KEARNEY, NEB. – Despite major declines in Nebraska soybean exports, and reductions in both pork and wheat exports, the dollar value of Nebraska’s total agriculture exports increased from 2017 to 2018 thanks to significant boosts in sales of Nebraska beef and corn to countries that avoided trade disputes with the United States. That’s one of several findings from Nebraska Farm Bureau’s “Nebraska Agriculture and International Trade” report which uses the most current United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) trade data to identify the value of Nebraska agriculture exports in 2018 on a per-commodity, per-county, and per-farm and ranch basis.
LINCOLN, NEB. – Nebraska Farm Bureau has developed a guide highlighting a series of items for farmers to consider as they start the process of signing up for programs under the 2018 Farm Bill. Farmers have until March 15 to sign-up for program participation. In December 2018, Nebraska Farm Bureau worked with Congress to pass a farm bill that protected crop insurance and provided modest reforms to commodity and conservation programs.
LINCOLN, NEB. – “Japan’s passage of the new limited trade agreement with the U.S. is a big deal for Nebraska farm and ranch families. As the nation’s leading exporter of beef, and Japan being our largest customer, Nebraska stands to make significant gains from the agreement. This deal will put tariff reductions on Nebraska beef on par with our international competitors. According to Nebraska Farm Bureau estimates based on USDA data, Nebraska exported more than $253 million of beef to Japan in 2017. The reduction of tariffs from nearly 40 percent down to 9 percent when the agreement is fully implemented, will likely cause that number to grow. This agreement is also about more than beef. Japan is a leading importer of Nebraska corn, pork, wheat, poultry, ethanol, and dairy products; all of which will see a significant or complete reduction in tariffs under the new agreement. Between 2015-2017, Nebraska exported roughly $550 million in agricultural products per year to Japan. Given our experience with tariff reductions, we fully expect that dollar amount to increase.”
LINCOLN, NEB. – The Nebraska Farm Bureau is pushing the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to keep its promise as it relates to protecting the integrity of the federal Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS). The RFS program was established by Congress in 2005 to help reduce greenhouse gas emissions and expand the nation’s renewable fuels sector to reduce U.S. reliance on imported oil. The boost to renewable fuels, farmers, and the renewable fuels sector from the RFS has been a tremendous success for the country and the rural economy, yet in recent years, the EPA has significantly expanded the amount of biofuel blend waivers issued to small oil refineries, undercutting the integrity of the RFS and significantly lowering the amount of biofuels blended into the U.S. fuel supply. The actions have subsequently diminished demand for corn and ethanol, contributing to the slowed agriculture economy.
LINCOLN, NEB. – Nebraskans must be open to new opportunities to grow agriculture, even when those opportunities look different than what have been available to previous generations of farmers and ranchers. The idea of being open to new forms and models of agriculture was at the forefront of Nebraska Farm Bureau’s comments to members of the Legislature’s Agriculture Committee during a hearing on Legislative Resolution 219, a resolution offered by Sen. Steve Halloran of Hastings to identify constraints on agricultural processing, production, and marketing investment.
LINCOLN, NEB. – “We greatly appreciate Sen. Deb Fischer and Congressman Adrian Smith for their work to introduce the “Western Expanded In-State Television Access Act” in the U.S. Senate and in the House of Representatives. This important legislation would ensure that satellite television subscribers in 16 of Nebraska’s western counties would have the ability to access in-state broadcast programming. No matter where you live in our state, you should have the ability to access broadcast coverage of local news, weather, and information on what’s happening at the State Capitol. This bill would address a long-standing issue for many Nebraskans.”
LINCOLN, NEB. – Nebraska Farm Bureau has selected Dr. Terry Klopfenstein, Emeritus Professor at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL), as the 2019 recipient of, its highest honor, the Silver Eagle Award. The award will be presented to Klopfenstein on Dec. 10 at the 2019 Nebraska Farm Bureau Annual Convention in Kearney.
OMAHA, NEB. – Nebraskans are ready to reap the benefits of the United States – Mexico – Canada – Agreement (USMCA) and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi should act immediately to secure Congressional passage of USMCA to help them do so. That’s the message delivered by Nebraska elected officials and agriculture leaders during an Oct. 26 news conference to highlight the importance of USMCA, amidst Speaker Pelosi’s visit to Omaha for a political event.
LINCOLN, NEB. – “Today’s state revenue projections adopted by the Nebraska Economic Forecasting Board only bolster the opportunity for the Legislature to provide property tax relief for Nebraskans. While some will want to use additional dollars for other purposes, it’s vital these dollars be dedicated to lowering property taxes for hard working Nebraskans.”
LINCOLN, NEB. – “Property tax relief remains the highest of priorities for Nebraskans. Today’s announcement that state tax receipts for September outpaced revenue projections is good news. With total net tax receipts for the current fiscal year exceeding projections there is a great opportunity for the Legislature to put those excess revenues to work in lowering Nebraskan’s property tax bills. We look forward to working with Gov. Ricketts and our state’s elected officials to ensure those dollars are used for property tax relief.”
The Nebraska Farm Bureau is a grassroots, state-wide organization dedicated to supporting farm and ranch families and working for the benefit of all Nebraskans through a wide variety of educational, service, and advocacy efforts. More than 58,000 families across Nebraska are Farm Bureau members, working together to achieve rural and urban prosperity as agriculture is a key fuel to Nebraska’s economy. For more information about Nebraska Farm Bureau and agriculture, visit www.nefb.org
LINCOLN, NEB. – “President Trump’s announcement that he has reached a partial trade deal with China is welcomed news. For more than a year, we’ve been hopeful that the administration would be able to make progress on an agreement that would lessen the impacts of the trade war between the U.S. and China on Nebraska’s farm and ranch families. While we are anxious to learn more of the details of this agreement, reports that the deal could include significant increases in purchases of U.S. agriculture commodities beyond previous levels certainly have our attention. It’s our hope that this is the first step in resolving the ongoing trade dispute with one of the largest consumers of Nebraska agriculture products.”
LINCOLN, NEB. – Ensuring all Nebraskans can access reliable, high-speed internet service is the focal point of Nebraska Farm Bureau’s engagement with the Nebraska Rural Broadband Task Force. As the Task Force nears a November deadline for making recommendations to the Legislature on how to improve broadband service in rural areas, Nebraska Farm Bureau offered a series of suggestions to the group.
LINCOLN, NEB. – “The trade deal with Japan formally signed today by President Trump makes good on his promise to strike an agreement with one of Nebraska’s most important trading partners. This deal represents a huge win for Nebraska’s farm and ranch families. When implemented it will put them on a level playing field with some of our largest competitors that are currently participating in the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership (CP-TPP). More specifically, Nebraska’s beef, pork, dairy, and ethanol producers, will all greatly benefit from this agreement which significantly reduces or eliminates tariffs and increases overall market access to this important strategic ally and trading partner. We are hopeful this agreement will provide a long-term economic boost and is a sign of more good things to come on the trade front.”
LINCOLN, NEB. – “We appreciate President Trump and the administration taking progressive steps to address the concerns of Nebraska farmers regarding the promotion and further development of domestic ethanol and biofuels. The administration’s announcement that it will ensure the blending of 15 billion gallons of ethanol in our nation’s fuel supply by 2020 is welcome news in farm country and music to the ears of our farm families who rely on the biofuels industry as a critical market for our homegrown corn, soybeans, and other commodities. Equally important to the future of biofuels is the administration’s actions and commitment to create opportunities for moving U.S. biofuels into international markets as announced with this deal. We thank President Trump for his actions, Gov. Ricketts, as well as the Nebraska Congressional delegation, for helping get us to this point, especially Sen. Deb Fischer and Congressman Adrian Smith who have championed the need for action to provide certainty to farmers in this critical market.”
LINCOLN, NEB. – Nebraska Farm Bureau has offered the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) a series of recommendations to reform the way beef cattle are marketed. The underlying concept of Farm Bureau’s suggestions are to create a more transparent and value-based system that would more closely link the prices farmers and ranchers receive for their cattle to the value of beef products sold at the wholesale and retail levels. Nebraska Farm Bureau President Steve Nelson shared the recommendations with U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue in an October 2 letter.