We recently asked Nancy Grossi, one of the most, if not the most, active members of Progressive Dairyman’s Proud to Dairy social media network to write a blog for us on the importance of “agvocacy.” Nancy, thank you so much for your contributions “agvocating” on behalf of the dairy industry. If you would like to follow Nancy’s blog, please visit http://www.thewifeofadairyman.blogspot.com/.
Letter from Nancy:
We are a dairy and natural beef ranching family from Northern California. My husband, Dominic is a 4th generation rancher. From the time he was five, he knew he wanted to continue on with his family’s legacy of dairy farming. After attending Cal Poly in San Luis Obispo, he came back to the ranch and began running the ranch, side by side, with his father. We have a herd of 200+ Holstein milking cows and raise 45-60 pairs of Hereford Angus cross natural beef on our 450 acre ranch.
Not only does Dominic run the dairy, he sits on many boards of different agriculture organizations. He is the current President of Marin County Farm Bureau, President of the North Bay Dairy Herd Improvement Association, sits on the MALT (Marin Agriculture Land Trust) board, and Sonoma-Marin Fair board, just to name a few. Being active in all of these organizations along with having a ranch of our own, gives us first- hand knowledge of what is going on in the agriculture industry.
Growing up in the country myself, my parents raising their own beef on five acres of land to feed our family and growing at least a ½ acre of vegetables every year, makes me no stranger to agriculture. But being married to Dominic for almost seven years now, and becoming involved with the family dairy and beef ranch, has really opened my eyes to how much the agriculture industry is being barraged on a daily basis by people and activist organizations, such as HSUS and others that are trying to discontinue production agriculture in this country.
It was time for me to stand up and do my part, even though it’s a small part, to reach out to the consumer, the community and as many people as I can reach to share my story of agriculture. I believe that sharing my account of what it’s like to live and work, day to day, on a working dairy and natural beef ranch is extremely important. I also believe, the information I make available, through my blog (The Wife of a Dairyman), Facebook and Twitter will give the public a better understanding and a connection with true agriculture.
As ranchers, Dominic and I feel it’s important that the public realize that most all farmers and ranchers care. We care about the environment. We care about animal welfare and that every animal is treated with the utmost compassion, care and kindness. We care about the quality of our products. We have a strong sense of responsibility to preserve our farm and community for future generations.
I feel it’s so important and encourage anyone who is in the agriculture industry to ‘Be Proud to Ag’, to be an Advocate. Advocacy is about action, big or small. Share your personal story at any given opportunity you can. I truly believe that the public wants to connect with their farmer and rancher. They want to know who is growing and producing their food and how it gets from the farm to their plate and they want to feel good about it.