Authored by: Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch, Secretary of Agriculture and Rural Development and Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director Bruce Kettler.
These last few weeks have been a trying time for many. For our healthcare workers, for our grocery store employees, for our essential businesses, for our fellow Hoosiers and for our farmers, we’ve all been feeling overwhelmed.
The world hasn’t quite stopped spinning, but it’s certainly slowed down.
Uncertainty is not new for our farmers. From trade negotiations to inclement weather to fluctuating crop prices, they have faced the challenge head on. And now a critical time for agriculture, the planting season, is just around the bend.
Our team at ISDA is working tirelessly to ensure that our 94,000 Hoosier farmers have everything they need to be ready to plant their crop, just as they have each and every year. Through all the chaos, one thing is certain: our farmers will continue to devote their lives to supplying Hoosiers with healthy, safe and plentiful food options.
We have faced similar global crises in the past, like polio in 1916 and in 1917 with H1N1, or the Spanish Flu, and again in 1957 with H2N2. Now, all of these diseases are unique in their own way and no two are the same or should be treated the same. But this goes to show that worldwide, no matter the obstacle, we are able to overcome challenges.
We have witnessed a several positive things with our newfound time at home. With students turning to e-learning they have more time to play outside. Children can see what their parents really do for a living and how hard they work at their jobs as they observe them working from home. Families are gathering around recently dusted off dining room tables, enjoying homemade meals or local take out. We have seen fellow Hoosiers take time for themselves to go outside and walk or play with their kids. It’s a nice break from the former hustle and bustle of our daily lives.
Those in agriculture know there are no days off. There is always a sense of stress about what is happening on the farm and where the economy is headed. This constant sense of uncertainty makes agriculture one of the most stressful jobs. But, you remain resilient. You look ahead, global pandemic or not, you’re still going to order feed, seed and supplies. Widespread disease or not, you’re still going to prepare the planter and equipment. You rest assured that the world will keep on turning. Thank you for pushing on. We can all take a lesson from you.
In times of uncertainty people become anxious and worry about things out of anyone’s control – but isn’t every situation uncertain? Isn’t each new day a gift? We must forge on and look ahead to brighter days. For us, and hopefully you, we lean on our faith to keep us upright and facing the right direction.