VilsackMore than 16,000 enthusiastic visitors to the National Mall in Washington, D.C. got a first-hand view of the latest technology in American agriculture and learned how it enables manufacturers as well as farmers, ranchers, and growers to feed and fuel the world while protecting natural resources for our nation today and generations to come. United States Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and United States Deputy Secretary of Agriculture Dr. Jewel Bronaugh joined AEM staff, equipment manufacturers, grower groups, agriscience companies, innovators and educators, schoolchildren, and the general public to celebrate National Ag Day and tour AEM’s inaugural Celebration of Modern Agriculture on the National Mall. 

The Secretary thanked AEM for “bringing us this opportunity to celebrate National Ag Day on the Mall...and for giving people the opportunity to understand the commitment of American agriculture to innovation, creativity, and sustainability,” before touring exhibits with Deputy Secretary Jewel Bronaugh. The Secretary and Deputy Secretary got up close and personal with the technology and products that enable farmers to be economically and environmentally sustainable, and the Secretary remarked that Abraham Lincoln, who signed legislation in 1862 which created the USDA, “would be excited about the number of innovations and creative solutions American agriculture will come up with as it leads our country in an effort to mitigate and adapt to a changing climate.” 

While recognizing the many VIPs in attendance, Secretary Vilsack invited a young woman from Nelson County High School FFA to the stage and offered her his seat. “It is National Ag Day, it is your day, it is your day,” the Secretary told her to applause from the crowd.   

“We greatly appreciate the leadership of Secretary Vilsack and Deputy Secretary Bronaugh on behalf of farmers and manufacturers,” said Kip Eideberg, AEM senior vice president of government and industry relations. “We urge them to work with us to build a sustainable future of safe and abundant food, fiber, feed and renewable fuel for our nation and the world.” 

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.) and Ranking Member Senator John Boozman (R-Ark.) also toured the exhibit and got a first-hand view of farming equipment and agriculture technology. “We are grateful to the Chairwoman and the Ranking Member for their forceful advocacy for American agriculture and appreciate the strong bipartisan message their joint visit sends to lawmakers on both sides of aisle,” said Eideberg. United States Senators Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.), Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-Miss.), and Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Representative Cheri Bustos (D-Ill.), and staff from more than 30 congressional offices, also toured the exhibit with the AEM Advocacy Team, making stops at AGCO, Case IH, CLAAS, DeLaval, Firestone, GEA, John Deere, Kubota, Kuhn, Lely, New Holland, Mahindra, and Topcon.  

As Washington begins crafting the next Farm Bill, the AEM Advocacy Team urged lawmakers to set aside their differences and seize the opportunity to deliver big wins for American farmers and manufacturers. At the top of that list is passage of the Precision Agriculture Loan (PAL) Act, expanding broadband access for rural Americans, and better integrating conservation goals with agricultural production. 

“We can think of no better way to remind Democrats and Republicans of the urgent need to support American agriculture than to bring modern farm equipment to their doorstep in our nation’s capital,” said Eideberg. “During the two days, we made the case for why we need smart policies to support and strengthen rural America. For centuries, rural America has driven our country’s economic growth and provided us with food and fuel. Washington must do all it can to ensure the strength and resilience of America’s agriculture community in these challenging times.”

Ag on the Mall -- 2022

AEM Hosts USDA Secretary Vilsack, USDA Deputy Secretary Bronaugh, U.S. Senators and Representatives, as well as congressional staff for its inaugural Celebration of Modern Agriculture on the National Mall.

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