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NSP sponsors industry leaders in Washington D.C.

The National Sorghum Producers is leading a delegation of sorghum growers and industry leaders to Washington D.C., Feb. 11 to meet with Members of Congress, Senators and other key leaders in legislative and regulatory arenas. NSP's D.C. Fly-In is an annual event that gives producers the opportunity to make their priorities known to their representatives and key decision makers in D.C.

One of the highlights of the Fly-In Feb. 11 has been a meeting with new Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack at the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In the meeting, Vilsack laid out his priorities as he begins his duties as Secretary of Agriculture and outlined his plans for the upcoming term. Among other things, he stressed the importance of utilizing carbon credits in agricultural markets, specifically in sorghum. He also discussed the importance of encouraging and maintaining conservation and environmentally friendly production practices.

Participants will also have the chance in mid-February to meet with new USDA appointees including Michael Hand, Acting Administrator of the Risk Management Agency, to address concerns about crop insurance coverage for sorghum. Additionally, the group will meet with Acting Farm Service Agency Administrator Dennis Taitano and Natural Resource Conservation Service Acting Administrator Douglas Lawrence to introduce him to sorghum, the water-sipping crop.

On the Hill, delegates will be meeting with Chairman of the House Agriculture Committee Colin Peterson, and Ranking Member Frank Lucas as well as the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry and their home state Senators and Members of Congress.

Sorghum leaders representing Colorado are Terry and Marcella Swanson. Leaders from Kansas are Sue Schulte, Greg Krissek and Will Bramlett. Gerald Simonsen, Donald Bloss, Jacob Geis--a Sorghum Foundation scholarship recipient--and John Dolnicek will represent Nebraska. Delegates from Texas are Brian McCuistion, David Thomas, Dan Krienke, Roxann Wiginton, Danny Beyer, Benjamin Smith, Kristin Heinmann and Lance Layton who is also a recipient of the Sorghum Foundation scholarship. New Mexico producer Toby Bostwick--Chairman of the NSP Board of Directors--and Matt Lansford of New Mexico will attend as well as Kenneth Rose of Oklahoma. The NSP staff will include Hannah Lipps and Shelee Padgett.

NSP represents U.S. sorghum producers. The organization serves as the voice of the sorghum industry coast to coast through legislative representation, regulatory representation, and education. To learn more about NSP, visit www.sorghumgrowers.com.

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