In this issue: A visit to Cherry Hill, FSA loan increases, May 7th in Blair Co., Mushrooms May 14 in Lehigh, Next Level Sales Philly/Honesdale, Rent ag equipment in Bedford.
Cherry Hill Farm of Tyrone, PA, hosted students from the Penn State Student Farm on April 6th. Owner Beth Futrick is an Army veteran and one of two PA Agricultural Ombudsmen. The tour, coordinated by the PA Veteran Farming Project, provided the students information on careers in agriculture for veterans and civilian students. Siena Chrisman was the Student Farm coordinator for the event.
At Cherry Hill Farm Beth raises Boer goats for breeding, show and market on 100 acres of hilly pasture. The farm's hilly terrain helps the goats develop strong musculature.
In addition to the breeding program, Futrick handcrafts goat milk soap from natural fats and oils. Our soaps are made and we only use high quality essential oils and fragrances for our soap. Learn more about the farm athttps://www.facebook.com/tiptonfarm/
Veteran Beth Futrick of Cherry Hill Farm shares this learning opportunity May 7 in Blair Co.:
The PA Ag Ombudsman Program is hosting a producer meeting on May 7 to discuss farm diversification, ag business opportunities, and the new PA Farm Bill. Scott Sheely with PDA will be in Blair Co. to give an overview of the Bill.
We also have speakers from PA Certified Organics, Penn State Extension, Local Growers, and Small Business Association to discuss growing hemp, becoming organically certified, Food Safety and GAP laws, developing a business plan and funding sources that support agriculture.
From East Coast Equestrian: "Devoting yourself to a good cause is a challenge, but Sara Hodgkiss takes it a step farther, addressing two needs at once. Woerth It Hollow, Inc., in Kirkwood, PA, has both an equine/animal rescue and a program to assist veterans and the disabled by allowing them to embrace every aspect of rescue farming. Their slogan is “Every Little Effort is Woerth It”. Read more: Veterans Find Solace Amid Rescued Horses at Woerth It Hollow
The ‘Next Level Sales’ Workshop Series is hosted by Penn State Extension in partnership with The Food Trust in Philadelphia.
Key changes include:
The Direct Operating Loan limit increased from $300,000 to $400,000; Guaranteed Operating Loan limit increased from $ 1.429 million to $1.75 million. Operating loans help producers pay for normal operating expenses, including machinery and equipment, seed, livestock feed, and more.
The Direct Farm Ownership Loan limit increased from $300,000 to $600,000, and the Guaranteed Farm Ownership Loan limit increased from $1.429 million to $1.75 million. Farm ownership loans help producers become owner-operators of family farms as well as improve and expand current operations.
Producers can now receive both a $50,000 Farm Ownership Microloan and a $50,000 Operating Microloan. Microloans provide flexible access to credit for small, beginning, niche, and non-traditional farm operations.
Beginning and socially disadvantaged producers can now receive up to a 95% guarantee against the loss of principal and interest on a loan, up from 90%.
Shiitake Mushroom School May 14th, 6:00 - 9:00pm
Penn State Extension, Lehigh County Office at 4184 Dorney Park Road, Allentown, PA 18104.
Bedford County Conservation Distrcit maintains a variety of no-till corn planters, drills, lime spreaders, etc. that are used in promoting no-till management and in assisting county farmers in transitioning to no-till, in renovating pastures, and improving soil quality. Information about the no-till equipment available to rent can be found here. For information about availability and rates for the equipment, call Cody Waltemire at 814-623-7900, ext. 128.
The PA Veteran Farming Project thanks Pittsburgh DAV Chapters 8 and 76 for their support of our Project efforts. We serve VA eligible active duty, veterans, Guard and Reserve, and their spouses. There is no charge for our services to eligible individuals.
Donations to the Project can be made by check payable to "Westmoreland Conservation District" with "Troops to Tractors" in the memo line. WCD is a tax exempt unit of sub-government, so your gift will be deductible to the full extent of the law. Mail to:
218 Donohoe Rd.,
Greensburg PA 15601.