A delegation of ten agricultural producers and officials from countries as far away as Australia completed their tour of Iowa this week.

They visited a host of farms and agricultural facilities as well as communities, large and small. Murilo Betarillo works for an agriculture company in Brazil and says it was a thrill to see how farmers are respected in Iowa.

“I was really impressed with how people here are proud of agriculture and how connected with agriculture they are,” Betarillo says. “People here really give the love for the farmers, for agriculture, so I loved it.” Brazil and the U.S. may be on separate continents but when it comes to farming, he says they could practically be next door.

“Brazil and the United States have a lot of similarities,” Betarillo says. “We are a big country so people in the city, they don’t care too much about farmers. It’s the same in Brazil. People in the big cities, they are not very connected to farmers but people in the agricultural states, it’s strong, like here in Iowa.” The visit included stops on farms and tours of agricultural industries in the Des Moines area as well as Ames, Anita, Bridgewater, Sigourney, Nevada and Ellsworth.

They also took in an Iowa Cubs game in Des Moines, the first baseball game for many of them. Delegates were from Australia, Brazil, England, Ireland, the Netherlands and New Zealand.

(Reporting by Pat Powers, KQWC, Webster City)