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U.S. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack - 8/21/2016

This week's guest on Open Mic is U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. In this interview, Secretary Vilsack discusses the current cyclical swing in farm income and the policy decision Washington must consider to protect the nation's farms and ranches. Vilsack says congressional leaders must consider "need" over budget when considering the next farm bill. While the Trans-Pacific Partnership remains a priority for the Obama administration, Vilsack discusses options to secure congressional support for the deal and defines the ominous challenge of writing regulations to implement the nation's biotech disclosure law.

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Bill Buckner, Pres. Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation

Bill Buckner, Pres. Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation

This week's guest on Open Mic is Bill Buckner, President and CEO of the Samuel Roberts Noble Foundation and Board Chair for the National Soil Health Institute. In this interview, Buckner outlines a national effort to develop a standardized condition rating and testing for soil health. A standardized numeric value could help producers embrace agronomic practices, technology and cropping systems which could eventually be tied to risk protection plans and crop insurance as well as the overall value of farmland. With a common goal of advancing agriculture Buckner says the National Soil Health Institute is leading a chorus of farmers, scientists, farmers and industry toward better soil health and a stronger agriculture industry.

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