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Archive for the ‘The Weekly Round Up’ Category

Happy Friday, all! Big plans this weekend? Hubs and I have big plans that involve little to no sleep because we’re moving H to her ‘big girl bed.’

If that doesn’t mean, “Congrats, mom and dad, no sleep for you,” I don’t know what does.

But hey, what are parents if they aren’t gluttons for punishment? Anyway, on to the Weekly Round Up!

  • The big news here in the agriculture community is the current state of the farm economy. If you’re not intimately involved in agriculture, it may be news to you. But for farmers, the downturn in the farm economy has been brewing for a while and it doesn’t look to improve too soon. To learn more about why that’s a problem for farmers – and you – check out these articles from Reuters (this one features one of my favorite farmers, Dave Kestel!) and Farm Futures.
  • Along the same lines, Illinois Corn Growers posted an excellent breakdown of how ag products are priced and the share the farmers receives – it’s Ag Econ 101. Where was this when I was in college?
  • This, because it’s awesome. Here’s the guys and gals out there growing our food. FB_IMG_1459210414746
  • In the same vein as the farm economy stories I mentioned above, here’s another that you may not be aware of. Recently, a wildfire broke out in Oklahoma and then rapidly moved into Kansas. Across the two states, ranchlands were burned, putting ranchers in a tough spot coming in to spring. For more information on how ranchers are dealing with the fires, check out this post from Tales from a Kansas Farm Mom.
  • This, because it doesn’t seem like a day goes by without hearing some other completely incorrect nugget of information regarding GMOs. This? This is good stuff. AnFB_IMG_1454119992741
  • And, speaking of GMOs – check out this article. I realize I’m a little biased because I think GMOs are all around pretty great. And I do have some issues with a couple of the statements made here (especially about pesticide use), but overall, I think it’s a great piece that outlines just how silly mandatory GMO labeling actually is.
  • And finally, this. Because, obviously. Farm to table

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It’s time for another edition of the Weekly Round Up. We have a lot of ground to cover, so buckle up and enjoy the ride.

  • Check out this awesome video about Concrete Cowboys, kids in Philadelphia who ride horses in the heart of the city.
  • If you’ve visited Standing Out in the Field before, you might remember me telling you about my own farm background, and the hard-working farm womenmost importantly my mom — I’m privileged to know. Well, direct from Illinois Farmer Today, here are some more pretty extraordinary farm women who are blazing the agricultural trail. Check it out.  All-States-Womeninag%20(1)
  • This, because cheese is awesome. Cheese
  • This blog post, from Illinois Farm Families, which talks about steps farm families take to ensure they’re raising animals responsibly. It’s a great read if you have questions about how food animals are raised and cared for.
  • This, because it’s almost Easter and I can’t think of anything more Easter-y than this cute picture of a calf and a chick. Bonus points because it’s a Jersey calf.calf
  • Last week, I mentioned the proposed cuts to the ag education line item. This time, the Chicago Tribune is taking on the Governor’s proposed cuts. It’s a great story, but I’m really sharing it because it features a school I really love – Chicago High School for Ag Sciences. If nothing else, read it to learn more about CHSAS.

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It’s time for another edition of the Weekly Round Up, so grab a snack and a drink, settle in on the couch and get ready for some of the week’s best stories, videos and memes!

  • Remember me telling you about a little girl who sustained injuries from a house fire? Reese has dairy cattle and I know (well, know of, more like) her parents because of my years in show ring. Anyway, two years ago, Reese and her sister, Brinkley, were staying at their grandparents’ house when a fire broke out. Her sister and grandfather were okay, but Reese and her grandmother suffered pretty extensive injuries, with Reese bearing the brunt. Well, finally, after nearly 700 days in the hospital, Reese is going home! Check out the story in Bullvine (a dairy mag) and keep the Kleenexes handy.
  • This, which is so awesome, I’m sharing it again. Because I can’t remember if I’ve already shared it once.  FB_IMG_1454818465099
  • If you live in the Midwest, you’ve no doubt seen auger wagon, combines, tractors and planters moving slowly down the road. But, do you have any idea how much that very necessary equipment costs farmers? Illinois Corn Growers gave an excellent breakdown of the Heavy Cost of Machinery on their blog, Corn Corps. Check it out.
  • This, because, obviously. It was 72 degrees two days ago. Today, it has barely broken 40 degrees. And there’s snow in the forecast for the weekend. FB_IMG_1456014244576
  • If you’re not an Illinois resident, you may be unaware of the budget situation with which we’re currently dealing. The situation is this: We don’t have a budget and we probably won’t have one for quite some time. We’re now approaching one full year without the governor and legislature working together enough to get a budget in place. All of that political wrangling means that bills are going unpaid and state programs are being affected. The latest to hit the chopping block was the agriculture education line item, when the governor decided to zero out the funding in early March. To learn more about how this will affect students, check out these stories from WEEK and Prairie Farmer.
  • This, which I obviously love. And yes, I can say, ‘yes’ to everything on this list. It’s a badge of honor. 12794340_10208972861066778_8754308815924586604_n
  • And finally, this story from Forbes, about the USDA’s Certified Organic label. I’ve talked quite a bit about conventionally-raised vs. organic foods and how marketing plays a big role in the way both are perceived by consumers. This piece goes a bit deeper and it’s excellent.

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It’s time for another edition of the Weekly Round Up! Here’s what’s on the docket for this week:

  • Ever wonder what happens to milk after it leave the farm and before it gets to your refrigerator? Well, if you do, take a look at the this Michigan State University article to get all of your questions answered. It covers all steps — and hopefully all of your questions!
  • And speaking of milk… Whats in milk
  • This article, from BEEF Magazine, which talks about Wendy’s stance on antibiotic use in food animals. Of note, this statement from Dennis Hecker, senior vice president of quality assurance for Wendy’s: “At Wendy’s, we have an opportunity and a desire to care for our customers and employees while also promoting the health and welfare of the animals that provide our food. Our goal is to work with our supply partners to refine, reduce, and replace antibiotic therapy through their judicious use and by exploring animal management practices that do not rely on medically important antibiotics to increase production yields.” They sure have a different take on handling the situation than other fast food chains (I’m lookin’ at you, Subway.).
  • This, because you may need to know it for a game of trivia at some point. Tractors
  • And this post, from Holly Spangler, which is oh so moving and beautiful. Farmer or not, you’ll find meaning in this.

 

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It’s Friday! I mean, seriously, were more beautiful words ever spoken? I think not.

Anyway, as is usually the case around here, Friday means it’s time for another edition of the Weekly Round Up. Here’s what’s on tap for this week:

  • You’re probably aware of my love for the Blue and Gold jacket. I was an FFA member all the way through high school and am not ashamed to say that it helped shape who I am today. Heck, it even helped me land on a career choice. Given that, it’s no surprise that I don’t take kindly to people who rail against it, like a PETA blogger this week, who said, “FFA is lame AF.” I was all piped up and ready to respond, when I saw something amazing happening: Rather than respond to the blog and effectively promote it just by sharing, FFA members and alumni across the U.S. started sharing their FFA memories, pictures and positive moments instead. Talk about powerful. Here’s my favorite post – be sure to check it out.
  • This, because you know I love a good play on words. And cheese. Sweet Dreams
  • This article, from the Huffington Post. We’ve covered Bill Nye’s (Bill! Bill! Bill! – you know you were singing it in your head) switch from anti-GMO to pro-GMO before, but this piece, from Dr. Robert T. Fraley at Monsanto, offers a different take on why he switched.
  • And, speaking of GMOs, this story which appeared on CBS Sunday Morning. If you have questions about GMOs, this story does an excellent job of presenting both sides of the story.
  • This video, from Steve Harvey. Yes, Steve Harvey. He’s a well-known comedian, but did you know he grew up on a farm, too? In a rare moment where he’s not cracking jokes, Harvey talks about what it meant to grow up on a farm, and what he learned from the experience. It’s beautiful.
  • This, because whether you’re a farmer, accountant, writer, office manager or kid, this is true. Always. New Start

 

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You guys. Did you know it’s January. And not just January – it’s January 15. We’re halfway through the month.

How the heck did that happen?

Anyway, it has been a while since we’ve done the Weekly Round Up and that means I have a lot of stuff to share. Like, a whole lot. So, let’s get right down to it:

  • First, this short video from the Center for Accountability in Science. It’s a great video which talks about how farmers use antibiotics and what that means for humans consuming meat from animals treated with antibiotics. If you have questions about how your meat is raised, and how it’s treated when it’s sick, this video is for you.
  • This article, from Forbes, which discusses Chipotle’s recent fall from grace. I’ve talked a lot about Chipotle here on the blog, and why I’m not a fan of their marketing campaign (Read: It’s a web of lies!). In December, the company, famous for its “Food with Integrity,” showed not only does it need to clean up its marketing campaign, but their restaurants in general. Ugh.
  • This. You know, just a little food for thought. Tomatoes
  • This article, from the Huffington Post, which has nothing to do with farmers, but everything to do with food — and how our kids eat it. Or in my case, how our toddler’s throw it on the floor, dump it in their heads, feed it to the dog and smear it on the table — basically anything but actually eat it. I found it quite a while ago, but it’s a really great article, and after testing it out with my own hard-headed munchkin, it’s got some pretty great advice.
  • This article, from U.S. News and World Report, about how today’s farmers are working hard to run sustainable farms. Excellent stuff in this one, folks.
  • Do you have questions about convention dairy farms vs. organic dairy farms? If so, this blog post, from The Farmer’s Wifee, does an excellent job of explaining just how many rules all dairy farms have to follow. It’s a great read.

And finally, a request: What do you want to see? I’m thinking of revamping things a bit, and I would love to know what you want to know. Would you like to see more myth-busting, agriculture style? Or, maybe you would be interested in farmer features. How about recipes? What would really get you excited to check things out? Let me know in the comments!

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It’s time for another edition of the Weekly Round Up!

  • Did you know it’s World Food Day? Me neither. To celebrate, maybe the Hubs and I will plan a trip to our favorite pizza joint — that is, if we can score a babysitter. If you’re still unsure what to do, check out this list from the Penny Hoarder Blog (one of my FAVORITE blogs. I mean, who doesn’t like saving money?), which tallies the best cities for foodies on a budget. Want to dig deeper? Check out this article from International Business Times about female farmers being the key to food security.
  • Na na na na na na na na BATMAN!Batman
  • If you view anything from this week’s Weekly Round Up, it needs to be this. It’s an awesome project called Acres + Avenues, which pairs Millennials and farmers so the pairs can see what they have in common…and what they don’t. The episodes are funny, endearing and really interesting. And you’ll learn something, too. Seriously, check it out. I’ll wait here until you’re done.
  • This, because even farmers are getting in on the selfie trend. Selfie Stick Farming
  • This piece from Holly Spangler over at Prairie Farmer. As someone who is involved in agriculture and the agriculture industry, I cannot agree more with what Holly says in her most recent blog. And I firmly believe that most farmers follow her line of thinking, too. Also, her comment about chickens. Anyone who has EVER had to deal with them can identify, I promise:

“I believe in a food system that encourages choices, rather than limits them. I believe in an agriculture that can indulge the tiniest specialty market, while simultaneously shipping more than 465 million bushels of #2 yellow corn to Japan.”

And, bonus for the week, this: go cubs goThis picture was taken on a farm in Spring Grove, Ill. Much like Lincoln’s famous speech of a house divided, we’ve been a state divided for the better part of a week. But, a week later, the Cardinals are done for the season and the Cubs are headed to NY to face the Mets.

I have to say, I’m not a die hard Cub fan like the Hubs, nor am I a die hard Cards fan. But, that series was a joy to watch. Thanks to the Cards for an excellent season and series. Now it’s on to NY! Happy Friday.

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