Invite your neighbor to a Breakfast on the Farm
The perfect opportunity awaits you, your family and friends this summer at one of eight Breakfast on the Farm events scheduled for June through September. Kids of all ages – young and old alike – will experience a memorable outing to a modern-day Michigan farm.
Breakfast on the Farm is a free family-friendly program that gives consumers and farm neighbors a first-hand look at modern food production and the farm families who work hard to produce a safe, wholesome food supply for Michigan communities and the world. Michigan State University (MSU) Extension began organizing the statewide effort in 2009, and MSU works closely with county Farm Bureaus and farmer-hosts to recruit volunteers and promote the breakfasts. Visitors get to participate in self-guided tours, enjoy a delicious breakfast and meet local farmers.
Mary Dunckel, MSU Extension agricultural literacy educator and one of the organizers of the statewide events, says Breakfast on the Farm was created to help non-farm families learn about modern farms directly from the people who put food on their tables.
“Farmers are our best examples of what it means to be a steward of the land and their animals,” she says. “Most Michigan farms are family-owned small businesses. What better way to learn the real story behind modern-day farming than by coming face to face with the people who are actually producing our food? That’s what Breakfast on the Farm is all about.”
Last year, more than 7,500 people attended four Breakfast on the Farm events in Clinton, Washtenaw, Isabella and Alpena counties. Attendees had the opportunity to learn how cows were milked, take wagon rides, sit on tractors, pet baby calves and eat ice cream. Farmers and industry professionals were able to answer questions and educate those who visited about their farm operations, the industry and food production.
Attendees also learned about proper animal care and operating farm equipment, all while enjoying a selection of Michigan-grown and Michigan-processed food at the complimentary breakfast.
Breakfast on the Farm is an excellent opportunity to spend quality time with your family while learning about the agriculture industry from the experts themselves, the farmers, through educational exhibits, a tour of the farm and open-question periods. Mark your calendars for these upcoming Breakfast on the Farm events:
• June 18 hosted by Jeff and Patty Thelen, St. Johns (Clinton County)
• June 25 hosted by Raymond and Stutzman Farm, Morenci (Lenawee County)
• July 9 hosted by Circle K Farms Inc., West Branch (Ogemaw County)
• July 16 hosted by Pasch Dairy, Mount Pleasant (Isabella County)
• August 13 hosted by Daybreak Dairy LLC, Zeeland (Ottawa County)
• August 20 hosted by S & M Dairy, Harbor Beach (Huron County)
• September 17 hosted by Taylor Creek Farm LLC, Pickford (Chippewa County)
• September 24 hosted by Benthem Brothers Inc., McBain (Missaukee County)
“I’m really excited about the quality and geographic diversity of all the farms that are hosting events,” said Nancy Thelen, MSU Extension agricultural literacy educator. “They, and the volunteers who support each event, have an opportunity to tell agriculture’s story to myriad people of all ages and backgrounds. It’s really exciting.”
There is no cost to attend the event or take the tour, but tickets are required for the free breakfast.