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March 7, 2013

~ Governor McDonnell Declares March 17 – 23, 2013 As Virginia Agriculture Week And Virginia Agriculture Literacy Week ~
Contact: Elaine J. Lidholm, 804.786.7686

We all benefit from agriculture; without it, we’d all starve.

It is Virginia’s largest industry by far, contributing $55 billion to the state’s economy each year.

It contributes to our health and well-being and provides green spaces, recreation, wildlife habitat and a high quality of life.

Agricultural exports add a very positive note to the state’s economy, with a record $2.6 billion in exports in 2012 to countries that include China, Morocco, Canada, Switzerland, Egypt, Tunisia, Cuba, Venezuela, Indonesia, Taiwan, Vietnam, Saudi Arabia, Hong Kong and many more.

Yet many consumers don’t know the basics about agriculture. Today the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (VDACS) announced a remedy for that situation: Governor Robert F. McDonnell has declared March 17 – 23, 2013 as Virginia Agriculture Week and Virginia Agriculture Literacy Week and has called the observance to the attention of all citizens. You can read the proclamation at here

Throughout that week, local Farm Bureau members and VDACS employees will read to children in schools from Harrisonburg to Wytheville, Richmond to Lunenburg County. Everyone will read the same book to pre-schoolers through second graders, Kelly’s Big Day. The book walks readers through a day on the farm and also explains how young Kelly prepares her calf Molly to show at the fair. It introduces farm equipment, the types of crops and livestock produced in Virginia, as well as training and showing animals. 

Click here for information on Ag Week, and here for more information on Ag Literacy Week, Teachers, parents and students will find a variety of resources and activities here. Schools that are interested in hosting a reader should contact

VDACS posts all of its news releases on Facebook and Twitter. To receive immediate updates, follow us on Twitter@VaAgriculture or like us on

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