Governor's Conference previews Ag Week

Published: Mar. 14, 2017 at 9:43 PM CDT
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It's the number one industry in Nebraska..

"Not only do you depend on Nebraska agriculture when you go to the grocery store but there's a good chance- because one in four jobs in Nebraska is related to agriculture- that your husband, your wife, your children, your parents: They may have a job that's dependent on agriculture," said Greg Ibach, director of the Nebraska Department of Agriculture.

"Lately, there's been a big slip in our economy in Nebraska- we're seeing that with a huge deficit with our budget," added Leslie Boswell, a local farmer. "And, it's directly related to ag because our ag is in a big slump right now."

At this week's Governor's Ag Conference in Kearney, producers, farmers ranchers and many others are learning about how they can enhance the industry.

"Our budget is severely impacted because of it because of the lower commodity prices which means we're not going to go buy a new car, even though we could really use one," Boswell said.

Boswell is part of a group of farm women called Common Ground, which likes to connect with consumers to talk about how their food from the supermarket is raised, the importance of GMOs, among other topics.

And despite a tough year for producers, there's still plenty of optimism in agriculture.

Nebraska is the fourth-largest ag-producing state in the nation and 38th in population, which is why exports are a hot topic.

"You, know, if we look out to the challenge ahead with world population growing to almost 10 billion people by 2050, and the anticipation that we're going to have to produce almost twice as much food to meet the demand of the growing populations- there's a lot of optimism out there," Ibach said.

See the full list of events