Commissioner of Agriculture | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth

Commissioner of Agriculture

The Commissioner of Agriculture is the head of the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, which helps direct activities and provides information for and about farming in Kentucky, one of the state’s largest  industries. The Commissioner is responsible for helping expand agricultural markets, encourage rural economic development and promote Kentucky agricultural products.

Our current Commissioner of Agriculture is Republican Ryan Quarles and he is running for re-electioon.

The Democratic candidate is Robert Haley Conway.

Both candidates responded to our survey. Their answers follow.

Also appearing on the ballot is Libertarian party candidate Josh Gilpin. He did not respond to the survey.

Robert Haley Conway

Political party: Democrat

Campaign website: https://www.conwayforky19.com/

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Question 1:

What is your vision for the role of the Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture? How will our commonwealth be better in four years if you are elected?

Office to become more accessible. Depoliticize the nature of the office. Understand that the needs of the 21st century demand that change is required. Step outside the box. Make family farms profitable again. Since the average farm size is between 100-200 acres in Kentucky, it becomes necessary to maximize the acreage available and become more efficient. We need to look at agriculture in this state in a new way. We need to understand that our natural resources and landforms should dictate the type of agriculture we undertake. We no longer have the safety net that was provided by tobacco. We need to become more diverse, look at alternative ag practices, and embrace change (i.e. nurseries, orchards, hemp to some degree, tree farms, aquiculture).

Ryan F. Quarles

Political party: Republican

Campaign website: https://ryanquarles.com/

Campaign Facebook: Facebook

Campaign Twitter: Twitter

Question 1:

What is your vision for the role of the Kentucky Commissioner of Agriculture? How will our commonwealth be better in four years if you are elected?

As Commissioner, we will continue to promote Kentucky agriculture, expand markets for our family farms, grow KY Proud, support our farmers' markets, continue our growth of industrial hemp, grow ag related jobs & economic development, support conservation efforts, encourage our young people to choose ag as a career, protect against consumer fraud at our gas stations, support ag education & safety programs, expand international trade opportunities and continue to fight hunger across the Commonwealth.  As demonstrated during my first term, Kentucky is better off with increase job growth in the ag sector, $1.8 million was raised for 4-H & FFA, we own the best hemp program in America, and I believe we have provided effective leadership for our farming & agriculture communities.  In four years, I hope our hemp program has matured with market success, our youth programs have flourished, our livestock safety protocols are maintained, and that everyday Kentuckians have access to local, nutritious KY Proud produce.  Finally, the best accomplishment after four years would be whether the KY agriculture community that raised me from birth would be better off, more efficient, open to consumer demands, and that less Kentuckians go to be hungry.