About Women, Food and Agriculture Network
Women make up more than half the US population, and own an increasing number of farms. Surveys show that women own or co-own nearly half the farmland in the Midwest. But we are under-represented on the boards of policy-making bodies, and often encounter communications barriers when accessing information from agencies and institutions.
WFAN exists so that women can give each other the information, connections, and encouragement they need to be effective practitioners and supporters of sustainable agriculture and healthy localized food systems.
WFAN members come from all across the US and several other countries. We are diverse in ages (ranging from teens to eighties) and backgrounds. We are farmers, urban gardeners, environmental educators, community activists, academics, and others who care about food and our environment.
To engage women in building an ecological and just food and agricultural system through individual and community power.
The idea of WFAN was born in 1994, when Iowa organic farmer Denise O’Brien and New York state food justice advocate Kathy Lawrence organized a women in agriculture working group for the United Nations 4th World Conference on Women in Beijing. They were passionate about addressing the absence of women’s voices in agricultural policy in the US and abroad. They wanted to empower women as champions of healthy food and farming systems, food justice, and food sovereignty within their own communities.