Tama County, Iowa is home to just over 17,000 citizens. Like much of Iowa, the east central county is filled with its fair share of diverse farming communities, creating a dire need for strong, local support. The Tama County Farm Bureau–led by a newly elected, young board–strives to reinforce the farming community by offering knowledge and accurate representation.
Cordt Holub, a row-crop and cow-calf operator, hailing from Buckingham, Iowa, does his part in advocating for agriculture by serving as the voting delegate for the Tama County Farm Bureau. Two weeks ago, Holub utilized his role by attending the Summer Policy Trip in Washington, D.C., which encompassed, mostly, the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), as well as the Market Facilitation Program (MFP).
The Tama County Farm Bureau voting delegate shared what he gathered from the Summer Policy Trip in D.C.
“We had discussions with some USDA officials, and they were gracious enough to give us some insight about what was going to happen with MFP 2.0, the second round of payments. This new MFP 2.0 will cover a more broad spectrum, more of an acre-base. It goes off of past yield results and yield histories from each county. The county I’m in right now, Tama County, we’re looking at $73 an acre. But that’s in a three-phase payment. The first round will be half of that, so around $30. In the second round, we’ll get another portion. And they’re hoping they don’t have to do the third portion. We’re hoping that we can get something figured out with China before then,” Holub said.
Holub also touched on local farmers’ hopes for the results of the trade war.
“I believe that this MFP 2.0 is well-taken. But as an Ag group, especially Farm Bureau, we want trade, not aid. We want to get some trade figured out first. In the meantime, we’ll just keep doing what we do, and hopefully the people in Washington can get things figured out,” Holub shared.
If you are looking to have a say on current agricultural policies, Cordt has a few suggestions.
“Our legislators are willing to listen. If you are able to contact them, email them, call them while they’re out in D.C., they want to hear what’s happening back home. Push them to support USMCA and continue to push them to get trade deals,” Holub said.