Robert Carlson, the president of the North Dakota Farmers Union, has been elected the leader of a new international farm group created to combat food insecurity worldwide. In a conference call earlier this week, Carlson outlined the two major goals of the new World Farmers Organization; promoting profitable farming worldwide, and promoting food security by guaranteeing that nations can either grow or import enough food to feed their people.
The first international assembly of the WFO was recently held in Stellenbosch, South Africa, with representatives from several different nations, including the United States. The organization will be headquartered in Rome, and already has over 50 international agricultural organizations and groups as members.
In addition to broad goals like promoting food security, the WFO will provide a space for international dialogue on farming and agricultural issues. International issues like currency values, environmental regulations, and trade policy will be discussed and, Carlson hopes, overcome through mutual consent and international cooperation.
Other American farming groups, most notably the Farm Bureau, are skeptical of the ability of the WFO to make meaningful change. North Dakota Farm Bureau president Eric Aasmundstad stated that, “There’s so much [agricultural] diversity throughout the world, I can’t imagine that it can really do much.”
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Written by: Justin Ellison / Farm Plus Staff Writer