Thursday, March 12, 2009

Generation Y in Ag

Local ranchers work on their image
Feeling misunderstood, cattlemen come together to educate the public
By Sarah Hubbart

Jolene Moxon grew up in a ranching family. Her grandparents ran cattle in Trinity County, and her father worked in the dairy industry in Arcata. She remembers showing cattle at the Humboldt County Fair, proudly sporting her blue-and-gold Future Farmers of America jacket as she led her steer around the woodchip-filled ring.

Her family and other ranchers and dairy farmers she knew all treated their animals humanely, so she was dismayed last year when a now-infamous video, surreptitiously filmed by animal-rights activists, showed horrific animal cruelty at a Chino slaughterhouse. Images of an injured cow being relentlessly pushed by a forklift were seared into her mind—as well as the minds of millions of Americans who saw them.

Moxon is now part of a new generation of ranchers who are working to overcome the animal-cruelty charges lobbed at the industry since the video appeared.

“People need to realize that was one example, not the entire group. Now the entire business is suffering for it,” she said, shaking her head solemnly. Read More

The excitement that exists in college students preparing to return to production agriculture is second to none. They are energized to contribute to the industry they love. Their excitement is contagious. If you ever need your batteries recharged, just spend some time with the younger people in agriculture.

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