It's Ag Tag Time!
Donation to Ag Tag Fund Helps Kentucky's Agriculture Youth, Farm Families
Op-Ed from Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles

It’s just $10 a year, but that money can help so many.

Every year, when farmers review their farm license plates, or “ag tags,” they have the opportunity to make a $10 donation. That money goes into a fund divided equally among Kentucky 4-H, Kentucky FFA, and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) to support Kentucky’s agriculture youth and other organizations and programs benefiting our farm families.

Last year, Kentucky farmers donated $606,223.11. From that total, each group received $202,074.37 to invest back into our communities for youth development and promotional programs.

During my time as your commissioner of agriculture, I’ve witnessed the generosity of Kentucky farmers. They’ve given during times of need of natural disasters, when a neighbor falls on hard times, or even when a friend needs a little extra help. One of the easiest donations a farmer can give is that $10 when they renew their farm tag. And over the years Kentucky farmers have done just that. They’ve given to help our next generation of farmers – our agriculture youth.

Since 2016, the first year I began serving as Kentucky’s Agriculture Commissioner, farmers have donated $4.3 million to the Ag Tag Program. That’s an enormous amount and gives me a sense of pride that today’s farmers care so much about the future of agriculture in Kentucky they are willing to give of their hard-earned money.

That unselfish willingness to help build and prepare Kentucky’s agriculture youth are predominant features of FFA and 4-H. They are two of the leading youth organizations in Kentucky and the nation. While they work to prepare youth to take on the challenges agriculture faces, KDA works every day to promote Kentucky’s farmers, inviting each resident in the commonwealth to realize the importance agriculture plays in the present and in the future. That future is Kentucky’s agriculture youth. That’s why this year’s Ag Tag campaign theme is “Your Donation. Your Community. Our Leaders.” Funding from your voluntary donations helps all three organizations fulfill our mission to sustain Kentucky agriculture for generations to come.

KDA uses its share of the Ag Tag funds for various programs, such as the Ag Athlete of the Year scholarships, the Kentucky Leopold Conservation Award, Kentucky Women in Agriculture, and Kentucky Agriculture and Environment in the Classroom.

Half of the 4-H and FFA donations are returned to local councils and chapters, meaning leaders in your community are able to use those funds to cover the cost of 4-H and FFA camp and other leadership programs for our youth. County 4-H councils use Ag Tag dollars to provide 4-H camp scholarships and travel for life-changing, educational experiences to enable local 4-H youth to grow as leaders and engaged citizens. FFA chapters were free to use the money to meet the greatest needs in their community, such as FFA jackets for students in need or helping cover travel costs to leadership events.

In the weeks to come, as many of you head back to your county clerk’s office to renew your Ag Tags, I hope you will make the $10 donation. Our record for Ag Tag collections in a single year is $731,627, which was set in 2021. Let’s try to break that record this year, at the same time, help ensure a bright future for Kentucky agriculture.
Five Factors that Make Giving Feel Good
Many of us devote our time, talents and contributions because it’s the right thing to do and we want to make an impact. Sharing our generosity also provides us with an immense feeling of satisfaction.
Giving makes us feel good because it can:

1. Make a real difference. Sometimes “thank you” doesn’t convey how much we truly care. Financial support of a cause enables you to make a powerful impact, and volunteering allows you to see your impact firsthand.

2. Reflect our values. We all want to be part of a community that shares our values. Showing support, either through gifts of time or finances, can extend your personal connection and give you a sense of belonging. It also reinforces your own belief system.

3. Serve as inspiration. Your generosity may inspire others to follow your lead. Engage loved ones in discussion about your passions and encourage them to join you in volunteering or raising funds.

4. Create an everlasting impact. You have an opportunity to leave your mark on the world. Planning a future gift—such as one in your will or trust—helps ensure that generations to come will benefit. It can also help protect the causes you love beyond your lifetime.

5. Recognize individuals. We are often inspired to give back by people who have touched our lives. Tribute gifts are a way to honor those individuals.

Ready to see the benefits of your generosity? Contact Sheldon McKinney at 606-782-4620 or to discuss ways to make a meaningful impact. Or, use the button below to make a donation
Just Two Weeks Until
Give FFA Day!
February 23 is Give FFA Day! Designated as 24 hours during which your support of Kentucky FFA is matched, thanks to the support of Owensboro Grain! Our goal for this Give FFA day is to raise $24,000 in 24 hours, so mark your calendar and help us reach our goal!

Donations made during Give FFA Day are used for SAE and Shark Tank grants, so your gift goes directly back to our members.
We're always happy to hear from you!
Sheldon McKinney
Executive Director
Ruth Ann Myers
Development Officer
Ashley Weaver
Stewardship & Admin Coordinator
Grocery Shopping? You can support Kentucky FFA!
Go to, and sign in. Go to "My Account," then choose community rewards and select Kentucky FFA as your organization. After that, each time you make a purchase using your Kroger Shopper's Card, Kroger will make a donation to the Kentucky FFA Foundation at no additional cost to you.
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