Dear Texas Consumers,

As farmers and ranchers, we have a passion for growing things. We take enormous pride in growing the necessities of life—not only the food that nurtures us, but the fiber that protects us from the sun, cold, wind and rain.

We wonder why many hold our profession in disregard. We see and hear it every day on the Internet, television and newspapers—industrial agriculture, factory farming, inhumane treatment of livestock—words that paint us as uncaring and unfeeling.

Maybe that’s our fault. We’d rather tend to our crops and livestock than talk. But we’re making progress. You can find farmers and ranchers on social media where we share what’s happening on our farms. Come take a look.

We know we need to talk with you—instead of at you—because we know you have very real concerns about the food you provide your families. Because we grow that food, we need to have a conversation. And we want you to know a few of the things we feel passionately about…

1. We’re family farmers. We’re not some faceless company that grows your food with reckless disregard for anything but profit. Oftentimes, our families have farmed the same land for generations. And we hope our children and grandchildren choose this way of life as well.

2. The environment is important. We can’t farm without the precious gifts of land and water. We must farm with care and caution, and the practices we use must be sustainable—so the land will provide indefinitely and the water will be safe for our families and yours.

3. Food is all about choices. Some consumers choose organic. Others prefer food that is locally grown. Still others would rather buy their food off the grocery store shelves. That’s all okay. There’s a farmer out there who is committed to ensuring your choice is fulfilled in a safe and responsible manner. After all, our families eat the same food.

4. Inhumane treatment of livestock is not an option. We assure you our livestock are humanely treated, are well fed and watered and are looked after when sick. Proper care and nutrition—besides being the right thing to do—keep our livestock productive. Our income—and your choices at the meat counter—depend on it.

5. Farming is our job. We take our job seriously. A profitable farm ensures our children are well fed, clothed and enjoy the same opportunities as their friends in town.

Hear from others farmers and ranchers in this video. We care, and we want to connect with you.

We know you have a number of concerns about the food you eat. And we want you to know that we share those concerns. Because we have families, too.

Can we keep this conversation going? Talk with us in the comments or join the conversation on Facebook and Twitter.


Texas farmers