AG/FDA Blog

John Block: NAFTA

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block Today, let’s talk about trade and tax reform. President Trump wants to improve the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), and the Congress is presenting a tax reform package. NAFTA is in the spotlight r… Read More
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John Block: Trade Worries

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block Worries about our ag trade are escalating. Farmers are desperate. We export more than a quarter of what we produce. Farm prices are in the tank. Any wrong move that would cause us to lose markets would be a dev… Read More
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John Block: Ag Issues 2017

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block This week, the U.S. Department of Agriculture posted the announcement of this year’s World Food Prize Foundation laureate.  At one time, he was the Nigerian Minister of Agriculture, and he now runs the Afric… Read More
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John Block: This and That 2017

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block Tip of the day— “Seven percent of all American adults believe that chocolate milk comes from brown cows.”  “One in five adults don’t know that hamburgers are beef.”  We have a major education chal… Read More
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John Block: Branstad and Horses

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block I have two subjects to cover today. One that is very hopeful – Governor Terry Branstad, now Ambassador Terry Branstad, is headed to China. The other issue, which is not very hopeful, has to do with horses. Amb… Read More
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NAFTA Re-Negotiation Objectives: USTR Requests Public Input

The U.S. Trade Representative  (USTR)  is seeking “public comments on matters relevant to the modernization of NAFTA in order to inform development of U.S. negotiating positions.”  This is an opportunity for anyone impacted by U.S. tra… Read More
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John Block: GE Science

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block I am encouraged. I think that we have some pretty strong voices in the Trump Administration speaking out in support of agriculture. Our strongest voice comes from Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. He said a… Read More
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John Block: Perdue’s Agenda

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block It’s only been a week since confirmation, but Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue has hit the ground running.  He has ordered that schools be given more flexibility in their school lunch programs, more local c… Read More
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John Block: How Do We Raise Prices?

By former USDA Secretary John R. Block I can report that I was on my Illinois farm last week.  Weather was beautiful and we planted 360 acres of corn.  Then it rained.  At least we got started.  It is always exciting when you first hit the field… Read More
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John Block: Confirmation Process

This week, I stopped by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and met with Governor Perdue’s Chief of Staff and Policy Advisor, Brian Klippenstein. It was a short visit but we all agreed that we desperately need to get Sonny Perdue confirmed. All of t… Read More
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