American Agri-Women leaders connected with consumers and policy makers at the organization's 27th annual Fly-in to Washington D.C. earlier this month.
The Annual AAW Symposium: "Sustainable Development – the Impact on Agriculture" was held at the National Press Club. Visits to the Russian Embassy and Brazil Embassy gave members the opportunity to exchange in diplomatic relations.
AAW members were briefed on animal welfare issues; immigration legislation and problems facing the cattle industry. Pulitzer Prize recipient Gretchen Morgenson, author and reporter for the NY Times, was the guest lecturer. Her topic "Absence of Accountability" highlighted forced taxpayer support for "reckless companies."
Members engaged in farm child labor discussions with Department of Labor representatives Melvina Ford and Nikki McKinny. Members voiced support for the family farm as a place for productive learning.
AAW also brought their 2012 policy positions to their Congressional Representatives and Senators on the Hill. The priority issues included the 2012 Farm Bill; estate taxation; immigration reform and ag labor shortages, as well as the Land and Water Conservation Act.
More than 200 guests attended the AAW Congressional Reception in the House Agriculture Committee Room. This year's "Champions of Agriculture" recognitions were awarded to Senator Debbie Stabenow, (D-Mich.) and Representative Cynthia Lummis, (R-Wyo.).
AAW President Karen Yost commended the women for their support of agriculture.
"These outstanding individuals have dedicated themselves to uniting members in congress to ensure that legislation supports the integrity of American food and fiber production," she said.
For more details about the American Agri-Women, visit www.americanagriwomen.org.