High-risk season for HPAI

CE-MR-3-PA-AVAIN_08561by Steve Wagner

Insiders call it High Path AI. Yet, if it is high path, why hasn’t avian flu yet reached Pennsylvania? That was the question I put to PA Ag Secretary Russell Redding prior to his chairing of a town hall style seminar titled Preparation for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza [HPAI] at the Lancaster Farm & Home Center. “It is H5N2,” Redding said. “What we know at this point is that it does not like hot weather. [Read more…]

Is your hayride safe?

GM-XM-MR-2-Safe-Hayride62921by Sally Colby

A hayride accident that resulted in the death of a young woman and injury to at least 20 others last fall on a Maine farm garnered national attention, especially among those who look forward to fall- and Christmas-themed attractions hosted by farms.Bill Fetherolf, co-owner of Pioneer Evergreen Farms in Orwigsburg, PA, says on the day following the tragic accident, he was inundated with phone calls from both media and concerned people who wanted to know if the hayride at his farm was safe.

[Read more…]

New methods of vaccine production on the horizon

CEW-MR-1-VACCINES1by George Looby, DMV

Animal agriculture has long relied on the addition of antibiotics to increase feed efficiency and to aid in the control of low grade intestinal infections, especially in young animals. This practice has come under increased scrutiny in recent years as the human population has had to contend with the development of so-called super bugs which are resistant to conventional antibiotic therapy. [Read more…]

Frankenfield says ‘Tell your story’

CM-MR-1-GMO_06171by Steve Wagner

Taking center stage at the 2015 edition of Farming for Success, Andrew Frankenfield with the Penn State Extension, is also a produce grower. Frankenfield told those in attendance, “My customers want to know — ‘Is this Bt sweet corn or Monsanto sweet corn?’” After seven years, this is the first year he is actually not growing Bt sweet corn because, as he says, technology isn’t as effective any more and the seed is nearly twice as much. [Read more…]

Lehigh County farmer recognized for commitment to water quality

CM-RP-2-WATER-QUALITY-AWARD_0945a1State Conservation Commission, Department of Environmental Protection present clean water farm award

NEW SMITHVILLE, PA — State officials visited Lehigh County to honor a family farm for its investments to improve water quality. Joel Loch, a fourth generation dairy farmer in Weisenberg Township, received a 2015 Clean Water Farm award from the Pennsylvania Association of Conservation Districts. Pennsylvania State Conservation Commission Executive Director Karl Brown and Department of Environmental Protection Deputy Secretary for Water Management Kelly Heffner presented him with the award. They then toured the operation, viewing the best management practices firsthand. [Read more…]