Farmers, ranchers discuss farm, food policy
(CORPUS CHRISTI, Texas)—Voting delegates stamped their position on food labeling and regulatory control of imitation meat and dairy products at Texas Farm Bureau’s (TFB) 85th Annual Meeting.
Eminent domain and electronic logging devices also topped the list of concerns during the policy session, which concluded yesterday in Corpus Christi.
“Food labels are a trending issue for both consumers and farmers and ranchers,” TFB President Russell Boening said. “It’s an issue that’s going to continue to grow, and accurate labels are essential for consumer decision-making. That’s why our delegates felt it was important to establish policy for the organization.”
The delegates focused on the topic and agreed on a policy position that defines clear labeling boundaries as the imitation products become more widely available.
Cell-cultured protein should not be labeled as meat, and no mixture of cell-cultured and meat from a live animal—livestock, poultry, fish and wildlife—should be labeled or marketed as “meat,” according to the delegates.
Delegates voted to strengthen private property protections when landowners deal with eminent domain. They said property takers should notify and serve in a timely manner all paperwork to a landowner and their legal counsel for any potential eminent domain proceeding.
They also support requiring utility companies or other entities holding an easement to return a landowner’s property to the condition it was in prior to installing or replacing infrastructure.
Delegates registered opposition to federally-mandated regulations for electronic logging devices (ELD) for transportation of agricultural commodities, livestock and small fleet operators.
In addition, delegates voted to strengthen border security and support virtual fencing as a means to do so.
In other action, Mark Chamblee of Smith County was re-elected as vice president and Scott Frazier of Nueces County was re-elected secretary-treasurer.
Four new directors were also elected.
Walt Hagood of Wolfforth is the new District 2 state director. He is a cotton farmer and a former president and board member of the Lynn-Garza County Farm Bureau. Hagood has participated in TFB’s leadership program, FarmLead, and served on TFB’s Resolutions and Cotton Advisory committees. He and his wife Glinda have two daughters and five grandkids.
The new District 4 state director is John Paul Dineen III of Waxahachie. He grows wheat, corn grain sorghum, cattle, pigs and hay and markets products directly through their Yellow Farmhouse brand. He previously chaired TFB’s Young Farmer & Rancher Advisory Committee, served on TFB’s Resolutions Committee and represented TFB at Earth Day Dallas. He and his wife Heather have four children.
Mickey Edwards of Lampasas is the new District 8 state director. He raises cattle, grows hay and manages wildlife. Edwards has served on the Lampasas County Farm Bureau board of directors for more than 20 years, including several years as president. He was also a member of the TFB Resolutions Committee and Vision 2020 Committee. He and his wife Jane have two children.
District 10’s new state director is Pete Pawelek of Jourdanton. He raises cattle and backgrounds calves on small grains. He also grows hay and cotton. Pawelek has served on the Atascosa County Farm Bureau board of directors and served in all officer positions, including president for eight years. He and his wife Lynse have four children.