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Press Contact Information

News media seeking more information on press releases, interviews, requests for comment, or other information related to department programs, initiatives, or priorities should contact the department Press Secretary.

Shannon Powers, Press Secretary

Phone: 717-603-2056 

General Information & Requests:

If you are a member of the general public or industry looking for more information on department programs, to contact a bureau or program, or report a complaint, please contact the general number or submit an inquiry on our Contact Page.

General phone: 717-787-4737

Press Website

Agriculture Secretary Invites Public to Taste Pennsylvania’s Best at PA Preferred® Reception Kicking Off 2024 Farm Show

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding invites Pennsylvanians to taste the finest Pennsylvania-produced food and drinks while connecting with the producers at the 108th PA Farm Show’s PA Preferred® Reception. The Friday, January 5th reception will be the official kickoff for the 2024 Farm Show, the Pennsylvania State Fair™.

2024 PA Farm Show National Anthem Contest Winners Announced; Schuylkill County Youth Wins Most Votes

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today announced the singers who will perform the "Star-Spangled Banner" daily and at special events during the 2024 Farm Show. Thirteen-year-old Thea Sten, of Schuylkill Haven in Schuylkill County, received the most social media votes in the 2024 PA Farm Show National Anthem contest, 'Oh, Say Can You Sing?'. She will sing live at the 108th Farm Show Opening Ceremony at 10 a.m. on Saturday January 6, 2024.

Shapiro Administration Kicks Off Trees for Troops Weekend, Encouraging Pennsylvanians to Brighten Holidays for Servicemembers By Donating a Tree

Today, Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding and Brig. Gen. Laura McHugh, Department of Military and Veterans Affairs deputy adjutant general-Army helped kick off the 2023 Trees for Troops donation weekend at Strathmeyer Christmas Trees in York, encouraging Pennsylvanians to donate Christmas trees to active-duty military and their families.

Agriculture Department Warns Consumers to Discard “Hilltop Meadow Farm” Brand Contaminated ‘60 Day Aged Pepper Jack Raw Milk Cheese’

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture warns that consumers should discard “Hilltop Meadow Farm” brand ’60 Day Aged Pepper Jack Raw Milk Cheese’ with sell by dates of 9/21/2023 or earlier. Testing of this cheese confirmed the presence of Listeria monocytogenes bacteria.

Shapiro Administration Awards $605,398 in PA Farm Bill Grants to Strengthen Child Nutrition, Hands-on Ag Education

 Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today announced PA Farm Bill Farm-to-School Grants of $605,398 to 56 schools, school districts, and childhood education centers in 28 counties. Grants of up to $15,000 will support projects aimed at improving access to healthy, local food and increasing hands-on learning for children in pre-kindergarten through eighth grade.

First Lady Lori Shapiro Tours Mother Earth Organic Mushrooms, Highlights Pennsylvania’s Role as a National Agriculture Industry Leader

Pennsylvania First Lady Lori Shapiro joined Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding for a tour of Mother Earth Organic Mushrooms' farm in West Grove, among the businesses making Pennsylvania number one nationally in organic mushroom production. Shapiro Administration investments are feeding continued growth in the nation-leading industry through targeted investments to meet challenges unique to mushroom, and specifically organic mushroom production.

Shapiro Administration Tours Skyline Pastures Farm, Highlighting PA Investments in Success of Military Veteran Farmers

Today, Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding and Deputy Adjutant General for Veterans Affairs Brigadier General Maureen Weigl toured Skyline Pastures in Mohrsville, Berks County, a veteran-owned farm that received $5,000 in 2022 to fund erosion control and a livestock-watering system through Pennsylvania Veterans In Agriculture Grants.

Ag Department Invites Proposals for $1 Million in Grants to Boost Sales and Quality of Pennsylvania Vegetable, Fruit, Nut, Nursery Crops

The Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture is accepting proposals for $1 million in grants to increase the competitiveness of the state’s horticultural specialty crops including fruit, nut, vegetable, nursery, honey, and floral products. Projects will be funded through the U.S. Department of Agriculture Specialty Crop Block Grant program, which is administered by the state.

Governor Shapiro Signs Bill Creating PA Preferred Organic Brand to Spur Consumer Confidence, Feed Continued Growth for PA Farmers

Governor Josh Shapiro signed House Bill 157 yesterday, officially creating a PA Preferred Organic™ brand for PA-grown organic agricultural products. Products bearing the new PA Preferred Organic label will meet both U.S. Department of Agriculture standards for organic production, and the PA Preferred® program’s rigorous standards for goods grown in Pennsylvania.

Shapiro Administration Awards $268,000 to 12 Nonprofits to Grow Sales, Exports of Pennsylvania Agricultural Products

Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today announced $268,000 in matching funds to 12 nonprofits to grow domestic sales and exports of Pennsylvania agricultural products. Grants will reimburse Pennsylvania nonprofit associations up to 50% of the cost of promotional and consumer education projects promoting beef, dairy, hardwoods, and vegetables, as well as projects promoting regional tourism, increasing local markets for fresh food, and growing the consumer base for PA products.

Shapiro Administration Tours Pittsburgh Urban Farm to Announce $736,000 Investment in 26 Projects to Improve Infrastructure, Create Economic Opportunities in PA Cities

Today, Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding toured Out of the End, a Pittsburgh-based urban farm, to announce $736,145 in grants to support projects that will increase capacity to produce fresh food and create economic opportunity in urban Pennsylvania neighborhoods. Funding through the Pennsylvania Farm Bill's Urban Agriculture Infrastructure Grant Program and a $200,000 donation from The GIANT Company will support 26 projects in 11 counties across the state.

2024 PA Farm Show Asks Pennsylvanians, ‘Oh, Say, Can You Sing?’

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today invited Pennsylvania singers to enter "Oh, Say, Can You Sing?", a star-spangled sing-off to win a chance to sing live at the 2024 PA Farm Show — the Pennsylvania State Fair™. Each morning, from January 6-13, the Farm Show will start by featuring an individual or group singing the national anthem live. Top vote-getters may also be selected to sing at special events such as the Opening Ceremony on January 6.

Governor Shapiro Signs Bipartisan Bill to Protect Pennsylvania Dogs, Consumers, Communities

Governor Josh Shapiro signed Senate Bill 746 yesterday, updating Pennsylvania's Dog Law to improve public safety in communities statewide; improve conditions for dogs in breeding kennels, day cares, and shelters; protect those who buy or adopt dogs in Pennsylvania; and help prevent the spread of infectious disease among dogs.

Governor Josh Shapiro Recognizes Pennsylvania Veterinary Lab, Field Staff for Excellence in Avian Flu Crisis Response

In a ceremony on Monday, Governor Josh Shapiro presented Governor's Awards for Excellence to Pennsylvania Veterinary Laboratory Director Dr. Deepanker Tewari, and nine agency veterinarians and field staff for their swift, aggressive, and effective response during the avian influenza outbreak in Pennsylvania in 2022 and early 2023.

Shapiro Administration Invites Foodbanks, Soup Kitchens to Apply for $2.5 Million in 2nd Round of Emergency Food Assistance Funding

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today invited qualified food banks, pantries, shelters, and soup kitchens that offer emergency food assistance to apply for $2.5 million in funding available through round two of The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP) Reach and Resiliency Grants. The grants are just one element of Governor Josh Shapiro’s Administration’s commitment to increasing food security and access to healthy food for children and families across Pennsylvania, wherever they live.

Carve Up Your Support for PA Farmers in PA Preferred® Pumpkin Carving Contest

This Friday the 13th, Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding invites Pennsylvanians to cultivate some good luck by carving out some time to support a Pennsylvania pumpkin farmer. Purchase a PA-grown pumpkin and show your creativity by entering the PA Preferred® pumpkin contest, PA Pumpkin Palooza: Where Gourds Go Glam.

Pennsylvania Invests $3.5 Million To Ensure 18 Farms, 1,336 Acres in 13 Counties Will Be Farms Forever

The Shapiro Administration announced today that Pennsylvania preserved 1,336 acres on 18 farms in 13 counties, forever protecting them from residential or commercial development. The investment of more than $3.1 million in state dollars and $433,433 in county dollars to purchase land development rights preserves prime farmland, helping ensure that Pennsylvania farms can continue feeding our families and economy in the future.

Keystone International Livestock Expo Brings America’s Best Livestock, Aspiring Agriculture Leaders, Unique Family Fun to PA Farm Show Complex

The Keystone International Livestock Exposition (KILE) returned to the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center in Harrisburg Friday, Sept. 29 for its 66th year, bringing two weekends of livestock competitions and exhibitions featuring 1,000-plus competitors from 27 states, as well as agriculture career development, and free family fun. The East Coast's largest livestock show includes a national 4-H, FFA, and collegiate team and individual judging competition, along with thousands North America's best cattle, sheep, pigs, goats, alpacas, and horses in action in dozens of widely varied competitions.

Shapiro Administration Announces 2024 Pennsylvania Farm Show Theme: Connecting Our Communities

2024 Pennsylvania State Fair™ will connect the $132.5 billion PA Agriculture industry to lives positively impacted daily by its success.

Shapiro Administration Awards $1.6 Million to 39 Foodbanks, Pantries, and Soup Kitchens to Expand Emergency Food Access Across Pennsylvania

Governor Shapiro’s Administration is committed — during Hunger Action Month and year-round — to fighting hunger and food insecurity across Pennsylvania. 

Pennsylvania Hosts U.S. Dairy Stars, Develops Future Leaders During All-American Dairy Show

The All-American Dairy Show and Premier National Jr. Show return to Harrisburg for the 59th year at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex and Expo Center. The event features four days of competitions from Sunday, September 17 through Wednesday, September 20, highlighting more than 1,500 youth and adult contenders from across the U.S. showing the best of seven dairy cattle breeds, and competing in judging and youth development critical to the future of a vibrant dairy industry. Supporting the volunteer-run national show is part of the Shapiro Administration's commitment to growing and sustaining Pennsylvania's dairy industry.

Pennsylvania Awarded $1 Million in Federal Grants to Boost Sales, Quality of Vegetable, Fruit, Nut, and Nursery Crops

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today announced that Pennsylvania was awarded more than $1 million in federal funds for 11 projects aimed at increasing the visibility, quality, and competitive standing of the state's horticultural specialty crops, including fruit, vegetables, nursery plants, flowers, honey, and nuts. The grants are among 587 funded projects totaling $72.9 million awarded nationwide through the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service's Specialty Crop Block Grant program, which is administered by the state.

Pennsylvania Invests $8.6 Million to Ensure 35 Farms, 2,645 Acres in 18 Counties Will Remain Farms Forever

Farms Protected in Adams, Allegheny, Beaver, Berks, Chester, Columbia, Cumberland, Dauphin, Erie, Lackawanna, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Lycoming, Montgomery, Northampton, Union, and York counties

Shapiro Administration Highlights Critical Budget Investments in Pennsylvania’s Hardwoods Industry

The commonsense, bipartisan budget Governor Shapiro signed earlier this month increased the funding for hardwood research and promotion by 50%

Bipartisan Budget Signed by Governor Shapiro Spurs Innovation, Expands Opportunity, Grows Future of Pennsylvania Agriculture

The commonsense, bipartisan budget Governor Josh Shapiro signed earlier this month invests in the future of Pennsylvania’s agriculture sector, making critical investments in the industry that feeds the state’s economy $132 billion annually, supports more than 580,000 jobs statewide, and puts food on tables around the world every day.

Shapiro Administration Invites Proposals for $500,000 in PA Farm Bill Grants to Prepare Next Generation for Success in Ag

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding called today for proposals for $500,000 in PA Farm Bill Agriculture & Youth Grants from organizations whose projects are aimed at preparing youth to succeed in Pennsylvania’s $132.5 billion agriculture industry.

Shapiro Administration Recognizes Farm Families’ Staying Power, Honoring Two New Bicentennial and Nine New Century Farms

Today Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding honored the Donald and Donna Kerchner family of Lenhartsville, Berks County, and the Richard Thomas family of Troy, Bradford County. Both families’ farms were named Bicentennial Farms for having been in the same family for 200 years. Redding also honored nine families who achieved Century Farm status for keeping their farms in the same family for 100 years.

Shapiro Administration Visits Fayette County Farm Providing Low-Income Seniors and Families with Fresh, Local Food through Farmers Market Nutrition Program

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding visited the market at Duda’s Farm in Brownsville, Fayette County, a participating partner in Pennsylvania’s Farmers Market Nutrition Program. The program provides Pennsylvania’s low-income seniors and families with vouchers to purchase fresh, local fruit and vegetables at farmers markets and farm stands statewide.

Shapiro Administration Announces $13 Million in Tax Credits Supporting Farmers’ Work Improving Water, Soil Quality

Agriculture Secretary Russell Redding today invited Pennsylvania farmers to apply for $13 million in tax credits available to support their efforts to improve soil health and water quality. Tax credits through Pennsylvania's innovative conservation financing program, Resource Enhancement and Protection (REAP), can be combined with other state funding, including the Agriculture Conservation Assistance Program, and Conservation Excellence Grants, as well as federal funding through programs like the Environmental Quality Incentives Program to help pay for on-farm enhancements that protect the environment and boost farm sustainability.
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