Open Mic Replay - An Extensive Catalog of Our Audio Interviews

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Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam-UC Davis
This week's guest on Open Mic is Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam, a genomics and biotechnology researcher at the University of California, Davis. Her work in animal breeding was inspired by Dr. Norman Borlaug's efforts to resolve hunger issues with genetically engineered plants. Van Eenennaam believes science has been left out of the debate over how foods should be labeled saying nutritional benefits are more important than how ingredients from plant varieties were bred. Van Eenennaam notes a difference in society's acceptance of biotechnology in medicine versus that in food production where genetic engineering may provide the only sustainable solution to feeding a growing planet.

Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam-UC Davis
This week's guest on Open Mic is Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam, a genomics and biotechnology researcher at the University of California, Davis. Her work in animal breeding was inspired by Dr. Norman Borlaug's efforts to resolve hunger issues with genetically engineered plants. Van Eenennaam believes science has been left out of the debate over how foods should be labeled saying nutritional benefits are more important than how ingredients from plant varieties were bred. Van Eenennaam notes a difference in society's acceptance of biotechnology in medicine versus that in food production where genetic engineering may provide the only sustainable solution to feeding a growing planet.

John Weber, President NPPC
This week's guest on Open Mic is John Weber, President of the National Pork Producers Council. In this interview, Weber speaks to opportunities and challenges on the horizon for the nation's swine industry. While global demand for protein, especially pork, continues to grow, Weber and members of the NPPC adamantly support the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement to grant greater market access to growth markets. At home, Weber says pork producers face challenges from the USDA's pending GIPSA proposal, the EPA on WOTUS rules, the country's preparedness to infectious animal disease, the industry's effort to further reduce antibiotics in swine production and a domestic inventory that could soon meet or exceed the nation's slaughter capacity.

Carl Casale, Pres. and CEO CHS, Inc.
This week's guest on Open Mic is Carl Casale, President and CEO of CHS Inc. The cyclical pendulum has brought the ag industry from record highs to lows not seen since the early 1980's. In this week's interview, Carl Casale shares a view that the industry hasn't yet seen the bottom of the income swing. Despite the current challenge, Casale shares a bright view for the next generation of the industry with tremendous turnover in producer demographics. Casale says CHS is pro-trade but believes the U.S. must step up spending on infrastructure to stay competitive.

Chris Novak - CEO National Corn Growers Assn.
This week's guest on Open Mic is Chris Novak, CEO of the National Corn Growers Association. In this week's interview, Novak shares the global vision of the NCGA's most recent strategic planning process and the Washington legislative agenda including continued work on a national GMO food labeling standard. He also reacts to negative opinions on global trade from the campaign trail and shares why the Renewable Fuel Standard is about giving consumers better environmental choices and not limiting the auto industry's choices to meet new economic and environmental standards.

Senator Cory Gardner - Colorado
This week's guest on Open Mic is Colorado US Senator Cory Gardner. With a family farm machinery business in operation for over a century, Senator Gardner shares his experience with the cyclical nature of the agriculture industry and the need for farmers to have access to new advances in technology to remain productive and profitable. In this week's discussion Gardner shares thoughts on the EPA's new water rules and his view that water issues should be resolved at the state level. The Colorado Republican shares his view of the Endangered Species Act, the need for continued investment in the nation's highways and rail lines and why he supports free trade agreements.

Senator Cory Gardner - Colorado
Our guest this week on Open Mic is Colorado U.S. Senator Cory Gardner. With a family farm machinery business in operation for over a century, Senator Gardner shares his experience with the cyclical nature of the agriculture industry and the need for farmers to have access to new advances in technology to remain productive and profitable. In the discussion this week Gardner shares thoughts on the EPA and their new water rules and his view that water issues should be resolved at the state level. The Colorado Republican shares his view of the Endangered Species Act, the need for continued investment in the highways and rail lines of our nation and why he supports free trade agreements.

Senator John Boozman- Arkansas
This week's guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator John Boozman. As the U.S. Congress returns to Capitol Hill this week, the Arkansas Republican expects much attention will be devoted to the appropriations process with a view of accomplishing the major work on spending bills before the end of the fiscal year. In this week's interview, Senator Boozman shares his view on crafting federal rules on GMO food labeling, funding sources for the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, the need for fair trade agreements and calls for flexibility in child nutrition standards. Senator Boozman says the appointment of a Supreme Court nominee adds to the agenda of the race for the White House in 2016.

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell
This week's guest on Open Mic is US Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell. In this exclusive interview, the Kentucky Republican shares a very dismal view for approving a new trade agreement this year and his plans to see the appropriations process complete under regular order. McConnell shares his frustration with the Obama administration's environmental agenda and thoughts on finding a compromise on federal preemption legislation to prevent state labeling laws on foods with ingredients from genetically enhanced crops.

Representative Robert Aderholt - Alabama
This week's guest is Alabama 4th District Representative Robert Aderholt, who chairs the House Appropriations subcommittee on agriculture. In this week's interview, Aderholt discusses his views on how appropriators addressed issues like SNAP benefits, rural development, sodium restrictions, additional testing for antibiotics in livestock production, crop insurance and funds to educate consumers on genetically engineered crops - and some of the challenges ahead when the bill hits the House floor, perhaps as early as next month.

US Trade Ambassador Michael Froman and Kevin Kester, VP NCBA
This week's Open Mic features U.S. Trade Ambassador Michael Froman and Kevin Kester, a California beef producer and vice president of the National Cattlemen's Beef Association. In this interview, Froman and Kester layout what they say are the short- and long-term advantages of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement. Ambassador Froman talks about the effect TPP will have on China and potential consequences of failing to ratify the trade deal. Froman and Kester also preview the next round of trade discussions with Europe in the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership talks later this month in New York.

Shirley Bloomfield, CEO of NTCA - Rural Broadband Assoc.
This week's guest on Open Mic is Shirley Bloomfield, CEO of NTCA-The Rural Broadband Association. The Federal Communications Commission followed last year's designation of broadband as a utility with additional support for internet service providers to bring communications to a larger section of rural America. In this week's interview, Bloomfield discusses the complicated decisions involved with providing greater broadband access to farmers, rural businesses, schools, hospitals and more. But big questions remain on who supports those new revenue streams and if funding caps will allow companies to maintain affordable service for rural residents.

Kendal Frazier, CEO of National Cattlemen's Beef Assoc.
This week's guest on Open Mic features Kendal Frazier, CEO of the National Cattlemen's Beef Association. In this informative interview, Frazier responds to the challenges presented by the EPA's WOTUS rules and how new ozone standards can be a detriment to land management. On trade, Frazier says the TPP agreement must be ratified by Congress to maintain markets and gain access to the globe's growing middle class. Frazier shares thoughts on a voluntary COOL proposal, the need for congressional action on endangered species laws and the ongoing effort with the CME group to address market volatility.

Paul Johnson, Co-Chair U.S. Ag Coalition for Cuba
This week's guest on Open Mic is Paul Johnson, co-chair of the U.S. Ag Coalition for Cuba. President Obama's historical trip to Havana last week was another step in the administration's effort to normalize relations between the U.S. and our closest Communist neighbor to the south. In this interview, Johnson says Cuban policy is no longer somebody else's issue. Johnson believes Cuban trade policy has implications throughout Latin America and says Secretary Vilsack has changed the game toward better relations between the two countries and in establishing new market opportunities between the two sides.

Senator John Thune- SD
This week's guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator John Thune. In this interview, the South Dakota Republican shares his frustration with the chamber's failure to craft a national voluntary labeling bill for foods that contain ingredients from genetically enhanced crops. Senator Thune points attention to the role the minority must play in bringing the issue to a successful conclusion. Thune also addresses President Obama's plan to cut crop insurance funding and questions the administration's commitment to seeing congressional approval of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal. While Senator Thune supports additional trade with Cuba, he has reservations about the steps President Obama has taken to normalize trading between the two countries.



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