Many Illinois Corn Growers Association and Illinois Corn Marketing Board farmer leaders are participating in a National Corn Growers Association Action Team this week. The teams work together to address issue specific concerns that impact corn farmers in the U.S.
As an example, the Consumer Engagement Action Team thinks about the disconnect between farmers and their non-farm peers. They consider the opportunities for conversation and learning from each other. They design programs and write policy that will continue to help farmers and non-farmers connect.
The Stewardship Action Team studies the challenges farmers face in minimizing their environmental footprint and maximizing their conservation management techniques. They try to understand opportunities for farmers to have more access to cutting edge conservation research on a national level but also attempt to understand and mitigate regulatory pressures related to farms and conservation practices.
There are eight issue specific Action Teams in total.
These teams have input from farmers all over the U.S., in corn states from Texas to Maryland; from Illinois to Nebraska.
But Action Teams and our involvement in them is only one aspect of our relationship with the National Corn Growers Association.
At its core, the National Corn Growers Association exists to help farmers engage in a coordinated way in federal policy and regulatory initiatives. The National Corn Growers Association also helps corn farmers across the U.S. join their voices with other national industry efforts. As an example, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) was a member of a coalition that worked to build common sense GMO labeling laws in a way that the Illinois Corn Growers Association or even a regional or single corn farmer in Illinois could not.
NCGA and ICGA work together to inform policymakers, to promote the image of corn farmers, to understand the dynamics of federal regulatory issues or court cases, and to represent Illinois corn farmers as one important element of a national corn farmer movement.
NCGA and its 49 affiliated state organizations – of which Illinois is one - work together to create and increase opportunities for corn farmers.