By Kamal I. Latham
Did you know the annual statewide economic impact from farmers and ranchers is over $127 billion? Agriculture is a pillar industry in Florida, the third largest state in the nation.
Food is vital as everybody needs to eat and the people who produce the edibles we consume are very important. They sow the seeds, harvest the crops, raise the livestock, and process the goods that nourish our bodies. Who represents many of these hard-working people? Florida Farm Bureau Federation.
Headquartered in Gainesville, Farm Bureau is the voice of Florida Agriculture. “Florida Farm Bureau Federation is a member organization that is dedicated to supporting and enhancing agricultural enterprise in our state. Our grassroots activities promote sustainable production by farm families as well as economic development in our rural communities,” said G.B. Crawford, Director for Public Relations for Florida Farm Bureau Federation.
“Although Farm Bureau’s heritage is closely linked to agriculture, we cherish the values shared by most Floridians. The policies adopted by our members express a guiding belief in a limited government, citizen participation in public affairs, incentive-based regulation of business and a commitment to family life,” added Mr. Crawford.
Who Do They Represent?
Florida Farm Bureau represents farmers and ranchers who produce all 300 of the agricultural commodities in the Sunshine State. It is the largest agricultural organization in Florida with 145,000+ members. Food matters and those responsible for bringing it from the farmland to the dinner table impact millions of people.
What Do They Do?
Florida Farm Bureau conducts national, state, and local advocacy. Desiring to see farmers and ranchers prosper and a better Florida for all, the organization crafts and advances public policy positions. Advisory Committees play an important role in the policy development process and address diverse industries such as beef, citrus, dairy, fruit/vegetable, forestry, labor, taxes, trade, and water/natural resources.
Who Are They?
Mr. John L. Hoblick serves as president of Florida Farm Bureau Federation, which is staffed by a team of dedicated professionals. The organization is governed by a state board of directors comprised of its executive officers, district directors, and representatives from the young farmer and rancher leadership group and the women’s leadership committee. There are 60 County Farm Bureau offices, which collectively constitute the grassroots engine of the organization.
Young Leadership Development
Florida Farm Bureau believes in preparing the next generation of leaders in agriculture. The young farmer and rancher leadership group provides opportunities for agriculturalists between the ages of 18 and 35 to hone their leadership skills. It focuses on personal growth, media training, public speaking, issue advocacy, legislative awareness, and service leadership. A service program led by this group donated more than 24 million pounds of fresh produce and food for the hungry.
Women’s Leadership Program
Farm Bureau Women are committed to promoting a positive image of agriculture and educating the public through events and programs. Women’s Leadership Program engagements provide unique opportunities for networking, communication, leadership, and political involvement.