A Hamilton County farmer will serve on the board of directors of the National Corn Growers Association.
Brandon Hunnicutt attended the Corn Congress in Washington D.C. last week and heard from the ambassador to Mexico, a nation that buys vast amounts of U.S. corn and dried distillers grains, a byproduct of the ethanol-making process.
“Just realizing the trade partnership we have with Mexico,” Hunnicutt says, “and how important it is for both countries to make sure that at the end of the day that we have something that works for agriculture is of vital importance.”
Hunnicutt says the North American Free Trade Agreement, or NAFTA, has been good for America’s corn growers, and only minor adjustments are needed through the treaty’s renegotiation.
“For agriculture, it’s been a great win,” Hunnicutt says. “With NAFTA, we need to go in there and tweak some things. The references made to NAFTA 2.0. That’s a great way to look at it. Any negotiation, anything you’ve done, after so many years, there’s always things you can go back because things have changed, what can we do to make it better.”
He says fostering strong relationships is the key to a successful trade agreement with Mexico or any other country.
“It seems like so much of this is, whether we’re dealing with congressmen or with trading partners, it’s all about relationships,” Hunnicutt says. “Even in those times when we disagree on some issues, making sure that we keep those lines of communication open is very important.”
Hunnicutt’s term on the National Corn Growers board will start October 1st.
By Jerry Oster, WNAX, Yankton