Five growers from NCSPA’s board went to Capitol Hill last week to agvocate for North Carolina ag. The week kicked off with a visit with Ray Starling, USDA Chief of Staff. Starling, a North Carolina native, heard and related to the concerns of our growers. The following day the group meet with Congressmen David Rouzer and Richard Hudson as well as legislative aides from Representative GK Butterfield, Rep. Patrick McHenry, Rep. Mark Walker, Rep. Walter Jones, Rep. Ted Budd, Rep. David Price, Senator Richard Burr and Senator Thom Tillis’ offices.
In light of the recent federal court rulings that hog farms in North Carolina have been deemed a nuisance, our growers made sure to express their concern during the meeting and urge the representatives to think about what this could mean not only for North Carolina’s economy but also the effects on a national scale. Trade was also a key topic during the discussions given the recent 25% tariffs imposed on agricultural products by China in retaliation to the administration’s tariffs on Chinese goods. The group also made sure to show their appreciation to the Congressmen on their work and support of the recent Farm Bill and to gauge what the next steps were for the bill.
The evening ended with an NC Soy Reception, hosted by the association, to thank all of the congressional representatives and staff for their work with North Carolina agriculture. It was a great week spent advocating for NC ag and we are proud of our growers for representing home in the finest way.