Iowa Farm Bureau president, Craig Lang, spoke to members at their annual meeting Thursday and talked about treasuring the resources that farmers have and spreading the word about their importance to the country.
Lang says it’s not only informing the consumers about what they do and why they do it and how they care for livestock and the land. He says it’s also about sustaining the system by transferring the assets to the next generation. Lang says planning for the next generation is a major challenge.
“Everybody talks about the sustainablity of agriculture, and we are not putting enough focus right now on the sustainability of the population,” Lang says. He says we need a lot of young families to come to the state and need to create parallel jobs to agriculture to help draw them here and fill the need for young families. Lang says the Iowa Farm Bureau is starting to do that in the policies that it is creating.
He says one of the examples are the direct payments in the 2012 farm bill where they said the payments shouldn’t be direct cash to lanowners or the renter, they should be in the form of revenue protection that gives young farmers an opportunity. Lang says it is a big challenge face by agriculture at every level.
Lang says from the state level with budget problems to the federal level that also has budget problems. He says for example, they could not support the federal tax legislation because it “didn’t include anything that reduced estate taxes.” Lang is a dairy farmer from Brooklyn.