Did you know that most of life’s necessities – food, fiber, clothing and shelter – start with agriculture? March 14 is National Agriculture Day, which recognizes the contributions of agriculture to American society.
To coincide with this national celebration, Governor Larry Hogan has declared March 10-16 as “Maryland Agriculture Week.” From the mountains of Western Maryland with its dairy farms and hay, to Central Maryland with its greenhouse and livestock industries, to the Eastern Shore’s acres of corn and poultry – Maryland truly grows something for everyone.
“Maryland’s agricultural industry is an essential component of the fabric of our great state, and critical to our future economic success,” said Governor Hogan. “This week is dedicated to promoting understanding about where our food and fiber come from, as well as the vital role this industry plays in our shared history, environment, and quality of life."
From poultry and beef, to corn and fresh produce, Maryland farmers are working harder than ever to meet the needs of American consumers and others around the world. New technology has allowed farmers to meet these demands more efficiently and environmentally friendly than ever before. Today, each American farmer feeds more than 165 people. Agriculture is the nation's top export and vitally important in sustaining a healthy economy.
In Maryland, one-third of the land mass – over 2 million acres – is farmland. In 2018, the top commodity sectors were poultry (broilers), grain, greenhouse and nursery, and dairy. For more interesting facts about Maryland agriculture, see the AgBrief.
The Maryland Department of Agriculture shares 10 suggestions to help citizens recognize National and Maryland Agriculture Week: