Team Pennsylvania hosted “Pennsylvania Agriculture’s Economic Impact: Results, Recommendations, and the Road Ahead”, at the 2019 Pennsylvania Economic Development Association (PEDA) Spring Legislative Conference in early May. The session was an opportunity to engage with the economic development community at the state-level and reinforced the messages shared during the regional Results and Recommendations Roadshows through presentation of the economic impact report and a panel discussion. Opening the session, Secretary of Agriculture Russell Redding conveyed Pennsylvania’s critical need to ensure viable market opportunities in the future for the more than 5,000 farms in Pennsylvania’s farmland preservation program. Pennsylvania leads the nation in the number of farms and acres permanently preserved for agricultural production.

Panelists shared the programs and practices of their organizations specific to agriculture and rural development and their thoughts on the need for their colleagues to engage in supporting the industry.

Team Pennsylvania will continue to leverage the partnerships with the PA Department of Agriculture and Pennsylvania Economic Development Association and strategically integrate agriculture as an economic development priority in order to safeguard our current and future agricultural resources.

A special thanks to Secretary of Agriculture Russell Redding; Tom Wellington, Area Director with USDA Rural Development on behalf of Pennsylvania State Director, Curt Coccodrilli; Jared Grissinger, Project Manager with the Governor’s Action Team; Lyle Hosler, Vice President of Lancaster Economic Development Company; and Gary Smith, President and CEO of Chester County Economic Development Council for their participation on the panel.