Celebrating Agriculture 2013

CN-MR-3-Celebrating 1by George Looby, DVM
For the past dozen years a group of interested citizens in the Town of Woodstock, CT have sponsored and produced an event which they call Celebrating Agriculture. The day focuses strictly on the people in Woodstock and surrounding communities who earn their living working in one of the many phases of agriculture. [Read more…]

Fiber Festival of New England

CN-MR-2-Fiber Festival 1by George Looby, DVM
The many varied facets of New England agriculture was never more evident than on the weekend of Nov. 2-3, when producers of products made from animal fiber filled the Mallary Pavilion located on the grounds of the Eastern States Exposition in West Springfield, MA.

Today every New England State has a group of sheep breeders who promote the products those animals provide and these people were very much in evidence at this show. In recent years Alpacas have assumed an important role as a source of fiber for the production of a wide variety of articles. [Read more…]

The GMO controversy

CEWM-MR-2-The GMO 1by Steve Wagner
When freshman Pennsylvania legislator Mindy Fee became a state representative, she did so with an acute awareness of farming in her district. On Nov. 7, this interest manifested itself in the form of a farmer’s breakfast held in Manheim. She was fortunate to get Pennsylvania Agriculture Secretary George Greig to be the main speaker.

As the event got underway, Penn-Ag’s Jennifer Reed Harry gave a thumbnail presentation of some issues that resound with farmers, including GMOs. [Read more…]

Growing ancient grains: Value-added production

CEWM-MR-1-Ancient grains 1by Tamara Scully
The Organic Growers’ Research and Sharing Information Network (OGRIN), in conjunction with the Northeast Organic Farmers Association-NY, (NOFA-NY) and the Pennsylvania Association for Sustainable Agriculture (PASA), held a recent workshop on growing and processing grains. Farmer Elizabeth Dyck, founder and coordinator of OGRIN, addressed several dozen attendees interested in small scale grain production, and grain processing opportunities. [Read more…]

Contented animals pave the road to success at Happy Pasture Farm

CE-MR-2-Happy Pasture1by Pat Malin
NORTH BROOKFIELD, NY — A flock of white turkey hens is busy clucking, loudly announcing the arrival of a visitor to Happy Pasture Farm. Yet they remain blissfully unaware of the impending holidays and their fate.

Happy Pasture Farm raises and sells grass-fed, free range turkeys, ducks, chickens, guinea hens, pigs, rabbits and replacement heifers. It is gearing up for its first Thanksgiving and the outlook is favorable — for the farmer, that is. For the first time since Henry (Hank) Szewczyk Jr. began this endeavor last January, he has the enviable task of keeping up with demand. “Ever since the fourth of July, we’ve been busy,” Szewczyk said. “It’s been all word of mouth.” [Read more…]