Young boy wins big in Denver

CN-MR-3-Young boy 1by Sally Colby

When seven-year-old Austin Petow was given the opportunity to show a Lowline heifer by the name of Frosty, his parents Bruce and Lisa agreed that it would be a great learning experience for their son.

But Frosty needed some work. She had never seen a person the size of Austin, and was afraid of him. When Frosty arrived at the Petow’s farm in Vernon, CT in March of 2013, the Petows had to come up with a plan to make sure Austin and Frosty got to know one another safely. [Read more…]

Training the Trainers, an Agvocate workshop

by George Looby, DVM
A program has been developed in northeastern Connecticut to encourage, foster and develop agricultural activities of all types. From its modest beginnings it has grown from a program with seven participating towns to over 14 and growing. The Agvocate Program evolved from a grant to the Town of Thompson five years ago and is now a well-defined program that is supportive of agriculture in many ways. The Agvocate Program has been defined as a grassroots program that empowers farmers, citizens and municipal decision makers to leverage partnerships, enact farm-friendly policies and regulations, provide tax incentives and revive the agricultural culture within towns. [Read more…]

Advanced learning and on-farm networking with NAFDMA

C4-MR-3-NAFDMA 3by Emily Enger

They’re farmers. They’re growers. They’re businesspeople. They’re entertainers. When your job includes doing everything, often the vocabulary at your disposal is limiting. So now, they’re writers, as well, having coined a new term to describe what they do.

“We’re trying to train ourselves to say ‘entrepeneurial farmers,’” explained NAFDMA’s Director of Membership and Resources Virginia Schwarzenbach.

These newly-dubbed ‘entrepeneurial farmers’ make up the membership of the North American Farmers’ Direct Marketing Association (NAFDMA), a 501(c)3 Membership Association reaching throughout the United States and Canada. And when these busy folks are in the so-called “off-season” — the petting farms and corn mazes are shut down and the orchard is under frost — they get together for a lengthy, indepth, six day annual convention. This year it was held Jan. 31-Feb. 5 in Kansas City, MO and was titled “Makin’ Hey in the Heartland.” [Read more…]

Maine Agricultural Trades Show on farmers markets

by Terry Lynn Colligan
On Jan. 8, at the annual Maine Agricultural Trades show, Hanne Tierney of Cornerstone Farm in Palmyra, gave attendees an overview of her experiences being involved in four of Maine’s farmers markets.

Tierney said picking the markets that worked for their farm was, “a little like picking a tractor — little one, big one…” until she got the market that just worked well for their farm. [Read more…]

More than 8,000 cattlemen and women attend convention

CEWN-MR-Cattle convention21by Rebecca Long Chaney

NASHVILLE, TN — More than 8,000 Cattlemen and Cattlewomen arrived at the National Cattle Industry Convention to attend meetings, be inspired by speakers and special guests, enjoy the trade show and network with cattle friends from coast to coast and overseas.

Whether beef producers wanted to learn new trends in the industry by visiting the more than 300 exhibitors in the trade show or take in meetings and workshops, there was something for everyone in Nashville. The convention marks the largest annual gathering of the beef industry and included special meetings of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), American National CattleWomen (ANCW), as well as the Certified Beef Board (CBB). [Read more…]