This week’s Open Mic guest is Jackie Applegate, president of Bayer Crop Science North America. On the sidelines of the recent Farm Progress Show in Decatur, Illinois, Applegate discussed many of the company's latest efforts, including a collaboration to help fight hunger, the latest innovations from Bayer, new partnerships with other companies, ongoing challenges from regulations in the U.S. and pushback from technologies by other nations of the world. Applegate shares the need for public and private research to develop production techniques to achieve sustainability goals as well as increases in productivity.
This week’s Open Mic guest is Rep. Mike Bost, R-Ill. On the sidelines of the 70th Annual Farm Progress Show in Decatur, Illinois, the House Ag Republican discussed the congressional agenda leading to the end of the fiscal year. Bost says the farm bill is critical to his district, and after spending time with House Ag Chair Glenn "G.T." Thompson, Bost believes new policy will be introduced soon after legislators return this month. In this interview, Bost discusses the nation’s infrastructure, broadband, electrical grid, renewable fuels and rural healthcare.
This week’s Open Mic guest is Tim Trotter, CEO of Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative. It’s a perfect storm of policymaking as USDA has begun hearings to explore Federal Milk Marketing Order reforms and Congress is working to write a new farm bill. Dairy industry diversity is a blessing — representing various regions, size of operations and end uses for milk — but also marks significant challenges when considering producer supports and reform of marketing policy. Edge represents more than 800 members who ship primarily to private processors. Trotter says it will take a delicate balance to find the right solutions for both farmers and industry.
This week’s Open Mic guest is Adam Putnam, CEO of Ducks Unlimited. In this interview, Putnam outlines the headwinds facing the approval of a new farm bill and how important the language remains for the food and conservation needs of the nation. Ducks Unlimited is part of a diverse group representing agricultural, environmental, forestry, wildlife, nutrition and hunger advocates urging Congress to approve a farm bill this year. Putnam cites voluntary conservation programs with the nation’s farmers as a significant factor in increased waterfowl populations across North America.
This week’s Open Mic guest is Bruce Rastetter, founder and executive chairman of Summit Agricultural Group. Rastetter’s career includes feed sales, swine production and renewable fuels. In this interview, he speaks to headwinds to both the livestock production and renewable fuel sectors as well as opportunities for growth. He shares advice for future agricultural entrepreneurs and speaks to the need for a carbon pipeline and the ongoing challenges of gaining approval for its construction.
This week’s Open Mic guest is Shirley Bloomfield, CEO of NTCA-The Rural Broadband Association. Despite the work of several government agencies and billions of dollars of taxpayer dollars invested, there is still a significant number of Americans without broadband or adequate bandwidth to support effective service. Bloomfield says hundreds of for profit and non-profit companies are working to close the digital divide, but there are numerous terrain challenges as well as regulatory headwinds from Washington that stand in the way of providing service to rural areas. Bloomfield comments on the USDA’s ReConnect program and other supports from Washington that are helping to bring service to rural America.