While many soybean farmers have united with ISA and taken a stand against potential threats to the industry, more voices are needed to help secure the future success of Illinois agriculture.
To engage the next generation of farmers and meet membership goals, ISA is recruiting representatives who are passionate about the agriculture industry for their new Soy Leader task force. Spearheading this new campaign are Jason and Tasha Bunting, family farmers whose roots run deep in Grundy County.
Both Jason and Tasha are member of multigenerational farm families and active members of the Illinois agriculture community. Jason is a past president of the Illinois Young Ag leaders; Tasha is the Grundy County Farm Bureau Manager.
"We are very excited at the prospect of actively promoting ISA membership," says Jason, "We plan on attending Illinois Farm Bureau Young Ag Leader meetings throughout the state as well as traveling to trade shows, other meetings and fairs to promote membership and introduce the Soy leader Program."
To promote the program, the Buntings are seeking to engage the next generations of farmers and recruit leaders who can help preserve the future of Illinois soybean farmers. In the initial stage of the program, leaders representing the 18 districts of the state will be recruited. As membership grows, this endeavor will expand to the county level. These leaders are expected to acquire expertise, receive industry exposure and develop a critical global perspective.
In turn, the Soy Leaders will take their newly acquired knowledge and recruit new ISA members by attending local and regional events attended by men and women whose lives are impacted by soybean production. They will be able to give presentations, conduct question-and-answer sessions and provide attendees with informational materials. Membership should grow as a result, which will help to strengthen the organization's voice at the state and federal level.
In addition to the Soy Leader initiative, ISA plans to grow its membership base by implementing a corporate affiliate membership program. This program is directed at businesses that are supported by Illinois soybean farmers, such as seed companies, farm implement dealers and grain elevators. By joining ISA, these companies and organizations will help protect the rights of their clients who are soybean farmers while making an investment in their own futures.
To encourage extensive participation in the affiliate program, ISA is offering discounted 3-year membership rates that provide greater savings for higher enrollment numbers which ultimately lowers the cost per person.
Three members: $585
Five members: $875 (save $100)
Seven members: $1,015 (save $350)
Ten members: $1,350 (save $600)
Each member enrolled after the first 10 may be added for $135 each