Market in ‘Good State,’ According to Va. Beef Leader
Jason Carter, executive director of the Virginia Cattlemen’s Association and Virginia Beef Industry Council, said things look far different for the state’s beef farmers now than back in October.
From a federal perspective, Carter said the administration of President Donald Trump should wind up being a good one for agricultural interests in large part because of his viewpoint on federal regulation.
“He’s willing to force federal agencies to review some rules before implementing them,” he said.
“The rule would eliminate value-added management and make everything a commodity,” he said.
But Trump is also presenting challenges for agriculture.
The cuts come about 18 months before a new Farm Bill that will guide agriculture programs and spending for five years.
The major concern is funding for the USDA’s Environmental Quality Incentives Program, or EQIP, and the Conservation Reserve Program, programs that are popular with farmers.
The likely loss of federal cost-share dollars for environmental efforts comes at a time when Virginia greatly reduced its funding for such programs.
With less money to go around, Carter said he thinks the state needs to better prioritize the funding it doles out for cost-share programs.
One of the report’s recommendations was that Virginia require all cattle to be fenced out of streams, with the state and livestock industry reimbursing farmers for doing so.