By Shaun Haney
This week I was scouring the internet looking for stories and I stumbled across a report from SteinbachOnline about what we call people in agriculture. At the Canadian Young Farmers Forum in Winnipeg earlier this month David Herle a pollster with the Gandalf Group told the group of young farmers that the industry should do away with terms producer, grower and especially agri-business. Herle’s reason for this is that he feels consumers trust farmers and not businesses.
In my opinion this is ridiculous. Why should we be ashamed that we run businesses. Whether you have a small farm or large farm with twenty employes you are running an agri-business. There is nothing wrong with the word farmer but avoiding producer and agri-buiness makes no sense to me.
I thought I would call my media friend Lyndsey Smith (Editor of Grainews) to talk about David Herle’s comments. If you cannot see the video of Lyndsey Smith and Shaun Haney discussing the use of farmer, producer and agribusiness and how these words impact consumers , Click Here
Farmers are producers. We grow crops and raise livestock that supply the world with food. I think this whole issue is like trying to distinguish between an oilman and oil tycoon. Lets be proud of our industry and what we do. The farmer has evolved overtime from the son that couldn’t get a real job to one of sophistication and complexity . For someone that runs a farm, being the farmer is just one of the roles that they must execute. Being a farmer means you are the agronomist, hedger, marketer, HR manager, CEO and others. Hmmmmm???? That sounds like a business to me. The consumer is smart and doesn’t require us to dumb things down for them all the time.
Its time that the industry quits selling itself short and starts being proud of what it is. We are farmers, producers and agri-business people. Get it straight David Herle and others.