(Posted Dec. 15, 2016)
By Kristy Zurbrick, Madison Editor
Fred Yoder, a fourth generation farmer from Plain City, has been named to President-elect Donald Trump’s agricultural advisory committee.
He joins 90-some other agriculture experts from around the country who were named to the committee prior to the Nov. 8 presidential election.
When Trump’s campaign contacted him about the opportunity, Yoder said he “wasn’t particularly crazy about the idea at first.”
“Mr. Trump said some things (during his campaign) that were outrageous and questionable, but I was intrigued because he wanted people who could feed him good information and make sure things are done right. He’s a results-driven, get-the-job-done kind of guy.”
Yoder has lived and farmed near Plain City for over 40 years. He grows corn, soybeans and wheat on 1,500 acres. He also operates a retail farm seed business. A few years ago, he formed Yoder Ag Services and brought his son and daughter in as partners.
Yoder got his start in the policy and politics of agriculture many years ago when a neighbor asked him to finish his term on the Ohio Corn Growers Association board. This position served as a stepping stone to a host of other state and national leadership positions. He served as president of the National Corn Growers Association and chaired its biotech working group, which developed protocols to ensure that new emerging technologies could be used safely on the farm while protecting other existing crop systems.
He currently chairs the North American Climate Smart Agriculture Alliance, which aims to find ways to produce food, fiber, feed and energy more sustainably with an eye on economics and the environment.
Yoder also holds position on boards and advisory councils focused on water quality, supply chain issues, grain marketing, and data sharing for the general improvement of farming operations. He has traveled many times to the European Union to speak about organic and non-organic production systems working side by side.
He is the recipient of many awards in Ohio for his conservation efforts and recently was inducted into the Ohio Agriculture Hall of Fame. He also was named a “Champion of Change” by the White House for his work on climate change in agriculture.
Yoder said he and the other members of Trump’s agricultural advisory committee will tackle a broad range of issues, including waterway regulations, tax laws, the 2018 farm bill, stressed aquifers, immigration and a workable guest worker program, and infrastructure improve-ments.
Regarding his part on the committee, Yoder said, “I feel I can have an impact to help Ohio and the nation’s farmers.”
He said he is excited about what can be accomplished under Trump’s lead.
“There’s a feeling of ‘Let’s see what a business man can do,’ ” he said.