2020 County Fair Cancellations
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State, Ohio Fresh Eggs settle violations and contempt charges

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine, the Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) and Ohio Environmental Protection Agency (Ohio EPA) announced that the State of Ohio has entered into a proposed consent order with Ohio Fresh Eggs, LLC (OFE) of 11212 Croton Road in Croton, Ohio.

The consent order was lodged on April 6, 2011, with the Licking County Common Pleas Court that resolves 71 allegations of violations of ODA and Ohio EPA laws, regulations and permits for OFE’s facilities in Licking, Hardin and Wyandot counties issued by each Agency.

The charges in contempt include failure to comply with required barn renovation schedules and were based on the 2001 Buckeye Egg Farm consent order in Licking County, which was applicable to OFE as the entity that bought the former Buckeye Egg Farm in 2003.

The new proposed consent order will replace the Buckeye Egg Farm consent order and resolves both the complaint and charges in contempt.… Continue reading

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Volunteers needed for milk study

More people are choosing to drink raw milk these days, and Ohio State University researchers are hoping to find out why.

They are looking for people who live on farms who drink either raw or pasteurized milk to take part in a study. Volunteers will be asked to meet with researchers to complete a written survey, and take part in a 1.5-hour-long focus group session. They will be paid $25 for their time and trouble.

“We truly do not know very much about how farmers make the choice to drink raw or pasteurized milk — there’s just nothing in the literature,” said Lydia Medeiros, a scientist with the university’s Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center and Ohio State University Extension, and a professor of human nutrition in the College of Education and Human Ecology. The study of farm families is part of a broader project on raw milk consumption in Ohio.… Continue reading

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Care Board votes to put “turn around” language back in veal standards

By Kyle Sharp

In February, more than 30 Ohio veal farmers representing roughly half the veal production in the state presented a petition to the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board (OLCSB) stating they “do not anticipate continuing to raise veal in the State of Ohio” after 2017, if the drafted veal regulations at that time were made final. As a result, the Board voted March 1 to amend its proposed veal production standards by removing a requirement for veal calves to be able to turn around in their individual pens during their first 10 weeks of age after Dec. 31, 2017.

At the April 5 OLCSB meeting, more than 100 animal activists, many of them bused by the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) from Cleveland and Cincinnati, came to the meeting wearing shirts that read “Let Them Turn Around” and featured an image of veal calves. They called for the Board to overturn the March 1 amendment and restate the requirement for veal calves to be able to turn around.… Continue reading

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Research helps producers use more distillers grains, reduce feed costs

Almost a third of the 146 million bushels of Ohio-grown corn used by the state’s growing ethanol industry ends up in a byproduct called distillers grains, which can be used as a cheaper feed alternative for cattle, sheep and swine.

In the past animal nutritional requirements and high fat, nitrogen and sulfur content of distiller’s grains (DGS) have limited the use of the byproduct to 25% of cattle diets. The restriction has led to a reduction in potential savings for producers as well as fewer employment opportunities and profits for ethanol plants. But, Ohio State University researchers are working to change that.

“Both the biofuels and livestock industries are jeopardized unless discoveries are made to allow increased use of DGS in animal rations as a viable and cost-effective substitute for corn grain,” said Steve Loerch, an animal scientist with Ohio State University’s Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) in Wooster.… Continue reading

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NCBA: 101 members of Congress call for EPA to back off dust

The Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Lisa Jackson received a letter from 101 members of the U.S. House of Representatives expressing concerns about EPA’s potential revision to the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for Coarse Particulate Matter, more commonly known as dust. Led by Congresswoman Kristi Noem (R-S.D.) and Congressman Stephen Fincher (R-Tenn.), the policymakers collectively emphasized the devastating impact farmers, ranchers and all of rural America would feel if the EPA moves forward with regulating dust at unprecedented levels.

“This bipartisan effort to protect farmers, ranchers and all of rural America from a burdensome, unnecessary and scientifically unfounded regulation is reassuring. We firmly stand behind and strongly support this effort to relieve farm and ranch families from the massive heap of regulations coming out of the EPA,” said Colin Woodall, vice president of government affairs for the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association. “We hope Administrator Jackson and all of the officials at EPA are listening to the continuous calls from elected leaders to use science and commonsense when proposing or even considering regulations.… Continue reading

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Hog prices nearing their peak

The highest hog prices on record will soon be arriving, said a Purdue University Extension economist.

“These may be the highest hog prices for the next several years as well, especially if corn and soybean shortages can be reduced somewhat this summer with favorable growing conditions. On the other hand, if 2011 turns out to be a short crop production year, then the previous statement will be invalid as surging feed prices will force added liquidation of the hog herd this fall. But you already knew how much was riding on upcoming crops,” said Chris Hurt.

USDA’s March Hogs and Pigs report implied that pork supplies will be somewhat higher this year. However, demand factors are more important to hog prices now than supply. Those demand factors include the continued strong growth in export demand, the continued economic recovery in the U.S., and inflation in commodities, he said.

The report indicated that the market herd was up nearly 1%, primarily as a result of a somewhat larger-than-expected winter pig crop, he said.… Continue reading

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Forages and nutrient management

By Bob Hendershot, State Grassland Conservationist, USDA-NRCS-Ohio

Forages can help in managing nutrients from manure applications.

Harvested forages can be used effectively to remove excess nutrients from crop fields and reduce water pollution potential. Harvested forages are very marketable, and should be considered as a way to transfer nutrients off of farms with excess nutrient levels. Forages also are excellent in improving soil conditions, reducing soil erosion and runoff that contributes to water quality concerns.

Forages can be used to draw down soil test phosphorus levels in fields with excessive soil test levels. Typically,

forages will remove 13 to 15 pounds of P2O5 per ton of harvested forage. Plants harvested earlier in their growth stage will have a higher concentration of phosphorus, but a lower yield per acre. Different forages remove different

amounts of phosphorus. Oklahoma research shows orchardgrass removing 50% more P2O5 than the same yield of

alfalfa, ryegrass or tall fescue; twice as much as red clover and three times more than sorghum-sudangrass or pearl millet.… Continue reading

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Ohio hog inventory down 2%, U.S. up 1%

Ohio hog producers had 1.99 million hogs on hand March 1, 2011, down 2% from last quarter and from a year ago, according to the March 25 Hogs and Pigs Report from the USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service. The number of market hogs, at 1,820,000 head, was down 2% from last quarter and from last year. Breeding stock, at 170,000 head, was unchanged from last quarter and from last year.

The pig crop during the December-February 2011 quarter numbered 837,000 head, unchanged from last quarter but 1% above last year. The number of sows farrowed during the December-February 2011 quarter, at 89,000, was unchanged from last quarter and from last year. Pigs saved per litter averaged 9.4, unchanged from last quarter but up 1% from last year.

Ohio producers intend to farrow 85,000 sows during the March-May 2011quarter, 4,000 head below a year earlier. Farrowing intentions for the summer quarter, June-August 2011, is 88,000 sows, 3,000 head below the same quarter of 2010.… Continue reading

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OSU cheese-making workshop

Dairy producers looking to expand their operations with farmstead cheese businesses can learn how at an Ohio State University cheese-making workshop.

“Hands-On Basic Cheese Making — Enhancing Dairy Profitability with Cheese” will take place April 27-29 at the Grindstone Creek Lodge at 4-H Camp Whitewood, 7983 S. Wiswell Rd., Windsor. Classes will run 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. each day.

This three-day class is designed for people who have never made cheese and those who want to improve their skills in order to enter the cheese business. Peter Dixon, one of the nation’s premier cheese-making instructors and operator of the Center for Farmstead Milk Processing in Vermont, will teach the course.

Workshop topics include milk quality, ingredients used in cheese making, cheese-making processes and techniques and tips for establishing a cheese-making business. Participants will have opportunities to make a number of different cheeses.

Registration is $550 per person and includes course tuition, resource materials, all workshop supplies, lunches and refreshments.… Continue reading

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New Ohio State Fair Commercial Pen of 5 Market Lamb Show

There will be a new class for the Ohio State Fair, a Commercial Pen of 5 Market Lamb Show.

Class Purpose:

  • Increase producer’s knowledge of carcass merit of the lambs they are producing
  • Provide carcass data to producers to aid in sire evaluations
  • Promote the high quality product being produced by the Ohio Lamb Industry
  • Expand the number of lambs available for the Ohio State Fair Lamb Sale to support the needs of the Kroger Company
  • Provide a greater opportunity for producers to participate in Ohio State Fair sheep activities

Rules for participation:

  • Open to any producer of market lambs – wethers and ewe lambs.
  • Entry Fee – $25 /pen of 5 – Maximum of 5 entries per family.
  • All entries must have a number one pelt (approx 90 days growth) with a fleece length of (one inch) 1” +/- ¼” (hair breeds will be allowed to show but no shearing will be allowed).
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Beef Expo highlights

More than 30,000 cattle industry enthusiasts attended the Ohio Beef Expo held March 18 – 20, 2011, at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus, Ohio. In its 24th year, the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association hosted the annual event.

The major attraction on Saturday, March 19 was seven breed sales. More than 325 lots were sold with an average price of $2,565 and a gross of $838,665. Individual breed sales results were as follows:

Lots             Sale            Gross                        Total                         Bull                               Female

Average                        Average                        Average

Angus              56             $132,275                  $2,364                         $2,481                         $2,289

Chianina        28             $58,650                   $2,094                         $2,395                         $2,018

Hereford         35             $82,185                    $2,348                         $2,458                         $2,243

Limousin        17             $32,450                    $1,838                         $1,765                         $1,834

Maine-Anjou 82             $252,025                 $2,972                         $3,407                         $2,467

Shorthorn       51             $139,130                  $2,450                         $3,365                         $2,135

Simmental      58             $141,850                 $2,445                         $2,360                         $2,541

TOTAL          327             $838,665            $2,565

ANGUS

Managed by: Al Gahler, Graytown, Ohio

Auctioneer: Ron Kreis, Adamsville, Ohio

Total Number of Lots: 56

Sale Gross: $132,275

Sale Average: $2,364

High Selling Bull: Rains Powerstroke PSNIFPN (Lot 6) sold for $5,000 to Frank Rihaly, Cadiz, OH

Consigned by Dale Rains, Mercer, PA

High Selling Female: SSC Blackbird (Lot 60) sold for $4,200 to James Fielding, Sunbury, OH

Consigned by Davin Sherman, Eaton, OH

CHIANINA

Managed by: Tyler Humphrey

Auctioneer: Ron Kreis

Total Number of Lots: 28

Sale Gross: $58,650

Sale Average: $ 2,094

High Selling Bull: LBG Top Gun 1CM (Lot 27) sold for $3,400

Consigned by Larry Garrett of Indiana

High Selling Female: BALD Penelope (Lot 1) sold for $3,600

Consigned by Jeremy Baldwin & Weber Show Cattle of Indiana

HEREFORD

Managed by: Lisa Keets, Berlin Heights, Ohio

Auctioneer: Dale Stith, Guston, Ky.… Continue reading

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Ohio Stair Fair Jr. Fair gets budget cut from state

Gov. John Kasich cut all of the Ohio State Fair’s Junior Fair funding from his proposed budget, generating concerns from fair supporters and Ohio’s agricultural community.. The cut of the $252,000 junior fair budget was used for the youth livestock, 4-H, FFA, band and choir programs and other youth activities. Fair manager Virgil Strickler said he will work with the Fair Board to maintain the vital youth programs at the Ohio State Fair. For a complete story from the Columbus Dispatch, click here Complete StoryContinue reading

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U.S. pork producers provide assistance to Japan

U.S. pork producers are partnering with the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) to provide pork for victims of the massive earthquake and tsunami that struck northeastern sections of Japan on March 11. Estimates are that more than a half million Japanese residents are without adequate food and shelter. Food shortages are expected to last into the summer months.

On behalf of U.S. pork producers and importers, the National Pork Board has allocated $100,000 from the Pork Checkoff to provide pork product and to help get it distributed to those in need in Japan, said Conley Nelson, a pork producer from Iowa and a member of the National Pork Board. USMEF, which represents the U.S. meat industry in Japan from its office in Tokyo, will work with U.S. pork packers and others who have established distribution networks in Japan to make sure the food gets to those who need it.

The goal of the outreach program is to ensure that food requiring little or no preparation – such as pre-made bento (lunch) boxes – can be provided to people who have been displaced.… Continue reading

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Farmers prevail in court decision on EPA livestock rules

In a major court victory for the American Farm Bureau Federation and other farm organizations, a unanimous federal court of appeals has ruled that the Environmental Protection Agency cannot require livestock farmers to apply for Clean Water Act permits unless their farms actually discharge manure into U.S. waters. The ruling was welcomed by the American Farm Bureau Federation, National Pork Producers Council and several other agriculture groups that filed suit against EPA in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit.

“For the second time, a U.S. Court of Appeals has ruled that EPA’s authority is limited by the Clean Water Act to jurisdiction over only actual discharges to navigable waters, not potential discharges,” said AFBF President Bob Stallman. “We are pleased that the federal courts have again reined in EPA’s unlawful regulation of livestock operations under the Clean Water Act. The court has affirmed that EPA, like other federal agencies, can only regulate where it has been authorized by Congress to do so.”

In the ruling, issued March 15, the Fifth Circuit concluded “The CWA provides a comprehensive liability scheme and the EPA’s attempt to supplement this scheme is in excess of its statutory authority.”

According to the ruling, non-discharging CAFOs (confined animal feeding operations) do not need permit coverage.… Continue reading

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USDA sets new standards for poultry

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced implementation of revised and new performance standards aimed at reducing the prevalence of Salmonella and Campylobacter in young chickens and turkeys. The standards will become effective in July 2011. With the new standards, FSIS is encouraging establishments slaughtering chicken and turkey to make continued reductions in the occurrence of pathogens – namely Salmonella and Campylobacter – in the products they produce.

After two years of enforcing the new standards, FSIS estimates that approximately 5,000 illnesses will be prevented each year under the new Campylobacter standards, and approximately 20,000 illnesses will be prevented under the revised Salmonella standards each year.

“These improved standards are a stronger buffer between foodborne illnesses and our consumers, especially our most vulnerable consumers – children, the elderly and those with weakened immune systems,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “There is no more important mission at USDA than ensuring the safety of our food, and we are working every day to lower the danger of foodborne illness.… Continue reading

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China opens to live swine

The National Swine Registry and purebred swine breeders breathed a collective sigh of relief after learning exports of live swine to China could resume pending H1N1 testing. China has been closed to U.S. swine since April 2009, following the discovery of H1N1 virus in humans in the U.S.

The opening followed a request from the USDA APHIS Veterinary Services to Chinese authorities, requesting acceptance of temporary testing for H1N1 in order to resume exports. Earlier this week, the Chinese Administration of Quality Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine responded with a letter to the USDA, saying they had agreed to accept temporary health testing for H1N1 and, based on this protocol, trade for U.S.-origin live swine can resume.

“This is a tremendous announcement for our purebred swine breeders whose primary export market, before 2009, was China,” said NSR CEO Darrell Anderson, noting the impact of the lost access over the past 22 months has been devastating to NSR’s exporting members.… Continue reading

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Sheep and goat blog

The thriving goat and sheep industry now has a new information resource in the Purdue Extension sheep and goat blog.

Producers can stay informed about industry trends and pick up management advice through the Web resource produced by Mike Neary, Purdue Extension small ruminant specialist.

“Goat and sheep producers want to know what other operations are doing,” Neary said. “The blog gives them information about education, Extension and items of interest — whether those are animal or human-related.”

The site, http://sheepngoats.wordpress.com , is updated every Wednesday with posts pertaining to goat and sheep operation management. Unlike many blogs, the sheep and goat blog offers research-based information, rather than resembling a personal journal. Readers can leave comments or questions on each post.

Recent posts have included information about breed selection, animal health, training livestock guard dogs, lambing problems and nutrition.

In Indiana, producers raise goats and sheep for meat, milk and wool, and current high market prices make it a good time to be involved in the industry, Neary said.… Continue reading

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Research sheds light on fat digestibility in pigs

Producers and feed companies add fat to swine diets to increase energy, but recent research from the University of Illinois suggests that measurements currently used for fat digestibility need to be updated.

“It’s critical that we gain a better understanding of the energy value of fat,” said Hans H. Stein, U of I professor in the Department of Animal Sciences. “If we don’t know the true energy value of fat, we can’t determine if it’s economical to add to the diet.”

In a recent experiment, Stein and his team of researchers studied how different types of diets affect endogenous losses of fat (fat excreted from pigs that did not originate from the diet). They measured endogenous losses of fat to determine the true digestibility of both intact and extracted corn oil. The intact corn oil was provided in the form of corn germ, and the extracted fat was provided as liquid corn oil.… Continue reading

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New Pork Campaign Unveiled

With a new focus on reaching creative, flavor-seeking home cooks who already prepare, eat and love pork, the National Pork Board today announced a new branding position celebrating pork’s ability to offer a wide range of options in the kitchen.  With PORK® now as the brand, the new campaign of: Pork® Be inspiredsm shows pork’s place in almost any menu, day part, cuisine and lifestyle, based on pork’s unique combination of flavor and versatility as the source of kitchen inspiration.

The new, fully integrated campaign features an updated look and feel, along with a new consumer target: the more than 82 million Americans who already cook, eat and love pork. Moving from a functional to a more emotional positioning, the campaign voice is proud, energetic, approachable and unapologetically optimistic about the unique attributes of the world’s most popular protein.

Evoking the taste of backyard barbeques, new and attainable flavor combinations or mid-week meals on the go, the bold product imagery celebrates one juicy, tender, flavorful pork meal after another.… Continue reading

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HSUS responds to OLCB veal vote

The following statement is from Wayne Pacelle, President and CEO of the Humane Society of the United States in response to the most recent Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board vote regarding veal:
The Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board voted 6-5 to permit the confinement of veal calves in crates so small they’re unable to turn around for more than half of their lives before slaughter, jeopardizing a carefully crafted animal welfare agreement reached last June between The Humane Society of the United States and eight leading agricultural trade organizations, including the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation.

In November 2010, the Livestock Board voted that all calves regardless of age must have the ability to turn around. Yesterday’s vote marked a reversal of that original stance, after a few Ohio veal producers complained about giving the animals more room. By the narrowest of margins – with Agriculture Director Jim Zehringer and state veterinarian Tony Forshey dissenting from the majority – the board allowed keeping calves in small, immobilizing crates for up to 10 weeks.… Continue reading

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