NCGA leadership to gain valuable insight from our state affiliates while fostering deep discussions that help all of us examine the issues more fully,” said NCGA President Pam Johnson, a grower from Floyd, Iowa. “The research coming out of the USFRA program shows that consumers want farmers to listen to public concerns also. With so much of the population removed from agriculture, we must recognize the importance of truly listening if we are to share in a productive, meaningful dialogue.”
The meeting includes chairs, presidents and executive directors of NCGA’s state organizations, as well chairs and vice chairs of the organization’s action teams and committees. For two days, these leaders discussed organizational policy and their perspective on the relative importance of each issue facing the industry. While each participant brought keen insight, it quickly became evident that all parties recognized the important of key legislation, including a farm bill and the Renewable Fuel Standard, to the future of the industry.
Again this year, as part of a collaborative initiative with the U.S. Grains Council, the Priority and Policy Conference also included leadership from that organization for a discussion of USGC priorities and trade issues.