Wednesday, March 30, 2011

What does a farmer Look Like?

The other day I had the opportunity to share the 'amazing' soybean story to a little over 600 4th graders in central Nebraska at a Life on the Farm field trip. About half way through the day, I started asking them-after I introduced myself as a farmer who grows corn, soybeans, alfalfa and fed cattle, "do I look like the farmer you thought you would meet today". And every response was a a very resounding NO.
Than I started asking 'so what did you think a farmer like myself would look like?'
I was shocked, but not surprised. Most of the responses were 'overalls and a straw hat'. And I got several that said they thought I would be dirty with some hay on myself. But the one that really made my jaw drop was--they thought I would have a pitch fork.
So I pointed out that they had met many farmers at this event and no one fit that description.
I was very relieved to hear that I looked 'normal'. I did tell them that there are many dirty jobs on a farm and we do get very dirty (just check out Mike Rowe and 'Dirty Jobs')--its just part of the job.
So as usual there is much to learn from our kids, but this points out just how much work we have to do in telling the amazing story of not just how we feed our family but our part in caring for the soil that raises our crops and tending to the livestock that all contribute in helping to feed the world.

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