A few days before Christmas, people were stopping by McCray’s Farm and Country Creamery to pick up last minute gifts — maple syrup, the farm dairy’s own chocolate milk, ice cream cakes and even homemade ice cream, available in 25 flavors from Barnyard Blast to Caramel Brownie Swirl. Part of the year-round petting zoo, the ducks and geese swimming in the duck pond greeted customers. [Read more…]
The New England Vegetable & Fruit Conference and Trade Show offered workshops led by experienced growers, extension agents, crop advisors, university and industry researchers as well as industry representatives from across North America. Speakers shared the latest innovations and advances in the fruit and vegetable industry. This biennial conference was held Dec. 15 – 17, 2015 at the Radisson Hotel in Manchester, NH. [Read more…]
NORWICH, VT — On Friday Dec.18 more than 50 farmers, Cooperative Extension, USDA officials and others gathered at the Norwich Farm campus of Vermont Technical College to launch the Connecticut River Farmers’ Watershed Alliance.
Upper Valley farmers Larry Scott, Jean Conklin, Walter Gladstone, joined others to listen and share ideas to actively address water quality concerns in the Upper Connecticut River Valley. This new watershed alliance will bring together a cohesive group to network together to help farmers, local landowners and local environmental groups collaborate on mutual objectives and shared responsibilities to help protect this river resource and its tributaries now and for future generations to come. [Read more…]
Poultry production not only occurs in large commercial flocks, it is also finding a resurgence among small-scale farmers and backyard producers. No matter where or how the birds are raised, common poultry diseases are a concern. Knowing the signs and symptoms, and collecting samples to make a positive diagnosis, can go a long way in insuring poultry health. [Read more…]
Faye Whitney of Whitney Acre Farms started out with two Shetlands and now owns 27, the largest flock of registered Shetlands in Massachusetts. Currently the executive secretary of the North American Shetland Sheepbreeders Association, she has served on the Board of Directors and been the secretary for 12 years. Shetlands caught her interest in 1993. “I inherited my family farm, and we were down to just two horses. My husband (Phil Lussier) and I thought we should have livestock, and keep sheep to keep brush down.” Their Ashfield, MA farm was started by her great-great grandfather, Walter Lesure, who also raised sheep that appear to have been Merinos, according to an old photo, notes Whitney. She is the fifth generation to work the land.
She located the American Livestock Breeds Conservancy that promoted and protected heritage breeds, and decided, “Let’s get a minor breed and do a good thing.” [Read more…]