New Research from Farm Journal’s Trust In Food and American Public Media Explores U.S. Farmers’ Relationship with Water

Lenexa, Kan., (May 13, 2020) — Farmers across the country are primed to play an outsized role in the protection and conservation of the nation’s water resources, including supporting downstream communities and ecosystems, according to new research from Farm Journal’s Trust In Food initiative.

The report, U.S. Farmer Perspectives on Water documents insights from a national survey of more than 900 farmers representing nearly every state and major farming region. Farmers’ unique perspectives on water were analyzed to better identify their awareness, understanding, concern and action levels about water issues. This analysis enabled the creation of a communicator’s road map to help drive more effective and efficient engagement with farmers on water issues. The report can be downloaded at bit.ly/Farm-Water-TIF

Trust In Food collaborated on the report with The Water Main, a public impact initiative of American Public Media, which administered a similar survey to a nationally representative cross-section of the American public. That report and its findings can be viewed here: thewatermain.org/. Together, the farmer-facing and consumer-facing studies provide a deeper understanding of the shared values farmers and the public hold for water, as well as opportunities for closer collaboration across the agri-food value chain to conserve important natural resources.

“Farmers are linked to water in deeper ways than most individuals and businesses because their livelihoods and family legacies revolve around daily interactions with water,” said Mitch Rouda, President of Farm Journal’s Trust In Food. “Through their critical position in the environment, their high levels of motivation and excellent hydrologic knowledge, farmers can play a critical role as a solution to water issues. This report provides water communicators with a set of steps to more effectively and efficiently engage with farmers around water issues and activate them as solutions providers.”

Highlights from the research include:

  • About nine in 10 farmers say they act daily to protect and conserve water resources.
  • Approximately eight in 10 farmers only support political candidates who have a stance on water conservation and protection.
  • Farmers tend to have very high awareness and understanding of the water cycle and other ecosystem processes related to water.

Researchers found farmers might not fully recognize agriculture’s role in water quality issues but are keenly aware of the increasing weather variability facing the U.S. and subsequent impacts on water availability. The report builds a case for improved communication with farmers around water issues, based on their unique views and personal experiences.

To view the full report, go to: bit.ly/Farm-Water-TIF

 

About Farm Journal

Farm Journal is the nation’s leading business information and media company serving the agricultural market. Started 144 years ago with the preeminent Farm Journal magazine, the company serves the row crop, livestock, produce and retail sectors through branded websites, eNewsletters and phone apps; business magazines; live events including conferences, seminars and tradeshows; nationally broadcasted television and radio programs; a robust mobile text marketing business; and an array of data-driven paid information products. Farm Journal also is the majority shareholder of the online equipment marketplace, Machinery Pete LLC. In 2010, the company established the non-profit, public charity Farm Journal Foundation dedicated to sustaining agriculture’s ability to meet the vital needs of a growing population through education and empowerment. farmjournal.com

About Trust In Food

Trust In Food is a purpose-driven division of Farm Journal dedicated to rebuilding consumer confidence in the U.S. agricultural value chain by partnering with farmers and ranchers to accelerate conservation agriculture practice adoption and maintenance benefiting land, water, air and farm businesses. It advances this mission through data science, research, strategic communications and Farm Journal platform in collaboration with conservation organizations, government agencies, agribusinesses, food companies and retailers, and other food system stakeholders. trustinfood.com

About American Public Media

American Public Media is the largest station-based public radio organization in the U.S., combining multi-regional station operations, national content creation and distribution in one organization. With a portfolio that includes Live from Here with Chris Thile, BBC World Service, Marketplace® and the leading classical music programming in the nation, APM is one of the largest producers of public radio programming in the world. One thousand stations carry American Public Media’s 20-plus national programs. Its multi-regional station operations include 49 public radio stations and 42 translators in the Upper Midwest and California.

About The Water Main

The Water Main is a new type of public service growing out of public media, designed to catalyze conversation and action on the topic of water in the U.S. We collaborate with media organizations, within and outside APM, to develop and produce content that changes how Americans think, feel, and act on water. We convene dialogues and catalyze conversations that address thorny topics and create space for new types of thinking. We conduct research that provides key audience insights to us, and to others working on water issues, so that we can engage in the most effective way. And we work across the water community to build shared perspective and create the conditions needed for new thinking and action.

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