In his annual address to members during the American Farm Bureau Federation annual meeting in Honolulu, the group’s president, Bob Stallman, suggested that his audience may be considered part of the occupy movement because they occupy everything from farm fields to combines to saddles.
Stallman played on the now familiar occupy movement mantra, one percent versus 99 percent in terms of economic well being.
“We are the one percent that is producing food and fiber for the other 99 percent,” Stallman told Farm Bureau members, “and our success makes everything else in our great nation possible, including the pitching of tents and the shouting of protest slogans.”
Stallman pointed out the growing popularity of the so-called Cracker Barrel/Whole Foods divide; Cracker Barrel representing the Red State rural conservative viewpoint while Whole Foods stands for more Blue State, liberal values. The common factor, said Stallman, is food.
“Maybe, just maybe, we as the producers of food in this country can play a role to help unite instead of divide,” said Stallman. “It’s about time to put all else aside and for all of us to stand up as Americans first.”
Stallman was referring to the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance, which is engaging American consumers about food.
The American Farm Bureau annual meeting ends with the group’s voting delegates forming policy later this week.