September 27, 2017

Showing up with Sec. Perdue

Topic: Leadership

September 27, 2017: NDFB had an opportunity to visit with USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue yesterday, which is why this Dialogue is a day late.

Download the Showing up with Secretary Perdue mp3

Read the transcript:

The world is run by those who show up. Because showing up means that you make your voice known. And at NDFB, we pride ourselves in making our voice known for the benefit of farmers and ranchers and all North Dakota citizens.

The opportunity we were given this week to meet with Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue was one of those times where it was our duty and obligation to show up on behalf of North Dakota farmers and ranchers.

We got to discuss issues with Secretary Perdue regarding wetlands, regarding the relationships between the Natural Resources Conservation Service and farmers and ranchers, and how to improve all those things.

Water management is a key to developing and increasing productivity and farmers and ranchers want to do it responsibly. Because their future and the generations coming after them, depend on the responsible use of natural resources.

So it isn’t that farmers and ranchers, like some folks want to say, want to skirt the rules or want to do things in ways that are harmful to the environment. Quite the opposite. The environment is what we depend on as farmers and ranchers.

That conversation with Secretary Perdue, albeit only a half an hour, was a half-hour to share the concerns of managing our soils and our land. He was very responsive.

I had the opportunity share with him how we have tried to improve relationships in North Dakota through a change that involves both agriculture groups and wildlife groups partnering with NRCS to provide the technical assistance on the ground for farmers and ranchers when it comes to voluntary conservation programs.

Two-hundred and twenty thousand acres of conservation on the ground in the last year, with that model, which right now is only in North Dakota, that was one of the issues where the secretary said, “We definitely want more information on that.”

We’re not looking at running the world here, from NDFB. We’re just looking at making sure that farmers and ranchers in North Dakota have an equitable opportunity to make a living on their land, which in turn will make North Dakota successful. And at NDFB, we do show up.  

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