Hiring your farm workers through H2A ~ part 1

CN-MR-1-Hiring-workers-part1-1413by Bill and Mary Weaver

“It would certainly be ideal if growers could put an ad in the newspaper, accept applications, and hire American workers,” stated Kerry Scott of MAS Labor. Unfortunately, that approach isn’t working. For example, a grower/packer near Reno, NV needs 1725 seasonal laborers. Some of the work offered is in an air-conditioned packing shed, and even the fieldwork doesn’t involve actual “stoop labor.” Harvesting is done mechanically, with workers at the back of the harvesting machines. The grower also pays very well.

“The area around Reno, Nevada has the highest unemployment in Nevada, and most of the time, Nevada has the highest unemployment in the country,” Scott continued, speaking at the Mid Atlantic Fruit and Vegetable Growers Convention recently. “The grower ran ‘Help Wanted’ ads in the local papers. They had zero applicants for these well-paying jobs!” [Read more…]

Northeast Agribusiness and Feed Alliance addresses key industry issues

ALBANY, NY — Over 200 members of the Northeast Agribusiness and Feed Alliance attended two days of panel discussions, presentations and networking opportunities during the organization’s 2016 annual meeting and forum held Feb. 2 and 3 in Albany, NY.

The event kicked off with a trip to the New York State Capital where five groups of Alliance members met with 18 legislators, or their staff, to discuss their strong concerns about the proposed $15 New York minimum wage. The small group meetings provided Alliance members the opportunity advocate their positions and provide insight into the economic importance of northeast agricultural businesses. [Read more…]

Feeding lower-starch diets to dairy cattle

CW-MR-1-Feeding-low-starch1by Heather Dann and Luiz Ferraretto, William H. Miner Agricultural Research Institute, Chazy, NY

Fermentable carbohydrates are the main energy source in diets of high-producing dairy cows and play a major role in microbial growth and protein synthesis in the rumen. Neutral detergent fiber (NDF), soluble fiber, starch, and sugars are the main carbohydrate sources. Although these varied carbohydrate sources can be used for energy, they differ in fermentation end-products produced by rumen microorganisms, which in turn alter metabolism and performance by dairy cows. [Read more…]

Art Whitman honored at Northeast Agribusiness and Feed Alliance annual meeting

CN-MR-1-NE-Agri-Whitman1qby Elizabeth A. Tomlin

Art Whitman of North Bennington, VT, was presented with the Distinguished Service Award by the Northeast Agribusiness and Feed Alliance “for a lifetime of dedication and service to the agriculture industry” at the 2016 annual meeting and forum in Albany.

“Honesty”, “integrity”, and “a hard working individual,” who was very active in legislative issues and led his community and the agricultural industry, in service over his entire life, were comments used by his peers to describe Whitman. [Read more…]