Industry experts suggest that the importance of being informed on the latest industry updates, trends, legislation, regulations and more cannot be underestimated. It doesn’t matter what type of farm and ranch business you run, not keeping up to date with what’s new could leave your business open to all sorts of risk factors or lead to you unwittingly failing to comply with new regulations. Moreover, businesses that aren’t informed of the latest industry updates also risk losing out to competitors, especially if you are a retail or direct-market farmer/rancher and serve the “end customer.” 

The simplest way to resolve a lack of information or education is to be looped into all the forms of communication your industry-based organization provides. At Arizona Farm Bureau this means a variety of channels for information and education. We share four strategies that ultimately support your ag business bottom line, and all are free. 

First, the latest state and national legislation and regulation that could positively or negatively impact your Ag Business is provided through Arizona Farm Bureau’s “While You Were Working” Newsletter.

All business owners are familiar with the need to comply with state and federal regulations, especially in agriculture. However, the biggest problem for many farm and ranch entrepreneurs is the frequent changes to these rules.

Some business owners might regard regulations as just more red tape they must comply with when they’ve already got enough to think about, and they might not keep up with them as they should. However, not abiding by them can have heavy financial and legal consequences, and ignorance of the rules is no defense, that is why keeping informed of any new changes is crucial to your business.

To resolve this, subscribe to the weekly (during the legislative session; biweekly when AZ Legislature is not in session) While You Were Working. To subscribe go to Then to the right of the page and where it says, "Sign Up for Alerts," enter your email and zip code. This automatically sets you up to begin getting the newsletter through your email.

Second, join our weekly Talk to a Farmer/Rancher Instagram Live Sessions to understand what other farmers and ranchers are dealing with and even the strategies they use to deal with challenges on the farm or ranch.

Our Talk to a Farmer/Rancher segments occur every Friday at 10:00 a.m. on our Instagram account, @AZfarmbreau. If you have the Instagram app on your smartphone, you just need to have it opened during the 10:00 a.m. hour on Friday and watch for us to go live. You can even post questions during the live sessions.

One rancher who regularly watches our weekly show said, “I pay attention to who you mention will be your guest for that week’s show and if it’s someone I know I can learn from I make a point to join when you go live on Instagram. I’ve learned a lot so far.”

We save each show to video and it’s always on our @AZfarmbureau Instagram account. Additionally, we share the link to Facebook, so you can find the video there and watch it at your leisure if you can’t make the “live” session. We are now uploading the sessions to YouTube if you are not on the social media channels. 

Third, track government grants, loans, job openings and more by subscribing to Arizona Farm Bureau's weekly Ag & FB News.

Simply log in to your membership account at and in the "communication preferences" section select "Opt-In to Email Communication" and also "eNewsletter."

This newsletter is sent out every Thursday morning to 1,800 subscribers in the agriculture industry, members and non-members alike. 

This newsletter caters to more general farm and ranch news, including information specific to the Farm Bureau, and highlights opportunities for farmers and ranchers to take advantage of an array of options related to their businesses. We often announce industry webinars that feature economic news or general industry reports. 

Fourth, share our Arizona Agriculture videos when your network of family and friends challenges you on your farm and ranch practices.

You’ve probably already experienced pushback from family and friends about the way you farm or ranch or how modern agriculture operates today. You’re not alone. It’s becoming common practice for the public who knows nothing about agriculture to tell us how to farm. 

A recent comment by retired Arizona farmer Pat Murphree got tremendous traction recently on social media. He said, “Why do people who are not farmers know more about farming than farmers?” 

Go to to find a video that will help you explain a practice or issue within our farm and ranch industry. We have a video for nearly every imaginable challenging topic coming from the public including Climate Change and Agriculture water issues. If we don't, let us know, and we'll research the topic and produce an informational video!

Testimonies from our farm and ranch members tell us these tools add value to their business bottom line. Join their chorus. And, of course, as a farm and ranch member, you are already getting our monthly publication, Arizona Agriculture. Maintain your annual membership to ensure you get the magazine without interruption. 

Oh yes, we also host an annual Webinar Wednesday series that averages four to six times a year. We are working to leave no stone unturned in the quest to keep you informed and prepared to handle all the challenges you face running a business. 

Editor's Note: This article originally appeared in the April issue of Arizona Agriculture.