Newton County welcomed a new County Extension Coordinator on Wednesday, March 4.
Agriculture and Natural Resources (ANR) Agent Ashley Best had a meet and greet at Turner Lake and discussed how extension works and how it will better assist people.
Best is the liaison between the specialists’ research at the University of Georgia and the public in Newton County. She provides information to use at home or on the farm. Best also makes recommendations in areas that include: soil fertility, water quality, herd health and management, crop management and pest management.
On Wednesday, Best expressed why she feels extension is important.
“I feel that extension is a service that all residents in Newton should feel comfortable utilizing. Our services can assist with any agriculture and natural resource question or problem you might have," she said. “I work closely with specialists at the University of Georgia to problem solve for the community in a timely manner”.
The extension service provides free, trustworthy information based on the latest scientific research that is easy for the public to understand. All their products have been tested in the lab at UGA to ensure consumers are receiving the best resources.
“Agricultural is still the biggest industry in our state by far and most people do not realize it. It provides food for everyone," said Fred Greer, a local farmer. “To keep agricultural in top proficiency and production, Ashley is the extender of the research at the University of Georgia who brings agricultural to the people. If we don’t have extension and the research to provide we may not get the groceries at the grocery store. We are recipients of all this research that makes the food available for us.”
The extension keeps people updated through programs and workshops, field days, mass media, phone call and in-person consultations and online publications.
“I am excited for the opportunity to serve Newton County and get to know the members of the community," Best said. "I look forward to working with the farmers and growers as well as providing information to teachers, homeowners, lawn care workers and families”.