Through a vet’s eyes: your parlor at milking time

C4-MR-2-Teatsby Bill and Mary Weaver

Extension veterinarians like Dr. Ernest Hovingh get to see a lot of milking parlors over the years, and come to expect certain problems crop up. Dr. Hovingh has seen ways milkers could, but often don’t, prevent parlor-acquired mastitis. Let’s look at this potentially costly problem. [Read more…]

Dolloff Acres Farm named Vermont Dairy Farm of Year

CN-MR-3-VTDairyFarm3by Lisa Halvorsen, Freelance Agricultural Journalist for UVM Extension

In an era when many farmers are going bigger to survive, Mike and Heidi Dolloff have kept cow numbers and milk quality consistent, which helps ensure their 160-cow Holstein farm in Springfield, VT, remains both sustainable and profitable. They pay meticulous attention to detail, whether in selection of herd genetics or improving crop yields or cow comfort, never losing sight of their goal to keep this a viable family farm they can pass onto the next generation. [Read more…]

Success of Connecticut’s young farmers

CN-MR-3-SuccessCTby Lorraine Strenkowski

The Future Farmers of America has been traditionally linked to Vocational Agricultural centers in our high schools. According to www.ffa.org, 91 percent of FFA members are currently enrolled in grades 9-12, and are “challenged to real-life, hands-on tests of skills used to prepare them for more than 300 careers in the agriculture industry.” The National FFA Organization also puts a high priority on leadership, business, social and speaking skills. [Read more…]

Virginia’s Southside Produce Auction enters third year

CM-MR-3-Auction1by Karl H. Kazaks

CULLEN, VA — “This was kind of the last piece of the puzzle,” said Charlotte County Agriculture and Natural Resources Extension Agent Bob Jones, visiting one of the twice-weekly auctions at the new Southside Produce Auction facility.

The auction began in 2012, but its foundation was laid with a series of prior developments. An Amish community has been growing in Charlotte County for the past 15 years, with members coming from more developed communities in Pennsylvania and Delaware. The newcomers were used to living in places with a produce auction and hence knew the benefits of such a marketplace, though they themselves typically hadn’t been involved in growing produce. Throughout the county, though, more and more people were starting their own produce and horticulture operations. [Read more…]