January 21, 2022
When a snowflake shows up big and bold on the weather station for North Carolina, it’s a big deal for this southern state. It also means a few things.
It typically means milk and bread fly off the shelves of the grocery store. Schools and businesses close. Folks make sure generators are on standby, and kids (and many adults) wait anxiously for white to fall from the sky.
It also means, farmers won’t be shutting down operations for a snowflake. They can’t. Animals still need to be fed, barns kept warm, ice in water troughs broken, water lines checked… the list is long. Winter weather means more work for farmers.
And for the children of farmers and others in agriculture, it can mean less time with mom or dad in the snow.
You see, in order for milk, bread and other food to fly back on the shelves, agriculture can’t stop. For farm families, a snowflake on the weather station means something a little different.
It means chores before sledding, livestock before snowmen, water troughs before hot chocolate. Snow is still magical and loads of fun for farm families, but it does look different. There is a level of sacrifice from both the farmer and the farmer’s family so that we don’t have to sacrifice our food supply.
So, to our farmers: as the snow begins to fall, we know it will mean extra work for you and we thank you. We know it will mean impatient kiddos waiting for you to finish your work so you can join them to play. We know it will mean sacrificing some of that idealistic snow day. But between the snow-covered barns, checking waterlines and ensuring the animals are warm, we hope it also means building a snowman and throwing a snowball. We hope it means laugher and hot chocolate after using a tractor to pull a sled.
Snow means nothing when it comes to work on the farm because the work must continue. So as many of us have a “snow day” from work and school, let’s take a moment to thank a farmer and those in agriculture for all that they do, each and every day.