The former governor of Georgia has selected by President Donald J. Trump to be his secretary of agriculture. Sonny Perdue is a former veterinarian who was selected in 2003 to be governor of Georgia. Perdue has discussed his views on agriculture and trade and how he can ensure American producers can become front-runners in international competition. Perdue has spent most of his working career in the grain and fertilizer business and was one of the first candidates President Trump interviewed for the post.
While being governor of Georgia during a record-setting drought in 2007, Perdue set strict water usage restrictions and led hundreds of people in a prayer for rain at the State Capitol. Perdue is praised by President Trumps cabinet members with them agreeing that his experience in agricultural policy and business is key to the position. The Agriculture Agency has a $150 billion budget and oversees farm policies, food safety, food stamps, nutrition programs, and the forest service.
Perdue has a past in fertilizer sales and will look to help chemical companies and large agriculture conglomerates with federal farm subsidies. Perdue has stated that he understands the challenges facing today’s farmers and has said that he considers himself an asset with his past work in ag-business and governmental responsibilities. With Trumps move to withdraw from the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade, there is potential for U.S. farmers’ profits to rise. But small local farmers have questioned the move stating that international tariffs play an important role in the trading equation.
This year there will be a new Farm Bill put in place. It sets the food policy and states how the bill will cover crop insurance, commodity price supports, and labor needs. Perdue will have his hands full in this new world of modern agriculture and farming techniques. Many farmers nation wide are going to be looking to Perdue to be their voice in congress and will need his expertise in the new administration.