Tangipahoa Parish Profile

About the LSU AgCenter

The LSU AgCenter is dedicated to providing innovative research, information and education to improve people’s lives. Working in a unique statewide network of parish extension offices, research stations and academic departments, the LSU AgCenter helps Louisiana citizens make the best use of natural resources, protect the environment, enhance agricultural enterprises and develop human and community resources.

Program Highlights

Family & Consumer Sciences

According to the County Health Rankings 2019, Tangipahoa Parish ranks 41 of 64 parishes in the overall health outcomes ranking, with 12% adult diabetes, 37% adult obesity, and 33% adult inactivity rates. In April 2019, 5 community members attended Hammond Healthy Communities forum. The participants were provided the health statistics of Tangipahoa Parish and together they addressed the health needs of the parish. As a result, the top health priorities in the community is lack of education, behavior, lifestyle, and lack of awareness. The opportunities to address these needs includes nutrition classes, collaborate with recreation centers, and farmer’s market. To help improve the rankings, LSU AgCenter-General Nutrition agent introduced the program “Flavors of Health” which helps the public learn how to merge Louisiana’s unique food tradition with some of the evolving health challenges in today’s world. The result is to help improve the health in adults while collaborating with local recreation centers and local community agencies.

LSU AgCenter collaborated with Hammond Recreation Center to offer free Lunch and Learns monthly to the community, sponsored by the City of Hammond Recreation Center. Nine Lunch and Learns educational workshops were conducted and 128 community members attended the program. Topics that were covered included, tips on healthy eating and physical activity recommendations to a healthy lifestyle, which included food demonstrations and tastings, and tools to keep participants on track and motivated. Participants were given information about the Mediterranean Diet, Food Safety Tips, How to Shop for Fruits and Vegetables, Diabetes Management, How to Count Carbohydrates, and celebrated national nutrition and health month. According to surveys, participants learned food safety tips in class from the Food Safety training “How to safely prepare, handle, store, chill, and cook and reheat food”. Through the “New You Healthy Lifestyle and Weight Management” training, participant learned how to set goals by setting SMART goals to help to reach healthy goals. As a result, participants are making healthier choices and steps to a healthier lifestyle which can help reduce the risks of chronic illnesses in Tangipahoa parish.

SNAP Education Programs in Tangipahoa Parish include:

SNAP Education Program– Provides educational programs that increase, within a limited budget, the likelihood of all Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) recipients making healthy food choices consistent with the most recent dietary advice reflected in the Dietary Guidelines for Americans and USDA MyPlate. SNAP-Ed programs utilize behaviorally focused, science-based nutrition education and physical activity promotion interventions or programs involving:

  • Targeted programming to help SNAP audiences establish healthful eating habits and physically active lifestyles.
  • Primary disease prevention to help SNAP audiences having risk factors for diet-related chronic disease prevent or postpone the onset of disease by establishing more physically active lifestyles and healthier eating habits.
  • Consumption of healthful foods within a limited budget and promotion of low-cost or no-cost physical activity opportunities.
  • Let’s Eat for the Health of It– series of classes for qualifying adults and youth.
  • Happy Healthy Me– series of classes for qualifying preschool and Head Starts.
  • USDA Eat Smart, Live Strong—series of nutrition & physical activity classes for ageing adults.
  • School & Community Gardens—gardening and nutrition education classes lead to economic production and consumption of healthy and fresh food.
  • Healthy Community Coalition- The prevention of childhood obesity requires a community effort.
  • Facilitating and organizing community efforts to create an environment that will increase knowledge related to healthy behaviors, promote healthier communities through community coalitions, and increase community practices that promote healthy behaviors.

Agriculture & Natural Resources

Strawberry growers face pressure from plant diseases that require proactive management to avoid losses of marketable fruit. A number of fungicides that were previously effective for managing a common disease, grey mold, are no longer effective due to the development of fungicide resistance. Samples were collected from farms in Tangipahoa and Livingston Parishes and sent to Clemson University for fungicide resistance testing. Results and recommendations were provided to growers so that they have the information necessary to choose fungicides that are likely to be effective and avoid wasting money and losing yield by using ones that are not likely to be effective.

Gardening and lawn care bring pleasure to many people and, in many cases, provide a source of nutritious fruits and vegetables. Gardeners and homeowners need reliable information upon which to base decisions about plant selection and maintenance (pest management, fertilization, etc.), in order to avoid unnecessary expenses and unneeded or poorly timed fertilizer and pesticide applications. Newspaper articles are an efficient way to reach a large number of people with science-based gardening and lawn care information. Horticulture-related articles are printed weekly in a local newspaper with a distribution of 5000 people.

4-H Youth Development.

The amount of youth that incorporate fruits, vegetables and whole grains into their diets continues to decline in today’s society. To help bring awareness to our youth, educational programs were given to over 1,000 4-H members that were geared towards stressing the importance of having fruit, vegetables and whole grains in their diets while also incorporating lean protein without cutting the flavor while still being able to enjoy Louisiana cuisine. The educational lessons focus on commodities grown in Louisiana. These lessons included "How Sweet It Is - Louisiana Sugarcane" and "Louisiana Food Traditions". We also focused on how we can adapt recipes to feed our families a more health conscious dish. We discussed how to incorporate fresh vegetables into their diets and why fresh is better than frozen vegetables in our lesson entitled "Fresh and Fit". A "Garden in a Glove" activity was a perfect way to continue with our theme and gave the students vegetable seeds planted in a glove that they could take home and transplant to a garden. The Tangipahoa Master Gardeners incorporated a lesson of various pollinators and their importance in our gardens and landscapes.

As a result of the healthy living lessons given, 90% of the 4-H members were able to define what commodities are grown across Louisiana and Tangipahoa Parish. 95% of the youth felt they would be able to cook Cajun cuisine and alter recipes to make them more nutritious. 100% of the 4-H members realized the importance of gardens both from an economical and health aspect and why pollinators play such a vital role in our environment. 100% of 4-H members realized that our state is very unique as compared to other states in our country in regards to our cuisine. As a result of the educational programs, 100% of 4th-12th graders felt that they are more aware of general healthy living/nutrition knowledge.

Who we reach

  • 47341 - Youth reached (includes 920 4-H members & 35 4-H clubs)
  • 35980- Adults reached (1522 Family & Consumer Science & 34458 Ag & Natural Resources )

How we reach them:

4-H Clubs, school enrichment, field days, publications, articles, newsletters, class series, demonstrations, website and workshops.

Expanding our efforts:

450 volunteers from 4-H, Master Gardeners, Family and Community, Master Cattlemen and Master Horseman.

Parish Facts

LSU AgCenter County Agents provide research-based information on plant, aquaculture, wildlife and animal enterprises to Tangipahoa Parish clientele. The 2017 total dollar amount from these commodities were:

  • Plant enterprises: $44,094,745
  • Population – 133,777
  • Aquaculture and wildlife: $673,961
  • Persons under 18 years old – 24.5%
  • Animal enterprises: $29,421,927
  • Land area (square miles) - 791.28
  • Median household income - $45,901
  • Persons below poverty – 20.9%
  • Persons 65 years old and over-14.4%
  • Total Households, 47,598

Local Issues & Plans for this year

Increase productivity and profitability of Louisiana Agriculture

  • Conduct Master Cattleman Certification Classes
  • Conduct Beef producers’ field day and annual meeting
  • Conduct Florida Parishes Forestry Forum

Promote the wise use of natural resources and protection of the environment

Write weekly newspaper articles and make available online

  • Provide one-on-one consultation regarding gardening
  • Support the Louisiana Master Gardener program in order to extend consumer horticultural education efforts
  • Hold at least two gardening or lawn care classes and/or demonstrations open to public, as well as the Camellia Stroll, Spring Garden Day, and Fall Garden Day
  • Provide information to gardeners through Tangipahoa Horticulture Update e-mails
  • Continue with the wetlands restoration program with 4-H youth and leaders and community organizations
  • Conduct pesticide certification and agricultural worker protection programs

Build leaders and good citizens through 4-H youth development

  • Conduct 4-Hofficer/leader training
  • Conduct 4-H Junior Leadership programs and service learning activities
  • Recruit 4-H Junior Leaders to serve on citizenship; fashion, food and fitness; and science, engineering and technology state 4-H boards

Strengthen families and communities

  • Conduct programs to prevent chronic diseases Present programs on healthy eating habits Conduct programs on healthy weight management.

How we are funded:

You are the local supporters and beneficiaries in the LSU AgCenter extension programs. Just 20% support keeps these programs in your community. Your parish extension office offers programs in:

  • Sustaining Louisiana agriculture, forestry and fisheries.
  • Building leaders and good citizens through 4-H Youth Development.
  • Family, nutrition and health to enhance the quality of life for Louisiana’s citizens.

LSU AgCenter State Appropriated Funds for FY 2019-2020:

  • State general direct: 74.9%
  • Federal funds: 13.6%
  • Self-generated: 7.1%
  • Statutory deductions: 4.4%

Innovate . Educate . Improve Lives

The LSU AgCenter and the LSU College of Agriculture