November 7, 2016

It stands to reason that a way of life, like farming, where only a small percentage of the population participates, would be vulnerable to misconceptions. American consumers are largely removed from the production of their food and fiber. As such, they are also unaware of the many challenges that farmers face and why farm policy and crop insurance are vital risk management tools to ensure both the competitiveness of American agriculture and the security of our national food supply.

This is a topic that Farm Policy Facts addressed just a few weeks ago when it highlighted a Facebook post that had spread quickly across social media platforms because of its honest and raw look at a farm family’s life during a stressful time right before harvest.

We wrote at the time:

This is a scene from the life of an American farm family. These are the conversations. These are the worries and frustrations. Raising families while also raising crops and livestock that consumers enjoy without ever stopping to think about the work involved.

These farm families are growing our national food and fiber supply as 97 percent of all farms in the United States are family-owned operations.

Yet, to listen to the special interest groups in Washington, D.C. one would think that our food is grown by corporations, not farm families…

These special interest groups are relentless in their pursuit to gut the very tools, like crop insurance and farm policy, that enables farm families to overcome the challenges of natural disasters, sour markets, foreign subsidies, regulatory burdens, and other uncertainties.

We often speak about farm policy in an academic or abstract way not connecting the dots between how it has an impact on the lives and livelihoods of real people, real families, and real communities.

This is why Farm Policy Facts is beginning a new series this month on its digital platforms called #FarmerPortraits that showcases the men and women who we all rely upon to grow our national food and fiber supply. These are the faces of American agricultural production. They are the reason farm policy matters.

Follow the series #FarmerPortraits on Facebook (FarmPolicyFacts), Twitter (@FPFNews), and Instagram (@FarmPolicyFacts).