OPINION Editor’s note: This letter was sent by the association to numerous Wisconsin senators.
In February of this year the stood united with other leading Wisconsin farm organizations in support of Brad Pfaff as Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection.
Nine months later our position has not wavered.
In a joint letter we wrote, “Brad Pfaff grew up on a dairy farm in La Crosse County and has worked in agriculture policy his entire adult life. He served in both (Washington) D.C. and in Wisconsin as policy advisor for Senator Kohl and Congressman Kind. He also served as state director for the Farm Service Agency.
In all those roles Pfaff has been a tireless advocate for farmers, agribusinesses and rural Wisconsin. He also has a deep understanding of the wide variety of commodities and business operations that exist in Wisconsin and supports agriculture of all sizes and scales.”
As I’m sure you are aware Wisconsin’s agriculture industry is one of the leading economic drivers of our state, contributing $104.8 billion annually along with 11.8 percent of the state’s employment. Every job in agriculture supports an additional 1.46 jobs elsewhere in Wisconsin.
Wisconsin’s farmers – while providing so much to this great state – are struggling. Here at the Wisconsin Corn Growers Association we call it the “perfect storm.” On a federal level the future of the U.S. Mexico Canada Trade Agreement remains uncertain and the use of ethanol-blended fuels is still jeopardized by Renewal Fuel Standard waivers. Our growers are dealing with increased tariffs, depressed commodity prices and a combination of surprises from Mother Nature – including a wet spring and what appears to be an early winter.
Our members need stability and continuity. They need someone to speak on their behalf, to work on their behalf and to put it simply – someone to care. Brad Pfaff is that person.