Ag Sector Board

AEM’s Ag Sector Board met in-person Feb. 22 in Washington, D.C. to finalize their 2023 priorities and provide direction on initiatives working to support those priorities. Ag Sector Board Chair and AGCO Senior Vice President, Distribution, Americas Bill Hurley called the meeting to order and welcomed new board member Shane Coates, JCB Vice President, Agriculture.

EPA Collaboration

Nick Tindall, AEM Senior Director, Regulatory Affairs introduced EPA’s Senior Ag Advisor Rodney Snyder. Snyder commended AEM on growing awareness of agricultural equipment technologies through events like last year’s Celebration of Modern Agriculture on the National Mall. He went on to discuss issues that EPA is working on which have a direct impact on agriculture and ag equipment sales, and which may provide opportunity for collaboration:

  • Biofuels: With the new Administration’s role, EPA moved forward with a to allow year round sales of E15 fuel last year as well as to propose a 3-year RFS rule, providing stability for growers.
  • Plant protection and endangered species: EPA plans to work with chemical and equipment manufacturers as it reassesses labelling in certain regions with regard to endangered species inhabiting those regions
  • Waters of the U.S.: Over 120,000 comments, including many from agriculture stakeholders, were submitted to EPA towards defining WOTUS jurisdiction. EPA used these comments to work toward appropriate agricultural exclusions from the Administration’s perspective
  • Clean Air Act: EPA fully supports a farmers’ right to repair, but not their right to emissions controls

Farm Bill

AEM Government Relations Manager Autumn Lankford led a Farm Bill “listening session” to confirm the AEM Ag Sector Board’s priority Farm Bill issues. Top items included:

  • Precision ag adoption (includes the PAL and PRECISE Acts)
  • Rural broadband
  • Biofuels
  • Risk management
  • National ROPS Rebate Program

It was noted that the Farm Bill will be a focus of the AEM Fly-In being held in Washington, D.C. Sept. 19-20 this year.

Key Challenges Ahead

Board members identified some of the key challenges they foresee in the upcoming year. Those included:

  • Machine cybersecurity
  • Supply chain issues
  • Food security (especially as relates to the Russia/Ukraine war)
  • Labor/workforce
  • Safety as relates to illegal tampering
  • Economy/interest rates

Commodity Classic

The Board received an update on the Commodity Classic trade show taking place March 9-11 in Orlando, Florida. AEM is an official partner of the show and is sponsoring the Agriculture Industry Electronics Foundation Plugfest to be held there for the second time. Farmers can see competing manufacturers collaborating - literally plugging their equipment in against each other to ensure interoperability.

AEM will also again be presenting the Davidson Prize at the show. This award recognizes the cream of the crop of the ASABE (American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers) AE50 Award winning new agriculture technologies.

Machine Cybersecurity

AEM’s Senior Director, Agriculture Anita Sennett noted that AEM is in the process of launching a cross-sector Cybersecurity Committee to focus specifically on machine cybersecurity. One of the committee’s first tasks will be to explore the potential of holding an industry cyber-hacking challenge, similar to those conducted by the auto and trucking industries.

2023 Priorities

The Board confirmed their 2023 priorities, including the addition of “technology issues”:

  • Maintain and grow AEM’s global ag leadership position
  • Advocate for ag equipment industry with policymakers and regulators
  • Strengthen and grow AEM’s ag member business
  • Promote agriculture as a sustainability and climate solution
  • Address technology issues (focus on interoperability and machine cybersecurity)

The next meeting of the Ag Sector Board is scheduled for July 26 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. For more information about the Ag Sector Board, contact AEM's Curt Blades at

 For more AEM news and updates, subscribe to the AEM Industry Advisor