Ag’s Go-To Messages Not Resonating
A recent survey by a group of farmers and ranchers examined consumers’ reactions to the most commonly used messages in U.S. agriculture. The survey found that consumers often derive negative meanings from the messages the agriculture industry uses to promote itself.
This survey finds that, while consumers tend to trust farmers, they do not trust farming practices. Further, farmers are not speaking to consumers’ concerns and the messages they are sending are not convincing consumers to trust the agriculture industry.
Researchers provide the following summary of the way that consumers interpret the major messages put forward by the agriculture industry.
|Farmer’s Message||Consumer Hears|
|Our methods are proven and safe||Your methods tamper with nature.|
|We keep food affordable …||… but at what expense to quality?|
|Most farms are family run …||… but beholden to big processors|
|We care about our land and animals||You will take shortcuts to be profitable|
|We need to produce more to feed the world||You want to produce more to sell to the world|
|We need a secure food supply||You want subsidies|
|We have the safest food supply in the world||Pesticides, antibiotics and hormones may not be safe in the long run|