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Service Organizations Partner to Promote Local Food

A full press release, was printed in the Wetzel Chronicle:

The Executive Director of the Wetzel County Committee on Aging Mary Ash announced Tuesday that a partnership has been formed between the Wetzel County Chamber of Commerce, the Committee on Aging, and the New Martinsville Rotary Club to develop a new program promoting local food.

The partnership will enable senior gardeners and community members to learn more about growing local food. Community gardens will be developed in several locations throughout Wetzel County for the mentoring program. The senior friendly gardens will feature accessible raised planting beds and ergonomic tools for individuals who suffer from arthritis or osteoporosis.

“I am excited to be a part of this partnership”, reported the President of the Wetzel County Chamber of Commerce Don Riggenbach. “While most people recognize the health benefits of growing and eating locally produced food local food can also generate economic growth,” he said.

The economic growth of local food can be noted nationally. A United States Department of Agriculture report found local food sales reached a surprising $4.8 billion in 2008, and are reported to climb to $7 billion in 2011.

“This project will give both seniors and younger individuals the opportunity to learn through service and reinforce the community benefits of local food, reported the President of the New Martinsville Rotary Club Brian Feldmeier. “Both groups will benefit from this experience,” he said.

Funding for this project is being provided by the Wetzel County Chamber of Commerce, the New Martinsville Rotary Club, the Wetzel County Commission, and a grant received through the West Virginia University Center for Excellence in Disabilities.

The Wetzel County Committee on Aging is a non-profit organization established to provide services to the disabled and persons 60+. These services are funded through the federal and state government. Each service has been designed to meet the member’s activities of daily living.