Your article about the “leader” of the National Corn Growers Association (Aug. 3) tells a lot about where family farmers stand in this economy. According to the article, Jon Doggett, CEO of NCGA, has never raised a bushel of corn himself. Leaving his home ranch in Montana, he’s been in Washington, D.C. since 1988 working for the National Cattlemen’s Association and the Farm Bureau.
It says his concerns are more exports and new uses domestically. Those were the same concerns of the Corn Growers when I was a member of the first Iowa Corn Promotion Board 40 years ago. Increasing demand for farm commodities has always been the mantra of Farm Bureau and the commodity organizations, taking money out of our pockets for various checkoffs that do absolutely no good. After all, do you think anybody around the world needs to know what corn, soybeans, beef and pork are? Farmers don’t export anything. Giant multinational corporations do, and the vertically integrated corporate livestock companies also want cheap corn and soybeans to feed their livestock here and overseas.
We are told to increase our yields, watch former dairy farms plow up their pasture to raise corn and soybeans with unbelievable soil erosion, and stand helplessly by as more Amazon rain forest is plowed up to do the same. Supply and demand? How can these commodity organizations and the Farm Bureau look American farmers in the eye when supply is always increasing and we take losses year after year?
Board member of Family Farm Defenders