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Company : The GIANT Company
Program category : Neighborhood Improvement


Ever wonder where your food comes from? Have you ever stopped to think about the science and knowledge that goes into growing and raising the peppers in your salad or the beef in your burger?  

The GIANT Company, in partnership with the PA Friends of Agriculture Foundation, unveiled the new PA Farms to Families Immersion Lab, an interactive “classroom on wheels” on Oct. 12, 2022, at the Pennsylvania Farm Show Complex & Expo Center in Harrisburg, Pa. to provide answers to those questions and more by connecting visitors to Pennsylvania farms. The mobile immersion lab features Pennsylvania farms and the farm to table process, facilitating hands-on learning experiences and authentic food connections. A media event was held to launch the lab tying in National Farmer’s Day, which recognizes the integral role farmers play in bringing food from farm to table.  

The immersion lab showcases BrightFarms, a hydroponic greenhouse; Buona Foods, a mushroom farm; Lazy Hog Farm, a swine operation; and Painterland Sisters, a dairy farm and yogurt processor, featuring their on-farm production and environmental practices that bring foods from field to plate. Guests can experience driving a tractor through a virtual reality corn field, quiz their knowledge of common fruits and vegetables, practice building a balanced meal with Pennsylvania-grown foods, and explore growing career opportunities in food and agriculture. 

The immersion lab is actively on the road and booking events throughout 2023 and 2024, visiting schools and community events across the commonwealth.  


The GIANT Company sponsored the PA Farms to Families Immersion Lab in partnership with the PA Friends of Agriculture Foundation, a charitable organization supported by the Pennsylvania Farm Bureau. The partnership also brought together BrightFarms, Buona Foods, Lazy Hog Farm, and Painterland Sisters to bring the immersion lab concept to life. 

The GIANT Company’s $125,000 sponsorship will enable PA Friends of Agriculture Foundation to continue to power the PA Farms to Families Immersion Lab for years to come.  


The GIANT Company is proud to support 218 local vendors and 120 farms to provide fresh, quality, wholesome products to the families it serves. The PA Farms to Families Immersion Lab is a testament to these partnerships and an extension of the company’s commitment to healing the planet by reducing the number of food miles used to transport food from farm to table. The company is also helping its local communities and farmers by supporting their business and making healthier options available for today’s table.  

The GIANT Company’s objectives for the PA Farms to Families Immersion Lab include: 

  • Bring the power of the farmer to families and communities in Pennsylvania, particularly highlighting local vendor partners.  

  • Allow visitors to learn about Pennsylvania farms and farmers and the importance of balanced nutrition.  

  • Create awareness for the immersion lab with a launch media event.  


According to Stephanie Painter, co-founder, Painterland Sisters, “Being included in the immersion lab is a chance for us to tell our story. Painterland Sisters is a fourth-generation organic dairy and crop family farm. We are proud to connect consumers to the direct source of their food: the farmer. Our yogurt, and partnerships like the immersion lab, are the conduits for a greater purpose, educating consumers and their families on the importance of agriculture, environmental sustainability, local food systems, and dairy in our diet.” 

By the end of July 2023, the Immersion Lab will have traveled nearly 2,600 miles visiting 17 Pennsylvania cities across 13 counties, attended 18 events, spent 55 days in the community, and reached more than 470,000 individuals and families.  

Earned media coverage raised awareness for the immersion lab and partnership with more than 23 media placements, generating more than 268,000 potential impressions.  


“The PA Farms to Families Immersion Lab connects families to the farmers producing their food through an immersive, hands-on learning experience. It also pays tribute to the farmers who make our work possible. Together, we help families gather around the table, and we hope the immersion lab inspires the next generation of farmers and food system leaders.”
– John Ruane, interim president, The GIANT Company 

Support Statement:

“The immersion lab powered by The GIANT Company helps the PA Friends of Agriculture Foundation expand the reach of its mission – Planting Seeds. Cultivating Knowledge. Harvesting an Understanding of Agriculture. Consumers enjoy three meals a day, but many do not understand the process of bringing food from farm to table. The immersion lab serves as a connector, helping consumers better understand the process of food and agriculture and the role they play in our daily lives.”
- said Rick Ebert, president, Pennsylvania Farm Bureau; chair, PA Friends of Agriculture Foundation