Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton delivered the keynote address on the opening day of FARMFEST 2011, the largest outdoor agriculture event in Minnesota. Dayton's hopeful message centered around the state's bright future and steadily increasing agricultural exports, mostly to Mexico, Japan and China.
"According to USDA, the value of all of Minnesota's agriculture production in 2008, the last year available, was almost $16 billion," says Dayton. "That same year, the value of all our state's agriculture exports was almost $5.5 billion, over one third of the total. Those exports were two and a half times greater than they were in 2000, just eight years ago."
Now in its 30th year, the show attracts more than 35,000 attendees with over 625 local and leading companies in the farming industry.