(Posted Thu. Jan 22nd, 2015)
Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture released its analysis of statistics from the 2012 census of agriculture as they relate to Congressional districts. This document, which provides insight into the characteristics and value of farming and ranching operations each member of Congress represents, provides growers with key information to clearly document the importance of ag issues to the federal officials they elect.
“Agriculture acts as a consistent engine fueling America’s economy, and every farmer should ensure that his or her Congressional delegation understands the importance of the industry to their constituents,” said National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling, who farms in Maryland. “We have all heard many times what a small portion of the population actively farms today, but it is important we fully realize the economic benefit we provide the broader economy. The information in this important document allows us to quantify our impact and, in turn, help our federal representatives appreciate the significance of the issues we face.”
The census of agriculture, which is conducted every five years, provides uniform, comprehensive data used by policymakers and media alike as they aim to better understand the practices, circumstances and impact of America’s farming and ranching industries. Offering a plethora of information on a wide variety of areas, this analysis can be used to show those who create the policies and regulations impacting farmers the scope of possible ramifications.
“NCGA membership hit many new records in 2014 due, in part, to the appreciation farmers have for our work on the Hill. Clearly, NCGA’s more than 42,000 members feel strongly about the need to have a voice in shaping legislation and regulation at the federal level,” said Bowling. “Yet, as constituents, we must each do our individual part to amplify the message until it rings through the halls of the Capitol. I urge every farmer to take a moment to look at this data and consider the estimable impact that they have in their own Congressional district. Then, I urge them to explain to the federal representation that they elect what they have found. Together, we can create incredible change, but we have to hold our officials accountable to the voters who send them to Washington.”
To view the report and find out more about your district’s agricultural industry, click here.