The answer is yes

CN-MR-2-SanghaFarm1by Laura Rodley

Maribeth Ritchie of Sangha Farm in Plainfield, MA makes goat cheese: chevre, feta, brie, St. Jerome, cheddar and Trappist, plus more. Feta sells so quickly she can’t keep it in stock at the Western Massachusetts stores where she and her husband, Derek Ritchie, deliver it.

In 2000, they raised and sold organic vegetables in Maine at their Sangha Farm, then relocated to Ashfield, MA, renting a 1670 house and land, growing organic vegetables under animal power — two oxen purchased at 48 hours old, Moses and Abraham. That was 2004. [Read more…]

Getting in sync: grassland birds and forage

CN-MR-2-Grasslandbirdsby Tamara Scully

For farmers who’ve been watching wildlife activity on pastures or hayfields during the past 10 years, a decline in the number of grassland birds won’t come as much of a surprise. For those who’ve been watching for the past 40 years, the change is even more significant. Grassland birds — bobolinks, Savannah sparrows, Eastern meadowlarks and others — have suffered a decline of 75 percent over the last four decades. At that rate, they will soon be extinct. Unless something changes. [Read more…]

Selling Connecticut: More on the Connecticut Agriculture Commission Conference

CN-MR-2-CT AGPartTwo1by George Looby, DVM

Continued from last week’s coverage on the Connecticut Agriculture Commission Conference.

John Waite, Executive Director of the Franklin County Community Development Corporation, greeted afternoon attendees following the lunch break at the the Third Annual Connecticut Agriculture Commission Conference on Saturday, April 5 in Hampton, CT. Waite manages the New England Food Processors in western Massachusetts, which processes raw ingredients from local farms to create value added product. Working agreements are made with each farmer selling to the processor. In season, this plant processes 2000-3000 lbs. of produce daily. [Read more…]

Manure injection for ammonia conservation

CEWM-MR-2-Manure injection411by Sally Colby

It’s a given that manure application has the potential to cause conflict with neighbors, but it can also cause conflicts between the farm’s nutrient management plan and its conservation plan.

Doug Beegle, who conducted manure research at Penn State University, says nutrient management plans often recommend manure incorporation, but the conservation plan for the farm will often recommend no-till. [Read more…]

Preparing a market lamb for show season

CEWN-MR-2-Preparing 1by Sally Colby

Competing in market lamb and showmanship classes is hard work, but that work pays off. Proper fitting of a market lamb for the show ring involves a sound feed and exercise program as well as grooming preparation before the show.

Start the season with a calendar — mark down the dates of every show you plan to attend, from local to regional or even national. Select lambs that have the frame and growth potential that will keep them gaining steadily until show or market time. When you purchase the lamb, request a record of the lamb’s health, including the dates of immunizations and dewormings. Ask which product was used for deworming so that you can switch to a different product if necessary. Most club lambs require a CD&T booster as well as regular deworming. Watch withdrawal dates on all medications, and use clean needles and proper technique when administering vaccines. [Read more…]