The Golden LEAF Foundation held an agriculture roundtable at the University of Mount Olive’s student farm to highlight the state’s agribusiness and farming industries. The event focused on programs supported by the Foundation that help expand markets for farmers and offer training to students in a career related to agriculture. The roundtable featured officials from the Northeast Regional School of Biotechnology and Agriscience, the University of Mount Olive, and the North Carolina SweetPotato Commission.
Golden LEAF has provided four grants totaling $418,903 for agriculture programs at the University of Mount Olive. Early grants supported the university’s Agribusiness Institute which helps farmers, agribusiness, and students. In 2017, Golden LEAF grant funding helped to construct the Sandy Maddox Agriculture and Education Building for classroom, lab, and meeting space at the university’s Kornegay Student Farm.
Golden LEAF has supported research, technology, and marketing campaigns to boost agribusiness and improve crops such as the sweet potato. North Carolina is the number one producer of sweet potatoes in the nation. The NC SweetPotato Commission Foundation, Inc., has received five Golden LEAF grants. These awards totaling nearly $1.3 million have provided support for expanding and increasing markets, creating new sweet potato products, and distributing and manufacturing sweet potato products.
One regional early college high school has built its reputation on showcasing careers in agribusiness and agriscience to its students. At the Northeast Regional School of Biotechnology and Agriscience in Jamesville, NC, students in Martin, Pitt, Tyrrell and Washington counties have rigorous graduation requirements that include a 130-hour internship, an applied agriculture project, and participation in Future Farmers of America (FFA). Golden LEAF has provided two grants totaling more than $350,000 to the school for technology and technology support.
The Golden LEAF Foundation is proud to work with these organizations to help build the number of people interested in farming and agribusiness and expand the opportunities for those in the already in the industry.
“North Carolina is an agribusiness powerhouse. Golden LEAF is committed to helping grow the industry through education and training programs and by supporting programs that boost the sales of agriculture products. We were excited to hear from partners doing the work to support this vital industry.”
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