American Farm Bureau Federation

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This article is about the non-profit agricultural organization. For the insurance, fund and annuities financial company, see FBL Financial Group.
American Farm Bureau Federation
Farm-bureau.png
Founder John Barron
Type Agricultural organization
Focus Agriculture
Location
Area served
United States
Method Lobbying
Key people
Bob Stallman, President
Website www.fb.org
Farm Bureau office, Pinckney, Michigan

The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF), commonly referred to as the Farm Bureau, is a nonprofit organization and describes itself as the largest general farm organization in the United States. The stated mission of AFBF is "working through our grassroots organizations to enhance and strengthen the lives of rural Americans and to build strong, prosperous agricultural communities." AFBF is headquartered in Washington, DC. There are 50 state Farm Bureau affiliates and one in Puerto Rico.

History[edit]

The Farm Bureau movement officially started in 1911 when John Barron, a farmer who graduated from Cornell University worked as an extension agent in Broome County, New York. He served as a "Farm Bureau" representative for farmers with the Binghamton, New York Chamber of Commerce. The effort was financed by the United States Department of Agriculture and Lackawanna Railroad. The Broome County Farm Bureau was soon separated from the Chamber of Commerce. Other farm bureaus on a county level formed across the country.

In 1914, with the passage of the Smith–Lever Act of 1914, Congress agreed to share with the states the cost of programs for providing what had come to be called "county agents," who furnished farmers information on improved methods of husbandry developed by the agricultural colleges and agricultural experiment stations. Eventually[when?], this practice ceased to exist after angerTemplate:Whose anger? over government subsidization of agriculture.

Farmers meeting in Saline County, Missouri were the first to form a state-wide Farm Bureau in 1915. The initial Farm Bureus had a social and educational function furthering the extension service efforts, and they have additionally developed a lobbying presence as wel.

The American Farm Bureau was formally created in 1919 in Chicago, Illinois. Its initial organization papers said:

The purpose of Farm Bureau is to make the business of farming more profitable, and the community a better place to live. Farm Bureau should provide an organization in which members may secure the benefits of unified efforts in a way which could never be accomplished through individual effort. - Statement originally approved by Farm Bureau members in 1920.[1]

The American Farm Bureau Federation relocated its headquarters from Park Ridge, Illinois to Washington, D.C. in 2003. Each November since 1986, AFBF has reported the results of an informal survey on the average retail cost of a classic Thanksgiving dinner, including a 16-pound turkey and all the trimmings. In 2012, the reported cost was $49.48.[2]

Insurance[edit]

An organization independent of the Farm Bureau called FBL Financial Group based in West Des Moines, Iowa sells insurance under the brand names of Farm Bureau Financial Services. It also uses the Farm Bureau logo.[3]

Nationwide Mutual Insurance Company began as an insurance company for members of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation. It continues to serve as an insurance provider to Farm Bureaus in 9 states.[4] Other insurance companies tied to Farm Bureaus include Farm Family Insurance, which serves as an insurance provider to Farm Bureaus in 5 states, and Country Financial, serving clients in 17 states.

The Farm Bureau and its state affiliates also own American Agricultural Insurance Company, a reinsurer, and American Farm Bureau Insurance Services, a crop insurer.

Climate change[edit]

The Farm Bureau does not share the scientific opinion on climate change, with its official position being that "there is no generally agreed upon scientific assessment of the exact impact or extent of carbon emissions from human activities, their impact on past decades of warming or how they will affect future climate changes." The climate change session at its 2010 national meeting was entitled "Global Warming: A Red Hot Lie?" and featured climate change skeptic Christopher C. Horner,[5] a lawyer for the libertarian Competitive Enterprise Institute, a largely industry-backed group that strongly opposes limits on greenhouse gases.[6]

The Bureau is also opposed to climate change legislation, including the cap and trade measures under consideration in the U.S. Congress, arguing that such measures would increase fuel and fertilizer prices for farmers. At its 2010 national meeting, delegates unanimously approved a resolution that "strongly supports any legislative action that would suspend EPA's authority to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act."[7]

The Union of Concerned Scientists sent a letter to the group just prior to its meeting pointing out that its climate change position runs counter to that of every major scientific organization and urged it to support action on climate on change. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has stated that farmers have more to gain from cap and trade than they stand to lose.[7]

Lobbying efforts[edit]

According to a 2012 article in The Nation, the AFBF retains twenty-two registered lobbyists. In 2012, AFBF was the top contributor to federal candidates, parties, and outside groups with payments of over one million dollars; 62% to Republicans. Over the past decade, the AFBF spent $16 million, or 45 percent of the total spent by all of the nation’s ten largest agribusiness interests.[8]

AFBF supported the Fighting Hunger Incentive Act of 2014 (H.R. 4719; 113th Congress), a bill that would amend the Internal Revenue Code to permanently extend and expand certain expired provisions that provided an enhanced tax deduction for businesses that donated their food inventory to charitable organizations.[9] AFBF argued that without the tax write-off, "it is cheaper in most cases for these types of businesses to throw their food away than it is to donate the food."[10]

Personnel[edit]

  • Bob Stallman, President

List of Farm Bureaus[edit]

Bureau Headquarters Founded Insurance Website
Alabama Farmers Federation Montgomery, Alabama 1921 Alfa Insurance www.alfafarmers.org
Alaska Farm Bureau akfb.fb.org
Arizona Farm Bureau Gilbert, Arizona FBL Financial Group azfb.org
Arkansas Farm Bureau Federation Little Rock, Arkansas 1935 Southern Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.arfb.com
California Farm Bureau Federation Sacramento, California 1919 Allied/Nationwide www.cfbf.com
Colorado Farm Bureau Centennial, Colorado 1919 Southern Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.coloradofarmbureau.com
Connecticut Farm Bureau Windsor, Connecticut 1919 Nationwide www.cfba.org
Delaware Farm Bureau Camden, Delaware Nationwide defb.org
Florida Farm Bureau Gainesville, Florida 1941 Southern Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.floridafarmbureau.org
Georgia Farm Bureau Federation Macon, Georgia 1937 Georgia Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.gfb.org
Hawaii Farm Bureau Federation Honolulu, Hawaii 1948 www.hfbf.org
Idaho Farm Bureau Federation Boise, Idaho 1939 Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company of Idaho www.idahofb.org
Illinois Farm Bureau Bloomington, Illinois 1916 Country Financial www.ilfb.org
Indiana Farm Bureau Indianapolis, Indiana 1919 Indiana Farm Bureau Insurance www.infarmbureau.org
Iowa Farm Bureau West Des Moines, Iowa 1918 FBL Financial Group www.iowafarmbureau.com
Kansas Farm Bureau Manhattan, Kansas 1919 FBL Financial Group www.kfb.org
Kentucky Farm Bureau Louisville, Kentucky 1919 Kentucky Farm Bureau Insurance
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.kyfb.com
Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation Baton Rouge, Louisiana 1922 Southern Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.lfbf.org
Maine Farm Bureau Augusta, Maine 1951 Farm Family www.mainefarmbureau.com
Maryland Farm Bureau Randallstown, Maryland 1915 Nationwide www.mdfarmbureau.com
Massachusetts Farm Bureau Federation Marlborough, Massachusetts Farm Family www.massfarmbureau.com
Michigan Farm Bureau Lansing, Michigan 1919 Farm Bureau Insurance of Michigan www.michfb.com
Minnesota Farm Bureau St. Paul, Minnesota 1919 FBL Financial Group www.fbmn.org
Mississippi Farm Bureau Federation Jackson, Mississippi 1922 Southern Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.msfb.org
Missouri Farm Bureau Jefferson City, Missouri 1915 Missouri Farm Bureau Insurance www.mofb.org
Montana Farm Bureau Federation Bozeman, Montana 1919 Mountain West Farm Bureau Insurance
FBL Financial Group
mfbf.org
Nebraska Farm Bureau Lincoln, Nebraska FBL Financial Group www.nefb.org
Nevada Farm Bureau Sparks, Nevada Country Financial nvfb.org
New Hampshire Farm Bureau Federation Concord, New Hampshire Farm Family www.nhfarmbureau.org
New Jersey Farm Bureau Trenton, New Jersey Farm Family www.njfb.org
New Mexico Farm & Livestock Bureau Las Cruces, New Mexico FBL Financial Group www.nmfarmbureau.org
New York Farm Bureau Albany, New York 1911 Nationwide www.nyfb.org
North Carolina Farm Bureau Raleigh, North Carolina 1936 North Carolina Farm Bureau Insurance Group
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.ncfb.org
North Dakota Fargo, North Dakota 1942 Nordak Mutual Insurance Company www.ndfb.org
Ohio Farm Bureau Columbus, Ohio 1919 Nationwide ofbf.org
Oklahoma Farm Bureau Oklahoma City, Oklahoma 1942 Oklahoma Farm Bureau Insurance www.okfarmbureau.org
Oregon Farm Bureau Salem, Oregon 1932 Country Financial www.oregonfb.org
Pennsylvania Farm Bureau Camp Hill, Pennsylvania Nationwide www.pfb.com
Puerto Rico Farm Bureau San Juan, Puerto Rico prfb.fb.org
Rhode Island Farm Bureau Johnston, Rhode Island Farm Family rifb.org
South Carolina Farm Bureau Cayce, South Carolina 1944 Southern Farm Bureau Casualty Insurance Company
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.scfb.org
South Dakota Farm Bureau Huron, South Dakota 1917 FBL Financial Group www.sdfbf.org
Tennessee Farm Bureau Columbia, Tennessee 1921 Tennessee Farmers Insurance Companies www.tnfarmbureau.org
Texas Farm Bureau Waco, Texas 1933 Texas Farm Bureau Insurance
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.texasfarmbureau.org
Utah Farm Bureau Sandy, Utah 1916 FBL Financial Group utfb.fb.org
Vermont Farm Bureau Richmond, Vermont 1915 Nationwide www.vtfb.org
Virginia Farm Bureau Goochland County, Virginia
(Richmond mailing address)
Virginia Farm Bureau Insurance
Southern Farm Bureau Life Insurance Company
www.vafarmbureau.org
Washington State Farm Bureau Lacey, Washington 1920 Country Financial www.wsfb.com
West Virginia Farm Bureau Buckhannon, West Virginia 1919 Nationwide www.wvfarm.org
Wisconsin Farm Bureau Federation Madison, Wisconsin Rural Mutual Insurance
FBL Financial Group
wfbf.com
Wyoming Farm Bureau Federation Laramie, Wyoming 1920 Mountain West Farm Bureau Insurance
FBL Financial Group
www.wyfb.org

See also[edit]

1935 FDR remarks for the American Farm Bureau Federation on agriculture during the Great Depression

References[edit]

  1. ^ We are Farm Bureau, American Farm Bureau Federation, retrieved December 9, 2011.
  2. ^ of Classic Thanksgiving Dinner Up Slightly This Year, American Farm Bureau Federation, November 10, 2011.
  3. ^ FBL Financial Group financials, Google Finance, retrieved December 9, 2011.
  4. ^ New York Farm Bureau and Nationwide Insurance announce Strategic Partnership
  5. ^ Winter, Allison (12 January 2010). "Farm Bureau Fires Back Against Climate Bill's 'Power Grab'". New York Times. Retrieved 13 January 2010. 
  6. ^ Template:Http://www.nytimes.com/2007/11/13/science/earth/13book.html? r=0
  7. ^ a b Winter, Allison (2010-01-13). "Farm Bureau wants Congress to stop EPA on greenhouse gases". Energy and Environment News. Retrieved 13 January 2010. 
  8. ^ Whose Side Is the American Farm Bureau On? | The Nation
  9. ^ "CBO - H.R. 4719". Congressional Budget Office. Retrieved 15 July 2014. 
  10. ^ "Fighting Hunger Incentive Act will increase food bank donations". Farm Bureau News. 10 June 2014. Retrieved 16 July 2014. 

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]