The 2012 Indiana State Fair marks the first fair for the new DuPont Food Pavilion, the structure formerly known as the Pioneer Our Land Pavilion. A ribbon cutting was held on the opening morning of the fair.
DuPont Executive Vice President Jim Borel was on hand for the event. He told HAT the idea of a state fair space dedicated to the many aspects of food and agriculture and educating consumers about where their food comes from and how to make better choices is a great fit for DuPont.
“One piece of it is a contribution to the community to help them learn and grow and make value from it,” he explained. “On the other hand ag and food is a really big part of the DuPont company today, close to a third of the company and a major growth platform. We’re investing a significant amount in research and development to come up with newer, better products that can help farmers and food companies move forward and ultimately help us as consumers have more abundant and healthier food to eat. So food is important to us so this is a great opportunity for us as well.”
Much of the R & D is finding a way for farmers to get better crops in years like this one when drought hits. Borel says today’s genetics have greatly improved crops’ ability to yield in times of stress, but research continues.
“Certainly the drought in some areas is so devastating that we wouldn’t want to pretend that you can come up with a magic product that can live without water. But we are making great progress. The more we learn about how the plant works, and the more we’re able through breeding and new technologies to come up with ways to help it manage water better, we’ll get better and better about this.”
He said DuPont Pioneer’s new AQUAmax line of hybrids is based on a number of native traits that will be help make yields in water stressed areas a bit more predictable.
“We’ve got another generation coming behind that in a few years that we think will be even better able,” he added.
Borel calls agriculture the optimistic science and firmly believes that society and the world will rise to the challenge of feeding the rising global population.
DuPont Food Pavilion located on Main Street near the iconic Midway Arch features more than 30 Indiana-made specialty food items. Visitors to the 16,000 square foot exhibit during the fair are perusing the pavilion’s Hoosier Market where locally-produced items such as Hoosier Mama Bloody Mary Mix and Burton’s Maplewood Farms maple syrup are for sale.
While bringing local favorites home for dinner is great, sampling food is even better. Volunteers at the retail store, sponsored by Indiana Artisan and Indiana Grown, will distribute complimentary samples of local cuisine every day.
Dozens of local chefs will present interactive cooking demonstration at the pavilion’s Red Gold Culinary Corner. Featured chefs from Food for Thought: An Indiana Harvest will also present daily food shows in the state-of-the-art exhibition kitchen. Fairgoers can discover new recipes, interact with all the food experts and learn how to incorporate Indiana-made foods into every day meals.
Demonstrations are from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. each day. The pavilion’s retail store and exhibits are open 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. every day of the fair through August 19th.[audio:https://www.hoosieragtoday.com//wp-content/uploads//2012/08/DuPont-Food-Pavilion-opens.mp3|titles=DuPont Food Pavilion opens]In the full HAT interview hear more about DuPont’s efforts to feed the growing world population:[audio:https://www.hoosieragtoday.com//wp-content/uploads//2012/08/Jim-Borel-DuPont-Executive-Vice-President.mp3|titles=Jim Borel DuPont Executive Vice President]