Food waste gets second life as renewable energy on dairy farm

CN-28-3-Food-waste-gets1by Laura Hardie

Recycling is at the heart of dairy farming. Water is recycled to use on crops or to clean the milking parlor. Manure is recycled as fertilizer for the fields or converted into electricity on farms with cow power technology. Now, a Vermont farm has found a way to help their community recycle inedible food waste.

Blue Spruce Farm in Bridport, VT has a farm waste digester, which converts manure, food waste and farm by-products into natural fertilizer and energy to power 400 to 500 homes. They will soon be piloting a new project with Casella Organics to help communities understand the importance of properly separating food waste so that it can be collected and turned into a mixture that can be fed into the farm digester. [Read more…]

Attendees flock to Walpole, MA for inaugural Southern New England Shepherd’s Forum

CN-29-4-Attendees-4095by Paul Burdziakowski

The first biennial Southern New England Shepherd’s Forum was held March 5 at the Norfolk County Agricultural High School in Walpole, MA. A total of 108 attendees from all over New England came together for the opportunity to network with each other and learn about a wide range of topics within the sheep industry. The event offered plenty of activities to take part in for both adults and children including informative lectures, hands-on workshops and industry vendors. [Read more…]

The Livestock Institute of Southern New England

by Diana Mendes

A new USDA processing facility, The Livestock Institute of Southern New England (TLI) will break ground late spring 2016. The Institute will include a slaughterhouse, butcher shop, smokehouse and retail store to be centrally located in Westport, MA. TLI Board member David Brownell stated, “There is a huge demand for locally raised meat and the lack of local processing is holding the growth of livestock producers back. Farmers don’t want to drive four and a half hours to have livestock processed”. [Read more…]

Kids have “eggs-tra” fun time competing in poultry contests

CN-4H-1-Poultry-ski1llJOHNSON, VT — For 4-H members enrolled in the poultry project, March 5 was an “egg-citing” day as they competed for prizes at the annual University of Vermont (UVM) Extension 4-H Poultry Quiz Bowl and Skill-a-thon at Johnson State College in Johnson.

The youths competed in groups based on their level of poultry knowledge. The top four finishers in each division received awards and prizes including poultry magazines and educational materials. [Read more…]

Responding to demand at Manning Hill Farm

CN-56-3-Unusual-cows1by Kathleen Hatt

Sam Canonica and Sarah Costa chose their Dutch Belted cows not only for their milk but also for their small size, longevity, fertility, friendliness and forage efficiency. The Dutch Belteds are well suited for rotational grazing on 126-acre Manning Hill Farm in Winchester, NH.

From feeding to milking to bottling in glass to sales in their farm store, nearby farmers’ markets and grocery stores, Sarah and Sam handle all aspects of Manning Hill Farm’s production and sales themselves. Their priorities are healthy cows and clean milk. The herd’s somatic cell count (SCC) is consistently between 80,000 and 110,000. [Read more…]