Commodity milk pays the bills – or is supposed to pay the bills – on most dairy farms today. Selling milk from the bulk tank to the dairy processors is how most milk and milk products travel from the farm to the consumer. Raw milk, on-farm pasteurization and direct fluid milk sales, or production of farmstead cheese, yogurt and ice cream, sold directly from the farm, is a rarer breed. [Read more…]
Ex-California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger was once asked a hypothetical question by a member of the media, and answered, “I don’t do hypotheticals!” But as hypotheticals go, some are necessary. Penn-Ag’s Executive Vice President Chris Herr rightly noted in discussing steps being taken to cope with High Pathogenic Avian Influenza, “what you’re seeing is the new normal.” Jennifer Reed-Harry, speaking at an earlier seminar on emergency preparedness, said because HPAI has not been identified yet in Pennsylvania, we are theoretically on emergency stand-by. [Read more…]
Summarized by Linda M. Fetzer, Pennsylvania State University
Farmers and ranchers use bins to dry and store grain and to feed their livestock. For the most part, augers are used to transfer the grain to and from bins. Some machinery and augers now used in production agriculture have increased in size and power, resulting in less time for farmers and ranchers to react in dangerous situations. It is therefore important to understand fully the hazards and risks associated with flowing grain and to follow safety guidelines to avoid a potentially fatal injury incident. There are four main situations that pose entrapment risks when you work with stored grain: flowing grain, grain bridge collapse, grain wall avalanche, and use of a grain vacuum. Each of these situations and its entrapment risks are described below. [Read more…]
Gene L’Etoile of Four Star Farms, MA, spoke to attendees at the 2nd annual Hudson Valley Value-Added Grain School and Trade Show, hosted by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ulster County (CCEUC) and CCE Capital Area Agriculture and Horticulture Program.
He described how he and his wife began a turf operation for sports fields, home lawns and other landscaping needs in 1976. Then, as their family expanded, they added a hops operation on less than an acre of land and started small grains on 8 acres in 2008. Today they have expanded to 110 acres of turf, 17 acres of hops and over 120 acres of grain and heritage corn, on both their own and rented land. [Read more…]
“People want to buy local and they want to buy more than just what they can get at the farmer’s market,” commented Dr. Heather Darby, Agronomic and Soils Specialist, University of Vermont Extension.
Darby, Founder of Northern Grain Growers Association, was a guest speaker at the 2nd annual, Hudson Valley Value-Added Grain School and Trade Show hosted by Cornell Cooperative Extension of Ulster County (CCEUC) and CCE Capital Area Agriculture and Horticulture Program. [Read more…]
Winter Dairy Management programs across the state, coordinated by Pro-Dairy’s Kathy Barrett, focused on transition dairy cows and how better management can profit dairy owners.
“There are many interacting factors that affect how successful producers are with handling transition cows,” said CNY CCE Regional Dairy Specialist Dave Balbian. “Nutrition is very important, but it’s not the only thing. We dairy producers and researchers are learning more and more all the time how these factors interact.” Balbian emphasized that many components fit together and emphasizes that each component is important. [Read more…]
On Tuesday, Feb. 23, I traveled to Burlington, VT, with my fellow classmates to attend the Vermont Dairy Producers Conference. This was my second year attending this conference, and just like the previous year, it was a great event to attend. The guest speakers that they showcased were very interesting, engaging and made many valid points for their specific talks, and there was one that really captured the crowd by sending his message in a comical and charming way. Garrison Wynn is the CEO of Wynn Solutions; he is a bestselling author, speaker and consultant. He not only spoke once, but twice at the Vermont Dairy Producers Conference. [Read more…]
Like a bombshell that falls on a city’s buildings, the one that is falling on Penn State’s Extension Services is just as destructive in its way as the one destroying buildings. Jobs will be lost, services ruined and/or done away with, and cultures, namely agriculture and horticulture, will suffer irreparable damage.
“After vetoing two previous budget proposals last year,” explained PA Farm Bureau President Rick Ebert, “the Governor decided to line-item veto the Legislature’s third proposal, in order to disperse some public funds to keep public schools and human services functioning. As a result of the line-item veto, funding for PSU Cooperative Extension and Research, along with other agricultural priorities, have been zeroed out of the existing state spending plan that was supposed to run from July 1, 2015 to June 30, 2016. [Read more…]