What do the Kellogg Foundation, the McCune Charitable Foundation, and the Thornburg Foundation all have in common? Besides being some of the most well-endowed and influential foundations in the U.S., they’re also partners in the Resilience in Ag program initiated by New Mexico First and hosted by the NMSU Extension Service. The Resilience in Ag program is an effort to develop a Statewide Resiliency Plan that will:
Create common ground regarding food and agriculture policies
Generate ideas for more economic value for producers and economic vitality for communities
Develop strategies to support young people who want to stay with or get back into agriculture
Address water, land-use, climate and economic challenges facing the agricultural industry
Support agriculture’s contribution to health related solution of consumers and communities
Contribute to worker, consumer and community welfare
Statewide meetings are the first step of the plan whereby they receive stakeholder input. The next step is to create a background report which analyzes data from the meeting and incorporates industry research. A task force will then be convened to draft a resiliency plan which will be refined through stakeholder sessions. The final plan, expected to be finished by July, will be used to secure funding and the implementation phase is where working groups will measure progress and adapt plan strategies.
As you can see, these initial meetings are not just listening sessions, they’re the beginning of an action plan that will be tied to real money, legislation and regulations. That explains the participation of the above named foundations. And that is also a powerful reason for NMF&LB members to attend and participate. We need your voice to represent conventional farming and ranching. Niche, organic and small scale farms have been well represented at meetings across the state but processors and large scale producers have been largely absent.
Here is a list of remaining meetings, and remember, if you’re not at the table, you’re most likely on the menu!
Farmington, Wed., March 2, 2016
Crownpoint, Thursday, March 3, 2016
Shiprock, Friday, March 4, 2016
Tucumcari, Wed., March 9, 2016 ▫
N.M. Farm & Livestock Bureau offers helping hand through Goliath
his was a difficult winter for New Mexico’s farm, ranch and dairy families as a powerful storm caused death and devastation across the eastern portion of the state. “Goliath” brought 80 mile an hour winds and 18 inches of snow the day after Christmas, affecting cattle, sheep and dairy herds.
“Agricultural families stick together and help one another out in difficult times,” says Mike White, President of New Mexico Farm & Livestock Bureau. “There are families experiencing significant financial hardship as a result of the storm so we created a Cares fund.” New Mexico Farm & Livestock Bureau Cares offers monetary aid for agricultural families affected by the storm.
“Not only do farmers, ranchers and dairymen need to replace the animals that were lost to the storm, they also need to rebuild barns and fences that were demolished by the high winds,” says Chad Smith, NMF&LB CEO. “That makes it harder to pay for medical expenses or utility bills. We just want these folks to know that we’re there for them and we have resources to help.”
Individuals and county farm bureaus are contributing to the fund in an effort to support their neighbors. Donations are tax-deductible and 100 percent of proceeds go directly to help families impacted by Goliath. To support the Cares fund, checks can be made payable to NMF&LB and sent to 2220 N. Telshor, Las Cruces, NM 88011, attn.: Cares Relief Fund.
Agricultural families in need can download an application form at www.nmflb.org. Applications will be accepted until May 1st, monies will be distributed beginning
June 1st. ▫