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Angus Productions Inc.
Copyright © 2009
Angus Productions Inc.

Ag Policy Committee Takes Action


PHOENIX, Ariz. (Jan. 30, 2009) — The beef checkoff, renewable fuels and the Mexican border situation were a few of the issues addressed Friday, Jan. 30, by the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) Agricultural Policy Committee. Cattle producer members met during the 2009 Cattle Industry Annual Convention, in Phoenix, Ariz., to review and update the language of existing NCBA policy and consider new policy resolutions.

Committee members affirmed support for the dollar-a-head beef checkoff and a desire for the fair, cost-efficient administration of beef promotion programs. However, the committee recommended NCBA work toward amending the Beef Promotion and Research Act such that promotion of U.S. beef, specifically, be allowed. Current law forbids promotion efforts to make any distinction between beef produced domestically and that which is imported.

Ag Policy CommitteePictured are (from left) Ag Policy Committee Vice Chairman Tim Munns of Utah, Chairman Ben Brophy of Kansas and NCBA staffer Colin Woodall.

Noting that the buying power of the checkoff dollar has declined significantly during the last two decades, but recognizing also that the present political climate is unfavorable for an effort to raise the national per-head assessment, the committee forwarded a resolution pledging NCBA’s aid to individual states interested in planning, establishing and implementing checkoff initiatives at the state level.

Considering interim policy developed during last summer’s mid-year meeting, committee members tweaked the language and forwarded a resolution related to renewable fuels. In essence, the policy favors transition to a market-based approach to the production of renewable fuels such as ethanol, instead of artificial incentives such as refiners’ tax credits and renewable fuels mandates. Also forwarded was a recommendation for continued NCBA support of environmentally responsible exploration and extraction of domestic fossil fuels.

As related to the Secure Fence Act, through which Congress called for construction of a primary fence and a virtual fence along sections of the Mexican border, NCBA’s Agricultural Committee affirmed interim policy supporting compensation for affected owners of land along the border. Also sought is a guarantee that landowners will have access to lands severed by the fence, and a guarantee of security and protection.


Committee recommendations are brought before the floor of the convention for approval by all voting members in attendance. All policies adopted are then subject to approval by more than 30,000 NCBA members nationwide. Convention results become official following a mail-in ballot process, which concludes in March.

Editor’s Note: This article was written under contract or by staff of Angus Productions Inc. (API), which claims copyright to this article. It may not be published or distributed without the express permission of Angus Productions Inc. To request reprint permission and guidelines, contact Shauna Rose Hermel, editor, at (816) 383-5270.