“A lot of the consumers I think want to hear that feel good glossed over truth of no we don’t do this and no we don’t have this practice on our farm, but I think with the truth comes a lot of respect and a lot of understanding that we are being as transparent as possible, and I think that transparency is what builds that trust.”
Sawyer’s latest blog post followed a tour for moms and bloggers her family hosted on their farm. Telling consumers the truth about farm practices opens the door to understanding.
“The reactions always catch me off guard because I really think they are standing there going I can’t believe they just told me that, or I can’t believe that I’m standing in a field that is sprayed by pesticides,” she said. “But that initial reaction is then followed by a lot of head nodding and OK, I understand, and there is a lot of big eyes, but it gets really quiet, and that’s when I think the real learning process starts, is the oh , I’ve been taught this, but here’s the real truth.”
She says that in-person face-to-face interaction is the best way to promote agriculture’s story and gain consumers trust.
“Always being willing to talk about what you do, always being honest about what you do, and then sharing not only the truth but the why that follows it. That ability to have the conversation, to ask the questions, and then to provide a comprehensive explanation of why and how I think is really the best thing you can do because that’s when you walk away knowing you’ve really made a difference.”
Find the blog post online at www.kansasagland.com.