Farm Facts and Furrows Jan 29

Upcoming webinars

The Food Safety and Traceability Programs Branch deliver a series of Good Agricultural Practices Webinars and Good Manufacturing Processes Workshops. These are accessible on OMAF and MRA Website along with further details and links to registration. www.omafra.gov.on.ca

 

2014 RAIN Agriculture and Food Symposium

Bruce Station Hall (109 Station Rd., Bruce Mines) Tickets: Day 1 (Friday) $15, Day 2 (Saturday) $25, or both $35. RSVP to Erin Heeney: eheeny@ssmic.com, 705-942-7927 Ext. 3065. Day 1: Friday, February 7, 2014. Time: 5 pm (registration) to 9 pm. Dinner is included. Speaker: Bryan Gilvesy of YU Ranch in Tillsonburg. YU Ranch’s business model, marketing, and distribution strategies for selling regionally, innovation in the local food system, including YU Ranch’s Premier Award for their hybrid gas/electric freezer delivery mini-van known as the “Farmer’s Market Express.” Day 2: Saturday, February 8, 2014. Time: 9 am (registration) to 5 pm. Light breakfast and lunch is included. Speaker: Dr. Bob Bors from the University of Saskatchewan Fruit Program, Topics: Research at the University’s Fruit Program, including extensive experience with fruit tree propagation, hybridization, and breeding for improved cold-hardiness and how to select fruits to grow in cold climates.

 

Bale grazing

With bale grazing, ideally bales are placed in a pasture field in random rows late in the year, after the ground is frozen. The field is often fenced with electric wire. A cross wire is moved regularly allowing the cows access to a few bales at a time. The herd might be allowed 10-12 bales for five days. The wire is moved, allowing five more days of feeding. In other versions of bale grazing, a farmer places enough bales for a month or two. Others put out enough for three to five days. The key is to move bales around the field exposing all areas to the spreading of manure by the herd and organic matter left over from the bales. Certainly the longer the time between tractor start-ups the less fuel burned. Some important benefits of bale grazing: Less labour – the herd does not need to be fed daily; it is not necessary to start a tractor to do the feeding daily; no manure handling – spread by the cows; spring forage growth is rejuvenated; no bedding required; cows are healthier compared to being more confined and there is a reduction in overall wintering cost.