By Doug Beretta, President

In 1917 a group of Sonoma County farmers banded together with a mission: To unify their voices to protect agriculture for future generations. This is still done today. The Sonoma County Farm Bureau currently has 1,105 Agriculture members and 361 Associate members, and they are represented by 22 board members from throughout the county, including the president of the local Young Farmers & Ranchers.

Membership dues are very important to all Farm Bureaus across the state. At Sonoma County Farm Bureau, membership dues go toward paying staff, creating programs that benefit our members, such as educational trainings and fire safety courses so members can obtain a fire safety pass to enter their properties during an evacuation, and many other member benefits. It also gives Sonoma County Farm Bureau a lot of clout when talking to elected officials about issues when we can reference the number of members we have. Within our membership schedule, we have several different categories that members fall under. Our most popular is our Agriculture Membership. This is for the agriculture and rural residential person that wants to support Farm Bureau, have their voice heard when they have issues and concerns, and they can be elected to the board of directors. We also have our Business Membership, which is a little more expensive, but there are advertisement opportunities in our Sonoma Marin Farm News and opportunities to create member benefits (discounts, etc. ) to attract customers to your business. We also have a Premium Membership for individuals and businesses that want to support Farm Bureau above and beyond the normal membership cost. With a Premium Membership, you get one extra membership that you can give away to the person of your choice. Premium Members are also invited to a luncheon each year with a keynote speaker talking about issues in agriculture and beyond. Anyone not directly involved but is wanting to support local agriculture can join as an Associate Member. Finally, a Collegiate Membership is offered to our youth at a low price to get college students and future agriculturalists involved and active in Farm Bureau at the county and state levels.

So, if you are reading this, you probably already are a member. Give some thought to approaching those you know that should be a member and encourage them to join. Maybe a close friend, an employee, or even your son or daughter who is actively pursuing an agriculture degree or trades school degree that will be returning to Sonoma County in the future. If you’re not already a member, join today!

If you have any other questions on membership, don’t hesitate to contact Rebecca Pate, Membership & Advertising Manager, at the office (707)544-5575 or by email at