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The Student News Site of CFHS

The Lantern

The Student News Site of CFHS

The Lantern

The Student News Site of CFHS

The Lantern

A new era of agriculture

The biggest source of hope for agriculture is young people. Young agriculturalists hold the key to sustainable agriculture in light of a changing climate. Young agriculturalists craft creative business solutions so farms thrive. Young agriculturalists want to craft a better world. Young agriculturalists care.

Here at Cannon Falls High School, the Cannon Falls FFA chapter is tackling environmental health at the community level in a ditch clean-up through the Adopt-a-Highway program. Every spring and fall, the chapter completes its Environmental Building Communities benchmark. A typical ditch clean-up for the FFA chapter mobilizes the membership to pick up litter along a two-mile stretch along Highway 19, near the village of Vasa. 

“We get put into small groups with people from our chapter so [you get] to grow your bond with them while also pulling garbage out of the ditch. It’s not polluting the earth while you’re picking up other people’s litter, as well as having a fun time with the people that you’re growing connections with,” chapter Assistant Officer Hilari Palodichuk explained.

By participating, members complete one of their three required annual community service events while simultaneously helping the planet and spending quality time with friends.

It’s not polluting the earth while you’re picking up other people’s litter, as well as having a fun time with the people that you’re growing connections with.”

— Hilari Palodichuk

In addition to their existing community service projects, while the chapter attended the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis, many members learned of other ways to serve both the community and stay sustainable. The National FFA Organization has made sustainability measures a priority in recent years. Dr. Park described, “The production of food and fiber, conservation of fresh water, and stewardship of our resources in a sustainable environment will only be more important every day going forward.”

The organization is growing exponentially, reaching a record 945,000 members this year. With this flock of young agriculturalists, the FFA has used its platform for good; the Living to Serve program and Sustainability initiatives encourage chapters to leave the world better than they found it.

The production of food and fiber, conservation of fresh water, and stewardship of our resources in a sustainable environment will only be more important every day going forward.”

— Dr. Travis Park

Dr. Park is optimistic that FFA members across the country will go on to propel agricultural progress: “What gives me the most hope is that our National FFA Organization currently has the highest membership in its history. Also, we have the most support of the agricultural and educational sectors ever.”

With this widespread support, the National FFA Organization is expanding its influence and addressing the biggest problems facing modern agriculture.