In March 2014, Farmers Feeding the World launched its Farm Team initiative to coincide with National Ag Day in Washington D.C. Farm Team is a new program that brings the voices of American farmers to the table on policies related to U.S. international leadership in food security and agricultural development.
To kick off this new effort, Farm Team brought in lead farmers from Indiana, Minnesota and South Dakota who volunteered their time to advocate in support of global hunger fighting initiatives.
Farm Team Lead Farmers
- Joe Caffee is the lead farmer representing Indiana. He hails from Berne, Indiana and raises cattle, hogs, chickens and row crops.
- Ken Huebsch grows corn and kidney beans in New York Mills. He is the lead farmer representing Minnesota.
- Lee Lubbers, the lead farmer representing South Dakota, is a wheat grower from Gregory and the 2014 Top Producer of the Year.
When Joe, Ken and Lee return home, they will channel their training and passion for fighting hunger into forming their own teams of farmer advocates who will continue the conversation with policymakers in their home states and districts.
By 2050, the world population is expected to grow by 2 billion people. Estimates are that global agricultural productivity will need to increase by 70% to feed the world, with most of the demand coming from the least-developed countries.
The U.S. is a historical supporter of international agriculture, lending our expertise and resources to assist farmers in poor countries to thrive. However, there is a risk that policymakers in Washington, D.C., will lose sight of the importance of agriculture to global food security and that investment in the sector in the U.S. and abroad will falter. Currently, the U.S. spends less than 1% of its annual budget on international affairs, including all support for U.S.-led efforts in global agricultural development. By bringing more U.S. farmers into the policy dialogue, Farmers Feeding the World seeks to ensure U.S. leadership in international agriculture does not waiver, while educating the U.S. Congress on the global hunger challenge.
Joe Caffee- Berne, Indiana
Joe Caffee (Middle), and Farmers Feeding the World's Tony Behr (left) during Joe's meeting with Senator Joe Donnelly (Right)
Ken Huebsch following his meeting with U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar