PA Center for Dairy Excellence hosts Financial & Risk Management Conference

CEW-MR-2-CDE7by Jon M. Casey

While it might seem tedious and boring to some, for others, the desire to excel at financial risk management for dairy producers is becoming an essential component of a well-rounded farm management plan. Because the world of Ag finance is constantly changing, Pennsylvania’s Center for Dairy Excellence (CDE) has recognized the need for keeping the Ag finance and banking community informed of the latest in state and federal pricing policies. Accordingly, they have worked to help develop risk management strategies to help producers plan more effectively for unforeseen changes in the forces that affect dairy producers. [Read more…]

USDA extends Dairy Margin Protection Program deadlines  Enrollment continues through Dec. 5; comments accepted until Dec. 15

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, speaking at the National Milk Producers Federation annual meeting, announced extended deadlines for the dairy Margin Protection Program. Farmers now have until Dec. 5, 2014, to enroll in the voluntary program, established by the 2014 Farm Bill. The program provides financial assistance to participating farmers when the margin — the difference between the price of milk and feed costs — falls below the coverage level selected by the farmer. [Read more…]

Paradigm shift leads to grass-fed philosophy

CM-MR-3-Braeburn32432by Sally Colby

Charlie Sydnor has been involved with beef cattle for as long as he can remember, starting from his time growing up in Montana. He raised cattle in what he calls a rather conventional method until the late 1990s, which is when he looked at the scientific data on grass-fed beef.

“It dawned on me that that’s what we ate when I was growing up — grass-fed beef,” said Sydnor. “Then I looked at it from a historical perspective, and realized that most of our beef prior to 1945 was grass-fed.” [Read more…]

North Country Fruit and Vegetable Seminar

CN-GO-rp-northcountryby Heather Bryant, Steven Turaj and Olivia Saunders, UNH Cooperative Extension regional field specialists

On Oct. 29, 131 farmers and gardeners joined us for our annual North Country Fruit and Vegetable Seminar and Trade Show. The program was co-hosted by Coos, Grafton and Carroll County Cooperative Extension staff, and provided a good end-of-season opportunity for growers from all over northern New Hampshire to renew old friendships, network, discuss the seasons’ problems and get excited for next season. [Read more…]

Champion Belted Galloways from Harmony Meadows Farm

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The Romani family breeds registered Belted Galloway cattle at Harmony Meadows Farm in Glocester, RI. Instead of selling their animals for beef, they focus breeding efforts on quality genetics and prize-winning conformation. They sell superior beef steers and champion show stock. [Read more…]