Back to November 2017

A Salute to the American Pecan Farmer

It’s November and there is, perhaps, no better Month to celebrate the American pecan farmer. After all, you are one to be celebrated!

You are, most assuredly, in full swing harvesting your crop. You are short on daylight, and your days are long. And at times you may be lacking the help you need to get the job done.

You are probably seeing less of your family during these months as well. Spending meal times out in the orchard rather than around the dinner table. And if you are like my husband, you finish your day covered in dust and grease and are in serious need of a bath. Just to start your day all over again the next morning. It’s hard work, no doubt. But one thing is certain…it’s rewarding.

Your reward may not always come in the form of loaded pecan trees with a bumper crop. But it is definitely rewarding to enjoy the fruits of your labor. To know that your work is making an impact. And it is. Consumers across the globe can attest to that. And especially in this Thanksgiving month where pecans take a seat at the table of homes across our country. We have even more reason to remember the American pecan farmer. And so, we salute you.

A Time of Thanksgiving

As we pause this month to give thanks for the many blessings we have in our lives, we also pause to thank you. You are the bread and butter of our country. Although farmers only make up about 2 percent of our population, we recognize that we have fresh food on our plates because of the work that you do. Our meals are enriched because of your hard work. And our Thanksgiving traditions would definitely not be the same without you.

As you may have read a few months ago I shared with you my belief that pecans help contribute to long life. I spent some time and received some help from others to collect data that helped to support this theory. We found some really good information. While it was helpful and quite interesting, we found that we just didn’t have enough data to conclusively reveal what we strongly believe.

Compelling Data from the American Pecan Farmer

In fact, the most recent records that we could find grouped by county dated back to the 1980s. This was prior to privacy policies which help protect production numbers where there may be only one grower in a county. As a grower myself, I appreciate privacy policies. I’ve also come to realize that in order to advance the message of the pecan we must also be diligent to provide compelling information.

As growers, we know how good pecans are for our health and how delicious they are to eat. But there is a big percentage of the population that has not heard this message. In fact, most people don’t even recognize pecans as a major contributor to the nut industry. I know…shocking, right? I couldn’t believe it myself when I first heard it. But as I am talking to people I realize it’s sadly true.

It’s time for that to change. I hope that we will see this percentage drastically reduced over the next few years. And when it does we will have one more reason to salute the American pecan farmer and to help tell your story.

Author Photo

Kristen Millican

Kristen Millican and her husband, Winston Millican, live in San Saba, Texas and are owners of Millican Pecan Company. Kristen works with their family business as well as writes for their company blog. They are happy to be continuing their family pecan-growing heritage for five generations now!