Neb Ag front and center at state fair | TSLN.com

Neb Ag front and center at state fair

LINCOLN—Agriculture and the Nebraska State Fair go hand in hand. That's why the Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA) is an active partner with the Nebraska State Fair. NDA staff will be available throughout this year's 10-day State Fair answering questions and assisting at the "Raising Nebraska" exhibit, protecting animal health with livestock inspections, coordinating the Elite Showman Competition, inspecting weights and measuring devices, and more.

"The Nebraska State Fair showcases everything that's great about our state, and it all starts with our number one industry—agriculture," said NDA Director Greg Ibach. "Even this year's theme: 'Grand Champions. Made in Nebraska.' shines a spotlight on all those involved in agricultural and livestock events."

One must-see area at the State Fair is "Raising Nebraska," a series of exhibits that give people a chance to discover more about agriculture and the farmers and ranchers who grow our food. From operating a simulated combine, to taking a stroll on the interactive elevation map, visitors learn about the processes, products and innovations of the ag industry. There are even videos showing how different products like beef, pork, milk, wheat and eggs go from the farm to the grocery store and to the table. NDA is proud to work with UNL Extension on this popular exhibit.

NDA staff will be on hand at "Raising Nebraska" sharing information on various topics including: invasive pests, like the emerald ash borer; Nebraska's Farmers Markets and available online resources; an exhibit to identify crops—many of which can be found planted around "Raising Nebraska:" and choosing the right cuts of meat for your favorite recipes. More information is available at http://www.statefair.org.

"Raising Nebraska" continues to add new features to its exhibition space. This year, a Living Soil exhibit focuses on soil health and the role it plays in agriculture and in urban and residential areas, as well. This exhibit was partially funded by a grant from the Nebraska Environmental Trust.

Protecting animal health is another of NDA's responsibilities at the State Fair. NDA Animal Health Protection staff inspects livestock entries before they enter the fairgrounds to ensure compliance with health regulations. Staff will also be onsite to address consumer and producer questions about animal disease traceability.

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For those with questions about NDA's Weights and Measures focus area, NDA will be discussing how Weights and Measures helps consumers and sellers alike in the marketplace by inspecting product packaging and measuring devices.

"The State Fair continues to be a great venue to support and promote agriculture," said Ibach. "With the 'Raising Nebraska' exhibits and staff presentations, more and more people will be able to grow their knowledge of agriculture as well as the role of the Nebraska Department of Agriculture."

The Nebraska State Fair runs from Aug. 26 to Sept. 5 in Grand Island.

–Nebraska Department of Agriculture