Lessons Learned from the Family Farming Tradition


It’s a tradition that no doubt will continue and keep agriculture going strong.

EVERYWHERE YOU LOOK in agriculture, there are stories of the strength of our country’s family farming traditions. Whether it’s a story of two daughters continuing their late father’s legacy on the family ranch or the lessons learned on a five-generation cattle and citrus operation, the impact of family and agriculture cannot be denied.

With 97 percent of the nation’s farms falling under the “family farm” designation, the concept of the family farm is a common theme in many farmers’ lives, myself included. Growing up as the fifth-generation on a cattle and citrus farm has taught me many important lessons, especially on the role of women in ag, and I’d like to share a few with you.

LESSONS FROM THE FAMILY FARM

1. All the important lessons in life are naturally built into agriculture. What I love most about being a member of a farming family is knowing the value of a dollar and learning how to work hard for what you want. My background in agriculture led me to where I am today because it taught me to value the land and to respect who feeds America. I learned growing up that a farmer is someone who America needs. My favorite saying will always be ”No Farmer, No Food.”

2. Women are important in agriculture. The strongest female role models I have had in my life are hands down my mother and grandmother. They have both worked for the family citrus and cattle operation and taught me that success is earned, not given to you. Whether it be a freeze, a disease, or any other sort of adversity, they knew how to handle it and they never let it get the better of them; that is a valuable lesson I carry with me.

3. Agriculture is tough, but it’s made easier by help. I would say to everyone that wants to pursue agriculture, get ready. You will have to overcome so much adversity, but America needs you. The most important thing to keep the family farming tradition going is to have the right people working for you. My family has been blessed to have managers that would do anything and everything to keep the tradition going.

Farming in the U.S. wouldn’t be where it is without family farmers, and particularly the contributions of the women in farming families. It’s a tradition that will continue to rise in importance in the future.

This column is sponsored by AgAmerica Lending.

BIO: Patrick Spinosa, a Relationship Manager for AgAmerica Lending, grew up on a fifth-generation Florida citrus and cattle operation. He believes that experience and knowledge to be invaluable as he helps secure the financial future of our nation’s farmers and ranchers. For more information about Patrick and the AgAmerica team, call 844-238-5312 or visit AgAmerica.com.