There are 8 item(s) tagged with the keyword "Capitol Hill".
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It’s September. Growing up on the farm that always meant a few things were certain – the corn harvest would start, the air would become crisper and there was a lot of work to do as the days got shorter. In Washington, there is also a level of excitement this time of year as it means Congress is in a mad dash to complete its work before the end of the fiscal year. This year is shaping up to be the same for my family back on the farm and in Congress.
With the kick-off of the American Feed Industry Association’s new fiscal year comes new priorities within the legislative and regulatory areas as set by the association’s Board of Directors. These priorities set the course for our work advocating on behalf of the membership at the state, federal and international levels. Here is a brief overview of the categories we will focus on this year.
It is an honor to begin my new role as chair of the American Feed Industry Association Board of Directors. The opportunity to serve in this position is both exciting and humbling.
Although I was raised in northern Indiana, my early years did not provide me with an awareness of the feed industry. Driving through soybean fields, eating sweet corn from roadside stands and the yearly visit to the “you-pick” strawberry patch was the limit of my exposure to the agricultural industry. My introduction ended up being through a random conversation leading to an entry-level job opportunity with a local agricultural equipment manufacturer, Laidig Systems, Inc. in Mishawaka, Ind. Over 40 years later, it is difficult to imagine serving a more rewarding industry.
Goals. They are an important part of being successful in any job or project. I set goals in my job, personal life and for my physical fitness. My kids set them for the sports they play. Not only is it important to set goals, but also to share those goals with someone who can hold you accountable. Now, imagine you are the president of the United States. You set those goals, both long- and short-term goals, and you share them with the public – and the forces then start going to work – who are either with you or against you.
Last week, we all settled into our home office chairs to listen to industry experts discuss important issues affecting the animal food industry. As a former Seattleite, I was looking forward to seeing industry colleagues in the Emerald City this past March for the American Feed Industry Association’s Purchasing and Ingredient Suppliers Conference, which was canceled due to the coronavirus pandemic, but the webinar series that replaced it did not disappoint!
What is this this “new normal” we keep hearing so much about? We’re all still trying to figure out what “the new normal” means for each of us, but I know that I’m tired of saying it and I think we can all agree that we are tired of hearing it. However, looking through the lens of the advocacy world, the closer I look, the more it seems that not much has actually changed.
Last week, the American Feed Industry Association’s Board of Directors met to gavel in the new chair, induct new Board members as well as set the association’s legislative and regulatory (L&R) policy agenda for the next AFIA fiscal year, which runs from May 1, 2020-April 30, 2021. These policy priorities dictate how the eight-person L&R team will spend their time for the next year representing the animal feed and pet food industry before Capitol Hill, the White House and domestic and international regulatory bodies. The association is always nimble to adjust to the immediate policy need, like with the response to COVID-19, but these key priorities guide the association’s strategic activities to benefit the industry.
Last week in Washington proved to be a busy one as the American Feed Industry Association saw success on two major policy priorities, the signing of a phase one trade agreement with China and the Senate’s passage of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA). Both agreements are critically important tools of foreign market access for the U.S. animal food industry, but equally important is the momentum they bring toward finally getting things done in a Congress that has been frustratingly gridlocked.
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