Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue’s recent comments at the World Dairy Expo on Tuesday about the fate of small dairy farms have sparked a backlash spanning several days.
“In America, the big get bigger and the small go out,” Perdue said, according to the Associated Press. “I don’t think in America, we for any small business, we have a guaranteed income or guaranteed profitability.”
As a result of this statement and others said, there was widespread coverage carried by national and local news and did not go well on Ag Twitter, where criticism was rampant.
“What I heard today from the secretary of agriculture was there’s no place for me,” said one farmer, who spoke at a news conference organized by the state Democratic Party, the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reported.
A department spokesperson for the USDA pointed to a tweet sent Wednesday from Perdue’s account of a local TV news clip featuring additional remarks from the secretary. “There is no doubt there has been economic stress in the dairy industry but we believe better days are ahead,” the tweet said.
Perdue is launching a new podcast today called “Sonnyside of the farm.” His first guest is Sarah Huckabee Sanders, the former White House press secretary who is now a Fox News contributor and believed to be considering a run for governor in Arkansas. Perdue tweeted Thursday that the interview with Huckabee Sanders is “about her time as Press Sec and how much @realDonaldTrump loves America’s farmers and ranchers.”