Brantley Gilbert has combined two of his passions this National Farmer’s Day (October 12), highlighting the intersection of military service and American farming.
Teaming up with Kubota Tractor Corporation and Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC), the country hit maker salutes a special breed of military vets who choose to continue serving when they retire — by opening farms and ranches. To do so, Gilbert and his partners hosted a small ceremony and performance on Gilbert’s own farm in Alabama, and gave five of those veteran farmers new Kubota equipment as part of the 2020 “Geared to Give” program.
“We wouldn’t have the abundance or variety of food we have today without our nation’s farmers,” Gilbert said in a statement to press. “I’m honored to be able to share in this effort with Kubota and FVC, and to pay tribute to all our active military and especially to these five veterans who have served our country once in the armed forces and who continue serving their communities today through farming.”
“It truly is the American dream for many – and certainly those returning or starting a new career in farming – to become a self-sufficient farmer, with the right mix of equipment, drive and determination to make tending to the land your life’s work,” added Alex Woods, Kubota senior vice president of sales operations, supply chain and parts. “Kubota is proud to work with FVC and with Brantley and his team to recognize the 2020 recipients and help us power and empower them with the right equipment to help them achieve their dreams.”
“Helping veterans achieve self-sufficiency in farming communities across the country is one of the greatest joys of our work,” agreed Jeanette Lombardo, Executive Director of FVC. “We’re extremely grateful to continue working alongside Kubota to deliver the right mix of much-needed equipment to take our veterans’ farms to the next level; it’s truly the greatest gift, particularly for farmers just starting out.”
It’s not the first time Brantley Gilbert has stood in honor of veteran farmers, as his 2020 Fire’t Up Tour had plans for an ambitious partnership with FVC. Before it was postponed, the tour planned to source a portion of its catering products directly from local farms in communities across the country, spotlighting the value of locally sourced food.
It was supposed to be a first for a country music tour, and the local farmers and their families were even invited to join the band and crew for dinner, as well as the concert. Then Gilbert and a company called Musically Fed planned to distributed whatever was left over to hunger-tackling organizations in each market. That’s the mark of a good farmer — making the best of what you’ve got.