Western Palm Beach County Farm Bureau President Ann Holt

20160601

Anne HoltWestern Palm Beach County Farm Bureau (WPBCFB) President Ann Holt wasn’t exactly born into agriculture but she sure has planted her roots deep over the years.

Holt is a Florida native who grew up in a family full of teachers. “My mother, father and brother were all teachers,” she said. When Holt married her husband Tommy and began keeping books for his sweet corn operation in Belle Glade, her world changed. “Farming is a very unpredictable lifestyle,” she said. “Very different from teaching.”

Holt and her husband now have approximately 2,500 acres of sweet corn in Western Palm Beach County along with an operation in Georgia where they grow peanuts, cotton, green beans, soy beans and this year for the first time, cabbage.

WPBCFB and its 1,397 members and volunteers promote agriculture in a variety of ways year-round. The biggest event of the year is the Sweet Corn Fiesta.

WPBCFB partners with the South Florida Fair to host the annual Sweet Corn Fiesta, celebrating the harvest and bounty of 25,000 acres of sweet corn growing in Western Palm Beach County. The family-friendly event takes place every spring and includes live entertainment, corn shucking and eating contests, children’s rides, games and activities all day long. The event is wholly run by volunteers and all proceeds go towards supporting agricultural education and Glades area food banks.

Speaking of the South Florida Fair, it is another big event for the county Farm Bureau. Farmers from Western Palm Beach County band together to help manage the WPBCFB Farmers Market during the 18-day fair. In addition, the revenue earned from the farmers market goes towards two $2,000 scholarships to qualifying students. Also, WPBCFB holds a teacher appreciation luncheon each year to recognize and honor the teachers who give so much to the area’s youth.

Holt’s favorite recipe is creamed corn.

Western Palm Beach County Ag Facts and Economic Impact
1,409 Farms
513,943 Acres in Farms
$10.39 Billion in revenue generated by agriculture and related industries.
168,767 Jobs provided.