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Iowa Corn Growers Association
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Grassroots to Washington D.C!

Posted on July 25, 2013 at 8:00 AM by Iowa Corn

Grassroots and CAT team visiting a cucumber
farm in Delaware 

This month I was one of the lucky grassroots members to go to the National Corn Growers Association Corn Congress in Washington DC.  This is an experience that has furthered my interest and service in the ICGA and NCGA.  While out in DC we met with our government officials, toured the city, and met with farmers from all over the country.  The idea that all farmers (no matter what they grow) have the same views is a real eye opener.  We all struggle with the same issues all over the country.

 The place that I thought was most interesting was the NASS (National Agriculture Statistics Services) office in the United States Department of Agriculture building.  When the national reports are made they have a complete lock down.  There is no communications in or out during the process.  They go to great lengths by having their own servers, telephone lines, and even have the ability to cut off all wifi devices!  I know that many of you find that the reports may seem skewed, but the first report is done with the acres that are going to be planted not final acres actually planted.  The states all send in the reports and they come in to the NASS office encrypted.  No one person ever gets to see more than one state until the doors are locked.   

This is a job that I would not want.  They run the numbers and give what they think to be the correct numbers for that crop.  Right or wrong this is what helps drive our economy. Thanks for the chance to see how this all works.  I hope that I get a bigger roll to play in the future!

Mike Poeppe is President of the Palo Alto County Corn Growers Association. Mike Poeppe lives in Graettinger, IA and farms near Cylinder, IA.  Along with corn and soybeans he raises horses and sells seed.  He is married to Mandy and they have two teenage girls, Brittany and Erin. 

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