New Hampshire Apple Day Kicks Off Season at Sunnycrest Farm

(Right to left) Governor Chris Sununu joins NH Commissioner of Agriculture Shawn Jasper and Dan Hicks, owner of Sunnycrest Farm in Londonderry, to mark the official start of apple season in New Hampshire.

Thursday, September 6th marked the beginning of apple season in New Hampshire as Governor Chris Sununu made the ceremonial first pick at Sunnycrest Farm in Londonderry alongside Commissioner of Agriculture, Markets & Food Shawn Jasper, Sunnycrest owner Dan Hicks, and UNH Cooperative Extension Fruit & Vegetable Production Field Specialist George Hamilton. Also on hand were members of the New England Apple Association and New Hampshire Fruit Growers Association.

A large crowd showed up to Sunnycrest Farm in Londonderry to usher in the beginning of apple season in New Hampshire on September 6th. Above (left to right) Governor Chris Sununu chats with George Hamilton of UNH Cooperative Extension and Chuck Souther of Apple Hill Farm in Concord about the difference between nectarines and peaches (two other crops you can find at some local orchards!).

Governor Sununu proclaimed the day, “New Hampshire Apple Day” and spoke about the importance of agriculture to the state’s economy, from tourism to job creation and the environment.

“NH Apple Day serves to remind people that harvest season has begun at their local apple orchards and it’s a great time to visit!” said NH Department of Agriculture’s Gail McWilliam Jellie, in a statement.

Sunnycrest owner Dan Hicks echoed those sentiments. “It’s incredibly important to get out there and visit your local farm or orchard. Apple season is the perfect time to not only support local farmers, but to enjoy the beauty of the farm and spend some time outdoors.”

Governor Chris Sununu and NH Commissioner of Agriculture Shawn Jasper joined the Hicks Family and Sunnycrest Farm crew in Londonderry on September 6th to officially kick off apple season in New Hampshire.

Looking for a local farm? You can visit our New Hampshire Farm Bureau member Fruit & Veggie Producer List to find one near you! You can also learn more about Sunnycrest Farm and the unique challenges of farming in New Hampshire by watching our Risk Management Video Series from 2016 featuring five different Farm Bureau member farms.

 

NH Eat Local Month 2018

Throughout the month of August, New Hampshire Farm Bureau (NHFB) joins with 70+ partners throughout the state to highlight New Hampshire Eat Local Month — a month-long celebration of local food and New Hampshire farmers and producers.

“New Hampshire residents, and visitors alike, are showing unprecedented interest in local food, and this month-long celebration offers a great opportunity to feature New Hampshire grown foods and farms,” said Gail McWilliam Jellie from the New Hampshire Department of Agriculture, Markets & Food.

With 70+ partners working together to bring you great NH Eat Local Month festivities, it won’t be hard for you to find a way to get involved!

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Agriculture and America’s Pastime

Over the previous three years, over seven million households, on average, have tuned in to watch the Major League Baseball All-Star game and Tuesday night’s game should be no exception. Marking the mid-way point of the season, the All-Star Game pits the best players from the American League versus their National League counterparts for bragging rights at the highest level of America’s pastime.

This year, the midsummer classic is being hosted at Nationals Park in Washington, D.C., just a few miles away from the American Farm Bureau Federation headquarters. So, AFBF is swinging for the fences and placing an ad in the MLB All-Star Game Program.

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Dairy Farm Tour Workshop Prepares Farmers to Connect with Consumers

Sharing your story, connecting with the public, and educating new generations on the benefits of agriculture along with the quality of farmers' products and practices are key ways to strengthen the connection between producers and consumers. Why not accomplish all three and never leave your property?

In late March, Jessica Ziehm of the New York Animal Agriculture Coalition (NYAAC), Laura Hardie of New England Dairy Promotion Board (NEDPB), and Emily Getty of Stonyfield led a farm tour workshop for dairy farmers and stakeholders at Stonewall Farm in Keene. The goal of the workshop was to prepare farmers with the tools and resources they need to host their own farm tours.

Farm Bureau members and staff were there to participate and document the event. You can read more about the workshop here, watch the recap video produced by NHFB below, and download useful resources for hosting your own farm tours at the bottom of this page.

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Safety Program a Success for New Hampshire Farmers

Editor’s Note: March 4 – 10 is Agricultural Safety Awareness Program Week (ASAP). ASAP was created to bring awareness to safety and health issues facing the agriculture industry. The following article can also be found in the March/April Issue of ‘The Communicator’

Reflecting on his chosen profession, Chichester farmer and past Merrimack County Farm Bureau President, Steve MacCleery, paused before declaring, “The biggest thing I can say about farming is that it’s difficult, but I enjoy it.” Steve explained that he and his wife Holly didn’t get rich pursuing agriculture, but they agreed that it was a great way to raise their children and to enjoy earning a living. “Having said that, you have to try to be safe.”

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Ag Safety Awareness Week: No One Can Take Your Place

Concord, NH – Across the country, county and state Farm Bureaus are making safety a priority through the Agricultural Safety Awareness Program. As part of ASAP, March 4-10 has been designated as Agricultural Safety Awareness Week. U.S. Agricultural Safety and Health Centers will join Farm Bureau in promoting the week with its theme “No One Can Take Your Place.”

A different safety focus will be highlighted by New Hampshire Farm Bureau and U.S. Ag Centers each day of the week:

Monday, March 5 – Hearing
Tuesday, March 6 – Respiratory
Wednesday, March 7 – Impaired Driving
Thursday, March 8 – Fire
Friday, March 9 – General Health

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Bartletts Recognized with NHFB Profile Award

Bill & Heidi Bartlett of Bartlett’s Blueberry Farm in Newport were presented with the prestigious NHFB Profile Award by Seth Wilner at the NHFB 101st Annual Meeting.

Each year, NHFB has the honor of presenting the Profile Award to recognize a New Hampshire person or persons for distinguished service to agriculture and rural life. Nominations for this award come from County Farm Bureau Board of Directors and are judged by a panel of past Profile Award winners.

The 2017 Profile Award was presented to Bill & Heidi Bartlett of Bartlett Blueberry Farm in Newport, NH. Bill & Heidi Bartlett purchased what is now Bartlett’s Blueberry Farm in Newport in 1985 and have continued its growth as a successful farm and business for over 30 years. Beyond that, their contributions to the community have been just as important as their dedication to agriculture.

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NHFB Young Farmer Achievement Award Goes to Jeff Moore

Jeff Moore was presented with the NHFB Young Farmer Achievement Award by Gail McWilliam Jellie at the NHFB 101st Annual Meeting.

This year’s NHFB Young Farmer Achievement Award went to Jeff Moore of Windswept Maples Farm in Loudon, NH.

The NHFB Young Farmer Achievement Award competition recognizes young people between the ages of 18 to 35 who have excelled in their farming operation and have shown leadership abilities through Farm Bureau and in their community. The ideal candidate for the award is an individual or couple involved in production agriculture with the majority of their income subject to normal production risk.

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Bruce & Rebecca Stevens Win NHFB Excellence in Agriculture Award

State Representative Howard Pearl (center) presents the NHFB Young Farmer Excellence in Agriculture Award to Bruce & Rebecca Stevens of Epsom at the NHFB 101st Annual Meeting

The 2017 NHFB Young Farmer Excellence in Agriculture Award was given to Bruce & Rebecca Stevens of Epsom, NH. The award acknowledges the efforts of Young Farmers who do not derive the majority of their income from farming, but are actively contributing to agriculture and to their community.

Bruce & Rebecca Stevens have a small farm in Epsom raising beef cattle and hay. Rebecca became involved with FFA while attending Coe-Brown Northwood Academy winning numerous awards and serving as chapter Vice-President. She was instrumental in the formation of the school’s FFA Alumni Chapter and served two terms as President. Bruce gained experience in agriculture working for local dairy farms and eventually started working for Dairy Farmers of America as a milk truck driver. He now owns his own commercial trucking company. Rebecca has served on the Merrimack County Farm Bureau Board of Directors for many years and is currently serving her first term as President.

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Glen Putnam Takes Home Animal Husbandry Award

Glen Putnam was awarded the 2017 NHFB Young Farmer Animal Husbandry Award by NHFB Executive Director Diane Clary at the organization’s 101st Annual Meeting.

Glen Putnam was awarded this year’s NHFB Young Farmer Animal Husbandry Award. He owns and operates Winsome Farm Organics in Piermont, NH producing organic milk, beef, and more as a sixth generation farmer.

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Amelia Aznive Wins Young Farmer Discussion Meet

Amelia Aznive won the 2017 NHFB Young Farmer Discussion Meet at the organization’s 101st Annual Meeting. She will move on to compete nationally in Nashville, Tennessee in January.

Amelia Aznive of Concord, NH was named the winner of the 2017 NHFB Young Farmer Discussion Meet. Competitors in the Discussion Meet prepare thoughts and opinions on various subjects facing agriculture and cooperatively work towards a solution.

The goal of the Discussion Meet is to develop leaders for effective problem solving through group discussion, similar to the organization’s grassroots policy development process. The competition provides an opportunity for Young Farmers to build basic discussion skills, give and receive criticism in a helpful manner, develop an understanding of important issues, explore and pool knowledge to reach consensus, and solve problems.

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NHFB Holds 101st Annual Meeting

Attendees of the New Hampshire Farm Bureau Federation 101st Annual Meeting in Keene engaged in workshops presented by American Farm Bureau Federation staff.

New Hampshire Farm Bureau Federation (NHFB) held its 101st Annual Meeting on November 10th and 11th in Keene, NH. The event, hosted by Cheshire County Farm Bureau, offered farm tours, workshops, and competitions along with a chance to celebrate the accomplishments and achievements of NHFB members.

The second day of the meeting focused on the grassroots policy development process where NHFB members craft the policy that guides the organization. The House of Delegates also voted to reelect the current slate of officers as follows: Denis Ward of Monroe – President, Joyce Brady of Columbia – 1st Vice President, Matt Scruton – 2nd Vice President, Thomas McElroy – 2nd Vice President, Howard Pearl – Treasurer, Ruth Scruton – Associated Women of NHFB President, Alicia Pedemonti – Young Farmer Committee Chair.

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NHFB Young Farmers Receive $40,000 Grant from Hannaford Supermarkets

The New Hampshire Farm Bureau Young Farmers received a $40,000 dollar grant from Hannaford Supermarkets for their Harvest for All program. (left to right) Theo Mongeau, Young Farmer Committee Chair Amy Matarozzo, Leandra Pritchard, Young Farmer Coordinator Josh Marshall, Madison Hardy, and Tyler Hardy accept the check at a presentation held at Brookdale Fruit Farm in Hollis.

Concord, NH – Hannaford Supermarkets announced the donation of $40,000 dollars to the New Hampshire Farm Bureau (NHFB) Young Farmers Committee Harvest for All program on Monday, September 25th as well as donations to other groups and organizations in New England serving those at risk of going hungry. The donations, part of the Hannaford Helps initiative, were announced at Brookdale Fruit Farm in Hollis, where the NHFB Young Farmers were picking up farm fresh produce to deliver to the New Hampshire Food Bank.

Each year, as part of the Harvest for All program, the Young Farmers organize the collection and donation of healthful, nutritious, and locally raised produce and meat to food banks and soup kitchens across the state. In 2015 & 2016, the group transported over 13,000 pounds of food from NHFB member farms to the NH Food Bank and other local agencies. That dedication was noticed by Hannaford Supermarkets and their grant will help the project continue and expand.

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John Deere Partners with Farm Bureau to Offer New Benefit!

John Deere now offers complimentary John Deere Rewards upgrade (Platinum 2 status) to members of New Hampshire Farm Bureau – which unlocks the best loyalty rewards including valuable equipment discounts. Register today, and explore all that Rewards has to offer.

It’s easy to become a rewards member too! Just sign up for John Deere Rewards program using a valid member ID and zip code for membership verification, and receive Platinum 2 level benefits by visiting www.JohnDeere.com/FarmBureau!

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County Annual Meeting Season

County Annual Meeting Season: The Meaning of Grassroots!

By Diane Clary; NHFB Executive Director

New Hampshire Farm Bureau Executive Director, Diane Clary

NHFB, The Voice of Agriculture, is a “Grassroots” organization. That means everything we do originates from the individual member. Each voting member has an equal voice and that voice steers Farm Bureau. If you don’t add your “voice,” our message is diminished. New Hampshire Farm Bureau demonstrates its strength through membership and member participation. We are nothing without our members and our member’s voices. “How can I add my voice to our message?” you ask. Attend your County and State Annual Meetings. Not only will you enjoy great fellowship with great people but you will have the opportunity to have YOUR VOICE heard. County and State staff work very hard to make these events worthwhile for attendees and your attendance would show appreciation of these efforts. Change starts with the individual member, share your concerns with the county and begin the process of grassroots policy development. Get your voice heard and make a difference. If you would rather have a more supportive roll and less vocal roll; attend the meeting so that you will be informed on the issues and make your decision of support based on all of the information.

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