I’m just a farmer. Not an “invisible farmer”, not a “woman in ag”, just a farmer. Being able to prime a pump and drain a sump does not make me exceptional either. Just another farmer.
I’m not sure, really, why there are so many women-in-ag groups. Their existence suggests the female form is somehow a problem when it comes to twisting wire into a figure 8 knot or developing a new plot. It’s not.
All my life, I’ve watched women farmers at work. My grandmother, mother, neighbours and friends. There’s nothing new – or second-rate – about female farmers.
Nor does being capable with my hands make me any less of a woman. I can totter in stillettos and slosh around in Skellerups. Big deal. So do thousands of other farmers.
What am I missing? Why do women flock to special female-only groups and why do so few of us turn up to broader industry events?
What do you think? Are female-only ag forums important to make women feel comfortable expressing ourselves or do they simply reinforce a perception that we’re somehow not able to perform in mixed company?
I’m just not sure.