In memoriam of Tina Marie (Acker) Giangiacom

Tina Marie (Acker) Giangiacomo, 58, of Reading, PA passed away April 7 in Lancaster General Hospital. She was the wife of Michael Giangiacomo.

Born in Chester Springs, PA she was the daughter of the late Sam and Charlotte Acker.

Tina was a graduate of Downingtown High School and West Chester University. She was a member of West Wyomissing Chapel. Tina enjoyed fishing, gardening and cooking. [Read more…]

Bovine fatty acids

by Katie Navarra

Organic dairies and conventional dairies that maximize grazing are at an advantage in the marketplace. Consumers are willing to pay more for products identified as been grass fed and rich in omega-3 fatty acids. Both are natural benefits for milk and meat cattle largely raised on pasture and forage.

A two-year study by Cargill reported that 98 percent of consumers understand what omega-3 fatty acids are and they will pay more and choose omega-3 products over others,” said Melissa Bainbridge, a Ph.D. student at the University of Vermont. [Read more…]

Don’t get stuck! Preventing needle stick injuries in agricultural settings

CEW-MR-1-Don't-get-stuc1k1by Elizabeth A. Tomlin

Needle stick injuries (NSI) in agricultural settings have become more focused on by Ag health and injury prevention personnel.

In a recent farm safety workshop, where graphic photos resulting from NSI were shown, James Carrabba, Agricultural Safety Specialist for New York Center for Agricultural Medicine and Health (NYCAMH), reported that studies show over 80 percent of farmers have had an NSI.

Heading up one of those studies is Dr. Jeff Bender, Co-Director of the Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health Center (UMASH). [Read more…]

Beware the allium leaf miner

CM-MR-38-2-Allium-leaf-miner21by Steve Wagner

How does a plant pest whose existence was not chronicled before 1858 in England, cross the Atlantic Ocean 158 years later to land on a farm in Lancaster County, PA? That is the travel history of the allium Leaf Miner. This pest, native to Poland and Germany, first spread across Europe into Turkey, Russia and Asia during that time span. “One possibility is someone bringing garlic over,” says Penn State Extension Specialist Tim Elkner. “The pupa might have been down amongst the cloves. Certainly, it could have been brought in with leeks or onions. It’s just that this is not typically the kind of thing that would be transported around. Probably it was not an insect — most likely a group of them in order to start the population. You need male and female in a bunch, so it might have been like an infected shipment of garlic or something was sent over.” [Read more…]

Soil Health: Managing soil pH, managing cover crops, reducing tillage

by Katie Navarra

Traditionally, production and yield were a farmer’s primary focus. Today, the environmental impact of farming practices is also among the top priorities for many farmers. “We only used to look at the production of our fields,” said Donn Branton, owner of Branton Farms, LLC in LeRoy, NY, “today our goals include leaving the soil a little better than when we started working it.” [Read more…]