The old farmer stereotype of a white guy in overalls has at least one truth to it: The majority of farmers in the U.S. are white males. Yet a growing number of women are joining their ranks.
Women now run about 14 percent of the nation’s farms, up from only 5 percent in the 1980s. Most female-run farms tend to be smaller and more diverse, and many are part of the burgeoning organic and local foods movement.
Women have long been involved in agriculture, but even just a generation ago, it was harder for women to take leadership roles on the farm.
“Girls could grow up to be farmers’ wives, but for a woman to actually consider herself to be farmer or grow up to be farmer, that wasn’t in the script,” says Helen Gunderson, who grew up in a farming family in northern Iowa. Now Gunderson lives in a one-story white ranch house in a quiet neighborhood in Ames, and she has turned her half-acre yard into a garden and chicken run.
Is it too late for them to apply for Pigford cash?