Word of the Day

O ne word stood out during John Snyder’s presidential address prior to the close of the 2015 American Sugarbeet Growers Association annual meeting: Action. “Annual meetings are a time of...


One word stood out during John Snyder’s presidential address prior to the close of the 2015 American Sugarbeet Growers Association annual meeting: Action.  "Annual meetings are a time of reflection and planning," the Wyoming grower and ASGA president noted. "How do we see ourselves, and how do others perceive us? What is our reputation? What is our mission? "After reflecting on those questions, it boils down to one word: ‘ACTION.’ Without action, nothing gets done. But as farmers, ‘ACTION’ best describes who we are. We get lots of things done, both individually and collectively. The world needs us." Here’s how Snyder broke down this word from his ASGA perspective, letter by letter:

•; A = Attitude and Accountability — "We must face every challenge and opportunity with a strong and positive attitude, which is the well of positive energy we must draw from when we face obstacles. As leaders and members of a great commodity organization, we are accountable to ourselves, our families, to each other as members of cooperatives, our communities — and the food security of our nation." •; C = Competence, Confidence and Communication — "We have to be smart to navigate the many environments that we work in. We work hard to understand all of the complexities of international trade agreements. We are committed to learning every day. If we are competent, we will have the confidence to lead and influence. As leaders, we must be able to communicate with and educate others so they, in turn, will take the action that is needed to solve our problems." •; T = Tenacious — "The sugar world is not for the faint of heart. If you are going to work in this arena, you have to be rock solid at local, state, national and international levels. You have to work through, go over, around or under whatever obstacle that may get in your way, blazing new trails where others are either unwilling or unable to go. You have to think out of the box, take calculated risks, block out fear of failure and avoid the trap of ‘paralysis by analysis.’ " •; I = I, You and I Individually — "Not someone else. I need to raise my hand to help, speak up when needed, and lend a helping hand to others who lead. As they say, ‘If it’s going to be, it’s up to me.’ My life and my voice will make a difference in the future of this industry. The best example of this is Laura Rutherford, who has stepped up to help this industry, tell our message to the world and inspire others to join her in educating those who are confused or misinformed about biotechnology." •; O = Own It — "Whatever the issue is, we need to own it, manage it and take care of it. For decades, our growers and processors were not always on the same page — until we bought our companies. As owners, we do things differently because we find incentives that make us, and keep us, world-class producers. Likewise, we own our trade policy, sugar policy, risk management tools and biotechnology issues, which we must manage and care for." •; N = Never Give Up, Not Now, Not Later — "It is why the U.S. sugar industry is where it is today: because we never give up. It’s countless legal conference calls with the top people in the beet and cane industries, working on solutions. It’s sitting eyeball-to-eyeball with the negotiators at [the Department of] Commerce to communicate the concerns and burdens of every beet grower in the nation." Prior to adjournment, Snyder encouraged his fellow ASGA members to remain proud of who they are and what they represent. "Remember, this industry does not beg for a handout from the American taxpayers; but we do demand a level playing field against global competition that is entrenched in subsidies and dumping," he stated. "At our core, that is our mission and our message.  "I am both excited about the future of this industry," Snyder concluded, "and am committed to make it better and stronger for us today — and for our sons and daughters in the years ahead."

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