Cultivating Tomorrow: David Hafner, Martin County Farm Bureau

July 2021 FloridAgriculture eNewsletter

Martin County Farm Bureau, David Hafner, and his wife, Alicia, are rooted in South Florida agriculture. The couple met in college and are proud to call Martin County home where they get to raise their four sons, Tucker (10), Sawyer (8), Easton (5) and Clayton (4).

“To make sure agriculture has a seat at the table, I am very involved in our community and local government,” Hafner said.  Along with being the Martin County Farm Bureau President, Hafner also serves as a member of the Martin County Fair’s Board of Directors as chair of the Agriculture Education Committee, Treasurer of the Indiantown Chamber of Commerce and serves on two advisory committees with the Martin County Cooperative Extension.

Hafner grew up heavily involved in the South Florida equine world, he later branched out into raising livestock such as cattle, goats and poultry.  “2020 saw big changes for my family and our farm,” he mentioned. “At the start of 2020, we lost 70% of our land as our lease was not renewed. This loss of land forced us to sell off our small herd of beef cattle.

Further property line adjustments led to more agricultural losses. Looking at what we had left to work with, and a long drive to take our children to school each day, my wife and I decided to sell the farm and pursue a new property with better opportunities for our family and farm.”

Hafner was a member of the Florida Farm Bureau State Young Farmers and Leadership Group in 2016-2018 and also part of the American Farm Bureau Federation Partners in Advocacy Leadership (PALS) Program where he had the opportunity to purse leadership training opportunities such as the i

“I have really enjoyed taking part in leadership training opportunities- Florida Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers 2016-2018 and American Farm Bureau Partners in Advocacy Leadership (PAL) Program 2019-2022 (I will be the first Floridian to complete the PAL Program). I also love the support of and involvement in youth agriculture organizations. It is this dedication that brought me to Farm Bureau. And lastly, I love the networking and comradery. Farm Bureau is a family and I love that I have friends in agriculture not only in Florida, but across the country thanks to Farm Bureau.

Martin County Farm Bureau has a few great events that we are proud to hold each year. Our Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee holds a fishing tournament- the Buck Wild Fish Roundup- each Labor Day Weekend to raise funds for agricultural education endeavors, our Women’s Committee holds the Winter Vendor and Craft Fair where we collect food and toys for Martin County families in need, and finally, coming into it’s 11th year is the Martin County Farm Bureau 3D Archery Tournament at the beginning of each year which raises money to support our local agriculture organizations; organizations such as 4-H and FFA.

I cultivate tomorrow by learning and sharing the story of agriculture, and by teaching agriculture to our next generation through 4-H. I cultivate tomorrow by building a strong and consistent relationship with my elected officials. I cultivate tomorrow by being the voice of agriculture. I am Farm Bureau and together with the 136,000 members of Florida Farm Bureau we are stronger together.