Farmworker Appreciation Day
Every August 6th is observed as Farmworker Appreciation Day. This holiday seeks to raise public awareness about the importance of the work done by farmworkers through a campaign of appreciation for their work.
The average agricultural worker has almost two decades of experience on a U.S. farm and works approximately 39 weeks a year in this field. Their work directly supports the $1.3+ trillion U.S. agricultural industry, and without their valuable labor, none of us would have the fruits, vegetables, and meats that we rely on for our daily sustenance.
That alone seems like a worthy reason to support agricultural workers and give them thanks on this holiday.
The History of Farmworker Appreciation Day
This holiday can be traced back decades, all the way to the 1960s, in fact. This is when a group of Filipino farmworkers in California went on strike against poor working conditions and low wages.
This strike would last for several years but would lead to the formation of the United Farm Workers (UFW) Union. These groups would advocate for the rights of farmworkers and help to improve working conditions for thousands of farm laborers.
In 1966, the UFW created and celebrated Farmworker Appreciation Day for the first time. However, that celebration was observed in September of that year. It was observed on the feast day of Our Lady of Mercy — who just so happens to be the patron saint of farmers and farmhands.
In 1994, U.S. President Bill Clinton signed a proclamation that would designate August 6th as National Farmworkers Appreciation Day.
Observing Farmworker Appreciation Day
This holiday is dedicated to thanking the farmworkers who make huge contributions to the world’s food supply. It’s a day to thank farmworkers for all their hard work. Since we understand that not everyone has the opportunity to thank these farmworkers in person, people willing to celebrate this day can thank them through the Internet using the hashtag #FarmworkerAppreciationDay.
Of course, one of the biggest “thanks” that people can give farmworkers is to support them as they continue to fight for better working conditions and wages. This can be done by contacting politicians and letting them know that the welfare of farmworkers is important. This is probably the biggest thanks anyone, anywhere can give a farmworker.
The sooner we realize that farmworkers are extremely important to our way of life, the sooner we can make sure that they are given the support they deserve. And Farmworker Appreciation Day is a great way for people to start that journey.