In preparation for the July primary election, the Maryland Farm Bureau Political Action Committee (PAC) announces its endorsement of candidates for the Maryland General Assembly. Each election, the Maryland Farm Bureau (MDFB) PAC looks at incumbent voting records, reviews candidate questionnaires, and solicits recommendations from county Farm Bureau organizations to determine candidates who are friends of Maryland agriculture. More here.
Applications are now open for the 2022-2023 Maryland Farm Bureau Ambassador program, a scholarship and leadership development initiative for Maryland's Farm Bureau member-families. After receiving entries from the county Farm Bureaus, the state Farm Bureau will choose one female and one male ambassador to represent Maryland Farm Bureau and the importance of agriculture's role in the state from December 2022 through December 2023. Please share this application with full details with any individual you feel would make a great representative for Maryland Farm Bureau. Applications are due by 5 PM on September 16, 2022. More here.
Maryland Farm Bureau (MDFB), in partnership with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS), announced that producer permits for the control of black vulture depredation are now available, and can be obtained through MDFB. Black vultures can kill livestock young and damage property. They can work together as a "wake" and attack an animal to the point of death or need of euthanasia. As black vultures have been traced from migratory origin, they are protected under the federal Migratory Bird Treaty Act of 1918, and can only be lethally controlled through USFWS permits. More here.
American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall commented on USDA's proposed poultry marketing disclosure requirements and the advanced notice of proposed rulemaking under the Packers and Stockyards Act. "AFBF appreciates USDA working to create more transparency in the poultry industry. Farmers deserve to know what they are getting into, and to understand how they are being paid. Making sure farmers have access to important information about their poultry company, inputs, stocking densities and feed disruptions is good for everyone in the food value chain." More here.
Agriculture producers who did not receive the 2017 Census of Agriculture and do not receive other USDA surveys or censuses have until June 30 to sign up to receive the 2022 Census of Agriculture here. USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will mail ag census survey codes for responding securely online to every known U.S. producer this November. Hard copy questionnaires will follow in December. The ag census, conducted for over 180 years, remains the only source of comprehensive and impartial agricultural data for every state and county in the nation. It includes every operation - large or small, urban or rural - from which $1,000 or more of agricultural products are produced and sold, or would normally be produced and sold, in the ag census year. More here.
American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall commented on President Joe Biden's plan to address production costs and the affordability of food. "AFBF appreciates that President Biden took time to visit a farm and recognize the hard-working families who grow crops and tend to the animals each and every day. We agree with the President's description of the American farm as the 'breadbasket of Democracy.' More here.
USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) in Maryland is now accepting applications for the Agricultural Conservation Easements Program (ACEP). The 2018 Farm Bill has provided NRCS with technical and financial assistance to help private landowners, land trusts, state and local governments, and other groups protect valuable lands. ACEP focuses on restoring and protecting wetlands as well as conserving productive agricultural lands and grasslands. The Wetland Reserve Easement (WRE) component provides landowners compensation for enrolling their farmed or converted wetlands in easements and restoring the land in a cost-effective manner. More here.
American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall welcomed USDA's announcement to allow flexibility for Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) participants to terminate their contract if they're in their final year in order to contribute to U.S. domestic production. "AFBF appreciates USDA allowing farmers in their final year of CRP to terminate their contracts early. This decision will enable farmers to meet the demands of America's families and help address overseas food supply challenges created by the war in Ukraine."More here.
Register to vote or verify that your voter registration information is current and make any updates by June 28. To vote by mail, you must request a mail-in ballot from the State Board of Elections or your local board. Your request for a mail-in ballot for the Primary Election must be received by July 12. Mail-in ballots must be postmarked or placed in a designated ballot drop box by 8 PM on July 19 for the Primary Election. More here.
To vote in person, Marylanders can vote during early voting or on election day:
Early voting will be held for 8 days and begin on Thursday, July 7, through Thursday, July 14, from 7 AM until 8 PM for the Primary Election. You can vote early at any early voting center in the county you live in.
The Primary Election Day is July 19, 2022. To vote in person on election days, vote at your assigned polling place.
If you own a business or a farm, you are likely seeking ways to improve your profitability, and achieve a "better bottom line." One place to look for savings is your energy bills. This three-part webinar series introduces you to experts who are eager to help you navigate through the process, explore proven tools, prioritize decisions, and unlock access to energy savings grants, incentives, and loans. Learn from experts about how your business or farm may best invest your hard-earned dollars to grow, and to sustain your profitability. These free programs highlight methods and processes that are valid state-wide. A live Q&A will be included during each session. Register here.
Maryland farmers, we've got you covered! A new partnership with Virginia Farm Bureau Federation's Products Division means Maryland Farm Bureau members' farm and ranch supply needs are covered. From tillage parts and tractor tires, to grease, batteries and baler twine, your items are packed, shipped and delivered to your local dealer the next day.More here.
Score even more deals on Avis rentals by joining their loyalty program BEFORE reserving a car with your Farm Bureau discount. Every dollar you spend with Avis Preferred earns you points toward free rentals, upgrades, and accessories! Sign up for an account, enroll in the Preferred program, and get up to 30% off. More here.