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Genesee County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan

Genesee County Agricultural and Farmland Protection Plan

Genesee

Genesee County: Agricultural Development Plan APPENDIX C: AGRICULTURAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT CASE STUDIES FOR GENESEE COUNTY, NEW YORK Copyright©, 2001: Agricultural & Community Development Services, Inc, Columbia, MD

APPENDIX C: AGRICULTURAL DEVELOPMENT CASE STUDY SUMMARIES Fauquier County Virginia Agricultural Development Program The goal/mission of the Fauquier County Agricultural Development Program is to promote the agricultural industry, increase the economic viability of farming and advise the County Board of Supervisors on matters affecting the agricultural economy and its development. The Agricultural Development Officer answers to the County Administrator and an Agricultural Advisory Committee, chaired by a member of the County Board of Supervisors. The program is less than 2 years old and the current Agricultural Development Officer has been in position since May this year. The Agricultural Development Officer is currently working with the Advisory Committee in the development of an agricultural strategic plan for the County. The plan will focus on 3-4 action items. Their website www.co.fauquier.va.us/services/farm/index.html highlights the Agricultural Advisory Committee’s agenda, farm product directory, special events like the fall farm tour, and farm land report. The fall farm tour was just held, which brought in 10,000 to 11,000 farm visitors, which was a 30% increase over last year. The farm tours had an educational component where the tourist had an actual task to “learn by doing” to experience the farm and not just see it. The tour offered every aspect of the industry from beef and dairy operations to emu and lama operations. The participating farmers sold lots of product direct during the tour and the emu farms sold out all of their meat products. Fauquier County’s biggest agriculture sector is in the production of feeder calves. Feeder calves are sold to feedlots in the Midwest and the meat product returns to the east. The Agricultural Development Officer wants to evaluate the opportunities for vertically integrating the process in his County to keep the added value local. The Agricultural Development Officer has started a marketing group of agricultural producers and industry representatives to conduct the necessary research to identify new marketing opportunities and to test them. They soon learned that they did not have the necessary volume to enter some of the niche markets and as a result, identified the need to establish marketing alliances. As a result, new market alliances have been established with growers of similar crops. The close proximity of Fauquier to the major population centers offers readily available niche markets and opportunities for direct marketing. However, the downside of that is the need to educate the newcomers on what farming is all about. Contact: Peter Mitchell Agricultural Development Officer (540) 341-7950, Ext. 23 Copyright©, 2000: Agricultural & Community Development Services, Inc, Columbia MD 1

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