Some might say it’s all about the horsepower, but today, it’s the power of people that really propels modern agriculture. While farming has historically been viewed as a male-dominated field, the fact is more women are playing a key role in agriculture across the USA today. According to the most recent USDA Agricultural Census, in 2012, approximately 969,672 females in the United States, are running more than 288,264 farms across the country, accounting for about $12.9 billion in agricultural product sales.
Recognizing the continued value that women contribute to the industry, a local group of young professionals fostered that growth of passionate women in agriculture as the Young Professionals in Agriculture (YPIA) hosted USDA Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden this past Tuesday. During her visit to Iowa, Deputy Secretary Harden spoke about the challenges she faced as a Georgia farmer’s daughter helping to shape farm policy on Capitol Hill at a time when there were very few females in her industry. She also shared advice on how to become a better leader for the next generation of agriculturalists, especially for the young women that look up to those professionals in the group.
Iowa Corn supports the Young Professionals in Agriculture (YPIA) organization, and a number of our own team members proudly took part in the event. For more information about YPIA, visit http://youngprofessionalsinag.org/
(Pictured left to right) Iowa Corn staff members Amanda DeJong, Brooke Kerns, Deputy Secretary Harden, Iowa Corn staffer Elizabeth Burns-Thompson, and Pam Johnson, at-large director of the Iowa Corn Promotion Board.