Taylor is the son of an Army veteran who is continuing to serve in the Reserves. Taylor attends the University of Arkansas at Fayetteville working toward his Bachelor of Science in Food Science with Minors in Agribusiness & Horticulture.
Taylor graduated from Bentonville High School where he was an AP Scholar, a member of the National Honors Society, and on the Dean’s List. He was also very involved with extra-curricular activities.
Taylor has worked in the food industry in multiple jobs. His career goal is to continue his education in food law where he wants to work with policymakers and emphasize locally focused agriculture.
Gavin is the son of an Arkansas Army National Guard Veteran serving active duty. Gavin attends the Mississippi State University where he is studying precision agriculture and crop consulting.
Gavin graduated from Harding Academy where he was on the honor roll while attaining perfect citizenship. He was a leader in sports, mentorship, Beta Club, and community service.
Gavin has worked at several jobs in the agriculture industry. His career goal is to advance his education with a master’s degree then return to farming to continue his family legacy.
Congratulations to these Scholars!
Specialty Crop Block Grants Offered for Alternative Selling Methods
The COVID-19 pandemic has created challenges for local food systems around the nation. Arkansas farmers and farmers market managers have met these challenges with innovation and resilience, adapting their operations in order to continue to meet the needs of their communities.
The Arkansas Department of Agriculture recognizes the exceptional efforts our farmers and farmers market managers have made during these challenges. Through the Specialty Crop Block Grant Alternative Selling Methods campaign, the Department invites Arkansas farmers and farmers market managers to submit self-produced videos demonstrating the new selling methods they developed during COVID-19. Ten farmers and farmers market managers will be selected by a review committee and awarded a $400 grant each for their Alternative Selling Methods. Deadline for submissions is September 30, 2020.
The Department will visit each of the selected farms and markets to video their Alternative Selling Methods on-site. The Department will produce a video promoting these methods, which will be housed on the Arkansas Department of Agriculture and Arkansas Grown websites for online training. Each of the ten farmers and farmers market managers will be included as a panelist for a virtual meeting to discuss Alternative Selling Methods.
Arkansas, like many other states and nations, has been affected by COVID-19. Our farmers and farmers market managers struggled to adjust to the closure of wholesale and retail markets such as schools and restaurants. This project will highlight the innovative selling methods developed by specialty crop farmers and farmers market managers to adapt to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Since the spread of COVID-19, changes affecting schools, restaurants, and institutions resulted in the possibility of a revenue loss for numerous farmers and farmers market managers. These situations created the demand for specialty crop farmers and farmers market managers to innovate and develop alternative methods to sell their products quickly to avoid spoilage. These new methods may result in restructuring the business model for specialty crop farmers permanently, attracting new customers with creative, new products, and services. These include, but are not limited to, online sales, farm pick up, delivery services, drive-thru service, and more.
To address those challenges, this project aims
In the early days of the outbreak, a significant increase in demand for food, particularly for fruits and vegetables, was seen. By empowering families to make informed food choices while supporting local farmers, this project aims to strengthen the local economy and contribute to vibrant communities.
The Department is hosting a campaign for specialty crop farmers and farmers market managers to submit a self-produced video of their alternative selling method in action, paying $400 to ten farmers and farmers market managers selected by a review committee. The ten awardees will be featured in a professionally produced video to be utilized by the Department for online training. The ten awardees will also be included in a panel for an online training event, describing their innovative, alternative method and answering questions. The online event will be recorded and available for future reference.
Entry Forms can be found here.
Deadline for submission is September 30, 2020.
The Arkansas Department of Agriculture has collaborated with a number of organizations to create a map of resources for local food during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Arkansas, We Are In This Together. A message from the Arkansas Department of Agriculture brought to you by Secretary of Agriculture, Wes Ward.
Arkansas, We Are In This Together.