Washington, DC—The National Council of Farmer Cooperatives (NCFC) today congratulated Senator John Thune of South Dakota on the occasion of his becoming a co-chair of the Congressional Farmer Cooperative Caucus.
“During his service to the people of South Dakota, Senator Thune has been a staunch supporter of American agricultural cooperatives and the millions of farmers and ranchers who own them,” said Charles F. Conner, NCFC’s president and CEO. “By becoming co-chair of the Caucus, the Senator continues his strong record of leadership on a range of issues impacting farmers and ranchers in South Dakota and around the country.”
In addition, Senator Thune serves on the Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry.
The Caucus, established in 2002, is a bi-partisan, bi-cameral organization with the goals of promoting greater awareness and understanding of farmer cooperatives and their importance to agricultural producers and of providing timely analysis of how economic trends, proposed legislation and pending regulations will impact farmer co-ops and their member-owners.
The other co-chairs of the Congressional Farmer Cooperative Caucus are Blanche Lambert Lincoln (D-Ark.) in the Senate and Earl Pomeroy (D-N.D.) and Sam Graves (R-Mo.) in the House.
“NCFC looks forward to working with Senators Thune and Lincoln, Representatives Pomeroy and Graves, and the rest of the Farmer Co-op Caucus in the 111th Congress,” continued Conner. “Agricultural cooperatives and their producer-owners help to create an economically and socially vibrant rural America. These unique, farmer-controlled businesses offer individual farmers and ranchers the ability to compete effectively in the global economy and maximize farm income from the marketplace.”
NCFC is a national association representing America’s farmer cooperatives. There are nearly 3,000 farmer cooperatives across the U.S. whose members include a majority of our nation’s more than 2 million farmers, ranchers and growers. These farmer cooperative businesses handle, process, and market agricultural commodities and related products; furnish farm supplies; and provide credit and associated financial services. Earnings from these activities are returned to their members on a patronage basis. Farmer cooperatives also provide jobs for nearly 250,000 Americans, many in rural areas, with a combined payroll of over $8 billion.
Additional information about NCFC can be found at http://www.ncfc.org.