The Discussion Meet is a free-wheeling discussion of ag topics, as if you are sitting around the table discussing a problem. The Discussion Meet helps you build communication skills, develop an understanding of important ag issues and explore how to pool knowledge to solve problems. Successful participants are productive thinkers rather than emotional persuaders, help the group create ways to implement the solutions discussed, and highlight Farm Bureau’s involvement in those actions
Two of the following questions will be selected for the preliminary rounds of the 2019 Discussion Meet:
1. Trade is vital to Iowa farmers as it opens markets for commodities. Farm Bureau policy supports expanding existing markets and opening new markets. Iowa farmers understand that trade is essential, but how can they help the general public understand why it’s important that the US engage in trade with foreign countries?
2. Supporting rural communities is a priority for Farm Bureau members. What can Farm Bureau do to support the long-term viability of rural communities? What role can young farmers play?
3. With the current low profit margins in traditional farming operations and limited access of land, many young farmers are looking to diversify with other crops, livestock markets, and value-added opportunities. What role can Farm Bureau play in helping young farmers accomplish their goal of generating additional income on the farming operation through niche markets and value-added agricultural?
Contestants are judged on cooperative attitude, problem solving, delivery, problem analysis and opening and closing statements. Based on cumulative ranking, the top eight finalists (and two alternates) will be determined.
Finalists receive coaching throughout the year to prepare for the final rounds, held during the Iowa Farm Bureau Annual Meeting in December 2019. Questions for the final rounds will be selected from the five questions provided by AFBF.
Prizes are awarded to four state finalists. The winner receives a one-year/ 100 hour lease on a new Cat Skid Steer Loader (values at $10,000) and will advance to the AFBF Discussion Meet in January, 2020 in Austin, TX.
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