The Secretary of the Army, Pete Geren, and the Director of the Army National Guard, Lieut. Gen. Clyde Vaughn, will hold a press conference at 10:15 EST, Jan. 22 in the DoD Briefing Room, Pentagon 2E973, to provide information about National Guard Agricultural Development Teams (ADT) that are currently or are planned to deploy to Afghanistan. They will be joined live from Afghanistan by Army Col. Stan Poe, Commander, Texas ADT East-Ghazni Province, and Sultan Hussein Abasyar, Ghazni Province Director of Agriculture, Irrigation, and Livestock (DAIL).
Soldier and airmen-farmers from Missouri, Texas, Nebraska, Indiana, Tennessee, Kansas, Kentucky and Oklahoma are scheduled to participate in the ADT program in Afghanistan this year.
The program is important to Afghanistan as more than 70 percent of Afghans are farmers. Agriculture accounts for nearly half of Afghanistan's Gross Domestic Product. Through the ADT program Afghan farmers receive expertise, advice and training in soil sciences, irrigation, agronomy, horticulture and animal husbandry. In addition, ADT members teach critical skills in marketing, storage, and even ice production in order to ensure farm products can be marketed domestically and for export.
Journalists without a Pentagon building pass will be picked up at the River Entrance only. Plan to arrive no later than 45 minutes prior to the event; have proof of affiliation and two forms of photo identification. Please call (703) 697-5131 for escort into the building.