Over 19,000 plates sold since program started in 2012
By Diego Flammini, Farms.com
The California Department of Food and Agriculture (CDFA) awarded over $200,000 to five programs that combine agriculture and education across the state.
The availability of these funds is made possible by the 2014 California Special Interest License Plate grant program. “CalAgPlates” (California Agricultural Plates) are available through the California Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV).
Funded projects include a farm-to-school initiative, agriculture tours to bring attention to careers in the agriculture industry, seminars, and even programs for elementary school children to show them the impact of agriculture on daily life from an early age.
“Agricultural education is fundamental to the appreciation of how agriculture and food production touches every Californian,” said CDFA Secretary Karen Ross in a press release. “The projects being funded are great examples of how to connect students and consumers to agriculture and the many career possibilities within the food and agricultural system.”
The total amount being dispersed to the winning programs is $215,670, and the recipients include:
Centennial Farm Ag Education
Centennial Farm Foundation
Their three acre crop and livestock farm provides education for children and has been doing so for 25 years. The programs focus on where food comes from, the role agriculture has in daily life, and basics about California’s ag industry. For their efforts, they received $25,000.
Increasing Agricultural Career Opportunities Awareness by Student Tours
Stanley W Strew Educational Funds
As baby boomers continue to exit the workforce, more career opportunities will be available. The program wants to showcase the opportunities by providing two one-day tours. One near Butte College and one near Woodland College. The tours will include farming and agribusiness stops and feature guest speakers for the students to interact with. They’ve received $7,010 in funding.
California’s largest commodity in 2013 was almonds with a production value of over $5 billion.