In Ottawa County, phrases that include the word ‘local’ mean a huge variety of foods – strawberries, cranberries, black beans, apples, blueberries, cheese, eggs, pork, and chicken, just to name a few.
All of these foods and many more are grown in Ottawa County by farmers. And on Saturday, June 9, from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m., Ottawa County Farm Bureau will partner with The Shops at Westshore to put on an event where these farmers will greet the public, answer questions about where food comes from, how it is produced, and why it is produced that way.
Attendees will enjoy a huge variety of product samples, exhibits, live animals, bounce houses, activities, food trucks and can have one-on-one chats with farmers.
“Educating consumers about where their food comes from is weaved through everything we do here at Ottawa County Farm Bureau,” said event chair Joe Austin. Austin is the Assistant County Administrator for Ottawa County Farm Bureau and will use his event-planning skills learned during his time with Muskegon’s Summer Celebration to put together this inaugural event in Holland.
“Ottawa County producers want to tell their story,” he said. “They are proud of what they do and that they have the privilege to feed their neighbors.”
Many Ottawa County residents enjoy the bucolic farm scenery as they drive through the countryside. They love going apple picking and to pumpkin patches in the fall. But in Ottawa County, farming is also big business.
The County ranks third statewide in total value of agricultural products. There are 88 family farms producing blueberries on 5,900 acres in Ottawa County.
The county ranks in the top 10 in dairy, egg, turkey, and broiler chicken production. Michigan ranks second nationwide in celery production, and the largest celery farm in the state is located in Hudsonville. Ottawa County even has cranberry bogs.
There is so much to know about local agriculture, and no one better to tell that story than the folks who do it every day as their livelihood.
Here are the event details:
Ottawa County Farm Bureau is dedicated to defending the rights and economic interests of its members. It has an active Promotion and Education Committee dedicated to telling the story of agriculture. For more information, contact [email protected] or 616.895.5846.