A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Quarles to host ‘Restaurant Roundtables’ to hear first-hand from Kentucky Proud buyers

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles will host a series of “Restaurant Roundtables” in the coming weeks to thank Kentucky small business owners and chefs for sourcing food from Kentucky farms and hear firsthand about the challenges they faced during the coronavirus pandemic. “No industry has suffered more during the coronavirus pandemic than those businesses in the hospitality...

Registration now available for third Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit to be held virtually March 3

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s (KDA) Kentucky Proud brand is co-hosting the third annual Kentucky Local Food Systems Summit March 3, Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles has announced. For the first time, this event will be virtual this year. This virtual event is 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. EST and brings together professionals and stakeholders for a half-day of presentations highlighting innovative...

Kentucky Department of Agriculture to host virtual Community Supported Agriculture Fair Feb. 22-28

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s (KDA) Kentucky Proud brand is once again co-hosting the Virtual Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Fair from Feb. 22-28. Kentucky Proud is partnering with Bluegrass Farm To Table, the Organic Association of Kentucky, the Kentucky Horticulture Council and Edible Kentucky & Southern Indiana magazine to host the event online. “When the COVID-19 pandemic...

Quarles announces grant funding opportunities now open at the Kentucky Department of Agricultures

Several grant funding opportunities are open at the Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA), Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles has announced. “The Kentucky Department of Agriculture offers a number of grant funding opportunities to support farmers, restaurants, and research institutions every year,” Commissioner Quarles said. “These grant programs are more important than ever before...

Ryan Quarles: Kentucky needs to support farmers and restaurants during COVID-19 pandemic

Across the nation and around the world, the number of coronavirus cases is on the rise. This alarming trend has raised concerns that the economic lockdown from the spring could return. Leaders in Frankfort can and should be creative in using available resources and developing guidelines to prevent further damage to Kentucky’s economy this winter while also encouraging Kentuckians to follow CDC guidelines. When...

Kentucky Proud brings cheese for a cause into Kroger; partial proceeds to benefit local food banks

A new initiative to help food-insecure families across the state is bringing Kentucky Proud artisan cheese products to select Kroger grocery stores. Kentucky Cheese Cares lets consumers join the fight against hunger by purchasing award-winning Kentucky specialty cheese products at participating Kroger locations. Fifty cents from each unit sold will be used to distribute Kentucky dairy products through...

Kentucky Proud sponsors women’s business conference; virtual event set for Oct. 6, 13, and 20

As part of its ongoing effort to support international trade, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture is sponsoring the World Trade Center of Kentucky’s (WTC-KY) eleVate Women’s Breaking Barriers Conference, Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles has announced. “Women make up about 35 percent of Kentucky’s agricultural producers according to the latest agricultural census conducted by the...

Feeding Kentucky purchases 10,080 pounds of Purnell’s ‘Old Folks’ sausage to aid hunger initiative

Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles has announced Feeding Kentucky has purchased 10,080 pounds of Kentucky Proud pork sausage from the iconic Purnell’s “Old Folks” headquartered in Simpsonville. The purchase is funded by a historic donation from Kentucky Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company to Feeding Kentucky as part of the Kentucky Hunger Initiative last month. “When we started the...

KDA to support farmers’ markets as essential business with Kentucky Proud ad campaign

After holding a digital roundtable with Kentucky farmers’ markets managers, Commissioner Ryan Quarles has announced a new Kentucky Proud social media advertising campaign that will support farmers’ markets during the coronavirus pandemic. “It’s the time of year when Kentucky’s farmers’ markets are opening up around the state,” said Quarles. “After speaking with many farmers’ markets...

Kentucky local food partners to host virtual CSA Fair from April 16-30 in response to COVID-19 pandemic

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s (KDA) Kentucky Proud brand is partnering with Bluegrass Farm To Table, the Organic Association of Kentucky, and the Kentucky Horticulture Council to host the first-of-its-kind “Kentucky Virtual Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) Fair” from April 16-30. “The KDA and local food partners are teaming up to support Kentucky families who have lost access...

Quarles praises Kentucky farm community On National Ag Day; recognizes ag economic impact

Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles is encouraging all Kentuckians to celebrate Kentucky’s agriculture community on National Ag Day and all week long during National Ag Week. “It’s important to realize during National Ag Week that Kentucky’s 75,000 farm families are responsible for more than 352,000 jobs and $45.86 billion of economic output in the Commonwealth,” said Quarles....

KDA responds to students learning at home due to pandemic by generating education opportunities

The Kentucky Department of Agriculture (KDA) is responding to the state’s school students currently learning at home because of the COVID-19 pandemic by generating ag education opportunities for students. “The KDA is announcing two ways that students can learn about agriculture at home during the COVID-19 pandemic,” said Kentucky Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles. “We are extending...

Quarles encourages Kentucky Proud members, local organizations to apply for promotional programs

Agriculture Commissioner Dr. Ryan Quarles is encouraging Kentucky Proud members and local organizations to apply for three Kentucky Proud promotional programs. “Kentucky Proud grant programs help promote the Commonwealth’s local foods and agricultural products,” Quarles said. “As a result, these grants also help Kentucky family farms and agricultural businesses succeed. The aim of these grants...

Kentucky Fruit and Vegetable Conference set for Jan. 6-7 at Lexington’s Embassy Suites Hotel

By Carol Lea Spence University of Kentucky Fruit and vegetable producers will find information aplenty at the 2020 Kentucky Fruit and Vegetable Conference Jan. 6-7 at Lexington’s Embassy Suites Hotel. “This yearly conference provides growers with up-to-date information that will help production, management, business and marketing aspects of their operations,” said Rachel Rudolph, extension vegetable...

Kentucky Proud launches statewide 2019 holiday ad campaign to showcase Kentucky farm products

Kentucky consumers are reminded that “the freshest gift ideas come from Kentucky farms” in the 2019 Kentucky Proud holiday advertising campaign that will launch statewide next week. “Kentucky Proud products make unique, thoughtful gifts from the Commonwealth we all love,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “Buying Kentucky Proud also helps support Kentucky farm families and small...

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...

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....

Nature lovers will enjoy Kentucky Proud Evenings focus on Red River Gorge biodiversity on June 24

The Kentucky Proud Evenings series continues June 24, when Dan and Judy Dourson discuss the great diversity of both common and rare flora in the Greater Red River Basin. The Fayette County office of the University of Kentucky Cooperative Extension Service hosts the free monthly series, which celebrates Kentucky’s rich literary and food culture with author discussions and samples from Plate It Up!...

Mini farm at Elliott County High School helps bring agriculture back to Eastern Kentucky community

By Katie Pratt University of Kentucky A mini farm at Elliott County High School is teaching students business and entrepreneurship skills they can use in their future careers and showing residents how they can use agriculture to improve their lives. The mini farm is a project of Gary Selby, the high school’s agriculture teacher, and Keith Center, an agent with the University of Kentucky Cooperative...