National convention

Montana Grain Farmers Show Tremendous Strength at National Convention

by Courtney Kibblewhite, Northern Agriculture Network

NEW ORLEANS – The Montana Grain Growers leadership team introduced three new resolutions at the National Wheat Growers Association convention.

Montana Grain Growers President Tryg Koch says, “It’s always a pleasure to attend these national conventions. We can put in place a policy on greenhouse gases and cover crops. It’s just great to be able to work with fellow farmers across the country who grow wheat and we can collaborate and make the best decisions for the farmers.

The three resolutions passed by the National Wheat Growers Association included:

  1. The NAWG contends that in areas where the average annual rainfall is 20 inches or less, no-till winter wheat and all fall-sown no-till crops that are harvested for grain, be considered as a conservation practice for cost sharing through the NRCS. (MT)
  2. The NAWG opposes the expansion of new national heritage areas. (MT)
  3. The NAWG recognizes the release of greenhouse gases, its negative impacts on agricultural production and other environmental impacts of forests/wildfires and that forest management can reduce these impacts and risks. (MT)

As sustainable farming practices and National Heritage Areas make an impact in other parts of the country, leaders in Montana hope to directly address the needs of their members by shaping national policy to support local efforts.

Montana farmers are optimistic that 2022 will not resemble the historic drought of 2021. However, the current threat to a proposed National Heritage Area in Great Falls and environmental activists who demonize greenhouse gas emissions from Greenhouse agriculture also threatens growers.

Outgoing Grain Growers President Mitch Konen of Fairfield said, “We hear all the time about how much of an impact the farmer has on greenhouse gas emissions and we wanted to get something into national policy and figures related to the impact of forests and forest fires and ensure that they are under control. consideration.”

Konen also recalled the resolution the team had previously presented, which became part of the policy regarding soil testing and soil acidification.

It is important to note that the Board of Directors of the National Association has passed a resolution inviting North Dakota wheat growers to return to the organization before the next Farm Bill. North Dakota left the national association after 2019, saying the national association was slow to respond to their concerns. The two organizations have communicated throughout the year, the North Dakota Board of Directors will make a decision soon.