The Delaware County Farm Bureau and OSU Extension Delaware County hosted Delaware County Commissioner Gary Merrell and county Economic Development Director Bob Lamb for an agriculture roundtable to discuss the importance of agriculture in Delaware County.
The meeting was held on a farm owned by Doug and Cathy Dawson, who raise hogs and grain crops outside the city of Delaware.
With the growing population in the county and increased pressure from developers, land use and infrastructure planning are always a top concern for area farmers. Farmland is a nonrenewable resource, so prudent economic development must be implemented to avoid drastically reducing agriculture’s footprint and economic value.
Delaware County leaders are committed to seeking solutions and best management practices that provide a balance among food production, farmland and a growing population that relies on farmers for their food.
There are 755 farms in the county comprising 141,000 acres. According to the USDA, Delaware County farms produce over $121 million of crops and livestock annually.
Both Lamb and Merrell value the open communication with the Delaware County Farm Bureau and farming community at-large.
“It works because we talk and communicate. The more you get involved in the process and let your concerns be known, the better off we will be,” Merrell said.