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State Ag Initiative in Henry County Declared Successful
February 21, 2007 - The Indiana State Department of Agriculture has brought the Agricultural Economic Development Initiative to Henry County. Successfully piloted in 2005 in Southwest Indiana, the Initiative is being rolled out across Indiana.
“Agricultural development is an important part of Governor Daniels’ efforts to revitalize Indiana’s economy,” said Indiana Agriculture Director Andy Miller. “This successful agricultural economic development program will enhance local efforts to keep agriculture a vital component of each economy. Through this Initiative, we have repeatedly discovered that when you put local leaders in the same room with the same goal of improving their local economy, great things start happening.”
The Agricultural Economic Development Initiative is a three-level program. The initiative brings together city planners, farmers, economic development leaders, elected officials and agribusinesses to collaborate on economic development opportunities that capitalize on local, regional and statewide strengths. First, at the county level, the program helps local leaders determine the most strategic opportunities for growing the agricultural sector in their communities. Next, regional groups look at opportunities that can build in other county and local strengths. Finally, a statewide advisory committee connects the activities of the entire initiative.
Henry County has finalized their plan to incorporate agriculture into their economic development plans. Their county strategies include:
*Diversification: leveraging agritourism to increase the economic impact in Henry County *Livestock Integration: communicating the science and impact of modern agricultural practices *Bioenergy: identifying and capturing by-products of the biodiesel plant for value-added business development opportunities in Henry County.
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