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Ty Higgins

I was born and raised on a dairy farm in Licking County. Using the “its who you know” and “seize an opportunity” mantras, I started my farm broadcasting career right out of high school at WRFD-AM, thanks to my uncle Scott Higgins introducing me to then Farm Director Joe Cornely.

From there my radio path took me to Columbus country music station WHOK-FM, where I was known as Tyler Jacobs for over 12 years. Eventually I ended up right where I started and where I am most comfortable, back in farm broadcasting – using my real name!

I became a member of The Ohio Ag Net team in 2010 and I am proud to share the great stories about Ohio Agriculture, one broadcast at a time.

I currently live in Delaware County, where I am raising one boy and one girl, with my wife Angela. When I am not coaching my son’s baseball team or rehearsing for my role in my daughter’s dance recital (pictures if you want them), I am grilling, golfing and doing whatever may be on my “honey-do” list at any given moment.

The Ty-rade – The crop tour was just Ducky

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

Last week I had the opportunity to be a part of the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour. This tour is 4 solid days of scouting corn and bean fields from Ohio to the Dakotas and I saw firsthand that it is as bad out there as you are hearing. I took plenty of pictures, did some interviews and shot some video to try to give you the best view possible from my vantage point. Here is a recap of my trip.

This was the longest I have been away from home since my kids were born. They always have a little bit of a hard time when I pack my bags, but we have found a way to narrow the distance when I am gone.

Every time I hit the road, I get a stuffed animal to take along for the ride. That toy goes everywhere I go and I take pictures of it in the stangest places and send them back home to my kids.… Continue reading

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The Ty-Rade – A picture is worth 50 bushels

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

Seeing is believing. Over the past two months I have travelled to many parts of Ohio and I, like many others, have seen crops that look alright and crops that look poor. It is no secret that a big part of the Midwest is suffering through the worst drought in many decades. I have seen images on the news and pictures that have been sent in to us at The Ohio Ag Net, I even took a few pictures myself when I visited Farm Science Review fields a few days ago.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

These four ears are from the same field. How in the world will crop tours be able to “guess” what will come out of America’s corn fields will a sample like this one?

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Here are two more ears from an FSR site.… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – Downhill both ways

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

I am by no means a “Zen master”. I have moments of calm and moments when what they call the Higgins Temper rears its ugly head. I have taken many a deep breath and have attempted to “chill-out”, as the kids call it, but being a monk is not in my future.

I do, however, believe in balance. I truly believe that everything happens for a reason and that if you do something good, something good happens to you in return. Yes, that works the other way too. Without sounding too much like a hippie, for every yen there is a yang.

Deep thoughts, aren’t they? That’s what I get for trying to clear my mind with the newest addition to my garage. Last week I bought bikes for my wife and I. Now that both of our kids can ride, training wheels-free, we wanted in on the action.… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – Drought over the years

I came across this picture via the Texas Corn Producers. At first I thought it was a bunch of cows (leave it to me), but then realized that it was a comparison of drought maps from years gone by. What it shows is staggering.

You can’t help but notice 1934. Imagine going through that. No doubt that the “Dust Bowl” was an extreme situation. Many initiatives were put in place in the Farm Bill back then that continue today.

It is now a fact that this summer is more drought-stricken than 1954 and this year’s conditions seem to make 1988 look like a walk in the park from the national perspective.

Will your grocery bill go up? Yes.

Will gas prices rise? Yes.

Will some question ethanol’s role in gobbling up the nation’s corn crop? Yes.

Will there be enough funding to pay out crop insurance? Not sure.

Will our government get a new Farm Bill passed before the law reverts back to the 1949 agreement?… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – The Kitchen Table

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

Most guys will tell you that the most important piece of furniture in the house is their huge flat-screen TV or the La-Z-Boy recliner they kick back in to watch that TV. For me, there is no more valuable part of a house than the kitchen table.

Your first thought is that I love to eat, right? Although that is true, it isn’t the main reason for my decision but it’s a good place to start.

Every time I sit with my family around my kitchen table for dinner I learn a little bit more about my kids and my wife. The conversation can go from what they learned in school that particular day, to how they got that scrape on their knee after falling off a bike, to a funny conversation with a friend over the phone. No matter what the topic, that time around the table can reestablish families after a long day away from one another and moreover, bring them closer together.… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – Exhibit "A": This Summer

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

In the case of the 2012 Farm Bill vs. Congress, your Honor, I would like to put into evidence, this summer, as Exhibit “A”.

There are two things that aren’t doing quite what they are supposed to this season, crops and Congress. Of course, one has made the decision to do absolutely nothing for a good part of the year. The other is the fault of no one, yet some may be punished.

If there was ever a year that a Farm Bill is needed, it may very well be 2012. The rain has been a bit of a tease and the Sun has left little to the imagination, showing all it has and then some with temperatures well into the 90’s and even triple-digits a time or two.

This combination has left acres and acres of America’s heartland scorched and dare I say, looking pathetic.… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – Exhibit “A”: This Summer

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

In the case of the 2012 Farm Bill vs. Congress, your Honor, I would like to put into evidence, this summer, as Exhibit “A”.

There are two things that aren’t doing quite what they are supposed to this season, crops and Congress. Of course, one has made the decision to do absolutely nothing for a good part of the year. The other is the fault of no one, yet some may be punished.

If there was ever a year that a Farm Bill is needed, it may very well be 2012. The rain has been a bit of a tease and the Sun has left little to the imagination, showing all it has and then some with temperatures well into the 90’s and even triple-digits a time or two.

This combination has left acres and acres of America’s heartland scorched and dare I say, looking pathetic.… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – I hope it rains on your parade

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

This may be the meanest thing I have ever said, but I hope it rains on your parade this 4th of July. I’m not asking for a gully washer until after the parade is over, but if you walk in the parade or sit along the road to watch it; I hope you will need every square inch of that umbrella.

I’m not usually this cruel, but neither is Mother Nature.

Some farmers in Ohio haven’t seen more than a quarter of an inch of rain in almost two months.

As the crops wither down the markets are as high as the rockets’ red glare. What looks like a relatively good pineapple field is a farmer’s hope
for a prosperous year being drained like water that he’s wishing for.

This is a critical time for Ohio’s farmers and the fields they planted in the spring.… Continue reading

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The Ty-rade – Pickin’ on Popcorn

By Ty Higgins

I should NEVER watch the news right before bed. I get so upset at some of the ignorance blaring though the TV that I can’t settle down. I start foaming at the mouth and just blurt out my thoughts to a yawning audience. It drives my wife crazy. The last time this happened she yelled back “Just go write a blog about it and let me sleep!”

So that is what I am doing. Welcome to the initial entry of The Ty-rade. I won’t always be angered when I sit down and share my thoughts. Sometimes the stories will be insightful, sometimes they will be spiteful and hopefully the majority of the time, like this one, they will take on both characteristics.

News anchor Erin Burnett hosts a show on CNN titled “Out Front”. Her attempt is to be a bit edgy and to find the stories that she thinks are examples of the government and large industries “putting one over” on the American people.… Continue reading

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Rodeo clowns and caviar

By Ty Higgins

All in all, I am pretty comfortable in my own skin. With that said, I try as hard as I can to not make a fool of myself whenever possible. Every once in a while, however, the situations that I find myself in leave me no choice.

One of those situations happened earlier this week when I headed to Chicago for the BASF Ag Solutions Media Summit. I would be doing BASF an injustice if I didn’t mention how spectacular and enlightening the event was. The focus was sustainability and you can read more about the summit and listen to my interviews here.

I would be doing you an injustice if I didn’t write about the reason that I felt like a rodeo clown at a caviar convention.

The event was held at The Trump Tower Hotel, my room was there as well. A one-night stay is about the equivalent of a week’s pay for me and if it weren’t for the summit, I would have never stepped foot through the gold-trimmed revolving door.… Continue reading

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Not quite The Memorial

By Ty Higgins

Golf is one of my true passions. I’m not quite sure why because I’m not all that good.

I think it is the idea of being outside on the plush fairway (sometimes), the cell phone muted and my only worry being what iron to use from 150 yards out with a light breeze behind you.

My love for the sport makes this week a special one for me every year as Columbus and its golf hero hosts the World’s best for The Memorial Tournament. Sure the curse of Leatherlips can cause things to get a little soggy at Muirfield Village, but seeing Mickleson and Woods pass by as they walk the course is always a rush for this golf geek.

I have played some really majestic golf courses in my life. I have had to hit over the Atlantic to an island green and have played on tracks that feature more sand than grass.… Continue reading

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Maybe it should be spelled Pharming

A few weeks ago, a co-worker and I were talking about all of the trying challenges that come with farming. As we were chatting we noticed that there were many words (some that will not be used in this post) that started with the letter P. We laughed it off at first and then I got an email from her later in the day that proved our theory even more. So, without further adieu, here is our list so far. Add to it if you would like and Happy Pharming!

Patience

Planting

Produce

Peeved

Praying

Pour

Pounce

Packing

Punishing

Prod

Procrastination

Pace

Pressure

Pleasure

Poop

Pale

Pail

Parcel

Planters

Parked

Pest

Phosphorous

Pigweed

Precipitation

Politics (especially this year)… Continue reading

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Taking the “Subway” approach to farming

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

What is it about heading to your favorite restaurant with your family for a bite to eat? For some, it is the atmosphere, for others it is the food and for many it is the fact that their kitchen can stay spic and span for more than an hour or two. No matter what the reasoning, eating out is time that my family and I enjoy on occasion.

How much do you know about your favorite eatery? Do you ever think about what goes on behind the swinging doors that your waitress pops in and out of with full and empty trays?

I am not trying to put negative thoughts in your head about where you eat, although you might have already done thate yourself. It is a good thing that we trust other people enough to let them prepare food for us. It says a lot about our society, if you ask me.… Continue reading

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Sharing the debt

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

Look at everything happening in D.C. lately. Almost every day there is a bill sent to the House or Senate floors that go absolutely no further by design. All of these bills are built to make the other party look pitiful when they fail and sway the voters one way or another during a vicious election year.

There is bickering about healthcare, social security, food stamps and most important to the ag industry, farm programs.

I was disappointed to find out that the Buffett rule was not about getting a plate and making numerous trips to the food line. Adding one “t” can ruin everything for a guy.

That rule and all of the squabbling in Washington got me thinking that instead of thinking of “sharing the wealth” as an economic recovery tactic, maybe we should consider it more of “sharing the debt”.

Agriculture has already tried to do this by volunteering to delete over $20 billion dollars from farm programs late last year during the Super Committee process.… Continue reading

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A farmer’s silent partner

By Ty Higgins, Ohio Ag Net

 

He may look all alone

In the middle of his field

All he sees is all he owns

Where a silent partnership is sealed.

 

He’s not talking to himself

And he’s not praying to The Devine.

It’s a conversation with the land

That has his future on the line.

 

It’s a mutual agreement

With everything in view,

“Land, you take care of me

And I’ll take care of you”

 

Then, a handshake with the soil

He’s knows no other way.

A relationship he will never foil

For to him, every day is Earth Day.… Continue reading

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Who's Keeping Score?

If you’ve read enough of my blogs, you know that my favorite thing to do is to be a Dad. There is nothing else like it. I made a promise to myself when my daughter Paige was born almost 8 years ago to never look back and wonder where the time went. To me, that is a deterrent to what is happening now and what is happening now is much more fun to me.

I was never really good at sports. I was born with an incomplete left hip and I have always had a hitch in my giddy-up, if you will. The problem is I love sports and I love competition. I would live my sport-life vicariously through my brother, who was (I would say is but he is in his 30’s as well) a great basketball player. When he played basketball my athletic heart was racing as I cheered him on.… Continue reading

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Who’s Keeping Score?

If you’ve read enough of my blogs, you know that my favorite thing to do is to be a Dad. There is nothing else like it. I made a promise to myself when my daughter Paige was born almost 8 years ago to never look back and wonder where the time went. To me, that is a deterrent to what is happening now and what is happening now is much more fun to me.

I was never really good at sports. I was born with an incomplete left hip and I have always had a hitch in my giddy-up, if you will. The problem is I love sports and I love competition. I would live my sport-life vicariously through my brother, who was (I would say is but he is in his 30’s as well) a great basketball player. When he played basketball my athletic heart was racing as I cheered him on.… Continue reading

Read More »

Why it's ethical to eat meat

I happened upon a New York Times article that kicked off a “contest” to make the strongest possible case for this most basic of daily practices…consuming meat.

Here is just some of the article.

Ethically speaking, vegetables get all the glory. In recent years, vegetarians — and to an even greater degree vegans, their hard-core inner circle — have dominated the discussion about the ethics of eating. From the philosopher Peter Singer, whose 1975 volume “Animal Liberation” galvanized an international movement, to the novelist Jonathan Safran Foer, who wrote the 2009 best seller “Eating Animals,” those who forswear meat have made the case that what we eat is a crucial ethical decision. To be just, they say, we must put down our cheeseburgers and join their ranks.

In response, those who love meat have had surprisingly little to say. They say, of course, that, well, they love meat or that meat is deeply ingrained in our habit or culture or cuisine or that it’s nutritious or that it’s just part of the natural order.Continue reading

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Why it’s ethical to eat meat

I happened upon a New York Times article that kicked off a “contest” to make the strongest possible case for this most basic of daily practices…consuming meat.

Here is just some of the article.

Ethically speaking, vegetables get all the glory. In recent years, vegetarians — and to an even greater degree vegans, their hard-core inner circle — have dominated the discussion about the ethics of eating. From the philosopher Peter Singer, whose 1975 volume “Animal Liberation” galvanized an international movement, to the novelist Jonathan Safran Foer, who wrote the 2009 best seller “Eating Animals,” those who forswear meat have made the case that what we eat is a crucial ethical decision. To be just, they say, we must put down our cheeseburgers and join their ranks.

In response, those who love meat have had surprisingly little to say. They say, of course, that, well, they love meat or that meat is deeply ingrained in our habit or culture or cuisine or that it’s nutritious or that it’s just part of the natural order.Continue reading

Read More »