August 2022 FloridAgriculture eNewsletter
Kateland Raney has been immersed in the cattle industry since she was a young girl. Her parents owned and operated a livestock market for nearly 20 years and currently own a cow-calf operation. Raney grew up rodeoing and showing steers and beef heifers at the Polk County Fair.
In addition to her job as an agricultural loan closer at AgAmerica, Raney owns a commercial cow-calf operation and is the bookkeeper for her family’s beef business. She and her father run a direct to consumer beef business named Pine Lakes Beef Company. Together, they raise, and sell individual cuts to customers.
Although she was aware of the Florida Farm Bureau Federation, Raney credits her involvement in the Young Farmers & Ranchers program to one of her colleagues at AgAmerica. He invited Raney to a meeting and she was surprised at the amount of people she knew and how much she enjoyed it. Since that first meeting, Raney has involved herself in the Polk County YF&R group and currently serves as county co-chair and represents District 5 on the state leadership team.
“I love the relationships I get to build with other farmers and ranchers from not only across the state, but across the country,” said Raney. “It’s nice to be around people who share the same interest. Having the opportunity to go on farm tours and be introduced to other commodities that I don’t necessarily know, has really helped grow my knowledge of the industry. Every farm has story and it’s really cool to see first hand how time has shaped these operations into what they are now.”
Raney is proud of the growth she has seen in District 5 and the events they host for members. They have recently seen great success on their first district farm tour held earlier this year. With approximately 40 people in attendance, members from across the district toured farms in the area and heard from professionals in agriculture. YF&R members from the panhandle drove down for the tour as well. Despite rainy weather and many alterations to the day’s schedule, the group remained resilient and had a successful event. Raney said she is excited to make the tour a semiannual event.
“Farmers and Ranchers are resilient by nature. Overcoming hardships and rebounding quickly from setbacks, is a necessity to continue to provide for our families and the country”, said Raney. “The passion we share for the ag industry is greater than the struggles being faced at the time, and at the end of the day, all of the hard work will be worth it.”