I get a kick out of ag's never ending effort to continue to finance its own industry.
While there are numerous examples I could pull up of this, the latest on my desk announces the Washington wine industry Annual Cup Race golf tournament. The money goes to advancing research, education and leadership in the business.
The 13th such annual event will be held at Meadow Springs Country Club in Richland on July 15. If you want to tee up, go to www.washingtonwindfoundation.org or call (509) 782-1108 to register or learn more about the event.
The Washington Wine Industry Foundation, sponsoring the Shotgun Scramble, is a nonprofit with a mission to bolster the state's viticulture and enology sectors.
Wine industry interests, golf enthusiasts, wine drinkers and anyone else who wants to join in on the fun are invited to get a foursome put together and sign up to play on one of Washington's premier private courses.
Individual registrations are also available.
If you can get your registration in by June 15, a $150 per person signup rate will apply.
But those who wish can get involved just sponsoring the event with scholarships and prize donations. Current sponsors with teams include Bleyhl Farm Service, Gamache Vintners, Royal Organic Products and Northwest Farm Credit Services.
You might win a five-day cruise for two for each member of the Low Gross winning team.
Contests include putting, closest to the pin, and a game called "cork chipping."
Kudos to the Washington wine industry for helping out in this important event.
It is always a pleasure to help out in promoting such ag-related activities that underscore the importance of self-help in our business. Those who aren't taking up the gauntlet of generating research and marketing study funds are missing the boat, and ought to think about getting on board. This is the age of self-sufficiency in funding as government coffers earmarked for farming continue to get smaller.
Perhaps no ag-related entity notices the scarce government budget dollars these days like our land grant universities. I have never seen such a flurry of activity among staffs to encourage researchers to reach deeper for grants. The challenge is that there is so much good research in the pipelines today, how do we attract the dollars to keep the lab lights burning?
That's where industry dollars come into play, and the contribution our business makes to public research today has never been more necessary. Keep up the good work and keep those ag scientists on the job.
It is research that has honed the cutting edge advantage the U.S. has in global ag, and when such studies are dulled, we will notice it in the marketplace.
Independent research is also growing in this environment, and more and more organizations are turning to private scientists for their test plots and other needs. While this is a good supplementation of our university link, we should try to encourage our schools to further their transparent work that benefits all in our industry.