Last week I spent some time in Washington, D.C. visiting with my elected officials on issues that will impact my family farm. It was a good trip but I really missed being with my family and working on the farm. I couldn’t wait to get home on Thursday night. However, my children’s future to farm depends on me taking the time to engage in conversations with lawmakers so I knew it was important to be away from my family and go to our nation’s Capital.
When I got to my desk on Friday morning I had a mountain of paperwork to sort through…..WELCOME HOME! Everyone asked me all day long if it was worth it to be gone when I spent a week preparing to be gone and another week catching up.
My response was YES! I am a firm believer in showing up to represent my family farm and all of agriculture every chance I get. The world is led by those who show up and I want to make sure my family farm is around for generations to come. Agriculture has changed so much in the last 30 years and I want lawmakers and regulators to understand these changes and see first hand how farmers care for their livestock and environment. I don’t want a lobbyist or factory fundraising machine from D.C. trying to tell my family farm story for me. No one can tell our family story but us.
It’s true that I spent the last three days playing catch up on the farm but I know the value of agriculture to our nation’s security and it’s my responsibility to make sure others understand this too. We all have to eat and I want to make sure my kids are eating food grown in America, not Brazil or Argentina or another country. I want my kids to be a part of feeding America so they never have to depend on foreign soil for food like we do oil.
I hope some day my kids will live in a world where people understand the value of technology in agriculture to feed a growing population. Until that day comes I will continue to engage in conversations so people can hear the accurate story of how we produce safe food for our family and other families. My family is proud of our farm and we are happy to help feed our friends and neighbors. If you had bacon, ham or a pork chop in the last few days, thank you for supporting a hog farmer like me and my family, we appreciate you!