News & Events

Precision Agriculture day slated for Aug. 5

Published Jul. 14, 2014

The event will focus on combines, precision harvest technology, grain handling, and data collection. Participants will hear from industry professionals in a variety of fields, including academia and law enforcement.

Why Big Ag is the Real American Agriculture

Published Jul. 14, 2014

This is a place where Michael Pollan and Dr. Oz have never been and represents farming on a scale they have never conceived. This is farming that produces the food that most people eat, but farming that is far removed from the concepts most consumers hold of how their food is produced and of the people who produce it.

Amid border crisis, farm groups call for immigration reform

Published Jul. 14, 2014

On July 9, a national group that included Ohio farmers and business leaders, took part in the National Day of Action for Immigration Reform — an effort to remind Washington lawmakers and the media about the importance of immigrant labor at U.S. farms.

2014 Farm Bill meetings

Published Jul. 14, 2014

Farmers interested in learning more about the 2014 Farm Bill and its impact on commodity programs can hear from industry experts during meetings scheduled for August 18, 19 and September 16 who will provide insight into the legislation and its impact on agriculture.

What Could Climate Change Mean for Agriculture?

Published Jul. 15, 2014

The recent paper Impact of Climate Change on the Water Cycle and Implications for Agriculture has tipped higher latitude areas for more rain in winter and summer.

Sellmans encouraging to young farm families like themselves

Published Jul. 15, 2014

Members of the Ohio Farm Bureau Young Agricultural Professionals visited the farm of Russ and Mendy Sellman in rural Galion as part of its summer outreach program

Legislation designed to boost Ohio agritourism

Published Jul. 15, 2014

Sen. Shannon Jones, R-Springboro, said Senate Bill 334 is designed to address many of the liability and regulatory challenges that affect the state’s agritourism industry. “Agritourism welcomes visitors to take part in operations on a farm; these activities can range from participating in a hayride to picking your own apples,” she said.

April showers didn’t stop Ohio crops

Published Jul. 16, 2014

Even though spring was chilly and wet, crops in Ohio have bounced back from delayed starts. Crops have flourished during the summer months, so much so that record amounts may be attained.

A new approach to farmer data

Published Jul. 16, 2014

One aspect of American agriculture that has been demonized over the past year is the collection of data. It grabbed many no-so-accepting headlines when the questions arose about not only what the data may be used for and who can use the data, but also who actually owns the data. One company that is taking an industry-changing approach is Climate Corporation.

Once a niche, local foods becoming big business

Published Jul. 16, 2014

Once a niche business, locally grown foods aren’t just for farmers markets anymore. A growing network of companies and organizations is delivering food directly from local farms to major institutions, eliminating scores of middlemen from farm to fork.

City park could show benefits of river dredgings

Published Jul. 16, 2014

An old city park on the Maumee River could soon become a demonstration site — complete with a farm field — to show the beneficial alternative uses of material dredged from the Toledo harbor shipping channel.

Sweet corn making its way to markets at last

Published Jul. 16, 2014

he wait for sweet corn proved longer than usual this year because of the harsh winter. With fields frozen, planting was delayed, said Mike Hogan, extension educator in agriculture and natural resources for the Ohio State University Extension in Franklin County.

Six Surprises About the State of the American Farm

Published Jul. 17, 2014

you'll want to turn to the latest Census of Agriculture (COA). Chances are you've never heard of it, but this comprehensive report, released every five years by the USDA, tracks the trendlines and changes affecting our farms and farmers, issuing a 700-page data set that offers a snapshot of American agriculture in a given year.

Calif. drought brings greatest agriculture water loss

Published Jul. 17, 2014

The UC-Davis report found that direct costs to agriculture total about $1.5 billion (which include revenue losses of $1 billion and $0.5 billion in additional pumping costs). This net revenue loss is about 3% of the state's total agricultural value.

Can agriculture appeal to today's youth? It can by emphasizing jobs.

Published Jul. 17, 2014

Simply put, for the majority of the world’s youth, agriculture simply isn’t seen as being “cool” or attractive. Most think of it only as back-breaking labor, without an economic pay-off—and little room for career advancement.

As Urban Agriculture’s Popularity Rises, What Are the Food Safety Concerns?

Published Jul. 17, 2014

As more neighborhoods integrate urban gardens and food forests into their communities, the question of food safety inevitably arises. While many organizers may not consider food safety a top logistical concern when planning a food forest, what types of food safety concerns do food forests need to address?

Legal issues with Palmer amaranth cropping up in Ohio

Published Jul. 17, 2014

Because of the presence of this noxious weed, the land has yet to be entered into the CRP, and the landowner cannot receive the CRP payment. The farming operation has been working for many months trying to remove this weed from the land, by killing it, removing it, and waiting to see if there is more germination.”

Ag Sees Clean Water Act Gap

Published Jul. 17, 2014

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy told farmers and agribusinesses on a trip to Missouri last week that agriculture essentially has ‘nothing to worry about’ and that ‘nothing will change’ with the proposed Clean Water Act rule. Yet many of the 204,416 public comments submitted so far to regulations.gov on the rule suggest the agency has a ways to go to convince the industry.

On-farm grain storage offers farmers higher profit potential and flexibility

Published Jul. 18, 2014

Given opportunities for higher return on investment and more flexibility at harvest, experts said on-farm grain storage can be a key component of any farmer’s grain marketing plan.

OHIO CATTLE RANCHERS REBUILDING HERDS

Published Jul. 18, 2014

High prices, unrelenting demand and decent weather have Ohio’s cattle herds once again on the rise. Buckeye ranchers added 2 percent to their stock this year over last, one of the few states to do so, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said.

ODA is spreading the word on sensitive crops

Published Jul. 18, 2014

COLUMBUS — Seeing an Ohio soybean crop being sprayed with herbicide in July used to be as likely as a summer snowfall on the same field. But concerns that such late-season applications of herbicides like dicamba and 2,4-D could become more common has led to the development of the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s Ohio Sensitive Crop Registry (OSCR).

Seeking to avoid the boom and bust cycle of Ohio oil and gas

Published Jul. 18, 2014

Boom, then bust. It’s a scenario often played out in local economies heavily reliant on one type of industry. And it’s an underlying concern for Ohio communities currently experiencing a boom in shale oil and gas development. But the cycle isn’t inescapable, say Ohio State University Extension experts. They have received funding to help eastern Ohio communities.

Ohio inmates gardening for a difference

Published Jul. 18, 2014

PORTSMOUTH -- Prison inmates of the Southern Ohio Correctional Facility have been known to work together and complete community service projects that benefit various area organizations. Most recently, the inmates have grown flats of flowers through their agriculture group and donated them to various gardens operated through the Scioto Soil and Water Conservation District (SWCD).

Hord Livestock pigs now virus-free

Published Jul. 21, 2014

BUCYRUS — Although a deadly virus continues to impact pigs across Ohio as fair season ramps up, one of Crawford County’s largest livestock producers recently was successful at eradicating the disease.

Drones could be used to spy on farms

Published Jul. 21, 2014

An independent journalist says he's found a way around the so-called "ag-gag" laws by flying drones over large livestock operations to document animal welfare problems and pollution.

Banking on farm-to-table trend: You kill it, hotels cook it

Published Jul. 21, 2014

Farm-to-table meals have become so popular that hotels are now getting in the game with an even closer-to-the-source experience by offering chef-prepared meals using food hooked, foraged or shot by their guests.

2 ag-gag laws facing federal court challenges

Published Jul. 21, 2014

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The years-long fight between farm organizations and animal rights activists over laws prohibiting secretly filmed documentation of animal abuse is moving from state legislatures to federal courts as laws in Utah and Idaho face constitutional challenges.

OSU Extension celebrates 100 years

Published Jul. 21, 2014

NEWARK — Persistent rain and dreary skies could not dampen the determination of visitors to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the Ohio State University Cooperative Extension.

OHIO FARMERS GETTING FOOD TO 'HUNGRY PEOPLE'

Published Jul. 21, 2014

WOOSTER, Ohio -- As the world population increases, so do the challenges for the agricultural industry, according to Philip Shull, an agricultural counselor for the USDA Foreign Agriculture Service. The Wooster native, most recently posted at the U.S. Embassy in the Philippines, described the challenges when he spoke at a Wooster Kiwanis meeting.

Compensatory loss emphasis of new farm bill

Published Jul. 22, 2014

Two years ago, farmers in the four-county Toledo metro area collected more than $10.5 million in direct payments from the federal government, a subsidy program that had become increasingly seen as a poor use of taxpayer money. Starting this year, those payments disappear.

'Farm Factor' feeding more than food to local consumers

Published Jul. 22, 2014

A hunger for food is something that will always be a part of our ever-growing society, but what is recently being added to the appetite of many consumers is a hunger of knowledge concerning where their food is coming from. The Ross County Farm Bureau is satisfying both cravings with their yearly Farm Factor event, a four-course progressive meal served on four different farms in the county.

Sick, Abused Horses Overwhelming Rescuers

Published Jul. 22, 2014

CENTRAL OHIO - Dozens of sick and malnourished horses are overwhelming local rescuers. The numbers continue to grow, and by Monday there were 37 horses rescued by the Ohio Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals (OSPCA).

USDA Crop Progress Report Shows Corn Condition Unchanged

Published Jul. 22, 2014

U.S. corn remained at 76% good to excellent, while soybean's improved one point to 73% in USDA's weekly crop progress and condition report on Monday.

Ohio and Michigan are in a pickle by being out of pickles

Published Jul. 23, 2014

First it was tomatoes; this summer Northwest Ohio and Southeast Michigan fresh-market pickle producers will lose millions of dollars because farmers can’t attract enough migrant workers to pick their crops.

Solon residents to vote on farm animals, zoning changes in November

Published Jul. 23, 2014

SOLON, Ohio -- Solon residents will have the opportunity to vote on the controversial farming regulations proposed by the city this fall.

Columbus to spread more wastewater sludge on farm fields

Published Jul. 23, 2014

The city wants to spread its wastewater sludge on farm fields rather than burn it and dump it into landfills. To do that, Columbus will spend $3.2 million to design storage tanks to hold the sludge.

Boost of chicken consumption in U.S.

Published Jul. 23, 2014

More chickens are crossing the road and on to consumers' plates, according to new research presented today at the National Chicken Council's Chicken Marketing Seminar in Greensboro, Georgia.

In Ohio cow country, he’s making cheese from a herd of goats

Published Jul. 23, 2014

WAUSEON, Ohio — The flat land and fertile fields of northwest Ohio are an ideal place to grow corn and soybeans and graze cattle. One farmer has decided it’s also ideal for goats.

Ohio State Fair butter sculptures honor state’s history

Published Jul. 23, 2014

The Ohio State Fair butter surprise this year? A multitude of sculptures depicting the symbols and signs associated with Ohio, including a cardinal, a ladybug and a carnation.

Pipeline to carry natural-gas liquids from Ohio to Texas moving forward

Published Jul. 23, 2014

Plans for a pipeline to carry natural-gas liquids from Ohio to the Gulf Coast are progressing.

Mobile market brings local fruits, veggies to your door

Published Jul. 23, 2014

On a Monday in mid-July, Adam Sturm is manning the register at his grocery store. He's got local summer squash, some deep hued organic eggplant and a bevy of colorful heirloom tomatoes. And inside, Sturm has grits, eggs and more. Sturm's truck houses Adam's Mobile Market, his 5-month old local food venture. The market carries fresh local products from six local farms.

Custom farm work rates rising in Ohio

Published Jul. 23, 2014

The rates custom farm workers are paid in Ohio are rising, according to a new statewide survey of Ohio growers, farm workers and machinery operators completed by agricultural economists from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.

OFB expert: Beware of liabilities when purchasing a gas well

Published Jul. 25, 2014

COLUMBUS — Landowners who take ownership of gas wells on their property need to make sure the benefits outweigh the financial liabilities, according to Ohio Farm Bureau (OBF) Federation Director of Energy Policy Dale Arnold.

What’s happening with hops in Ohio

Published Jul. 25, 2014

WOOSTER, Ohio — In terms of both production and economic opportunity, hops growing is hot in Ohio. However, crop threats like spider mites and outbreaks of diseases like downy mildew in some areas have both growers and researchers perplexed.

USDA and CoBank create rural infrastructure fund

Published Jul. 25, 2014

WASHINGTON, July 24, 2014 -- USDA and CoBank announced today a partnership to create a $10 billion fund to improve rural infrastructure, an investment Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack called both a “historic investment” and a “great first effort.”

AFBF's Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge highlights entrepreneurship

Published Jul. 25, 2014

WASHINGTON — American Farm Bureau Federation together with Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business Global Social Enterprise Initiative and the Georgetown Entrepreneurship Initiative’s StartupHoyas today announced the Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge. Individuals will be able to showcase ideas and business innovations being cultivated in rural regions of the United States.

Can You Trust That Organic Label On Imported Food?

Published Jul. 25, 2014

Maybe you've wondered, while looking at the price tag on some organic produce, whether that label is telling the truth. Peter Laufer, a writer and professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, doesn't just wonder. He's an outright skeptic, especially because the organic label seems to him like a license to raise prices.

U.S. grain farmers resort to giant storage bags to avoid cheap sales

Published Jul. 25, 2014

(Reuters) - As U.S. farmers turn in record grain crops this autumn, many will have a powerful new tool - giant sausage-shaped storage bags - to help them avoid the lowest prices in years and gain more control over trade with giants such as Cargill Inc.

Woman forced to relocate flock of chickens

Published Jul. 25, 2014

After discovering how factory-farmed chickens are handled, Jenny Durbin decided to raise her own chickens. Now, the village of Silverton is threatening to take away her source of eggs and the family of birds to which she's become so close

Wheat harvest yields increase

Published Jul. 25, 2014

Farmers in the region aren’t planting as much wheat as in years past, but those who did enjoyed “a good harvest” this month with strong yields and no plant disease, reports Ed Lentz, agriculture/natural resources educator for Ohio State University Extension.