The discussion about consumers and farmers connecting can be exhausting, never-ending and downright frustrating for farmers and maybe even some consumers. Sometimes in any strained relationship people lash out, they vent, and they cry for smoother times.
One of the disconnects to this relationship can be the role that the food company plays, but that’s for discussion in other posts (see some of those food posts here).
This incredibly viral tweet was posted by Cam Houle @dailydairydiary on April 10th. As of April 13th, the post had already received 936 retweets and 1300 likes.
I’ve figured it out. Farming is the art of losing money while working 400 hrs a month feeding people that think you’re trying to kill them.
— Cam Houle (@dailydairydiary) April 10, 2016
Clearly the above tweet struck a chord with some people. Like many jobs, careers, or activities, farming can appear to be thankless. Likely many firefighters, police officers and teachers feel like they are just as isolated from a simple thank you. Millions of people eat everyday without thanking or thinking of a farmer. Some of our RealAg community likely believe that the relationship between consumers and farmers has never been more estranged. This does not mean though that the relationship cannot be repaired or improved. Even the worst marriages can be saved. As society gets more generations away from the farm the strain on the relationship with the farm will continue to be tested.
To be fair, I sometimes have the same sense of the farmer / consumer relationship. I posted this tweet from the RealAgriculture account while walking down Front Street in Toronto.
— RealAgriculture (@realagriculture) April 13, 2016
I don’t want to sway the poll that sits at the bottom of this post, but I don’t think they are ungrateful. I think their behaviour and decision-making at times is loaded with lack of knowledge and irony. I did not buy food from the food truck in the picture even if it has Farmers Feed Cities stickers.
Food is emotional. Farmers have an important role in the food value chain. Food companies market in honest and dishonest ways and consumers have a genuine interest in the source and health of what they eat, but are still very detached from the methods and reasons for modern farm production.
So how do you feel about the relationship of consumers and farmers. Are you frustrated? Are you open to change? Is there any way to truly connect these ever separated parties? Let your opinion be noted in the poll below: