It may sound too simple, but there’s a big reason why everyone should take an interest in American agriculture: food.
The fact is that if you eat, then agriculture has an impact on your everyday life.
Annika Wiebers, a freshman at Kansas State University, plans to spread that message wide and far. Wiebers recently was selected by the National 4-H Council as Kansas’ sole student representative – and one of just 10 across the United States – to become an advocate for agriculture, in recognition of National Ag Day March 22.
“It was an honor to even be nominated for this opportunity because there were only two nominees per state,” Wiebers said. “Then, to be one of 10 selected in the nation is really amazing.”
National Ag Day is an effort to remind Americans – especially children – how their food is grown, and what farmers do to make that food safe and wholesome.
“As we become increasingly consumer-driven and have fewer and fewer people on the farm, the opportunity to educate consumers on where their food comes from becomes increasingly necessary,” said Kelsey Nordyke, a Kansas 4-H ag sciences specialist.
In addition to training, Wiebers will be talking to farmers and meeting with Kansas’ Senate delegation in Washington D.C.
Wiebers, who studies agricultural communications at K-State, said one of her career goals is to “promote agricultural literacy in populations that are further removed from commercial farming.”
National Ag Day is sponsored annually by the Agriculture Council of America (located in Overland Park, Kan.) to celebrate the abundance provided by America’s farmers. The Council promotes the thought that all K-12 students should receive regular education about agriculture.
In addition, families can help encourage children to learn more with such simple activities as:
- Shopping at a local Farmer’s Market and cooking the purchases together.
- Planting a kitchen garden together; tomatoes grow well in a container.
- Visiting a local farm so that children can see first-hand where eggs, milk, chicken and other foods come from.
More information about agricultural literacy is available online from the Agriculture Council of America. More information about activities available through Kansas 4-H also is available online or from local extension offices in Kansas.