Beginning farmers can range from those just embarking on their passion after years of work outside of agriculture to younger adults choosing to farm for a living; those who happen to own enough land to qualify for reduced taxes or other incentives. No matter where on the spectrum a producer fits, keeping land in active agriculture is a benefit to everyone. [Read more…]
by George Looby
In March, Atina Diffley arrived at Maneeleys Conference Center in South Windsor, CT from her home in Farmington, MN to meet with a group of vegetable farmers from southern New England to share some of her experiences in marketing produce to wholesalers. Atina and her husband Martin operated a large organic vegetable farm until 2008. They continue to be actively engaged by sharing her experiences with other farmers considering the switch to Certified Organic — with a view to supplying to wholesalers. [Read more…]
Ten years ago, a tick was a tick. They crawled onto a dog, perhaps hitched a ride on your pants leg and then latched onto your scalp. Moms became experts at finding and removing ticks after kids played outside.
“The tick climbed up to the top of your head, and you’d feel the bump,” said Dr. Tom Mather. “Your mom would remove it because she had pointy fingernails. And no one got sick.” [Read more…]
Ben Weikert has seen nearly every side of beef production possible. He started with beef projects as a young 4-Her, and he competed on a collegiate livestock judging team as he pursued a degree in animal science. He and his brother Owen have developed an elite herd of show cattle and have served as judges at numerous livestock shows. After receiving a master’s degree and serving as an extension agent, Ben is now working toward a PhD in agricultural leadership, and has some tips for youth who plan to show cattle this season. [Read more…]
The 12th annual Massachusetts Blue Ribbon Calf Sale was held March 19 at the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, MA. There were approximately 600 people from all over New England and New York on site to inspect and purchase dairy calves through a consignment auction. A total of 60 calves from seven different dairy breeds were up for bid including Holsteins, Red & White Holsteins, Milking Short Horns, Brown Swiss, Jerseys, Guernsey and Ayrshire. There were plenty of other aspects to the event including youth clinics, commercial vendors, a silent auction and raffles. The calf sale, which was put on by the Massachusetts 4-H Dairy Committee, included free admission and parking. [Read more…]