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Freeholders Proclaim Agriculture Day - March 15

SOMERVILLE – Somerset County Freeholder Director Patricia Walsh and her fellow board members have proclaimed March 15 as National Agriculture Day throughout Somerset County.  Director Walsh presented a proclamation to Agriculture Development Board Chairman Mark Kirby at a recent freeholders’ meeting.

The Somerset County Board of Chosen Freeholders established the Somerset County Agriculture Development Board (SCADB) in 1983, and charged it with preserving farmland, mediating Right-to-Farm matters, and retaining, sustaining and advancing the industry of agriculture in Somerset County.

The Freeholder Board and the SCADB recognize the importance of agriculture in Somerset County, and feel strongly that this business contributes substantially to the county’s economy, promotes healthier lifestyles through locally-grown foods, and provides societal benefits through agritourism and land preservation.

The Agriculture Council of America, creators of National Agriculture Day, calls for the celebration of National Agriculture Day annually “to recognize and celebrate the abundance provided by agriculture” and because it is believed that every American should:

-        understand how food and fibers are produced.

-        appreciate the role of agriculture plays in providing safe, abundant and affordable products.

-        value the essential role of agriculture in maintaining a strong economy.

Through its efforts in planning, preservation, education and marketing, the SCADB has advanced these ideals and feels that it is very important for the residents of Somerset County to learn more about agriculture, food production and availability, and agricultural career options.

The SCADB will host an art gallery focusing on agriculture through the years in Somerset County for the entire month of March 2016 at the Gallery at 40 North Bridge Street, with the intention of demonstrating the abundance of agriculture and farmland in Somerset County, as well as the many economic and tourism benefits associated with this industry.

The SCADB will celebrate National Agriculture Day throughout the month of March 2016 by hosting various educational events for the public, in partnership with the Somerset County Board of Chosen Freeholders, Somerset County Board of Agriculture, the Somerset County Cultural and Heritage Division, the Somerset County Library System, the Somerset County Senior Centers, Somerset County municipalities and Rutgers Cooperative Extension of Somerset County.

Children ages 5 and up are invited to the Bound Brook Memorial Library, located at 402 E. High St., Bound Brook, on Tuesday, March 29 at 7 p.m. to celebrate the Garden State’s agriculture. The SCADB and the Cultural and Heritage Commission will work with the children to create a work of public art. Freeholder Director Walsh will read exciting farm-related stories. For more information about this program or to register to participate, call 732-356-0043.