I Am A Sweet Potato Farmer

BY Tammy Johnston

To begin let me introduce myself, my name is Tammy Johnston. I am from Delhi, Louisiana. I began my journey in the sweet potato world in 2005. I graduated from Delhi High School and attended college at Louisiana Tech University in Ruston, Louisiana where I received my degree in Business Administration with my focus on Management. I knew one thing for certain, I would never come back to Delhi nor would I ever step foot on a farm. I thought I would leave the farm life behind! Needless to say, I did return to Delhi but started my career as an auditor for a rent-to-own company!!! Little did I know there was a bigger plan for this small-town girl. After 12 years of appliances and furniture, I returned to my roots, farming.

As a farmer, you must have a drive and a passion that runs deep. Mine started the day I was born. I grew up on a farm and watched my family’s passion for working the land, growing crops, tending cattle and raising a garden to feed the family. I can honestly say this was one of the best decisions that I could have ever made.

I have been a sweet potato farmer for 14 years.

My Passion              

My area of expertise falls with the H-2A program. This program allows Black Gold Farms the workforce that is needed to plant and harvest vast acres of sweet potatoes in Delhi, Louisiana. It is extremely difficult to find the labor that is needed for the large amount of acreage that we have. This program has allowed us to supplement that shortage and have our crops planted and harvested so that we can Farm Better. As a sweet potato farmer, there are lots of long days, nights, weekends and lots of sweat and even a few tears. But everyone works as a team and we all get the job done! If it were not for this program, we would not be able to accomplish our goals.

This all circles back to our Why at Black Gold Farms– we are farmers, we see opportunity where others may see obstacles.

This leads to our How – our Dig Deeper Culture-Values-Team-Transparency-Excellence-Customer-Passion-Innovation.

And finally, to our What-To be the premier agricultural production, service, and quality organization in the world.

Farm Better Ambassador

I have been privileged this year to be chosen to serve as a Farm Better Ambassador along with five other Black Gold employees. We attended our first Farm Better Ambassador meeting at the home office located in Grand Forks, North Dakota. It was during this meeting that the question was introduced as to what we do for a living and how would we explain. I love the answer that was given, “I am a potato farmer!!!”.  I am a Sweet Potato Farmer is now the answer that I give. This peaks a lot of interest allowing me to tell people about Black Gold Farms and what we do and have to offer. If you ask me what it is like to work for Black Gold Farms and be a potato farmer, I will be glad to say it is a privilege to work with a great team that we have in Delhi, Louisiana and to work for a wonderful organization!!!

I have an awesome extended Black Gold family and relationships for life!!