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OPINION: Thank A Farmer This Thanksgiving (11/25/2019)



Thank A Farmer This Thanksgiving

An Editorial by Texas Agriculture Commissioner Sid Miller
November 25, 2019


Howdy neighbors! In just a few short days, it will be time to gather for a day of feasting with friends and family. Your plate will probably be piled high with turkey and mashed potatoes, with just enough space left over for  Grandma’s homemade pumpkin pie. 

All across Texas, families will come together to give thanks and reflect on this year’s blessings.  Those might include a good health, a new job, or a new baby. 

This Thanksgiving, I’d like you to add one more thanks to your list.  Please remember to add a well-deserved thank you for every hardworking Texas farmer and rancher who provides for the nourishment of our bodies not just on Thanksgiving, but all year long.

Each day, starting before dawn and finishing long after dark, American farmers and ranchers are putting in countless hours to supply our nation – and the world – with food and fiber.

You might have thought you loaded up your plate with too much turkey, but did you know that American turkey farmers provided over 4 billion pounds of turkey meat last year? With the average turkey weighing in at 30 pounds, turkey farmers raised enough turkeys for each person in the United States to enjoy a whole bird . . . without having to share. Additionally, in 2018, farmers in the top five pumpkin-producing States harvested just over 1 billion pounds of pumpkins. How many of Grandma’s pumpkin pies would that make?

So as you’re recovering from your post-turkey nap, or making your list for Black Friday,  I’d like you to think of that rancher who just finished feeding his last pen of cows, or that a farmer who has closed the door to his tractor after a long day in the fields, and the family who can’t wait to see them before the sun comes up and the work starts all over again. 

This Thanksgiving remember to raise your fork for the farmers and ranchers who help produce that food on our table, clothes on our back and work tirelessly from sunrise to sunset to keep our agriculture industry alive.

As I always say, there will be times you’ll need a good doctor, and probably occasionally a good lawyer at some point in your life.  

Yet every day, three times a day, you’re gonna need a farmer.  That is why Texas agriculture matters.

May God continue to bless all our farmers and ranchers across Texas and the nation. Have a happy Thanksgiving and a peaceful and joyous holiday season!



An eighth-generation Texas farmer and rancher, Sid Miller is the 12th Commissioner of the Texas Department of Agriculture (TDA). A ten-time world champion rodeo cowboy, he has devoted his life to promoting Texas agriculture, rural communities and the western heritage of Texas.


For more information visit the Texas Department of Agriculture website at www.texasagriculture.gov or contact Communications Director Mark Dallas Loeffler at 512.475.1669

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