Kansas Farmers Union (KFU) voting delegates attended the 2011 KFU Convention at the Topeka Ramada on Dec. 2-3 to vote on policy, elect the 2012 Board of Directors and elect delegates to the National Farmers Union Convention.
Delegates, along with others, learned about federal farm policy, including what might happen in the 2012 Farm Bill, market (packing, livestock genetics, fertilizer, seed and grocery stores) concentration, Kansas’ local foods market, and much more from eight speakers from across the U.S.
Convention delegates made several new additions to Kansas Farmers Union’s policy: opposed the proposed elimination of the state corporate income tax, supported maintaining rural post offices, supported subsidy limits on crop insurance premiums coupled with conservation compliance and supported full public disclosure of all GMO ingredients through food labels.
Delegates also added that fraud and abuse of check-off resources and money must be prosecuted. Also that all check-off programs must be subject to a referendum vote by mail ballot every three years.
Special orders of business, which highlight the issues that are important in 2012, addressed interstate shipment of state inspected meat and hydraulic fracturing. Kansas Farmers Union requests that the State pursue the opportunity to sell and ship state inspected meats interstate. They also supported a moratorium on hydraulic fracturing operations until an environmental impact study proves the activities safe.
“Our state and national policy is our bible we work from representing Kansas Farmers Union members in ag and rural policy. It’s truly grass-roots,” KFU President Donn Teske said.
The KFU Board of Directors elected by the delegation are: President Donn Teske of Wheaton, Vice President Lavern Potuzak of Agenda. Representing the North District are Chris Schmidt of Oberlin, Gerard Steinlage of Corning and David Heins of Abilene. Representing the South District are Linda Hessman of Dodge City, Herb Bartel of Hillsboro and Jason Schmidt of Newton.
Delegates to the National Farmers Union Convention in Omaha on March 4-7 were also elected. They are Daryl Larson of McPherson, Chris Schmidt of Oberlin and Herb Bartel of Hillsboro.
Visit www.kansasfarmersunion.org to view the new KFU policy or contact the state office at 620-241-6630 to have a copy mailed to you.