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Welcome to March's issue!

Agriculture historically has been a driving force in shaping Georgia’s economy. According to the University of Georgia’s College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences, food and fiber production contributed nearly $14.7 billion to the state’s economy in 2021. In this issue, we celebrate Georgia’s No. 1 industry and its importance to our way of life.

Agritourism combines traditional agriculture with tourism, which is Georgia’s second-ranked economic generator. This combination of the two industries encourages tourists to visit Georgia farms and agribusinesses throughout the state.

And what better way to do that than by exploring the Georgia Grown Trails? Stops along these country roads and highways offer hands-on 
experiences and an up-close glimpse of country life. Turn to “Agritourism on the road,” starting on page 28, to learn how these trails offer visitors of all ages the chance to see where and how their food is grown.

Speaking of producing food, in this issue we also visit White Oak Pastures, a farm in Bluffton that’s dedicated to “radically traditional farming.” The farm has been in Will Harris III’s family since just after the Civil War. Today he raises cattle, hogs, chickens and more using the same methods his great-grandfather used a century and a half ago.

Along the way he also has embraced agritourism, offering farm tours, classes and workshops as well as dining and overnight lodging. Read “White Oak Pastures,” starting on page 24, to find out how old-style agriculture is meeting modern tourism in southwest Georgia.

Finally, if all this talk about food is making you hungry, be sure to check out the recipes from Georgia farms in “Fresh from the farm,” starting on page 38, and savor our state’s agricultural bounty in your own home.


Laurel George

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