Here's your Audio Corn Scoops, a weekly update from the office of the Illinois Corn Growers Association and the Illinois Corn Marketing Board. John Kiefner, a farmer in Will County, talks about his support for increasing the corn checkoff rate. Kiefner testified last week at the Department of Agriculture’s hearing on the request for a referendum.
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There are four specific areas that Directors of the IL Corn Marketing Board are concerned with because of a lack of resources:
- Take action to address the nation’s inadequate & failing river transportation (locks & dams) system by elevating the public discussion to bring more awareness
- We are one catastrophic failure away from basis widening like never before, with the river system maxed-out on exporting farm goods and importing inputs, making every bushel of corn less valuable and more expensive to produce
- Panama Canal expansion and other international upgrades mean the US cannot compete as a preferred provider
- Actively engage and dispute with hard evidence the U.S. EPA enacting nonsense burdens on water and air quality, impeding your “Right to Farm”
- Document the improvements and positive impacts of voluntary farmer efforts and best management practices as they evolve over time
- Prepare Illinois to protect and defend against a “Chesapeake Bay” style attack against fall applied nitrogen, tiling systems, NPDES permits, etc.
- Strengthen the trust and relationships between urban and rural Illinoisans, creating and maintaining a positive perception of farmers and farming, both crops and livestock
- Well-educated urbanites get their information about farming while driving by farms and seeing seed company signs on a “corporate farm” or by speaking with the farmer at a farmers’ market, comparing all other farmers to that one person
- Chicago influential moms (voters, peer leaders, thought leaders) believe less than half of all IL farms are owned/operated by families, when the reality is 95%
- Initiate programs, provide necessary research, and pursue full market penetration for E-15
- Stagnant ethanol demand means lost markets, E-15 can absorb increased corn yields, protecting against downward price pressure based on larger carryout
- Assist in the process of removing regulatory and statutory obstacles that are arbitrarily blocking the advancement of higher ethanol blends
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