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.
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!
Concord, NH – Glen Putnam has been elected Chair of the New Hampshire Farm Bureau Federation (NHFB) Veterans in Agriculture Committee. The Veterans in Agriculture Committee was approved by the NHFB Board of Directors in December and held its first meeting in March. The stated mission of the committee is to recruit, educate, support, and promote veterans and their families in agriculture.
“Growing up I was surrounded by both farmers and veterans,” Putnam said, “I couldn’t decide which one I wanted to be, so I did both. Now to be working with Farm Bureau to bring the two together is both an honor and a privilege.”
Putnam, who is also President of Grafton County Farm Bureau, currently serves in the United States Navy Reserve and is the owner/operator of Winsome Farm Organics in Piermont.
Concord, NH February 14, 2017 – The New Hampshire Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers were recognized by the American Farm Bureau Federation with the 2017 Harvest For All Most Innovative Award at the 2017 AFBF FUSION Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. The award is given annually to Young Farmer Programs with a Harvest for All project that is new, unique, impactful, productive and can be easily replicated in other states seeking to have a greater impact on hunger relief in their communities. With support from Nationwide Insurance, the award also provides funds for future Harvest For All projects.
In 2016, the NHFB Young Farmers donated 300 pounds of fresh ground beef to five New Hampshire food pantries & soup kitchens as part of the Harvest For All campaign. The Angus-Holstein calf was donated by Hatchland Farm in North Haverhill and raised by NHFB Young Farmer Chair, Amy Matarozzo, and her husband Brian at their farm, LorrenJoyce Farm, in Center Barnstead for a full year.
Matarozzo accepted the award from AFBF President Zippy Duvall at the FUSION conference. “It is a true honor to accept national recognition for our hard work to provide fresh beef to our hungry community. We look forward to continuing to make a difference in the community,” Matarozzo said, “Thank you to all of our sponsors and contributors to the project!”
By Christina Murdock, DVM
The FDA policy known as the Veterinary Feed Directive came into effect on January 1, 2017. It was passed to promote the judicious use of antimicrobials that affect both human and animal health, but I understand there will be frustration among the agricultural community. I just want everyone to understand why it came about and what this new policy entails.
Back in 2015 the White House issued its National Action Plan For Combating Antibiotic-Resistant Bacteria. It may seem like common sense, but what the public health officials want people to understand is that Antimicrobial Resistance is a scary concept: “The Right Antibiotic at the Right Time at the Right Dose for the Right Duration.” The FDA is responsible for regulating animal drugs, feeds, devices, and most animal health products. They want veterinarians to oversee the use of medicines that may have an effect on the human population who consume animals that may have undergone treatment. Under the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act (FD and C), the FDA has the broad mandate to assure safety and effectiveness of drugs, devices, and the safety of the food supply.
Since a New Hampshire Supreme Court Ruling last summer saying that agritourism is not defined as agriculture in the current RSA (RSA 21:34-a), New Hampshire Farm Bureau members and staff have been working closely with political leaders in both the New Hampshire Senate and House of Representatives to come up with legislation to clarify the RSA regarding agriculture here in New Hampshire and to unambiguously lay out the connection between agritourism and agriculture, keeping in mind the rights of towns and their planners to have local controls.
September’s collection alone brought in 3,172 pounds of fruits and vegetables to the New Hampshire Food Bank. Combined with a collection in August of just over 1,900 pounds, New Hampshire farms have, in the last two months, provided over 4,200 meals to hungry New Hampshire residents according to Nancy Mellitt, New Hampshire Food Bank’s Director of Development. This goes a long way towards supporting the one in nine individuals who are statistically food insecure in our state.
For both collections, New Hampshire Farm Bureau Young Farmer members and coordinators spent the day travelling to area farms picking up donations and transporting them to their destination. Young Farmer Co-chairs Amy Matarozzo and Valerie Drown and Young Farmer member Theodore Mongeau volunteered their time and transportation resources to make it all possible.
Ten farms contributed to this year’s donations by giving a wide range of produce including tomatoes, cabbage, apples, zucchini, peppers, corn, and winter squash. Autumn View Farm in Pittsfield, LaValley Farms in Hooksett, J+F Farms in Derry, Wilson Farms in Litchfield, Normanton Farm in Litchfield, Brookdale Fruit Farm in Hollis, Marshall Pumpkin Farm in Boscawen, Apple Hill Farm in Concord, Carter Hill Orchard in Concord, and Sunnycrest Farm in Londonderry all were glad to donate to such a worthy cause.
The New Hampshire Farm Bureau Young Farmers have been collecting donations in conjunction with the Harvest For All campaign, a partnership with the American Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers Program and Feeding America, a nationwide network of food banks, for over 5 years. They are currently raising a beef cow that will be donated for next year’s Harvest For All campaign.
To make donations towards the Harvest For All campaign visit www.nhfarmbureau.org and look for Harvest For All under the Young Farmer tab under Membership or contact Josh Marshall at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 224-1934.
Through the Harvest For All campaign, a partnership with American Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers and Ranchers Program and Feeding America, a nationwide network of food banks, New Hampshire Farm Bureau Young Farmers organized and collected the donation of over 1,900 pounds of fresh produce from six New Hampshire farms on Monday, August 3rd. NHFBF Young Farmer Co-Chair Amy Gowell Drogue and Co-Coordinators Leandra Pritchard and Josh Marshall picked up fresh vegetables from Autumn View Farm in Pittsfield, Lavalley Farm in Hooksett, J & F Farm in Derry, Wilson Farm and Steve Normanton Farm in Litchfield, and Brookdale Fruit Farm in Hollis delivering the donations to the New Hampshire Food Bank in Manchester and the Friendly Kitchen in Concord.
Although the honey bee is typically what comes to mind when thinking about pollinators, there are lots of native insects doing their part to produce our food as well. Bumble bees, carpenter bees, leaf cutter bees, and mason bees are just some of New Hampshire’s native bees. Distinct from social bees like the honey bee, carpenter and mason bees are two examples of solitary bees that don’t form colonies. Instead, they form individual nests utilizing wood or mud and water respectively. UNH Cooperative Extension Field Specialist George Hamilton works extensively with Hillsborough County growers. “They rely on [native pollinators] more than they even know.” Hamilton said. Specifically, Hamilton says, the squash bee is one of the, “unsung and unseen heroes” pollinating cucurbits like squash and pumpkins. UNH assistant professor and researcher Sandra Rehan estimates that there could be up to 250 bee species in New Hampshire. She and a team at the New Hampshire Agricultural Experiment Station at UNH are conducting research monitoring native bee populations and their habitat with hopes of informing farmers and policy makers with how best to promote health and productivity of native pollinators. There they have constructed a ‘Bee Hotel’ with different features to attract specific bees. You will also find butterflies, moths, beetles, and even flies pollinating crops here in New Hampshire.
Fairy tales often start with a twist of fate. For Frank and Pauline Scruton, that twist came in the form of an October 1944 issue of Merrimack Monthly Messenger, a periodical published by the Merrimack Farmer’s Exchange. That particular issue featured a young Pauline Phelps on the cover. The story goes that Frank’s Mother saw the magazine and told him, “Go find that girl and marry her.” While Frank didn’t always listen to his mother, this time he did. Their first date was at the Rochester Fair in 1945 and in June of 1946 Frank and Pauline were married.
NEWPORT, NH – May 11th 2015 – Sullivan County Farm Bureau hosted a dinner at the Sugar River Valley Regional Technical Center (SRVRTC) in Newport on May, 11th inviting members from the New Hampshire House of Representatives Environment and Agriculture Committee and Sullivan County as their honorable guests. The event was an occasion for Sullivan County Farm Bureau to open a dialogue with their representatives and other state legislators to discuss the important role agriculture continues to play in the county and across the state. New Hampshire Farm Bureau President, Jeff Holmes, and NHFBF Staff were also present taking the opportunity to share concerns and positions on current and future legislation.
Boscawen, NH – Last November Adam and Patricia Crete of Highway View Farm in Boscawen received the Young Farmer Achievement Award at the New Hampshire Farm Bureau Federation 99th annual meeting. In early April, Adam received a big reminder of just how much that honor means when a Kubota M110GX tractor arrived at the farm. Along with a prize from Poulin Grain and the opportunity to represent New Hampshire at the American Farm Bureau Convention in San Diego this past January, the Cretes received the use of the Kubota tractor for six months or 250 hours.
Since 1992, through a partnership with Kubota Tractor Corporation and Pinnacleview Equipment of Walpole, the Young Farmer Achievement Award recipient has been given the use of a tractor through the Kubota Young Farmer Program. Kubota has a proud history of supporting Farm Bureau, at the state and federal level, and it’s Young Farmer Award.
Adam has been busy at the farm and is certainly getting use out of the tractor. He says this time of year calls for spreading manure, tilling under cover crops, and planting corn and that the use of the new tractor is helping on all accounts. He has been very pleased with the tractor’s versatility as he moves from the field to the yard saying, “The bucket is coming in handy”.
To be eligible for the Achievement Award, contestants must be between the ages of 18-35 and members in good standing with their county Farm Bureaus. They must be actively engaged in farming with a majority of their income coming from production agriculture.