ANF Game Day Underscores Why 'America Needs Farmers' to Maintain Food Choices PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Laurie Johns   
Tuesday, 11 October 2011 13:36

Oct. 15 UI ANF Game Day Features First-Ever ‘Card Stunt’ and Former Hawkeye/NFL Players

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA – October 10, 2011 – Iowa is insulated against the worst of the nation’s economic woes, thanks to the strength and influence of agriculture, according to a recent survey by Creighton University economists.  “Farming has contributed 5,000 manufacturing jobs in this state over the past year and that’s just one more reason why we want to share the good news of today’s agriculture,” says Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF) President Craig Lang.

As part of the ANF partnership announced in August between the Iowa Farm Bureau and the University of Iowa Athletics Department, the football game this Saturday (Oct. 15) at historic Kinnick Stadium between the Iowa Hawkeyes and the Northwestern Wildcats has been designated “ANF Day at Kinnick.” The game, to be televised live on the Big Ten Network (BTN) at 6 p.m. CT, will feature a host of activities celebrating why America Needs Farmers, including a pre-game autograph session with former Hawkeye stars Jared DeVries, Tim Dwight, Marv Cook, Ed Podolak and Gary Dolphin at the Legend’s Tent in the Krause Family Plaza located immediately south of the stadium.

Other activities include Tailgate Toss with ANF prizes and the UI’s first stadium ‘card stunt’, where all fans in the four grandstands of Kinnick Stadium will, on cue, hold them up and deliver two designs and messages for the enjoyment of the 70,000 people in the stadium and the national television audience watching on BTN.

ANF was first launched in 1985 during the height of the Farm Crisis by legendary Hawkeye coach Hayden Fry, who wanted to show an increasingly urban nation why agriculture matters.  “Farming has seen many innovations since then, which bring more food and energy choices and job opportunities to a new generation,” says Lang, a fifth-generation Brooklyn, Iowa dairy farmer. “Today’s farming isn’t just about feeding people; it’s about innovation in renewable energy, medicine, building materials, diagnostic tools, and more which combine what we know with what we grow.”

Iowa farmers lead the nation in what they grow.  Just this week, the world celebrates the efficiency and sustainability of today’s farmers through the 25th anniversary of the World Food Prize honoring another Iowa farmer, Norman Borlaug. “In less than a generation, the world’s population will need 100 percent more food than we are growing today on a finite amount of productive land.  IFBF is always looking for ways to show consumers how we plan to do that, while maintaining the integrity of the land, water, and rural communities where our farmers raise their own children,” said Lang.

Iowa farmers realize with an increasing number of consumers curious about innovations in farming and food production, they need to find ways to make farming more transparent.  Larry Sailer, a Hardin County Farm Bureau member who farms near Iowa Falls, says, “Anything you can do to start a conversation with consumers about food and agriculture is good. We want to know what questions they have about what we do and why we do it. And in a high profile event, like an Iowa Hawkeye football game, it’s literally a new way to show them this whole new playing field of modern agriculture.”

For more information about the Iowa Farm Bureau/U of I ANF partnership and additional ANF Game Day activities or merchandise, click on www.americaneedsfarmers.org.

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