U.S. Farmers & Ranchers in Action (USFRA) held its fifth annual Honor the Harvest Forum in Texas. The multi-day convening on a local ranch gathered leaders from across the food and agriculture value chain to hold a dialogue centered on co-creating sustainable food systems of the future.
The Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council is a longtime supporter of USFRA. Martin County farmer Rochelle Krusemark, a director with MSR&PC, attended the Honor the Harvest Forum in Rosston, Tex., in her role as a USFRA board member.
“It was really good, the best one yet,” said Krusemark, who is also a USFRA ambassador. “They crafted an extraordinary event, lots of good people participated and had conversations.”
Honor the Harvest Forum is a multi-day dynamic event that connects farmers with executive leaders throughout the agricultural value chain centered on co-creating sustainable food systems of the future. The forum, held this year in Texas, is an invitation-only executive leadership convening designed to explore topline challenges facing U.S. food and agriculture and codesign solutions.
“By bringing together leaders from across the food and ag value chain under one tent, we have the opportunity to collaborate on solutions for the future of U.S. and global agriculture,” said USFRA and Dairy Management, Inc. (DMI) Chair Marilyn Hershey. “Overcoming the barriers to adopting climate-smart practices that farmers and ranchers face is possible, but they cannot do it alone. Scientific research shows that the technology and practices needed to reduce agriculture’s carbon emissions exist, but investment from financial and food companies is needed for adoption at scale.”
Honor the Harvest provides an on-farm environment, relevant science-based information, and interactive learning experiences to facilitate networking, a better understanding of the realities of farming and ranching, brand engagement, connection with farmers and ranchers, and co-created pathways to action.
The Honor the Harvest Forum has been designed in the hopes that it will create and foster collaborative, innovative and creative conversations among leaders across the value chain. Its collective success depends on a robust exchange of ideas towards our shared future; an exchange that is fueled by a diversity of backgrounds, experiences, perspectives, and opinions.
The soybean industry was well-represented. Along with Krusemark, Mac Marshall, vice president of market intelligence with the United Soybean Board, and several other national soy leaders were present during the forum.
“There was a good presence about using farmers’ data to help companies understand the data,” Krusemark said. “I was encouraged by the conversations about developing partnerships and collaborating on how we can approach some of the big issues and challenges facing agriculture.”
Fertilizer management’s role in agriculture, along with carbon sequestration, were frequent topics of discussion.
“All the statistics show we’re 11% of the emissions,” Krusemark said, “so we can’t be looked at to solve the entire problem, but we’re willing doing to our part.”
During his remark, U.S. Ambassador Kip Tom highlighted soybeans as a global protein solution in feeding the world.
“That was a really good plug,” Krusemark said. “The whole event left me feeling energized. USFRA is a diverse set of collaborators and partners, and that’s exciting.”
U.S. Farmers & Ranchers in Action (USFRA) is a 501(c)(3) that comprises 44 organizations representing more than 1.6 million farmers and ranchers across the country. USFRA cultivates a shared vision of co-creating sustainable food systems and a belief that bold action is needed. USFRA drives a broad range of projects that advance meaningful action and results in the co-creation of solutions for sustainable food production, climate change, and economic sustainability. USFRA is serving as the secretariat for a Decade of Ag, a shared vision for the food and agriculture sector, now endorsed by 160 leaders. Learn more at www.usfarmersandranchers.org.