Does anyone care what prices dairy farmers receive?

Recently Land O’Lakes, a giant dairy cooperative located in the upper Midwest, announced to many of their dairy farmers on the East coast that they were going to impose a supply management program on the co-op members to commence Jan. 1, 2016. Some of their reasons may or may not be justifiable.

However, the large concern of Land O’Lakes program is, they left out of their program the strong need for their members (and all dairy farmers) to receive a realistic price for their milk. [Read more…]

NJFB Women’s Leadership Committee provides assistance throughout New Jersey

CE-MR-1-Womens-leadership11by Jane Primerano

The image of a farm wife in a kitchen with steam hovering over the boiling canner, wearing a flour sack apron and a beatific smile is the stuff of old movies and 1950s television.

Women play every imaginable role on a farm, from management to marketing, and also in the parallel universe of community service. The Women’s Leadership Committee of the Farm Bureau has a long history of service in New Jersey. [Read more…]

Breeding better beef

CE-MR-3-Mountain-Hollow31by Sally Colby

When Randy and Laura Rockhill purchased a large property in Madrid, NY, their intent wasn’t to start a purebred cattle operation.

“We bought it primarily for hunting,” said Randy, describing the 400-acre home farm. “We bought a few head of cattle, and went from a few cattle to over 200 head.” In addition to the home farm, the Rockhills rent an additional 500 acres for crops and pasture. [Read more…]

New crops for New Jersey

by Jane Primerano

Benjamin Franklin called New Jersey a barrel tapped at both ends: New York City and Philadelphia.

For better or worse, this is still true. Many New Jersey farmers take advantage of this by growing specialty crops for the cities’ restaurants. In addition to the lucrative tourist market, the ethnic diversity of the state is creating new markets right here.

Over the past 16 years, Dr. James E. Simon (Dr. Jim) has worked to bring in and improve new crops to suit these markets. [Read more…]

What I now know about turkeys

CN-MR-2-TURKEYS11by Hope Holland

My agricultural background rests firmly in the equine area. However, with the impending Thanksgiving holiday and the looming threat of bird flu I was pressed into service to find a turkey breeder willing to allow a stranger onto their farm to take a picture of a turkey for a cover.

I learned very quickly that in the face of not only the avian flu outbreak but also the possibility of animal rights activists, the breeders of turkeys, whose main crop after all will be greatly in demand at this time, are not welcoming of strangers. I can’t say that I blame them, come to think of it. I know that if I had a crop of fancy sales yearlings headed for a major horse sale I would be cautious too. But it did mean that I couldn’t just hit the Internet, call a few of the listed turkey farms and expect a welcome mat to be laid out at the end of the farm driveway. [Read more…]