Prompted by the many sources of stress currently impacting farmers and ranchers, the Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) and the Red River Farm Network (RRFN) have joined forces to create a new radio series called TransFARMation.
“Farming is a stressful business during the best of times” says Don Wick, president, RRFN. “Agriculture’s financial health is being influenced by tight margins, the trade war, production issues, and more. These are all factors where farmers and ranchers have little or no control.”
The series uses farm radio, podcasts, and social media to increase awareness and reduce inhibitions about acknowledging farmer stress while highlighting sources of support.
“Many people are struggling and they need to know they’re not alone,” said Agriculture Commissioner Thom Petersen. “This is a powerful series – we hear from farmers, ranchers, and others in agriculture talk about some of the strategies and solutions that helped them when things got tough.”
The 60 second prime-time radio stories can be heard on all of RRFN’s 20 stations throughout Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota starting the week of April 8. In addition, the in-depth podcasts can be found at www.rrfn.com/transfarmation.
TransFARMation is supported by a grant from the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) National Institute for Safety and Health (NIOSH), the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health, and by AgCountry Farm Credit Services, Minnesota Corn Growers Association, Minnesota Soybean Growers Association, Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council, North Dakota Corn Growers Association, North Dakota Farmers Union, North Dakota Soybean Council, North Dakota Wheat Commission, and Prairie St. John’s.
Broadcasts are solely the responsibility of the creators and do not necessarily represent the official views of the CDC, NIOSH, or the Great Plains Center for Agricultural Health.
If you or someone you know is struggling with stress, anxiety, depression, or other problems, the free and confidential Minnesota Farm & Rural Helpline is available 24 hours, seven days a week at 833-600-2670.
Margaret Hart, Minnesota Department of Agriculture
Don Wick, Red River Farm Network