Inmates at the Bossier Sheriff's Office Corrections Facilities have begun harvesting peas this week grown at the Pea Farm.

The farm is located on 23 acres of land nare the Bossier Minimum Security Facility. The food collected will be used to feed about 1,400 inmates at the Bossier Parish corrections facilities in Plain Dealing.

According to a sheriff's office news release, about 26,000 pounds of other vegetables have already been harvested, and more will continue to be picked through the end of July into early August on another seven acres.

"The Pea Farm provides an opportunity for non-violent offenders to be productive and work in the field for the food that they and other inmates will eat," said Sheriff Julian Whittington. "It teaches some a trade, gives them a work ethic, and helps them take pride in what they do. After a good day's work outside, they are ready to head back to the jail, settle down for the evening and get rested for the next day."

The Pea Farm came about in 1995, and planting for this season began in February. Inmates have already collected: 3,500 ears of corn, 1,260 pounds of potatoes, 630 pounds of onions, 16,000 pounds of squash, 3,000 pounds of cucumbers, 4,200 pounds of tomatoes, 250 pounds of peppers, 360 pounds of okra and 300 pounds of cantaloupes.