The Iowa Department of Agriculture is offering those who’ve never set foot on a farm a chance to do so at the Iowa State Fair. Ag Secretary Bill Northey says all you have to do is visit the Ag Building at the fair. “We’ll have an exhibit that allows folks to stand in front of a screen, and get their picture taken, and choose a scene of agriculture to be behind them. We are calling it ‘Picture themselves in Agriculture’,” Northey explains.

Northey says those in agriculture are right at home at the fair, but he says it’s also provides a lot of insight for others. “It is really a great place for nonfarm families to come and see animals and agriculture and learn more about agriculture,” Northey says. “We’d like to have them come to the Agriculture Building to see that. We have animals giving birth on the grounds, we have the buildings, we have the show arenas.” Northey says nonfarm families can visit and go home understanding a little bit more about agriculture.

Northey says most Iowans are impacted by agriculture in some way and probably don’t know it. “We have a lot folks that have jobs that sell things to those farmers, that work for companies that buy things from those farmers and process it. And frankly , we have a lot of folks who wouldn’t even necessarily think they are in an agricultural job. They are at a bank, and insurance company and an awful lot of the business they do in those businesses are related to the farm or folks that are working with farmers.”

The Iowa State Fair opened today and runs through August 17th.