Jahnke’s Hemlock Valley Dairy Farm ~ Working together for success

CE-MR-3-Hemlock Valley4by Elizabeth A. Tomlin
The sign on the front of the main barn, facing highway 28 in Milford, NY, says it all.
“Hemlock Valley Farm, the Jahnke’s – working together” the sign proclaims.

Jahnkes received the sign as a gift in the early ‘90s.
“The working together motto is one that we always fall back on when things get ‘testy’,” remarks Matt Jahnke. “I believe that is our biggest strength and it’s why we are so successful; it’s our ability to work together not only as business partners, but as a family.” [Read more…]

Creekside Meadows Farm: grazing holistically

CE-MR-1-Creekside723by Tamara Jean Scully
The Park family has grown. Tricia and Matt Park, along with son Cameron, 17, recently moved from their 26 acre farm to a nearby 150 acre one, in DeRuyter, NY, and have been working tirelessly to improve the soils as they grow pasture for 20 head of beef cattle, 50 turkeys, 800 meat chicken and 30 pigs.

The key to their success is grass. Managing pastures for better forage has led to increased weight gain, decreased need for inputs on the farm, and “high-quality, pasture-raised meats” sold directly to customers via a meat CSA, the farm store and an online farmers’ market. The family practices Holistic Management, considering the health of the land, the animals, the community and the family — which includes being profitable and having time for non-farming respites — when managing and setting goals for the farm. [Read more…]

New regulations will burden farmers and small-scale food producers – raising prices and reducing availability of good food for consumers.

5154_100054106834_211950_nCongress passed the Food Safety Modernization Act to address the increasing problem of foodborne illnesses. But Congress left a lot of the details up to the Food & Drug Administration (FDA), and FDA is abusing that authority! The agency has proposed new regulations that pose significant problems for farmers, local food producers, and food hubs across the country. There are 2 proposed rules, The “Produce Rule” and the “Preventative Controls Rule”. [Read more…]

NYCAMH Helps Rural Farming Community Stay Sun Wise

Fly Creek, NY–For over two decades the New York Center for Agricultural Medicine and Health (NYCAMH) has been teaching rural farming communities the importance of sun safety. It is estimated that one in five Americans will develop skin cancer in the course of a lifetime. Outdoor occupations such as farming increase a person’s risk for developing skin cancer due to the prolonged exposure to the harmful UV rays of the sun.
[Read more…]

Artisan cheesemaker speaks out on FSMA impacts

CN-MR-3-Artisan cheesemaker 3by Sanne Kure-Jensen
Small farmers everywhere will be impacted by Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) rules. In a recent webinar, Lori Babcock, co-owner of Tieton Farm & Creamery in Tieton, WA described the devastating impact of large Food & Drug Administration (FDA) fees and FSMA recordkeeping burdens on her livestock farms and dairy. She shared her concerns in a webinar called “FSMA — Its Impact on Artisan Cheesemakers” hosted by the Washington State Department of Agriculture (WSDA) Office of Compliance & Outreach. [Read more…]