President’s Letter

Greetings!  In partnership with the Polk County Extension Office, we held our bi-annual Polk County Ag Tour on September 23.  Themed  “Rural-Urban Ag Connections in Polk County” the tour provided attendees with insight into the benefits of living and recreating in a county that has strong ties to traditional agricultural production and also introduced agriculture production in non-traditional urban environments.  Attendees learned about local beef, honey, and blueberry production; visited the RISE Institute’s student-run Urban Farm in downtown Lakeland; got a sneak peek at the agriculture stations at the new Florida Children’s Museum; visited an exotic tropical plant farm and food forest; and learned about planned agriculture education expansions in the county. Our special thanks to all of our tour hosts.

Lightsey  Cattle Company      The RISE Institute Urban Farm Bee Haven

Catapult Lakeland         Braswell Blueberry Farm      The Florida Children’s Museum

Downtown Lakeland Farmers Market     Central Florida Youth in Ag           Sow Exotics

We held our virtual 80th Annual Membership Meeting and Political Forum on October 6 and appreciate all those who participated. Our special thanks to the political candidates who attended to share their platforms with our members. We also want to thank the following sponsors:  

Ag America Lending

Central Florida Development Council

Crosby & Associates 

Cutrale Citrus Juices USA

The Mosaic Company

During the business portion of our Annual Meeting, the following board members were re-elected to additional three-year terms:

Nelson Kirkland

Michael Matteson

Christian Spinosa

John Strang

Kevin Updike

Newly elected to the board of directors for three-year terms are:

Brett Costine

Rob Teston

Finally, we want to recognize Brett Costine, our outgoing Young Farmer and Rancher Chair, for his great service in the past two years.  Thank you, Brett!



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Leigh Ann Wynn


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