Farmers and ranchers don’t shy away from hard work. When there’s a storm coming, we band together to bring the crops in. When our neighbors need a hand rebuilding, we pack our tools in our trucks and head right over. But even in the best of seasons, there’s not an easy day on the farm. We put in long hours, and invest our blood, sweat and tears to keep on in the noble profession of farming. And when there’s a call to grassroots advocacy, Farm Bureau members don’t shy away from that challenge either. You step up and answer the call, and that’s exactly what we saw last week with our resounding grassroots’ message to Congress to deliver a new farm bill.

Farm Bureau asked members to step up to the plate and advocate for this issue, and you did just that. Farm Bureau members from across the country sent more than 11,000 messages to senators and representatives asking them to get the farm bill done. These messages poured in from nearly every state. From California to Florida to Texas to Minnesota, you made your voices heard.

As farmers know firsthand, the farm bill is essential in keeping our food supply secure. It ensures funding for risk management tools that help family farms hold on through severe weather and volatile markets. But that’s not all. Because of its broad impact, the farm bill could really be called a food and farm bill. This critical legislation funds not only risk management tools but also provides access to nutrition for low-income families, funds conservation programs, and invests in agricultural research. The farm bill is a major investment for our nation, as it should be, because the farm bill matters for all Americans.

Even though Congress passed an extension of the 2018 farm bill, getting a new farm bill done is still a priority for us. Farmers and ranchers need a modernized farm bill that reflects the changes our industry has gone through in the last five years. It’s time for our lawmakers to step up to pass a farm bill soon. The reality is that the closer we get to the 2024 elections, the less likely it will be for Congress to achieve this goal.

The farm bill is too important to be kicked down the road. This legislation has been a shining example of bipartisanship in the past. Traditionally, the farm bill has given an opportunity for both sides to put aside their differences to work for the common good of the nation. And they can do it again. Will it be challenging? Hard work? Yes. But every family in America is counting on them to deliver.

The best thing you can do is continue to reach out to your elected officials and tell them how important the farm bill is to your farm. You can share your story about how the farm bill has helped you, and what you would like to see written in the new farm bill. And if you’re not already a Farm Bureau member, we encourage you to join us by going to your local, county Farm Bureau and getting involved. Let’s urge Congress to follow the example of the dedicated farmers and ranchers across this country. Don’t shy away from the hard work. Deliver a new, modernized farm bill for America’s families this year.