Source: Growmark via

The challenge to American agriculture to produce more food, fuel, and fiber on decreasing acreage won't be made any easier by governmental regulatory bodies, according to Gary Baise, agricultural lawyer with Olsson, Frank, Weeda, Terman, Bode and Matz law firm in Washington, D.C.

"Don't think they (the EPA) can't shut you down," he said while addressing nearly 200 growers at the Pursuit of Maximum Yield seminar recently. "There are policies in place and in the works that will restrict food production in the United States."

Water issues are at the top of the EPA's priority list. Although Baise agrees clean water is essential and farmers must do all they can to protect the water around their farms, some regulations are based on incomplete data and are overly restricting.

"For example, the Chesapeake Bay Initiative is one I'm watching very closely," Baise said. "The EPA has stated that 50 percent of the acreage in the six Chesapeake states is still moldboard plowed  — however, USDA data says that 88 percent of that same acreage is not."
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