North Carolina’s 13th district representative, George Holding spent some time with Southern Farm Network discussing what his seat on the House Foreign Relations Committee means to North Carolina agriculture:
“I have had the good fortune to work with Senator Helms for a number of years, he served as the chairman of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and he was always able to turn that influence back to NC – crops, companies, products that are doing business all over the world. We are fortunate in my district to be growing a lot of tobacco right now. The record crop of tobacco was in 2011. About 75% of that is exported and its important that we ensure world markets are open for all of our products.
Poultry is another important export, in order for that to grow its really a question of the second and third world countries become more fluent and have a higher disposable income, they want a higher quality of protein. With our huge poultry and hog operations here in NC we can supply those markets.
NC Farmers are small business people. The economy is something we need to get a handle on and I think the way to do that is to control government spending and debt. Everyone who is working on a small business knows you cannot spend more than you take in and unfortunately the federal government, 40 cents for every dollar is borrowed. That uncertainty over our economy impacts us all.
The third largest government expenditure is debt interest. If we have a tick up in interest rates that could go up significantly. If we get to that point, there is no way we can repay the debt and that will be a tragedy for all of us. It will be a vicious cycle of inflation and interest rates.”