LITTLE ROCK – During a ceremony today at the State Capitol, Governor Hutchinson joined agriculture leaders, industry partners and 4-H and FFA members in declaring November 19 to 25 as Turkey Week in Arkansas. The Turkey Week proclamation highlights the state’s turkey industry and its value to Arkansas’s economy and agriculture industry. The full proclamation can be found, here.

“The traditional family meal is an important part of the Thanksgiving holiday, making it a perfect occasion to recognize farmers and ranchers for providing us with nutritious food every day of the year,” said Governor Hutchinson. “A turkey raised in Arkansas will be at the center of many dining tables this Thursday so I especially want to recognize our state’s turkey industry, which creates more than 14,000 jobs. Please remember to give thanks to Arkansas farmers and agriculture leaders who help drive our state’s largest economic sector.”

Each year, agriculture contributes more the $21 billion in economic value for the state. “The poultry industry, which includes turkey, chicken and eggs, is an important part of Arkansas’s diverse agribusiness landscape, representing almost 50 percent of agriculture’s total cash receipts, said Agriculture Secretary Wes Ward. “We all should be thankful for the farmers who provide this protein throughout the entire year.”

Marvin Childers, president of The Poultry Federation, added that Thanksgiving week is the perfect time to recognize everyone involved in making Arkansas the third largest producer of turkeys in the nation. “Thank you to our dedicated farmers, who raise 26 million turkeys per year, and industry leaders, like Cargill and Butterball, for their impact on our state,” he said. Learn more about the Arkansas turkey industry and its economic impact, here.

The proclamation featured a live turkey, provided by Victoria and Kristin Lehmann of Scotland, Ark. The sisters raised the turkey, provided by Butterball, as part of their project with the Conway County 4-H.