MARS HILL, Maine — American Agri-Women, the nation’s largest coalition of farm, ranch and agri-business women, is on the final leg of its Drive Across America. Volunteers have driven a specially wrapped “farm” pickup truck more than 15,000 miles so far on its five-month long education and advocacy tour as part of its 40th anniversary celebration.
The Drive is now heading to Florida and then will drive along the East Coast, finally parking in Portland, Maine, for AAW’s 2015 annual convention in early November. Throughout the Drive, AAW’s more than 50 affiliates have hosted educational, advocacy and member networking events. The drivers have often stayed in members’ homes and been treated to home-cooked meals, barbecues and harvest dinners in the field. The group has met with elected officials, policy makers, ag leaders, consumers, students and many others.
“This has been a tremendous opportunity for our organization to showcase agriculture. We’ve seen the vast power of American agriculture, from my own potato fields in Maine to the heartland’s corn, wheat and soybean fields and livestock pastures to the orchards, vineyards and vegetable fields of the Western states and now back through the fertile fields of the South,” says President Sue McCrum. “We’re not only celebrating our 40th anniversary, but laying the groundwork for more important work ahead. We are proud to be a force for truth for American agriculture.”
AAW has been sponsored by some of the nation’s leading food and agribusiness organization, including:
- McCain Foods USA processes potatoes from family farmers throughout North America.
- Bayer CropScience is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, agriculture and high-tech materials. A stop will be held on June 12 at Bayer’s Bee Care Center in North Carolina.
- Penobscot McCrum is a vertically integrated company that specializes in every aspect of potatoes.
- The Renewable Fuels Assn. is the authoritative voice of the U.S. ethanol industry.
- Syngenta is one of the world’s leading companies with more than 28,000 employees in more than 90 countries dedicated to this purpose: Bringing plant potential to life.
- CCI Marketing is a leading agricultural public relations and marketing firm and supports AAW with its AgPR news service.
- CoBank is a member of the Farm Credit System, a nationwide network supporting the borrowing needs of U.S. agriculture and the nation’s rural economy.
- Valent USA develops and markets products that protect agricultural crops, enhance crop yields, improve food quality, beautify the environment and safeguard public health.
- Ohio Corn & Wheat is a market development, education and political advocacy group for the state’s corn and wheat farmers.
- Freestyle Productions is a full-service event production company that produces dynamic videos, webcasts, events and more.
- Sunrise Agricultural Associates is global network of agricultural, legal and educational professionals.
Agri-Pulse Communications is media partner for the Drive. Agri-Pulse is a diversified communications firm that is a trusted farm and rural policy resource in Washington, D.C.
AAW’s more than 50 state and commodity affiliates are also supporting the campaign through events, financial support and more.
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