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Fallon Urges Aid to Iowa Truck Farms

Rod Boshart

The Gazette

May 7, 2006

[Note: This material is copyright by The Gazette, and is reproduced here as a matter of "fair use" for non-commercial, educational purposes only. Any other use may require the prior approval of The Gazette.]

DES MOINES — Democratic gubernatorial candidate Ed

Fallon said Saturday he wants to develop a local food industry that would revitalize rural areas and replace billions of dollars of imported food trucked into Iowa with p r o d u c t s grown on Iowa truck farms.

    With a relatively modest government investment, Fallon said, Iowa can help small operations get started and encourage direct marketing of homegrown products — building on the success of farmers markets in Iowa to replicate the concept on a grander scale.

    ‘‘The local foods industry is blossoming in a small way on its own, but with some help from the state, this could be a huge opportunity for Iowa,’’ he said. ‘‘I’m talking about restoring something that used to work very well in Iowa, but it’s working well right now on a small scale.’’

    Fallon, a seven-term state representative from Des Moines, said Iowa spends $8 billion annually on food, with 86 percent of those products grown outside of Iowa. ‘‘We ought to be embarrassed by that, and we ought to fix that,’’ he said.