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USDA secretary to visit South Dakota on Thursday

In this May 23 photo, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack speaks in Richmond, Va. Vilsack is pressing the Republican-led House to vote on a long-term farm policy bill. (AP Photo/Steve Helber, File)

SIOUX FALLS (AP) -- Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack plans to visit South Dakota on Thursday afternoon to promote fruit and vegetable consumption and childhood nutrition.

Vilsack will visit the Hy-Vee grocery store on Sycamore Avenue to talk about ways to prevent childhood obesity by increasing physical activity. He will also announce the results of a pilot program aimed at increasing fruit and vegetable consumption in the country's poorest schools.

The USDA says Vilsack will highlight efforts to ensure the availability, affordability and range of options to ensure children get the right nutrition to grow up healthy.