Posted March 20, 2018
What is the first thing that comes to mind when someone says “farmer”? For some, they picture a man in a field wearing a flannel and overalls, holding a pitchfork. For others, they picture a person with a passion for growing our food and preserving the land, a resilient mentality and a strong faith to get them through the hard times. The American farmer is someone so cherished, they created a whole National Agriculture Month in dedication to them.
From the meals we sit down with our families to enjoy, to the clothes we have on our back, and even the ability to drive our cars from destination to destination, farmers were there from the start, providing our food, fuel and fiber.
Even though farming and ranching is such a crucial part of our lives and economy, only 2% of the U.S. population is involved in production agriculture. There are roughly about 2.1 million farms across America, and the average U.S. farm feeds 165 people annually both in the United States and internationally.
Even if you are not involved in agriculture first-hand, there are lots of ways to still support farmers and ranchers, and celebrate National Agriculture Month.
Eatwheat.org, a website dedicated to telling the story of wheat farmers, along with recipes, decorative crafts and learning information is a great starting point for learning about agriculture. While reading through the website, you even have the opportunity to immerse yourself in wheat growing with some fun projects.
Some different things to see and read while on Eatwheat.org include:
- Growing your own Easter basket wheat grass, a project that can be fun for the whole family.
- Rather than buying artificial grass from the store, this is a fun way to watch your wheat grow with your children, and then put it in their Easter baskets for them to enjoy. The project is very simple, with only a few items needed to grow your very own wheat! This project is located under the ‘get inspired’ tab.
- If you’re wanting to learn more about the wheat crop, its origins and other fun facts, the ‘learn’ tab offers some fun information!
- For starters, did you know George Washington had two professions. We all know him as the first president of the United States, but he was also one of the nation’s first large-scale wheat farmers! If you’re interested in some cool history facts and learning more about the respected president, click on the George Washington’s Wheat article!
- Another article to enhance your wheat knowledge is, ‘What Does a Bushel of Wheat Mean to Me?’ which will teach you where exactly a bushel of wheat goes after it has been harvested.
- If you’re interested in cookin’ up a delicious meal with wheat, you can click on the ‘recipes’ tab and find five pages of recipes to satisfy anyone’s taste buds!
- Finally, if you’re interested in learning about the farmers who put food on the table for everyone, you can click on the ‘stories’ tab. Here you will learn about the people who put their time, energy and faith into the crop, year after year, to be able to supply the world with wheat. Their stories don’t just talk about their way of farming, but include their families and their passions outside of farming – and ultimately, why they farm.
Celebrating the American farmer has become a lot easier with all of the resources available to learn and do from the comfort of your own home. Just by doing one or two of the things on this list, you can help support farming with the knowledge you gain.
As the month of March carries on, don’t forget to slow down for the farm equipment on the road, wave to the man out checking his fields and ultimately thank a farmer for their endless hard work and passion.
Happy National Agriculture Month!