Eight Wisconsin farmers who were selected to make videos and television commercials promoting the Farmers Feed US Program probably never thought of themselves as film stars. But when the film crew arrived at their farms for the shoots, they were thrust into action.
Such was the case when the crew showed up May 5 at Bill and Julia Hoffman's farm near Columbus.
Hoffman, a member of and past president of Wisconsin Corn Growers Association, grows 700 acres of corn and 500 acres of soybeans.
Other featured farmers from across the state include: Alan Arndt, beef, Janesville; Dan Truttman, New Glarus, dairy; Daphne Holterman, Watertown, dairy; Vick Coughlin, Watertown, soybeans; Shannon Wolf, Lancaster, pork; Chris Landwehr, DePere, veal; and Bill Rehn, eggs, Lake Mills.
What is it?
Farmers Feed US is a proactive campaign designed to create greater consumer trust in our nation's farmers by communicating shared values.
Farmers Feed US will launch a three-tiered promotion designed to engage today's consumer on July 6 in Wisconsin.
The program offers consumers a chance to register online to win $5,000 in free groceries.
"We'll randomly draw two winners from Wisconsin who will receive $5,000 in gift cards to their favorite grocery store," explains Mark Crouser with the Center for Food Integrity and a member of the film crew.
Crouser says the website allows consumers to interact directly with the state's farmers as they register for the promotion at www.FarmersFeedUS.org
They can see farmer-focused video profiles and video tours of each farm. Links to state producer groups will help drive education.
The promotion is designed to:
*Create a connection between farmers and consumers
*Offer a resource to educate consumers on contemporary agriculture
*Create consumer awareness of products
*Drive sales of featured products
*Generate consumer excitement via the contest
Why it works
"Farmer participation is key," Crouser says. "Participation by farmers on the site is a crucial element that puts a face on contemporary agriculture and allows them to connect with consumers through shared values. The contest is a hook to drive consumers to the website. The site serves as a point of connection for consumers interested in food and agriculture."
ON CUE: Cameraman Rhett McClure begins filming as corn grower Bill Hoffman introduces himself and begins talking about his farm near Columbus.
Wisconsin's sweepstakes and website will launch on July 6. The promotion will run for 90 days.
Once the promotion ends, a mix of programming will keep the website fresh and drive consumers back to the website.
"The program will maintain momentum, while continuing to engage consumers statewide," Crouser says. It's a great opportunity for continued retailer involvement with recipes, additional contests, printable coupons, etc.
"By the end of summer, we'll have eight states featured including, Wisconsin, South Dakota, Minnesota, Ohio, Indiana, Michigan, Missouri and Iowa," Crouser says.