FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
TUESDAY, AUG. 21, 2007
||Nikki Berryman, competitive exhibits coordinator
N.C. State Fair
| Katy Hipp, director of communications
Pines of Carolina Girl Scout Council
NCDA&CS and Girl Scouts – North Carolina Coastal Pines continue to promote agricultural fairs through patch program
RALEIGH - The N.C. Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services and Girl Scouts - North Carolina Coastal Pines are continuing a patch program to teach Girl Scouts about agriculture in North Carolina.
“We are excited to continue working with our state’s Girl Scout troops to promote agriculture through the ‘Homegrown in North Carolina’ patch program,” said Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler.
Girl Scouts can earn their patch by doing activities at farms, fairs or research stations. Activities may include learning about locally grown food, careers in agriculture and the livestock industry.
The program aims to teach youth that agriculture is North Carolina’s number one industry, generating $66 billion annually for the state, and reinforce the connection between farming and the food we eat. The NCDA&CS is charged with inspecting agricultural facilities, marketing agricultural products and running farmers markets and research stations statewide. The NCDA&CS also inspects the state’s 45 agricultural fairs to ensure they meet agricultural guidelines required by state law, and runs the N.C. State Fair in Raleigh and the N.C. Mountain State Fair in Fletcher.
“There has been great interest in the patch program and many troops across the state have ordered it for their girl scouts,” said Robin Smith, director of younger girl programs with the Girl Scouts - North Carolina Coastal Pines. “The troops are excited because activities to earn an agriculture patch can be done by visiting a local farm or county fair.”
“Agriculture is like an heirloom. It needs to be passed down from one generation to another to increase its value,” said Nikki Berryman, competitive exhibits coordinator for the N.C. State Fair. “This patch program ensures that the value of our state’s agricultural heritage will never lose its worth.”
The “Homegrown in North Carolina” patch program is available through the Girl Scouts - North Carolina Coastal Pines. For more information, go online to www.pinesofcarolina.org or call (800) 284-4475.