Seneca Falls, NY – The New York Center for Agricultural Medicine and Health will celebrate 25 years of farm safety programs with its new NYCAMH-to-Go Mobile Unit at the August 6-8, 2013 Empire Farm Days. To meet the needs of busy farmers, NYCAMH now offers a mobile health van staffed by health and safety professionals. It combines basic hearing, blood pressure, glucose, vision and other preliminary health screenings with NYCAMH occupational health programs. The NYCAMH-to-Go van is equipped to provide respiratory fit testing and direct sales of personal protective equipment and power takeoff shields. Among the safety and health activities at the 300-acre event at Rodman Lott and Son Farms in Seneca Falls, NY, are free skin cancer and blood pressure screenings, and first aid demonstrations with a trauma mannequin. NYCAMH staff will provide information on the New York State ROPS – Rollover Protective Structure – Rebate Program that offers up to $865 toward the cost of retrofitting a tractor. Continue reading
by George Looby
The Eastern Connectocit Resource, Conservation and Development Area, Inc. held its Annual Meeting on Monday, June 24 at the Tolland Agriculture Center located in Vernon, CT. President John Guszkowsky opened the meeting shortly after 11 a.m. citing some of the accomplishments of the past year. The organization has grown to encompass almost two thirds of the towns in the state and is ready to accept those in the western half of the state who are supportive of the mission of the organization. In its mission statement it states that it champions partnerships and initiatives that sustain our natural and agricultural resources while strengthening our economy. The vision of the organization is that it be recognized as a leader in promoting and facilitating the promotion and support of agriculture in eastern Connecticut.
President Guszkowsky reviewed the way in which the organization has grown and thanked all of those who played a part in that growth. He spoke about the emphasis that has been placed on soil health and the Agvocate program. A highlight of the morning’s activities was the recognition of the Partnership Award recipients. The president was recognized for his leadership role in bringing together the many groups that make up the organization and focusing them on achieving the goals of the Eastern CT RC&D. Also recognized were Heidi Cerrigione, Ray Covino and Dawn Pindell. Each of these individuals has played a significant role in advancing the cause and mission of the organization. Continue reading
by Jon M. Casey
More than 100 visitors attended the first of two Open House and Dairy Tour events presented by Pennsylvania’s Center for Dairy Excellence (CDE) on June 28 at Hopeway Farm near Greensburg, PA. Wayne and Hope Frye, along with son Patrick and daughter Kelley, served as hosts for the morning event, which featured a self-guided tour of the operation, followed by a brief program featuring Frye family members, CDE Executive Director John Frey, and industry professionals who worked together with the CDE to help make this informative event possible.
Wayne Frye began by saying that he and Hope began milking at this location in 1978, beginning with 28 cows in a tie stall barn that has since been converted into a calf barn. Since those early beginnings, the Frye family has added a freestall barn that was expanded in 2008 to accommodate their growing milking herd that today numbers approximately 310 head. Frye said they have done their expansion over the years, “piece by piece” as a way to remain economically secure during the years of volatile milk prices that have befallen the dairy industry. Continue reading
by Chris Bickers
How much rain fell in North Carolina this spring and early summer? On July 9, Commissioner of Agriculture Steve Troxler said, “It is just about time to call for Noah and the Ark! It’s amazing the amount of rain we have had. It’s not just one region it is pretty much the statewide. In some areas of the state, as much as 50 percent of the wheat crop still hasn’t been harvested. We have a wheat crop in the field that was a good crop. We can’t get it combined. Really I am worried that if this weather continues we are going to see this wheat sprout in the head.”
One crop that can benefit from all this rain is corn, Troxler said. But even corn could be affected if the wet weather persists. “The corn will take this amount of water and can do well with it. But I just had a report that there is a dairyman in western North Carolina that has 900 acres of corn under water. When it goes under water, most of the time it is going to be unsalvageable.”
In western Carolina, some vegetable farmers have had to plant three times. And the plants are under water again. Statewide, the blackberry harvest has been slowed considerably compared to normal.
“We have cotton that is drowning,” Troxler continued. “Even planting soybeans and sweet potatoes has been a challenge. But I have learned as a farmer for 40 years that you never know. We will see how this season ends up. We could still do all right.” Continue reading