My Stance on Agriculture
In my district, farm policies are, for good reason, of great concern to voters. As a farmer and rancher myself, I am confident that my positions will resonate with the farming community here in Minnesota. As a matter of fact, I’m running under the only party whose main platform is centered around agriculture.
Stop the War on Ag. There are some in congress, primarily from the progressive wing, who have labeled farming, and feeding the world as a danger to the climate. They push agendas and restrictions that farmers, and particularly smaller farmers, cannot adhere to causing them to lose their farms, leaving only large corporate farms.
Stop the War on Energy. Educating the urban population is key. Farming is run primarily on diesel, fertilizer comes from natural gas, our crops are dried with propane, and hog barns are heated by gas. Inflating the prices on energy greatly reduces a farmer’s ability to feed the world. Electric farm equipment is expensive and not currently suitable for our needs. Stopping to charge a battery is not sustainable.
Free Trade. President Trump used the U.S.’s position of “#1 importer in the world” as leverage to force acceptance and importation of all our agriculture products. No country calling itself our ally or trading partner should ever reject our corn, soy, or beef. Free trade means free trade.
Legalize Hemp. I’m in talks with the University of Minnesota Crookston staff to create a feed research study for this high yield, drought resistant, low fertilizer product that could be our feed and fiber product of the future.
Increase Markets and Profits. Reductions in USDA rules would allow for farm-to-table local sales and increased opportunities, especially for those raising livestock. With more and more processors using corporate owned animals the free-market for smaller livestock farmers is almost non-existent. Reduction in USDA rules would also give consumers more leverage to ensure they are getting the best product for the money. Many of us are aware of people who had to slaughter animals during COVID when processors shut down. Current regulations prevented local consumers from simply purchasing this meat, as opposed to wasting it.
USDA reforms are required to encourage diversification of food processors and ensure food security, especially during major disasters. I am a “producers first” advocate. We need processors who are able to serve all, including local communities and smaller farmers.
Population and Diversity. I believe that less government is better government. So, when should the government intervene? To increase markets, increasingly making a place for smaller, or specialty farms. We need a more diverse ag economy to support resilient vendor and co-op communities.
I raise belted Galloway cattle, goats, and pasture raised hogs. While not the future of BIG ag, I have a market, as so many other small farmers. Diversity needs to be encouraged. Family farms have been shrinking. The giant processors and commodity giants can’t be our only voice in DC.
Waters of the USA. Smaller government is good government. There will never be Waters of the USA if you want my vote on any ag or environmental bill. This is a gross overreach of the Federal Government. As a supporter of property rights I firmly believe that your land is your land. Nobody should force you to plant “carbon capture” crops, or limit your options, and profit. My loyalty lies with farmers and constituents of this district. If I had two calls waiting, one from ADM and the other from Lyon County Corn & Soy Growers, ADM will have to wait.
The Farm Bill is the most important piece of legislation in the world. What comes of it is a deciding factor in whether or not we can make a living.
I sat down with Collin Peterson to better understand the farm bill and will continue to seek out his assistance, and others along the way, while always listening to my constituents.