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Area Residents Represent State Farm Bureau

AUSTIN, Texas — Ripley residents Evan and Elizabeth Schiedel of Ripley, members of the Chautauqua County Farm Bureau, represented the New York State Farm Bureau at the 101st annual American Farm Bureau Federation annual meeting during youth competitions for the Achievement in Agriculture Award.

Delegates at the meeting established public policy positions for the organization, including passing several that originated through the New York Farm Bureau’s policy development process aimed at better positioning farmers for the future.

Among the policy positions established this week were several changes to direct the dairy conversation with the United States Department of Agriculture over things that may improve the price that farmers receive for their milk. Delegates also passed policy to tackle rising federal H-2A Adverse Effect Wage Rates for agricultural guest workers as well as emphasizing the need for a year-round federal visa program to address labor shortages for all of agriculture.

Delegates also supported several new policies to improve the cultivation of industrial hemp, including support for allowing a higher THC level in hemp, giving American Farm Bureau Federation staff the flexibility to engage in discussions with regulators about the appropriate legal level, and to increase the window of time farmers are allowed to conduct THC testing, acknowledging the many questions about how the testing process will work and the potential for backlogs.

New policies are on the books supporting science-based climate change research and the documentation of agriculture’s tremendous advances toward climate-smart practices. In addition, New York Farm Bureau officials said they were successful in getting support for the issuance and enforcement of the National Organic Program Origin of Livestock Rule.

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