By Gary Joiner
TFB Radio Network Manager
In a state that is becoming increasingly urban, rural Texas needs a strong voice. That voice is Texas Farm Bureau (TFB).
Organized in 1933, TFB is the largest general farm and ranch organization in the state. With nearly 527,000 member-families, it is the voice of Texas Agriculture.
Farm Bureau is made up of individuals who collectively work together to ensure agriculture stays strong and the rural way of life remains viable. Members join the organization at one of the 206 county Farm Bureaus located across the state.
TFB is people who share the same concerns and are unafraid to tackle issues outside the farm gate that affect their operations and livelihoods. State and federal policies are developed at the grassroots level and considered by voting delegates at an annual meeting.
“There are 206 Farm Bureaus located across Texas, helping farmers with research, water conservation, property rights, wildlife management and more.”
TFB believes private property rights are worth fighting for, water is worth conserving, and that government should efficiently and effectively use hard-earned tax dollars.
TFB is also working for eminent domain reform in Texas, federal regulatory reform, USFWS–Endangered Species Act implementation, international agricultural trade, implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill, ag use valuation on agricultural property and the sales tax exemption for agricultural use, among others.
TFB has a rich history of promoting hunting and fishing. It supports research, law enforcement, and educational activities designed to improve hunting and fishing for this generation and future generations.
In addition to advocacy, TFB communications add volume to the organization’s voice. Outlets include publications, video, radio, and social media. Stories on wildlife management on private land in Texas are frequently produced.
The Texas Farm Bureau Radio Network, the number one and most listened-to agricultural news radio network in the state, regularly features comments from Texas Dove Hunters Association co-founder Bob Thornton on the network’s Texas Wildlife Radio Show. The monthly TFB printed publication Texas Agriculture and the electronic Texas Agriculture Daily also use Thornton’s comments in articles pertaining to dove hunting, the Banded Bird Challenge and reports from the field.
TFB regularly works with state and federal agencies that oversee rules and regulations for hunting and fishing.
Farmers and ranchers are the people who grow food and fiber so that our great nation always remains food-secure.
TFB is a proud supporter of youth. It hosts the Youth Leadership Conference every summer and the Free Enterprise Speech contest in December. And it is committed to helping students fulfill their dreams. Between the state and county Farm Bureaus, more than $519,000 in scholarships are awarded to high school seniors, enrolled college students and technical college students.
TFB believes that agriculture should be included in schools, so its educational exhibits—mobile learning barns, Planting the Seed program, and more—travel to classrooms across the state. Students get to meet farmers at Ag Days or virtually “meet” them through videos showcasing their diverse farms and ranches. TFB also offers grants to schools that would like to start a garden, aquaponics program, or other agriculture-related activities.
A strong Texas demands strong leaders. Ones who drive innovation, spark dialogue, inspire growth, and make an impact beyond the fencerow. Farmers and ranchers can develop their skills through one of TFB’s many leadership programs.
And nothing is better than family. Texas Farm Bureau is a big one. It’s a family that works to take care of each other every day by saving time and money with an array of benefits. In 2018, TFB members saved more than $7.2 million, thanks to its member benefits. From health solutions to entertainment, Texas Farm Bureau is here for its members.
TFB is sowing the seeds of the future, and the legacy of Texas agriculture is on our hands. Join us today and be part of the Voice of Texas Agriculture.
For more information, visit www.texasfarmbureau.org.