Friday, March 1, 2019

Delgado and the Secretary of Agriculture

Gossips gets lots of press releases from Congressman Antonio Delgado's office, which I usually don't share. This one, received this afternoon, is an exception. (The pictures of cows, taken at Columbia County dairy farms, are Gossips' addition.)

After Troubling Response, Rep. Delgado Invites 
Secretary of Agriculture to NY-19 
to Hear Directly from Struggling Farmers
Washington, DC--When Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue was asked by U.S. Representative Antonio Delgado (NY-19) what could be done to help small dairy farmers in Upstate New York, Perdue replied that economics of scale are destined to impose certain harsh consequences on small farmers. He called the challenges facing dairy farmers "intractable." Perdue added that he would not be "compelled to keep anyone in business if it's not profitable."
Watch the full exchange during the February 27 Agriculture Committee hearing here.  
Delgado, feeling that Perdue's response was wholly inadequate, sent a letter today inviting the Secretary to New York's 19th Congressional District to hear directly from farmers whose livelihoods have been jeopardized by low prices, market consolidation, and lack of access to local resources. . . .
In his letter to Perdue, Delgado said, "Priorities dictate policies. And when it comes to your Agency's priorities, I believe a reassessment is necessary. Family-owned farming operations have provided a high quality life not only for rural areas, but for our whole nation, for hundreds of years. If small farms perish, so will a quintessential aspect of American life."
Delgado represents the eighth most rural congressional district in the country. . . .


  1. New York State is known to be one of the most expensive highly regulated states in the nation. This has always been bad for dairy farmers. Big business interests control the pricing in NYS to the detriment of the farmer.

    Further electric costs for the milking machines are some of the highest in the nation.

    Organic farming is a way to make a profit in the industry but it is complicated. however, the prices are not controlled in the same way.

    Columbia County, fortunately, has been a place where organic farming has flourished -- it is close to the largest market in America, and the new form of farming seems to be working.

    Good luck to dealign with big business interests however.

  2. So the lesson here for farmers is to keep voting Republican. That way, people like Purdue can continue to set policy. Makes perfect sense.