Every October 12, we celebrate National Farmers Day to recognize the people who grow our food, flowers, and fiber. This day reminds us to take a moment to thank hard-working farmers. In the past, people often held big parties to celebrate National Farmers Day and the end of the growing season.
It’s true that farming looks different today than it did a hundred or even twenty years ago. Who are farmers today? And how do we celebrate them? National Farmers Day is the perfect time to explore the questions and thank modern farmers.
Who Are Farmers Today?
While you may not know many (or any) farmers personally, we can assure you they’re out there. Each year the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) conducts a census to give us the low down on the current state of US farms.
According to the 2017 census, there were over two million farms in the United States and over 1.75 million of these farms were owned by a family or individual. When you account for farms owned and managed by multiple people, you’ll find there were 3.4 million producers AKA farmers in 2017. And the average age of these people? Fifty-seven.
While it’s impossible to dive into all of the data, the takeaway is that farms are diverse! Over half of farms are small businesses or hobbies, with sales of less than $10K per year. But there are also plenty of large farms that span thousands of acres and produce thousands of pounds of food each year.
While these statistics give us a good idea of the number of farmers, it’s important to recognize that the term “producer” doesn’t cover a lot of the important people involved in farming. There are the entomologists (bug experts) controlling pests, soil scientists looking at nutrients and pH, and thousands of farmworkers planting seedlings and harvesting crops.
How to Celebrate Farmers
If there’s one day to thank and celebrate farmers, it’s October 12! While recognizing these people is a good first step, you may want to go above and beyond this simple acknowledgment.
One way to support farmers is to buy directly from them (or support a company that buys directly from farms). Rather than heading to the grocery store for some lettuce, check to see if there are local farmers in your community you can support. And when you’re searching for flowers or plants for delivery look for companies that help farmers receive fair compensations (like The Bouqs Co).
Another way to show your thanks is to write a thank you note to a farmer. While this may seem like a small gesture, farmers often produce food and flowers without many thanks. Look up a farm in your area and send a note their way.
One more way to celebrate farmers is to take a note from the past and hold a harvest celebration. Cook up some good food, invite some farmers over, and take a moment to reflect on another harvest. If you don’t know any farmers, the local USDA or NRCS office can connect you.
History of National Farmers Day
Historically, this day was known as Old Farmer’s Day. Back then, more people were involved in agriculture, so odds were good there were more than a few farmers in your community.
During this time non-farmers designated October 12 as a day to recognize and thank the people who helped sustain them. By this date, farmers had harvested many of their crops. This meant they could join in on the fun and celebrate another completed growing season.
While you may not personally know a farmer, October 12 is still a reminder to give thanks to the farmers around us. Without them, we wouldn’t have food on our plates and flowers on our tables.
How The Bouqs Co Values Farmers
We know that truly valuing farmers is more than just recognizing them one day a year. That’s why we work directly with farms like our co-founder’s farm in Ecuador every single day.
While you may not know it, many flower companies source their flowers from a warehouse rather than a farm. When that’s the case, there’s no telling who grew the flowers and forget about knowing how the farmers were compensated and treated. The Bouqs Co takes a different approach by directly sourcing our flowers from farms.
Why choose farm-direct flowers? There’s more than one reason.
By working directly with farms, we know exactly how much money farmers receive, and we can keep track of any issues the community is facing.
Knowing who is growing our flowers also allows us to keep tabs on the environment. Rather than working with farms that clear-cut rainforests and rely solely on red label pesticides to control pests, we choose to work with growers using sustainable practices. That means less wasted water, fewer harmful pesticides, and certifications like Rainforest Alliance Certified.
One more benefit of working directly with farmers? Better flowers! By cutting out the middleman, we offer flowers that are fresh and long-lasting. Direct sourcing also allows us to provide affordable flower delivery.
Our Flower Farmers
Now that you know all about the importance of farmers, let’s meet some of our partner farms!
Located on the coast of Ecuador, Magic Flowers grows tropical flowers such as ginger and heliconia. Owners Maria and Esteban Sanez began in 1990 by collecting plants from areas that were harmed by deforestation and bringing them back to their farm.
Today Magic Flowers provides three meals a day to over 100 employees and offers small loans to help workers with large expenses.
Dos Gringos grows flowers throughout Southern California and Central Mexico. While they grow a variety of blooms, their specialty is sunflowers. To date, they’ve sold 741 million flowers!
Dos Gringos focuses on beautiful flowers and ecological sustainability. All of their blooms and greens are hand-harvested at the perfect time. That means less waste and long-lasting blooms. They also compost about 10,000 pounds of green waste each month to further reduce waste.
Located in Colombia, Flores Funza grows more than 30 different types of flowers and greens. Some of their products include carnations, alstroemeria, roses, and lilies. Flores Funza employs about 3,000 people, many of whom are women.
Mellano & Company
Mellano & Company started in 1925 with five acres of flowers. Since then, they’ve expanded into 375 acres of production. They currently grow a wide variety of flowers in Oceanside, CA. Some of the flowers they grow include ranunculus, goldenrod, alstroemeria, delphinium, and eucalyptus.
They also manage The Flower Fields at Carlsbad Ranch; if you’re ever in the area, check out this 50-acre flower wonderland.
Rosamina is located in Colombia within the Bogotá savanna. The majority of their products are proteas, leucospermum, and leucadendron. If you haven’t heard of these plants, they’re woody shrubs and small trees that produce gorgeous blooms.
Rosamina currently employs about 120 people who help maintain the 125-acre property.
Cultivos del Norte
Agronomist Christian Fog founded Cultivos del Norte in 1993. Today, this farm produces roses and chrysanthemums on about 20 acres in Tocancipá, Colombia.
Cultivos del Norte takes environmental sustainability seriously. They compost their green waste and use biological pest control methods rather than pesticides.Shop All