HARRISBURG, Pa., Jan. 7 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- A sculpture made from nearly 1,000 pounds of butter that pays tribute to dairy farm families was unveiled today at the Pennsylvania Farm Show, which will open Jan. 9.
The sculpture depicts a dairy cow, as well as a dairy farmer pouring a glass of milk at the breakfast table with his family members. Sponsored by the Mid-Atlantic Dairy Association and the Pennsylvania Dairy Promotion Program, the sculpture was crafted from butter donated by Land O' Lakes in Carlisle.
"Pennsylvania's dairy industry is the largest sector of our state's number one economic enterprise - agriculture," said Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding. "With more than 98 percent of our dairy farms being family-owned, dairy producers are truly committed to providing high-quality milk for consumers while playing an integral role in supporting our local communities, the environment and economy."
Pennsylvania is home to more than 7,100 dairy farmers and 537,000 dairy cows. Dairy-related businesses contribute $7 billion annually to the state's economy, spending about 85 percent of their income locally, and providing more than 40,000 jobs.
"This year, we are proud to salute the dairy farmers of Pennsylvania," said Vernon Horst, a Franklin County dairy farmer and chairman of the Mid-Atlantic Dairy Association. "This sculpture marks the 20th consecutive year that dairy farmers, through their dairy promotion programs, are able to share a spectacular sculpture at the Pennsylvania Farm Show.
"The butter sculpture is a creative way to bring the dairy industry to the forefront of the media, and is an opportunity for dairy farmers to connect with and educate the general public in a unique way about producing milk, cheese, yogurt and butter."
Sculptor Jim Victor, of Conshohocken, Montgomery County, began crafting the life-size design in mid-December and finished just in time for the Farm Show. He also creates sculptures using chocolate and cheese.
The unveiling was kicked off with a singing performance by Tabitha Weaver, 13, a seventh grader from Windber, Somerset County.
The Mid-Atlantic Dairy Association and the Pennsylvania Dairy Promotion Program are programs funded by dairy farmers to promote dairy products. For more information, visit www.dairyspot.com.
The Pennsylvania Farm Show is the largest indoor agricultural event in the nation, featuring nearly 6,000 animals, 10,000 competitive exhibits and 270 commercial exhibitors. The eight-day show is Jan. 9-16, at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center in Harrisburg. Admission is free and parking is $10 per vehicle. For more information, visit www.farmshow.state.pa.us.
Editor's Note: To receive news releases, media advisories and story ideas, subscribe to the Farm Show Media Service at www.farmshow.state.pa.us (click on Media).
Media contact: Jean Kummer, PA Dept. of Agriculture; 717-787-5085
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture