A Story of the Alabama Farmers Federation
Created by farmers, led by farmers and dedicated to serving farmers, the Alabama Farmers Federation promotes the economic, social and educational interests of Alabamians.
A Story of Heritage
Alabama’s rich farming history is more than soil, plants and animals. The farmers who earn their living from the earth have carved a big part of that history. When the Alabama Farmers Federation was formed in 1921, it became the unified voice of those men and women.
Federation leaders founded Alfa Insurance in 1946 to provide fire protection for rural residents. Alfa has grown into a top-rated insurance company with over a million policies in force.
With just 75,000 members in 1960, the Alabama Farmers Federation has grown to become the state’s largest farm organization with more than 340,000 members. The Federation’s “one voice” delivers a powerful message at the State House in Montgomery and on Capitol Hill in Washington.
A Story of Unity
Alabama Farmers Federation members are organized through 67 independent county Farmers Federations. Each county elects delegates to represent them at the Federation’s annual meeting, where the organization’s policies and positions on state and national issues are developed. This grassroots leadership sets the Alabama Farmers Federation apart from other organizations.
The Federation implements programs and develops future leaders through its Young Farmers and Women’s Leadership divisions, as well as 15 commodity divisions and three affiliated organizations. The Young Farmers Program and Women’s Leadership Division encourage and motivate members to be active in politics, their community and consumer education activities.
Farmers representing every commodity produced in Alabama serve on committees that set priorities for research and develop educational programs for producers. In some cases, these committees administer producer-funded checkoff programs.
A Story of Purpose
As a grassroots organization, the Federation’s purpose stems from the ground up. The organization is dedicated to serving farmers by promoting the economic, social and educational interests of all Alabamians.
The “look” of that purpose changed through the years. In the early days, the Federation marketed mainstream commodities such as milk and cotton to help farmers get better prices. Marketing associations were added for hay, hogs, grain and more.
Commodity divisions spearheaded revolutionary programs that improved lives for farmers. These include the Boll Weevil Eradication Program in 1987, Concentrated Animal Feeding Operations regulations in 1999, passing a bill requiring labeling of catfish being served in restaurants in 2009, and increasing federal funding to combat feral swine in 2018.
Federation members and staff are active in the legislative and policy arenas, too. The Federation has been part of many efforts to tangibly affect Alabamians, including encouraging rural electrification in 1937; winning sales tax exemptions on feed, insecticides and fungicides in 1953; passing the property tax classification bill in 1972; passing the current use law in 1982; defeating Amendment 1, a $1 billion tax referendum, in 2003; and more.
A Story of Vision
As the world’s population explodes, the demand for safe, affordable and abundant food continues to increase as well. Farmers meet those challenges by utilizing the latest technology and drawing on centuries of wisdom from farmers before them.
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Thanks to advanced technology, one farmer can currently feed 155 people. In 1960, one farmer fed 46 people.
From our members who rely on us to protect their rural lifestyle and their rights to farm, to those who depend on these hardworking men and women to produce the food and fiber, the Alabama Farmers Federation will continue to rely on its wholesome principles to meet the challenges that lay ahead.