ANN ARBOR — State Representative Gretchen Driskell (D-Saline) attended the Washtenaw County Farm Bureau’s 2013 Membership Kickoff on Tuesday where she became a member and also addressed fellow members, taking questions from those members in attendance. Other speakers at the event included bureau President Steve Thelan, Membership Committee Chairman Ken Siler, and Joe Shultz, a Farm Bureau Insurance agent. Tim Redmond also spoke about the Washtenaw Food Policy Council, which is a countywide program working to ensure an environmentally safe and sustainable local food supply.

“I’m thrilled to join the more than 1,000 members of the Washtenaw County Farm Bureau,” Driskell says. “Agriculture is a major industry in the 52nd District, and advocating for the farmers in Washtenaw County is a priority for me.”

According to the bureau, 37 percent of the land in Washtenaw County is farmland, with 1,300 farms comprising more than 166,000 acres. The county is first in the state in terms of the number of sheep and horses on its farms, and the value of the agricultural products its farmers produce totals $73 million per year.