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Kentucky Soldiers Teach Afghan Farmers Modern Techniques

Some Kentucky soldiers in Afghanistan are working with farmers there on ways to improve their agricultural and business techniques.

An Agribusiness Development Team from the Kentucky National Guard has been operating there since August. The team’s commander, Col. Mike Farley, says a big part of the mission is to help update methods for Afghan farmers.

“They’re literally two and three hundred years behind us with equipment and processing and… a lot of the problems that we have is water,” says Farley. “They have plenty of water here through the river systems, but getting it to the crops is a big issue, because there’s no electricity.”

Farley says they’ve worked on projects from restoring the honeybee population to building greenhouses. Another major problem facing Afghan farmers is having the business to support their efforts, because the area is so poor.

Another Kentucky Air National Guard team is already preparing to replace Farley’s team later this year.

Farley spoke on Thursday’s “State of Affairs” program.

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Kentucky Guard Team Heading To Afghanistan

Dozens of Kentucky National Guard personnel are going to Afghanistan on a special mission.

Public Affairs Officer First Lieutenant Stephen Martin says the group will help communities boost their local agricultural economies.

“The Agribusiness Development Team is a team of soldiers and airmen, 64 soldiers and airmen, who are going to afghanistan as part of a unique mission for helping develop the agricultural industry over there, to help build up the economy,”  Martin said.

He says team members have a variety of skills and backgrounds in agricultural matters.

The group will deploy in Afghanistan after several weeks of mobilization training at Camp Atterbury, Indiana.

Its  mission will last one year.