COLUMBIA - This week is the 4th annual Buy Missouri week, an initiative started in 2017 by Gov. Mike Parson. Buy Missouri Week takes place on the 2nd Saturday of October every year and promotes the Buy Missouri Program.

The Director of Buy Missouri, Casey Adrian, said the goal of the program is to encourage residents to purchase Missouri made products and support the businesses that make them. In order to qualify for the program, businesses have to manufacture at least 51% of their product in Missouri. 

There are 21 Boone County businesses participating in the program, including DogMaster Distillery. Founder Van Hawxby originally heard about Buy Missouri from other people in the distilling industry. He applied to the program in order to promote his business and Missouri.

"What I have found is people in Missouri, they like to support the other people in Missouri," Hawxby said. "So when you buy Missouri, when you buy my products, you're supporting me. You're supporting my family. You're supporting those people that I employ." 

Another Columbia business in the Buy Missouri program is Raw Roots Turmeric. The owner, Ranjana Hans, runs the business from her house. She grows herbs in her backyard that she sells for people to use in their food and drinks. Since starting the business in 2018, her goal has been to reach out to more people. She reached out to Buy Missouri for help to achieve her goal.

"That's the reason I contacted Missouri," Hans said. "Because, I wanted to reach out to more and more people." 

Both Hawxby and Hans thought the programs had helped their businesses. 

"Buy Missouri is a great platform where people can enroll their business with them and they can get better opportunity," Hans said.

Hawxby said that he wanted to applaud the lieutenant governor for promoting the initiative. 

"I think it's been a wonderful thing," Hawxby said. "Not just for me and businesses here in central Missouri, but throughout the state." 

This year, the Office of the Lieutenant Governor hosted a virtual Buy Missouri Day. In an hour long video, many Missouri business owners promoted and spoke about their businesses. 

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