Crop Comments: Old country gets ornery

In an article “Glyphosate Most Heavily Used Herbicide in History,” Mike Mozart stated that although enthusiasts for genetically engineered crops preach that this technology reduces herbicide use, the reverse is true. With the arrival of glyphosate-tolerant crops in 1996, use of that herbicide has increased by almost 2,000 percent in the U.S. and 1,500 percent worldwide. (More and more weeds have developed their own herbicide tolerance, resulting in the need for even more weed-killer applications.) Moreover, that between 1974 and 2014 over 3.5 billion pounds of this herbicide were applied in the U.S., with two-thirds of that amount being sprayed between 2004 and 2014. [Read more…]

Recent developments with right-to-farm laws

CM-MR-50-2-Recent-de1velopments-0075by Steve Wagner

In 1911 the Spur family began to farm about 15 miles west of Phoenix, AZ. In 1956 Spur’s successors began to develop feedlots, and in May of 1959 developer Del Webb started planning a retirement community to be known as Sun City, about 10.5 miles north of the Spur feedlot. By 1965, the Del Webb community had expanded to within 500 feet of those feedlots. The proximity of the feedlots to the retirement community was bound to cause issues, and did. Some tenants had already moved in, but the fragrance of manure and accompanying flies started to inhibit housing sales. [Read more…]

Automatic dairy farming: Part 2

CEW-MR-1-Automatic-Da1iry4by Tamara Scully

Dairy farmers recently gathered at Mor-Dale Farms, in Myersville, PA, to learn about automation: calf feeders, feed pushers, robotic milking systems and more. Part One discussed the use of automatic calf feeders as presented at the workshop “Automation and the Dairy Industry,” organized by Dr. Charles Garner, DVM.

Automatic feeding robots

Once calves mature, automation can still play a role in their daily feeding. Even in barns where humans — not robots — milk the cows, equipment, such as an automatic feed pusher, can simplify farm chores while helping to insure the cows consume the maximum dry matter intake, and are eating more of their daily rations. [Read more…]

“Meat your beef” with Baltimore culinary students

CM-BF-MR-13-1-Meat-your-b1eefAs part of its Northeast Beef Promotion Initiative (NEBPI), the beef checkoff hosted a “Meat Your Beef” channel-influencer immersion event at Hedge Apple Farms in Buckeystown, MD on April 29. Participants included 21 chef instructors and culinary students at the Howard Community College and the Montgomery Community College in the suburbs of Baltimore, MD. [Read more…]

Ag commissioner says now is the time for farmers, agribusinesses to prepare for hurricane season

RALEIGH, NC — Hardly a county in North Carolina can say it is immune from hurricane damage. From Ivan in the mountains, Hugo in the foothills, Fran in the Sandhills, and Isabel and Floyd in the East, hurricanes have cost lives and livelihoods in every region of the state.

Scientists are predicting another active hurricane season in the Atlantic Ocean, which means North Carolina could again find itself in the path of a storm.

Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler is encouraging farmers, livestock producers, food manufacturers, pesticide dealers, timber owners and other agribusinesses across the state to prepare now for hurricane season. [Read more…]