Innovative programs earn honors for County Farm Bureaus
» December 9, 2008 «
Building healthier communities, raising hunger awareness and promoting sustainability are just a few things that California county Farm Bureaus have been actively involved in this past year. The California Farm Bureau Federation recognized six county Farm Bureaus for outstanding activities, during its 90th Annual Meeting this week in Burlingame.
Four county Farm Bureaus earned Programs of Excellence awards for success in work that advances Farm Bureau's goal of protecting California family farms and ranches:
- Celebrating the opening of a new county Farm Bureau office, the Glenn County Farm Bureau hosted a variety of events in the new building to improve relationships with the county Board of Supervisors plus local business partners and media.
- Working closely with local officials, the Lake County Farm Bureau helped shape the county's general plan in a way that minimally affected local farms, and led the charge to save farmers and ranchers money in the irrigated lands water-quality program. Additionally, Lake County Farm Bureau has worked actively in dealing with a proposed biotechnology ordinance in the county. The county Farm Bureau also hosted work-force safety training programs and created a strategic plan that revitalized its board of directors.
- Defending private property rights, the Marin County Farm Bureau is working with county supervisors and staff to realign part of the proposed California Coastal Trail from agricultural land, and highlighted the benefits of grazing in the Point Reyes National Seashore. Marin County Farm Bureau also supported a proposal to bring back freight rail service to the area, in order to provide cheaper grains and other feeds to local dairy farmers while further reducing freeway traffic and greenhouse gas emissions.
- The San Luis Obispo County Farm Bureau has been instrumental in creating the "Central Coast Grown" campaign to support local agriculture while educating consumers about the benefits of buying local food. The county Farm Bureau Women's Committee works annually to raise money for local scholarships and this past year partnered with the San Luis Obispo County Young Farmers and Ranchers to raise money for the county's food bank and Hunger Awareness Day.
Additionally, two county Farm Bureaus were honored for receiving the American Farm Bureau Federation County Activities of Excellence award. The two county Farm Bureaus will be honored for their efforts to improve consumer perception of agriculture, during the AFBF Annual Meeting in San Antonio, Texas, next month:
- Creating a public awareness campaign titled "Agriculture Affects Us All," the Los Angeles County Farm Bureau helped urban audiences understand the importance of agriculture while working with media outlets to promote Ag Day LA. As a result of its efforts, the county Farm Bureau increased its membership by 25 percent.
- For the third year in a row, the Sacramento County Farm Bureau sponsored a free health fair for residents in Sacramento delta communities. More than 250 men, women and children attend the fair each year, for health screenings, dental exams, hearing exams, immunizations, electronic fingerprinting, bicycle safety demonstrations and digital mammograms for women.
The California Farm Bureau Federation, the state's largest farm organization, works to protect family farms and ranches on behalf of 91,000 members statewide.
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