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National Farmers Union members fly to DC

Photo Courtesy of the National Farmers Union

More than 300 union members advocate for family farmers and ranchers in Washington D.C. this week.

The National Farmers Union (NFU) sent 320 members to Washington D.C. Monday for its Fall Legislative Fly-In. The annual event allows NFU members to speak with legislators about issues important to family farmers and ranchers.

NFU President Roger Johnson said advocacy is important, especially when times are tough for family farmers and ranchers.

“We’ve seen a dramatic, 50 percent drop in farm income over the past four years,” Johnson said. “At the same time, farmers are enduring major weather volatility due to climate change, uncertainty over foreign trade markets, massive consolidation of farms and agribusiness companies and the ongoing degradation of farming and rural community infrastructure and services.”

Throughout the Legislative Fly-In, NFU members will hold small-group meetings with all 535 congressional offices. NFU wants to ensure Congress considers the social and economic well-being of American family farmers and ranchers with every vote cast this fall.

“NFU members are especially concerned about the prospect of an adequate farm safety net through the 2018 Farm Bill, bipartisan health care system fixes that ensure accessible, affordable, quality health care, and expanded markets for American grown, renewable fuels, including E30 and advanced biofuels,” Johnson said.

The three-day event began Monday with a briefing at the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA).