Largest Commodity Classic Ever in the Books

The 2013 Commodity Classic is in the books, having wrapped up Saturday in Kissimmee, Florida. CEO of the North Carolina Soybean Producers Association, Charles Hall:

“We have registered 6200 people here so that makes it the biggest Commodity Classic ever.”

Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack was the keynote speaker of the General Session Friday. Hall attended the session and said Vilsack was adamant that USDA would persevere through the current shenagans in Washington:

"He didn’t make any new policy announcements. He did comment on the sequester and the need to do a continuing resolution on the budget. He commented on how USDA will move forward through all of that. A few things he said, for example, is that they will focus on being equitable and fair. They have some challenges but will continue the programs that work well for rural America. He pointed out that USDA is a big bureaucracy with a lot of employees and they will be looking to make sure their employees come out ok.”

Pam Johnson, President of the Corn Board of the National Corn Growers Association, along with the farmer leaders of the other three participating organizations also spoke. Hall says that Johnson made an effort to put the concept of sustainability into a context everyone could get their arms around:

"Sustainability has come up a lot at the conference. We have had a lot of learning sessions on it and how to implement it on the farm. Johnson said, at the end of the day its about always increasing the productivity of the land. Its about using technology to maximize the efficiency of the plant, minimizing the inputs and maximizing the use of sun and water. Its most important to make sure that the land tomorrow is as productive or more productive that it has been today.”

Johnson, according to Hall, also reiterated that our congressional representatives are not mind readers, and encouraged farmers to speak out on the issues:

“She really challenged the farmer audience to be directly involved. She pointed out to the farmers that one of the ways congressional staff tracks issues is how many phone calls they get. So its really important to make your voice heard.”

Charles Hall, CEO of the North Carolina Soybean Producers Association from the 2013 Commodity Classic in Kissimmee, Florida is dedicated to serving the agricultural industry in the Carolinas and Virginia with the latest ag news, exclusive regional weather station readings, and key crop market information. The website is a companion of the Southern Farm Network, provider of daily agricultural radio programming to the Carolinas since 1974. presents radio programs, interviews and news relevant to crop and livestock production and research throughout the mid-Atlantic agricultural community.