Giving Michigan agriculture a voice
Throughout the year, Michigan Farm Bureau members and policy staff work to implement the grassroots policies established by the membership at the Annual Meeting. Here are just a few of the many Farm Bureau successes:
Farm Bureau supported a 2022-23 state budget that provided a 20% funding increase to the Michigan Department of Agriculture & Rural Development. Notably, it included: $53M for MSU to create new, state-of-the-art greenhouse and dairy teaching and research facilities; $50M to improve supply chain, infrastructure and workforce processes impacted by the pandemic; $3M for the Michigan Alliance for Animal Agriculture; and $3M for local conservation district operations.
More than 330 county Farm Bureau members participated in regional Lansing Legislative Seminar events where they spent time with state representatives and senators talking about issues important to Michigan farm families. Additionally, nearly 100 members spoke with members of Congress and D.C. decisionmakers as part of the organization’s Washington Legislative Seminar.
Throughout the year, more than 200 public policy committee members work to foster and maintain relationships with local, state and federal elected officials through local meetings, events and farm tours.
In the November 2022 midterm election, 81 of Michigan Farm Bureau’s AgriPac-endorsed Friends of Agriculture were successful in their races. Additionally, there are 8 active farmers serving in the state legislature.
Academy for Political Leadership
The fourth class of the Academy for Political Leadership graduated with seven county Farm Bureau participants learning about what it takes to run for public office and how to support candidates as campaign staff or volunteers.
Water Use and Quality
Farm Bureau continuously advocates on behalf of farmers to ensure state and federal initiatives seek to use science-based practices and quality data to conserve and improve our water resources in the Western Lake Erie Basin, Saginaw Bay Watershed, and beyond.
Farm Bureau has a strong presence in a variety of voluntary initiatives throughout the state to provide famers with opportunities to further the conservation goals on their farm to protect water quality. We are actively representing members and providing resources on the Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program, Michigan Manure Hauler Certification Program, the 4R Nutrient Stewardship Program, farmer-led watershed groups, Great Lakes Restoration Initiative Programs, and more.
Opposing an Overreaching Large Livestock Permit
Farm Bureau and many partnering stakeholders continue to combat government overreach through a legal challenge of the Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy’s permit for large livestock operations.
Farm Bureau has supported numerous legislative and regulatory initiatives at the state and federal level that have made transportation infrastructure improvements, expanded broadband access, and enhanced the ability to supply affordable, reliable, and secure energy. These efforts continue to improve the state of our rural communities and economy.
During the 2021-22 legislative session, Michigan Farm Bureau opposed nearly 40 bills that never moved out of their respective committees or were ultimately abandoned.
Farm Feed Texting Program
In 2023 more than 1,700 members and supporters sent nearly 7,000 messages to elected officials and regulatory decisionmakers, sharing the organization’s position on important agriculture issues.