Be the voice, resource, and advocate for farm families and agriculture,
while promoting stewardship for today and future generations.
DriftWatch Training Event- Wednesday April 30th
Reid Sprenkel, President/CEO of FieldWatch, Inc. will be conducting a DriftWatch Training Event Wednesday April 30th 9:00am--‐Noon in Springfield Illinois at the Illinois Department of Agriculture Headquarters located at the State Fairgrounds.
This training is sponsored by FieldWatch, Illinois Department of Agriculture and University of Illinois Extension Logan--‐ Menard--‐Sangamon Unit. Pre--‐registration is requested by visiting U of I Extension website at http://web.extension.illinois.edu/lms/.
The DriftWatch Specialty Crop site Registry is an on--‐line specialty crop and apiary tool to promote communications between apiary and specialty crop producers and pesticide applicators in order to maximize yields and increase productivity by minimizing losses due to unintended spray drift. With DriftWatch, beekeepers and producers of high--‐value specialty crops, such as tomatoes, fruit trees, grapes and vegetables, register their sites on—line and provide contact information about their operation. Likewise, pesticide applicators utilize the site to help determine the scope and location of specialty sites in their trade areas. DriftWatch provides the platform to facilitate better awareness, communication and interaction between all parties as one part of ongoing stewardship activities.
Reid will cover in depth:
How to sign--‐up, log in and submit sites
How applicators access information
How to add, edit and delete information regarding specialty crop locations
This is intended for industry leaders in agriculture, specialty crop growers, beekeepers and applicators. Having timely and accurate information registered is a key to everyone’s success.
DriftWatch was adopted by the Illinois Department of Agriculture in 2011.
Copy of Press Release
Grain Bin Safety/Rescue Course- Saturday, July 26th
The Winnebago-Boone Young Leaders is hosting a three-hour Grain Bin Safety/Rescue course for farm families on Saturday, July 26th from 10 a.m. - 2 p.m. (lunch included) at the Farm Bureau building located at 1925 S Meridian Road, Rockford, IL. The course will be taught by Stateline Farm Rescue which was founded to fulfill the need for farm and agricultural rescue training in the Upper Midwest, and is based in the Wisconsin-Illinois stateline area. Each member of their highly-trained instructor team has many years of fire and rescue experience, and each is currently active in fire service. In addition, these instructors have all either worked on or owned their own farm operation; and each has excellent working knowledge of modern farm equipment, along with the hazards involved with dangerous farm occupations.
The Stateline Farm Rescue Grain Bin Safety/Rescue course is designed to give you knowledge of grain bin design and structure, as well as the dangers involved in working with and around these structures. Grain handling equipment and grain movement are also covered. Hands-on training utilizing their custom-built grain bin entrapment simulator will follow the classroom portion of the course.
This is a free course; however, seats are limited. To reserve your seats, please contact the office at 815-962-0653.
Defensive Driving Course- October 21-22, 2014
The Winnebago-Boone Farm Bureau is sponsoring a Defensive Driving course on October 21st and 22nd. The class will be held at the Winnebago-Boone Farm Bureau Building located at 1925 S Meridian Road, Rockford, IL. The course is open to any Farm Bureau member, especially those members that are 55 years and older and COUNTRY Financial insured.
Classes start at 10 a.m. and will conclude at approximately 3 p.m. each day. The registration fee is $18.00 per person which covers the cost of the course materials and the presenter. The Winnebago-Boone Farm Bureau will provide a free lunch on both days.
Those completing the course are eligible to receive a discount on their auto insurance, but they must attend both days to qualify for the discount. An examination is NOT required to complete the course or receive certification.
Advanced reservations are required and the class size is limited to 25 people. Act now to take advantage of this cost-saving traffic safety program. Call the Farm Bureau office at 815-962-0653 to make a reservation or for more information. Reservations will be taken on a first come, first serve basis. Registration fee is due by October 13th.
Farm Bureau Member Honored with the 2014 Pork Promoter of the Year Award
Carrie Pollard of Rockford, Ill. was recognized by the Illinois Pork Producers Association (IPPA) as the 2014 Pork Promoter of the Year Award winner at the IL Pork Expo in Peoria.
This award recognizes an individual, couple, or family who has done an outstanding job promoting pork and/or the pork industry on a local, regional, or state level.
“Carrie has been instrumental to the success of many IPPA activities and has freely given of her time and assisted in whatever way possible to further promote the pork industry to consumers.” said Todd Dail, a pork producer from Erie, Ill. and current IPPA President.
Growing up on a 200-sow, farrow-to-finish operation in western Illinois, instilled a deep passion for Carrie for the pork industry. While she doesn’t currently have her own pigs, she is an active participant in the swine industry, helping to improve the consumer perception of pork, so that there is still a vibrant pork industry when she does have her own barns.
In the meantime, Carrie serves as Technical Services Manager for Bethany Animal Hospital in Sycamore. There she puts her M.S. & B.S. degrees from the University of Illinois to work, managing the environmental compliance and building construction for the clinic’s managed farms; while also working on wean to finish consultation and data analysis.
Carrie is a former board member of the DeKalb Area Pork Producers and served as an active Board Member of the Illinois Pork Producers Association for three years. She served as the District 1 representative. During her time on the board, Carrie was always one of the board members that showed up to help at numerous activities.
Carrie was active on a variety of IPPA committees including the education/youth and marketing committee. She volunteered at many events including the White Sox tailgate and numerous grocery store demos. Carrie volunteered back to back weekends this past August for a special promotion with Dominicks stores and the Illinois Farm Families. She handed out samples and talked to shoppers about pork and pork production issues.
Her involvement on the IPPA Board began because Carrie wanted to give back to an organization that she has been involved with since she was young. She wanted to work with all different size operations and varied producer viewpoints to help develop policies to benefit the pork industry.
Carrie is an extremely active Operation Main Street (OMS) speaker, having scheduled more than 100 presentations throughout northern Illinois, spending a great deal of time in the Chicago suburbs educating consumers on where their pork comes from. Her efforts help reach into an area of the state where people the industry really needs to reach are located. Carrie works to be proactive in making sure consumers are educated about pork production. She always leaves these presentations feeling re-energized about helping to improve the pork industry image.
Both Carrie, and her husband, Brent, have been active in the Illinois Farm Bureau Young Leaders and Illinois Farm Families efforts.
Brent & Carrie recently took over full ownership of the family’s 100 cow dairy in Rockford in 2014, so they stay quite busy on the home farm. They are members of First Presbyterian Church in Winnebago and have a 1 year old daughter, Ainsley.
“Telling the pork producer story has been a mission of Carrie’s the last several years,” said Dail. “Carrie has gone above and beyond in her support of the pork industry in Illinois. Her time and efforts have been a true blessing to the IPPA organization and the pork industry.”
Seed that has been developed with a genetically modified organism (GMO) is most often found in corn and soybean seed varieties. Farmers do not have any wheat GMO seed varieties that they can buy. Most of the fruit and vegetable production is produced for local food markets and is mainly organic and non-GMO.
So that leaves corn and soybeans. I have grown both GMO and non-GMO varieties. What I plant depends on; seed variety yield, the weeds and insects that I find in my fields, and market prices. I sell my grain to two local elevators. One contracts directly with farmers to raise specific varieties of corn and soybeans depending on what a buyer such as a food processor wants. The grain buyer at that elevator estimated about 90% of the soybean seed varieties grown in the local area are GMO and 80% of the corn.
Working through the math, a good estimate would be about 70% of the farm land acres in Boone County are grown using a GMO seed variety."- Ken
Agricultural Security & Terrorism Awareness
In January 2013, the Winnebago Community Emergency Response Team (CERT) in partnership with Win-Bur-Sew Fire Department hosted an information meeting on “Agricultural Security & Terrorism”. The presentation was given by Steffan Nass, Weapons of Mass Destruction Coordinator- FBI’s Springfield Division.
Agro-Terrorism is defined as the deliberate introduction, use, or threatened use, of a chemical, biological, radiological, nuclear, or explosive agent against one or more components of the food or agriculture sectors, with the goal of causing mortality or morbidity, generating fee, precipitating economic loss, or undermining sector stability and confidence in government.
Here are a few indicators of Agro-Terrorism.
Agricultural Retail Facilities should report any of the following:
Producers and Auction Markets should report any of the following:
Aerial Applicators should report any tampering or attempts to purchase or rent aircraft or chemicals.
Suspicious signs and symptoms of illnesses in employees should be reported to your local health department. Health officials should be made aware of the emergency, normal duties and any contact with sick animals that may have led to the illness. Details of contact with feed products, medical supplies, or chemicals that the employee may have had contact with should also be noted.
Suspicious signs and symptoms of illnesses in animals (such as blistering or ruptured blisters around the mouth, nose, teats, or hooves; central nervous system disorders that prevent the animal from rising or walking normally; loss of appetite and conditioning; swelling around the eyes and neck in poultry; dramatic drop in egg or milk production; large number of dead insects, rodents or wildlife; and unusual ticks or maggots) should be reported to your veterinarian.
If a crime is in progress, CALL 9-1-1 immediately. If you have information about a crime, or to report suspicious activity, please contact the Federal Bureau of Investigation at (217) 522-9675. The following information is needed:
This information was provided by the Illinois Agro-Security Working Group. The Illinois Agro-Security Working group is a partnership between frontline agricultural industry personnel and local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies for the purpose of preventing criminal and terrorist activities in and around Illinois agriculture and food systems. The Federal Bureau of Investigation, Illinois Department of Agriculture, Illinois Fertilizer Chemical Association, Illinois Pork Producers, Illinois Soybean Association, Illinois Corn Growers Association, Illinois Farm Bureau, Illinois Beef Association, and the United States Department of Agriculture form the Illinois Agro-Security Working Group.
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