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‘A great way to scout your fields’: Scans done by drones can help farmers identify problems

It’s hard to say if any of the farmers who saw drone demonstrations Wednesday at Empire Farm Days will ever buy one. However, judging by the reactions of those who stopped by the CNY Drone Works area, they were fascinated with the technology. “I had some crop damage from wind once in the middle of a field and never knew... more

Empire Farm Days underway in Seneca Falls

In 1931, Empire State Potato Growers Association developed Empire Farm Days to bring farmers the newest equipment, info & techniques. On Tuesday, the event kicks off for the 85th year at the Rodman Lott Farm in Seneca Falls where Empire Farm Days has been hosted since 1988, with 300 acres of exhibits, demos and activities. Official Event Program (.pdf) Empire... more

Tariffs hit home in Finger Lakes

Farmers are battling financial losses. Home builders and home buyers — all are feeling the effect of tariffs. Millions of dollars are planned for school capital projects, but costs may be rising. This summer, with prime time for big projects at schools across the Rochester and Finger Lakes area taking place, a price jump in aluminum and steel is forcing... more

Sen. Helming aims to ‘level’ playing field for hops farmers

Senator Pam Helming today announced that the New York State Senate passed a bill that she sponsors to include hop yards in the definition of agricultural land. The legislation (S.8841) would give hops farmers the same opportunities as orchard and vineyard owners to apply for agricultural tax exemptions. This measure will support the continued growth of New York’s hops industry... more

Legislation aims to move farm vehicles faster

Senator Pam Helming announced that the New York State Senate passed a bill that she sponsored to increase the speed at which a slow moving vehicle may travel on roadways. This legislation (S.6746) would require a slow moving vehicle emblem to be displayed on all farm machinery, whether self-propelled or towed, but would allow farmers to drive their vehicles at... more

Poop to power is turning waste to want in FLX

Cornell University’s College of Veterinary Medicine Teaching Dairy Barn — home to 200 cows — has installed a state-of-the-art system that separates manure from sand bedding material, providing clean bedding for the cows and creating muck perfect for making electricity and heat. Dairies also use sawdust, wood chips or straw as bedding material, but sand reduces potential bacterial growth while... more

Cayuga County dairy serves as model for manure management

There are more than 1,200 cows on Tim and Ronda Fessenden’s dairy farm. As one might imagine, those cows produce quite a lot of manure. But what happens to it all? To answer the question, the Fessendens hosted a a tour of their King Ferry farm to demonstrate the manure cycle. The Fessenden’s hosted the tour with the help of... more

Canadian tariffs impose crippling stress on local farmers

Falling milk prices over the past four years have put crippling stress on local dairy farmers, putting many out of business. And the brewing trade war with Canada has many farmers concerned it could get worse. “The impact here is pretty simple, our net income right now is zero,” Hal Adams, Black Brook Farms says. A few months back, News10NBC... more

Mr. Kriese’s Agricultural opus in Yates County

Penn Yan Academy Agriculture teacher John Kriese knows how to grow things, how to build things, and how to fix things. His ability to mentor, support, and guide young people, looking past weaknesses to help students find a direction for their future brought a large and appreciative crowd out for the 87th Penn Yan FFA Chapter Banquet at Penn Yan... more

DEC ‘pursuing’ Owasco dairy farm for clean water violations

An Owasco dairy farm previously cited for worker housing conditions is also being investigated by the state for violating clean water regulations. In February, four adults and five children moved out of the workers’ house at Melrose Farm after a town of Owasco cease-and-desist order was issued to the farm’s owner, Joe Tidd, due to unsafe conditions at the living... more

Dairy Farms in Crisis Part III: A threat to our way of life

While many readers may think the survival of small, family-owned dairy farms is not important to their way of life, that would be short-sighted. Whatever your own occupation and source of income may be, the tax base and productive economy of Yates County is dominated by agriculture; and a large portion of that is in dairy farms or in service... more

Milo supports farmland protection

At last month’s Milo Town Board meeting, the members agreed to sign a letter of support for Robert Henderson’s application for the New York State Farmland Implementation Program. Elizabeth Newbold, formerly of Cornell Cooperative Extension and now with the University of Vermont (but who still assists in these applications) says Henderson applied in the past for the Farmland Protection Program,... more

Canandaigua Farmers Market opens Saturday for season

It’s not a billboard and it’s not an advertisement. But the hope is that a new mural that soon will brighten the inside of the pavilion at the Canandaigua Farmers Market, which opens for its 17th season at 8:30 a.m. Saturday, will help to build awareness of the market on Mill Street and the goods offered by its vendors. Artist... more

Giants farms ‘milking’ the system in Yates

A common scene in Yates County — the bucolic setting of a vibrant green pasture dotted by dairy cattle contentedly grazing after their morning milking — is being threatened, and along with it, the survival of the sustainable family dairy farm. Why? Because decades of changes in calculating milk prices are squeezing small producers out of the picture. The price... more

Empire Farm Days names new management team

Last December, Melanie Wickham of Stanley announced her resignation as executive director of the Empire State Potato Growers Association and as director of the association’s popular Empire Farm Days after 32 years. At the time, Karl Hofmann, president of the potato growers association, said it would take two people to fill Wickham’s roles. Hofmann was off by one. It was... more

FARMING IN THE FINGER LAKES: A great future for beef in the Finger Lakes

“Beef production in the Finger Lakes is on the rise, and the future appears to be very promising and poised for growth,” said John Kriese, current president of the New York Beef Producers Association. Kriese, a third-generation beef cattle producer, is the owner of Spring Pond Farm and co-owner of Finger Lakes Cattle Co. in Branchport as well as Penn... more

Lyons man killed in farm accident

Wayne County Sheriff Barry Virts says his office investigated a fatal agricultural accident in the Town of Lyons on Wednesday around 3 p.m. Patrol units along with the Lyons Fire and Rescue and Lyons Town Ambulance were dispatched to 876 Sohn Alloway Road for an off-road accident involving a bulldozer. Upon arrival it was discovered that Richard A. Lyon, 84... more

Massive fire at Aurora Ridge Dairy under investigation

Firefighters were called to the scene of a barn fire in the Poplar Ridge Fire District around 9:20 p.m. First responders say there were approximately 300 calves inside the barn, and that there was an active structure fire confirmed when crews arrived. Barn fire in a calf barn in Ledyard. pic.twitter.com/jOiuHHz822 — Kevin Rivoli (@KevinRivoli) May 1, 2018 Poplar Ridge,... more
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