Answering a challenge made earlier by Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack, The National FFA Officer team has shared their recommendation for the new farm bill. Their recommendations fell under four main categories. Those are: Getting started in production agriculture; creating vibrant rural communities; who should care about agriculture and why; and planning for the future.
The challenge the Secretary presented to the FFA was to, work with fellow students and the adult leadership of the organization to develop a series of recommendations around the upcoming Farm Bill that will encourage more young people to pursue careers in farming. National FFA President Riley Pagett, says – never before had we been invited to submit direct input that could enhance the ability of agricultural education and FFA to help students succeed and strengthen American agriculture.
Items that were recommended were as follows: USDA and other agencies should encourage and assist beginning farmers to start or continue in production agriculture; USDA should help transition farms from older related and non-related farmers to younger of beginner farmers who may not come from a farm; USDA should help keep young people in rural communities and make rural communities an even more important part of our nation’s economy and society; USDA should support efforts to increase the public’s knowledge of agricultural literacy; USDA should strengthen the capacity of agricultural education to produce more students that pursue production agriculture and other agriculturally related careers and the USDA should provide authority, responsibility and support for school-based agricultural education and FFA.