K-State Agriculture Dean: Research and Outreach Play Role in Kansas Agriculture
University Joins with Kansas Dept. of Ag, Others to Celebrate Kansas Agriculture Week March 12-19
MANHATTAN, Kan. – From producers planting the seed, to elevators storing and distributing the grain, to processors turning that grain into food products – it’s all agriculture. But there’s much more to it than that. Scientists are working to find the most efficient crops and livestock for the Kansas environment, economists are working to determine which crops and livestock provide the best economic returns and extension specialists and agents are conveying that information to those interested in the research and the best ways to use it.
“As Kansas celebrates Kansas Agriculture Week March 12-19, we are honored to partner with individuals, companies, organizations and government agencies in Kansas and across the country and world to determine the best crops, livestock and agricultural management practices for Kansas farmers and other agribusinesses,” said John Floros, dean of Kansas State University’s College of Agriculture and director of K-State Research and Extension. “Our research and extension efforts have been part of Kansas agriculture for 150 years. We are proud to play a role in helping farmers and ranchers produce such an important part of the U.S. and global food supply.”
Kansas Agriculture Week will end with Kansas Agriculture Day on March 19, with activities in Topeka, including “A Dialogue on Kansas Agriculture” and a reception in the capitol. As part of the celebration, the Kansas Department of Agriculture is partnering with Dillon’s food stores, Harvesters – The Community Food Network, the Kansas Food Bank, the Second Harvest Community Food Bank and the Kansas agricultural community to sponsor a food drive, “Neighbor to Neighbor,” which ends on March 19. More information is available at Kansas Agriculture Day.
K-State’s Floros noted that the university is celebrating its 150th anniversary this year. It became the nation's first operational land-grant institution and Kansas' first public university after its founding Feb. 16, 1863. More information on K-State’s sesquicentennial is available.
Growing the Food Supply is at the Heart of Kansas Economy
As Kansas celebrates Kansas Agriculture Week March 12-19, the work and worth of growing the nation’s food supply is told in the numbers. Kansas Department of Agriculture data show:
- Agriculture is worth $33 billion to the Kansas economy.
- In Kansas, there are 52,320,102 acres of land. Farmland accounts for 88.6 percent of all Kansas land. More than 28 million acres in Kansas is devoted to growing crops and nearly 16 million is pastureland for grazing animals.
- The agriculture sector in Kansas employs more than 427,000 people through direct, indirect and induced effect careers, according to information from the U.S. Census Bureau and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.
- Agriculture in Kansas is not just about growing crops and raising animals. The Kansas agricultural sector includes renewable energy production, food processing, research and education, agribusiness and more.
- Kansas is part of the animal health corridor. Between Columbia, Mo. and Manhattan, Kan. sits the single largest concentration of animal health interests in the world.
- Kansas farmers and ranchers are feeding the world. In 2011, Kansas exported nearly $5.3 billion in agricultural products. The top four exports include wheat, beef and veal, soybeans and corn.
K-State Research and Extension is a short name for the Kansas State University Agricultural Experiment Station and Cooperative Extension Service, a program designed to generate and distribute useful knowledge for the well-being of Kansans. Supported by county, state, federal and private funds, the program has county Extension offices, experiment fields, area Extension offices and regional research centers statewide. Its headquarters is on the K-State campus, Manhattan.
Story by: Mary Lou Petermlpeter@ksu.eduK-State Research & Extension News
John Floros – 785-532-6147