Walk through milking

CN-MR-3-Walk through 2by Laura Rodley

Imagine a dairy farmer didn’t wake early to milk his cows at 3:30 a.m. or not have to return to milk again in the afternoon. Imagine cows getting milked when they want to, 24 hours a day, and if there is a problem with milking on the night shift, the herdsman receives a phone call at home alerting him to exactly what that problem is.

These advantages occur at Hill Lawn Farm LLC in Lee, MA, where the farm’s milker is neither milkman nor milkmaid, but a robot — two Lely Astronauts from Holland-based Lely company utilized since late September to milk the farm’s niche Jerseys. [Read more…]

New slaughterhouse and meat processing plant will open soon

CN-MR-1-New slaughterhouse 1by Bethany M. Dunbar

LYNDONVILLE, VT — The Northeast Kingdom will soon have a new slaughterhouse, butcher shop, retail local meat store, and meat processing plant in the industrial park in Lyndonville.

Scott Oeschger of Derby is the owner of Northeast Kingdom Processing. The general manager will be Denis Royer of Irasburg. Oeschger has bought Spring Hill Angus from Dan Maclure, and Bob Butterfield of Barton will be the general manager of the beef farm. [Read more…]

Marketing local meats — best practices

CN-MR-1-Marketing 1by Sanne Kure-Jensen

Do you have more meat in your farm freezer that you can sell? Do you have trouble reaching customers or getting the prices you should to keep your farm viable?

“Most farmers go into farming because they love farming, not because they love marketing,” said Matt LeRoux, an agricultural marketing specialist with Cornell’s Cooperative Extension. At a recent workshop offered by the Rhode Island Raised Livestock Association, he coached livestock farmers to offer messages that resonate with customers and grow product sales.
[Read more…]

Soybean growers recognized at annual Crop Producers Conference

CM-MR-1-Soybean growers 1by Sally Colby

Pennsylvania soybean growers working toward higher yields can compete regionally for individual as well as regional awards in the state’s growing contest.

In presenting the Pennsylvania Soybean Board awards for the 2013 growing season, Penn State Extension Educator Del Voight noted that the average yield for 2013 was 76.8 bu/acre, which he says reflects the trend toward an overall increase of one bushel/year.

Average seed drop among growers was 167,000 plants/acre, which is close to the recommended rate in Penn State’s agronomy guide. [Read more…]