“For USFRA, no question about agriculture is off the table,” said USFRA chair Nancy Kavazanjian during the press conference. “We want to make sure farmers and ranchers are involved in the most important conversations about food. We know that impact on the environment is a frequent conversation when it comes to food production. While farmers and ranchers are stewards of the land, we have not always been vocal voices in the environmental conversation, and we want that to change.”
USFRA is using the results as a foundation to better answer consumer questions about sustainability and agriculture. The survey found that 56 percent of all respondents agreed with the statement, “Farmers and ranchers use new technologies and innovations to protect the environment.” While 47 percent of all respondents agreed with the statement, “The way that most of today’s farming and ranching operations in the U.S. grow and raise food meets the standards of sustainability.” However, when presented with the same statement, the survey revealed that women are less likely than men to agree that farming and ranching practices are sustainable – 37 percent of women versus 59 percent of men responding they are in agreement.
Additionally, the survey findings provided several insights to help farmers and ranchers better engage in conversations about sustainability practices on their farms or ranches. Among the findings:
- Consumers are interested in learning more about what farmers and ranchers touch most – The survey revealed a need to frame stories about sustainability around water, soil, air and habitat.
- Consumers are interested in the human impact of sustainability – Respondents shared interest in the actions farmers and ranchers are taking to improve human health through access to safe, nutritious food and the impact they are making on the local community, specifically improvements to the social and economic well-being of agriculture communities.
- Consumers are interested in how agriculture is focused on the future, versus defining past successes
When discussing sustainability, respondents want to hear about future commitments to the environment versus stories about a farming operations’ multi-generational history. Consumers are also interested in learning how farmers and ranchers are doing more with fewer resources and impact, while preserving the land for the next generation.
Learn more about this survey in this interview – Interview with Nancy Kavazanjian, USFRA Chair
Hear more in this press conference with USFRA CEO Randy Krotz and Nancy Kavazanjian- USFRA Press Conference
View and download photos from the press conference in the 2015 Farm Progress Photo Album.