The Politics of Ag: Farmers Talk Trade, Policy and 2020 Election

12:49PM Aug 01, 2020
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Field Days 2020
( Farm Journal )

Trade wars. Tariffs. Shifting allegiances. Low commodity prices. A potential shift in the White House. With the Democratic National Convention concluding the week of 8/17 and the Republican National Convention wrapping up during Farm Journal Field Days, we’ll ask three of the country’s leading farmers to weigh in on what they heard and how they think it will affect U.S. agriculture.

Adams Family Farm is a fifth-generation farming operation in northeastern North Dakota. Chris tends a diverse crop roster on 9,000 acres located on both sides of the North Dakota-Minnesota line in fertile Red River Valley soils: sugar beets, hard red spring wheat, hemp, soybeans and six varieties of specialty dry beans. Bucking the middleman, Chris also operates an export business and delivers crops (via containers loaded and sealed on-farm) straight from his fields to the doorsteps of foreign buyers. Convention ranks low on Chris’ priority list and his maverick approach afforded early entry into seed hemp in 2016, soon followed with hemp for CBD purposes.

Representative Shelly Boshart Davis serves House District 15 in her inaugural year in the Oregon State Legislature. Growing up on a farm inspired Shelly to make a career out of the business side of agriculture. Driven by her ambition and farm town values, Shelly went on to earn her bachelor’s degree in business administration from Oregon State University. Two years ago, Shelly and her business partner, Macey Wessels, were able to purchase her family’s farming and trucking business. Being an advocate for the agriculture and business community inspired Shelly to run for office. Her continued hope is to bring common sense and a practical application to lawmaking. Shelly is a wife to an amazing husband and mother to three daughters, who prefer to spend their time in the barn raising hogs.

Upon graduation from Virginia Tech, Philip J. Haynie, III, more commonly known as P.J., chose to pursue his childhood dream of continuing the family tradition of farming. Haynie, a fifth-generation farmer, owns and operates Haynie Farms, LLC, a grain farming business, producing corn, wheat, soybeans and canola throughout all four counties of the Northern Neck of Virginia. Haynie and his family also own and operate a transportation company specializing in food grade liquid bulk and dry bulk transportation, a timber harvesting company as well as a landscaping & excavating company. Haynie serves as Chairman of the National Black Growers’ Council.