MARLBOROUGH, MASSACHUSETTS – Oct. 15, 2020 – This year, the 12 counties that make up Massachusetts Farm Bureau Federation (MFBF) met virtually to elect their officers and establish legislative priorities for 2021 and beyond. Typically, these meetings are held in person, during which members bring forth their concerns to develop Farm Bureau’s policy. However, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, this year, most of the counties held their meetings virtually.
“This grassroots resolution process makes Farm Bureau unique and it is critical, we continue this process even this year,” said MFBF President Mark Amato. “Legislators respect our organization’s policy as it comes from our farmer members who bring up a concern and provide the staff and board guidance on policy. There is no board making decisions for farmers behind closed doors. The process all starts with one farmer.”
During the 12 county Farm Bureau annual meetings, farmers bring their concerns forward for discussion and approval by other county members. If a resolution is adopted at a County Farm Bureau annual meeting, it is then forwarded onto the statewide annual meeting. The resolution is then discussed and voted upon by delegate farmer members. This year’s meeting is set to be held on Dec. 4 virtually.
This policy development process can continue onto the national level. If an approved resolution has national implications, MFBF will forward it along to American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) for discussion and approval at their annual meeting. This means a farmer member can make a difference at the national level.
“The process all starts at local county Farm Bureau annual meetings,” Amato said. “While this year the annual meetings look a little different, our counties are still determined to host these meetings and let the members have their voices heard.”