Friday, July 18, 2008

Young Farmers and Ranchers

Energy prices hit agriculture especially hard, young farmers tell Congress
Thursday, July 17, 2008 3:34 PM MDT

Rapidly increasing energy prices are hitting agriculture harder than most sectors of the economy, several young Nebraska Farm Bureau leaders told the state’s Congressional delegation in visits to Capitol Hill. That makes the need for a comprehensive energy policy very apparent, they said.

“We’re not reaping the benefit of the high prices we’re seeing in the news,” Hilary Maricle of St. Edward, Farm Bureau Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee co-chair, said July 16. “Our input costs are offsetting the higher prices.”

Kristi Weeks of Juniata cited fuel, chemical and fertilizer costs which have increased more than 50 percent in one year. Her husband, Ryan Weeks, explained, “Four years ago my cost of production for a bushel of irrigated corn was $2. This year it will be about $3.40 and next year, more than $4.” Read More

Young farmers and ranchers are sometimes viewed as a mythical creature like Bigfoot or the Loch Ness Monster, everyone has heard of them but most people don’t think they really exist. But these young agriculturalists from Nebraska are making their presence known to our political leaders by telling their story and being involved in shaping their industry. Many times the things we do off the farm or ranch can be just as important to our survival as the things we do on our operations.

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