Current Issues

Lighthizer: NAFTA has failed many americans

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From agweb.com It’s an historical day for the United States as the first round of negotiations to rewrite the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), got underway Wednesday morning in Washington D.C. In effect since January 1994, NAFTA created a Free Trade Zone between Canada, Mexico and the United States. President Donald Trump has called the trade pact “the worst ... Read More »

Impasse on water bill means no capital budget for now

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By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist On July 24, the Washington State Legislature adjourned after 193 consecutive days in session without passing either a state capital budget or legislation addressing the Hirst State Supreme Court water right decision. While a final capital budget providing more than $4 billion for constructions projects across the state had been agreed to by negotiators, the ... Read More »

D.C. fly-in meets with success on trade, research, crop insurance

Members of the Washington group were able to meet with Ray Starling, special assistant to the president for agriculture, trade and food assistance, at the White House. They were joined by representatives from Washington State University (WSU) and U.S. Wheat Associates (USW). Pictured from left are Steve Mercer, USW vice president of communications; Chris Keane, vice president for research at WSU; Colleen Kerr, vice president for government relations and external affairs at WSU; Michelle Hennings, Washington Association of Wheat Growers (WAWG) executive director; Kirk Schulz, WSU president; Starling; Marci Green, WAWG vice president; Derek Sandison, director of the Washington State Department of Agriculture; and Jim Moyer, associate dean of research in WSU’s College of Agricultural, Human, and Natural Resource Sciences.

In mid-July, officers and staff of the Washington Association of Wheat Growers (WAWG) flew into the other Washington to talk about the impacts of proposed budget cuts to wheat growers. The group jammed more than 20 meetings into four days, including a visit to the White House to meet with Ray Starling, special assistant to the president for agriculture, trade ... Read More »

PNW states’ congressional request for falling numbers funding passes appropriations committee markups

The Hagberg-Perten Falling Number Test measures the amount of time it takes for a stopper to plunge through a slurry of flour and boiling water. The short the time, the more falling number damage the wheat has.

Last week, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved a Pacific Northwest request for $1 million in falling numbers research funding. The request was also approved by the House Appropriations Committee earlier this month. The Washington Association of Wheat Growers (WAWG) thanks Congress for recognizing the devastating impacts falling numbers has had on the region’s wheat industry and the need for more ... Read More »

Legislative update: Legislature adjourned, but no water fix, no capital budget

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By Diana Carlen WAWG Lobbyist Friday, July 21, the state Legislature adjourned on the final day of the third special session without passing a capital budget or a fix to a Supreme Court decision addressing water rights known as the Hirst decision. Lawmakers were in session for 193 days this year on what was scheduled to be a 105-day session. While ... Read More »

Crop insurance is vital part of producers’ financial plans

The Berg's wheat crop in 2015 during a multiyear drought.

How many people can go multiple years without being paid for the work they do? For farmers, that situation is all too common, as a crop can be destroyed by hail, fire, drought, etc., ruining a year’s worth of work very quickly. The only way to survive is through crop insurance. Crop insurance is a vital part of producers’ financial ... Read More »

Without overseas trade, Washington wheat industry would suffer

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With approximately 90 percent of Washington’s wheat being exported overseas, it isn’t an exaggeration to say that trade is the lifeblood of Washington wheat farmers. The agriculture industry relies heavily on funding from the Market Access Program (MAP) and the Foreign Market Development (FMD) Program to develop new markets and support existing ones. Studies have shown that these programs generate ... Read More »

D.C. trip to shine light on impacts of proposed budget cuts

DC House chamber

Officers and staff of the Washington Association of Wheat Growers (WAWG) are in Washington, D.C., to talk to legislators about the possible impacts of proposed federal budget cuts in three areas critical to Washington wheat farmers: research, trade, and crop insurance. “This trip is focused on demonstrating to legislators how the Trump Administration’s proposed budget cuts in research, trade and crop ... Read More »

WAWG: Removing dams would be devastating

Ice Harbor Lock and dam

From Washington Ag Network Michelle Hennings, Executive Director of the Washington Association of Wheat Growers told the Washington Ag Network removing the dams would be devastating, since 90 percent of wheat grown here is exported. “The Columbia River/Snake River system is the top wheat export gateway in the United States and the third larget export gateway in the world.  Over ... Read More »

NAWG leadership address growers at June board meeting

David Schemm (right), a wheat farmer from Kansas and current president of the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG), and Chandler Goule (second from right), CEO of NAWG, kicked off a visit to the Pacific Northwest (PNW) by attending the June state board meeting to tell growers what’s going on in Washington, D.C., and what issues NAWG is addressing.

By Trista Crossley It’s not unusual to have visitors at the Washington Association of Wheat Growers’ (WAWG) monthly board meetings, but last month’s visitors literally flew across the country to be there. David Schemm, a wheat farmer from Kansas and current president of the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG), and Chandler Goule, CEO of NAWG, kicked off a visit ... Read More »