Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Celebrating National Ag Day

Get ready to break out the overalls and send thanks to farmers because today, March 25th, is National Ag Day! National Ag Day is extremely important, especially in the world we live in today, which is dominated by technology and fast-paced lifestyles. Although agriculture is not the main focus of the country, it is still essential for the economy and for everyone everywhere!

Agriculture is behind every piece of food you eat, the clothes you put on and even the crayons you used as a kid (or do still) to color with. The U.S. is the world’s largest producer and exporter of corn. The amount of the country’s crop exports has grown about 1.9% each year since 1990, and 2012 preliminary reports show that the agriculture sector is growing according to the USDA website. Despite all this, agriculture is often an overlooked sector. Too many young people go through primary and secondary education without acquiring any knowledge about agriculture.  The once agri-based country is getting out of touch with its roots and young people are growing up without knowing what agriculture is all about. That is where National Ag Day comes in. It is huge step to redressing the lack of recognition and knowledge of agriculture. 

National Ag Day was founded in 1973 and is organized by the Agriculture Council of America (ACA). The ACA is dedicated to “increasing the public’s awareness of agriculture’s role in modern society” (www.agday.org). Ag Day is a time to recognize and celebrate all that agriculture provides. There are too few people that really understand the contributions agriculture makes to society; Ag Day’s purpose is to change this. Each year farmers, agricultural associations, schools, government agencies and many, many others celebrate the day. It also encourages Americans to learn more about foods and fibers, and to consider a career in ag. The First National Agriculture Day was planned by the National Agri-Marketing Association and the American National CattleWomen. In 1979, the ACA coordinated the first National Ag Day celebrations in Washington, D.C., and they still do so today. There will be events in the nation’s capital from March 24-26; many of them are free of charge. Since then, the celebration has grown a lot and is present all across the country in schools, organizations, and organizations.  March 25th is not just the first day of spring, but it’s National Agriculture Day as well! Go out and spread the word to celebrate America’s farmers.

-Brittany Levine
National Grange Intern

Facts taken from: www.agday.org and www.usda.gov

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