WASHINGTON — Last week, representatives from the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition’s (NSAC) 130+ member organizations voted on a final set of policy and funding priorities to guide the Coalition’s work through 2020.
“This collaborative priority setting process is the heart of our work at NSAC,” said NSAC Policy Director Eric Deeble. “Our members work on a wide variety of issues, from climate change in agriculture to credit and crop insurance, and this process ensures that the focus and power of the Coalition is on the most critical issues.”
Gathered together at McAllen, Texas’ historic Casa de Palmas hotel, Represented Members of the Coalition debated and then finalized a set of annual priorities, which had been developed by the Coalition’s Issue Committees in the months preceding the January Member Meeting. Ultimately, three top campaign priorities (issues on which the entire coalition agrees to engage) were chosen: Working Lands Conservation, Beginning and Socially Disadvantaged Farmers and Ranchers, and the Local Agriculture Market Program (LAMP).
The Coalition also identified several additional annual and multi-year campaign issues – including climate change and agriculture, small meat processing, and immigration – on which NSAC will engage, as well as a list of appropriations priorities for fiscal year (FY) 2021. Priority programs for NSAC’s appropriations campaigns include the following USDA programs: Farming Opportunities Training and Outreach, Food Safety Outreach Program, Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education, and LAMP. NSAC will publish detailed appropriations recommendations, including funding requests, in the coming weeks.
“Having the opportunity to build our policy priorities in McAllen, Texas – a place at the center of our national conversation about immigration and home to many small and medium-sized family farms struggling against pressure from corporate agribusiness, developers, and climate change – was an inspiring and meaningful experience,” said Deeble. “The farmers and farm workers with whom we visit at each of our Member Meetings help us to keep our work in context, and remind us for what, and who, we are working.”
For a complete list of NSAC’s 2020 priorities, click here.
–National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition
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