Tag: Policies

Maryland Farm Bureau Convention: New Policies, Programming, Awards and Shared Knowledge Wrap-up

Maryland Farm Bureau Convention: New Policies, Programming, Awards and Shared Knowledge Wrap-up

DAVIDSONVILLE, MD. (Dec. 13, 2021) — The Maryland farming community reunited and learned from high-profile guests, and about current issues, such as the The Center for Food Integrity and the next U.S. farm bill. The Maryland Farm Bureau Annual Convention and Meeting of Delegates and CyberAg Symposium was held last week in Cambridge at a new venue accommodating their large turnout this year.

Highlights included adopting and updating policy, recognizing members’ achievements on the state and national level, networking over awards presented, and the election of officers.

Among the keynote speakers, American Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall said, “In my travels across our great land, I have seen farmers’ and ranchers’ dedication to their farms and communities. I have also seen the challenges we face across farm country, from natural disasters to government regulation and everything in between. But I have hope for the future because Farm Bureau members are resilient as we grow a safe and sustainable food, fiber and fuel supply and put in the time to create the policies that will help us grow a better tomorrow.”

The first CyberAg Symposium held with the convention, was held pre-conference and addressed being prepared for growing threats with cybersecurity, even in the ag community.

“The Maryland Farm Bureau Cyber Sunday event allowed us to fulfill our mission of outreach, awareness and education to the food/ag supply chain about cyber threats,” said Andrew Rose, managing director of CyberAg. “Attendees learned who the ag adversaries are, what they want, how they attack, how to mitigate/respond, and what threats are coming next. Because of the help and support of the Maryland Farm Bureau, the level of cybersecurity awareness has been raised in the agricultural community.”

Awards
For the first time, both a male and female Ag Ambassador were chosen in place of the past Miss Maryland Agriculture scholarship program. The winners are Jaclyn Bryant, Frederick County (sophomore at Frederick Community College), and Xavier Cox, Prince Georges County (junior at University of Maryland Eastern Shore).

Bob Tibbs, Harford County Charolais producer, received the Distinguished Service Award for his lifetime of achievements, awards and service, including being named a Harford County Treasure. The Agri-Woman of the Year award went to Evelyn Wilcom, Monrovia dairy farmer and retired nurse, for her over 60 years of service to the Farm Bureau and numerous other organizations.

Garrett County won an AFBF County Activity of Excellence, while on the state level, Carroll County and Howard County won Silver Bowl awards for receiving top scores in all program areas. Program areas include leadership, outreach and more.

The Young Farmers’ competition is a highlight that showcases the upcoming generation of farming leaders. Winners are:

  • Discussion Meet: Logan Yearsley, Prince George’s County (College Park)
  • Collegiate Discussion Meet: Olivia Scuderi, Montgomery County (Gaithersburg, attends University of Maryland)
  • Excellence in Agriculture: Katie Stevens, Frederick County (Frederick)
  • Achievement Award: Emmy Dallam, Harford County (Bel Air)

In another first this year, the Leopold Conservation Award was awarded to a Maryland farm or landowner, with the winner announced at the convention. Persistence Creek Farm and the Warring family of Faulkner won the honor in Maryland’s inaugural year.

Every two years, the American Farm Bureau Federation bestows upon select members of Congress recognition to those who work tirelessly to support the interest of farmers across the country and rural America. Senator Chris Van Hollen was one of seven members of Maryland’s congressional delegation to receive the Friend of Farm Bureau award for the 116th Congress. His award was presented in person during the convention.

Policy Updates
Delegates amending or making policy annually shapes the landscape of Maryland agriculture. This year, a national policy resolution from the convention affects wildlife management on federal lands; “We support requiring federal agencies to manage wildlife populations on federal lands in a way that minimizes damage to neighboring private property including crop damage and livestock depredation.” 

On the state level, new policies were introduced on cyber-ag security for the food chain and on urban agriculture. The Maryland Farm Bureau supports research and implementation of cyber-ag security programs to protect local and state supply chains.

The association bolstered its support of urban agriculture by adding policies, such as modifying zoning laws, grants, training programs and use of Open Space funds. The details can be found here. [[https://www.mdfarmbureau.com/wp-content/uploads/2021/12/2022-State-Policy-Final.pdf]]

Elections
The following Maryland Farm Bureau officers and district directors who were up for re-election to the state board of directors won their respective elections:

  • President – Wayne Stafford of Cecil County
  • First Vice President – John Draper of Queen Anne’s County
  • Second Vice President – Jonathan Quinn of Kent County
  • Billy Bishoff – District 1, Garrett County
  • Ashley Barber – District 2, Carroll County
  • Jamie Tiralla – District 3, Calvert County
  • Jo-Ann Chason – District 4, Baltimore County
  • Marshall Cahall – District 5, Kent County
  • Mary Lou Brown – District 6, Dorchester County

Ed Heikes of Talbot County was elected to serve on the MDFB Political Action Committee.

Another pre-conference event was the Womens’ Leadership Committee meeting, where they added a new position and elected Connie Palmer of Frederick County as its second vice president.

Community Outreach
Maryland Farm Bureau also celebrates its Young Farmers committee that collected 597 pounds of food donated through the Young Farmers Fill-A-Ford Campaign, in partnership with Preston Ford and the Maryland Food Bank, at last week’s event.

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MARYLAND FARM BUREAU®, INC. is a 501(c)(5) federation that serves as the united voice of Maryland farm families. Our organizational strength comes from the active participation of over 10,000 individual and family members who belong to the state’s 23 local county Farm Bureau organizations. Since 1915, Maryland Farm Bureau has been committed to protecting and growing agriculture and preserving rural life. Maryland Farm Bureau is a proud member of the American Farm Bureau® Federation. Learn more at MDFarmBureau.com. 

Media Contact:
Amber Pearson | Maryland Farm Bureau, Inc. (TSN Communications)
573.268.6853 | amber@tsncommunications.com

Benefits of farm equipment asset tracking

Benefits of farm equipment asset tracking

The following information is provided by Nationwide®, the #1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.*

Businesses have employed an evolving range of asset tracking tools to help keep track of things like equipment and product inventory since the 1960s. Today, asset tracking is readily available to farmers challenged by managing growing farm machinery and equipment lineups.

Asset tracking platforms like Zubie Asset Trak offer farmers benefits in both the short and long term. And with today’s technology, it’s easier than ever to create value and ROI from proactive asset tracking. 

Know farm equipment whereabouts and improve field operations 

If your farm’s growing, that may mean a lot more farm machinery and equipment than in the past. Whether it’s in the field, in the farm shop or anywhere in between, asset tracking creates a new set of eyes for your equipment.

A system like Zubie’s provides real-time location data so you always know where farm equipment is located. During the busy seasons of planting or harvest, this data enables you to make informed short-term decisions in scheduling field operations and managing workers to maximize productivity.

There’s a protective component to asset tracking, too. Systems like Zubie Asset Trak enable the user to create “geofences” that dictate where equipment can be operated. If a piece of equipment is outside that fence, the operator may be working in the wrong place or the equipment has fallen into the wrong hands. Asset tracking enables you to take the right corrective action, whether it’s a simple phone call to an operator or alerting the authorities that your equipment may have been stolen.

Get up to 15% off Zubie Asset Trak devices

Now is a good time to consider adding asset tracking to your growing equipment and machinery lineups. Through an exclusive discount, Nationwide farm policyholders can get up to 15% off Zubie Asset Trak devices and 1- to 3-year service subscriptions without sharing policy information.

Email nationwide@zubie.com to learn more about Zubie Asset Trak and how to integrate the technology into your farm or ranch.

Visit AgInsightCenter.com for more expert tips and information from Nationwide. 

*A.M. Best Market Share Report 2020. Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.© 2021 Nationwide

Celebrating National Ag Day today and every day

Celebrating National Ag Day today and every day

The following information is provided by Nationwide®, the #1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.*

National Ag Day is celebrated March 22 this year and is the perfect time to recognize the hard-working men and women of American agriculture for all they do. From keeping us fed, clothed and fueled to being the economic engine that powers rural communities, they provide so much to everyday life. That alone is something to be celebrated. But so is the fact the agriculture sector is always adjusting and evolving to keep up with ever-changing needs of customers. At Nationwide, we are too. 

Evolving Together

Technology is evolving faster than ever in agriculture today. Crop farmers, for example, are using new tools to improve crop productivity, reduce environmental impacts and improve worker safety. Other innovations help livestock producers improve animal health, work more efficiently and improve environmental sustainability. Agribusinesses are evolving how they connect with farmers and ranchers through things like digital platforms and telematics.

Staying up on advances like these can be a challenge. Nationwide is committed to helping farmers and ranchers stay ahead of today’s fast pace of evolving technology and how it affects their operations.

“Farmers and ranchers today have incredible technology at their disposal. But it can sometimes be difficult to identify what’s truly needed to make real improvements at the farm level,” said Brad Liggett, President of Nationwide Agribusiness. “Nationwide is committed to helping our customers be resilient and ready for tomorrow’s challenges.”

Working to protect your next

This year, we’re celebrating National AgricultureDay by doubling down on our commitment to protect your next. It’s a role that entails not just providing the right insurance products and services but also staying on the leading edge of technology, tools and practices farmers and ranchers depend on to get their jobs done, today and tomorrow.

“Protecting your next means being there for today and being ready for tomorrow,” Liggett said. “At Nationwide, we are always challenging ourselves to make sure we’re providing the products and services that will enable farmers and ranchers to do what they do best. And protecting your next is a big part of our commitment to the farm and ranch families and agribusinesses we serve.”

Ag Day every day 

National Ag Day is just one day out of the year. But for the #1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S., it’s a daily commitment that has no end. Throughout the month of March, Nationwide is hosting a series of company-wide employee events to highlight the diversity of ag across the U.S.and to celebrate Nationwide’s longstanding ag heritage.
 
“We want National Ag Day to be about showing the world just how connected agriculture is to everyone’s daily lives,” Liggett said. “But it’s just one of 365 days a year that we spend looking ahead to make sure we’re meeting the insurance and risk management needs of farm and ranch families, today and well into the future.” ThisNational AgricultureDay, let’s plan how to protect your next together. Get in touchwith a Nationwide Farm Certified agent or visit NationwideAgribusiness.comto get started.
 

*A.M. Best Market Share Report 2020. Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle, and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company.© 2021 Nationwide

3 Life Insurance Options to Secure Your Farm

3 Life Insurance Options to Secure Your Farm

The following information is provided by Nationwide®, the #1 farm and ranch insurer in the U.S.*

Life insurance can protect your family and your business in more ways than you might think. If you’re a beginning farmer, it can provide your family with financial stability in your absence. It is also instrumental in helping your farm continue after illness, retirement or if you pass away. It can even help provide needed funds should something happen to one of your operation’s most valuable employees. Here are three examples of how the right life insurance coverage can protect you:

1. Term policies can help beginning farmers

If you’re younger or just beginning your farm, you’ve likely taken on some debt… maybe even a hefty amount of it. After covering your family’s living expenses and paying on your farm’s debt, there may not be much left over in your family’s bank account.

That challenge is exactly why term insurance is so important. Term policies provide life insurance coverage at the lowest cost and can help your family cover your personal or business debts. It can also create an emergency cash fund or provide needed financial support while your family gets back on their feet.

“As a farmer just getting started, you may have incurred personal debt in order to finance the growth of your farm. This debt has a life of its own and will survive your premature passing. This debt means that less of your assets will be available to support your loved ones,” according to Nationwide Advanced Consulting Group DirectorSteve Hamilton. “A level term life insurance policy that protects your family through the life of your loan is an easy and cost-effective way to help make sure your debt does not burden your loved ones after your passing.”

2. Universal life policies for established farmers

If you’re a more established farmer with a higher-value operation, there’s an additional benefit that can come with a permanent life insurance policy. Whether you’re concerned about protecting your family or your savings, universal life policies can provide:

  • Permanent death benefit protection
  • Income tax-free death benefits for your family
  • Additional source of savings with tax benefits
  • Source of tax-free supplemental income in retirement
 
“More established farm operators can consider adding a permanent, cash-accumulating life insurance policy to their personal balance sheet,” said Hamilton. “Farms, land and equipment all possess varying degrees of liquidity risk. If your family needs funds quickly after your passing, an asset may not sell quickly or profitably when there’s a lack of demand. Whether the policy allows your family to bide time for a better offeror allows your family to keep the tractor running if you’re not around, a permanent, cash-accumulating life insurance policy can become the cornerstone of a farming family’s financial plan. 
 

3. A survivorship life policy for the future of your farm 

When planning the future of your operation, the right life insurance policy can help ease the financial pains of transitioning the farm. A survivorship life insurance policy is an option to consider.

“A buyout of your farm funded with a survivorship life insurance policy can ensure that your farm’s successors have the funds to purchase your operation or that your spouse and children that may not work the farm receive the financial benefits of your life’s work,” Hamilton added. “Even if the next generation is not your successor, a buyout funded with life insurance amongst future or current co-owners can help the farm continue operating while your family is financially taken care of.

”If you’re interested in exploring your life insurance options to secure your family’s or your farm’s financial future, don’t wait.Get connected to a financial specialist who can help protect your farm, family and future by visiting Nationwide.com/YourLand. 

*A.M. Best Market Share Report 2020. Products underwritten by Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company and Affiliated Companies. Not all Nationwide affiliated companies are mutual companies, and not all Nationwide members are insured by a mutual company. Subject to underwriting guidelines, review and approval. Products and discounts not available to all persons in all states. Nationwide Investment Services Corporation, member FINRA. Nationwide, the Nationwide N and Eagle and Nationwide is on your side are service marks of Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company. ©2021 Nationwide

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