Smith: National Ag Day is designed to recognize the importance of agriculture in the lives of every American. With a number events taking place across the country, it’s a day to celebrate farmers and ranchers and appreciate all that they provide. Isabella Chism, vice chair of the American Farm Bureau Women’s Leadership Committee and member of the Agriculture Council of America, says National Ag Day is a great opportunity for people involved in all types of agriculture to connect with people outside of the industry.
Chism: I really like making those connections outside of farming because that’s when I see the spark in someone’s eye when I talk about what I do, what my family and I do, on our farm, and they’re maybe hearing something in a different way for the very first time, and I feel like a success when someone understands a little more about what we do on our family farm.
Smith: Chism says agriculture has come a long way over the last decade because of advances in technology.
Chism: How many of us have smartphones and would just groan at the fact if we were told we had to go back to the flip phone and texting and communicating that way? It’s much the same way with agriculture. We can say that we’ve increased yields five-fold across the board because we use the technology.
Smith: Chism says the improved technology helps farmers protect animal and soil health. Innovations like precision agriculture allow farmers to place seeds and seed protectors in the ground with extreme accuracy and prevent waste. She says it’s also vital for farmers and ranchers to share their personal stories.
Chism: It’s important as I watch our children and grandchildren talk about what we do on the farm and see the reactions of their peers when they go out and pick an ear of sweet corn and bite right into it. That’s safe food, and it also happens to be affordable food, and food we grow on our farm, as do many other farm families throughout the United States.
Smith: Chad Smith, Washington.