Cargill was recognized at a grand opening ceremony of the Pork Education Center at Fair Oaks Farms for its $750,000 contribution that will enable Fair Oaks Farms’ non-profit arm to educate students and the general public on modern agriculture production practices that benefit the environment, use fewer natural resources, and improve sustainability for crop and animal production.
The contribution will be used for the development of interactive, educational kiosks and curriculum, as part of a cafeteria learning center that will be built in 2016. The facility will be used to educate visitors and students about the agriculture industry, sustainable practices and production methods.
Fair Oaks Farms is one of the biggest and most sophisticated dairies in the country, set on 32,000 acres and home to 37,000 cows, divided among 11 different milking operations producing enough milk to feed more than 8 million people annually.
In addition to The Dairy Adventure, Fair Oaks Farms unveiled The Pig Adventure in 2013, which includes a 3,000 sow breed-to-wean production facility and the ability to accommodate tours. Visitors witness sow breeding, gestation and farrowing areas that allow for both safety of the animals and visitors. In 2014, an 18,000-square-foot restaurant including banquet facilities opened to accommodate increased demand from visitors. Eighty percent of the menu includes foods grown or manufactured on the farm. Adjacent to the restaurant is a bakery and farmer’s market that sells products from the farm daily.
“Throughout Cargill’s 150-year history, we have supported local communities in which we have the privilege to operate,” said David Webster, president and business unit leader of Cargill’s premix and animal nutrition business. “Fair Oaks Farms is a shining example of our support for not just the community, but also our customers and ultimately the consumers we serve.”
“Together, we believe it is critically important to reach young students, especially in their formative years, with a positive message about agriculture so they understand more about their food, how it is produced and that we have a safe food supply with many healthy choices available from modern agriculture practices,” said Charles Shininger, managing director of Cargill’s premix and nutrition business in North America.