Oklahoma Farm Report masthead graphic with wheat on the left and cattle on the right.
Howdy Neighbors!
Ron Hays, Director of Farm and Ranch Programming, Radio Oklahoma Ag Network  |  2401 Exchange Ave, Suite F, Oklahoma City, Ok 73108  |  (405) 601-9211


Agricultural News

Senator Lankford Hears Issues on the Minds of Oklahoma Ag Producers During COVID-19

Mon, 06 Apr 2020 09:02:43 CDT

Senator Lankford Hears Issues on the Minds of Oklahoma Ag Producers During COVID-19 Farmers and ranchers from across the state had an opportunity to express their concerns surrounding the impact of the coronavirus during a recent conference call with Sen. James Lankford and Oklahoma Farm Bureau leaders.

After the U.S. Senate passed a historic $2 trillion coronavirus aid package late Wednesday, March 25, Lankford shared with OKFB members some of the tenets of the package including additional borrowing authority for the Commodity Credit Corp. and aid for livestock and specialty crop producers.

Under the bill, the CCC receives an additional $14 billion and Secretary Sonny Perdue receives $9.5 billion to allow for unknowns, Lankford said.

"A lot of urban areas have faced a lot more pressure of businesses shut down than we've seen in rural areas," he said. "But there's a lot of unknowns, so (this bill is) providing some additional headroom."

The deal also provides support for small businesses including farms and ranches through a loan to grant program that can fund payroll, utilities or lease payments.

Below are some of the top concerns of OKFB members who tuned into the call.

Cattle markets
A dramatic drop in cattle prices amid the outbreak is one of the biggest concerns for ranchers in Oklahoma, particularly as the wholesale and retail price of beef for consumers rises.

Lankford said he and several other farm state senators have been engaged in discussion to ensure prices are not being manipulated and producers are not being cut out.

Members voiced concern over the status of the H-2A temporary agricultural worker program, as many Oklahoma farms and ranches depend on the guest workers.

Lankford reassured farmers and ranchers that workers with an existing H-2A visa will be let into the country.

"If they have a visa and they're coming in for work, they get a temperature check, an evaluation," he said. "They may have to pause for a couple of days just to be able to make sure they have no symptoms, then they're moving into the country."

Mexico has tested few people in their country, so Lankford said anyone coming across the border creates a challenge for the U.S. Though some restrictions have been implemented for people traveling for tourism, individuals with work visas are still able to come into the United States.

An idea was discussed that would allow H-2A workers to relocate among farms and ranches as they are needed. Lankford promised to discuss the possibility of a waiver with administration officials.

"That's very, very reasonable," he said. "We've got to figure out if we can actually get that implemented fast enough that we can make a difference with it."

After months and months of uncertainty in trade deals, the U.S. made significant progress on a number of deals with Japan, Canada and Mexico, and China. But the recent virus outbreak in China has again caused uncertainty in trade deals.

Most of the trade concerns, in Lankford's mind, would be for manufacturers awaiting products and inputs from China.

"I don't see it affecting ag the same way it affects manufacturing," he said.

Lankford has provided a list of COVID-19 resources for constituents on his website. Farmers and ranchers may also find helpful links from OKFB here.

Radio Oklahoma Ag Network Farm Director Met with Senator Lankford last week to talk about the Challenges of the COVID-19 Pandemic, if you missed that conversation, click here:



WebReadyTM Powered by WireReady® NSI


Top Agricultural News

  • Oklahoma Youth Expo Sale of Champions Sale Order Available Here- Sale Set for 4 PM Friday  Fri, 17 Mar 2023 04:50:54 CDT
  • Rural Voters Dominated Vote to Defeat Recreational Marijuana March 7th  Fri, 10 Mar 2023 07:13:05 CST
  • Ron Hays Talks to Israeli Ag Tour Guide Colin Lotzof About the Miraclel of Ag in Israel  Wed, 22 Feb 2023 22:11:04 CST
  • OALP Members Experience First Hand View of Cutting Edge Drip Irrigation Technology as Israel Travel Ends  Wed, 22 Feb 2023 10:51:49 CST
  • OALP Members Get First Hand View of Cutting Edge Drip Irrigation Technology as Israel Travel Ends  Wed, 22 Feb 2023 10:50:10 CST
  • Oklahoma Ag Leadership Program Sees Fruit, Beef and Dairy Production North of the Sea of Galilee in Israel  Mon, 20 Feb 2023 21:56:02 CST
  • Oklahoma Ag Leadership Program Sees Diverse Farm Operations in Jordan River Valley of Israel  Sun, 19 Feb 2023 21:17:30 CST
  • Israeli Tour Guide Mark Kedem Talks About The Cultural Aspects of What Class XX of OALP is Experiencing   Sat, 18 Feb 2023 22:17:23 CST

  • More Headlines...


    Ron salutes our daily email sponsors!

    Oklahoma Beef council Oklahoma Ag Credit Oklahoma Farm Bureau National Livestock Credit Ag Mediation Program P&K Equipment Oklahoma City Farm Show Union Mutual Stillwater Milling Oklahoma Cattlemen's Association KIS FUTURES, INC.

    Search OklahomaFarmReport.com

    © 2008-2024 Oklahoma Farm Report
    Email Ron   |   Newsletter Signup   |    Current Spots   |    Program Links

    WebReady powered by WireReady® Inc.