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Agriculture

  • Reese takes over as ag agent

    Brett Reese is getting back to his roots – not his plant roots but his farm roots.

    Reese grew up on a farm in Scott County and his father was the Extension agent for agriculture there. Now Reese, who hired on as Shelby County's horticulture agent in 2005, is the ag agent here.

  • New life for an old machine

    You would expect that a piece of farm machinery that had been sitting in a barn unused for more than 30 years would be long ossified into a nearly worthless piece of junk metal.

    But a couple of local farmers this summer brought back to life an old combine that was headed for the scrap heap.

  • Shelby County farmers rode ups and downs of the ag economy in '08

    While the general economy went into a tailspin in 2008, the nation's and the county's agriculture sector rode a roller coaster. Commodity prices hit delirious highs and gut wrenching lows -- sometimes within the span of a few months.

    While some farmers enjoyed record setting prices in 2008 -- at least for a few months -- all farmers had to endure higher input costs, especially of fuel and nitrogen fertilizer. Diesel fuel topped $5 a gallon for a period of a few months in late summer.

  • Southern States Shelbyville distributes assets

    A check in the mail is always a good thing. Two checks are even better. Two unexpected checks are better yet.

    Members and patrons of the Southern States Shelbyville Cooperative got checks in the mail last week as the local cooperative dissolved its assets. Last June, the Shelbyville cooperative voted to go out of business and join the larger, regional Southern States Cooperative. The change took effect July 1, and co-op officials marked a grand reopening in mid-September.

  • Schools' program helps migrant youth, farmers

    A USDA program administered by Shelby County Public Schools can help both the children of migrant workers as well as the farmers they are working for. Problem is, few farmers know about it.

    The Migrant Education Program (MEP) is designed to serve children of agricultural workers who have been in the county less than three years. Those eligible for the program can be up to 22 years of age, but they, or their parents, must work in agriculture. The workers do not have to belong to a particular ethnic group as long as they work on farms or nurseries.