MSU ag leaders visit D.C. to discuss Mississippi matters

The Farm Bill, conservation programs, and food and nutrition services. These are just a few of the topics Division of Agriculture, Forestry, and Veterinary Medicine (DAFVM) leaders at Mississippi State University discussed with policymakers in D.C. during their visit in early June.

“Our policymakers vote on legislation that affects agriculture and natural resources in this state, so we do our best to provide them with research and background information on issues so they can make an informed decision,” said DAFVM Vice President Dr. Keith Coble.

people sitting down talking

The current Farm Bill, the Agriculture Improvement Act of 2018, expires at the end of the year. As new legislation is developed, open communication between university experts and policymakers is essential.

“We’re connected to the industries in our state. We know their concerns, and we try to meet their needs. Communication with our policymakers is imperative to accomplishing that.”  

The week prior to the visit, staff members from D.C. toured the main campus at Mississippi State, as well as experiment and research stations and farms around the state to learn about the current agricultural and natural resource climate in the state.

people standing in field

“We were able to follow up with some of the same staffers who took the tour the week before and had the opportunity to debrief about the areas they visited,” said Coble.

DAFVM Associate Vice President Dr. Ashli Brown said, “When you look at who is making an impact with our senators and our congressmen, MSU has a large number of alumni on Capitol Hill. They use us as a resource as they have questions when developing policy and are informing our government.”

Marty Fuller, senior consultant with Cornerstone Government Affairs, called personnel within the Division of Agriculture, Forestry, and Veterinary Medicine “a trusted source of unbiased scientific information.”

“The Mississippi Congressional Delegation understands the vital role that the Division of Agriculture, Forestry and Veterinary Medicine plays in providing timely research and outreach to our stakeholders. This long-standing relationship between MSU leaders and Congress is well-recognized throughout the country. It is essential that these strong bonds continue to enhance the overall economy of our state and the resulting quality of life that accrues,” said Fuller.

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