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The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

The Student News Site of Texas A&M University - College Station

The Battalion

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The BattalionMay 4, 2024

Event bolsters agricultural awareness efforts

 
 

For students who wonder where the shirts they put on, the milk they drink or the cereals they eat in the morning come from – Farmers Fight Day provided answers on Thursday.
Farmers Fight Day is designed to promote awareness of agricultural industries and educate students about the importance of agriculture through on-campus
“We live in a world that is generations removed from the farm at the fast pace of today’s society,” said Mollie Lastovica, communications lead advocate for the event and junior agricultural communications and journalism major. “From what we eat to what we wear, we are dependent on the industry in a number of ways.”
Agricultural organizations on campus selected their own area of interest to promote. Senior agribusiness major Brandy Dangelmayr advocated for the Agricultural Economics Society by informing students about the Farm Bill, which helps support farmers against bankruptcy during difficult economic conditions.
“What we’re trying to do is spark interest and get people thinking about agriculture and how it impacts our world.” Dangelmayr said.
The event was originally conceived in 2012 as a movement on campus to combat negative media portrayals of the industry and has grown into an advocacy event. The goal of the Thursday event was to reconnect students with the importance of agriculture in daily life.
“Students are increasingly getting removed from agriculture,” Emily Jack, campus outreach coordinator and sophomore animal science major said. “Part of our goal is bringing those organizations on campus, to show [students] that agriculture is producing all of this for you and that farmers and ranchers are working hard.”
The event is the culmination of a weeklong campaign, during which advocates of agriculture education have been visiting schools and distributing coloring books to children regarding where their food comes from. Farmers Fight Day seeks to be a tool to solve the problem of a growing gap between consumers and producers.
“As people grow more and more concerned with where their food comes from, agriculturalists must meet that consumer demand by being transparent and educational in their practices,” Lastovica said. “We must reach out to those who are less connected to farms and ranches to assure them that the methods and practices of our farms and ranches are humane, ethical and devoted to providing consumers with the safest food products.”
The event also provided an avenue for career interest in an industry that needs willing farmers and ranchers.
“The average age of a farmer is 70 years old,” Jack said. “As that population is getting older and older, we need people to replace those jobs. Some of the people we reach on campus may get excited and want to do that as a career.”
Farmers Fight is planning to continue to educate and advocate by organizing a national advocacy conference for fall 2013.
“It is essential that farmers and ranchers are directly connected to the people who keep them in business – consumers,” Lastovica said. “Honest, accurate and truthful dissemination of information is necessary to assure those who purchase agricultural goods that they are investing in the best products in the world.”

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