The South Dakota Agricultural Foundation has taken on a five-year challenge to fundraise $4 million to help support the state's agriculture industry.

Governor Dennis Daugaard said Tuesday (March 20) money raised by the foundation will be matched with $1 million from the state and the South Dakota Community Foundation.

Daugaard says the challenge will "ensure growth in the industry" while emphasizing the need for philanthropy in agriculture. The announcement came at biofuels producer POET's headquarters in Sioux Falls.

The company is committing $250,000 to the matching challenge. POET CEO Jeff Broin says the effort to promote agriculture education, market development and research is crucial for the state's future.

In announcing the contribution promise Tuesday in Sioux Falls, Daugaard said South Dakota agriculture its more than producing food, fuel and fiber, it's about developing values and character in young people and society.

The foundation is a nonprofit made up of South Dakota ag industry leaders. President Nate Franzén says the group looks forward to investing in the "future of our industry."

Source: Associated Press

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