The inaugural National Agriculture Day initiative driven by Fairfax Agricultural Media and the National Farmers Federation late last year was a fantastic celebration of all things ag.
We are obviously a little slow on the uptake as the US has been celebrating National Ag Day for at least 42 years, however we have to start somewhere, and the National Agriculture Day was a great start.
The reality is that the ag industry should be celebrated every day and it is many things, to many people ….
It’s the value of hard work, the heartbreak of losing crops, its perseverance.
It’s one acre or a million depending on where you roll out your swag, it’s green fields and glass houses. It’s the stewards of the land, keen environmentalists.
It’s boiling the billy, the smoko, the CWA.
It’s the ringer from the Top End, the jillaroo in the stock camp, the agronomist working the Wimmera, the viticulturist tending the vines, it’s the length and breadth of this nation.
It is working with the dogs, cursing at Huey and his lack of rain, it’s the researchers toiling away to develop new drought tolerant breeds.
It’s the truckie, the agents, bankers and brokers getting commodities to the markets.
It’s sitting on a tractor, it’s the bees at work, early morning starts in the dairy, the camp draft, the camp fire, the camp oven.
And to borrow from Paul Harvey … it is the seeding, weeding, feeding, breeding, tilling, plowing and planting.
It’s more than a part of life. It’s a passion, a lifestyle; it is the glue that binds together rural communities.
More than anything, it’s a noble pursuit, and one, that should be held in the highest of regards by our urban consumers and be given greater credit for its innovation and importance to the overall health of our economy.
National Agriculture Day will continue to grow and become a focal point for the ag industry in coming years.
There is little doubt that consumers are becoming increasingly concerned about provenance issues regarding the food that they consume, and whether that food is being produced in an ethical and sustainable way.
National Ag Day will hopefully help to facilitate that communication process and broach the ever-widening gap between the city and country.
– Trent Thorne, agribusiness lawyer