Innovation earns national recognition for county Farm Bureaus
» January 6, 2005 «
One county Farm Bureau recognized that Southeast Asian immigrant farmers would be blindsided by new air-quality regulations, and took action to resolve the problem. Another saw that budget cuts had hamstrung cooking instruction in home-economics classes, and arranged food donations to pick up the slack. Now, both programs have earned national honors.
The Fresno County Farm Bureau and the San Joaquin Farm Bureau Federation are among a select group from across the nation chosen to participate in the County Farm Bureau Idea Exchange. The showcase occurs Jan. 9-10, during the American Farm Bureau Federation annual meeting in Charlotte, N.C.
Judges honored Fresno County Farm Bureau for a successful outreach to immigrant farmers from Southeast Asian nations. The local Farm Bureau recognized that Fresno County's large population of immigrant farmers might not be aware of the impact of new air-quality regulations affecting farms and ranches. It organized a workshop to explain new rules restricting agricultural burning, and arranged translators to make the information available in the five main dialects used by local farmers.
As a followup to the workshop, the county Farm Bureau helped immigrant farmers obtain shredding equipment to allow for disposal of farm wastes in an environmentally friendly manner.
In San Joaquin County, the Farm Bureau worked with other agricultural groups to make locally grown farm products available to home-economics classes in county schools. Budget constraints have reduced the amount of cooking instruction in home-economics classes. The county Farm Bureau, working with the San Joaquin-Stanislaus Cattlewomen and the local chapter of California Women for Agriculture, arranged donations of fresh fruits, vegetables and meats to 36 public schools.
Students in the home-economics classes also received recipes, food handling and nutritional information about each of the commodities provided, helping young consumers learn how to use locally grown farm products.
At the County Farm Bureau Idea Exchange, leaders from each participating county display information about their innovative programs and provide practical advice about starting similar programs in other regions.
Farm Bureau is the nation's largest farm organization and the California Farm Bureau is the largest agricultural group in the state.
Permission for use is granted, however, credit must be made to the California Farm Bureau Federation when reprinting this item.Top