Agricultural field day educates SWMO youth on farm technology, food labeling, and more

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“We’ve got about 200 mama cows,” explained Zach Sharp with Neosho High School.

Zach Sharp already knows a lot of cattle but Field Day is taking that a step farther.

“They’re teaching us everything from the care of our animals, to the care of our pastures, and the equipment side of things,” Sharp continued. “And, how the rain, erosion, pollution — things like that — can affect our animals and our environment.”

It’s the 56th Annual Field Day at the Southwest Research Center at Mount Vernon.

About 1,800 students from more than 50 schools were on-hand to learn about farm technology, food labeling, and livestock.

“We have several fistulated steers here where folks can come and learn about the inner workings of a rumen of cattle,” explained David Cope with the center.

Growing hemp is a big focus, with Missouri just legalizing the crop earlier this year.

“There’s a lot of folks looking at hemp for fiber, for grain, for CBD oil,” Cope added.

There’s also farm safety, veterinary medicine, and a chance to learn about heavy equipment firsthand.

“Tractors — they learn about hay equipment,” Cope continued. “We have some construction equipment here that the kids have been getting on and doing things with. Those are opportunities they may not get in their classroom every day.”

Field Day attracted students from all around the region, as far east as Lebanon and Galena, Missouri, but also those closer to home, like Monett, Neosho and Joplin.

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