Buckeye Farm News
Agriculture education students at River View High School in Coshocton County have a unique opportunity to learn how to produce and market a quality product thanks in part to a partnership with a county Farm Bureau.
“Pasture to Plate” is a program developed under the guidance of the Walhonding Valley Farmers, River View FFA and Robert C. Stout, DVM. Currently 21 students are caring for 17 beef calves. Students are responsible for feeding, daily animal checks, record keeping and marketing.
Getting this program up and running took extra funds and assistance from others within the community, and that’s where Coshocton County Farm Bureau got involved. Through a request from Stout, the county Farm Bureau board of trustees decided to loan the program money to help cover start-up costs. The students will pay back the entire loan, and they must report to the county Farm Bureau board on the progress of the program.
“This was definitely an investment worth taking,” said Susan Brinker, Farm Bureau organization director. “These young people are gaining experience that will benefit them in the future, it is helping them to become leaders in this business, plus it allows us to share Farm Bureau’s message with them.”
According to Stout, the students are required to abide by specific rules including following Beef Quality Assurance policies, sharing the work load in raising the calves and taking charge of marketing the meat to local consumers.
“Just recently we’ve had a local grocer become a partner in the program,” Stout said.
“The students will now be able to market the beef under their brand through this market.”Jim Rich, River View FFA advisor, said the program turns theory into practice with hands-on experience.
“The students/FFA members learn the importance of producing a safe quality product for the consumer and gain valuable economic insight into the business of agriculture,” he said.