Farm Bill Stall & Questions Being Raised
Following a Friday morning session - the Chairs of the Agriculture Committees spoke optimistically about the farm bill's progress. House Chairman Frank Lucas said negotiators are moving right down the path toward a conference report in January. Stabenow echoed that positive outlook - saying she has no question they'll be able to come together and have a farm bill that Congress can take action on next month. Top Senate Ag GOP Negotiator Thad Cochran.
COCHRAN: I'm pleased to say that we're making progress but there are still some decisions that lie ahead of us.
The three-year phase-out of food animal antibiotic uses and over-the-counter antibiotic sales proposed by the USDA raises questions from an expert at Washington State University. Douglas Call, a professor of molecular epidemiology says "Removing antibiotics from non-therapeutic uses in U.S. food-animal production seems reasonable at first glance, but there could be unintended consequences. The consequences include "increased production costs and food prices, shifts in consumer preference for unregulated and cheaper imports, production shifts to unregulated areas of the world resulting in domestic job loss, and increased need for food safety testing for imported products."
Now with today's Food Forethought, here's Lacy Gray.
The agriculture industry has a lot of job opportunities but a shortage of people to fill the need, therefore many ag companies had to get creative when it comes to recruiting professionals to fill available positions. That's where Hiring Heros comes in. Hiring Heros is in its third year of helping veterans, transitioning service members, and military spouses find meaningful employment. Many ag companies are turning to non-traditional arenas to find the professionals they need, professionals like the young men and women transitioning from military service. These are people who know how to commit to a cause, struggle to survive, and overcome great obstacles, all qualities that can be well applied to a career in agriculture. There is a broad range of agricultural industries looking for people to fill career positions. There are thousands of military veterans looking for meaningful employment opportunities. It seems that each has a lot to offer the other. As one returning veteran said, "Farming provides me with a real sense of purpose, as well as offering a way to reconnect with family and community while restoring the farming heartland of this country."
Thanks Lacy. That's today's Northwest Report. I'm Greg Martin on the Ag Information Network.