What You Should Know About Women in Agriculture

Tuesday, June 4, 2013
Woman farmer in field with tractor

The number of women working in agribusiness is increasing, and we employ many talented women at Bayer CropScience. A greater number of females are studying agriculture than ever before, increasing the number of women in various agricultural professions over the past two decades.

According to the 2007 Census of Agriculture:

  • Over one million women operate farms and ranches in the U.S. and over 300,000 women act as the principal operators

  • When compared to all farms nationwide, those with female principal operators tend to be smaller both in terms of size and sales; however, women are more likely to own all of the farmland that they operate

  • The states with the highest percentage of female principal farm operators are Arizona, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Maine and Alaska

  • The majority of female farm operators are Caucasian but a growing percentage of operators are of American Indian or Hispanic origin

  • Women-operated farms tend to be diverse. Women are much more likely than their male counterparts to operate farms classified as “other livestock farms,” a category that includes horse farms, or "all other crops," which includes hay farms. Men are more likely to run grain and oilseed farms or beef cattle operations

We were a proud sponsor of last year’s Executive Women in Agriculture Conference (EWA) in Chicago, which aimed to educate women about everything from farm business practices, agvocating, insurance, taxes, marketing, social media, government policy and time management. Several of our employees attended the conference and they enjoyed engaging with customers and other women in the industry. Attendees from Bayer CropScience included Iris Williams, NAFTA Market Acceptance Manager; Rachel Walters, District Manager; Tiffany Fremder, Marketing Manager; Dorie Berry, Executive Assistant to CEO Jim Blome; and Tanya Zuckerman, Manager, Meetings & Events.

We surveyed women in agribusiness at the EWA conference on social media to gain insight into how Bayer CropScience can help women grow and succeed in the industry. The results prove that conferences like EWA are both needed and desired by women in agribusiness.

  • 46 percent of respondents said being treated with respect is one of the biggest challenges women face in the ag industry

  • 41 percent of respondents said their biggest hope for the future of agriculture is a sufficient food supply for a growing population

  • 53 percent of respondents said training and tools to keep up with trends and changes in the industry are the most important thing needed to be successful in the industry

Thank you to all of the hard-working women on farms and in agribusinesses who are propelling the future of farming and providing a great example for young women with an interest in agriculture.


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