Agriculture Commissioner James Comer officially launched the Kentucky Proud Farm to Campus program Monday at the Eastern Kentucky University bookstore.
Comer and EKU President Doug Whitlock cut a maroon ribbon during the afternoon ceremony while standing in front of a display full of new Kentucky Proud products. Some of the items included chocolate horseshoes from Louisville, Ale 8 spicy salsa from Winchester and Mingua beef jerky from Paris.
Freshman Jake Garrison, a member of the EKU Green Crew, began reaching out to Kentucky Proud last year to bring more local products to campus, he said.
It seemed like everyone they approached about using more locally produced items “were all for it,” said Kelley Davidson, president of the Green Crew, a student sustainability group.
The group exists to foster learning and discussion around issues concerning sustainability, she said. There are no dues to join and they are always looking for new Green Crew members, she added.
In addition to stocking more shelf-stable Kentucky Proud products at the student bookstore and convenience store, the Green Crew would like to see locally grown produce used in EKU’s cafeterias and food service systems, Davidson said.
Under the Farm to Campus program, the Kentucky Department of Agriculture will partner with EKU and other Kentucky colleges and universities to help with their buy-local efforts.