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Archive for January, 2012

In the winter, every day is a slow day on the farm. That is why we got so excited when our new hay wagon arrived this week. With this wagon, we will be able to transport hay to the far corners of the farm with fewer round-trips, so it will be easier to move the cattle all over the farm this winter. The wagon will also keep the cattle’s dinner up off the ground, so they can eat every scrap without the hay getting soiled and trampled.

Given the high price of organic hay, the wagon will pay for itself with the money we save on feed alone. But it’s also about taking care of the soil: fewer tractor trips and more frequent moves means less soil compaction and better manure spreading.

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There was a great interview on NHPR this morning of Gary Hirshberg, who is stepping down today as CEO of Stonyfield Farm. Hirshberg is going to focus more on his campaign to convince the government to require food producers to identify genetically engineered ingredients in food. The interview is definitely worth a listen. But if you don’t have time for that, his most convincing argument is about how GE crops are used in conjunction with huge amounts of chemical herbicides (for surpressing weeds). I was shocked to learn that Dow Chemical has even applied for permission to sell a new GE corn to be planted in conjunction with 2,4-D, a major component of Agent Orange. You can find more information (including a petition to the FDA) at http://justlabelit.org/.

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Last month, we got a visit from Tara Turcogeorge and Alicia Maclean, who work as veterinary technicians for the State of New Hampshire. They really gave our Temple Grandin corral a workout, testing our cattle for brucellosis and tuberculosis. (They test all cattle in the state on a regular basis.) While they were at it, they threw in rabies shots for free. Ouch! Thanks!

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