Proclamation 4910 -- National Agriculture Day, 1982

March 18, 1982

By the President of the United States

of America

A Proclamation

The production, distribution, and preservation of America's food and fiber supply is basic to this nation's economic, physical, and social well-being.

American agriculture has achieved a record of productivity unmatched by any other food and fiber system on earth. In 1820, a farmer in this country produced enough food to feed himself and three other persons. By 1940, that same farmer was feeding himself and eleven other people. Today a single American farmer is capable of satisfying the food requirements of seventy-seven individuals -- a sevenfold increase in the course of forty years. This quantum leap in the productivity of our agricultural community makes it possible for the United States to respond to the demands of a burgeoning international population without imposing unnecessarily high food prices on American consumers.

The contributions of this nation's agricultural sector are not limited to its capacity to produce a plentiful supply of food. Once agricultural commodities leave the farmgate, they generate economic activity which creates job opportunities for 19 million nonfarm workers. The success of our farmers in marketing their production abroad has enabled this nation to sharply reduce its balance of trade deficit and to pay for its energy imports. Our farmers are the critical link in a food production chain that consistently yields the most wholesome and varied range of foodstuffs known to man. In addition, the farm community enhances our quality of life by helping preserve the family and the individual as meaningful components of modern American society.

To recognize agriculture's contribution to the nation and create a better understanding of each person's stake in a reliable food and fiber supply, the 97th Congress has by S.J. Res. 148 proclaimed March 18, 1982, as National Agriculture Day.

Now, Therefore, I, Ronald Reagan, President of the United States of America, do hereby call upon the people of the United States to observe Thursday, March 18, 1982, as National Agriculture Day with appropriate ceremonies and activities.

In Witness Whereof, I have hereunto set my hand this 18th day of March, in the year of our Lord nineteen hundred and eighty-two, and of the Independence of the United States of America the two hundred and sixth.

Ronald Reagan

[Filed with the Office of the Federal Register, 4:38 p.m., March 18, 1982]