Georgia Farmer of the Year

first_imgOrganic farmer Will Harris of White Oak Pastures in Bluffton, Ga., has been named the Georgia state winner of the 2013 Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern Farmer of the Year.Harris will represent the peach state in October at the Sunbelt Ag Expo, the nation’s largest agricultural exposition where one of nine Southeastern state winners will be named the overall winner for 2013.A multi-generational farmHarris has made great strides on the farm where his grandfather, Will Sr., once used a muledrawn wagon to deliver beef and pork to four general stores, a hotel and a boarding house. After World War II, Harris’ father, Will Jr., raised calves and shipped them to the Midwest for finishing on grain in feedlots.Today, the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences graduate runs the family farm his way. The genetics of his herd can be traced back to his grandfather’s cracker cattle, but now the animals (cows and chickens) are grass-fed and processed on the farm’s onsite, USDA-inspected processing facility. He believes the grass-fed system is better for the environment and the land. “My land is improved every year by the way we treat it,” he said. “We don’t use chemical fertilizers. We just plain don’t use chemicals on the land.”Harris believes his forefathers would be happy with the changes he’s made at White Oak Pastures. “My grandfather used to say, ‘If you take care of the land and the cows, they’ll take care of you.’ That certainly defines the way we run our farm today,” he said.From grain to grassIn 1995 he began switching his cattle from its traditional grain diet to a 100 percent forage diet. The result became White Oak Pastures grass-fed ground beef. “I’ve had UGA run fatty acid and lipid profiles on my beef, and they found that it’s high in the good fats, omega 3 and CLAs, and low in the saturated fats,” Harris said. “It tastes better, but that’s subjective. Honestly, a lot of high-end chefs have told me personally that they prefer grass-fed beef.”Harris said the farm had grass-fed beef and lamb customers who wanted pastured poultry. In response, he began to raise chickens, turkeys, geese, ducks and guineas. White Oak Pastures also raises egg-laying hens and grows certified organic vegetables.A ‘magical system’“We became fascinated with the Serengeti Rotational Grazing Model,” Harris said. “We already had the large ruminants (cattle) and the small ruminants (sheep). We needed the poultry to get it right. It’s a magical system for the land and the animals.” Harris takes pride in how his stock are treated. White Oak Pastures’ processing plants and systems were designed by legendary humane animal scientist Temple Grandin. “We treat our animals with dignity and respect all their lives. They’re never confined, and they’re never harvested in an inhumane manner,” he said. Harris also doesn’t use antibiotics or hormones on his farm.White Oak Pastures’ products are sold through grocery and food service distributors as well as directly to customers through their online store and on-farm store. Growing food for niche marketsSteve Brown, associate dean for UGA Extension, says Harris has been “extremely successful at understanding new opportunities and capitalizing on them.” “Agriculture in Georgia has always been extremely diverse. As consumers continue to demand new food products with the characteristics that are important to them, new niche markets are created, which Georgia farmers, like Will, can fill,” he said.Brian Cresswell, Early County Extension agent, says Harris has always been “forward thinking.” Cresswell nominated Harris for the award.“He understands what he’s doing and why he’s doing it. It’s nice to see any business run by generations of a family. Will has always been on the top of his game, from running a regular beef cattle operation to where he is now,” said Cresswell. Having worked in the county for more than 20 years, Cresswell sees first hand how Harris’ farm benefits the area. “A lot of folks come to the county just to see the operation and buy products from their store,” he said.Recognition, cash and apparelAs the Georgia state winner of the Swisher Sweets/Sunbelt Expo award, Harris will receive a $2,500 cash award and an expense paid trip to the Sunbelt Expo from Swisher International; a $500 gift certificate from the Southern States Cooperative; the choice of either $1,000 in PhytoGen cottonseed or a $500 donation to a designated charity from Dow AgroSciences; and a Columbia vest from Ivey’s Outdoor and Farm Supply.He is now eligible for the $15,000 cash award that will go to the overall winner. Other prizes for the overall winner, in addition to their state winnings, include the use of a Massey Ferguson tractor for a year from Massey Ferguson North America; a $500 gift certificate and a Heritage gun safe from the Southern States Cooperative; the choice of either $1,000 in PhytoGen cottonseed or a $500 donation to a designated charity from Dow AgroSciences; and a Columbia jacket from Ivey’s Outdoor and Farm Supply.Swisher International and the Sunbelt Expo are sponsoring the Southeastern Farmer of the Year awards for the 24th consecutive year. Swisher has contributed some $924,000 in cash awards and other honors to Southeastern farmers since the award was initiated in 1990.last_img read more

On credit union compliance: What’s coming in 2016

first_imgWe’ve almost reached the end of 2015, and it’s time to start looking ahead to the new year. What compliance challenges should you be prepping for? What new hurdles should your credit union be prepared to face?In 2015, credit union regulators focused on protections for credit union members, but we’re starting to see regulators shift their focus toward institutional rules—the items that ensure the safety and soundness of the institutions themselves.The following three areas, in particular, are likely to see increased scrutiny and change in the year ahead:Cybersecurity. At least 60 data breaches have occurred in the financial sector alone in 2015, compromising more than 5 million records, according to the Identity Theft Resource Center. As records continue to move online, and cyber theft becomes more sophisticated, regulators are increasingly looking at institutions’ cybersecurity measures, including infrastructure and documentation procedures. Additionally, the Federal Financial Institutions Examination Council released a cybersecurity assessment tool this summer that all credit unions may find benefit in using, even though this is currently optional. continue reading » 6SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblrlast_img read more

Faster business loans in your credit union

first_img 6SHARESShareShareSharePrintMailGooglePinterestDiggRedditStumbleuponDeliciousBufferTumblr For $860 million/74,000-member Seven Seventeen Credit Union, Warren, Ohio, offering superior service and products to its members is the top priority. When it comes to serving small business owners, superior service means speed. But finding ways to improve upon the commercial loan process is not easy.Since LaserPro® from D+H became part of its equation, Seven Seventeen CU has delivered loan closings more quickly and has gained a competitive edge by having the resources to provide members with the products they need.“Service is our No. 1 priority,” explains Brett Carnahan, VP/commercial lending officer for Seven Seventeen CU. “We use the tools and processes necessary, along with a strong desire to offer superior service to our members. LaserPro has been a big part of that equation for over 12 years.”Compliant Documents Speed Document Preparation“We have dramatically improved our closing turnaround for member business loans, eliminating up to six days from the process,” says Carnahan. “With compliant documents that are recognized throughout the financial industry, we are no longer subject to an attorney’s competing priorities at closing time for the vast majority of loans we engage. We have reduced document preparation from a five- to seven-day process to an average of one day.” continue reading »last_img read more

Sire Du Berlais makes winning return | Racing News

first_imgElliott said: “It was a good performance. Mark said he needed the whole length of the straight to get there – he wants three miles.“Obviously I’ll have to speak to Frank (Berry, owner’s racing manager) and JP, but I’d imagine the three-mile race in Leopardstown at Christmas would be the place to go with him now. He has no choice really now but to go for a Grade One.“He’s been a great little horse around the yard. The Stayers’ Hurdle would look the race for him long-term.”- Advertisement – Dual Cheltenham Festival hero Sire Du Berlais made a winning return to action in the Lismullen Hurdle at Navan.The JP McManus-owned eight-year-old has won the last two renewals of the Pertemps Final at the showpiece meeting in the Cotswolds for Gordon Elliott, but faced a step up in class and a drop in trip for this two-and-a-half-mile Grade Two.- Advertisement – Paddy Power cut Sire Du Berlais to 10-1 from 16-1 for the Stayers’ Hurdle at Cheltenham next March. The blinkered 9-2 chance was on the heels of the leaders rounding the home turn and responded to Mark Walsh’s urgings on the run-in to get up and beat long-time leader French Dynamite by half a length.Matthew Smith’s stable star Ronald Pump was the 9-4 favourite on his first start since filling the runner-up spot in the Stayers’ Hurdle at Cheltenham, and was not completely done with when crashing out at the final obstacle.Noel Meade’s Sixshooter finished third.- Advertisement – – Advertisement –last_img read more

FAO launches disease crisis center

first_img The campaign covers all of the country’s 40,000 elementary and secondary schools. The curriculum will help ensure that children understand what they can do to help prevent the spread of avian flu, such as washing their hands frequently and reporting sick or dead poultry. Oct 12, 2006 (CIDRAP News) – To speed emergency responses to avian influenza and other animal and plant diseases, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) inaugurated a new crisis management center (CMC) at its Rome headquarters today. If a suspected outbreak is reported, the crisis management center can dispatch experts anywhere in the world in less than 48 hours, the FAO said. The center can react quickly to emergencies involving plant pests or food safety, as well as diseases, officials said. The center, founded with the World Organization for Animal Health (OIE), is supported by advanced communication technology and will operate around the clock, 7 days a week, the FAO said in a press release. The center is staffed by up to 15 specialists and veterinarians who will continuously update and monitor disease information. Oct 12 FAO press releasehttp://www.fao.org/newsroom/en/news/2006/1000421/index.html Thailand has the third highest number of human H5N1 cases (25), and the disease has killed 17 people, including 11 children younger than 18. The United States donated $5.1 million and three veterinarians to the CMC; other donors include Germany, France, Sweden, Switzerland, Norway, Saudi Arabian, China, Greece, and Jordan. See also: Speed is of the essence in the international fight against avian flu, Diouf said. “Alert must be lighting quick. Reaction must be immediate in combating a disease, which can move across borders and continents terrifyingly fast.” Four million posters and pamphlets containing prevention and awareness messages will be distributed; elementary schools will receive 300,000 bars of soap. The campaign was produced by UNICEF and funded by Japan. Oct 11 UN press releasehttp://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=20215&Cr=bird&Cr1=flu Meanwhile, Thailand and the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF) launched a school-based campaign this week to protect children and their families from the spread of avian flu, according to a United Nations announcement yesterday. The CMC is headed by Dr Karin Schwabenbauer, Germany’s former chief veterinary officer. Dr Gary L. Brickler, from the US Department of Agriculture, is deputy director. Animal health emergency response will be handled by the FAO’s chief veterinary officer, Dr Joseph Domenech, and the FAO’s Emergency and Rehabilitation Division will handle the CMC’s operational support. “The CMC represents a significant leap forward in FAO’s ability to help member nations prevent and cope with disease outbreaks,” said Dr Jacques Diouf, director-general of the FAO, in the press release. Jul 14, 2006, CIDRAP News story “USDA, FAO to launch animal disease crisis center”last_img read more

What are limits on paying for silence?

first_imgIf someone is willing to pay thousands of dollars to keep someone quiet, would they be willing to pay to have allegations, true or false, made against some one who is a thorn in their side?Joseph GibsonBallston LakeMore from The Daily Gazette:EDITORIAL: Thruway tax unfair to working motoristsPolice: Schenectady woman tried to take car in Clifton Park hours after arrest, release in prior the…EDITORIAL: Find a way to get family members into nursing homesFoss: Should main downtown branch of the Schenectady County Public Library reopen?EDITORIAL: Beware of voter intimidation Categories: Letters to the Editor, Opinionlast_img

E-waste levels surge 20 percent in 5 years: UN

first_imgTopics : According to the report, Asia generated the greatest volume of e-waste in 2019, with 24.9 million tons, followed by the Americas (13.1 Mt) and Europe (12 Mt), while Africa and Oceania generated just 2.9 Mt and 0.7 Mt respectively.Europe had the highest e-waste figure per capita.To put the numbers into perspective, 53 million tons is substantially heavier than every adult in Europe put together, or as much as 350 cruise ships the size of the Queen Mary 2.It equates to more than seven kilograms of e-waste for every human on the planet.The UN warned that e-waste contained a number of toxic substances known to be harmful to human health.  “Substantially greater efforts are urgently required to ensure smarter and more sustainable global production, consumption, and disposal of electrical and electronic equipment,” said David Malone, rector at the United Nations University and UN under secretary general.  “This report contributes mightily to the sense of urgency in turning around this dangerous global pattern.” Humans discarded more than 50 million tons of electronic waste last year — an increase of 20 percent in just five years — making tech refuse the world’s fastest growing waste problem, the United Nations said Thursday.In its annual report on e-waste — tossed away smartphones, computers, white goods and electronic car parts — the UN said that materials worth more than $55 billion (50 billion euros) were being wasted every year.In 2019 only 17 percent of the year’s 53 million tons of e-waste was recycled, with the rest ending up in scrapheaps or landfill.center_img With its unreclaimed deposits of gold, silver, copper and platinum as well as highly-prized rare Earth metals, non-recycled e-waste means more must be mined to equip consumers with new products.The report’s authors blamed ever-shorter device lifespans and a lack of recycling infrastructure for the ballooning e-waste problem. “E-waste quantities are rising three times faster than the world’s population and 13 percent faster than the world’s GDP during the last five years,” said Antonis Mavropoulos, president of the International Solid Waste Association.”This sharp rise creates substantial environmental and health pressures and demonstrates the urgency to combine the fourth industrial revolution with circular economy.”last_img read more

Two Qatari LNG cargoes heading to Belgium

first_imgLNG World News Staff Image courtesy of Fluxys Belgium – P. HenderyckxThe Fluxys-operated Zeebrugge liquefied natural gas terminal in Belgium booked a pair of cargoes of LNG from Qatar. The shipping data shows the first of the two cargoes being transported onboard the 210,000-cbm Fraiha LNG carrier. The vessel is scheduled to dock at the terminal on April 30, the data shows.The second od the two cargoes is being transported onboard the 160,00-cbm Golar Tundra liquefied natural gas carrier. The vessel set off from Qatar’s Ras Laffan LNG complex on April 13 and is scheduled to dock at the Zeebrugge LNG facility on May 3.The Zeebrugge LNG terminal, that mainly imports LNG from Qatar, has an annual throughput capacity of nine billion cubic meters of natural gas.last_img

Evans ready to go – O’Neill

first_imgBanned Jonny Evans is set to make his return to football in Northern Ireland’s friendly against Scotland, according to boss Michael O’Neill. The Football Association suspended the 27-year-old Manchester United defender for six games and Newcastle’s Papiss Cisse for seven matches for a spitting incident during the Old Trafford side’s 1-0 win over the Magpies on March 4. Evans has served two matches but will get the chance to get the boots back on in the Vauxhall International challenge match at Hampden Park on Wednesday, March 25, before the crucial Euro Group F qualifier against Finland at Windsor Park the following Sunday. There was some surprise when Shane Ferguson was named in O’Neill’s 27-man squad. The Irishman was one of five Toon players who signed on loan for Rangers in the transfer window but he has yet to travel to Glasgow as he recovers from a knee injury. When informed of Ferguson’s inclusion, Gers interim-boss Stuart McCall said: “I find that amazing because he is registered to us but he’s not been here. “That has actually astounded me. From what I’ve been led to believe, we won’t see him at all this season.” However, O’Neill said: “Shane is injured at the moment so he’s probably an extreme doubt if I’m honest. “I had hoped he would be further along in his recovery. “He’s still at Newcastle United in terms of his rehab and that’s something I’ll have to decide on in the next two or three days whether he’s included or not. “I would have hoped he would have played for Rangers by this time. “He had a slight setback with his knee injury but in the next 24 to 48 hours I’ll have to decide whether it’s beneficial to include him.” Manchester United’s 19-year-old defender Paddy McNair is in line to make his senior debut. He was an unused substitute against Romania in November but with O’Neill set to rotate his squad in the first fixture, McNair can expect to add another landmark moment to his breakout season. Doncaster’s Luke McCullough is also included alongside veteran defenders Gareth McAuley, Aaron Hughes and Chris Baird, meaning Hull’s Alex Bruce again misses out. Brentford winger Stuart Dallas is another who may benefit from a run-out in Glasgow having returned to the squad. Dallas won his first and only cap against Wales in 2011’s Carling Nations Cup and withdrew from his previous call-up due to injury. Ferguson’s expected withdrawal could yet open the door for the absent Daniel Lafferty, who has been starved of first-team football at Burnley but has recently joined Rotherham on loan. Kyle Lafferty, who has three goals in four Euro 2016 qualifiers so far, leads the forward unit and will travel from Turkish outfit Caykur Rizespor. But there was no place for Martin Paterson, on loan with Major League Soccer franchise Orlando City. With regards the way he will approach the Scotland game, O’Neill said: “The priority is the Finland game, it’s as simple as that. “I’m not sure about experiment but it’s a time to look at one or two players who haven’t had the opportunity yet in the campaign and also players to get valuable game time.” Press Association O’Neill, speaking at the national stadium in Glasgow where he was helping to publicise the friendly against the Scots, revealed he has spoken to Evans and is more than confident the player is mentally attuned to play if required. He said: “Jonny hasn’t played international football for 18 months because of injury and he’s also currently serving a suspension. “He’ll welcome the opportunity to get some minutes given the importance of the (Finland) game on Sunday. “I spoke to him the day after the incident and after the decision as well. “He is fine and there will be no problems with that at all. “He is an excellent professional and he will be more than capable of coming and dealing with these games if he is asked to play. “He hasn’t played in the qualification for us yet, he’s been injured so it’s going to be great to have him back in the squad. “I’d have no concerns at all around his mental state in terms of being able to come into play at international level.” last_img read more

Flash FC, Kanuku Harpies win home-leg of RFA quarterfinals

first_imgTHE Kanuku Harpies males and the Flash FC females have registered wins in the first leg of their quarter-final clashes in the Fourth Rupununi Football Association (RFA) Champions League.On Saturday, the teams battled the Jaguars FC and Kanuku Harpies respectively at the Parishara Village Ground, in East- Central Rupununi.The male Harpies edged out the Jaguars FC 4-2, while Flash FC whipped the female Harpies 5-1.Neither the female Harpies nor the Jaguars had ever reached the quarterfinals of the league.Later this month, the sides will get a second change when they play the return leg of the competition.The female Harpies will travel to the Flash FC’s home in Yupukari Village on Saturday, May 25; the males will journey to the Jaguars FC home ground in Kaicumbay on the same day.The other second-round battles will also be held this month. Games are scheduled over the next two weekends (May 18 and 19 and on May 25 and 26), at venues to be named.Last evening, the last of the first-round quarterfinal games were scheduled to be played.last_img read more