Bibs, Fried Chicken and a few Animals? Not Today's Farms

Telling Your Story

Many consumers view farmers in a children's book mentality. How can we move away from that mindset?

Published on: March 13, 2014

The average person in America is two to four generations removed from the farm. That means that many people don't even have Grandma and Grandpa's farm as a reference point for what a farm looks like to them.

It is suggested that if you want an image of what most people believe a farm looks like, look at the farms depicted in children's books. Most of the children's farm books show the image of the 1950s farm stead with a red barn, a milk cow, a few pigs, sheep, chickens, horses, and a fishing pond. The farmer wears bib overalls and mother makes homemade fried chicken for supper. Does that represent what your farm looks like?

Related: Nostalgia Plays A Huge Role In The Perception Of Agriculture

How could you invite others in to view advanced farming technologies?
How could you invite others in to view advanced farming technologies?

To think about this in a different context, what is the first image that pops into your head when you think of a telephone? The image might be a landline phone that tethered you to a wall, but immediately your mind zooms forward to a smart phone that has more functions than most of us know what to do with. How do we get our urban counterparts to perhaps initially think 1950s red barn but zoom forward to a modern farm?

With spring just around the corner, look at how high tech planting is on your farm. How could you invite others in to see how advanced your planting techniques are? What would you tell others about the accuracy you have today and why that's important?

Related: Technology In Agriculture Is Necessary

The average person who is not on a farm does not realize how precise a farm is today and why that's important. So much of what we do by utilizing modern farming techniques is to maximize yield and optimize inputs. It's about improving each year.

Some farms will invite friends and family out to the farm to ride with them. Other farms will do a more formal "lunch and learn" type event where there might be a formal presentation directed toward community leaders about their farm. Many others will share their farm experience through social media, such as pictures posted to Facebook.

As you prepare for spring planting, consider how you can do something to share what your farm looks like with the community around you.