A three-year-old marketing campaign touting South Carolina produce and farm products could create as many as 10,000 jobs a year, a study released Friday says.
Those estimates come from a $45,000 study funded by the state Agriculture Department and performed by the University of South Carolina's business school.
The projections were based on similar marketing programs in North Carolina and Georgia that have been going on longer than the Certified SC Grown program.
Agriculture Commissioner Hugh Weathers says the state spends about $1 million a year on the program and participating farmers spend about $7 million a year to market their goods as Certified SC Grown.
"I think it's the best thing in about 15 to 20 years to hit the South Carolina Department of Agriculture," said Tom Trantham, a 69-year-old organic-dairy farmer who runs the Happy Cow Creamery in Pelzer. "I know our customers are just raving about the quality of our fresh local-grown products."