The Iowa secretary of agriculture race bears close watching by Cooperative Extension agricultural professionals who want to gain a clearer picture of how agricultural policy will play out over the next few years.
“For the food movement, [this race] is the most important this election,” says sustainability advocate and author Michael Pollan, who was quoted by The Atlantic.
In fact, Pollan and other sustainability proponents point to it as a bellwether for the rest of the nation.
Northey, who has received corporate support from Monsanto, Sygenta, DuPont and Wal-Mart, is a major proponent of exporting Iowa ag products.
Thicke, who holds a Ph.D in agronomy and is a vocal sustainability advocate, has written a free, downloadable book on agriculture: A New Vision for Iowa Food and Agriculture. Unlike Northey, Thicke wants to create a food processing infrastructure to ensure that more homegrown food stays in Iowa.
Following is the first segment of a debate between the two candidates held earlier this year.