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Agricultural News

Oklahoman Named to USDA Agricultural Trade Advisory Committee

Fri, 09 Sep 2011 11:50:12 CDT

Oklahoman Named to USDA Agricultural Trade Advisory Committee Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and United States Trade Representative Ron Kirk today announced the appointment of 148 private-sector members to the Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee (APAC) and six Agricultural Technical Advisory Committees (ATACs).

Oklahoman Harvey Schroeder, executive director of the Oklahoma Cotton Council and member of American Farmers and Ranchers and Oklahoma Farmers Union, was appointed to serve and represent the state on the Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee on Tobacco, Cotton, and Peanuts. Schroeder was the only Oklahoma representative selected for any of the advisory committees.

"With U.S. agricultural exports reaching record highs as our farmers and ranchers bring the American brand to more of the world consumers, agricultural trade is demonstrating once again its vital role in the health of our nation's economy," said Vilsack. "Members of these seven committees understand the importance of open markets to the U.S. economy. By serving on these committees, they have the opportunity to provide their expertise and knowledge to deliberations that influence U.S. trade policy, ultimately helping to grow, innovate and out-compete the rest of the world."

"These appointments are an important step in the Obama Administration's ongoing efforts to expand trade and bring new opportunities to America's farmers and ranchers, as well as the businesses and workers they support," said Ambassador Kirk. "Agricultural exports are a critical component of America's economy, and the input and advice these individuals will provide in the coming years will be indispensible in helping to identify and capitalize on new and emerging trade opportunities."

Congress established the advisory committee system in 1974 to ensure a private-sector voice in establishing U.S. agricultural trade policy objectives to reflect U.S. commercial and economic interests. The U.S. Department of Agriculture and the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative jointly manage the committees.

National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson was appointed to the Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee saying, "This is a tremendous honor, and ensures that family farmers and ranchers will have a voice at the table when it comes to trade issues."

"Trade is very important to agriculture and agriculture is important to U.S. trade, being one of the few sectors to routinely post a trade surplus in the face of a very large U.S. trade deficit. U.S. trade considerations need to include the impacts of trade surpluses and deficits, said Johnson. "We also need to consider the impact on hunger, human rights, the environment, and development goals around the world. Too often our trade policies discount these other important international goals."

The APAC provides advice and information to the Secretary of Agriculture and the U.S. Trade Representative on negotiating objectives, positions and other matters related to the development, implementation and administration of U.S. agricultural trade policy. The ATACs offer technical advice and information on specific commodities.

The six ATACs are: Animals and Animal Products, Fruits and Vegetables, Grains, Feed, Oilseeds and Planting Seeds, Processed Foods, Sweeteners and Sweetener Products, and Tobacco, Cotton and Peanuts.

This initial group of committee members will serve until June 9, 2015. They will be supplemented by additional appointments over the next four years. Applications are encouraged at any time and will be reviewed periodically for additional appointments going forward. Questions may be directed to Steffon Brown at 202-720-6219 or via e-mail to Steffon.Brown@fas.usda.gov   

The Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee is listed below. Click here to see a complete listing of the six different agricultural advisory committees.

Agricultural Policy Advisory Committee

Laura Batcha - Organic Trade Association

Jon Caspers - Pig Farmer

Nancy Cook - Pet Food Institute

Marsha Echols - World Food Law Institute

Audrae Erickson - Corn Refiners Association

Hezekiah Gibson - United Farmers USA, Inc.

Thomas Hammer - National Oilseed Processors Association

Shannon Herzfeld - Archer Daniels Midland

Leonard Johnson - National Farmers Union

Peter Kappelman - Meadow Brook Dairy Farms

Alan Kemper - Kemper Farms

Robert Koch - The Wine Institute

Robert Litterer - Litterer Farmers

Rik Miller - DuPont Crop Protection

Brenda Morris - Morris Farms

Daniel Moss - Moss Farms Partnership

Gary Murphy - U.S. Rice Producers Association

Thomas Nassif - Western Growers Association

Forrest Roberts - National Cattlemen's Beef Association

Christian Schlect - Northwest Horticultural Council

Philip Seng - U.S. Meat Export Federation

Michael Stuart - Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association

James Sumner - USA Poultry & Egg Export Council

Alan Tracy - U.S. Wheat Associates

Larry Wooten - North Carolina Farm Bureau

Michael Wootton - Sunkist Growers

Van Yeutter - Cargill



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