Florida Farmer of the Year Fresh Picked

Florida Farm Bureau Federation has named Rick Roth as its 2020 Florida Farmer of the Year. Roth is a longtime, Palm Beach County-based vegetable, herb, rice, sugarcane, and sod producer. He’s also an active participant in local politics, being a member of the Florida House of Representatives.

This Florida Farmer of the Year honor is awarded to a recipient by a panel of judges based upon success in agricultural production, the implementation of sound natural resource management practices, and service to the larger community.

Florida Farm Bureau President John L. Hoblick said Roth has earned the award with his achievements on the farm and as a leader. “Rick Roth is an effective spokesman for his community, giving time and attention to multiple public issues of importance for Palm Beach County residents,” Hoblick said. “He has also been a strong advocate for farm families in the Legislature.”

One of the main successes achieved by growers like Roth in the Everglades Agricultural Area during the past 20 years is the substantial reduction of nutrient loss from farm properties. “We take this very seriously by utilizing crop rotation, improved water control through culverts on all blocks and additional control structures to divide the farm into subsections that provide improved drainage for vegetables while maintaining water tables on sugarcane and sod,” Roth explained. “Higher water tables also reduce soil oxidation.”

Roth served as Vice President of Florida Farm Bureau from 2000 to 2010. He also has been named as one of Florida Farm Bureau’s Champions for Agriculture during the 2020 legislative session.

Roth will be introduced as the 2020 Florida Farmer of the Year during the Florida Farm Bureau Annual Meeting, which is scheduled for October.