Today is “National Agriculture Day,” a time set aside to put the spotlight on America’s farmers. The executive director of the U.S.D.A. Farm Service Agency, John Whitaker, says farmers have been a bright spot in the economic recovery. “It is agriculture in the midwest that is helping lead the national economy out of one of the worst, or the worst recessions since the great depression,” Whitaker says.
Whitaker says the ag economy has continued to push things ahead while other industries slowed. “We’re at record farm income, have been at record farm income for two years in a row. Those kinds of things create jobs,” Whitaker says. “Of course with one in twelve jobs tied to agriculture, having a robust ag economy helps lift us up.”
Iowa is at the forefront as the nation’s leader in the production of corn, soybeans, eggs and hogs. And much of that production is exported.”The record exports that we’ve been doing, gives us an opportunity to help feed the world and help to show the world the quality of products produced in America,” according to Whitaker.
The global population is projected to reach nine-billion people by 2050. The challenge — experts say — will be for agriculture to produce 40% more from existing acres in order to feed that forecasted population.
By Dan Skelton, KICD, Spencer