March 19 is National Ag Day; how are you celebrating?

America’s farmers are “Growing a Climate for Tomorrow.” They are the proud stewards of our land, water and air. Farmers are innovators committed to leaving a healthy world for future generations. Show your thanks by recognizing their hard work on National Ag Day – a great time to thank farmers for all they do.

The theme of National Ag Day is “Growing a Climate for Tomorrow.” It is organized by the Agriculture Council of America (ACA), a nonprofit organization composed of leaders in the agricultural, food and fiber community, dedicating its efforts to increasing the public’s awareness of agriculture’s role in modern society.

The National Ag Day program encourages every American to:

  • Understand how food and fiber products are produced
  • Appreciate the role agriculture plays in providing safe, abundant and affordable products
  • Acknowledge and consider career opportunities in agriculture, food, and fiber
  • Value the essential role of agriculture in maintaining a strong economy

What is Agriculture and Why is it Important?

The Dictionary defines agriculture as the science or practice of farming, including cultivation of the soil or the growing of crops and the rearing of animals to provide food, wool and other products. But what does that mean and why does that matter to the everyday consumer?

Wisconsin has a strong agricultural heritage. Those traditions carry on today making Wisconsin one of the most diverse agricultural states in the nation, producing a variety of dairy, livestock, vegetables and specialty crops. Wisconsin agriculture also generates $104.8 billion annually for the state’s economy. Additionally, Wisconsin agriculture provides 435,700 jobs or 11.8% of the state’s employment on an annual basis.

Most people know Wisconsin as America’s Dairyland. Our milk is used by Wisconsin cheesemakers to develop more than 600 varieties, types and styles of award-winning cheese, from traditional cheddar and mozzarella to hand-crafted artisan styles.

Wisconsin’s cranberry marshes lead the nation in production. Wisconsin also ranks first in the country for mink pelts, corn for silage and snap beans for processing. The state also produces a large tart cherry crop, producing 10.1 million pounds in 2020. 

The Wisconsin Department of Agriculture, Trade and Consumer Protection’s mission is to partner with all the citizens of Wisconsin to grow the economy by promoting quality food, healthy plants and animals, sound use of land and water resources, and a fair marketplace.

How You Can Celebrate National Ag Day

Celebrate agriculture by making a farm-to-table meal with your family or throw a cook-off party with friends. Volunteer at your local school and plan an activity to teach kids about agriculture. You can also research agricultural issues affecting your region or even contact your legislator and remind them of the importance of supporting farm initiatives.

Another way to celebrate is by sharing what agriculture means to you in a photo on social media or even checking out local farms in your area that offer tours. Learn how farmers grown, sell and market their food.

Celebrating National Ag Day encourages everyone to value the essential role of agriculture in maintaining a strong economy. Appreciate the role agriculture plays in providing safe, abundant and affordable products.