This week’s guest on Open Mic is Ray Starling, Special Assistant to the President for Agriculture, Trade and Food Assistance. With a rich career demonstrating a strong advocacy for agriculture, North Carolina native Starling finds himself in the middle of critical decisions over global trade, renewable fuels, and future farm policy. Starling shares industry concerns over possible Chinese trade retaliation and understands the levity of a pending White House decision on the Renewable Fuel Standard. Starling says the report from the President’s Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity is a road map for the White House goals for rural America.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator Pat Roberts from Kansas. As Chair of the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, Roberts acknowledges the “rough patch” farmers and ranchers are in and the need for a timely approval of a bipartisan new farm bill. The Kansas Republican discusses the Trump administration trade agenda and possible government reaction to lost export sales. Roberts is paying close attention to administrative action on the Renewable Fuels Standard and does support efforts to protect the nation’s livestock herd from infectious diseases.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Dr. Jayson Lusk, Distinguished Professor and Head of the Agriculture Economics Department at Purdue University. With heightened debate on food and farm policy surrounding the development of a new farm bill, Dr. Lusk offers challenging insight about the relationship between political persuasion and food, work requirements for SNAP recipients and evolving preferences in meat consumption.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is U.S. Senator Joni Ernst. The Iowa Republican says farmer concerns over possible changes to the nation’s Renewable Fuel Standard are justified and continues to implore the White House to consider the negative impact of a RIN price cap on farm income. In this interview Senator Ernst discusses agriculture’s need for global market access and offers her concerns over the Trump administration’s decisions on trade negotiations and metals tariffs.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is John Heisdorffer, President of the American Soybean Association. Fresh from last week’s Commodity Classic meeting in Anaheim, John shares priorities for soybean growers in the coming farm bill debate, concerns about the implications of possible trade tariffs on top soybean customers and the need to embrace new technology for today’s farmers.
This week’s guest on Open Mic is Anne Hazlett, Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development at USDA. Rural prosperity has been a priority for the Trump administration with Secretary Sonny Perdue leading an Interagency Task Force on the matter. In this interview, Hazlett outlines key findings in the report and the need for public and private agencies to work together to resolve critical quality of life issues in rural America.