Operation Main Street is the Pork Checkoff’s outreach program that tells the positive story of pork production. Through this program, volunteers speak to a variety of audiences, telling the pork industry’s story of innovation, quality and stewardship. Welcome, Minnesota pig farmer Wanda Patsche says these are important opportunities…
“Because we have that one-on-one contact with consumers. You’re there in person, they can see pictures of your farm, you can tell them real-life stories of what’s happened on your farm, and you really develop that relationship, that connection with consumers. It’s only at that point you can build that trust.
“I’ve seen that happen numerous times with different presentations I’ve done, different conversations I’ve had with consumers that once you can look them in the eye and say ‘here’s what’s happened on my farm’, here’s why we do what we do’, most of the time, I say, nine times out of ten, they get it, they understand, the understand why you’re doing what you’re doing. It’s just that prior to that conversation, they really don’t know, they don’t understand.”
Patsche is on the Minnesota Pork Board. She encourages other farmers to find ways to join her and tell their story…
“To be honest with you, I’ve always told people that we really need to find ways to talk outside the choir, which is great, because when we talk to our community organizations, when we talk to schools, when we talk to Chamber of Commerce, we are doing that, but I also think it’s important to talk to people within the choir, because we need to have more voices out there. “
And I would encourage any farmer, anybody that’s got any connection with agriculture to become involved.”
Operation Main Street began in 2004 and continues to train thousands of volunteers for the program.