As part of my Earth Day celebration, I spent the morning speaking with Michigan Agri-Women. I mean, who better to spend Earth Day with than some lovely farm women?!
I spoke about why I “ag-vocate” on my blog and the importance of standing up for agriculture. I also gave the ladies some tips I have learned along the way about having those difficult conversations with people that may have been moved by some misinformation or bad marketing gimmicks related to agriculture. We ended up having a wonderful conversation about diffusing tense debates, how to handle internet trolls, and even admitting when we don’t know something. Thank you to all of the ladies that spoke up – I loved hearing from all of you and getting your perspective as well!
We also heard from Michigan State Representative Beth Griffins. As a first term legislator, she was very interested and excited to learn more about agriculture. I really appreciated that she was willing to listen, hear about farmer’s concerns, and talk about potential solutions. Unfortunately, very few elected leaders now have a direct background in agriculture. While Beth is the granddaughter of farmers, she admitted she was originally from the suburbs until she moved to a more rural area to raise her family. However, it is very encouraging to see that she was genuinely interested in farming issues and participated in meaningful discussions with us. I’m excited to see how her political career develops now that she is on the state level.
If you’re involved in agriculture in Michigan, I highly encourage you to check out the organization and consider signing up. It is always refreshing to be surrounded by supportive farm women! You can find a link to the organization’s website here and their Facebook page here.
Thank you to Nikki (and Jennifer!) for asking me to be part of your meeting today and allowing me to share my story with you!