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American Farm Bureau Applauds Spanberger’s Efforts on Behalf of Ag Community

October 7, 2020 by Reece Nations

WASHINGTON – United States Rep. Abigail Spanberger, D-Va., received the “Friend of Farm Bureau” award from the American Farm Bureau Federation on Tuesday. 

Spanberger, who serves on the House Agriculture Committee and as chair of the Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry, was presented the award for her support of policy issues of importance to central Virginia crop and livestock producers, according to a press release. Seven of 10 counties in Spanberger’s district are rural counties.

“In my office on Capitol Hill, I have a sign that reads ‘If you ate today, thank a farmer.’ Few phrases could sum it up better,” Spanberger said. “Day in and day out, the tireless work of American farmers and ranchers puts food on the table for millions and millions of families. Their efforts not only stave off hunger at home and across the world, they also generate tremendous value for our nation’s economy.”

“I’ve been proud to support legislation that benefits and strengthens opportunity for farmers in Central Virginia and across the United States, and I’m honored to receive this recognition from the American Farm Bureau Federation,” Spanberger continued. “I look forward to continuing my work on the Agriculture Committee, and I will continue reaching across the aisle in the U.S. House to build bipartisan support for legislation that improves profitability, increases market stability, and incentivizes innovation in the American ag industry for years to come.”

Spanberger voted to pass the landmark United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement trade deal in Dec. 2019 after gathering input from her constituents. To secure provisions that bolster the Virginian economy in the deal, Spanberger met with administration officials and Vice President Mike Pence at the White House prior to the bill’s enactment.

In 2018, Virginia exported $4.3 billion in goods to Mexico and Canada, according to the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative.

“Congresswoman Spanberger supports agriculture and farmers through her position on the House Agriculture Committee, but also by listening to the needs of farmers, being a vocal advocate, and by voting to support agriculture on vital issues,” Wayne F. Pryor, president of the Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, said in a statement. “We truly appreciate Rep. Spanberger for being a friend to the farmers of Virginia, especially at a time when the farm economy is challenged, and farmers are struggling.”

In June, Spanberger introduced the Growing Climate Solutions Act with bipartisan support. If passed, the bill would break down technical assistance and information barriers to assist farmers and agricultural producers in accessing carbon credit markets. 

Spanberger conducted face-to-face visits to nine farms and agribusinesses in her district over two days in Aug. 2019, according to a press release. These meetings allowed her to gather input directly from her constituents and learn what federal measures would be best to fortify growth in rural communities.

“The American Farm Bureau Federation gives the Friend of Farm Bureau award to members of Congress who have supported Farm Bureau’s position on policy issues, as demonstrated by their voting records, and who were nominated by their respective state Farm Bureaus and approved by the AFBF Board of Directors,” Paul Schlegel, AFBF vice president of public affairs, said in a statement. “I am pleased to inform you that you have been selected as a Friend of Farm Bureau for the 116th Congress.”

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