The FFA paused from its hectic daily schedule on March 11 to thank legislators for acting, or enacting, on their behalf and on behalf of the citizens of the commonwealth. Bills that range from bounties on coyotes to tractor driving and a host of other agriculture-related legal concerns are matters taken up by state House and Senate members during the past year. Pennsylvania Secretary of Agriculture George Greig added that such legislation helps the Pennsylvania Department of Agriculture to “keep up with our regulatory responsibilities such as inspecting restaurants and school cafeterias, and checking gas pumps to make sure they are dispensing the correct amount of fuel, and keeping our animals and plants safe from disease and pests.” [Read more…]
The Penn State Mastitis and Milk Quality Conference, held March 25 and 26 at the Harrisburg/Hershey Holiday Inn, was part of a larger effort by a USDA-funded project through Michigan State University, to protect milk quality by lowering the use of antimicrobials, while at the same time also lowering the number of mastitis cases.
The event, hosted by Penn State’s Veterinary Extension Team, appeared to show that the science is available to accomplish this goal, if all the many factors that can influence mastitis infection and treatment are taken into account. [Read more…]
When Richard McConnell and Tina Williams work cattle, it’s almost eerily silent. There’s no shouting or arm-waving, and no one is in a hurry. Cattle just seem to fall into place, moving quietly and willingly to wherever they’re guided. Richard and Tina say that stress-free handing is a matter of understanding cattle — how and why they move the way they do — and taking the time to train them. [Read more…]
BOWMANSVILLE, PA — Two words describe how passion meets purpose at Creek Place Farms: “Berkshires, naturally.”
The road to this 150-sow certified purebred Berkshire farm was years in the making for Donald and Maria (Kawulych) Longenecker. Their preparation, hard work and long hours are paying off in “happy pigs, living naturally, and ultimately rewarding consumers with delicious Berkshire pork,” as Maria put it. [Read more…]
Thriving farmers markets have loyal customers and great vendors. The customers spend money, return regularly and bring friends. Successful vendors bring great products, friendly smiles and the right pricing, week after week.
During a Farmers Market Manager Conference held in Rhode Island, a brainstorming session revealed contribution to a successful market and what may be holding it back. [Read more…]
When Jason and Amy Ladd received a phone call from a young stranger who confessed his friend had stolen from their business, they were floored. The Ladd’s own Lucky Ladd Farms, a petting farm in Eagleville, TN. The alleged robber was their 19 year-old employee who, in the nature of the young and invincible, bragged about how she was skimming from the Ladds’ till and spent the stolen cash on flashy items like a Mustang convertible and multiple iPhones for her and her friends. Eventually, one of her friends was bothered enough to say something. [Read more…]
Dr. Ernest Hovingh describes himself as ‘a James Herriot kind of man.’ Herriot was a veterinarian in the UK’s Yorkshire Dales who wrote a series of bestselling books about his practice nearly 40 years ago. Dairy cows are where Hovingh has spent the past 20 years of his life. “But,” he explains, “I also work on the bio-security aspect of things.” Hovingh honed in on infectious disease for his presentation at Penn-Ag’s Pork Expo and Poultry Progress Day at Shady Maple in East Earl, PA. [Read more…]
Western Pennsylvania’s Windy Ridge Dairy is, in many ways, a typical small dairy farm. But in just as many ways, it isn’t. Lindsay Fischer, along with her mother Chris Fischer, milk 40 head of registered Jersey cows at the family’s dairy, just north of Pittsburgh. Her father Steve, along with her brother Matt, both work full-time off of the farm, but do all of the field work. The family is busy both on-farm and off. [Read more…]