OFA announces today that Sam Kass, White House Assistant Chef and the Food Initiative Coordinator, will be a keynote speaker on Monday, July 16 at the OFA Short Course, the largest horticulture event in North America. Kass will speak about gardening and planting home-grown fruits, herbs and vegetables. This spring, several OFA member companies, including breeders and garden centers, launched new or expanded offerings in the edible plant category to meet the increasing demand by consumers. This is good news for the industry and supports an effort to improve the health and well-being of kids and adults.
“[There is a] national conversation that has been started about the need for all of us to eat more fresh fruits and vegetables and ensuring that everyone has access to fresh produce in their neighborhoods – key components of the First Lady’s Let’s Move! initiative which is an effort to tackle the problem of childhood obesity in this country,” said Kass. Gardening is an integral part of the program.
According to the Let’s Move! program, over the past three decades childhood obesity rates in America have tripled, and today, nearly one in three children in America is overweight or obese.
“The horticulture industry can play an important role in helping to solve some of society’s greatest problems. Plants are more than just pretty. Research has shown that plants, flowers and trees, are important to our health in a variety of ways,” said Michael V. Geary, CAE, chief executive officer of OFA.
Kass will be the second keynote speaker at this year’s OFA Short Course. On Sunday, July 15, Joe Lamp’l (a.k.a. joe gardener) will speak about ways to find and influence the ever elusive consumer in today’s market. You can see and hear Lamp’l on Fresh from the Garden on DIY Network, GardenSMART on PBS and his latest series, Growing a Greener World, also on national public television. Lamp’l also shares his know-how on NBC’s Today show, ABC’s Good Morning America and more. Both events are open to all Short Course attendees.
To learn more, visit www.ofashortcourse.org.