This week’s guest on Open Mic is John Becherer, CEO of the United Soybean Board. After more than 20 years of service to farmer leaders who oversee the nation’s soybean checkoff, Becherer will step down from his post at the end of 2017. In this interview, Becherer highlights two decades of growth as well as the challenges and opportunities that lie ahead for the soybean industry. As checkoffs face greater scrutiny, Becherer defends the farmer-led programs. Recently recognized as one of the top association executives, Becherer talks about what he’s learned association management.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Todd Van Hoose, President and CEO of the Farm Credit Council. Farmers and ranchers across the country continue to struggle in a down farm economy. In this week’s interview, Van Hoose emphasizes the need for a new farm bill with risk protection including Title One and crop insurance to see producers through this downturn. Van Hoose explains the need for change in the FSA loan program, expanded funding for rural development and an expansion of market access for U.S. commodities around the world.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator John Hoeven. Severe drought in his home state and across the Northern Plains heightens the need to secure risk management tools to protect farmers and ranchers. As agriculture chair on the Appropriations Committee and a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, Hoeven says the budget will be a challenge in writing a new farm bill. The North Dakota Republican says agriculture has a strong message to share on budget savings and a real need for protection given current challenges from revenue and potentially from global trade.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Dr. Ron DeHaven, President DeHaven Veterinary Solutions. A vast coalition of producer and allied industry groups are calling on congress to approve funds and establish a vaccine bank to protect the U.S. livestock industry from a potential outbreak of Foot and Mouth Disease. As a former Administrator of the USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and former CEO of the American Veterinary Medical Association, Dr. DeHaven outlines the vulnerability of the livestock industry, cites the implications of a single occurrence of the infectious viral disease and outlines how a ready supply vaccine could limit animal mortality and economic loss.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator Jon Tester. In this interview the Montana Democrat gives an update on drought conditions that are gripping his home state. Tester says the Trump administration’s comments on trade could easily be interpreted as a shift to protectionism. He fears the U.S. will fall behind by pursuing only bi-lateral trade agreements. Tester favors a strong farm safety net including crop insurance and discusses the need for adequate funding for rural development.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Tom Sleight, President and CEO of the U.S. Grains Council. Access to global markets is critical to the success of America’s agriculture industry. Global trading partners are accusing the Trump administration of shifting to a more protectionist trade attitude meanwhile pursuing bi-lateral and multi-later trade accords without the U.S. In this interview, Sleight responds to trade rhetoric and identifies other challenges the U.S. faces in maintaining global market share. Sleight also previews the group’s upcoming Summer meeting in Vancouver.