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GROWMARK ANNOUNCES 2014 ESSAY CONTEST THEME
Source: GROWMARK news release sent via AgPR--the news distribution service for agriculture

The theme for the 2014 GROWMARK Essay Contest is: "Promoting Sustainability and Conservation of Natural Resources." The contest is open to all high school FFA members in Illinois, Iowa, and Wisconsin.

This is the 21st year for the program, sponsored by the GROWMARK System and FS member cooperatives, in conjunction with state FFA leaders, to help young people develop their writing skills, learn about current issues affecting agriculture, and understand the unique role of cooperatives.

This year, students will focus on three questions: What does sustainability mean? Why should farmers be concerned with conservation and sustainable practices? What role do cooperatives play in this effort?

Essays should be approximately 500 words, typed and double-spaced. The postmarked entry deadline for Iowa FFA members is February 14. The postmarked entry deadline for Illinois and Wisconsin FFA members is March 14. Additional program details have been sent to agriculture teachers and are online at www.growmark.com (click on Our Commitments/Youth & Young Farmers/Essay Contest).

"Conserving our natural resources is important for the future of agriculture," said Karen Jones, GROWMARK corporate relations and cooperative education specialist. "We are looking forward to reading the thoughts of the next generation on how our industry can become more sustainable."

Each state's winner earns a $500 award and the winner's FFA chapter receives a $300 award. Four runners-up per state each win $125 awards.

The program is offered each year and many agriculture teachers use it as part of their class curriculum. Past topics have included renewable fuels, biotechnology, and the cooperative principles.


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