Grasstravaganza 2019: Finding inspiration in natural systems

2019-09-16T08:53:26-05:00September 16, 2019|Eastern Edition, Western Edition|

by Troy Bishopp

New York’s NRCS Resource Conservationist, Ed Henry, set the stage of Grasstravaganza 2019 by quoting Thomas Jefferson’s understanding of a strong agronomic economy as the backbone of a nation: “Agriculture is our wisest pursuit because it will in the end contribute most to real wealth, good morals and happiness.” Henry believes the adoption of properly managed grazing is one of the most efficient ways to produce food for New York consumers and inspired the capacity crowd to grasp the possibilities. (more…)

Hemp talk gathers big crowd at Empire Farm Days

2019-09-04T13:56:50-05:00September 4, 2019|Western Edition|

by Deborah Jeanne Sergeant

SENECA FALLS, NY — A standing-room only crowd gathered at Empire Farm Days to hear Larry Smart, professor, plant geneticist and breeder for Cornell’s School of Integrative Plant Science Horticulture Section. The size of the group demonstrated their apparent interest in getting in on the ground floor of the growing and profitable hemp industry in New York. But before operators rush to sow their acres in hemp, Smart offered a few caveats. (more…)

Beef handling vital to cattle health

2019-09-16T13:55:19-05:00September 4, 2019|Eastern Edition, Western Edition|

by Deborah Jeanne Sergeant

SENECA FALLS, NY – Cattle handling for vet appointments and routine procedures is “an extremely important part of raising cattle and it’s part of the Beef Quality Assurance program,” said Mike Baker, Ph.D., beef cattle Extension specialist with Cornell University. Baker led a presentation on beef cattle chutes at the recent Empire Farm Days. The presentation highlighted several features of various chutes in a live cattle demonstration. Presenters showed how beef producers can effectively use them to improve handling cattle to reduce stress in cattle and make cattlemen’s tasks easier. (more…)

Dairy Princess encourages farmers to tell their story

2019-09-04T08:57:32-05:00September 4, 2019|Western Edition|

by Elizabeth A. Tomlin

Seventeen-year old Sophie Woodis of Country Ayre Farms, LLC, Dewittville, Chautauqua County, NY, has found her voice.

“I was a dairy ambassador for 5 years,” Woodis explained. “Then last year I was the Alternate Chautauqua County Dairy Princess, and now this year I am the Chautauqua County Dairy Princess, so it’s been about 7 years now that I have been in the program. At the beginning when I was an ambassador, I was pretty quiet — well, I am still pretty quiet — but, now I think it’s fun to talk to people and teach them about what we do.” (more…)

Showing is a family affair

2019-09-04T08:47:48-05:00September 4, 2019|Western Edition|

by Deborah Jeanne Sergeant

CANANDAIGUA, NY — For Blue Heaven Farm in Stanley, showing at regional livestock events is a family affair. Mom Brooke Smithling took her daughter Samantha, 5, son Emmett, 8, nieces Amy, 16 and Morgan 18, plus Megan Castano, 9, a 4-H friend, to the Ontario County Fair recently. Showing at events such as this provides a bonding experience for the family, as well as promotes the growing farm. (more…)

PA Milk Marketing Board releases opinion survey report

2019-09-03T15:30:50-05:00September 3, 2019|Western Edition|

The Pennsylvania Milk Marketing Board has released the Dairy Producers’ Opinion Survey Report. The 47-page report, authored by Consumer Member Carol Hardbarger, Ph.D., analyzes and evaluates data collected by the board regarding Pennsylvania dairy producer knowledge of Pennsylvania’s milk pricing system, including the over-order premium. The report also categorizes producer opinions regarding Pennsylvania’s milk pricing system and relates suggestions for change related to those opinions. (more…)

Custom grazing workshop shows potential in raising replacement heifers

2019-09-16T09:00:45-05:00August 29, 2019|Eastern Edition, Western Edition|

by Elizabeth A. Tomlin

South Central NY Dairy and Field Crops Team member, Mary Kate Wheeler, Farm Business Management, Cornell Cooperative Extension (CCE), led a team effort, along with custom grazing farm owner/operator Tim Virgil, Fabius, NY, and Fay Benson, Grazing Educator, CCE, South Central NY, Dairy and Field Crops Team, in a pasture walk at Virgil’s 40 to 50 heifer, custom grazing operation. (more…)