Agriculture Appreciation Month kicks off Tuesday at Indiana Statehouse

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CONTACT
Duane Brodt
Manager of Media Relations
National FFA Organization
DBrodt@FFA.org
888-332-2589

Jeannie Keating
Manager of Media Relations
Indiana State Department of Agriculture
317-696-9695
JKeating@isda.in.gov

Kristen Fuhs Wells
Director of Communications
Indiana Humanities
317-638-1500, Ext. 125
KWells@IndianaHumanities.org

INDIANAPOLIS (Thursday, Feb. 28, 2013/National FFA Organization) – March is Agriculture Appreciation Month in Indiana.

Gov. Mike Pence’s proclamation kicks off a month-long effort to raise awareness about the importance of Indiana agriculture and the critical role Hoosier farmers play in providing safe, nutritious and sustainable food throughout the U.S. and beyond its borders.

Starting at 10:30 a.m. Tuesday at the Indiana Statehouse, Indiana’s Family of Farmers will host a celebration for state lawmakers, Hoosier farmers and the general public.

Ten food trucks regularly featured at the Statehouse Market, a state Personnel Department wellness initiative, will serve lunch to the public outside the Statehouse on Robert D. Orr Plaza until 1:30 p.m. All are encouraged to come out and support these local businesses and learn more about Indiana agriculture. A contingent of Indiana FFA members will also interact with the public and share information about agriculture in Indiana, the importance of agricultural education in Hoosier schools and today’s FFA.

Flyte the Owl, the official mascot of the National FFA Organization, will help entertain the crowd throughout the luncheon and reception.

At 11:45 a.m. an Agriculture Appreciation Month luncheon reception and special presentation will take place in the Statehouse North Atrium for legislators and staff. Lt. Gov. Sue Ellspermann, who serves as the state’s secretary of agriculture and rural development, will announce winners of the 2013 Agriculture Essay Contest. Indiana FFA president Cameron Mann will read Gov. Pence’s official proclamation.

Sponsored by Indiana’s Family of Farmers and Indiana Humanities, 2013 Agricultural Essay Contest entrants were asked to describe how Indiana farmers nourish Hoosier families, livestock and farming soil. More than 500 students from throughout Indiana in grades four through 12 submitted essays this year.

Tuesday’s celebration of agriculture in Indiana is a precursor to National Ag Day, which is March 19.

Indiana’s Family of Farmers grows the grain, produce and meat Hoosiers consume every day. We believe that quality farming means quality food that is good for you, your family and the environment. Food for your family, from our family. More at www.indianafamilyoffarmers.com.

The National FFA Organization provides leadership, personal growth and career success training through agricultural education to 557,318 student members in grades seven through 12 who belong to one of 7,498 local FFA chapters throughout the U.S., Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands.

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About National FFA Organization
The National FFA Organization is a national youth organization of 557,318 student members as part of 7,498 local FFA chapters in all 50 states, Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. The FFA mission is to make a positive difference in the lives of students by developing their potential for premier leadership, personal growth and career success through agricultural education. The National FFA Organization operates under a federal charter granted by the 81st United States Congress and it is an integral part of public instruction in agriculture. The U.S. Department of Education provides leadership and helps set direction for FFA as a service to state and local agricultural education programs. For more, visit the National FFA Organization online at www.FFA.org, on Facebook, Twitter and the official National FFA Organization blog.

About Indiana’s Family of Farmers
Indiana's Family of Farmers are among the nation's top producers of grains, produce and meats that Hoosiers each every day. Quality farming means quality food that is nutritious for Hoosier families and the environment. For more, visit www.IndianaFamilyOfFarmers.com.

About Indiana Humanities
Indiana Humanities connects people, opens minds and enriches lives by creating and facilitating programs that encourage people to think, read and talk. Learn more at www.indianahumanities.org.