Tuesday, March 5, 10:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.
Governor Mike Pence has declared March Agriculture Appreciation Month in Indiana, an extension of National Ag Day on March 19.
Indiana's Family of Farmers (IFoF) will host 10 food trucks who will serve the public outside the Indiana Statehouse on the Robert D. Orr Plaza as we celebrate Indiana's Agriculture Appreciation Month. The public is encouraged to come out and support these local businesses and learn more about Indiana agriculture. All were featured regularly at the Statehouse Market, a State Personnel Department wellness initiative.
To show their support of that program, dietitians from the Indiana Dietetic Association will also be on hand to answer questions. Indiana FFA state officers will also be available to answer questions about agriculture. Additionally, IFoF Ag Essay Contest Winners will be honored at the Statehouse that day with special guest Lt. Governor Sue Ellspermann.
Hoosier Farmers Celebrate Indiana Ag Month
Jay Hawley or Grandpa Jay, a pork farmer from Clinton County, thinks Ag Day is so important because he feels there is almost no knowledge of where food comes from anymore.
"Wal-Mart hasn't grown any food ever, but some people believe that they are the source of all food," says Grandpa Jay. "There are so few of us left that we need to educate the vast majority of the public who we are and what we do. The farmers used to be viewed as the good guys, but that is changing. We need to tell our story and that we are really great people who do care about the land, our animal, and the environment."
Jay graduated from Purdue University in 1969. He then returned home to farm with his dad. Jay married his wife Sue that summer and they have been farming and raising hogs for more than 43 years. They currently farm about 750 acres and have a farrow-to-feeder pig operation. They keep the pigs from the day they are born until they reach 50-60 pounds. Jay and Sue have three children and six grandchildren.
They started Grandpa Jay's Pork in 2006. "We sold at four farmers' markets last summer which included Noblesville, West Lafayette, Frankfort, and the Statehouse market," says Grandpa Jay. "We have two restaurants using our pork and hope to increase that number. We have a produce that is 88% lean and has nothing added except different spices for different flavors."
Grandpa Jay will be partnered with Little Eataly during the Ag Day celebration. He would personally like to invite everyone to come out and support these local businesses and learn more about Indiana agriculture.
Fun Farm Facts
- Indiana Pork farmers make enough pork to feed 25 million people each year.
- Most milk travels only 100 miles from the farm to the grocery store.
- Beef is the #1 source for Protein, Zinc and Vitamin B-12 in our diet.
- Did you know only 1% of all of the corn grown in Indiana is sweet corn. Most of the corn grown in Indiana goes to produce feed, fuel, grain foods, and consumer goods.
- Soy provides all eight amino acids.
- A hen can lay about 300 eggs each year.
- Pork is the world's most widely eaten meat.
- Fuel Up to Play 60, the dairy industry's partnership with the National Football League, teaches more than 860,000 Indiana school children the importance of good nutrition and exercise.
- Half of the fatty acids in beef are monounsaturated--the same type of fatty acids found in olive oil and championed for their heart-healthy properties.
- Soybeans help restore nitrogen to the soil as they grow.
- Family farmers grow 90% of the corn in the U.S.
- Indiana ranks 1st for commercial duck production.
The IASWCD is a proud member of the Indiana Family of Farmers.