Join Us January 15th at the Town & Country Expo

Although farming and ag-related businesses are an important part of Franklin County’s economy, one can’t assume that even life-long residents have an understanding of why or how farmers do what they do. That’s why the Ag Committee of the Greater Franklin County Chamber is hosting the inaugural Town & Country Expo on Thursday, January 15, from 10 AM until 3 PM in the Franklin County Convention Center on the fairgrounds in Hampton.

“We know consumers of all ages want to feel confident that they’re making safe, healthy food choices for their families. That’s why we’re providing an opportunity at the Town & Country Expo for farmers and consumers to actively engage in conversations about how food is grown,” says Larry Sailer, who farms in southern Franklin County, has been telling his ag story for years to groups from across the state and even internationally through his weekly Tuesday “Musings of a Pig Farmer” blog on

The day-long Town & Country Expo offers opportunities for farmers and consumers to engage from trade show booths to a panel discussion about how being involved on a local level can carry your message to an even larger audience. Thanks to social media, Franklin County residents can carry their messages and share their stories with a worldwide audience.

Connecting families with their food is “old hat” for Celeste Settrini, a fourth generation rancher from Salinas, California, who also operates a boutique graphic design, media and communications agency. Settrini will be presenting the Expo’s keynote address, “Connecting Families: The Intersection of Pasture and Pavement.” Celeste will share with the audience what it’s like to live on a California ranch and offer suggestions on how producers and consumers can make a better connection.

Town & Country Expo

Franklin County Convention Center – Hampton, Iowa | January 15, 2015

10:00 AMTradeshow Booths Open
10:30 – 11:30 AMAg Outlook by Kelvin Leibold, ISU Extension Farm Management
11:30 AM – 12:30 PMFREE lunch courtesy of Franklin County Pork Producers, Franklin County Beef Producers, Triple T Meats of Ackley and Fareway of Hampton.
12:30 – 1:30 PMCeleste Settrini, fourth generation California rancher
2:00 – 3:00 PMSocial Media Panel led by Sara Broers of Social Connections LLC and featuring:

3:00 PMExpo Ends


“At the end of the day, we want consumers to have a greater trust of farmers and a better understanding of farming practices,” says Sailer.

People who know farmers or are engaged in conversations with farmers have a more favorable impression about production agriculture, according to a recent survey by the Iowa Food and Family Project of which Latham Hi-Tech Seeds is a proud sponsor. People familiar with the Iowa FFP are:

  • 10% more confident that farmers care for the well-being of their livestock.
  • 9% more confident that farmers protect the quality of the state’s water, air and soil.
  • 9% more trusting that farmers balance doing what’s right with financial considerations.

CookbookAwareness of the connection between farming, food and families jumped 6 percentage points from last year’s poll to 31 percent. Poll results also show that consumers who are familiar with the Iowa FFP are more likely to pay attention to food labels and seek details about how food is grown. They also have a more favorable impression about today’s farm and food system.

We’re really encouraged by the results of the Iowa Food and Family Project’s poll and hope similar connections will soon be made among Franklin County residents. Because we believe the Town & Country Expo is a great first step in building that connection on a local level, Latham Hi-Tech Seeds is proud to help sponsor this local event.

Be sure to stop by our booth for a complimentary copy of the “Let’s Cook” cookbook, including the recipe I made with Iowa Girl Eats blogger Kristin Porter. Available while supplies last!