Grassroots Gathering to Keep Agriculture Strong

February 2, 2018

Hundreds of Florida Farm Bureau members from across the state convened at the state Capitol earlier this week to meet with legislators during Florida Farm Bureau’s annual Legislative Days in Tallahassee, Jan. 29-30.

The state’s largest general agricultural organization and its members spent a full day at the state Capitol visiting with lawmakers to discuss key policy issues that affect agriculture.

Top issues included helping to secure additional funding for the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ Fresh From Florida marketing program and the Rural and Family Lands Program. Additional funding for the University of Florida Institute for Food and Agricultural Sciences’ research projects and 4-H programs were also a top priority.

“We are so appreciative of our farm families who take time away from their operations to speak up for agriculture and their local communities,” said Florida Farm Bureau President John Hoblick. “Our Legislative Days give farmers and ranchers the platform to advocate for their way of life for today and for the next generation.”

The two-day legislative event kicked off with a reception at the organization’s office in Tallahassee where members mingled with legislators and government officials. A briefing breakfast followed on Jan. 30 at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center. Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam welcomed members and detailed the importance of keeping agriculture strong in Florida.

In addition to support for recovery from Hurricane Irma, Farm Bureau members called for a restoration of funding for the department’s Fresh From Florida and Rural and Family Lands Protection programs.

The annual “Taste of Florida Agriculture” public event at the Capitol Courtyard concluded the day where more than 1,000 guests attended.  Visitors were able to sample locally grown Florida commodities, meet farmers and ranchers and learn more about the importance of an economic sector that contributes $132 billion to the state’s economy.

Keynote speakers at the reception included Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam Putnam and Florida Farm Bureau President John Hoblick.

The reception is a joint partnership between Florida Farm Bureau and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.