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Farm Bureau president vows to fight EPA regulation

Speaking to the 92nd annual meeting of the American Farm
Bureau Federation in Atlanta, Georgia Sunday, the group’s president Bob
Stallman vowed to fight overregulation.

He announced that Farm Bureau is going to court to block
an EPA plan to limit fertilizer and livestock waste runoff into the Chesapeake
Bay. The lawsuite, Stallman said, “is essentially to preserve the power of the
states, not the EPA, to regulate farm production.”

Voluntary conservation efforts are already making
progress in cleaning up the bay, Stallman said.

Preserving the rights of farmers to decide how they run
their businesses is just one of the group’s goals for 2011. Stallman said that
Farm Bureau is also stepping up its efforts to reach consumers to counter the
work of “a handful of self-appointed food elitists who are trying to divide

Farm Bureau is one of 23 farm organizations and commodity
groups that have formed the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance to better
communicate how the nation’s food system works.

Stallman also urged delegates to the convention to decide
what kind of farm policy they will support when Congress writes the next farm
bill in an austere fiscal environment.

Stallman predicted that the next farm bill will be a
challenge, a view supported when Georgia Senator Saxby Chambliss welcomed the
group to Atlanta.

“This is going to be the most difficult farm bill that
we’ve ever had to write,” Chambliss said, “but the good news is that when we
look at agriculture today, it’s as healthy as it’s been in my lifetime.” 

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