LEMOORE — A group of college students from Denmark who are studying agriculture got a taste of local ag in a tour of Central Valley farming operations.

Lemoore FFA instructor Matt Moreno gave about 40 students a tour on Monday to some of the Valley’s agricultural hot spots and made a stop at Lemoore High School to meet educators and Lemoore FFA students. The tour was organized by Experience International, a nonprofit organization.

“They don’t have FFA [in Denmark] so we are going to tell them about our FFA,” Moreno said.

Moreno took the Danish college students on a tour of an almond orchard, grape vineyard, Almond Hauler in Fresno County, Droogh Dairy in Lemoore and saw cotton being harvested in Stratford. The students are in the area until Sunday.

“They were able to see the tractors and the machines,” Moreno said about visiting the almond orchard.

Moreno said the students were able to see firsthand how almonds are farmed.

“It’s interesting to see something new and see something else,” said Jette Madsen, a Danish teacher.

Madsen said they were all surprised to see how big farms are in California. She said an average farm in Denmark has about 150 cows. Droogh Dairy has a herd size of about 3,000.

Madsen said they know all the cows by name in Denmark.

Peter Hansen, 20, a Danish student, said Lemoore is very different compared to Denmark. He said it is a lot warmer here.

Hansen said he is studying to become a farmer to follow in his father’s footsteps.

“I grew up on a farm,” he said. “It’s fun. It’s nice – the country.”

During lunch in the LHS cafeteria, the college students were able to mingle with Lemoore FFA students and gave a presentation about agriculture in Denmark.

Moreno said this was his second time helping Experience International which promotes technical and cultural exchange programs related to agriculture, forestry and natural resources.

The first group of Danish student visited a few weeks ago. That group stayed in the area for 12 days.

“For me as a teacher, it was a good way to reconnect with the agriculture industry,” he said.

Moreno said he enjoyed the tour on Monday and has ideas on where he can take his own students in the future.

Charlie Walkinshaw, director of Experience International, said the group started their tour in San Francisco and will travel to farms down the Valley to Bakersfield.

“I just want to show them the diversity in the San Joaquin Valley,” he said.

Walkinshaw said the trip allows the Danish students to see farming from a different perspective and promote a cultural exchange between them and American farmers.

Walkinshaw said he would recommend young Americans to travel abroad for work experience.

This reporter can be reached at csandoval@hanfordsentinel.com or 583-2422. 

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