Agriculture in Washington first developed during a period of agrarian revolt. Populism, in its many forms, took root in our state through political organizations such as the Grange – an agriculturally based fraternal organization that played a dominant role in the politics of the state prior to WWII. Both agriculture and politics were shaped by the replacement of the family farm with corporations controlled by national and international financial interests. The story of the industrialization of agriculture provides deep insight into the political economy of our state and helps explain how our nation’s food production and distribution system was shaped.
government, public policy, agriculture