What is agriculture literacy? Agriculture literacy is the true knowledge and understanding of agriculture. What does agriculture illiteracy mean? Agriculture illiteracy is the failure to understand how important agriculture is and how dependent we all are on it.

Most Americans know very little about agriculture and its value in their daily lives. Agriculture Illiteracy is one of the top twenty illiteracies in our country today. Many people are never informed of the importance that agriculture has and agriculture is entirely too important to be ignored. People need to be informed and need to understand how important agriculture is. If we informed more people about agriculture it would open them up to many of the following opportunities:

  • People could make healthier diet choices if they knew about agriculture and nutrition.
  •  They would be informed of many job opportunities: farm production, agribusiness management and marketing, agricultural research and engineering, food science, processing and retailing, banking, education, landscape architecture, urban planning, energy, etc.
  • They would more clearly understand where their food comes from and how it gets from the farm to the fork. 
  • It would also open them up to so many other opportunities.

If this agriculture illiteracy increases then we could see a decrease in farmers and in crop production in the future which will eventually lead to rising prices on products that rely on agriculture. That would be exceptionally devastating to our country. I believe that all students should be informed in some way about agriculture beginning in kindergarten and lasting until their senior year. People need to be informed about agriculture. One of my goals as an agriculture blogger and FFA member is to promote Ag Literacy and help decrease Ag Illiteracy by informing others about agriculture through this blog. I encourage you to tell others about agriculture and promote Ag Literacy. 

Every morning you wake up and begin your daily routine, the agriculture industry becomes part of your daily life. It is very interesting to me that no matter what you do the entirety of your day, the industry is always a part of your life. This brings one simple question to mind, where would you be without agriculture? While reading the rest of this post, keep that question in mind.

Many people don’t think about where their products come from when they are in the checkout line at the local supermarket, enjoying their favorite snack, or getting ready in the mornings. The agriculture industry is an amazing industry that we could improve by helping educate others about the responsibilities that agriculturalists have.

Each U.S farmer produces enough food to feed 155 people. It has been estimated that by the year 2050 our population will expand so much that global food production must increase by at least 70% to meet the world’s needs. This is challenging farmers to produce more food in the next 50 years than what has been produced in previous years.

The agriculture industry isn’t just a food providing industry, it also provides us with jobs, stimulates the economy, provides homes for humans as well as animals, and betters our environment. The industry employs 14% of the U.S workforce, or about 21 million people. It also employs more than six times as many workers than the U.S. automotive industry. This makes the agriculture industry a very big and influential industry. Without our cotton farmers, we wouldn’t have money; because 75% of every bill is made of cotton.

Now, back to our question: Where would you be without agriculture? Without agriculture you would be naked, lacking nutrients you need for survival, unprotected, and hungry. You wouldn’t have the clothes on your back, the towels in your bathroom or the sheets on your bed. You wouldn’t be able to enjoy your daily meals or have the protection of a sturdy, well-furnished home. There wouldn’t be vehicles, much less the gas to put in them. Also, you wouldn’t have the soap, shampoo, conditioner, or other toiletries to be clean. To summarize all this, without agriculture you would simply be naked and hungry. Next time you see a farmer, please thank them for all that they do to supply you with necessities for your daily life.