Ag report: May 31, 2013

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Feasibility study for meat plant seeks producers’ input


The Kentucky Center for Agriculture and Rural Development and UK Cooperative Extension agents are seeking in put from the public for a feasibility study they are conducting about the potential for constructing an all-species meat processing facility in Campbellsburg.

Factors that influence the feasibility of such a facility include the number of farmers who are currently direct-marketing meat products from their farm. This could include freezer beef, pork and poultry sold off the farm or at a farmers’ market, value-added products such as jerky and sausage or any other meat product a farmer is having processed to sell.

Also influencing the feasibility would be the number of producers who would use a local meat processing facility to butcher animals for home consumption, increase their current direct-marketing business, or develop a direct-marketing business if a local facility were to be available.

If you are willing to share your input regarding the need for a local all-species meat processing facility, please complete the online survey found at https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/82Z3SQB or call Shelby County Extension Agent for Agriculture and Natural Resources Corinne Belton at 502-633-4593.


Sites, event devoted to industrial hemp

A new industrial hemp Web site tells how the plant got started in Kentucky, how Kentucky came to be the nation’s leading producer, and what’s being done to bring hemp back to the commonwealth. The Industrial Hemp Facts page is the most recent addition to the Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s www.kyagr.com. It provides users quick facts about industrial hemp and links to other hemp sites.

The launch of the Industrial Hemp Facts page comes on the eve of the fourth annual Hemp History Week, which starts Monday and continues through June 9. This is a campaign to raise awareness of the benefits of industrial hemp and rally support for legalizing hemp production.
To find out more about Hemp History Week, visit www.hemphistoryweek.com

Top ag-using teacher sought 

Kentucky Farm Bureau is searching the state for 2013 Excellence in Ag Literacy Award nominees. The award, presented annually by KFB during its annual meeting, was established to recognize and reward teachers who excel in their efforts to incorporate agricultural concepts throughout their core academic studies.

“The real-life application of agriculture in the classroom can significantly aid teachers as they seek ways to engage and maintain student interest in core subject matter,” Scott Christmas, KFB’s Director of Women and Agricultural Education, said in a press release. “We want to honor teachers who do this well and do this often.”

All certified pre-kindergarten through 12th-grade teachers who are engaged in integrating agricultural concepts into non-agricultural curriculum are eligible. Nomination forms with guidelines and evaluation criteria for the Excellence in Ag Literacy Award can be downloaded at kyfb.com/federation. All applications must be received at the KFB state office by Nov. 1. The winner will be announced Dec. 6.


Horse Council official retires

The Kentucky Horse Council’s board of directors announced the retirement of Ginny Grulke, executive director of the council since 2005. Grulke will retire July 1, 2013, but she will assist with the transition of the new executive director and continue to volunteer on some of the many projects in which she has an integral part.

Grulke has been known as the "face of the Kentucky Horse Council" to many industry groups, Kentucky state government agencies, trail and saddle clubs, legislators and others in the Kentucky horse industry. She has led KHC to become a provider of industry education and programs to improve the lives of Kentucky horse owners and the horses themselves.


Biodiesel in tractor pulls

The National Tractor Pullers Association will begin allowing the use of 100 percent biodiesel, in all diesel pulling classes for this season. This is the seventh season the soy checkoff has partnered with the NTPA to promote the use of biodiesel to pulling fans, including many farmers, truck drivers and other diesel users.

A study funded by the state soy checkoff board in Minnesota and conducted by United Pullers of Minnesota found using biodiesel in pulling competition can provide a 4 percent increase in torque and horsepower.

Biodiesel is known as America’s Advanced Biofuel because it reduces greenhouse-gas emissions by at least 50 percent compared with petroleum diesel. It offers excellent horsepower, mileage and octane and adds as much as 65 percent lubricity to an engine.


Bulletin board

  • The deadline for responding to the 2012 Census of Agriculture is today. Farmers and ranchers also can return their forms by mail or online by visiting www.agcensus.usda.gov. Federal law requires a response from everyone who receives the census form and requires NASS to keep visit www.agcensus.usda.gov or call 1-888-4AG-STAT.
  • The Spencer County horse show will begin at 6 p.m. Saturday and continue July 6, Aug. 3, Sept. 7 and Oct. 5 at the fairgrounds. Gate admission is $2, and 6-year-olds and younger are free. For more information, contact Frank Rearden at 502-232-5138, Preston McDonald at 502-422-0176, Connie McDonald at 502-232-0739, Mary Lisby at 502-738-5388, Mae Rearden at 502-991-1505 or John Shouse at 502-437-7083.
  • Shelby County Master Gardeners and Shelby County Cooperative Extension will host a garden workday at the McClure Gardens at the entrance to Clear Creek Park from 9 a.m. until noon on June 8. Anyone willing to pull weeds, spread mulch, trim or mow is welcome to come join. It is also a good opportunity to ask knowledgeable gardeners about plant care and selection. For more information, call Walt Reichert at 633-4593.
  • The Shelby County Fair will be June 14-24 at the Shelby County Fairgrounds on Midland Trail in Shelbyville.
  • The Shelby County Farmers' Market is open from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays through October at the Shelby County Fairgrounds’ Coots Barn at 1513 Midland trail. For more information, you can find and like the market organizers on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/Shelby-County-Kentucky-Farmers-Market/173755406108757?fref=ts.
  • Shelby County 4-H Camp Enrollment forms are available at the extension office or printed from http://ces.ca.uky.edu/shelby. Camp Dates will be July 9-12. Space will be filled on a first come, first serve basis. For more information, call 633-4593.
  • The 110th annual World’s Championship Horse Show will be Aug. 18-24 at Freedom Hall in Louisville. Tickets go on sale at 10 a.m. June 24. Prices range from $14 to 425, based on the date and the session.


The Kentucky Ag Report is compiled weekly from news releases distributed by Keeton Communications, the Kentucky Press News Service.