Contact: Melisa Augusto, 202-314-3191

WASHINGTON (Jan. 28, 2014) – National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson issued the following statement in response to President Obama’s State of the Union address:

“NFU is encouraged by the president’s commitment to our country’s energy future. Passage of the farm bill conference report, with an investment of $900 million in renewable energy, will take the initial step toward reaching the president’s goal. As the president said, ‘climate change is a fact,’ and America’s farmers and ranchers are positioned to be a part of the solution.

“The president placed emphasis on bringing jobs home to America, and ‘Made in the USA’ goods. Family farmers and ranchers, too, are proud of the fruits of their labor, which is why we stand up for consumers by supporting Country-of-Origin Labeling (COOL).

“Fair trade is important to family farmers, ranchers and rural communities, and I hope the president changes the United States’ approach to negotiating trade deals. We must deal with systemic issues, such as currency manipulation, and set a strategic goal of reducing our enormous trade deficits, which directly harm U.S. economic growth and kill too many American jobs.

“Immigration reform is critical to farmers and ranchers across the country. I hope Congress takes the president’s sentiments to heart and makes comprehensive immigration reform its next priority. This ought to be a priority for liberals, moderates and conservatives alike, as it will reduce the deficit by $1 trillion dollars in two decades.

“The president’s message tonight is that we are ‘ready for a year of action,’ and passing the farm bill would be a great start. NFU will continue to work with the administration and Congress to ensure that the next farm bill is passed and effectively implemented.”

National Farmers Union has been working since 1902 to protect and enhance the economic well-being and quality of life for family farmers, ranchers and rural communities through advocating grassroots-driven policy positions adopted by its membership.