Fly control on organic dairy operations

by Katie Navarra

Without fail, flies arrive with summer heat and increased grazing time. Controlling flies is a common management issue among farmers, especially organic farmers who have fewer options for control. In a webinar hosted by eExtension and eOrganic, Roger Moon, Ph.D. and Brad Heins, Ph.D. at the University of Minnesota, discuss two control options that were researched at the university through a project funded by the USDA Organic Research and Extension Initiative.

Before a method of control can be established, you have to know your enemies. Flies originate from different places and cause specific problems. When asked to name flies, most people first list mosquitoes, horse flies, black flies and biting gnats. [Read more…]

Molodich Farms: steadily improving since 1923

CN-MR-50-3-Molodich-Farms6121by Kristen M. Castrataro

In 1923, Mike Molodich’s grandparents headed East from Ohio due to his grandfather’s battle with black lung. The Connecticut realtor showing them farms was starting to get frustrated when property after property failed to catch their attention. In response to the realtor’s suspicion that they were never going to purchase one, Molodich exclaimed, “You show me a farm, and I’ll buy it!” The next farm they visited is still the home of Molodich Farms in Moosup, CT. [Read more…]

The 42nd Annual Massachusetts Sheep and Woolcraft Fair

CN-MR-38-3-Sheep-and-woolcraft7411by Laura Rodley

The four Hs in 4-H stand for head, heart, hands and health. The 4-Hers that exhibited at the 42nd annual Massachusetts Sheep and Woolcraft Fair also learned kindness and patience. 4-H is geared for children age six through 18. Three-year-old Asa Johnson of Owl Ridge Farm in New Braintree, MA was too young to compete, but wanted to help Georgianna Springstube of West Stockbridge, MA exhibit her Shetland lamb ewe in the junior ewe class. [Read more…]

Comment period extended for proposed changes

CM-MR-56-2-Organic-livestock2by Tamara Scully

Proposed changes to the National Organic Program Livestock and Poultry Practices are open for a recently extended comment period, which now closes on July 13, 2016. There are new revisions covering animal welfare and health practices, requirements for outdoor access and living standards for mammals as well as poultry, and new regulations for transport and slaughter. Anyone involved in organic production is encouraged to understand the new proposals, and to provide comments for consideration. [Read more…]