Two years ago, 15 farmer volunteers from five states set out on a mission: to create conversations about food and farming with Americans disconnected from the farm. Their goal wasn’t to tell people what they should or shouldn’t be eating, but rather to share stories in an effort to be transparent and build trust. And there was something else unique about these conversations: they were between the women who buy food and the women who help grow it.
A partnership between the soy checkoff and the National Corn Growers Association, the CommonGround program has grown to include more than 65 volunteer farmers in 16 states. But perhaps even more impressive is that through the efforts of the volunteers, they have reached millions of consumers with firsthand information about today’s agriculture.
“So often the story of agriculture told in the media or through online outlets does not include the voice of the farmers who are actually raising the food,” said CommonGround Nebraska volunteer Joan Ruskamp. “Through CommonGround, I can use two of my passions – motherhood and farming – to resonate with other moms who are just trying to make smart food choices for their families.”
This year, CommonGround volunteers have held nearly 100 events, wrote blog posts and spoke with key members of the media from the Food Network, Martha Stewart Magazine and Better Homes and Gardens, and more And their hard work is paying off in a big way. CommonGround is growing in popularity as a resource that consumers can turn to for information about where their food comes from.
Take a look at that information for yourself at www.FindOurCommonGround.com.