Do you eat? You can celebrate that with Northwest Missouri State’s salute to area agriculture this week

MARYVILLE, Mo. – Northwest Missouri State University is reminding us all of the vast importance of local agriculture with its annual Celebrate Agriculture Week beginning Tuesday and running through Saturday.

The university is showcasing its Agricultural Learning Center with guided tours, a pancake breakfast and Taste of Northwest Agriculture Market. The market will be open Saturday from 8 a.m. to noon. The ALC is located at the R.T. Wright Farm in Maryville.

All events are free and open to the public. 

Completed in July 2021, the ALC is a 29,000-square-foot facility providing facilities for labs, exhibits, classrooms, offices and a kitchen. Swine, beef, dairy, sheep and row and forage crops are all part of the center. The ALC is expected to benefit the region and state by enhancing a wide variety of agricultural opportunities, according to the university.

According to the university website, the School of Agricultural Sciences provides education in and exposure to agriculture, food and the fiber industry. Students may receive a bachelor of science, bachelor of applied science or masters degree. Two-year certificates and minor programs also are available.

“We truly celebrate what agriculture does for the region and for the country,” Dr. Rod Barr, director of the School of Agricultural Sciences, said. “We’re excited for people to see the facilities we have.”

Northwest has teamed up to collaborate with the Missouri Agriculture, Food and Forestry Innovation Center from the University of Missouri. MAFFIC has been engaged in productive partnerships with vendors and producers for this week’s event. The group will actively engage with Northwest students, staff and faculty throughout the celebration.

Visitors can sample local products and savor flavors from every part of the area. Barr notes that vendors will contribute baked goods, jelly, jam, fresh vegetables, wine, beer and other products. The event also will facilitate networking between local producers and potential buyers.

Hy-Vee has partnered with Northwest for a food drive during the celebration. 

“We wanted to give back to the community,” Barr said. “The community is so important to the School of Agricultural Sciences and the university. We’ll try to collect as much food for the community and Ministry Center. We’re grateful that Hy-Vee allows us to collaborate with them to promote the event.”

The university has completed a remodeling project to accommodate the McKemy Center for Lifelong Learning and its new systems management for manufacturing and agribusiness program. 

Northwest will hold a ribbon-cutting ceremony at 4 p.m. Wednesday at the center.

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