January 16, 2018

NPPC Backs Efforts To Revitalize Rural America

The Trump administration yesterday unveiled its blueprint for spurring rural development and prosperity, which includes efforts supported by the National Pork Producers Council.

Speaking at the annual meeting of the American Farm Bureau Federation in Nashville, the president revealed recommendations from his Ag and Rural Prosperity Task Force, including ones addressing the agricultural labor shortage, expanded broadband access for rural areas and regulations that have put a damper on the farm economy.

“Addressing workforce issues and federal rules and maintaining export markets, coupled with the recently approved tax cuts, will help revitalize rural America,” said NPPC President Ken Maschhoff, a pork producer from Carlyle, Ill. “President Trump, Agriculture Secretary Perdue and the team at the White House National Economic Council are to be commended for putting together a plan that will aid farmers and ranchers.”

The task force recommendations are in line with the priorities of the U.S. pork industry, which has been urging the administration to ease the regulatory burden on agriculture and business, to reform the U.S. visa system to make it easier to hire foreign workers and to maintain access to important export markets, including Canada, Mexico and South Korea.

The White House already has taken steps to help the heartland, announcing last June that it would rescind the Waters of the United States rule, which would have given the government broad jurisdiction over waters and lands; abandoning a proposal related to the buying and selling of livestock; and indicating last week that it would take a more-reasoned approach to applying an animal feed regulation to private mills.

“This administration recognizes that rural America plays a vital role in the U.S. economy and, importantly, in ensuring our food security, and it’s working to bolster the farm economy,” Maschhoff said. “It is taking actions that will allow us to do what we do best: produce the safest, most nutritious and most abundant food at the lowest cost in the world.”


Canadian Ag Minister Talks NAFTA at AFBF Convention in Nashville

Lawrence MacAulay, Canada’s Minister of Agriculture and Agri-Food, spoke at the opening session of the American Farm Bureau’s 2018 Annual Convention & IDEAg Trade Show in Nashville.

MacAulay, who is the first Canadian agriculture minister to speak to Farm Bureau members at an annual convention, said that trade, the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) and building on common interests are the three areas the U.S. and Canada should focus on.


MacAulay said the main objective is to do no harm to agriculture.


President Trump will speak to attendees at the Farm Bureau’s convention Monday afternoon.

Farmers and ranchers looking for Trump to promise not to withdraw from NAFTA will likely be disappointed, however.

A senior White House official said that Trump will reiterate his desire for trade deals he considers fairer to the U.S., but the president will focus on other issues during his speech in Nashville.

Instead, Trump is expected to tout his deregulatory efforts and endorse recommendations to wire rural America for people living in remote parts of the country.

Culver’s “Thank You Farmers” Project Surpasses $1.7 Million in Donations

CulversIn 2017, the nearly 650 Culver’s restaurants in 24 states and the chain’s support center donated over $400,000 to agricultural education initiatives in schools and organizations like the National FFA Organization, bringing Culver’s total Thank You Farmers® Project donations to date to more than $1.7 million.

Culver’s Thank You Farmers Project, which is entering its sixth year, is designed to thank the people who have made Culver’s the success it is today: the American farmer.

With the global population expected to increase from 7.6 to 9.8 billion by 2050, the world needs to rise to the challenge of feeding 29 percent more people using the same amount of land and water that we have today.

Those responsible for figuring out how to sustainably feed our growing population are likely currently sitting in classrooms, playing on playgrounds or yet to be born. The bottom line: Our youth are our future. That’s why Culver’s Thank You Farmers® Project was created to make sure we have enough wholesome food to serve our growing population by supporting agricultural education programs that encourage smart farming.


Of the total amount donated through Culver’s Thank You Farmers Project, approximately 75 percent has come from guests supporting local fundraising at Culver’s restaurants. The additional donated dollars come from Culver’s sponsorship and funding of initiatives that benefit the National FFA Organization and Foundation, which helps its more than 653,000 student members develop their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education.

“Whether it’s donating $1 on Scoops of Thanks Day, pledging support on our restaurant walls or dining with us on a fundraising day, every contribution—big or small—from our guests makes a difference,” said Jessie Kreke, Culver’s senior marketing manager, who’s seen firsthand how these donations have saved a high school ag program and brought tears of joy to the eyes of students who’ve received scholarships and can now afford to pursue a secondary education.

In 2018, Culver’s restaurants across the country will continue to fundraise for initiatives and organizations like FFA that work toward solutions for feeding our growing population. “To our guests who have supported the Thank You Farmers Project in the past and to those who will support it in the future: Thank you, from all of us at Culver’s,” said Kreke.

About Culver’s:

For over 30 years, Culver’s guests have been treated to cooked-to-order food made with farm-fresh ingredients and served with a smile. The ever-expanding franchise system now numbers nearly 650 family-owned and operated restaurants in 24 states. The restaurants’ nationally recognized customer service is based on small-town, Midwestern values, genuine friendliness and an unwavering commitment to quality. Signature items include the award-winning ButterBurger, made from fresh, never frozen beef, and Fresh Frozen Custard, including the famous Flavor of the Day program. For more information, visit www.culvers.com, www.culvers.com/facebook, www.twitter.com/culvers or www.instagram.com/culvers

About the National FFA Organization:

The National FFA Organization is a national youth organization of 653,359 student members as part of 8,568 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the U.S. Virgin Islands. The organization is supported by 344,239 alumni members in 2,051 local FFA alumni chapters throughout the U.S. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The National FFA Organization operates under a federal charter granted by the 81st United States Congress, and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The U.S. Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to state and local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the National FFA Organization online at FFA.org and on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and the official National FFA Organization blog.