Nearly 6,000 participate in this year’s virtual Commodity Classic - Indiana Corn and Soy

Nearly 6,000 participate in this year’s virtual Commodity Classic

For the first time in its history, this year’s Commodity Classic, March 2-5, was a virtual-only event due to COVID-19 gathering restrictions. The online conference remained popular with farmers from across the country. Nearly 6,000 people from 49 states and 24 countries registered for the 2021 Special Edition of Commodity Classic. Attendees represented more than 4,000 farms.

Commodity Classic highlights include a keynote address from USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, a conversation between the farmer-leaders of the four commodity associations that present Commodity Classic, as well as the ag chair of the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, and executive roundtables featuring top agribusiness leaders. Dozens of other sessions focused on topics such as marketing, mental health, weather, trade, soil health and more. Additionally, sponsors showcase their latest innovations, services and products.

“This year’s successful digital event was the result of an outstanding team effort,” said Anthony Bush, an Ohio corn farmer and co-chair of the 2021 Commodity Classic. “The cooperation, collaboration and dedication among our sponsors, our associations, our farmer-leaders and the Commodity Classic staff proved just how important this event is to everyone involved. Everyone was committed to its success — and it showed.”

Established in 1996, Commodity Classic is presented annually by the American Soybean Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Association of Wheat Growers, National Sorghum Producers and the Association of Equipment Manufacturers.

The next Commodity Classic is scheduled for March 10-12, 2022, in New Orleans, La.

ASA delegates debate views for next policy book

The American Soybean Association had its last annual Voting Session on March 25, 2020. While normally in-person and in conjunction with Commodity Classic, this year’s Voting Session was virtual and delegates from across the country logged on and voted via Zoom. Indiana’s voting delegates were Kevin Burbrink, Seymour; Kendell Culp, Rensselaer; Elaine Gillis, Dunkirk; Mike Koehne, Greensburg; Phil Ramsey, Shelbyville; Joe Steinkamp, Evansville; Larry Wilkinson, Kimmell; and Craig Williams, Oaktown.

The voting body considered resolutions on a wide range of topics including farm programs and crop insurance, crop protection, production standards, food policy, biodiesel production, infrastructure, industry research and development, conservation practices and carbon management, tax policy and trade priorities. The ASA Policy Book will be updated with the changes made by the voting delegate body and will soon be available to members on the ASA Membership portal at www.soygrowers.com

NCGA adds new ethanol language to annual policy book

The National Corn Growers Association had its biannual Corn Congress “virtually” on March 1-2, as it did with its July 2020 Corn Congress. Voting delegates from across the country joined by Zoom to debate the resolutions submitted to amend the NCGA Policy Book. Indiana voting delegates were Mike Beard, Frankfort; Sarah Delbecq, Auburn (day 1); Tyler Everett, Lebanon (day 2); David Ring, Huntingburg; J.R. Roesner, Ferdinand; and Luke Schnitker, Seymour.

While delegates considered many policies, including trade, farm programs and sustainability practices, the resolution receiving the longest debate was a 95 RON fuels standard proposal submitted by Nebraska. Delegates engaged in thoughtful and passionate discussion for more than 90 minutes before passing the resolution.

ICGA President Mike Beard spoke in favor of the resolution, and said, “We believe this resolution is needed to move to the next level of ethanol usage. Establishing a 95 RON minimum using ethanol blends of 15 percent or greater in the finished fuel will lead to increased corn grind in the near-term since the fuel is compatible with most vehicles on the road today. Moving to 15 percent minimum ethanol blend is a big win for corn farmers.”

Corn Congress will convene again July 14 and 15 at the Capital Hilton Hotel in Washington, D.C. The NCGA Policy Book will be updated and soon be available at www.ncga.com/take-action/policy-book.

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