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USDA talks to farmers about their efforts to help veterans

At a farm fair Monday in Blackshear, Under Secretary of the USDA Michael Alston spoke to a crowd about the department's efforts to support veterans / Danielle Apolinar (WGXA)

BLACKSHEAR, Ga. -- At a farm fair Monday in Blackshear, Under Secretary of the USDA Michael Alston spoke to a crowd about the department's efforts to support veterans.

Alston said that every year, about 200,000 veterans separate from the service. He said about 47 percent of those veterans return to rural America, so the USDA has a mission of making those individuals aware of what the department can do for them.

He said veterans can be eligible for various grants and training in order to help them start a farm upon their separation from the service.

Alston said that one goal of the USDA is to enhance rural America and that it is important for veterans to know that they have the resources to start a farm if that is what they want to do.

Navy veteran Allen Biggs said that the USDA helped him greatly when he began opening a farm after his father passed away about two years ago. He said that he is thankful for all the the USDA did for him.

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