Grateful for the opportunities of the past two years leading M&P - Indiana Corn and Soy

Grateful for the opportunities of the past two years leading M&P

Wow, how time flies! As I get to the end of my two-year term as Chair of the Membership & Policy Committee (M&P) on the ISA board, I look back at all the opportunities I have had and the contacts that I have made. I am very grateful for this time and want to thank everyone who has made this opportunity such a blessing. I can’t wait to get involved in the next opportunity that comes along as I continue my term as an ISA director.

As we go into winter and plan for next year’s crop, repair equipment and haul grain, remember to attend a meeting. There is always time to learn something and stay up to date on what is new. Here at ISA we just wrapped up the Ag Policy Forum, which reviews policy and regulative issues that affect us as farmers. The topic for this year’s forum was focused on supply chain problems and related transportation issues.

ISA Membership & Policy Committee Chair Mike Koehne, at left, and ISA Senior Director of Industry Affairs Steve Howell, center, talk with U.S. Rep. Greg Pence on Koehne’s farm.

Mike Steenhoek, the executive director of the Soy Transportation Coalition (STC), gave us an update on the recently signed $1.2 trillion federal infrastructure bill and how it is good for farmers. Steenhoek stated that more than half of this will go to major road and bridge projects, ports and inland waterways upgrades, freight railroads and airport plans and electric infrastructure development.

Some of these funds will be spent in rural areas, which is positive for farmers. This should help us move our products faster, easier and help our bottom line.

I have had the privilege of serving on the STC board with Mike Steenhoek for the past several years and they do a lot of influential work for the soybean industry. The STC is like the ISA M&P committee, the American Soybean Association or any other policy group, they rely on the involvement of hardworking farmers like you and me.

Nearly 100 people attended the Ag Policy Forum earlier this month. That figure included some industry partners such as equipment dealers and chemical manufacturers. Also attending were interested stakeholders such as legislative staff members from Sen. Mike Braun, Sen. Todd Young, Rep. Jim Banks, Rep. Jim Baird, Rep. Larry Bucshon and state lawmakers, too.

The largest group that attended were farmers who care about the future of their farms. This group asked the tough questions of the speakers, shared their opinions with legislative staff members and offered their views to the industry partners.

This is where the value of belonging to the ISA Membership & Policy Committee pays off. When we are active, expressing our opinions to those who can impact our farms, we are helping to protect and shape the present and future of Indiana agriculture.

So this winter, plan to attend a winter meeting that will help impact your farm. And remember as we enjoy this holiday season, how blessed we are and thankful to live in the greatest country in the world full of opportunities. Keep voicing your opinion and making difference.

Wishing you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.






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