Agriculture

Mark Kurlansky is the New York Times bestselling author of "Havana," "Cod," "Salt," "Paper," "The Basque History of the World," "1968," and "The Big Oyster," among other titles. He has received the Dayton Literary Peace Prize, Bon Appetit's Food Writer of the Year Award, the James Beard Award, and the Glenfiddich Award.

Profoundly intertwined with human civilization, milk has a compelling and a surprisingly global story to tell, and historian Mark Kurlansky is the perfect person to tell it. Tracing the liquid's diverse history from antiquity to the present, he details its curious and crucial role in cultural evolution, religion, nutrition, politics, and economics.

a piglet
Hancock Shaker Village Facebook page

It may not feel like spring has sprung – but it is nearly time for a major regional spring event: Baby Animals at Hancock Shaker Village in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.

On April 14, Hancock Shaker Village will begin welcoming visitors to visit their newly restored silos, Dairy Ell, and Round Stone Barn – which will be full of lambs, piglets, calves, chicks, and kids through May 6.

We are joined by Hancock Shaker Village’s Director of Facilities and Farm Billy Mangiardi and Director of Education Cindy Dickinson.

bottles of syrup
Cindy Schultz / timesunion.com

The Upper Hudson Maple Producers Association’s 2018 Maple Open House Weekends are this weekend and next. Events include demonstrations, samples, and free tours of area sugarhouses.

Maple Weekends happens at locations all across New York State. Here to tell us more are marketing manager for the Upper Hudson Maple Producers Association Mary Jeanne Packer – she lives on Mapleland Farms in Washington County.

We are also joined by Vernon “DJ” Duesler IV. DJ is a 4th generation maple syrup farmer from Ephratah in Fulton County. DJ and his dad Vern operate Mud Road Sugarhouse.

The New York Farm Bureau has released its national agricultural priorities for 2018.  The Farm Bill is key along with trade and regulatory reform.

dairy cows
WAMC

New York U.S. Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is promoting legislation that would return to dairy farmers premiums paid into a program intended to be a safety net when milk prices to producers plummet.  The Democrat says farmers have never benefited even though milk prices have been dropping since the program was implemented.

New York Farm Bureau logo
New York Farm Bureau

The New York Farm Bureau has announced its legislative priorities for the state legislative session that runs through June.  During a conference call, the farm advocacy group explained its focus is on addressing issues surrounding economic and income losses.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Republican Congressman John Faso of New York's 19th District will be holding listening sessions on the proposed 2018 Farm Bill this week.

It is the 27th Anniversary of the Agricultural Stewardship Association and on October 7th, ASA will present their 16th Annual Landscapes for Landsake Art Sale & Exhibition.

The event is a fundraiser to support local farmland conservation, the show features thirty-one artists whose work is inspired by the region's working landscapes. It takes place in the historic barn at Maple Ridge in the hamlet of Coila, just west of the Village of Cambridge.

farm tractor in field
WAMC/Pat Bradley

The University of Vermont and several groups are investigating who farms in Vermont and plan to update the image of the Vermont farmer.

American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall
American Farm Bureau Federation

The Vermont Farm Bureau will host two national agricultural leaders in the next few weeks.

farm tractor in field
WAMC/Pat Bradley

A recently released study by a University of Vermont researcher has found that the cost of health care and insurance is a risk to farm viability.

Flooded corn
Vermont Agency of Agriculture

The Vermont Agency of Agriculture is urging the state's farmers to document any losses they might have suffered due to a string of heavy rains and flash floods.

The last remaining farm within Saratoga Springs city limits is under new management by a team that will use the property as a center for agriculture and education. 

Pitney Meadows Community Farm is ready for summer with Community Gardens, and local farm and food training and education. They’ll be a year-round farm-hub that shares the bounty of upstate New York agriculture and community. The grounds will also provide nature trails and host community events.

Barbara Glaser and Natalie Walsh join us now to tell us more.

Barbara is a leader in open-space preservation in Saratoga Springs since the 1980s, Barbara Glaser has played a key role in the establishment of Pitney Meadows Community Farm. Natalie is the director of the new Pitney Meadows Community Gardens.

Pixabay/Public Domain

Following dry and drought conditions last summer, Northeast farmers are facing the opposite challenge this growing season: a rainy, cool spring that has delayed the planting of corn and other crops and the first cutting of hay for livestock feed.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Note 5/4/2017: An earlier version of this story referred to the Pitney Meadows Community Farm as the Pitney Meadows Community Foundation. The original audio of this story remains posted.

The last remaining farm within Saratoga Springs city limits is under new management by a team that wants to use the property as a center for agriculture and education. As WAMC’s Southern Adirondack Bureau Chief Lucas Willard reports, a group of local students is making recommendations for how to move forward.

4/27/17 Panel

Apr 27, 2017

 

       The Roundtable Panel: a daily open discussion of issues in the news and beyond.

Today's panelists are WAMC’s Alan Chartock, Director of the Journalism Program at the University at Albany Rosemary Armao, and special guest Tom Vilsack, former U.S. Secretary of Agriculture under President Obama.

For the final portion of The Panel, Director of Albany Law’s Government Law Center, Andrew Ayers joins us to talk about the four distinguished graduates will be honored at the 2017 Alumni in Government Awards.

In 2005, beekeepers in the United States began observing a mysterious and disturbing phenomenon: once-healthy colonies of bees were suddenly collapsing, leaving behind empty hives full of honey and pollen. 

Vanishing Bees takes us inside the debates over widespread honeybee deaths, introducing the various groups with a stake in solving the mystery of Colony Collapse Disorder (CCD), including beekeepers, entomologists, growers, agrichemical companies, and government regulators. Drawing from extensive interviews and first-hand observations, Sainath Suryanarayanan and Daniel Lee Kleinman examine how members of each group have acquired, disseminated, and evaluated knowledge about CCD.

Leaders of the New York Farm Bureau are in Washington this week for the American Farm Bureau Federation’s Advocacy Conference and to meet with the state congressional delegation.  New York’s largest agricultural lobbying organization has a number of priority issues, and it outlined the top three on a conference call with reporters this morning.

New York Farm Bureau logo
New York Farm Bureau

Officials from the New York Farm Bureau discussed the group’s top state legislative priorities and its response to the governor’s executive budget during a conference call this morning.

Sonny Perdue 2007 file photo
Public Domain

President-elect Donald Trump on Thursday announced the last of his cabinet nominees.  Former Georgia Governor Sonny Perdue has been chosen to lead the Agriculture Department.  Farm advocates in our region say it’s a good choice and are hopeful he will be a strong advocate on key agricultural issues.

David Fisher
New York Farm Bureau

The New York Farm Bureau has a new leader.  During the organization’s annual meeting last week, delegates from across the state elected St. Lawrence County dairy farmer David Fisher president of the farmer-member lobbying and trade group.  Fisher says he accepted the leadership role because he wants to help agriculture across the entire state.

Saratoga PLAN

Supporters of the long-awaited preservation of a community farm in Saratoga Springs cheered Tuesday night after the city approved a conservation easement to protect the Pitney Farm for years to come.

Picture of a judge's gavel
WikiMedia Commons

A judge has allowed the New York Farm Bureau to intervene in a lawsuit that could dramatically affect farm wages in the state.

Saratoga PLAN

Pitney Farm is the last remaining operating farm within the Saratoga Springs city limits.

Partners have been working to purchase and preserve the family farm for the past several months. Earlier this year, the organization Saratoga PLAN backed out of its plans to purchase the property.

Lucas Willard / WAMC

Cornell Cooperative Extension Saratoga County, working with the Milton Grange, is hosting an event Saturday that aims introduce the basics of homesteading to kids and adults.

In her new book: Modified: GMOs and the Threat to Our Food, Our Land, Our Future, journalist Caitlin Shetterly has turned her own personal journey into an exploration of how GMOs may be affecting not only our health but our agricultural future as well.

Shetterly begins with her own family ordeal: her one-year old son would have bedtime episode where he would cry incessantly, stop breathing, and turn blue, and his body was covered with eczema. A forward-thinking pediatrician added corn to the list of foods to cut out of the baby’s diet to check for allergens, and his health problems all but disappeared. Then Shetterly herself began to suffer.

Shetterly decided to research all this which took her on a road trip through Nebraska and into Iowa, where she witnessed firsthand the changing face of agricultural America. 

farm produce
US Department of Agriculture

Agricultural producers from across New York travel to Washington each year to participate in the annual New York Farm Day.   Senator Kirsten Gillibrand is hosting the 15th annual event this evening on Capitol Hill.

Jim Levulis / WAMC

Federal and state agricultural officials met in Connecticut Wednesday to discuss human and animal health concerns as agritourism grows.

Dutchess County Exec To Hold Ag Forum At The Fair

Aug 24, 2016
Dutchess County Fair

The Dutchess County executive will host the second annual agriculture forum at the Dutchess County Fair.

farm tractor in field
WAMC/Pat Bradley

The Vermont Department of Agriculture has announced a series of public hearings on the final draft of new agricultural rules designed to protect water quality.

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