Rising up on her household’s wheat farm in Montana, Kate Stephens ’26 was not all the time eager about farming. Though she was surrounded by a household of farmers, it was not till her grandfather requested her to drive the mix harvester for the primary time when she was 14 years outdated that she fell in love with harvesting.
“I noticed I had the fervour for agriculture and that there was simply one thing about farming on the fields that my great-grandfather as soon as did,” Stephens stated. “[It] was fairly empowering for me to see the evolution of know-how and likewise that I’m a lady with the ability to drive a mix [because] that by no means would have occurred in that day and time.”
Stephens is a fourth-generation farmer who has discovered the ins and outs of the wheat business. However customers typically take with no consideration the unbelievable journey that their meals and style merchandise endure earlier than reaching their tables and closets, Stephens instructed The Solar.
To bridge this hole, Stephens created her YouTube channel, Kate’s Ag – Farm to Style to coach the inhabitants on wheat harvests and what goes on at her household’s farm, which has accrued 114,000 subscribers. On the channel, Stephens interviews native farmers and promotes their merchandise freed from cost.
Stephens stated that she creates content material about farming that goals to be pleasing to look at, whereas additionally serving as an academic useful resource to study concerning the households that produce their meals and merchandise.
“Not all people’s going to look at a video about how their meals is produced, so perhaps there’s another method that I can take form of a mainstream factor that everyone loves and join it again to the farm,” Stephens stated.
The farmers who toil within the fields, the seasons that dictate their yields and the agricultural improvements shaping customers’ meals and clothes provides are sometimes invisible threads within the material of their every day lives, Stephens stated.
“Even if you happen to don’t come from a generational farm, agriculture is related to so many industries, whether or not it’s advertising and marketing, by AI design, there’s a way you will be concerned both domestically or internationally,” Stephens stated. “I wished to form of do extra outreach, training [and] assist youth just a little bit in that method.”
Stephens stated that she not solely desires to bridge the hole between customers and farmers, however she intends to advertise girls within the agricultural business.
“I hope to proceed selling girls, particularly younger girls in agriculture, as a result of it’s positively a male-dominated business.”
In her course of of creating this male-dominated subject extra inclusive, Stephens has collaborated with the Nationwide Farmers Union and Duckworth, the world’s solely clothes firm that’s source-verified with one hundred pc Montana-grown Merino Wool. She hopes to proceed to advertise variety in agriculture and is ready to talk on the Nationwide Farmers Union Ladies’s Convention in Albuquerque, New Mexico later this yr.
Stephens’ efforts to bridge farmers and customers additionally expands to her involvement within the style business, the place she goals to attach prospects with the farmers who’ve a hand in producing their clothes.
At 15 years outdated, Stephens designed her personal style model, Kate’s Ag: Farm to Style, with a mission to attach customers to farmers and educate them on the method of farming, the households who produce the merchandise and the way every thing begins from the bottom. She presently is promoting one hundred pc cotton tote baggage and t-shirts that may be bought on her model web site.
At 17 years outdated, Stephens additionally launched her luxurious purse line, Kate Stephens, with a contact of agricultural components to attach folks with the origins of their merchandise. The purses are manufactured from leather-based, however the physique of the baggage are crafted with cowhide. They’re stitched with a singular steel mix harvest tractor as a reminder of household farms.
Stephens is presently engaged on designing extra merchandise for her Farm to Style model whereas sustaining her media platform.
“Every part begins on the farm — all your pure style merchandise — and agriculture will be related to nearly every thing in each business,” Stephens stated.