Iowa Corn Farmers Take Priorities to Corn Congress

JOHNSTON, Iowa – July 20, 2023 – Iowa Corn Growers Association® (ICGA) farmer-leaders attended the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) Corn Congress meetings this week to advocate for key agricultural issues and priorities.

During Corn Congress, Iowa farmer-leaders met with each member of the Iowa Congressional Delegation’s office including Senators Ernst and Grassley and Representatives Feenstra, Hinson, Miller-Meeks and Nunn. In addition to the Iowa offices, farmers met with 100 other congressional offices from across the country who do not have an established corn grower organization they can connect with to share how corn and ethanol impact their state and our country.

While at their visits Iowa corn farmers expressed the need for a solution to the biotech corn dispute with Mexico, promoted the need for a comprehensive Farm Bill this year and shared the value corn brings economically to our country through ethanol and the opportunity the Next Generation Fuels Act would provide.

“Advocating for sound policy is a key benefit to being a member of the Iowa Corn Growers Association. While a great deal of communication is done back in Iowa, it’s also beneficial to meet with legislators in their offices,” said ICGA President Denny Friest, a farmer from Radcliffe, Iowa. “During our time at Corn Congress in D.C. we not only meet with our Iowa legislators to discuss federal policy priorities like the Next Generations Fuels Act and Farm Bill, but also with staff and legislators from offices across the country that may not have the connection to farmers like Iowa does – allowing us to really make a large impact while in the nation’s capital.”

NCGA delegates also elected Iowa farmer Kelly Nieuwenhuis from O’Brien County to the NCGA Board for a three-year term. Nieuwenhuis will join the Corn Board alongside Director Bob Hemesath from Decorah, Iowa.

“It’s an honor to be elected to serve on the NCGA Corn Board as I am looking forward to working for Iowa’s corn growers and the nation’s corn growers to promote the use of ethanol as the most sustainable fuel we have here and now and to maintain and expand markets for corn in all forms,” said Nieuwenhuis.

Additionally, Jolene Riessen, a farmer from Ida County, was recognized as one of three recipients of the inaugural Corn Advocate of the Year award. This is a tremendous honor and shows her dedication to fighting for Iowa’s corn farmers.