Secretary Naig: Governor’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board Charts Course for Future Growth

DES MOINES, Iowa (Feb. 4, 2021) – Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig commended Gov. Reynolds and members of the Economic Recovery Advisory Board on its work to guide the state’s COVID-19 recovery efforts. Secretary Naig led the Economic Recovery Advisory Board’s Agriculture Working Group, along with Nick Bowdish, president and CEO of Elite Octane, and Diane Young, owner and director of technical services at Foundational Analytical Laboratory.

“This past year brought unprecedented challenges that required unprecedented solutions. I want to thank Gov. Reynolds for her leadership and continued support of the Iowa agriculture community throughout the pandemic. Despite the economic setbacks caused by COVID-19, our state is in a stronger position than many others because of responsible fiscal management.

I am grateful for the input provided by the work groups and am optimistic that their recommendations will help guide our state towards a brighter future. Ensuring that all Iowans have access to high-quality, affordable childcare and housing, and a reliable, high-speed internet connection is essential to attracting and retaining businesses, qualified workers and tax revenue in our rural communities.

It was my privilege to lead the Agriculture Working Group and collaborate with others in the agriculture community to identify key priorities that will help markets rebound and pave the way for future growth.

Together, the Ag Working Group identified strategies that will support a value-added agriculture program to explore new product offerings, production methods and markets for Iowa farmers. We’re committed to spurring growth and demand for higher blends of renewable fuels. The agriculture community will also continue to be leaders in the state’s ongoing efforts to improve water quality, environmental stewardship and sustainability.

I look forward to working alongside the Governor, Legislature, Economic Recovery Advisory Board, the Agricultural Working Group, and Iowa’s business and community leaders as we continue to create paths towards recovery and growth. I know that the Iowa agriculture community will continue to be at the heart of our state’s economic success.”

Iowa’s agriculture community contributes nearly $40 billion to the state’s economy and accounts for 20 percent of Iowa's jobs.

The Agriculture Working Group engaged in conversations with 165 agriculture leaders from across the state to gather input that helped inform the recommendations submitted to the Economic Recovery Advisory Board. The Agriculture Working Group presented proposals that invest in value-added agriculture opportunities and boost environmental and economic sustainability initiatives.

The full Economic Recovery Advisory Board report, including the Agriculture Working Group recommendations, is available here.

About the Governor’s Economic Recovery Advisory Board

Gov. Reynolds issued an Executive Order that formed the Economic Recovery Advisory Board in June 2020. The Governor charged the Board with “assessing the economic impact of COVID-19 on Iowa’s industries, businesses and workforce, analyzing recovery efforts, and recommending strategies that ensure the future prosperity of our state for all Iowans.” The Board’s working groups focused on agriculture, connectivity, economic growth, education, government, public health and healthcare and the workforce.

###

About the Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship

Led by Secretary Mike Naig, the Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship serves the rural and urban residents that call Iowa home. Through its 12 diverse bureaus, the Department ensures animal health, food safety and consumer protection. It also promotes conservation efforts to preserve our land for the next generation. Learn more at iowaagriculture.gov.

Media Contact:
Keely Coppess
Communications Director
(515) 326-1616           
Keely.Coppess@IowaAgriculture.gov