Women’s group speaks effectively on behalf of the busy farmer

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Members of California Women for Agriculture gathered at their annual convention in 2020, just before the COVID-19 pandemic struck.

In 1975, a group of women concerned about the challenges of California agriculture came together to “speak out for the busy farmer” and educate consumers and lawmakers on agricultural issues. Today, the CWA has grown into one of the largest all-volunteer advocacy groups in the country, made up of a diverse group of bankers, lawyers, accountants, marketers and consumers – as well as farmers and ranchers.

Rose Tryon, a fifth-generation breeder entering her second year as President of the CWA, said it was vitally important that the agriculture industry continue to make education and advocacy efforts, and last year added a digital campaign to its usual lobbying efforts.

“Last year we launched a digital campaign called Faces of Ag, where our communications team highlighted members who work in different facets of the industry,” she said. “We wanted to emphasize (to lawmakers) how important agriculture is to the state’s economy, how many jobs are involved and how many women and minorities are involved in agriculture and to link on the how their decisions affect women and minority populations. general. Our members are as diverse as the crops we grow.

Because of the importance of educating policy makers on the many issues affecting agriculture and ranching in California, the farm credit associations serving California have sponsored CWA for over 20 years. Farm credit institutions support US institutions AgCredit, CoBank, Colusa-Glenn Farm Credit, Farm Credit West, and Fresno Madera Farm Credit – all of which are part of the National Farm Credit System, the largest provider of credit to US agriculture .

“About half of the $ 1 million that Farm Credit makes to nonprofits each year is used to preserve agriculture and raise awareness of the importance of agriculture in California,” said Timothy Elrod, president and chief executive officer. the management of Colusa-Glenn Farm Credit. “CWA’s 1,300 members do a great job educating decision-makers and advocating for policies that keep our state’s agriculture industry competitive and viable. We believe that our contribution of $ 10,000 per year to support this great organization is an investment in the future of agriculture.

Tryon said Credit Agricole’s support over the years has been essential in helping the organization grow.

“We cannot continue to advocate without our sponsors, and we are very grateful for the support of Farm Credit. They have been an absolutely wonderful sponsor, and we couldn’t continue without them, ”she said.

The organization is made up of 21 local chapters that focus on promoting agriculture at the local level and providing scholarships to students majoring in agriculture-related majors. Tryon said his local in the Chico area, for example, is raising funds to lend to students who cannot afford to purchase an animal for FFA or 4H competitions. A student then raises the animal, shows it and repays the loan when she sells it after the competition.

This kind of commitment to the future of farming is another reason Farm Credit continues to sponsor CWA, noted Keith Hesterberg, President and CEO of Fresno Madera Farm Credit.

“In our region, CWA partners with Ag One to host the Ag Boosters BBQ each year, which raises funds to support students and agricultural programs in Fresno State,” Hesterberg said. “Crédit Agricole is proud to directly sponsor this program, which helps ensure that we have well-trained agricultural leaders in the future.”

About agricultural credit

American AgCredit, CoBank, Colusa-Glenn Farm Credit, Farm Credit West, and Fresno Madera Farm Credit are cooperative-owned lending institutions that provide agriculture and rural communities with a reliable source of credit. For more than 100 years, the agricultural credit system has specialized in financing farmers, ranchers, farmer-owned cooperatives, rural utilities and agribusinesses. Crédit Agricole offers a wide range of loan products and financial services, including long-term home loans, operating lines of credit, equipment and facility loans, cash management services and appraisal and rental… everything a “growing” business needs. For more information visit www.farmcreditalliance.com.

About California Women for Agriculture

The mission of the CWA is to promote and develop the interest of Californian women involved or interested in agriculture and to promote a strong agriculture industry in California. CWA’s efforts are guided by five main goals: speaking on behalf of agriculture in a smart, informative, direct and honest manner; keep CWA members informed of legislative activities relating to agriculture; to join forces when the need arises to deal with agricultural problems and challenges; improve the public image of farmers and develop relationships with consumers, educators, and government and business leaders in communities across the state.

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