On my recent trip to Ireland with the Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program (OALP), we visited many farms around this small island nation. What we discovered was, they’re not all that different than farms back home in Oklahoma. They have many of the same concerns we have, government mandates, subsidies, production values, etc., only in some cases, they deal with much more than we do. I overheard one of my classmates saying, after coming here, I won’t complain about the mandates we have to deal with, they’re much, much less stringent than in Europe.
We were also able to see a lot of diversification from dairy farming to vegetable farming to sheep farming and also some of the problems that they have been dealing with for years. In this week’s video blog, travel to Ireland with OALP and see what we saw and learned when it comes to Irish farming.
~ Alisa Hines
I recently went with the Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program on their international trip to Scotland and Ireland. Oh how beautiful it was. In Ireland, when they say forty shades of green, they mean it. It’s green everywhere! And like Oklahoma, Spring arrived early just in time for our visit.
While there, we not only visited farms and ranches to see how agriculture is done outside the U.S., we also had opportunities to see some of the sites. In this week’s video blog, we take you to Ireland to see how these Oklahoman’s had a little bit of fun in the Emerald Isle.
I’ve been a member of the Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program for the past eighteen months. We have traveled all over Oklahoma and experienced all types of agriculture…from cotton in the Southwest to Mushrooms in the Northeast. Agriculture is still big business here, although only about two percent of the population actually works in the agriculture industry.
At the end of the program, there is an international trip taken to show Oklahomans how agriculture is managed outside of the U.S. It’s held in a different location each time and this year we had the opportunity to go to Scotland and Ireland. I have to say, I was really excited when I found out where we were going. I have always wanted to visit both countries.
I wasn’t disappointed. Both countries are absolutely beautiful! I was afraid that when we went in the later part of February, it would be gray and dreary and not very pretty kind of like it is here in Oklahoma in the Winter. Boy was I mistaken! While it was cold, it wasn’t gray and dreary (okay the weather was a lot of the time but not the scenery). It was quite green. Scotland not as much as Ireland, but green enough.
In this week’s video blog, see what Scotland was like for twenty-five Oklahomans including myself.
When I joined the Oklahoma Agricultural Leadership Program (OALP) a year ago, I didn’t have a clue what I was in for. We’ve gone across the state and seen so much what Oklahoma farmers and ranchers do and have found out what it really takes to be in the agriculture business today. It has really opened my eyes and I’m glad to be a part of such a wonderful organization and to be able to say I am a member of Class XV.
But I think one of the most useful aspects of the program, is the people we meet who are in our class. It is a network of people from across the state from all walks of life who become your friends. They are someone you can call for anything and be able to count on them to be there for you. My classmates are extremely talented, intelligent people. I sometimes feel intimidated by their knowledge. In this week’s video blog, meet Shannon Cunningham, one of my OALP classmates who I feel really sums up what Oklahoma agriculture is all about.
~ Alisa Hines
On the Horizon: Making Agriculture Count from Alisa Hines on Vimeo.
As a member of Class XV of the Oklahoma Agriculture Leadership Program, I get to visit many places across the state of Oklahoma to learn how agriculture is done. It is a program I have wanted to be in for many years and was privileged to do so this go round. I have learned so much at times my head is spinning. You’d be surprised what really goes on down on the farm.
For example, the diversification that takes place all around you, from wheat to vegetables to fruit, sometimes all on the same farm. To remain economically viable, Oklahoma farmers are learning how to make a living year round versus just seasonally. Sometimes that means a nontraditional crop.
In this week’s video blog, I show you our state’s hottest crop from Southwest Oklahoma.
On the Horizon: Too Hot to Handle from Alisa Hines on Vimeo.