Pennsylvania is proud to host the largest indoor agricultural exposition under one roof in the nation, though it will look a little different this year. The event showcases the quality and breadth of Pennsylvania’s agriculture industry and the people who make it thrive. The show offers visitors a tiny slice of the industry that employs nearly half a million people and contributes $185 billion to Pennsylvania’s economy every year.
Out of an abundance of caution, a tough decision was made to take a year to lie fallow. Rather than an in-person Farm Show, Pennsylvania agriculture will be celebrated virtually for 2021 as the agricultural community prepares for a productive future.
The 2021 show will look at strengths and where it is needed to invest together in order to grow. The show considers what has become crystal clear during the pandemic – that agriculture is essential for life, and that the farming community is resilient and innovative.
There will be a focus on agricultural awareness, education, and literacy while highlighting the interconnectedness of our food chain. Bringing to light that agriculture is virtually everywhere. A story will be told through technology as a future is envisioned and prosperity cultivated.
Virtual events will be focused on education and awareness for both the general public and the agriculture industry. Any competitive ag events that are held virtually will not require the purchase of an animal.
The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is looking for content and organizations to be a part of the Farm Show Trail Map. Click here for information on participating in this unique event. This opportunity is great for organizations, businesses, and farms across the commonwealth to share their knowledge, products, and foods with Pennsylvanians.
The department is open to all types of educational videos about agriculture, its diversity, and opportunities in the industry. There is also an opportunity to submit information for online demonstrations, content, and sales. Just click on this link to Submit your content here.
NATURE NUGGET: Pennsylvania agriculture is a highly important sector in the state, generating income and providing many jobs. Almost 70 percent of Pennsylvania’s farm income comes from livestock product sales. Milk is the most important commodity, with farmers providing 5.5 percent of the nation’s supply. Pennsylvania is the fifth largest milk-producing state. The Keystone State ranks first nationally in mushroom production – farmers annually produce more than 570 million pounds of mushrooms. Other important commodities include beef cattle, hogs, chicken eggs and broilers, and also winter wheat, potatoes, oats, rye, barley and a variety of vegetable crops. Farmers also grow apples, cherries, peaches and grapes.
“Porcupine Pat” McKinney is environmental education coordinator for the Schuylkill Conservation District and provides programming for people of all ages with an emphasis on schools, public programming and nature center development. “Porcupine Pat” hails from Marion, Ohio and has a BS with Distinction in Natural Resources – Environmental Interpretation from Ohio State. He is a recipient of the prestigious Sandy Cochran Award for Excellence in Natural Resources Education from the PA Forestry Association, the Schuylkill Pride Award, and the PAEE “Outstanding Environmental Educator Award.”