Deming FFA Students are Going to Nationals

Deming FFA Students are Going to Nationals
Posted on 08/23/2023

Deming Future Farmers of America (FFA) students attended the New Mexico State FFA Convention in Las Cruces in June where members, advisors, parents, and supporters from across the state come together to compete and celebrate the achievements of the last year.

Deming FFA students shined against the competition with the following rankings:

• Kendahl Bingham and Kash Albrecht competed as a team in the Plant Systems Agriscience Fair contest and received a Silver Ranking
• Jazmin Lopez and Jazmin Perea competed as a team in the Plant Systems Agriscience Fair contest and received a Silver Ranking
• Addison Schulke competed in the State Talent Show

Congratulations to our National Finalists, Elizabeth Donaldson and Destiny Ortega, on their Gold Ranking in Food Products and Processing Systems with their Agri-Science Fair Project, Bagged Versus Bulk: The Healthier Option. The team has been selected in the Top 10 in the Nation and will go on to compete in November at the National FFA Convention in Indianapolis.

After discussing the pandemic and the impact of COVID-19 on shopping for produce, the team came up with the idea to see how much bacteria comes home on bulk and bagged produce. The worlds perspective on germs and bacteria has changed immensely since the COVID-19 pandemic but one thing hasn’t changed is the way consumers purchase produce. Often, people walk into a store and sort through bins of fresh produce, touching multiple before choosing the ones to take home.

Elizabeth and Destiny researched the number of bacteria colonies on bagged fruit and bulk fruit with the conclusion that bagged produce brought home less bacteria than bulk. Investigating whether bagged or bulk produce carry more bacteria allows the agricultural industry to provide high quality and safe produce to consumers.

“I have seen these girls grow so much over the last year and it has been and incredible journey. Destiny and Elizabeth put in a lot of hours while working on this project, but the hard work has paid off.” said FFA Advisor, Darbi Harrington. “I will never forget how nervous they were to go into the room and compete. I knew they would do amazing but more than anything I wanted to see them walk out with a smile on their face feeling proud of how well they did.”

“When we were competing, I remember being super nervous thinking I wouldn’t do good but then the nerves settled down as soon as we started presenting.” said Destiny Ortega “It was the best feeling when we walked out knowing we killed it. I was so thrilled when they announced that we got a Gold Ranking.”

Destiny joined FFA in her 7th grade year after her teacher told her about all the opportunities it could bring, and she has loved every moment of being part of the organization. FFA has taught her to never give up and that hard work while giving 110% can take you a long way.

“My most memorable moments of the competition are how we would hype up our team members before they would walk in to compete and cheering on Addison when she performed in the talent show.” said Elizabeth Donaldson “My experience at State taught me that good friendships are valuable, and that hard work definitely pays off.”

Elizabeth was an experienced member of 4-H before she joined FFA, where she started Livestock Judging which the experience really helped her once she moved to higher level contest in FFA. Her advice to anyone looking to join FFA or another agricultural organization is “Definitely do it! It really helps you branch out, meet lots of new people, gain new experiences with leadership, agriculture related skills, teamwork, and so much more.”

“I don’t even have the words to describe how proud I am of these girls and their hard work and dedication! said Ms. Harrington “I am so excited to be able to travel with them to National Contest and provide them with a new experience.”

Both girls are extremely excited to go to FFA Nationals to compete and this will be their first time in Indianapolis.

PR 2023 Deming FFA Going to Nationals E & S.pdf