Midwest Ohio farmland

The agriculture sector continues to face a volatile economy, particularly with continued uncertainty around the price and availability of inputs for the 2024 growing season. Consumers continue to pay higher prices for food while margins for agricultural producers remain tight. Meanwhile, development pressures from many different sources threaten the availability of farmland and the Buckeye State’s rich farming heritage.

The 2024 Ohio Agriculture and Rural Communities Action plan provides a blueprint for policymakers and Ohio Farm Bureau members to bolster Ohio’s agriculture industry and our rural communities.

2024 Priority Issues

Promote a strong business climate

Farm Bureau will:

  • Engage with the U.S. Congress and the Ohio General Assembly on a tax landscape that encourages a strong farm economy.
  • Promote enactment of legislation that helps farmers meet their labor needs.
  • Support initiatives and implementation efforts that bring proper infrastructure, affordable broadband and high-speed internet access to unserved and underserved parts of the state.
  • Secure resources to rebuild, repair or modernize transportation infrastructure, including rural roads and bridges, ports, and inland waterway locks and dams.
  • Support the development of businesses that produce value-added products from locally grown agricultural commodities.
  • Promote policies and programs to increase meat and poultry processing capacity in Ohio to make the food system more resilient for farmers and consumers.

Create a responsible regulatory environment

Farm Bureau will:

  • Continue to work for a regulatory environment that enables farmers to be productive as well as environmentally and economically sustainable.
  • Continue to be the voice for agriculture by ensuring discussions involving water quality are objective and specifically target improving Ohio’s water quality.
  • Promote the H2Ohio program that supports voluntary practices that improve Ohio’s water quality and conservation.
  • Encourage a transparent and open process when reviewing regulations on essential agricultural technologies.
  • Promote agriculturally sourced biofuels that provide savings to both the farmer and the consumer.

Preserve Ohio’s farming heritage

Farm Bureau will:

  • Encourage smart growth policies that simultaneously allow for economic development opportunities to promote efficient land use while preserving farmland.
  • Lead efforts for additional landowner protections, including eminent domain reform, streamlined judicial procedures and agricultural easement program enforcement.
  • Seek stronger requirements for local government use of private land for projects that impact agricultural land, such as rails-to-trails projects.
  • Continue to engage in ballot initiatives, judicial challenges and nuisance lawsuits so farmers can freely and responsibly operate their farms for generations to come.
  • Work to protect risk management tools via the passage of a new multi-year Farm Bill to help create more predictability and better facilitate long-term planning.

Build healthy rural communities

Farm Bureau will:

  • Support the expansion of telehealth into rural communities to provide for critical health care needs, including access to behavioral health care.
  • Strive to increase the accessibility of health care services currently lacking in rural areas.
  • Focus on grassroots initiatives that engage a wide range of stakeholders to offer prevention strategies for men, women, and youth at risk in agriculture.

Engage in grassroots advocacy and increase engagement

Farm Bureau will:

  • Work with members to create opportunities for political education and engagement during the 2024 election cycle, including but not limited to open seat screenings, designating Friends of Agriculture, candidate education and recruitment and Ag Day at the Capital.
  • Mobilize extensive grassroots networks to shape public policy at all levels of government.
  • Utilize communication and advocacy resources to empower members when speaking with policymakers.
Labor has always been an issue, mainly because we are a seasonal operation. So that's a challenge finding somebody who only wants to work three months out of a year, sometimes up to six months.
Mandy Way's avatar
Mandy Way

Way Farms

Farm Labor Resources
I appreciate the benefit of having a strong voice in my corner. The extras that are included in membership are wonderful, but I'm a member because of the positive impact to my local and state agricultural communities.
Ernie Welch's avatar
Ernie Welch

Van Wert County Farm Bureau

Strong communities
I see the value and need to be engaged in the community I live in, to be a part of the decision-making process and to volunteer with organizations that help make our community better.
Matt Aultman's avatar
Matt Aultman

Darke County Farm Bureau

Leadership development
Farm Bureau involvement has taught me how to grow my professional and leadership experience outside of the workforce and how to do that in a community-centric way.
Jaclyn De Candio's avatar
Jaclyn De Candio

Clark County Farm Bureau

Young Ag Professionals program
With not growing up on a farm, I’d say I was a late bloomer to agriculture. I feel so fortunate that I found the agriculture industry. There are so many opportunities for growth.
Jenna Gregorich's avatar
Jenna Gregorich

Coshocton County Farm Bureau

Growing our Generation
Knowing that horticulture is under the agriculture umbrella and having Farm Bureau supporting horticulture like it does the rest of ag is very important.
Jared Hughes's avatar
Jared Hughes

Groovy Plants Ranch

Groovy Plants Ranch
If it wasn't for Farm Bureau, I personally, along with many others, would not have had the opportunity to meet with our representatives face to face in Washington.
Austin Heil's avatar
Austin Heil

Hardin County Farm Bureau

Washington, D.C. Leadership Experience
So many of the issues that OFBF and its members are advocating for are important to all Ohioans. I look at OFBF as an agricultural watchdog advocating for farmers and rural communities across Ohio.
Mary Smallsreed's avatar
Mary Smallsreed

Trumbull County Farm Bureau

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