Labor, Dairy & Trade Top Agriculture Concerns


Top Agriculture Concerns:

Labor, Dairy, Trade, Ball Says

Labor, dairy and trade are his biggest concerns, Richard Ball, state Ag & Markets commissioner, told The Farmers’ Museum sixth annual Celebration of Our Agricultural Community this morning in the Louis C. Jones Center.  “In the old days, farmers only had to think about their cows and their towns,” said Ball.  “Now, they have to consider the value of our currency, what is China doing, what is happening in Washington, or if New Zealand had a good year. Trade effects our local farmers now more than ever.” He urged farmers to make themselves and their concerns known to their legislators, because representation of farmers has been on the decline. “They need to know who you are and that you are involved in agriculture.”  Keynote speaker Dr. Jason Evans, inset right,  SUNY Cobleskill, described farmers’ adoption of new technologies: “When industry is worried about not having enough labor, they mechanize. Agriculture adapts faster than any other area to advancing technology. We need to get properly scaled technological advancements to our small and medium farms.” (Ian Austin/

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