BURKE COUNTY, Ga. (WJBF) — The school nutrition program at Burke County Schools’ aim is to educate the new generation on the importance of agriculture and the role they can play within the industry.

“Hopefully it’ll be a life-long learning deal, but we need to get it set at an early age and it looks like Burke County is doing a wonderful job of that,” Screven Farmer Joe Boddiford said.

Farmer’s Town Hall Meeting teamed up with Feed My School for the annual agricultural panel discussion about how food production impacts the world around them.

Leaders like USDA State Executive Director of Farm and Service, Arthur Tripp says the future of farming begins with the youth.

“The goal today was really to let them know about the resources that are available, and I think about the farm the school grants– that the United States Department of Agriculture provide to the entire country. It’s important that we have entities in the state of Georgia applying and competing so that the success of our young people will be there, because agriculture is the number one industry in this state,” USDA Executive Director Farms and Service Arthur Tripp said.

After the discussion, students and leaders had lunch where meals were provided by Georgia farmers and their production.

One Georgia farmer says, it’s important to understand what you’re consuming and where it comes from. 

“And they think it comes from Kroger, Publix or whatever your favorite grocery store is and that’s– yes that’s where the ultimate consumer buys it from, but that’s not where it started,” Boddiford said.

Leaders say programs like these provide individuals new avenues to discover.

“One in seven jobs is ‘AG’ related and so it’s very important that our young people have an awareness of that, but they also get involved to ensure that agriculture remains a top industry,” Tripp said.

With the help of state representatives, students in Burke County are paving their way in the world of agriculture.