The industry continues to push through the pandemic, showing its strengths during adversity. Tillamook County Creamery Association (TCCA) is recognizing that this year’s harvest was one of the more difficult ones for many American Farmers and is stepping up to help. Throughout the month of September, 10 percent of sales, up to $1.6 million, from Tillamook products will go toward grants that will save farms and farmland, provide financial relief directly to farmers, and support sound farming practices. The dairy giant is tapping the star power of Eva Longoria to help propel its latest campaign.
“At Tillamook, our purpose is to nourish lives in a growing world, and we want to support all farmers who share that mission,” said Patrick Criteser, TCCA President and CEO. “We are launching the Tillamook All For Farmers campaign and grant program by partnering with American Farmland Trust (AFT) and farmworker advocate, Eva Longoria, to raise awareness and dollars to help farmers survive a multi-year downturn and thrive in the future."
Award-winning actor, producer, director, and activist, Longoria is lending her star power and passion for American agriculture and the farmworker community to the new campaign. According to the press release, Longoria is a longtime advocate for farmers and farmworkers and is committed to doing her part to address the challenges facing agriculture today.
“I am thrilled to join forces with Tillamook and American Farmland Trust to support this new initiative and continue to advocate on behalf of farmers and farmworkers,” said Longoria. “While the COVID-19 pandemic has brought to light the fact that farmers and farmworkers are now ‘essential,’ they have always been essential to our food supply and they deserve our continued support and protection.”
AFT is a not-for-profit national organization with a mission to protect farmland, promote sound farming practices, and keep farmers on the land. About half of the Tillamook All For Farmers Grants will go to preserve land on at-risk farms.
As stated in the release, the remainder of the funds will be used to award grants directly to farmers to help them access land that is ready for farming, improve land security, enhance farm viability, and/or adopt new farming practices.
“An average 2,000 acres of rich farmland is being lost each day to commercial development,” said Beth C. Sauerhaft, PhD, Vice President, Programs, American Farmland Trust. “An important step in supporting farmers and preserving the farming way of life in America is to protect the land itself. The financial commitment from TCCA will help to do just that and so much more.”
Tillamook will announce its total donation to AFT on October 12, National Farmers’ Day. On the same day, AFT will open the grant application to farmer applicants.
“The unpredictability of the pandemic and the complexities of the supply chain are squeezing the economics for many producers and putting many multi-generational farms at risk. This year’s unique challenges have accelerated and intensified the hardships that many farmers across the country were already facing,” said Criteser. “Our business model enables responsible growth, sustains the farming way of life for our owners, and allows us to give back with initiatives like All For Farmers.”
For more information on this new initiative, click here for the full press release.
As we continue to build and bolster the industry, keep checking back to Deli Market News for the latest.