HARRISBURG, Pa., Aug. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- Agriculture Secretary George Greig today recognized August as "Produce Month" during a visit to a Scranton area farmers market. At the market, farmers donated more than one ton of locally grown produce to help feed area residents in need.
Cooperative Farmers Market of Scranton vendors and Pennsylvania Vegetable Growers Association members donated fresh produce including, broccoli, peaches, and sweet corn to the Weinberg Northeast Pennsylvania Regional Food Bank. The food will be distributed to emergency food assistance agencies in Luzerne, Lackawanna, Susquehanna and Wyoming counties.
"Governor Corbett proclaimed August as Produce Month to pay tribute to Pennsylvania's farmers, who grow an abundant supply of healthy and delicious produce," said Greig. "We are fortunate to have an industry dedicated to ensuring all Pennsylvanians can enjoy our bounty, and I thank the growers for their generous donations."
Greig said all of the produce donated is PA Preferred®. PA Preferred is the official branding program for products made or grown in Pennsylvania.
"Buying PA Preferred products helps support our farmers and businesses, while making investments in local economies and keeping Pennsylvania growing. PA Preferred makes a difference," added Greig.
Whether shopping at farmers markets, farm stands or grocery stores, consumers should always look for the commonwealth's official PA Preferred logo. The gold checkmark in a blue keystone ensures consumers that they are choosing products made or grown in the state. For more information, visit www.papreferred.com.
Pennsylvania's produce industry output is valued at $209 million, and fruit and vegetable growers produce nearly 510,000 tons of produce for fresh market and processing each year. Pennsylvania ranks first, nationally, in the production of mushrooms; fourth in apples and grapes; fifth in peaches, pears and pumpkins; sixth in fresh market strawberries, snap beans for processing and tart cherries; and eighth in fresh market cantaloupes and sweet corn.
Aug. 5-11 is "National Farmers Market Week." For a list of farmers markets in Pennsylvania searchable by county, product or market name, visit www.agriculture.state.pa.us and click on "Online Services" and then "Farmers Markets and Farm Stands."
Editor's Note: Producers who donated vegetables at today's event include:
- B&R Farms, Ringtown, Schuylkill Co.
- Brace's Orchard, Dallas, Luzerne Co.
- Broyan's Farm Market, Nescopeck, Luzerne Co.
- Covered Wagon Produce, Wapwallopen, Luzerne Co.
- Farmer Bucky's Produce, Clarks Summit, Lackawanna Co.
- Fred Eckel Sons, Clarks Summit, Lackawanna Co.
- Furmano Foods, Northumberland, Northumberland Co.
- Heller's Orchard, Wapwallopen, Luzerne Co.
- Indian Oven Farms, Falls, Wyoming Co.
- Jim's Farm Produce, Dalton, Lackawanna Co.
- Kemmerer Farms, Berwick, Columbia Co.
- Miller Family Farm, Scott Township, Lackawanna Co.
- Sernak Farms, Weatherly, Carbon Co.
- Stehr Bros., Klingerstown, Schuylkill Co.
- Summit Produce, Clarks Summit, Lackawanna Co.
Media contact: Samantha Elliott Krepps, 717-787-5085
SOURCE Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture