Monday, February 14, 2011

AgBC's: F is for Farmers

We can't live without them. Farmers grow the food and fiber products we need and use every single day. Some say (myself included!) that farming is some of the most important work on earth!

Big or small, organic of conventional, farmers are vital to our livelihoods! But no matter what their size or production method, did you know 99% of American's farms are family-owned? Even the really big farms?

Farmers account for less than 2 percent of the world's population...but they feed the entire world population each and every day. In fact, modern agricultural methods have improved production so much that each American farmer feeds 155 1940, each American farmer only fed 19 people. Wow, that's a big responsibility!

Keep those farmers and producers in mind the next time you go to the grocery store. They work hard year round to keep those shelves stocked with safe, affordable and abundant food supplies. We are so lucky to enjoy the safest most affordable food supply in the world right here in America!

And today, the corn and soybeans farmers grow can even be turned into biofuels like ethanol and biodiesel that can be used to fuel the vehicles on our roadways.

While you're thinking about thanking farmers for your food (and even some of our fuel!), take some time to learn more about their very important jobs, too! Here are some ideas:
  • Learn more about agriculture in your classroom! Use the resources of Ag in the Classroom online!
  • Many farmers and ranchers are now active online and in social media like Facebook, Twitter and blogs. Here are some of our favorite dairy farmers that we featured last June during National Dairy Month.
  • Visit a local farm and learn about how they produce the food you eat!
  • Find out what farm life is really like...check out the lives of the Real Farmwives of America as they share stories of life on the farm, the struggles and challenges they face as parents, crafts, recipes and more.
This series is inspired by the book The ABC's of Fruits and Vegetables and Beyond.

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