Secretary Vilsack says wants more money to remain in rural areas
Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack told members of the House Ag Committee during a hearing Thursday that he wants to see more money stay in rural communities.
He says one of the biggest challenges facing Rural America is an extraction economy. “We take things from the land and off the land and unfortunately, rather than converting them in value-adding them in close to the rural areas where the natural resource is,” he says. “They are transported long distances where they are value-added in some of the locations where opportunities and jobs are created elsewhere.”
Which, he says, is why the administration is making investments in small and mid-sized processing facilities across the country. “The need for our cattle producers our livestock producers, our hog producers, to have choice and opportunity for a local processing facility, that creates local jobs,” he says. “That allows that revenue and wealth that is created from processing to stay in the community.”
Vilsack says by creating a circular economy, the wealth that is developed in rural communities stays local.