LEE CO., GA (WALB) - Lee County culinary students hosted an event today allowing the community to sample food from local farmers.
It's an initiative powered by the Southwest Georgia Project to keep money in the community by introducing others to buy local products. Officials say the trend of buying local is growing because of more people wanting organic food but experts say more work needs to be done.
"We live in Southwest Georgia, we are surrounded by farmland," said Lee County farming school coordinator Diaaiyah Salaam. "And yet, no one is connected to the farmers that grow the food. We are trying to bridge that gap between our students and farmers."
U.S. Department of Agriculture official Gary Woodward says it's important that South Georgians stay connected to local product.
"There is nowhere in this nation where people are more intrinsically connected to the land than in Georgia particularly and that certainly is true here in Southwest Georgia," Woodward said. "Farms tend to be smaller down here than in the Midwest. And so, they rely on smaller markets and its very important for them to be able to sell a little close by because it keeps transportation costs lower, makes it a little bit easier on the farmer, makes them more profitable."
Lee County is hosting a National Food Day event at Lee County Primary School tomorrow morning starting at 8:30 a.m.