Farmers Daughter Blog: Communicating the story of agriculture
Growing up a farmer’s daughter I developed a passion for agriculture; and it was no surprise that when I graduated I wanted to pursue a career in the agricultural industry.
To my surprise, when I announced that I would be majoring in Agricultural Communications at South Dakota State University a lot of people have never heard of my major. So, when I was asked about my major the running joke involved the line “No actually, I am not going to school to learn how talk to cows..." Now don’t get me wrong, I would love to be able to communicate with cattle, I think that would be great! It would be like having my own super power.
In reality I don’t have any special talents, but I do have a pretty cool major. Agricultural Communications is apretty neat aspect of the agricultural industry that focuses on communicating, educating, and marketing. Being able to communicate how food, fiber, and lumber is produced is so important.
However, the real heroes are those hard-working men and women who are out there 365 days of the year making sure that we have food on our tables and clothes on our backs. I am so proud to be called a farmer’s daughter. Farmers and ranchers work with love through harvest and calving, through floods and droughts, though blizzards and wildfires, and through low prices and misconceptions. A steadfast passion holds up though all the ups and downs because at the end of the day we wouldn't have it any other way.
I love being able to tell my family’s story, so I wanted to share a few different ways that both farmers and consumers can help share the story of agriculture.
The first thing you can do is to utilize technology. Agriculture and innovation go hand in hand. Agriculturists have robotic milking in dairies, GPS & auto-steer tractors in fields, GMO crops, and even drones for crop scouting. Farmers: know what you are doing right on your operation and what you are doing to improve on your operation; the go and celebrate that and share that with your friends and neighbors. Consumers: use modern technology to connect with farms and ranches in your area.
The second thing you can do is create social media accounts for your operations. It doesn’t matter whether you are big or small. Agriculture is such a diverse industry that comes in all shapes, sizes, and forms. Every operation is important and should be celebrated. The average American is four generations removed from the farm, and the majority of people will never to experience agriculture first-hand. There is an the old saying that goes “pictures (and videos) are worth a thousand words”; but always remember that sharing the “why” behind your story is equally as valuable. Farmers: go ahead and share your story through photos, videos, or blogs. Consumers go ahead and ask questions or share your experience in the market or in the kitchen.
The last thing is to get involved! Everyone is busy, and this is even more true for farmers and ranchers. Farmers: I encourage you to invite friends and family out to your farm or ranch or create opportunities for the public to do so as well. Consumers, I encourage you to ask for opportunities, to always be curious, and to remember that there is always a “reason why” behind every agricultural practice.
So just remember whether you are behind a microphone in a radio booth, behind the chute working cattle, behind the laptop writing a story, or behind the combine harvesting crop we all have a responsibility to share our story of agriculture. At the end of the day no matter what our profession is we all end up in the kitchen behind the plate.
Did you miss out on hearing me on this week's Farmer's Daughter?
Listen to it here: SD Farm Families - Farmer's Daughter June25th.mp3
Be sure to tune in each week during the "It's Your Agribusiness" show on Monday's at 10am on KELO 1320 AM and 107.9 FM