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Students gave out free chocolate milk at the Oct. 3 Homecoming 5K and the Oct. 10 Fallen Soldiers 5K to promote the benefits of chocolate milk after a workout
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Western Illinois University Agriculture Students Participate in Advocacy Projects

October 27, 2015

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MACOMB, IL - Western Illinois University students from Communicating Agriculture Issues classes have been, and will continue completing several agriculture advocacy projects this semester.

Thus far, the students from WIU have held four advocacy events—handing out chocolate milk at two 5K races, passing out caramel apples and debunking meat myths. These agriculture advocacy projects are part of a nationwide competition in agriculture advocacy.

Students passed out free chocolate milk to runners/ walkers at the Homecoming 5K on Saturday, Oct. 3 as well as at the Fallen Soldiers 5K on Saturday, Oct. 10, in order to promote the benefits of chocolate milk after a workout.

On Wednesday, Oct. 14 and Thursday Oct. 15, students handed out candy with "meat myths" attached to dispel common misconceptions about meat. Another project entailed distributing apples and caramel on campus (sponsored by the McDonough County Farm Bureau) Thursday, Oct. 22.

"We handed out apple slices with caramel on campus, telling people facts about apples and supporting our Illinois apple growers. I also helped with the group that passed out meat myths—we attached myths and facts to Twizzlers and handed them out on campus, trying to eliminate some of the myths that people hear about the meat they are eating and that we as farmers are producing," said senior agriculture major Lauren Henebry (Buffalo, IL).

According to senior agriculture major Mackenzie Buyck (Liberty, IL), the group passed out roughly 500 pieces of candy in two hours in an attempt to educate the public about what is true about meat and what are myths.

With fewer than 2 percent of the population involved in agriculture, the general public is out-of-touch with how its food is produced yet consumers want to know that their food is safe and sustainable. The students' mission is to show it is, despite how it appears on social media.

The agriculture advocacy projects will run through November.

For more information or to get involved with these agriculture advocacy events, contact Instructor Jana Knupp at

Posted By: Caitlin Meyers (
Office of University Communications & Marketing