The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship is relaunching the Choose Iowa initiative. The announcement was made at the 2019 Iowa State Fair. The Choose Iowa program creates support for farmers, drives demand for the products they produce, and generates excitement about agricultural innovation that is happening around the state.
“Iowa farmers work hard to produce healthy, affordable food using sustainable practices. Thanks to their efforts, Iowa produces more corn, pork, eggs and renewable fuels than any other state,” says Mike Naig, Iowa secretary of agriculture. “Whether you live in the city or the country, you can support our farmers by choosing Iowa-grown meat, eggs, dairy and produce at grocery stores, farmers markets and restaurants around the state.”
Farmers, ag products and innovation
The Choose Iowa brand was first launched in 2007 as a labeling program for locally grown products. The program has evolved into a platform to share stories about Iowa agriculture, including farm families, innovations, agribusinesses and the products they produce.
“Agriculture is an important part of our state’s history and agricultural innovations will lead our state into the future,” Naig says. “Iowa has created an environment for ag entrepreneurs and startup companies to be successful. All Iowans can be proud of the established industry leaders, promising new startups and tech-savvy farmers who call Iowa home. These ag leaders create new opportunities for Iowa’s communities, the economy and workforce.”
At the 2019 Iowa State Fair, attendees were able to visit the Choose Iowa booth in the ag building to learn more about Iowa’s ag products and some of the decisions that producers make every day on the farm. Additional information is available at the Choose Iowa website, chooseiowa.com.
Calendar contest winners
Also, at this year’s Iowa State Fair, 12 student artists were recognized by Naig during a ceremony. Earlier this year students from across the state submitted artwork for the 2019-20 Choose Iowa calendar contest, and 12 were selected for this year’s calendar. The calendar was distributed to fairgoers at the Choose Iowa booth.
The calendar artist award recipients (listed alphabetically by last name) and towns they are from are: Isaiah Boonstra, New Sharon; Josie Eldal, Moorland; Kaden Farmer, Manchester; Hannah Heartsill, Chariton; Tyler Hoeger, Delhi; Abigail Hughes, Ottumwa; Dawson Marine, Sommers; Olivia Marti, Waukon; Cheyanne McFarland, Manson; Kenzie Moellers, Cresco; Thatcher Oswald, Manson; and Breckin Stolfus, Sumner.