Lucas praises House passage of Farm Bill conference report

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Chairman Frank Lucas issued the following statement Jan. 29 after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Agricultural Act of 2014 by a vote of 251-166.

“I am pleased a majority of my House colleagues joined me in supporting a five-year, comprehensive farm bill. I appreciate the efforts of everyone who helped get us here. This is legislation we can all be proud of because it fulfills the expectations the American people have of us. They expect us to work together to find ways to reduce the cost of the federal government. The Agricultural Act contributes major savings to deficit reduction, significant reforms to policy, and yet still provides a safety net not only for the production of American food and fiber, but also to ensure our fellow citizens have enough food to eat. I am hopeful this legislation will enjoy the same success when the Senate considers it, and I encourage the president to sign it quickly into law,” said Chairman Frank Lucas. [Read more…]

Blame it on REO: an Avian REO virus update

C4-MR-2-Blame it 2by Steve Wagner

REO virus is a malady that appears and goes away, only to re-appear now and then, here and there, seemingly defying any pattern of severity or species. It is so hard to spot that often only vigilant farmers and/or veterinarians who conduct more than cursory examinations are likely to become suspicious of an REO virus presence. At a recent annual Penn-Ag sponsored Meat & Egg Meeting held at Shady Maple in Lancaster County PA, Dr. Donna Kelly, interim head of Clinical Microbiology at the University of Pennsylvania’s School of Veterinary Medicine PADLS New Bolton Center, brought an audience up to speed on the REO. [Read more…]

Young woman carving a spot in antique tractor pulling

CEWM-MR-2-Young woman 1by Sally Colby

The tractors lining the arena looked like a testimony to mid-20th century farming. Brand names included Case, Allis-Chalmers, Minneapolis Moline, Massey-Harris and lots of John Deere, many restored to use after being discarded in favor of new models. And if it weren’t for the polished paint and shiny stacks on the 60-year old tractors, they’d look just as at home working a field. [Read more…]

Improving fiber production through nutrition

CEW-MR-1-Improving fiberby Tamara Scully

Producing wool doesn’t start with shearing the sheep; it begins well before birth. Two primary factors which affect wool quality are genetics and nutrition. Dr. Nancy Irlbeck, of the University of Colorado — a sheep farmer herself — discussed the importance of nutrition in fiber development, offering producers tools to use to grow quality fleece. [Read more…]