Shirks introduce new genetics, expand flock of breeding ewes

cm-mr-53-3-shirks-9658by Bill and Mary Weaver

Quentin and Anita Shirk moved with their family and their breeding ewes from a smaller farm in southeastern PA to their current 100 acres in New Columbia in northern Union County in 2010. With the move, they gained plenty of space for pasture rotation; wooded sections of pastures for shade for their sheep; 3 natural water sources; and top-quality (river bottom) soil, which benefits both their pastures and their produce operation. [Read more…]

Llamas at the Big E

cn-mr-33-1-llamas-at-bigeby Laura Rodley

Visitors might have thought they had been magically transported to Peru or Bolivia when they entered the llama barn at the Big E. After all, the Big E is the Disneyland of animals and livestock. Llamas and alpacas of all shades and their young were in abundance and being cared for by their owners, being readied for showing. Rather than the llamas guarding their livestock, some owners slept in sleeping bags guarding their llamas. [Read more…]

Center for Agricultural Development and Entrepreneurship provides dairy farmers opportunity

cew-mr-2-cade1by Elizabeth A. Tomlin

The first of three, free, incubator workshops focusing on added value dairy products offered by Center for Agricultural Development and Entrepreneurship (CADE) took place on Oct. 3.

“Dairy farmers are currently having a difficult time covering the costs of production,” said CADE’s Executive Director Rebecca Morgan. “Dairy value added product development makes sense as a more viable direction for many dairy farmers. [Read more…]

Allentown Fair Recognition Night honors valley agricultural supporters

ALLENTOWN, PA — Highlighting its roots and reason for being, The Great Allentown Fair held its annual “Agriculture Recognition Night” during the 2016 fair to honor accomplished students and adults that have contributed to Pennsylvania’s number one industry.

The ceremony was held recently inside the Agri-Plex exhibition building sponsored by Lehigh Valley Health Network while the fair was in full swing. [Read more…]

The 60th Pennsylvania Dairy Princess Coronation

cew-mr-26-3-60th-pa-dairy913by Steve Wagner

The first thing regular attendees to this year’s coronation might have noticed is a general upgrading of the quality in the trimmings of the affair. At the doors outside the banquet room stood an easel with a diagram of table locations so ticket holders could see before entering exactly where they were located. “In previous years,” said PA Dairy Princess Promotion Services Administrative Director Laura Daubert, “not doing that seemed to translate into a minor disaster.” [Read more…]