Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler sits down each week with Southern Farm Network’s Rhonda Garrison to discuss “Today’s Topic.”
The 2012 N.C. State Fair opens Thursday. This year, there are new entertainers, new rides and new deep-fried foods, but also some new changes to the way competition livestock are housed.
Visitors will notice different animal and pedestrian traffic patterns in and around livestock buildings at the fair. The new traffic patterns primarily will affect buildings where livestock are housed or shown – the Kelley Building, Jim Graham Building and Expo Center – and the area around them. There are changes to the location of animals within these buildings and to the ways animals and people enter and exit them.
These changes were put forth by a multi-agency Study Commission that Commissioner Troxler set up after 25 people were sickened by E. coli bacteria during last year’s fair. E. coli is a type of bacteria sometimes present in the droppings from cattle, sheep, goats and other ruminant animals.
The changes recommended by the commission are designed to keep people and competition livestock separated as much as can be done practically, but without prohibiting people from seeing animals. These measures reinforce the message that competition animals are supposed to be seen and not touched. The changes build upon protective measures that were already in place, and they reduce risks while maintaining the fair’s agricultural heritage.
Click below to listen to the Commissioner and Rhonda talk about the State Fair and simple steps visitors can take to stay healthy.
[Audio:http://info.ncagr.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/Troxler_10-8.mp3|titles=Today’s Topic for Oct. 9]
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