Senator Dan Brown’s Legislative Column

brownAgriculture is the No. 1 industry in our state. So it was no surprise when the governor declared March 18-24 National Agriculture Week in the state of Missouri.

Missouri contains more than 28 million acres of farmland, and agriculture contributes $88.4 billion to our state’s economy while employing nearly 400,000 people. The day-to-day hard work from these dedicated farmers and ranchers truly is the backbone of our state’s economy.

Our state is home to nearly 100,000 farms, 97 percent of which are family owned and operated. Farming is not just a way of life it is often times a deeply rooted family tradition. Generation after generation grow up working in the fields. This is evident through the impact agriculture programs like Missouri FFA and 4-H have on our children. These programs touch the lives of more than 125,000 young men and women. Younger generations are also pursuing other agriculture experiences through farmers’ markets, agritourism venues, wineries and the Missouri State Fair.

Missouri farmers and ranchers play a vital role in providing food for not just our country but the entire world. Our state’s farmers and ranchers consistently rank in the top 10 nationally in agriculture commodities including soybeans, beef cows, corn, broiler chickens, hogs, goats, turkey, rice cotton and timber products. Agriculture in Missouri is thriving, and it is because of the hard work of our state’s farmers and ranchers.

As always, I encourage my constituents to contact me throughout the year with comments, questions or suggestions by calling my office at (573) 751-5713. To find more information about the bills I sponsor, visit Thank you for reading this and for your participation in state government.