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Make Advocating for Agriculture a New Year’s Resolution

Resolutions are all about making a point to do something in the upcoming year. Isabella Chism chairs the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Women’s Leadership Committee and talks about why agricultural advocacy should be among the top resolutions for 2023.

“If the landscape alone doesn’t tell you that we need to be advocating for agriculture than we need to look around at some of our farm families that are struggling because of higher input costs, supply chain issues with getting parts for equipment that may be older or maybe not even available, as well as other things. And if we don’t talk about our story and what’s happening to us and to our neighbors, then no one else is going to do that.”

She says advocating for agriculture is vital because ag is a small part of the country’s population. There are a lot of ways farmers and ranchers can get involved in advocacy.

“All the way down to the youngest children in school taking an ag literate book to school. We can have our legislators read books throughout the season that they’re running for election and reelection and get them some free media exposure because they’re reading an ag-accurate book that we gave them to read and created the opportunity for them.”

Advocacy will be even more important in the new year as 48 percent of the new congress has never been through a farm bill process before.

“This gives us as farmers the opportunity to be the lead voice, but we have to step up and offer our opinion, not wait to be asked our opinion. Then once we get a farm bill, it’s critical that we continue to push toward the things that we need and being realistic in the expectation, living with what we have, trying to make it better, and not always just complaining about what isn’t there, but pushing toward that end with a logical result in mind.”

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