United States Department of Agriculture
We started bright and early this morning and made our way to the Whitten Building for the United States Department of Agriculture.
We listened to many speakers and learned a lot about the different roles of the USDA and their branches. One speaker specifically talked about the correlation between consumers buying fruits and vegetables at grocery stores and farmer's markets. Their results were interesting. Based on their survey, they found that consumers spend more when they buy produce at farmer's markets than at grocery stores. This does not factor the options of buying organic or from different grocery stores. More information of this project is listed on the ERS website. The project title is "The relationship between patronizing Direct to consumer outlets and a household's demand for fruits and vegetables."
Then we heard one of my favorite speakers. Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young the Acting Deputy Under Secretary for Research education and economics administration. She currently works 3 different jobs in managing departments. One of my favorite quotes from our discussion was:
"Get ready for when your call comes."
Following our time in the USDA building, we took a short ride to the National Arboretum. We visited the Japanese Bonsai section and found the oldest bonsai tree. This tree has been through a lot. It went through the explosion in Hiroshima in WWII. It was only 2 miles away from the explosion and survived along with the family. This tree was potted in 1625 but, the tree could be much older.
I believe my favorite photo from this day was of a praying mantis eating a bee in the Herb and pollinator Garden at the Arboretum.
Then following dinner we had a quick workshop on "Building our Narrative."