Agricultural training programs designed for veterans should include plenty of hands-on experiences for this high-energy group. Norm Conrad, Northeast Director of the National Center for Appropriate Technology (NCAT) strongly suggests having extra materials on-hand as well as an extra group exercise or activity in the curriculum. Veterans are often more focused, productive and efficient than other workshop attendees. Continue reading
EAST SYRACUSE, NY — As a sought-after professional speaker and radio commentator, Steve Gilliland logs thousands of miles on the road each day. It would be easy for him to lose direction and a sense of purpose.
It doesn’t happen, however, because he remembers the dark days that forced him to examine his life and take control.
Gilliland was the keynote speaker at the New York Farm Bureau’s Fusion Forum: “Fusing Purpose, Passion & Pride to Ignite Your Potential” at the DoubleTree hotel in East Syracuse in March. It was the first of two days of lectures and workshops aimed primarily at young farmers and ranchers. Continue reading
by Tamara Scully
Are you hearing that rumble? If some of the top grazing specialists in the Northeast have their way, you will be. They’ve organized together to develop a potential new source of agricultural income, a innovative means of utilizing non-prime farmland, a means of keeping lands in agriculture, and a way to promote the actual grazing of livestock as a reliable feed source.
About 100 people attended the inaugural 2015 Northeast Contract Grazing Summit, held in late March in Morrisville, NY. Hosted by the Weaver Family Farm, and organized by Troy Bishopp, Madison County Soil and Water Conservation District Grazing Specialist, aka “The Grass Whisperer.” The event brought together a diverse group of farmers, grazing experts, butchers, and legal and insurance industry representatives, all of whom offered advice, shared successes and learning experiences, and underscored the real opportunities which contract grazing can bring to the region’s agricultural community.
“We think this is good for New York. We keep trying to get someone to listen, now we’re just doing it,” Bishopp said, indicating a team that includes Brett Chedzoy, Mike Baker, Steven Lorraine and many other of the workshops speakers. Continue reading
Now New Hampshire and PA Extensions have a grant-funded calibration unit that can quickly and accurately measure the output of each nozzle on the sprayer. In Pennsylvania, the cost to the grower is $50 for the first sprayer and $35 for a second one. The rest of the expenses, estimated at $200, are paid for by grant funds supplied by the PA Department of Agriculture and the State Horticulture Association of PA. The calibration unit has eight cylinders, each with a quick-connect hose that connects to the nozzles on your air blast sprayer. “The unit does the job with precision,” says Dr. Kerry Richards, Director of the Pesticide Education Program for Penn State Extension. According to Richards, the grower can see on the unit which of his nozzles are ‘off’ and not working properly. “What’s at stake is your bottom line,” Continue reading