Media messages about the economic boost that comes with livestock industry growth is too often pre-empted by anti-farm activists’ rhetoric. 

The Ohio Farm Bureau Federation has created the Ohio Livestock Public Involvement and Media Relations Program to help Ohio producers address this challenge directly. The program’s cornerstone is “Building Community Capital,” a manual that provides producers with a plan to manage public-relations issues associated with new or expanding livestock farms.

For example, livestock production in Ohio contributes more than $8 billion to the state’s economy, generates $229 million in tax revenue and provides 47,000 jobs, according to program materials. 

The manual also has a section dedicated to understanding and working with the media.

“Producers who don’t speak up on their own behalf allow others to speak for them. If they do that, most of the time they’re not going to like what they hear,” says David White, executive director of the Ohio Livestock Coalition, a partner in the program.

For more information or to get a copy of the brochure, go to www.ofbf.org or call (614) 249-2400.