Thursday, March 23, 2006

Oregon Department of Agriculture honors industry leaders

The Oregon Department of Agriculture is celebrating its 75th birthday, but it was people in the state's agriculture industry that got the presents tonight.

The event, held in conjuction with National Agriculture Week, was the Oregon Department of Agriculture's Ag Progress Awards Dinner. Even Gov. Ted Kulongoski made an appearance long enough to present opening remarks at the event.

Kulongoski, who is facing a slate of challengers, even from his own Democratic Party, in his re-election bid this year, praised the agriculture industry for its contributions to the state. Kulongoski spoke about agriculture's economic impact to the overall state economy, but also how Oregon farm and ranch families contribute to the social fabric of the state with their committment to hard work and community.

Kulongoski did not bring up his re-election bid in his public remarks at the Oregon Garden in Silverton, Ore., but he did make note of several achievement in the ag sector during his administration and made a pitch asking for the support of the industry leaders in attendance to keep working with him to build the state's infrastructure and economy.

The department and its director, Katy Coba, also received a gift from one of the honorees. Tomio Ao of Japan, who the department credits with being the key figure in establishing Oregon's seafood export industry with Japan, was one of the award recipients for individual contribution to agriculture in the state. After Coba presented Ao with his plaque, Ao gave Coba an ornate banner honoring the Department of Agriculture's 75th anniversary.

Others honored for individual contribution to agriculture were Dalton Strauss, a Central Point, Ore., cattle rancher, and Dave and Rita Doerfler of Silverton, Ore., for their work with various ag committees, organizations and events in the state.

Bob's Red Mill Natural Foods of Milwaukie, Ore., which produces whole grain foods distributed in the U.S. and Canada, was honored as high-valued products producer.

Sabroso Inc. of Medford, a fruit processor that makes fruit purees, concentrates and other ingredients for national and international food companies, was honored as processor of the year.

Yule Tree Farms of Aurora was honored for leadership in conservation for its work to control erosion and improve water quality.

The Agribusiness Council of Oregon was honored for excellence in education for its Keeping Ag Viable campaign.

Check out the Capital Press website for photos from the event.

I also realized that if I ever decide to get serious about this whole blogging thing, I may have to invest in some sort of wireless device so I can post whenever, and wherever, I go. There really is no escaping the wonders of technology for distribution of information, as Oregon State University President Ed Ray demonstrated at the event. Ray kept some in the audience up to date on the scores from the NCAA basketball tournament, which were delivered to his BlackBerry wireless device.

And here I had to drive all the way home to make a post.

1 comment:

GRT said...

Aha! You thought you could escape!!!

Good to know you're kickin'


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