Growing and harvesting hops

CN-MR-3-Growing and 1by Sanne Kure-Jensen
Ocean State Hops has brought hop farming back to Rhode Island. Brother-in-laws and co-owners, Matt Richardson and Joel Littlefield liked brewing hoppy homebrews and started growing their own hops in 2007. Since 2010, their ever-expanding hop yard allowed the team to offer excess hops to home brewers.
Since 2012 the Coastal Extreme Brewery, brewer of Newport Storm Beers, has been purchasing all of Ocean State Hops’ Chinook hops.

Ocean State Hops is the only hop farm in Rhode Island, growing on a quarter acre in Exeter. The hop yard expands each year and now has over 400 American hop plants in three varieties: Cascade, Chinook and Newport hops. [Read more…]

The Northeast Highland Cattle Association Fall Show

CN-MR-2-The Northeast 1by George Looby, DVM
The fall show of the Northeast Highland Cattle Association was held in the Mallary Arena located on the grounds of the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, MA Oct. 10-12. This show drew exhibitors from throughout the northeast, providing breeders the opportunity to compete against their peers, allowing winners to be recognized as the best in the region. Exhibitors were present from Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, New York and Pennsylvania with 15 farms represented. A total of 66 head were shown in 18 divisions. The judge for the event was Kevin Woolam associated with the Central Connecticut Co-op in Manchester, CT. [Read more…]

Next generation looks to robotic milking at Kooser Farms, LLC

CM-MR-3-Next generation 1by Jon M. Casey
At the open house and farm tour at the Center for Dairy Excellence, Joe Kooser was sharing his thoughts about his family farm’s upgrade to a robotic milking facility, featuring two, DeLaval VMS™ Robotic Milking systems. Joe explained to friends gathered nearby that his being able to attend this day’s events without worrying about the cows is one of the reasons that prompted him and his father Steve to switch to a robotic system after using a pipeline milking system for more than four decades.

Today, Joe and Steve are able to milk upwards of 120 cows. At the same time, they can do fieldwork as well as have free time to attend events. [Read more…]

Charlie Drumheller tests strip grazing on switchgrass

CM-MR-2-Charlie Drumheller 2by Karl H. Kazaks
SWOOPE, VA — With the abundance of pasture forage available this year thanks to mild temperatures and abundant rainfall, the availability of summer grazing resources may not be on the top of every grazier’s mind.
But warm season grasses can be a good investment even when your fescue and other cool-season stands are thriving (not to mention insurance against hot droughty summers). Not only can warm season grasses be harvested for hay at times when hay equipment isn’t in as high demand, but there are other ways to utilize warm season grasses — such as for energy and bedding. [Read more…]

Blue and gold forever

CEWM-MR-2-Blue and gold 2by Steve Wagner
Ignite the Night, an FFA event, was appropriately named. The function at the Sheraton in Harrisburg, PA was further described as the 10th annual Blue and Gold Ball for FFA alumni. Besides alumni, a look around the ballroom would reveal the presence of two of the three Pennsylvania dairy princesses. Long time hog farmer and recent chicken farmer Chris Hoffman displayed one of his hidden talents as a program emcee and disc jockey. [Read more…]