Designating this week as “Food Check-Out Week” in Harlan County, Harlan County Judge-Executive Joe Grieshop signed a proclamation on Tuesday.
“I think this is a wonderful project, because we want local grown products to reach our families,” said Grieshop. “These products are more healthy and it helps the economy. It also helps on costs if items are grown locally.”
Grieshop said the average food item moves approximately 1,500 miles, and those transportation costs are added to items not grown locally.
“The bottom line is you can get fresher food at a reasonable price and you and your family will be healthier if you purchase locally grown food items,”said Grieshop.
Present for the signing of the proclamation was Harlan County Farm Bureau Secretary Nathan Boggs. He said, “Food Check-Out Week” was set aside to inform the community locally grown food items in Kentucky are safe and affordable.
“Walmart is now selling locally produced milk,” said Boggs. “This is just a reminder that our hard working farmers are producing safe and affordable items. Creech Apple Farm, above Cumberland, produce some of the best apples you can find anywhere across the nation. We have a garden project at the Harlan County Detention Center, which provides locally grown food for the inmates.”
Boggs said KFB has found that the average farmer is now 55 years old. He said by having this “Food Check-Out Week” KFB hopes to enlighten younger men and women to become farmers.
“We need younger farmers and young people interested in agriculture,” said Boggs. “That is one of the reasons why Kentucky Farm Bureau has Ag education in every elementary school in our county and tries to work in cooperation with 4-H and cooperative extension to encourage kids to think about a career in farming and agriculture.”
Boggs said in 10 years, tens of thousands of farmers will be retiring with no one to replace them.
“This is a big focus of Harlan County Farm Bureau — future farmers and getting people interested in careers in agriculture and farming,”Boggs said.
Nola Sizemore may be reached at 606-573-4510, ext. 115, or on Twitter @Nola_hde