Farmers are artists in their own right, and like the historical museums keeping fine art alive, the farming community deserves protection. Tillamook County Creamery Association (TCCA) knows this well, and ventures to improve the lives of farmers with everything it does. One of its most concentrated efforts, which kicked off for the second year this September, is the All for Farmers program, which supports farmers facing financial hardship across the country.
“As a farmer-owned co-op, we recognize it takes all types of farms—from small to large and from coast to coast—for the United States food system to thrive at its fullest,” said Sue Kapllani, Vice President of Brand Marketing. “Last year, at the height of the pandemic, we created the All For Farmers initiative as part of our commitment to do right by the future of farming. In 2020, we raised $1.6 million for American Farmland Trust (AFT) and its Brighter Future Fund grant program, which ultimately awarded more than 130 grants to under-represented farmers in 25 states.”
Not only is TCCA farmer-owned, but it is led by its farmers themselves and is a Certified B Corp. With this unique position in the food industry, Sue explained that TCCA is dedicated to being a force of good in the world.
“TCCA’s farmer-owners believe that caring for cows and farms, for people and products, and for the community and the environment is not just about smart business, but also about staying true to our values. As such, TCCA is proud that the 2020 All For Farmers initiative and subsequent donation allowed for AFT to create the Brighter Future Fund grant program,” Sue continued.
The American Farmland Trust Brighter Future Fund awarded 130 grants to farmers in 25 states as a result of the 2020 program. According to Sue, ninety-six percent of the grant recipients come from underrepresented populations in the farming community, including female, non-binary, LGBTQ+, beginning farmers, and farmers of color.
“The 2021 campaign will enable American Farmland Trust to continue the Brighter Future Fund for at least two more years with a goal of raising $1 million for at least 150 grants per year to enhance viability of their farms, provide access to land, and increase resilience among the farming community,” Sue added.
To amplify the All For Farmers effort, TCCA has partnered with Food52, an award-winning kitchen and home brand and member of the All For Farmers Coalition. Now through the end of the year, consumers nationwide can shop the All For Farmers Market, a curated collection on Food52.com. The market features some of Food52’s most popular kitchen items, which are perfect for holiday gifting.
“Sharing our rallying cry with Food52’s community of highly engaged individuals that live by the value of ‘eating thoughtfully’ just made sense,” said Sue. “At least 10 percent of the proceeds from all Market items will go directly to AFT, including 100 percent of proceeds from the Tillamook Whole Shebang offering, which includes a gift spread of Cheddar cheese curds and award-winning, long-aged vintage Cheddars. You’ll also find great recipes for fall and the holidays featuring a variety of Tillamook® award-winning Cheddars.”
Holiday demand is surging, meaning this is one strategy sure to bring attention to the cause from shoppers nationwide.
As Tillamook County Creamery Association continues its efforts to support farmers, we at Deli Market News will keep you informed of the latest.