Impact of COVID-19 on Agriculture

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Farm Labor Must be Exempt from South Africa Travel Ban

January 28, 2021 | News Releases

The American Farm Bureau Federation is asking the Biden administration to exempt farm labor from its recent proclamation suspending travel from several countries due to COVID-19 concerns. The ban includes guest workers from South Africa.
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Farmer and Rancher Input is Critical for Climate Success

January 27, 2021 | News Releases

American Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall commented today on President Biden’s executive order calling on USDA to collect input from farmers and ranchers on climate-related federal programs.
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USDA Provides Clarity in Final Hemp Rule

January 26, 2021 | Newsline

The Department of Agriculture recently published a final rule clarifying regulations for U.S. hemp production. Micheal Clements shares how changes to the rule will benefit hemp producers.
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AFBF Makes Recommendations to Improve USDA NASS Data Collections

January 21, 2021 | Newsline

The American Farm Bureau Federation released a report Thursday detailing how USDA NASS can improve accuracy and farmer confidence in survey results. Micheal Clements shares what the recommendations are.
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New Report Recommends Improvements to NASS

January 21, 2021 | News Releases

A new report released today by the American Farm Bureau Federation provides an in-depth examination into the USDA-National Agricultural Statistics Service’s (NASS) survey collection and data reporting issues. It also provides recommendations to improve accuracy and farmer confidence in the survey results.
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AFBF Congratulates President Biden on Inauguration

January 20, 2021 | News Releases

American Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall commented today on the inauguration of President Joe Biden, who was sworn-in as the 46th president of the United States. “The American Farm Bureau Federation congratulates President Joe Biden as he begins his term as 46th president of the United States. We also congratulate Vice President Kamala Harris as she makes history as the first woman to serve as America’s vice president. “The past several weeks have been difficult for all of America. We were saddened by the violence that threatened a peaceful transfer of power, but what we witnessed today is a hallmark of what has made this country an example for the rest of the world. We have peacefully ushered in new leaders and with them new appreciation for the resilience of our democracy. Today, we turn the page, learn the lessons, and look to the future with the hope and optimism that are core to who we are as Americans. “Addressing the needs of America’s farmers, ranchers and rural communities is important, including strengthening the farm bill, expanding trade and finding a fair solution to the farm labor shortage. We must extend broadband coverage to ensure rural families, businesses, schools and healthcare facilities can compete in today’s digital reality. We are also looking for partners in our efforts to achieve sustainability goals while ensuring climate policies remain market-based and voluntary. We have been meeting with President Biden’s nominees to discuss priority issues and today we shift into high gear to achieve these goals. “All of this can be done if we commit ourselves to working together for a better America. Agriculture is traditionally divided more by regional differences than by political parties. We urge our elected leaders to continue that tradition of bipartisanship in the agriculture committees and throughout our government. Our country faces some big challenges. Let’s get to work on solutions.”
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USDA Expands CFAP to Contract Growers

January 19, 2021 | Newsline

The Department of Agriculture has updated the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program to provide relief to more producers. Micheal Clements shares who can apply for the relief.
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AFBF Congratulates Dr. Jewel Bronaugh on Her Nomination for USDA Deputy Secretary

January 18, 2021 | News Releases

President-elect Joe Biden announced he will nominate Dr. Jewel Bronaugh to serve as Deputy Secretary of Agriculture. The following statement may be attributed to American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall: “AFBF congratulates Dr. Jewel Bronaugh on her nomination to serve as USDA Deputy Secretary. Dr. Bronaugh’s work as Virginia’s Agriculture Commissioner and her previous experience as state director of USDA’s Farm Service Agency have established her as someone who understands the needs of America’s farmers and ranchers. We also appreciate the work she has done to address mental health issues in rural communities - a priority we hope she continues to pursue at the federal level. “Dr. Bronaugh’s nomination, as well as the nomination of Tom Vilsack for Secretary of Agriculture, shows President-elect Biden is carefully considering the challenges facing our nation’s farmers and ranchers. We look forward to working with the new leadership at USDA to ensure American agriculture continues to lead the world in growing safe, affordable food.” Virginia Farm Bureau President Wayne F. Pryor also commented on Dr. Bronaugh’s nomination: “Virginia Farm Bureau is proud to see Dr. Bronaugh nominated as USDA Deputy Secretary. The Commonwealth has been fortunate to benefit from Dr. Bronaugh’s leadership as VDACS Commissioner, State FSA Executive Director, and her roles at Virginia State University. She has done much to promote agriculture and address the many issues facing farm families and rural Virginia. Dr. Bronaugh will carry on this work in her new leadership role in Washington, D.C., and we support her swift confirmation”
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AFBF Sets 2021 Policy Objectives

January 15, 2021 | Newsline

Farm Bureau delegates voted on policy priorities for 2021 at the conclusion of the American Farm Bureau Federation Virtual Annual Convention. Micheal Clements shares what issues top the list for the new year.
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AFBF Chief Economist John Newton Reappointed to Agricultural Trade Advisory Committee

January 15, 2021 | News Releases

John Newton, the American Farm Bureau Federation’s chief economist, was recently reappointed to serve on the Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee for Trade in Animals and Animal Products, one of six Agricultural Technical Advisory Committees.
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