Tom Vilsack speaks passionately into a microphone

Photo Credit: Joseph L. Murphy/Iowa Soybean Association

Iowa Soybean Farmers Ready to Engage with Sec. Vilsack Upon Return to USDA

February 23, 2021

Statement on behalf of Iowa Soybean Association President Jeff Jorgenson of Sidney, Iowa

“The U.S. Senate’s approval of Tom Vilsack to lead the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) bodes well for Iowa soybean farmers.”

“The former Iowa governor’s return to USDA gives Iowa farmers and rural communities a strong tie to the nation’s capital and voice in the future of farm policy.

“Serving as a steady and reasoned advocate during the eight years he previously served as Ag Secretary, the former Mt. Pleasant Mayor’s approval comes at an important time for U.S. agriculture and Iowa farmers. Building domestic and international demand for U.S. soy, promoting open, fair and competitive trade, and recognizing the leadership role that Iowa farmers play in improving air and water quality will all be center-of-the-plate.”

“We look forward to engaging USDA on issues that are critical to the long-term success of the soybean industry including:

  • Continuing support for Iowa farmers recovering from lackluster trade, historic weather and climate-related events, and pandemic-induced supply chain disruptions;
  • Exploring and expanding market-based opportunities for Iowa soybean farmers
  • Ensuring the Environmental Protection Agency administers the Renewable Fuel Standard according to congressional intent;
  • Promoting reliable, competitive and cost-effective agriculture infrastructure;
  • Developing and implementing programs to deliver long-term funding for farmer-led conservation efforts that enhance soil health and water quality producing ecosystem outcomes, and;
  • Improving Iowa’s competitive advantage by deploying broadband access in rural communities.
“We anticipate Vilsack will couple his deep understanding of the issues facing modern agriculture and a unique knowledge of USDA’s broad responsibilities to the benefit of Iowa soybean farmers.”
The Iowa Soybean Association ( is “Driven To Deliver” increased soybean demand through market development and new uses, farmer-focused research and results, timely information and know-how and policy initiatives enabling farmers and the industry to flourish. Founded in 1964 by farmers to serve farmers, ISA is governed by a board of 22 farmers to advocate on behalf of the state’s 40,000 soybean producers, including more than 15,000 ISA farmer members and industry stakeholders.