Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Talking Agriculture with Mike Rowe

Last weekend Stacy and I had the privilege of meeting with Mike Rowe.  If you haven't heard of Mike you've probably been living under a rock for the past six or seven years.  He's practically become the face of the Discovery Channel with his hit show Dirty Jobs and along the way he's also become the face of the American worker. 

Through his experiences doing Dirty Jobs across the country he's come to realize and appreciate that everything we have is either grown or mined from the earth.  Along with that his appreciation for the people that do that work has grown.

Out of that the mikeroweWORKS.com website was born.  It's a site dedicated to educating people about the importance of skilled trade workers, including farmers and ranchers.  Through that Mike happened to find my youtube video where I dumped a bottle of Yellow Tail wine on the frozen ground to tell people that they had made a donation to the world's wealthiest animal rights group, the Humane Society of the United States. 

Our work with the Farm American project also caught Mike's eye and they featured a blog post of mine about the program on their site.  When it turned out that we were all going to be in Atlanta at the American Farm Bureau Federation meeting we were able to finally meet in person. 

Mike and his team were very interested to hear about our efforts to advocate for agriculture, including our work with the Farm American program.  Mike gets a lot of requests to be spokesman.  In fact he was the most sought after spokesman in the world in 2010.  His name has been thrown around many times in the world of agriculture as someone that would be a great spokesman for our industry.  But Mike can wisely see that we don't need a single spokesman, we need lots and lots of advocates for agriculture.  Mike isn't an expert in food production, not the way that farmers and ranchers are.  So while he is certainly willing to help share the story, ultimately we are the ones that need to be doing it. 

Mike also highlighted the efforts of the Farm American program as a great way for farming and ranching families to spread their message.  He was impressed by the unselfish efforts of Furniture Row to start the program because it was the right thing to do, not as a way to pay for a race team.  When you explain to someone all of the things we could do with Farm American to tell the story of agriculture it starts sounding too good to be true.  One look at the race car proves the intentions of Furniture Row though.  There's not a single mention of Furniture Row on the car.  That really caught the attention of Mike as it has with so many others. 

We are really looking forward to a continued partnership with Mike and his team at mikeroweWORKS.com to tell the story of agriculture.  Mike is a genuine guy who was a pleasure to meet and visit with.  He's certainly a friend of every hard working American and as he put it, a big fan of "chewing and swallowing".  It was a real pleasure to spend a few hours "chewing and swallowing" with him last week. 

You've heard me telling you to be an advocate for agriculture, now hear it from Mike Rowe.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Greetings from Southern California :-)

I added myself to follow your blog. You are more than welcome to visit mine and become a follower if you want to.

God Bless You, ~Ron