Last month, Chicago writer Lori Rotenberk reported for Grist that women are the fastest growing segment of the American farming landscape:
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service reported last month that the number of woman-operated farms more than doubled between 1982 and 2007. Add primary and secondary operators, and there are nearly 1 million women in farming, accounting for 30 percent of U.S. farmers.
So hot is ag life that novels about farming are replacing chick lit, offering an unexpected twist to the notion of dirty romance.
Today, Rotenberk was a guest on The Brian Lehrer Show on WNYC, where she talked about the trend and the women who are spurning office jobs for work in the fields and on urban farms. Joining them was Hannah Breckbill, a 25-year-old who walked from a career as a mathematician to farm in Elgin, Minn. They took calls from several farmers and a fellow who Lehrer dubbed a “farmer’s husband.” Ah yes, times have changed.
Give it a listen:
- Breaking the grass ceiling: On U.S. farms, women are taking the reins
- Farmers fatales: Here are the women who grow your food