March 21, 2012

Wild Hogs vs. Deer – Similar Issues Throughout U.S.

By Shannon Wietjes, Nebraska Corn Growers Association Intern
Water. Farm Bill. Animal rights. Environment. What do all of these have in common? Well, they are all issues that we face here in Nebraska every day. However, we aren’t alone in dealing with these issues. Recently, I had the opportunity to travel to Washington D.C. for National Ag Day Training through the 4-H program. Along with over 100 other college students representing youth organizations, such as Agriculture Future of America, FFA, 4-H and other organizations, I was able to express my concerns about these issues and many more to the decision makers in D.C.

Although some of our issues differed by the area of the country we came from (we have issues with overpopulation of deer in Nebraska…in the south they are overrun with wild hogs) major themes continued to pop up throughout our conversations. Corn producers want the Farm Bill to be passed just as much as the cotton producers. Water is a precious and necessary resource each person needs no matter what part of the country they live in. Protecting the environment is just as important for farmers in California as it is for us here in Nebraska. Issues within agriculture may differ slightly as you travel across the country, but we all face issues that need addressed.

This is something we need to remember – we are not alone. Sometimes in agriculture, we get wrapped up in our farms, in the issues that affect us at the local or state level and we think we are alone in the fight. However, people all over the nation are facing the same issues and are interested in helping agriculture improve as well. Each person’s voice and opinion is important, but if agriculture joins together and works to improve the industry as a whole, we will all benefit. So, even though we don’t have wild hogs running rampant here in Nebraska (I kind of wish we did, I love pigs!) we do have similar issues that can be changed if we work together. Less than 2% of the population of the U.S. produces the food for everyone else; we need to stick together to continue to feed the world!

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