Speaking at the Ohio Pork Producer Council’s (OPPC) annual meeting Tuesday, December 11, Chris Wall, Assistant Vice President, Domestic Public Policy for the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) said there are indications that Congress may actually do something before the end of the year that would satisfy both parties, including passing a 5-year Farm Bill. But the likelihood of that happening is in the hands of leadership.
“Chairwoman Stabenow and Chairman Lucas are working daily to have a product ready to go when leadership asks them,” said Wall. “It’s really just a will of leadership to make a commitment to pass this Farm Bill and make a commitment to America’s farmers.”
Looking to 2013, Wall tells Brownfield the major issues NPPC will be focusing on includes passing the 2012 Farm Bill, number two on their priority list will be energy policy and third an issue that could have a significant impact on pork producers, antibiotic usage.
“There’s going to be a vehicle moving through Congress that will allow our detractors a place to play mischief with antibiotic usage, so we’re going to have to a lot of work and education on that front as well,” Wall said.
What will make it somewhat more challenging is the fact that the debate will take place in committees not as familiar to agriculture.
“We’re going to be out of our comfort zone a little bit, but it’s incumbent upon us to nurture and foster those relationships and again it’s all about education,” said Wall. “Educating these members on the importance of tools that producers have to raise livestock.”