Farmers Feed US coming to Washington, D.C., Maryland, Pennsylvania and Delaware

Farmers Feed US coming to Washington, D.C., Maryland, Pennsylvania and Delaware

Mid-Atlantic Farmers Partner to Reach Out to Region's Consumers

A coalition of agricultural commodity groups and farmers from Maryland, Pennsylvania and Delaware are partnering to launch Mid-Atlantic Farmers Feed US (www.FarmersFeedUS.org) in January 2012. "The Mid-Atlantic Farmers Feed US program is a tremendous opportunity to introduce the region's consumers to the hard-working men and women who raise healthy, nutritious and affordable food," said Charlie Arnot, CEO of the Center for Food Integrity. "We need to show that even though our systems have changed and our use of technology has increased, the farmer's commitment to do what's right has never been stronger."

Open to residents of those three states and Washington, D.C., the program will offer consumers the chance to win one of four "Free Groceries for a Year" sweepstakes prizes, while introducing them to 10 of the region's farmers. Commodities represented by those featured farmers include soybeans, dairy, beef cattle, hogs, mushrooms, roasters, layers, vegetables, watermelons and corn.

"Farmers Feed US" is based on consumer research conducted by the Center for Food Integrity (CFI) that proves that "shared values" are three to five times more important than demonstrating competence in building consumer trust. The program uses a variety of strategies to engage consumers with those who produce food, including featuring the region's farmers in online video farm tours, earned and social media and television advertisements. Through this engagement, farmers will build public trust by demonstrating
they share the same values as consumers.

Since July 2009, Farmers Feed US has been connecting farmers and consumers in Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Iowa, Missouri, Wisconsin, South Dakota, Minnesota and Illinois. During that time, those programs have accounted for more than 1.25 million consumer sweepstakes registrations, with each one introducing consumers to farmers from their state. Additionally, the program has built a consumer "opt-in" list of more than 80,000 consumers in participating states, who have requested on-going communication on farming and food, as well as social media platforms on Facebook and Twitter with more than 18,000 likers and followers.

*Based on Food Marketing Institute figures, a $5,000 value.

The Center for Food Integrity is a non-profit organization established to build consumer trust and confidence in today's food system. Our members, who represent every segment of the food system, are committed to providing accurate information and issues important to consumers. For more information, visit www.foodintegrity.org.

09.21.2011