Art Whitman honored at Northeast Agribusiness and Feed Alliance annual meeting

CN-MR-1-NE-Agri-Whitman1qby Elizabeth A. Tomlin

Art Whitman of North Bennington, VT, was presented with the Distinguished Service Award by the Northeast Agribusiness and Feed Alliance “for a lifetime of dedication and service to the agriculture industry” at the 2016 annual meeting and forum in Albany.

“Honesty”, “integrity”, and “a hard working individual,” who was very active in legislative issues and led his community and the agricultural industry, in service over his entire life, were comments used by his peers to describe Whitman. [Read more…]

Growing rye for malting

CN-MR-1-Growing-Rye-for1-by Tamara Scully

Cereal grains are no longer regulated to commodity grain markets or cover crop use. Instead, they are in demand by the growing population of craft maltsters and brewers, and are fueling the growth of this rapidly emerging market.

Hartwick College, in Oneonta, NY, invited farmers, brewers, maltsters and researchers from around the country — and included seven international guests — for its weekend Farmer/Brewer conference, “A Maltster in the Rye.” Conference workshops were aimed at highlighting the correlation between the actual growing of the grains — including variety selection, agronomics and environment, and management practices — to the ability of the maltster and brewer to craft high-quality, unique products. [Read more…]

Six hundred meals a day

CN-3-Six-hundred-meals-47217by Laura Rodley  

Over six hundred meals a day, three times a day, are served at Hampshire College while college is in session. Approximately 1,400 students attend the school.

To provide the food to feed them, the college has the Hampshire College Farm Center in Amherst, MA, a 100-acre working farm that also provides work-study jobs for the students to study farming. This is in keeping with the college’s goal to locally source 100 percent of the food served on campus.

“We sent eight beef to them this year, usually 15-20 pigs. We send 70 dozen eggs a week; we could do a lot more eggs, but in general eggs are not profitable,” said Pete Solis. He has been the Director of Livestock and Pasture Management for the past year and a half, having brought with him his experience working on his own farm in nearby Easthampton.   [Read more…]

Bird enthusiasts flock to New England’s largest poultry show

CN-MR-3-Poultry-show39117by Paul Burdziakowski

The Northeastern Poultry Congress held its 43rd annual poultry show, Jan. 16 and 17, at the Eastern States Exposition Fairgrounds in West Springfield, MA. There were a total of 306 exhibitors with 2,946 fowl on display making this once again the biggest poultry show in New England. Attendees enjoyed free admission to the event, which offered plenty of things to do including friendly competitions, poultry sales, informative seminars, varieties of vendors, raffles and plenty of bird watching.

Various classes of poultry were on display during the two-day event including large fowl, bantams, waterfowls, turkeys, pigeons, and the trio classic, which consists of one male and two females of the same breed, variety and age. Contestants had plenty of time to prepare their birds with various cleaning, grooming and styling techniques. Licensed judges performed careful inspections of the birds and awarded ribbons and cash prizes to the best in show. [Read more…]

The new American farmer

CE-MR-1-American-Farmer471by Troy Bishopp

HAMILTON, NY — Students equipped with their smartphones and tablets packed a lecture room at Colgate University to learn about, of all things: The new American farmer. Dr. Laura-Anne Minkoff-Zern, Assistant Professor of Food Studies from Syracuse University’s Falk College gave a perspective and presented research about Latino immigrant farmworkers striving to become farm owners. According to the USDA Ag Census, this is the largest population of new farmers entering agriculture.

In her lecture: “The New American Farmer: Agrarian Questions, Race, and Immigration”, the Cornell graduate explored the significance of farmworkers and other first-generation Latino immigrants to the United States aspiring to be small-scale farmers and their agrarian contributions in changing the food system landscape. Dr. Minkoff-Zern’s field exploration embodied her extensive experience with sustainable development and agricultural biodiversity projects abroad, combined with work on migrant health issues domestically after spending many years working on farms and with agriculture and food organizations in Guatemala, New York, Virginia and California. [Read more…]