According to press reports , the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is announcing today that it will delay a decision on the use of E15 in cars and pickup trucks built from 2001 to 2006 by up to a month. The delay is a result of testing failures unrelated to fuel and E15. Earlier this fall, EPA announced E15 was safe for use in cars and pickup trucks built in 2007 and later.
National Ag Groups form Alliance
If you haven’t heard of before now, it will soon be a household word -- US Farmers & Ranchers Alliance. American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman is also the chairman of the executive committee of USFRA:
“This is the first time, in history, as far as I know, that all of the producer groups, essentially all of the producer groups have come together under one roof and have agreed to move together with common cause. And the common cause is simply to increase consumer trust in today’s American agriculture; to allow farmers and ranchers the freedom to operate in a responsible, sustainable, and also economical manner; and also to increase collaboration with other elements of our society involved in sort of the food debates -- the dieticians, the environmentalists.”
This group has come together after nearly a year of meetings and negotiations.
Stallman explains the group’s goal:
“We have had these attacks, these critics of today’s American agriculture, they’ve gained some traction with consumers because consumers don’t understand what we do because they’re too far removed from the farm. We don’t want to loose ground to those activist efforts that frankly, are misguided and use misinformation, and the only way we’re going to be able to accomplish something is to pool our resources to come up with a campaign of sufficient scope and duration and a focus to cause the needle to move in terms of consumer trust in American agriculture.”
There are 23 national ag groups participating thus far. Stallman says there’s more on the way:
“Basically all the producer groups, we have 23 groups total. Whether you’re talking about all the crops, corn, soybean, cotton, sugar, all the livestock groups; we’ve got the whole list. And we’re inviting more, some of the groups haven’t had the opportunity for their boards to make a decision. The key in all of this as been to get everybody together and to get everybody to hold together on a common message that we can hold and deliver.”
Stallman says that the group is working in the present, educating the public, but looking to the future:
“Yes, to educate the public, and create the consumer trust in the production systems we use. You know, we’re going to have to feed a world of over 9 billion people by 2050, have to produce at least 70% more food on the same number of acres, that takes technology, that takes productivity increases. And all the benefits of the way we produce food, fiber and fuel aren’t understood by consumers and we need to help them understand better the benefits of that system.”
To learn more go to AFBF’s website, www.fb.org.
AFBF President, Bob Stallman