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view from the field

Gerald Long, GFB President

Carrying out the Vision

Georgia Farm Bureau continues to implement the Harvest 20 Vision I introduced at our annual convention last year. As you’ll recall, the three goals of the vision are to INSPIRE Georgia’s ag community, EDUCATE our members and consumers so we can PRESERVE Georgia agriculture for future generations. One way GFB is working to inspire Georgia’s ag community is by funding grants for ag research to address production issues impacting Georgia farmers. In April, GFB announced we were accepting proposals to fund research conducted this year. A review committee selected these five research projects to receive GFB grants: Identification & Documentation of Invasive Whitefly Species on Georgia Farms, principal investigator Michael Toews; Understanding the Interaction of Forage Quality & Quantity & the Best Supplementation Strategies to Maximize Beef Cattle Efficiency, principal investigator Lawton Stewart; Evaluating Snap Bean Cultivar & Germplasms for Resistance/ Tolerance to the Cucurbit Leaf Crumple Virus, principal investigator Bhabesh Dutta; Effect of Cover Crops on Stubby Root Nematodes, principal investigator Abolfazl Hajihassani; and Evaluating the Effects of a Supplemental Feed Area on Early Bird Performance & Health in a Commercial Broiler House, principal investigator Brian Fairchild. GFB is awarding almost $42,000 in funds in varying amounts to these projects. The grant recipients have been invited to present their research results in a poster session at the 2018 GFB Annual Convention in December. I’m looking forward to seeing the research findings presented at convention and the positive impact the research will have when farmers apply it on their farms. The annual GFB Young Farmer & Rancher Conference is another way GFB has worked to INSPIRE and EDUCATE our members this summer. I wasn’t able to attend as my wife, Janice, was recovering from knee replacement surgery, but I’ve heard nothing but positive reports. This event serves as a way to introduce our younger members to how our organization works for Georgia’s farmers and the programs 4 / July–August 2018

we offer. It’s also designed to encourage them in their careers as farmers or related ag fields and equip them to advocate for agriculture. Congratulations to the winners of the YF&R contests. I know you’ll represent GFB well at the AFBF convention in January. You can read more about the conference throughout this issue. GFB has always worked to PRESERVE agriculture through our legislative efforts. With the low commodity prices farmers have seen recently and the uncertainty of how agriculture will be impacted by the U.S. raising trade tariffs on other nations, it’s more important than ever that Congress pass the pending farm bill. Your GFB Public Policy staff continues to talk to the officials and staff in D.C. who will be ironing out the details of the bill now that it has gone to conference committee. We all know water is essential for preserving the future of Georgia agriculture. Farm Bureau had hoped the Supreme Court would accept Special Master Ralph Lancaster’s 2017 recommendation to reject Florida’s request to limit Georgia’s use of water from the Chattahoochee and Flint Rivers. Now that the court has sent the case back to the special master, these questions must be answered: What amount of water flow will benefit Florida? Did Georgia cause any harm? If so, what could be done to fix it? Can the harm be fixed by a cap without including the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers? It’s worth noting the court reserved the right to issue the final decision of the case and the court concluded that “Florida will be entitled to a decree only if the benefits of apportionment substantially outweigh the harm [to Georgia] that might result.” In writing the dissenting opinion, Justice Clarence Thomas pointed out that Georgia’s portion of the ApalachicolaChattahoochee-Flint River Basin accounts for 98 percent of the basin’s population and 99 percent of the economic production of the basin. Let’s pray this weighs in Georgia’s favor in the next go-round.




Farm Bureau Members: Included in dues — $1 per year Non-Members — $15 per year To subscribe call 1-800-898-1911, ext. 5334.


President GERALD LONG, Bainbridge 1st Vice President and Middle Georgia Vice President ROBERT FOUNTAIN JR., Adrian North Georgia Vice President BERNARD SIMS, Ringgold South Georgia Vice President DANIEL JOHNSON, Alma General Counsel DUKE GROOVER Chief Financial Officer & Corp. Treasurer DAVID JOLLEY Chief Administrative Officer & Corp. Secretary JON HUFFMASTER

DIRECTORS FIRST DISTRICT: Bill Bryan, Summerville; Wesley Hall, Cumming SECOND DISTRICT: Bobby Gunter, Dahlonega; Randy Ruff, Elberton THIRD DISTRICT: George Chambers, Carrollton; Nora Goodman, Temple FOURTH DISTRICT: Skeetter McCorkle, Dearing; Marvin Ruark, Bishop FIFTH DISTRICT: Ralph Adamson Jr., Barnesville; Matt Bottoms, Molena SIXTH DISTRICT: James Malone, Dexter; James Emory Tate, Denton SEVENTH DISTRICT: Gary Bell, Bellville; Ben Boyd, Sylvania EIGHTH DISTRICT: Scotty Raines, Sycamore; Don Wood, Rochelle NINTH DISTRICT: Lucius Adkins, Newton; Paul Shirah, Camilla TENTH DISTRICT: Lamar Vickers, Nashville; David Lee, Alma YOUNG FARMER CHAIRMAN: Dustin Covington, Americus WOMEN’S COMMITTEE CHAIR: Carol McQueen, Locust Grove.


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Georgia Farm Bureau News

Georgia Farm Bureau News -July / August 2018  

The Georgia Farm Bureau News has been the official publication of Georgia Farm Bureau since 1937. With the motto, “The Voice of Georgia Farm...

Georgia Farm Bureau News -July / August 2018  

The Georgia Farm Bureau News has been the official publication of Georgia Farm Bureau since 1937. With the motto, “The Voice of Georgia Farm...