State Ag Leaders Set Priorities for 2017

Members of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture (NASDA) are gathering in Washington, DC this week for their annual Winter Policy Conference. The DC-facing conference of more than 200 state, federal, and industry ag leaders underscores the importance of effective partnerships between state and federal governments with the new President, new administration, and new Congress.

Dr. Michael G. Strain, NASDA President and Louisiana Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry, led the NASDA Board of Directors in establishing the association’s top policy priorities for the year.

“As statewide leaders, NASDA members have a unique perspective and deep appreciation of how policies impact our farmers and ranchers,” said Strain. “Over the next 12 months we will advocate for Cooperative Federalism, the importance of international trade for agriculture, appropriate implementation of the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA), and the next Farm Bill.”

Over the next two days NASDA Members will discuss and vote on a number of policy amendments and action items which address topics such as the importance of international trade for U.S. agriculture, labeling and marketing claims, and dairy trade with Canada.

NASDA represents the elected and appointed commissioners, secretaries, and directors of the departments of agriculture in all fifty states and four U.S. territories.  NASDA grows and enhances agriculture by forging partnerships and creating consensus to achieve sound policy outcomes between state departments of agriculture, the federal government, and stakeholders.  The 2017 Winter Policy Conference is one of two annual meetings for NASDA.