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Washington state is a wonderful place to farm. 95% of our farms are family owned and managed. Some big, some small and some in the middle. We need them all. But keeping them is far from assured. Save Family Farming is dedicated to preserving a future for our state’s family farmers. As you will see there are many issues threatening the future of farms, some of them local and some state or national. Groups and individuals for various reasons push policies and actions that will harm farmers. Look over the issues facing our local affiliates. Most important, please get involved. Your interest and active involvement will help ensure that local, state and national policies will support rather than harm the future of our family farms.

Save Family Farming supports farmers by bringing public attention to issues that affect the future of our farms.

What’s Upstream – the EPA funded campaign of lies and distortions aimed at passing legislation that would harm farmers by unnecessarily taking productive farmland out of production.

Puget Soundkeeper Alliance – this environmental group has aligned with Oregon attorneys working to impose unnecessary regulations that would destroy most of our family dairy farms. They insist on publishing false information about farmers on their website and have refused to allow their board to talk with farmers to get the story straight. They also pursue lawsuits against farm suppliers and support the highly questionable use of settlement funds to fund anti-farm activism. They joined with Waterkeeper Alliance to get courts to go against clear intention of Congress in requiring farms to report cow gas emissions (burping and farting) to the US Coast Guard and local emergency management officials. Fortunately, a bi-partisan effort of Congress saw this as pure anti-farm activism and stopped it with the 2018 Omnibus Bill.

Protect Farmworkers Now – we are working to protect great paying jobs for farmworkers including guest workers, by countering the false accusations against farmers by anti-guest worker activists. Promoting unions, these activists falsely accuse farmers of mistreatment of workers and contribute to the accelerating increase in imported food as our farms lose out to lower cost competition.

EPA’s Falsified Science Study – in 2012 the EPA published a “science” study purporting to show that dairy farms in the Yakima Valley were contaminating groundwater. Since then, this report has been used by activists and lawyers against our farms, costing us some of our farms and multiple millions in damage. The problem is the many science experts who reviewed the report showed the conclusions are wrong based on the way the EPA conducted the study. It was falsified for the clear purpose of assigning blame.

Pesticide bill – this session saw an ill-advised pesticide bill. Workers, consumers and the community are protected by numerous existing laws and regulations so this bill would have added essentially nothing but would have made using necessary crop protection materials impractical and even impossible. It would have greatly harmed our farmers, workers, consumers and communities. Fortunately, legislators listened

Whatcom County is home to about 300 full time family farmers supporting 100,000 acres of farmland. Farmers are providing genuine environmental leadership.

RE Sources’ anti-farm activism – local environmental group aligned with Oregon attorneys is demanding unnecessary and dairy farm-killing regulations.

Over 70% of frozen and processed raspberries and blueberries are grown in Whatcom County, but high labor costs, anti-guest worker activism, and violations of trade laws are causing more imported berries and threatening our farms’ futures.

Eastern Washington is one of the best places to farm as seen by the remarkably varied production in fruit, berries, hops, grapes, and milk.

The EPA’s falsified science report has proven exceptionally harmful as it continues to be used by some news outlets and anti-farm activists against dairy farms.

Nitrates and human health are at the heart of the issues surrounding farming. But activists, reporters and even government officials frequently get the facts wrong about nitrate and health.
Access to work

As the closest major farming area to Seattle, Skagit Valley is at the forefront of efforts to protect farming. Skagit valley is a remarkably productive and inspirational farming area; find out more here.

Water is a critical issue. Not because there is not enough – there is plenty – but because it is a tool to control land use decisions.

Farmers are increasingly concerned about the lack of support from Congressional representatives DelBene and Larsen. Rep. Larsen in particular has repeatedly ignored farmers’ efforts to secure his help on critical issues such as the Puget Sound Nearshore Ecosystem Restoration Program.