In “Farmers Understand the Real Value of TPP,” this week’s Focus on Agriculture column, Michele Aavang explains why an “average farmer” might care about trade with other countries. “Export sales make an important contribution to the farm economy,” she points out. Further, about 20 percent of U.S. farm income comes from agricultural exports and demand is increasing overseas for products that are grown on U.S. farms due to the fast-growing economies of many Asia-Pacific countries.

Aavang farms with her family in Woodstock, Illinois, where they grow corn, soybeans, wheat and beef on the same land the family has been farming for 160 years.