WOOSTER, Ohio — Producers already reeling from falling milk prices and rising input prices are facing yet another challenge; this time in the form of groups determined to either change the way animal agriculture does business or put it out of business altogether, according to John Fitzpatrick, organization director for Ashland/Medina/Wayne County Farm Bureaus.
Fitzpatrick told producers and industry representatives attending the 2009 Wayne County Dairy Banquet March 23 that the Humane Society of the United States has targeted Ohio as their next state to pass legislation changing the way animal agriculture operates.
Fitzpatrick emphatically noted the Humane Society of the United States is not connected in any way with the local humane society.
Instead, the group is using its financial clout to gain support for its agenda with legislators who will have a major impact on the Ohio Department of Agriculture and push for more oversight of Ohio farms from the EPA.
“They are planning a major campaign with signs, TV spots and bulk mail to bring legislation that will divide animal agriculture,” he said. “Their ultimate goal is to convert the U.S. to vegetarianism.”
Fitzpatrick said all of agriculture needs to band together and tell their story to the public.
“You need to be willing to speak to the media, we all need to tell the same story,” he said. “You need to give the public the correct information to counteract the misinformation being presented by the other groups.”
Fitzpatrick urged farmers to be careful in their farming activities; not using practices that could give agriculture a black eye and carefully investigate potential employees before hiring them and giving them access to all areas of the farming operation.
During the banquet, producers were recognized for their accomplishments during the past year.
In the Ayrshire breed, Spring Run Farm had the top Ayrshire cow who at 5-3 produced 24,860 milk, 901 fat, 758 protein for an energy corrected milk value of 25,558 pounds of milk.
They also had the top Ayrshire herd with 17,236 pounds of milk, 638 pounds of fat and 551 pounds of protein (18,066 pounds of energy corrected milk).
Ro-La-Sue Dairy had the county’s low somatic cell count herds for both Ayrshire with 253,000 and Brown Swiss with 82,000.
Frankenburg Farm had the top Brown Swiss cow with 32,900 pounds of milk, 1,817 pounds of fat and 1,055 pounds of protein (42,306 pounds of energy corrected milk).
Ki-Ja-Mar Farm had the top Brown Swiss herd with 17,538 pounds of milk, 644 pounds of fat and 568 pounds of protein (18,416 pounds of energy corrected milk).
Brook Hollow Farm had the top Guernsey with 15,320 pounds of milk, 737 pounds of fat and 534 pounds of protein.
Roy Mangun had the top Jersey cow with 25,863 pounds of milk, 1,119 pounds of fat and 881 pounds of protein (29,291 pounds of energy corrected milk), the top Jersey herd in the county with 19,067 pounds of milk, 912 pounds of fat and 682 pounds of protein (23,260 pounds of energy corrected milk) and the low somatic cell count herd for Jerseys with 113,000.
Top Holstein herd
Elmer Steiner had the top Holstein herd with 29,612 pounds of milk, 1,044 pounds of fat and 875 pounds of protein (29,896 pounds of energy corrected milk), while Arthur Amstutz had the low somatic cell count herd for Holsteins with 107,000 and Stoll Farms had the high Holstein cow for production with 30,507 pounds of milk, 2,471 pounds of fat and 933 pounds of protein (48,693 pounds of energy corrected milk).
High Lifetime Production awards went to Carmony Farm, Miley Holsteins, Four Winds Farm, Rick and Judy Wolf, Roy Mangun, Steinhurst, Toppglenn, Rupp-Vue, RayGor Farm, Schirm Jerseys, Dennis Wise, Russ and Cheryl King and Tom Noyes.
Wayne County Junior Dairy Princess crowned at meeting
WOOSTER, Ohio — Allison Janes of Wooster was crowned as the 2009 Wayne County Junior Dairy Princess during the Wayne County Dairy Service Unit’s annual meeting.
The year 2009 marks the 40th anniversary of the Wayne County Dairy Promoters and the Wayne County Dairy Princess contest.
Janes, 15, is the daughter of Ken and Kaye Janes and is a student at Triway High School. She is a member of the Ohio Junior Holstein Association, active in 4-H and FFA, band, science club and plays basketball and softball.
She shows dairy heifers and cows on the county and district levels.
Tiffany Firebaugh of Wooster was named as the first runner-up, while Hannah Rennecker was selected as the alternate.
Firebaugh, 14, is the daughter of Harold and Elaine Firebaugh and attends Triway Junior High School. She is active in 4-H and shows Brown Swiss and Ayrshires, beef steers, feeder calves and carries dog projects and still projects.
At school she is active in band, choir, is a peer tutor and on the honor roll.
Rennecker is the daughter of Brian and Heidi Rennecker of Smithville. She is an honor roll student at Smithville Middle School and is a member of the Smithville Shepherds 4-H club.
Laura Gordon was named as the 2009 Outstanding Wayne County Dairy Youth. Gordon, a student at the Ohio State University majoring in agricultural engineering, has been active in Dairy Quiz Bowl, the Dairy Management contest at the Pennsylvania All American Dairy Show and 4-H and FFA dairy judging teams.
In June, Gordon, along with her brother, Paul, Eileen Gress and Brandon Meier, all members of Triway FFA, along with their adviser Dale Sidle, will represent the U.S. at an international judging contest in Scotland.
These four individuals received a $500 donation from the Wayne County Dairy Service Unit to help defray the cost of their trip.
Katie Ladrach and Kyle Schirm were selected to receive the 2009 Dairy Service Unit Scholarship.
Ladrach is the daughter of Bob and Mary Ladrach of Wooster and will be attending OSU-ATI majoring in animal science. She has exhibited dairy projects at the county and state fairs and Spring Dairy Expo.
Schirm is the son of Paul and Dawn Schirm of West Salem and will be attending VPI in Blacksburg, Va. He has been active in 4-H, FFA and Jersey Youth activities, served on Junior Fairboard and as a camp counselor.