A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Ky. Proud Beer Series set for October; adds beer festival at Newport’s Wooden Cask Brewery

The Kentucky Proud Beer Series will be bigger and better than ever in 2019 with a beer festival in Newport and six Kentucky Proud paired beer dinners in October, Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles announced on Tuesday. “Every October, Kentucky’s craft brewers use Kentucky Proud products to brew one-of-a-kind beers to showcase their creativity and honor the Commonwealth’s producers,” Quarles...

Voluntary donations to Department of Agriculture ‘Ag Tag’ program reach second-highest total in FY 2019

Kentucky farmers donated $613,246.37 to the Ag Tag Program in the 2019 fiscal year ended June 30, slightly more than the total for fiscal 2018 and the second-highest total in the history of the program, Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles announced. “The Ag Tag Program has succeeded in providing much-needed funding for promoting agriculture and educating Kentucky’s youth on the importance of...

Mitch McConnell: Hemp legalization opens new doors for Kentucky farmers, processors, manufacturers

Kentucky’s farmers are among the best in the world. It’s no surprise agriculture leaders from around the country are looking to the Bluegrass State and our prospering hemp industry. Right now, hemp is growing in 101 of our 120 counties and $100 million worth of Kentucky grown and processed hemp products are expected to be sold this year alone. Our Commonwealth is proud of our long history with...

Quarles invites Kentuckians to visit 115th Kentucky State Fair; mid-summer showcase runs Aug. 15-25

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles is inviting all Kentuckians to visit the Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s mid-summer showcase at the 115th Kentucky State Fair Aug. 15-25 at the Kentucky Exposition Center in Louisville. “The Kentucky State Fair brings the best of Kentucky agriculture together in one location,” Quarles said. “The fair is a golden opportunity for farmers to talk to the...

Agriculture leaders, hunger advocates promote ‘Double Dollars’ program in news conferences

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles joined leaders of the Community Farm Alliance (CFA) and other partners on Tuesday to raise awareness of a state program that makes more fresh, local produce available to low-income Kentuckians. Kentucky Double Dollars doubles federal SNAP, WIC, and Senior nutrition benefits at 41 participating farmers’ markets in the Commonwealth. This program is a collective...

Kentuckians invited to celebrate Farmers’ Markets Week by visiting markets, posting to Instagram

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles invites Kentuckians to celebrate Kentucky Farmers’ Markets Week by visiting a local market and posting photos from their visit to Instagram in August. Entrants could win a basket of Kentucky Proud products. For the second year in a row, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) is conducting the social media contest to commemorate Farmers’ Markets Week Aug....

USDA to require most cattle to have electronic ear tags; switch to strengthen animal traceability system

The Federal Government will require most Kentucky cattle to bear a radio frequency identification (RFID) tag in the next few years, the Kentucky Office of the State Veterinarian has announced. “By 2023, only RFID tags will be considered official identification,” State Veterinarian Robert C. Stout said. “The U.S. Department of Agriculture is requiring the RFID tags and phasing out metal tags to...

Kentucky Hunters for the Hungry increase amount of venison donated to state’s charitable food agencies

Kentucky Hunters for the Hungry (KHFH) recorded another banner year in 2018 during which the organization increased the amount of venison donated to Kentucky’s charitable feeding agencies. “Kentucky’s sportsmen and women, like our farm families, are great conservationists and stewards of the land,” Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said of the effort. “As part of the Kentucky...

Quarles to lead forums to build relationships between agriculture and manufacturing in Kentucky

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles will lead seven forums across the Commonwealth to help Kentucky farmers and businesses find ways to strengthen ties between agriculture and manufacturing to increase income and create jobs. The third annual series of LAND (Linking Agriculture for Networking & Development) forums will open June 18 and continue through September. The forums are sponsored by...

KDA, UK Cooperative Extension Service will transport exhibits to Kentucky State Fair this summer

Want to exhibit at the Kentucky State Fair but can’t make the trip? For the second year in a row, the state fair, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture, and the University of Kentucky (UK) Cooperative Extension Service will transport your best preserves, crafts, honey, vegetables, and other exhibits to Louisville from five locations across the Commonwealth. “Getting to the state fair is a challenge...

As summer travel season nears, KDA inspectors watching for skimmers in Kentucky motor fuel pumps

With the long Memorial Day weekend and summer travel season coming up, Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles reminds Kentucky motorists that Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) inspectors are on the lookout for credit card skimmers in motor fuel pumps across the Commonwealth. “These devices are used to steal credit card information so criminals can use that data to make purchases that are charged...

Kentucky cattle producers, clothing store ‘Raising the Steaks’ against hunger as part of KDA’s initiative

Kentucky’s beef industry is celebrating Beef Month by “Raising the Steaks” against hunger in May. For the second year in a row, the Kentucky Cattlemen’s Association, the Kentucky Beef Council, and Wildcat Wearhouse are teaming up on a T-shirt to honor the Commonwealth’s beef cattle industry while helping Kentuckians in need. Gov. Matt Bevin prepares to ceremonially sign House Bill 311 as...

Ag Commissioner Quarles announces grants to 25 Kentucky food pantries as part of Hunger Initiative

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles has announced 25 Kentucky food pantries will have additional cold storage space, thanks to grants from the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA). Ag Commissioner Quarles celebrates grant awards to Kentucky food pantries. “We launched the Hunger Initiative nearly three years ago to look for solutions to food insecurity in Kentucky,” Agriculture Commissioner...

Kentucky Proud is on the menu at the Kentucky Derby Festival; events to feature local foods, drinks

Kentucky Derby Festival revelers can enjoy Kentucky Proud foods and beverages in events throughout the annual celebration of the Commonwealth’s signature event. “Kentucky Proud and the Kentucky Department of Agriculture are thrilled to be a part of the Kentucky Derby Festival again this year,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “In the run-up to the most exciting two minutes in sports,...

Kentucky business, government leaders serve up $46K in February ‘Serving Up Solutions’ benefit dinner

The second annual Serving Up Solutions dinner in February raised $46,235 in ticket sales and sponsorships, Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles announced. The dinner benefited Feeding Kentucky (formerly the Kentucky Association of Food Banks), Kentucky Hunters for the Hungry, and GleanKY. Proceeds amounted to more than double those of the inaugural dinner in 2018. “Once again, we are overwhelmed...

Six student-athletes recognized as KHSAA-Kentucky Department of Agriculture Ag Athletes of the Year

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles applauded six Kentucky high school student-athletes involved in agriculture for being named the 2019 Kentucky High School Athletic Association-Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) Ag Athletes of the Year. Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles, left, presents Honorary Commissioner of Agriculture certificates to the 2019 KHSAA-KDA Ag Athletes of the Year. (left...

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles proclaims week of March 4 as Soybean Week in Kentucky

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles saluted Kentucky’s soybean producers by proclaiming Soybean Week in Kentucky the week of March 4. “Kentucky soybean growers produced a record crop in 2018,” Commissioner Quarles said. “Kentucky is recognized as a national leader in the American soybean industry with our own Davie Stephens of Clinton serving as president of the American Soybean Association...

Quarles encourages local organizations to apply for funding from Kentucky Proud promotional programs

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles has called for Kentucky Proud members and local organizations to apply for funding from three Kentucky Proud promotional programs. “These Kentucky Proud programs help raise awareness of the many great local foods that Kentucky has to offer,” Quarles said. “In the process, they also help Kentucky family farms and agricultural businesses succeed. These programs...

KDA approves more than 42,000 acres of industrial hemp for planting in 2019

Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles has announced the Kentucky Department of Agriculture approved 1,035 applications to cultivate up to 42,086 acres of industrial hemp in 2019. The KDA also approved 2.9 million square feet of greenhouse space for hemp cultivation.  “The numbers tell you what you need to know about the excitement about hemp in Kentucky,” Quarles said. “The growth in the number...

Farmers wish Commonwealth a ‘Kentucky Proud’ Christmas by singing ‘Jingle Bells’ in video

The new Kentucky Proud video features people singing snippets of “Jingle Bells” while doing farm chores. The singers all have obvious singing chops, but they also happen to be Kentucky farmers. “We are thrilled with the video,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “This was a great opportunity to showcase Kentucky farmers, promote Kentucky Proud products, and have a little fun in the...