Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack returned from the G20 Ag Ministers’ Summit in Florence, Italy. He went to Kansas City to speak at the Agri-Pulse and Kansas City Agribusiness Council Ag Outlook Forum. He recapped his trip and talked about some of his intentions to get the United States moving with more climate-safe farming principles, and how it can be appealing to farmers. He says that just because the European Union (EU) went one way, doesn’t mean we have to follow them to reach the same goals.
The environment was one of the main topics discussed at the summit. Secretary Vilsack said these meetings were important to bring the United States back to the table when it comes to global discussions on the climate, and how to move forward in a way that is beneficial to the planet and sustainable for family farms. The EU has implemented a new program called “Farm to Fork.” He talked about the goals the EU has for that program.
Vilsack also told the audience that the world needs to know that America’s farmers are going to do all they can to help the environment and reach obtainable goals. However, the answers aren’t found in just copying what the EU has done. There is more than one way to meet the challenge.
Vilsack says the U.S. is working with other countries that believe in doing better by the environment but don’t believe that the EU should be dictating the way this gets accomplished. Brazil is one of those countries interested in working with the U.S.
Vilsack also said that climate programs and ideas should be about doing the right thing for the planet, not used as a trade tool as the EU has been known to do.