GFB Commodity Conference: Speakers upbeat about ag
GEORGIA FARM BUREAU
Oct. 31 GFB Hay Contest deadline
Use caution when working with farm equipment
GFB YF&R members enjoy Leadership Conference YF&R contest winners named
Vol. 83 No. 3
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GFB funds ag research
GFB welcomes new hires
page 14 pages 6 & 7
GFB YF&R Conference focuses on ag advocacy pages 8 & 9
Greens, Jackson, & Lance win GFB YF&R competitive events Congratulations to the 2021 GFB YF&R contest winners: Steven & Tara Green, Cleve Jackson & Jessica Lance.
pages 10 & 11
GFB Commodity Conference speakers upbeat about ag
Departments page 4
View from the Field page 5
Public Policy pages 24 & 25
pages 26 & 27
GFB Hay Contest: Oct. 31 entry deadline
Farmtastic Family Fun Day brings ag book to life Ga. illustrator Ward Jenkins draws kids to ag
pages 16 & 17
Follow safety precautions around PTOs & hydraulics to prevent farm accidents Farmers need to exercise safety measures when working with equipment powered by PTOs.
GFB honors Ga. Jr. National Livestock Grand Champions
GFB photo contest winners focus on ag
GFB News Staff Kenny Burgamy
Jennifer Whittaker Jay Stone
Payton Butler Graphic Designer Logan Thomas Photographer
FOLLOW US ON THESE PLATFORMS @GAFARMBUREAU
On The Cover: GFB YF&R members enjoy fellowship at Leadership Conference. Photo by Logan Thonas
Ga. Foundation for Agriculture page 29
Ag in the Classroom
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View from the Field Tom McCall, GFB President Many of you know I had an accident this spring baling hay. It was a Saturday afternoon, and we were two to three hours behind schedule when the baler twine came loose out of one of the needle arms on my square baler. I got down on the ground to rethread the twine without turning off the tractor or the power take off (PTO). I knew better, but it was supposed to rain on Monday, and I was in a hurry. I reached up into the baler chamber to get the twine to rethread the needles. About the time I reached up, the baler tripped, and the needle arms caught my right arm and hand. When I pulled my arm out it looked like an “S.” I had to have surgery on my broken arm, wrist, and hand. Thankfully, I received wonderful care at OrthoGeorgia in Macon from Dr. Waldo Floyd III, and I am healing well. Jane and I have really appreciated the calls and emails from everyone checking on me.
Don’t be like me. If you’re about to work on a piece of equipment that’s running off a power take off, turn the tractor off or at least the PTO, so you don’t end up with a big cast and plates and screws in your arm. Sometimes being in a hurry doesn’t pay. It can come back to haunt you if you don’t take an extra 15 seconds to do something you know you should do. Farm safety is something we all need to be conscious of whether it’s not hitting a ditch in the field, installing a tractor roll over bar, or not working on running equipment. An accident can only take a second to happen. To all my farming friends, my message is simple. Slow down a little bit, be careful. My family is the most important thing in my life, and I know yours is to you. We all need to practice safety precautions to make sure we are around for our families.
GFB President Tom McCall with hand surgeon Dr. Waldo Floyd III | Photo by Logan Thomas
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News GEORGIA FARM BUREAU
OFFICERS President TOM McCALL, Elbert Co. 1st Vice President and South Georgia Vice President DANIEL JOHNSON, Pierce Co. Middle Georgia Vice President ROBERT FOUNTAIN JR., Emanuel Co. North Georgia Vice President BERNARD SIMS, Catoosa Co. General Counsel DUKE GROOVER Chief Financial Officer, Corp. Treasurer & GFBMIC Exec. VP DAVID JOLLEY Chief Administrative Officer & Corp. Secretary JON HUFFMASTER Asst. Corp. Secretary & Senior Counsel JEANNA FENNELL Asst. Corp. Treasurer & Sr. Director of Accounting RACHEL MOSELY DIRECTORS FIRST DISTRICT: Bill Bryan, Chattooga Co.; Wesley Hall, Forsyth Co.; SECOND DISTRICT: Bobby Gunter, Lumpkin Co.; Russ Moon, Madison Co.;THIRD DISTRICT: George Chambers, Carroll Co.; Nora Goodman, Paulding Co.; FOURTH DISTRICT: Skeetter McCorkle, McDuffie Co.; Marvin Ruark, Morgan Co.; FIFTH DISTRICT: Matt Bottoms, Pike Co.; Leighton Cooley, Crawford Co.; SIXTH DISTRICT: James Malone, Laurens Co.; James Emory Tate, Jeff Davis Co.; SEVENTH DISTRICT: Gary Bell, Evans Co.; Ben Boyd, Screven Co.; EIGHTH DISTRICT: Scotty Raines, Turner Co.; Don Wood, Wilcox Co.; NINTH DISTRICT: Lucius Adkins, Baker Co.; Paul Shirah, Mitchell Co.; TENTH DISTRICT: David Lee, Bacon Co.; Lamar Vickers, Berrien Co.; YOUNG FARMER CHAIRMAN: Will Godowns, Pike Co.; WOMEN’S COMMITTEE CHAIR: Heather Cabe, Franklin Co. ADVERTISING POLICY All advertising accepted subject to publisher’s approval. Advertisers must assume liability for content of their advertising. Publisher maintains right to cancel advertising for non-payment or reader complaint about advertiser service or products. Publisher does not accept per-order, political or alcoholic beverage ads, nor does publisher prescreen or guarantee advertiser service or products. Publisher assumes no liability for products or services advertised in the Georgia Farm Bureau News. For advertising rates and information, contact Wendy McFarland at 334-652-9080 or firstname.lastname@example.org. Georgia Farm Bureau News was established in 1937. Copyright 2021 by the Georgia Farm Bureau Federation. Printed by Panaprint, Macon, Georgia.
Georgia Farm Bureau News
Public Policy Update
County Farm Bureaus essential to policy development process By Katie Duvall Georgia Farm Bureau represents the needs of Georgia’s farmers in state and national legislative arenas. GFB is unique in its approach to tackling our state’s agricultural policy issues due to its member-led, grassroots nature, as embodied by the organization’s policy development process. GFB’s Public Policy team uses the organization’s annual policy book to guide its support or opposition of particular bills in the state legislature and Congress. The policies GFB’s Policy Development (PD) Committee pass during their fall meetings are considered by the GFB voting delegates and are submitted to the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) voting delegates.
Photo by Logan Thomas GFB’s PD Committee consists of the GFB Board of Directors, GFB’s 20 Commodity Advisory Committee (CAC) chairmen, GFB’s members of AFBF Issue Advisory Committees (IAC), and 30 county Farm Bureau presidents. The number of members on the committee may vary from year to year, but the committee always contains Farm Bureau
members from each of GFB’s ten districts with a wide variety of production and agribusiness expertise. The 2021 PD Committee, chaired by GFB First Vice President Daniel Johnson of Pierce County, includes 76 individuals from 62 counties. The committee reviews submissions from two sources – the GFB Commodity Conference held each August and directly from county Farm Bureaus. At the commodity conference, each of the 20 CACs reviews policy sections for its commodity in both the GFB and AFBF policy books. CACs are encouraged to add new policy that is not currently covered and amend or delete existing policy that may no longer be relevant. Most policy resolutions submitted by county Farm Bureaus reflect broader issues impacting farmers in their communities or on their farms in the past year. Many counties hold their own policy development meetings to develop their annual submissions. The 2021 Policy Development resolution submission period closed on Sept. 3. The PD Committee will meet on Oct. 4 and Nov. 2 to review this year’s submissions. The final draft of policies the committee approves will be presented to the GFB voting delegates at the GFB annual meeting on Jekyll Island Dec. 7. Federal policies that are moved forward by the voting delegates will be submitted to the AFBF Resolutions Committee, which takes a similar committee-reviewed structure the second week in December before heading to the 2022 AFBF Annual Convention in Atlanta. GFB did not hold a policy development process in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We thank county Farm Bureaus for participating and reconnecting to the policy development process. Our organization may be 84 years strong, but it is only because of the grassroots support and engagement of our membership that we will continue to thrive for future generations of Georgia farmers.
Katie Duvall is GFB’s advocacy and policy development coordinator. She may be reached at email@example.com or 478.474.0679, ext. 5217.
Georgia Farm Bureau News
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GFB YF&R Conference focuses on ag advocacy By Jennifer Whittaker
Fellowship was a big part of the GFB YF&R Conference. | Photo by Logan Thomas Young farmers and ranchers from across the state met on Jekyll Island July 14-17, for Georgia Farm Bureau’s YF&R Leadership Conference. The conference taught farmers and ag professionals between the ages of 18 and 35 how to advocate for agriculture and gave insight into how Farm Bureau advocates for farmers. GFB President Tom McCall shared the experience he and his wife, Jane, had as members of the YF&R Program and encouraged the young farmers attending the conference to take home the things they learned at the event to serve their county Farm Bureaus. “The Young Farmers and Ranchers Program means a lot to me and Jane. Y’all are the lifeblood of this organization,” McCall said. “I hope each and every one of you learned something you will take home and share. I’d like to see some of you serving on your county Farm Bureau
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boards and on the GFB Board and in the state legislature.” GFB Leadership Development Coordinator Breanna Berry encouraged attendees to share what they learned at the event with their county Farm Bureaus and to connect with their local Farm Bureaus. Conference attendees were surveyed at the event to get input for future YF&R events.
Don’t react defensively South Dakota cattle rancher, Beef Daily blogger, and children's book author Amanda Radke encouraged farmers to engage with consumers to share the positive things about how their food is grown. Radke has spent the last 15 years pushing back against animal rights and environmental activists who attack livestock agriculture, but says she thinks
Amanda Radke | Photo by Logan Thomas farmers and ranchers can make better traction to dispel ag myths by posting on social media the positive things they are doing on the farm to care for their animals. “Don’t react defensively when consumers ask questions about something negative they’ve heard about farming,” Radke said. “If you tell someone you’re a dairy farmer or raise beef cows and the consumer asks, ‘So you raise cows that produce methane that is destroying the ozone layer?’ – Don’t respond defensively! Remember that we all only understand what we’re exposed to on a regular basis and most consumers don’t have a basic understanding of livestock production.” Using Radke’s advice, a good response to this scenario might be to answer, “Did you know animal agriculture contributes less than 3% of U.S. greenhouse gas emissions? Research at Oxford University and the University of California, Davis has shown
Georgia Farm Bureau News
as long as U.S. dairy and cattle producers have total constant herd numbers or even total decreasing herd numbers, they are not adding additional methane to the atmosphere.” Radke shared how talking to a Wall Street stockbroker in 2012 at an airport led to him contacting her a few weeks later to get a rancher’s perspective on lean finely textured beef when ABC News ran its “pink slime” story. Her NYC friend contacted her again last year during the COVID-19 pandemic when beef was hard to find to learn how he could buy beef straight from a cattle producer.
Don’t berate others’ views Nelson Powell, a North Carolina hog farmer and relations manager with Rabobank, encouraged farmers to look at everyday interactions with their nonfarming friends, neighbors and family members as an opportunity to share what, how and why farmers do the things they do to raise their livestock and grow their crops. “We’ve got to stop thinking it’s someone else’s responsibility to advocate for agriculture. It’s not always fun, but it’s beneficial to us as farmers,” Powell said. To increase the chances that people will ask him questions about farming, Powell has placed a hog sticker that says NC Farmer on the back of his RV and wears a pig lapel pin. When talking with people who have an opposing view of agriculture, Powell encourages farmers to resist the temptation to berate their beliefs because it will alienate them and keep them from hearing what you have to say about farming. “You’ve got to realize that you are both on the same level playground, like a balanced seesaw,” Powell said. “If you berate someone’s value’s or elevate your beliefs, it lowers them like a seesaw to the point that you are diagonally opposite each other.” Powell also encourages farmers to remember that what you think you're
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saying may not be what the other person will hear. Powell shared an entertaining story of traveling in Australia with a co-worker. Their Uber driver asked them what brought them to Australia. The co-worker said they were there with Rabobank, but the driver heard, “We’re here to rob a bank,” and stopped the car to leave them. Think about phrases you use to describe what you do around the farm and if there’s a better way to explain it to a consumer.
Ag policy updates Members of GFB’s Public Policy team shared how they are advocating for Georgia agriculture. GFB National Policy Counsel Tripp Cofield discussed the Infrastructure Investment & Jobs Act (H.R. 3684). After the conference, the Senate passed the bill on Aug. 10 with a bipartisan vote of 6930. The Senate bill provides $1.2 trillion for infrastructure projects over 8 years with almost $550 billion in new spending over the next 5 years. It invests $110 billion in U.S. roads and bridges, $65 billion for broadband, and $17.3 billion for ports and inland waterways. The Senate package does not pay for the infrastructure projects with tax increases or changes to the stepped-up basis that determines how inherited assets are valued for tax purposes. The Senate’s legislation has been sent to the House where the timeline and prospects are less clear. House Speaker Nancy Pelosi has indicated the House won’t consider the Senate infrastructure bill until the Senate considers a $3.5 trillion budget reconciliation bill that includes President Biden's childcare, education and healthcare priorities. The bill includes proposed tax law changes to finance it. The partisan reconciliation bill being drafted by the House and Senate committees in early September includes changes to stepped-up basis. Visit www.gfb.
ag/AFBFstepupbasisanalysis to learn how stepped-up basis allows American farm and small business owners to pass their operations to their heirs without forcing them to sell land or other assets to cover the taxes. GFB Advocacy & Policy Development Coordinator Katie Duvall made the case for GFB members to support the organization’s legislative activities with some eye-opening voting statistics: 1) As of 2019, 60% of Georgia’s then 10.6 million population lived in Metro Atlanta. 2) The following counties have the highest number of registered voters: Fulton, Gwinnett, DeKalb, Cobb, Chatham & Clayton – all counties where voters have little understanding of agriculture. Duvall encouraged the young farmers to subscribe to GFB’s Legislative Reports, listen to the Growing On Podcast and participate in future “I Farm. I Vote.” campaigns designed to educate candidates and voters about ag issues.
If I Can… Canadian farmer and motivational speaker Chris Koch, who was born without arms or legs, encouraged the group to have a positive mindset. He attributes growing up on a farm and his family for giving him his “I can do anything,” attitude for life. Koch encourages parents and farmers to give their children and employees room to learn how to do things on their own. “Push yourself outside your comfort zone,” Koch said. “All those things you dream about doing - DO them.” Koch says our minds and attitude are the biggest obstacles we have to overcome. “My biggest struggles are when I let the six inches of space between my ears get in my way, not because I don’t have arms and legs,” Koch said. “We’re all battling something. Be grateful for the things you do have instead of focusing on the things you don’t.”
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Greens, Jackson & Lance win GFB YF&R competitive events The Young Farmers & Ranchers contests were one of the hightlights of Georgia Farm Bureau’s YF&R Leadership Conference held in July. YF&R members from across the state competed for state titles in the GFB Achievement Award, Discussion Meet, and Excellence in Agriculture Award competitions. All three contests are open to GFB members between the ages of 18 and 35. Congratulations to Steven and Tara Green, Cleve Jackson and Jessica Lance for taking top honors in the three contests. Each of these state winners will represent Georgia at the 2022 American Farm Bureau Federation Convention in Atlanta in January.
YF&R ACHIEVEMENT AWARD FINALISTS
From left, Colt & LeAnna Hart, with children Briar, Jolee, Laila & Sage, were finalists for the GFB YF&R Achievement Award while Tara & Steven Green, with daughter, Hadley, won the award. | Photo by Jennifer Whittaker
Steven and Tara Green, of Spalding County, won the GFB Achievement Award, which recognizes farming and leadership efforts among young farmers and ranchers who earn the majority of their income from farming. The Greens raise broilers and cattle, grow hay and you-pick flowers, and sell and spread chicken litter. Steven is vice president of the Spalding County Farm Bureau (SCFB) and chairs the GFB Poultry Commodity Committee. Tara has served on the SCFB YF&R, Women’s Leadership and Promotion & Education Committees since 2014. As the GFB Achievement Award winners, the Greens received $500 cash, a John Deere ATV, and an expense-paid trip to the 2022 AFBF Convention in Atlanta. Colt and LeAnna Hart, of Franklin County, who were finalists for the achievement award, raise broilers, beef cows and hay and stocker calves. Colt is the Franklin County Farm Bureau (FCFB) YF&R Chairman and serves on the GFB Beef Commodity Committee. LeAnna serves on the FCFB Women’s Leadership Committee. The Harts received a $500 prize
GFB EXCELLENCE IN AG Jessica Lance, of Morgan County, won the GFB Excellence in Agriculture Award. This award recognizes an individual or couple for their involvement in Farm Bureau and agriculture, and their leadership ability. Ideal candidate(s) for this award do not make the majority of their income from farming, however, the award is not solely based on the applicant(s) occupation.
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Lance grew up working on her parents’ produce farm in South Carolina. After teaching school for two years, she returned to the family farm to manage the family’s agricultural trucking business. This experience led Lance to start her own logistics company in 2017 that hauls raw grains from farms to processors, and livestock feed to feed mills and farmers. Her company, The Go Ag Group,
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also hauls fertilizers, biosolids and landscape products. Lance and her husband, Brian, started a Red Angus cow-calf operation in 2019. She is an active member of the Morgan County Farm Bureau YF&R Committee for which she has served as treasurer since 2017. As the state winner, Lance received $500 cash, a John Deere ATV, and an expense-paid trip to the 2022 AFBF Convention. Brian Fleming of Hart County and Ashley White, then of North Fulton County, were finalists for the Excellence in Agriculture Award. Each received $500 cash. Fleming is assistant farm manager of PTL Agriculture, LLC., his family’s farm that grows soybeans, wheat, milo/grain, sorghum, corn, oats and hay; and raises cattle. Fleming grew up working on the family farm and today has responsibilities for just about every aspect of the farm. He has chaired the Hart County Farm Bureau YF&R Committee since 2014 and grew the county’s YF&R program from just himself to its current membership of about 35. He regularly visits local schools to teach students about agriculture and has served on the GFB YF&R Committee since 2019. Ashley White grew up working on her family’s cattle ranch and horse boarding facility in Florida and competing in various equine competitions including barrel racing, rodeo, and dressage, which she still competes in. Having grown up in FFA and 4-H, it was natural for White to become an ag education teacher. She taught seven years in Florida and the past four years at Milton High School in North Fulton County. White has been active in Farm Bureau in
From left, Jessica Lance, Brian Fleming & Ashley White were the top finalists for the GFB YF&R Excellence in Agriculture Award. Lance won the event. | Photo by Logan Thomas both her home state of Florida and in North Fulton County Farm Bureau (NFCFB). She has served as a NFCFB director since 2017, as NFCFB YF&R Chair in 2018-19 and as NFCFB president from 2019 until she and her husband, Ryan, moved back to Florida in late July where she will continue teaching ag education.
The Top Four finalists in the GFB YF&R Discussion Meet Competition were: from left, Willie Sizemore, Cleve Jackson, Emily Leonard & Will Cabe. Jackson won the event. | Photo by Jennifer Whittaker Cleve Jackson, of Floyd County, prevailed over 16 other competitors from 16 counties, to win the GFB YF&R Discussion Meet. This event is designed to mimic a committee meeting in which individuals seek solutions to ag issues. In the Final Four
Georgia Farm Bureau News
round of the discussion meet, Jackson and the other finalists: Will Cabe of Franklin County; Emily Leonard of Echols County; and Willie Sizemore of Lee County; discussed how Farm Bureau can improve its effectiveness at recruiting YF&R members and increasing participation in YF&R programs. Jackson, received $500, a John Deere ATV and an expense-paid trip to the 2022 AFBF Convention. Jackson is a sales representative for Elanco Animal Health’s poultry products and runs a commercial cow/calf operation. Cabe is a poultry, cattle, hay, goat and sheep producer who is a past chairman of the GFB YF&R Committee. Leonard, who was the top collegiate competitor in the discussion meet, is a rising senior at the UGA College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences (CAES) where she is majoring in agricultural communications. She will represent GFB in the AFBF YF&R Collegiate Discussion Meet next winter at the AFBF YF&R Conference. Sizemore is a recent graduate of the UGA CAES where he majored in ag communications. The three finalists each received $350.
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2 0 21 G E O R G I A FA R M B U R E A U
Commodity conference speakers upbeat about agriculture
By Jay Stone and Jennifer Whittaker
Georgia Farm Bureau held its 2021 Commodity Conference at the UGA Tifton Campus Aug. 12. Speakers gave members of the organization’s 20 commodity advisory committees updates on a variety of ag issues and attendees had a chance to talk to UGA ag researchers about projects they are conducting to help farmers. GFB kicked off its policy development process as the committees reviewed the organization's state and federal policy pertaining to their specific commodities.
Farmers should vote & vax Georgia’s ag economy should remain stable according to State Fiscal Economist Jeffrey Dorfman. He said Georgia’s overall economy has fared relatively well since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic. Dorfman, a UGA professor of agricultural and applied economics, emphasized that farmers need to vote and get vaccinated. “Elections are important,” Dorfman said. “If you want to know what’s going to affect the type of regulations you’re going to face in farming, if you don’t want that ditch on your farm to become a water of the United States again, then you’ve got to vote in 2022 and 2024.”
He also encouraged Georgians to get the COVID-19 vaccine. “The number one thing you can do is get vaccinated, wear a mask and socially distance,” Dorfman said. “If we can stay healthy, then our economy is going to go gangbusters, and we’re going to be fine.” Dorfman said farmers could expect continued low interest rates, slight decreases in energy prices and continued “mid-level” commodity prices. Dorfman pointed to key indicators as gauges for the state’s economy since March 2020 when the pandemic hit. Thanks to federal stimulus payments and increased unemployment benefits, personal income
has remained steady, and people have saved money. Americans went from saving approximately 7% of their income to about a third and have amassed $6 trillion in savings. Georgians have about $200 billion in savings. Dorfman said full return to normal will take time because hiring and training employees takes time. This is complicated by workers switching jobs. Filling one job leaves another vacant.
Ag has great conservation story Agriculture’s conservation story, American Farm Bureau Senior Director of Congressional Relations Andrew Walmsley said, is one of which farmers should be proud. Farmers have been doing their part to conserve natural resources, and as the climate change policy discussion continues, agriculture has a seat at an important table.
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Since the late 1940s, American agriculture has increased its production 287% while farm inputs have remained relatively flat. Walmsley said factoring in agriculture’s small share of greenhouse gas emissions and its sizeable contribution to carbon capture, ag absorbs more greenhouse gases than it produces.
“As we go forward in policy discussions or private market developments, how do you shrink [emissions] while increasing [carbon capture] and make sure we remain sustainable?” Walmsley said. “For me, sustainable for agriculture is economic viability. It does us no good to run anybody out of business.”
Georgia Farm Bureau News
He said there are more than 140 million stakeholder organizations. The alliance acres in the U.S. enrolled in conservation developed a set of recommendations to programs under the 2018 farm bill, equal to guide the development of federal climate the total land area of California and New policy, including the Growing Climate York combined. Solutions Act passed by the U.S. Senate and “It’s those type of programs, voluntary and under consideration in the U.S. House. incentive-based, that will make us successful “We were trying figure out how to in this climate debate going forward,” shape policy in Washington that benefits Walmsley said. the environment but also protects Walmsley reviewed the development of farmers and ranchers,” said Walmsley, the Food & Agriculture Climate Alliance who has been heavily involved in FACA (FACA), which includes 70 agriculture, discussions. “I have to say, of the 40 policy food, forestry and environmental recommendations we came up with,
Dickey, Harper discuss state legislative issues Georgia House Agriculture Committee Chairman Rep. Robert Dickey & Georgia Senate Natural Resources/Environment Committee Chairman Sen. Tyler Harper discussed Georgia legislative issues during a panel discussion with GFB President Tom McCall. Harper discussed Senate Bill 260, which pertains to soil amendments applied to fields and House Bill 693, which gives the right-of-way to farm equipment traveling
on state roads when they encounter other vehicles. Dickey praised GFB for the decades of work it has done to address tax issues Georgia farmers face. He encouraged GFB members to support a constitutional amendment that will be on the November 2022 ballot proposing family farms, which have merged, get the same ad valorem tax exemption on farm equipment that they qualified for before merging.
Long receives GFB Commodity Award Congratulations to Gerald Long, former Georgia Farm Bureau president, for being selected the 2021 GFB Commodity Award recipient. This award is given to individuals who have supported and promoted Georgia agriculture. “Gerald has spent decades influencing agricultural policy and advocating for Georgia farmers,” said GFB President Tom McCall. “No doubt, the seeds he has planted throughout his career will be harvested by the next generation of producers. Gerald’s tireless and selfless leadership, ranging from county leader to GFB president, will leave a lasting mark on our organization and Georgia agriculture.” Under Long’s leadership as president, GFB partnered with the Georgia Foundation for Agriculture to create the Georgia Ag Experience mobile agriculture classroom, and the organization made funding agricultural research projects a priority. A third-generation farmer, Long began his farming career in 1973 after attending ABAC and completing his military service in the Army National Guard.
Georgia Farm Bureau News
Through faith and family, the Long farm expanded from a small roadside stand to a diverse operation producing more than 50 varieties of vegetables, beef cattle and row crops. Long has been a GFB member since 1970. He has held many offices on the Decatur County Farm Bureau Board. He served 21 years on the GFB Board of Directors: from 1999 to 2006 as a GFB 9th District director; GFB South Georgia vice president from 2006-2016 while simultaneously GFB 1st vice president from 2008-2016; and GFB president from January 2016 to December 2020. Long also served on the Decatur County Cattlemen’s Association board, the Georgia Cattlemen’s Association and the Georgia Beef Board. He was a founding member of the Georgia Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association and the Flint River Water Planning Policy Center. Long and his wife, Janice, are members of the First Baptist Church of Bainbridge. The Longs have three adult children – Justin, Jared and Jeanie, and three grandchildren.
they all fell within Farm Bureau policy. And so, we’ve got environmental groups helping advocate for Farm Bureau policy and opening doors to some offices that we traditionally wouldn’t work with.” Carbon markets are being developed as a part of federal climate policy. AFBF has developed a primer on sustainability and carbon markets, which can be found online at www.fb.org/market-intel and www.fb.org/land/sustainability-in-ag.
Ag commissioner: fair will be held Georgia Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black thanked Farm Bureau for its long-time support of the Georgia National Fair and the Georgia National Fairgrounds & Agricenter. Commissioner Black said the Georgia National Fair will be held Oct. 7-17. “The Georgia Grown building will be open and the Baby Barn will be showcasing the miracle of birth again for Georgia families,” Black said. Black encouraged farmers to represent agriculture in their local communities. “I would suggest to you that it’s never been more important to speak out for agriculture,” Black said. “It may be representing ag at your county commission meetings and at your local schools.”
Gerald Long | Photo by Sidney Middlebrooks
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Georgia Farm Bureau News 8/3/20 1:44 PM
GFB FUNDS AG RESEARCH GFB has awarded almost $137,000 in grants to nine researchers at the UGA College of Agriculture & Environmental Sciences for studies addressing production, economic and marketing issues facing Georgia farmers. Pictured from left, GFB President Tom McCall congratulates recipients of the Georgia Farm Bureau 2021 Research Grants recognized at the GFB Commodity Conference: Dr. Lawton Stewart (beef grazing research); Mark Czarnota (Christmas tree research); Dr. Sudeep Bag (cotton disease research); Cristiane Pilon (peanut water use research), Lee Cowart accepting on behalf of Dr. Cesar Escalante (labor research) & Dr. Lisa Baxter (forage research). Not pictured: Dr. Alex Stelzleni (beef product research); Dr. Kari Turner (development of a livestock program for ag teachers) & Dr. Emran Ali (blueberry research). “As federal and state funds for ag research decline, Georgia Farm Bureau feels it’s our job to step up and join other ag organizations in supporting research that benefits Georgia farmers,” GFB President Tom McCall said.
Photo by Jennifer Whittaker Since 2018, GFB has awarded about $392,600 in research grants to address Georgia ag challenges.
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Use of Vermeer baler top prize in GFB Hay Contest Oct. 31 entry deadline
The GFB Hay Contest winner receives free use of a 604R baler for a year with the option to buy it at a reduced price courtesy of the Vermeer Manufacturing Company. | Photo courtesy of Vermeer Georgia Farm Bureau is calling all members who grow any variety of Bermudagrass hay to enter its annual hay contest. Hay entered in the 2021 GFB Quality Hay Contest will be tested at the UGA Feed & Environmental Water Lab using the Relative Forage Quality (RFQ) Test, which provides an analysis of the nutritional value of the hay. Winners will be determined by the RFQ analysis and announced in December at the GFB Convention. Prizes will be presented to the top five producers. GFB’s annual hay contest encourages quality hay production, which leads to higher quality livestock and more money for Georgia hay producers. Producers who have their hay tested every year can see improvements they make in managing their hay fields by looking at multi-year analysis. RFQ is the best method to compare forages. RFQ provides a number that
gives producers an idea of the amount of digestible nutrients their hay contains. Fully mature alfalfa is given a base point of 100. Since the base price for hay sales and auctions in many parts of the world is the value of poor-quality alfalfa, RFQ provides a mechanism for indexing quality to value. The RFQ for Bermudagrass in Georgia typically ranges from 75 to 120 or higher. If a hay producer sells their hay based on its RFQ, a higher price can be demanded for the higher quality. Livestock producers are more likely to pay these premiums as this hay will yield higher weight gains and require fewer supplements. With quality in mind, it is a good management practice to test your hay after baling. RFQ and other analytical data can help you manage potential problems with moisture, nitrates or poor digestibility, especially in years with adverse weather.
How to enter Entry forms outlining complete contest rules may be picked up at your county Farm Bureau office or downloaded from the GFB website www.gfb.ag/hay . There is a $20 fee for each entry to cover the cost of the lab test. Producers may enter more than one sample. Checks should be made payable to Georgia Farm Bureau. Contest participants will receive a detailed copy of their hay analysis and may choose to have a free listing in the ’21/’22 online GFB Hay Directory. Producers must be a GFB member to enter the contest or list hay for sale in the hay directory. The deadline to enter contest is Oct. 31. The cost to list hay in the directory alone is $10 and may be submitted at any time.
Jeremy Taylor is an ag programs specialist in the GFB Public Policy Department. Contact him for any questions about the GFB Hay Contest. He may be reached at 478-474-0679, ext. 5212 or firstname.lastname@example.org .
14 Fall 2021
Georgia Farm Bureau News
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Fall 2021 15
FOLLOW SAFETY PRECAUTIONS AROUND PTOS & HYDRAULICS TO PREVENT FARM ACCIDENTS Article & Photos by Jay Stone Farmers have tractors for one reason: They have a lot of big jobs to do. A tractor can provide the power to accomplish almost all of the jobs, thanks in large part to power take-off (PTO) and hydraulics. For all the good things PTO and hydraulics technology allow farmers to do – moving massive, heavy objects and performing various tasks en masse – they can cause life-altering injuries if not handled properly.
PTO SAFE SETUP – The three-sided frame
above the PTO & the black plastic cylinder around the drive shaft make this a safer connection.
– The exposed metal of both the PTO shaft and the drive shaft make this connection hazardous. PTO UNSAFE SETUP
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The Penn State University Cooperative Extension fact sheet for PTO safety includes examples of incidents where farmers got tangled in the PTO or a drive shaft connected to it. The descriptions almost read as if Stephen King wrote them: an arm torn off at the shoulder socket; muscle damage to lower leg; multiple injuries to multiple body parts; death. The PTO is the nub of metal protruding from the tractor’s rear axle. When the tractor engine is engaged, it spins at 540 revolutions per minute (rpm) or 1,000 rpm. Implements are connected by a drive shaft. If either the PTO or the drive shaft is exposed and catches a farmer’s clothing, the cloth is quickly spooled to the equipment, dragging the farmer with it. On modern tractors, both PTO and implement drive shafts come with safety guards. The PTO is shielded by a frame of metal attached to the axle. The drive shafts often are encased in a loose plastic sheath that stays stationary as the drive shaft spins. UGA Professor Glen Rains, whose work includes research on safety topics, maintains that even with those safety features, it’s best to maintain awareness of how close you are to the PTO and make it a habit to avoid being near it. “One thing we always tell people is don’t work around a PTO,” Rains said. “Just a slip and you can fall into it. Never work around it. Don’t step over it. Make it a habit to not even work around it, even if it’s not on.” Rains offered other tips to keep PTO work to its intended purpose: • Always keep the shields on the PTO. If the shield is spinning, it’s not providing proper safety. • Keep people, especially children, away from the PTO. • Turn the tractor off to disengage the PTO before you get off the tractor to work on your equipment. “Basically, if you create good habits to not do those things, even if you’re in a hurry or tired, you won’t make a mistake and get inadvertently caught up in the PTO,” Rains said. “You don’t want to have to think about it because of the possibility that you’re in a hurry or you’re thinking about taking shortcuts. It just takes one bad shortcut to end badly.” For more on PTO safety, visit www.gfb.ag/PTOsafety .
Georgia Farm Bureau News
HYDRAULICS Similar to PTO, hydraulics enable farmers to perform any task where extraordinary force is required. Rains said that when used with a tractor, a threeinch hydraulic cylinder can move about 13,000 pounds - about the weight of a fully grown male elephant. Hydraulics pose hazards for pinching/crushing injuries and fluid punctures or burns from leaking fluid. “I always tell farmers or anyone working with hydraulics to not rely on hydraulics as the sole source of power if you are working underneath equipment,” Rains said. “If you want to raise the front end of a cotton picker and get underneath and work on it, I would put something solid between the ground and the header in case somebody accidentally hits the lever that lets the header down, or there’s a hydraulic failure.” Hydraulics rely on pressurized fluids, usually oil-based, which become heated under pressure. Other tips for hydraulics safety: • Check your hydraulic lines annually for damage. If the plastic covering is cracked or if there is exposed reinforcement or braiding showing, consider replacing those hoses to prevent leaks. • Check hydraulic fluid levels. Maintain at the right level. Too low can cause cavitation inside the hoses, which can cause little slivers of metal to get loose increasing the chances of failure. • Keep hydraulic ports marked to ensure the implement hoses are connected to the correct control from the tractor seat. Rains noted that improperly connected hoses can result in the implement moving down when the up control is engaged, creating a crush hazard if someone is working beneath or within the implement. “I think the main thing is to check your hydraulic lines every year for damage,”
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Fall 2021 17
GFB AWARDS PRIZES TO GA JR. NATIONAL LIVESTOCK GRAND CHAMPIONS Article & Photos by Jennifer Whittaker The 31st Annual Georgia Junior National Livestock Show (GJNLS) grand champions didn’t win their titles by accident. The six winners have a combined 41 years of showing experience between them. For the tenth year, Georgia Farm Bureau sponsored the cash prizes and coveted belt buckles for the species grand champions of the GJNLS held in February at the Georgia National Fairgrounds in Perry. GFB President Tom McCall and GFB Field Services Associate Director Clay Talton traveled across Georgia May 24
through June 3 to personally present this year’s grand champion winners with their belt buckles and prize checks. McCall and Talton visited with the champions, their family members, and 4-H agents or FFA advisors who were able to attend receptions hosted by each champion’s county Farm Bureau office. “Georgia Farm Bureau is proud to support the Georgia Junior Livestock Program,” said McCall. “We’re proud of the work these kids put into their animals with the day-today care of them. These livestock projects
help prepare 4-Hers and FFA members for the responsibilities they’ll have as adults. We hope the positive experience they have showing livestock will make them want to pursue jobs in agriculture or to be farmers.” About 1,560 Georgia 4-H and FFA members exhibited 2,534 animals at the 2021 GJNLS. Meet the six grand champions on the following pages. Visit www.gfb. ag/21gajrshowpics to see photos of the grand champions being recognized at their county receptions this spring.
MARKET GILT Makinley Duke Calhoun County 4-Her Makinley Duke captured the $1,500 grand champion market gilt (young female) prize with a pig named Karma. The daughter of Kelli and Jackie Duke of Leary, Makinley has shown hogs for six years. “I watched Charlotte’s Web, and I told my dad I wanted a pig,” Makinley said when asked how she started showing. “I’ve been working with Karma since around November. We have a long driveway, and I took her down and back up three times a day. I worked showmanship with her, too. She is very sassy. She loves to eat boots and brushes.” Makinley was a sixth grader at Lee County Middle School when she won the award.
18 Fall 2021
Georgia Farm Bureau News
“We’re proud of the work these kids put into their animals with the day-to-day care of them. These livestock projects help prepare 4-Hers and FFA members for the responsibilities they’ll have as adults." -Tom McCall, GFB President
COMMERCIAL DAIRY HEIFER Angelica Smith Angelica Smith was a sophomore at Houston County High School (HCHS) when she won the grand champion commercial dairy heifer prize of $1,500 with a red Holstein she called “Applejacks.” This was the second year Smith showed dairy cattle as a member of the HCHS FFA. The daughter of Christopher and Janet Smith of Kathleen, Angelica was introduced to showing dairy cattle by her older sister, Aaliyah, who also showed dairy cows as an FFA member. Angelica said she began her FFA showing career in 8th grade showing pigs with her best friend, Karli Stallworth. “We went into high school and they didn’t have pigs; they had dairy heifers we could show. So, that’s what we did,” Angelica said. “I averaged working with Applejacks an hour after school each day and two hours on Saturday and Sunday.”
BREEDING EWE Gabrielle Ralston Winning the grand champion breeding ewe prize of $1,000, allowed Gordon County 4-Her Gabrielle Ralston to end her eight-year showing career on a high note. Ralston was a senior at Sonoraville High School when she won with her ewe named “Unicorn.” Showing has been a family affair for Gabrielle as she showed alongside her fraternal twin sister, Jasmine. “It’s a team victory for our household. Winning this award means a whole lot. It’s been a goal since day one,” Gabrielle said. “When we picked her out, she was an ugly duckling, but she blossomed into a very nice swan for us.” The Ralston sisters began their showing career with goats and then got into sheep. Gabrielle has also shown cattle and pigs.
Georgia Farm Bureau News
Fall 2021 19
BREEDING DOE Carlie Christian Franklin County 4-Her Carlie Christian earned a $1,000 prize for her grand champion breeding doe (female goat) “Miss P”. Christian, a sixth grader at Franklin Middle School when she won the award, has been showing for five years. She also shows hogs and lambs. The daughter of Bryan and Leslie Christian of Royston, Carlie says she prefers showing goats.
“My family has always been in the cattle business. My grandfather showed and my Daddy showed as well, so I guess it’s in my blood,” -Jesse Cronic “I got into showing because of my family’s influence. My grandfather influenced me to show. Both of my parents and my uncles showed too,” - Bella Chandler
BEEF HEIFER Jesse Cronic Jesse Cronic, who won the grand champion beef heifer prize of $2,500 with a Simmental named “Lola,” is the third generation of his family to show cattle. Cronic, who was a sophomore FFA member at Jackson County High School when he won the award, has been showing livestock for six years. He started showing goats in second grade and switched to cattle in fifth grade. He is the son of Michael and Shane Cronic of Braselton. “My family has always been in the cattle business. My grandfather [Barry Cronic] showed and my Daddy [Michael] showed as well, so I guess it’s in my blood,” Jesse said. Jesse said he was, “looking for an Angus heifer to show, but I stumbled on this one and I knew she was the one I wanted to bring home. She’s the soundest female [cow] I’ve ever owned. She’s got the ability to get out in the pasture and produce calves. We can show and sell her profitably.”
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Georgia Farm Bureau News
MARKET BEEF CATTLE Bella Chandler After showing livestock for 14 years, winning the grand champion market beef cattle prize of $5,000 was a dream come true for East Jackson High School FFA member Bella Chandler. The daughter of Rodney and Gay Chandler of Royston, Bella was a junior when she won the award. Chandler says she was about three years old when she started showing goats. She also showed sheep and then started showing cows at nine, as soon as she was eligible. “I got into showing because of my family’s influence. My grandfather influenced me to show. Both of my parents and my uncles showed too,” Bella said. She said she relied on advice of family friends to help her pick out her prize-winning Maine & Angus crossbred steer “Lupe” (pronounced Loo-pay). She also credits her uncle David Farmer for his help throughout her showing career. With 14 years of showing under her belt, Chandler said the hardest part about showing is “When the calves don’t act right.” Lupe proved to be a handful.
G E O RG I A
“He was actually pretty crazy. Just scared of everything,” Chandler said. “We used horse ear plugs, but we took them out for this show, and he did ok.”
OCTOBER 7-17, 2021
W W W. G E O RG I A N AT I O N A L FA I R . C O M Georgia Farm Bureau News
Fall 2021 21
BLACK RETIRES FROM GFB AFTER 25 YEARS Georgia Farm Bureau Assistant Administrative Officer & Field Services Director Dennis Black retired from the organization Sept. 3 after faithfully serving the organization for more than 25 years. “The Farm Bureau family sincerely thanks Dennis for the years of dedicated service and leadership he has provided our organization,” GFB President Tom McCall said. “We wish him and his wife, Teresa, all the best as they enter this new phase of their lives.” Black has been a farmer member of the Stephens County Farm Bureau for more than 30 years. He began his GFB career in July 1996 as the GFB 2nd District federation manager. He assisted county Farm Bureaus in their efforts to advocate for farmers and promote agriculture in the 14-county district in Northeast Georgia. In 2014, Black became GFB Field Services Department associate director and in 2017 was named GFB Field Services director. In
these positions, Black worked with county Farm Bureaus and GFB staff to fulfill the organization’s mission. He was a major driver in GFB and the Georgia Foundation for Agriculture’s efforts to create the Georgia Ag Experience mobile ag classroom that was unveiled last year. In November 2020, Black was named GFB assistant administrative officer in addition to leading the Field Services Department. Black plans to return to his Stephens County cattle and poultry farm to spend more time with his family. The Blacks raise beef cattle, breeder hens and hay. He and Teresa have three adult children: Chris (Coda); Ellen ( Fonzo) and Clay (Annalise) and three grandchildren.
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22 Fall 2021
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Georgia Farm Bureau News
GFB welcomes new staff
You may notice some new faces at GFB events this fall. Join us in welcoming these new members of the GFB Field Services Department. Breanna Berry is the new GFB Leadership Development Coordinator. She will manage the GFB Young Farmers & Ranchers (YF&R) and the GFB Women’s Leadership Committees. She started June 1. A native of Pike County, Berry has worked as an ag education teacher for the past three years. She previously worked for the UGA College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences (CAES), recruiting students and managing the CAES student ambassador program. Berry earned bachelor’s and specialist degrees in ag education from the University of Georgia and a master’s degree in ag education from Auburn University. Berry’s husband, Zach, is a worship pastor at First Baptist Church of Conyers. Berry may be reached via email at email@example.com or 478.474.0679, ext. 5232. Katie Murray is the new federation manager for GFB’s 2nd District in Northeast Georgia as of April 30. A native of Colquitt County, Murray grew up showing cattle, hogs, and sheep as an active Colquitt County FFA member. She graduated from the UGA College of Agricultural & Environmental Sciences (CAES) with a bachelor’s degree in ag education. Murray graduated from North Carolina State University with a master’s degree in ag education. Most recently, Murray worked as an admissions counselor at the UGA Tifton Campus where she promoted CAES degree options and advised prospective transfer students. Murray may be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or 478.474.0679, ext. 7932. In Northwest Georgia, Lacy Powell is the new GFB 1st District federation manager as of Aug. 2. Originally from Newton County, Powell grew up on a small beef cattle farm. As a youth she showed cattle. Powell earned an associate degree in ag education from Abraham Baldwin Agricultural College and
Georgia Farm Bureau News
a bachelor’s degree in ag education from the UGA CAES. She earned master’s and specialist degrees from Auburn University in agriscience education. Powell has worked the past five years as an agriculture teacher at Calhoun High School in Gordon County. Lacy and her husband, Josh, live in Calhoun and have a son, Lane. Powell may be reached at email@example.com or 478.474.0679, ext. 7931. Kane Staines is the new GFB 10th District federation manager in lower Southeast Georgia as of Aug. 9. A native of Berrien County, Staines earned his bachelor’s degree in ag education from UGA’s CAES and a master’s degree in adult and career education from Valdosta State University. Staines previously worked as general manager for Lenox Peanut Company/Nutrien Ag Solutions and as a researcher/manager of the UGA Tifton Campus Microgin. Staines and his wife, Lanie, live in Lenox with their children, Alley, Jase and Boone. Staines may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 478.474.0679, ext. 7940. GFB district federation managers work with county Farm Bureau federation staff and volunteers in their districts to address organizational issues and carry out ag programs.
Fall 2021 23
Georgia Foundation for Ag Update
Elementary classes urged to enter Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities STEM Challenge
Georgia elementary classes in third through fifth grades are encouraged to put their science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) skills to work to explore the role healthy forests play in creating healthy communities by protecting our air, soil and water resources. Elementary teachers and their students may enter the Fall ’21 Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities STEM Challenge by Nov. 12 for the chance to win a prize package totaling $350 for their class. The top grade-winner from the third, fourth and fifth-grade entries will win a prize package. Winners will be announced later in November. The Georgia Association of Conservation Districts (GACD), a non-profit organization that promotes the conservation of natural resources, is sponsoring the statewide competition, which is being coordinated by the Georgia Foundation for Agriculture (GFA). Teachers interested in participating in the Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities STEM Challenge may visit www.gfb. ag/stemchallenge for more information and to register for the program. Once teachers register their classes, they will receive access to a digital resource toolkit that equips the students to participate in the forestry STEM challenge.
The purpose of the challenge is to encourage elementary teachers and students in grades 3-5 to explore aspects of Georgia agriculture by applying their STEM skills to solve real-world problems that farmers face in producing our food and fiber. Participating classes will be asked to use their STEM skills to answer a real-life question pertaining to forestry and create a video presentation highlighting what they learned. Almost 50 classes registered for the Spring ’21 Soil Health Explorers STEM Challenge, which the GACD sponsored. Winners were announced in May. Congratulations to Roopville Elementary’s “QUEST Kids,” taught by Jennifer Carroll, for winning the third-grade prize! Trinity Christian School’s “Fourth-Grade Crusaders Team,” taught by Nona Dasher took top honors in its division. Dallas Elementary’s “Venture Soil Detectives,” taught by Stephanie Atkinson won the fifthgrade competition. Teachers of each winning class received a $250 classroom supply grant and an educational conservation resource kit donated by GACD. Each class that participated in the spring STEM Challenge answered the question, “How can we improve soil biodiversity and overall soil health?” Visit www. gfb.ag/spring21GAESTEMwinners to see the spring awards presentation and the three winning video presentations.
The Georgia Foundation for Agriculture is a non-profit 501(c)3 organization dedicated to preparing Georgia agriculture’s next generation of leaders. The foundation offers scholarships to students pursuing agricultural careers, manages the Georgia Ag Experience mobile classroom, funds leadership development programs and projects that increase students’ and the public’s understanding of agriculture. Visit www.gafoundationag.org to make a tax-deductible donation or learn more about the foundation and its programs. For more information contact Lily Baucom at email@example.com or 478.405.3461.
24 Fall 2021
Georgia Farm Bureau News
The Georgia Foundation for Agriculture thanks all who have contributed to its mission during the second quarter of 2021 to prepare the next generation of Georgia leaders for success in agriculture. We are grateful to Georgia Farm Bureau and the Georgia Farm Bureau Insurance Company for their ongoing support.
William Andy Bell III Dennis L. Black John R. Branch Mark R. Brose Amy Carter Gayland G. Collins Olivia Gillis William Grizzle David L. Jolley Dan Logan Norman McGlohon John Mixon George & Lynn Monk John Michael Newsome Rocky Nobles Dexter Shearouse Vicki Stewart Gibbs Wilson
Deborah H. Ellis Jeanna G. Fennell Jeffrey A. Harvey Pamela K. Hegwood John F. Hilton Karren E. Hoskins Amy J. Jeffries Ronald G. Johnson Melissa G. Loyd Lisa C. Newberry Vicki L. Shepard Jack Stewart Megan W. Thompson Sara J. Walker Kimberly A. Whitley
‘21 Schley Co. Elementary Ag Day Volunteers by Mandi Smith Mailhot
J. Robert Farr by John Michael Newsome
Additional thanks to AmazonSmile contributors, Facebook fundraisers & supporters of special events and product sales. For more information on giving to the Georgia Foundation for Agriculture please visit http://gafoundationag.org/ JoinUs.html
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Saturday, October 30, 2021 1:00 PM EST Circle F Sale Arena • 70 Prentiss Rd Baxley, Ga 31513 We will be selling Registered Brahman and F1 females and bulls. Roughly 100 head will be sold at the Circle F Farms Fall Sale. Visit www.circleffarms.com for more information and follow us on
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Lunch will be served beginning at 11:30 AM on sale day. Bring the family and come and enjoy a day full of fun at Circle F Farms. To request a catalog please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Georgia Farm Bureau News
Fall 2021 25
Farmtastic Family Fun Day brings ag book to life
By Jay Stone
Fun was in full supply at the Farmtastic Family Fun Day hosted by the Georgia Foundation for Agriculture (GFA), Georgia Farm Bureau (GFB), the Dairy Alliance and the Georgia Public Library Service at the Rock House Creamery July 24. More than 100 visitors toured the Georgia Ag Experience mobile classroom, which highlights Georgia agriculture through hands-on activities. When guests weren’t doing that, they swung on tire swings, enjoyed story time, drew cows, took tractor-drawn wagon rides to see real cows, churned butter and planted seeds. And, no visit to a creamery would be complete without a serving of ice cream. GFB President Tom McCall read “Tales of the Dairy Godmother: Chuck’s Ice Cream Wish” during story time, with the goal of improving agricultural literacy.
26 Fall 2021
“The thing about reading to these kids, it piques their interest in where their ice cream really comes from,” McCall said. “I hope they learned a little bit that ice cream starts with the grass on the ground and the cow that eats it. Then, they got to see how it’s made here. They learned that it just isn’t in a freezer in a grocery store somewhere.” GFA received the proceeds from the event. “We’d like to extend our heartfelt thanks to Rock House Creamery and Keith Kelly for their generous support of the Georgia Foundation for Agriculture,” said GFA Executive Director Lily Baucom. “This is the first year we have hosted an ag literacy celebration to highlight the AFBF Ag book of the year. We partnered with the Georgia Public Library System, Georgia EMC, and the Dairy Alliance to bring
the book to life here at the Rock House Creamery. We aim to create an in-person experience like this every summer to allow families to enjoy time on a farm.” The Dairy Alliance had a table-top video game. Morgan County FFA students helped children plant seeds in cups filled with soil. Children churned butter in plastic containers with assistance from Newton County Farm Bureau. Kelly, who owns Rock House Creamery in Morgan County, said he was willing to open his farm for the event to encourage children to learn and become interested in farming. The 130-acre farm, where Kelly milks a 100-head dairy herd, sells its milk, cheese and ice cream at Farmview Market in Madison and other outlets across the state. The event, sponsored by Georgia EMC, served to promote the American Farm Bureau Foundation book of the year “Tales of a Dairy Godmother: Chuck’s Ice Cream Wish,” which Georgia EMC and GFA have donated copies of to all of Georgia’s public libraries.
Photos by Logan Thomas
Georgia Farm Bureau News
Ward Jenkins taught children how to draw a cow during the Farmtastic Fun Day event. Photo by Logan Thomas
Tale of a book illustrator By Jay Stone
Ward Jenkins started with a blank canvas when he began illustrating “Tales of a Dairy Godmother: Chuck’s Ice Cream Wish.” Jenkins said he knew next-to-nothing about dairy farming. “I didn’t know the difference between a dairy farm and other farms,” said Jenkins. “So, the fact that there’s a dairy farm that’s a very specific thing - I’m like, oh, wow. But now knowing that, it makes sense.” Jenkins produced the illustration for the book, working in collaboration with author Viola Butler. The American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture named the book its 2021 Book of the Year. The award is given to children’s books that accurately depict agriculture. While the Dairy Godmother is a fantasy character,
Georgia Farm Bureau News
the cows in the book are not. By design, they don’t talk or exhibit human behavior. Rock House was one of three dairies Jenkins visited to learn how milk is produced and how ice cream is made. It was the smallest of the three farms, and the only one that had a creamery on site. Being there made Jenkins feel like a kid. “The way I drew it and the way I depicted each scene was as if I was one of the kids reading it,” he said. “I like to think of myself as a kid at heart. I look at things the way kids would with a curious nature.” In the drawing lesson Jenkins gave
“When I get sign-offs from people who are dairy farmers, then I see them reading to the kids … I’m very proud of that,” - Ward Jenkins during the Farmtastic Fun Day, he broke the process of drawing a cow down almost line-by-line, beginning with the idea that the picture would end up showing a cow doing what cows love to do: eat. One line for the back, two more for the cow’s neck,
a couple of arcs positioned to show its head, little loops for ears, and so on. Jenkins grew up in DeKalb County. He spent some time in Portland, Oregon, before he found himself back in DeKalb, where he and his wife, Andrea, live. They have two children, Ava, age 21, and Ezra, 17. His only experiences with agriculture as a child were visiting Mathis Dairy and milking Rosebud, the dairy’s locally famous cow, and afterward receiving an “I milked Rosebud” button. Through the process of illustrating the book, he gained an appreciation for dairy farms, to the point where he feels compelled to share his newfound knowledge and in some cases correct statements from other people about dairy farming. “When I get sign-offs from people who are dairy farmers, then I see them reading to the kids … I’m very proud of that,” Jenkins said. To purchase copies of the book, visit www.dmsfulfillment.com/FarmBureau. To learn more about Jenkins’ art, visit www.wardjenkins.com.
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GFA & Georgia EMC gift ag books to libraries
ONLINE AUCTION SEPT. 27 – OCT. 8
The Georgia Foundation for Agriculture and Georgia EMC partnered for the fourth consecutive year to donate a children’s book that accurately depicts agriculture to the approximately 400 libraries in the Georgia Public Library Service. Each county Farm Bureau received enough copies of "Chuck's Ice Cream Wish, Tales of the Dairy Godmother" to present to their local public libraries on behalf of the GFA and Georgia EMC. County Farm Bureau and regional EMC representatives presented the books throughout the summer. Spalding County Office Manager Cindy Vandiver, right, and Central GA EMC's Christy Chewning, left, recently presented "Chuck's Ice Cream Wish, Tales of the Dairy Godmother" and "Full of Beans, Henry Ford Grows a Car” to Natalie Marshall at the Flint River Regional Library in Griffin.
Support the Georgia Foundation for Agriculture. Register at www.gafoundationag.org/auction by Sept. 26 to receive auction alerts. Visit same website to bid on great items including football tickets for multiple teams, tech gadets, home décor, family activities & much more.
No matter what the future brings... We’ll be there. 28 Fall 2021
WWW.SFBLI.COM Georgia Farm Bureau News
Ag in the Classroom Update
High school artists capture beauty of Georgia agriculture
Sydney Smith of Hart County won the GFB Art Contest with this drawing. Visit www.gfb.ag/21artcontestwinners to see all of the district winners’ art. Georgia high school students captured the beauty of Georgia agriculture as they created entries for the 27th Annual Georgia Farm Bureau (GFB) High School Art Contest. The 63 county Farm Bureaus that held local contests submitted their top winners to GFB from which 10 district winners were chosen. The 10 district winners’ drawings were posted on the Georgia Farm Bureau Facebook page April 21 to allow Georgia’s ag community to select the state winner and runners-ups. After a week, the drawing with the most likes on the GFB Facebook page won the contest and the drawings with the second and third most votes were named runners-up. “Georgia Farm Bureau’s High School Art Contest provides a unique insight into how young people view agriculture when they use black and white media to depict their creativity on paper. From farm scenes to livestock - talented students draw what they’ve experienced, have learned and love about Georgia agriculture,” said GFB Women’s Leadership Committee Chairman Heather Cabe. “Each year I continue to be amazed at the talent and accuracy these contestants submit with their entries.”
Sydney Smith of Hart County sketched the first-place winning picture. Angel Alvares of Laurens County and Kayli Brinks of Effingham County were named the state runners-up. Smith won $250 as the state winner and $100 as the GFB 2nd District winner. Alvares and Brinks each won $150 for being runners-up and $100 each for being the GFB 6th and 7th District winners respectively. Other district winners in the art contest were: Hannah Pak, Forsyth County, GFB 1st Dist.; Emmanuel Kamos, Carroll County, GFB 3rd Dist.; Maddie Cummings, Greene County, GFB 4th Dist.; Riley Owens, Pike County, GFB 5th Dist.; Bentley Savelle, Lee County, GFB 8th Dist.; Adia Barrera, Brooks County, GFB 9th Dist.; and Grace Salinas, Glynn County, GFB 10th Dist. Contestants were instructed to create a black, white and gray drawing using graphite, charcoal, pastel, chalk, colored pencil, ballpoint pen or mixed media appropriate for printing. Drawings were judged on how well the artwork represents agriculture in the student’s county or Georgia and for artistic merit.
Georgia Farm Bureau Ag in the Classroom Coordinator Lauren Goble may be reached at email@example.com or 478-474-0679, ext. 5135. Contact your county Farm Bureau if you’d like to volunteer with its Ag in the Classroom program.
Georgia Farm Bureau News
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Former GFB President Wayne Dollar passes Wayne Dollar, who served as Georgia Farm Bureau president from 1994 to 2006, died Aug. 16. He was 89. Dollar was a diversified row crop, cattle and timber farmer from Thomas County. “Wayne Dollar loved Georgia agriculture and he loved Farm Bureau,” GFB President Tom McCall said. “The whole GFB family extends our thoughts and prayers to Wayne’s family at this time.” Dollar, who never met a stranger, was sociable and loved to laugh. He was born in Climax, Ga., to W.B. and Marie Dollar and was raised by his grandparents after his mother died when he was two. He graduated from Climax High school in 1951, then joined the U.S. Air Force and served until 1955 as a cryptographer during the Korean War. After returning home from Korea, Dollar worked for Mineral and Chemical in Decatur County before enrolling at Abraham
Baldwin Agricultural College where he earned an associate degree in 1959. He graduated from the University of Georgia with a bachelor’s degree in agriculture and economics in 1961. He served as an Extension agent in Bulloch County from 1961 to 1968. Dollar served as director of the GFB Field Services Department from 1969 to 1971. Dollar served 18 years on the GFB Board of Directors: from 19881992 as a GFB 9th District director; from 1992-1994 as the GFB South Georgia vice president & GFB 1st vice president and 12 years as GFB president. During the 12 years he served as GFB president, Dollar led Farm Bureau in securing the elimination of state ad valorem taxes farmers paid on equipment used to produce their crops as well as those once levied on fruit and nut trees, ornamental trees and shrubs, and livestock as inventory. Dollar is survived by his wife, Jean Betts Fuller Dollar; son, Mike Dollar (Jan); daughters: Patsy Booth Wester; Mary Booth Smith (Ed); Ann Fuller Slocumb (Jerry); Beth Fuller Smith (Don); 11 grandchildren; and 17 great grandchildren. He was preceded in death by his wife of 43 years Odessa Griffin Dollar and grandson Jason Wester.
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Visit www.gfb.ag/fieldnotes to subscribe. 30 Fall 2021
TELLING THE STORY OF GEORGIA AGRICULTURE
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Farm-Monitor.com Georgia Farm Bureau News
GFB photo contest winners focus on ag Congratulations to Holly Gordon of Douglas County for winning the Georgia Farm Bureau Young Farmers & Ranchers 12th Annual Picture Agriculture in Georgia Photo Contest grand prize of $150! Gordon’s photo will be featured on the cover of the 2022 GFB YF&R calendar available at most county Farm Bureau offices in January. The calendar will also feature the 11 honorable mention winners, who each received a $75 prize. Honorable mention winners are: Amy Meeks, Coffee County; Becky McInvale, Crawford County; Cretia Ariail, Franklin County; Jesse Fleming, Houston County; Katie
Williams, Morgan County; Kendall Jimmerson, Louie Perry and Michael Chafin, all of Colquitt County; Molly Rabalais, Upson County; Ricky Minter, Fayette County and Ross Kendrick, Turner County. GFB thanks the more than 90 contestants who submitted more than 200 photos. The GFB YF&R Committee narrowed the submissions down to a group of 19. Voting to choose the overall winner and the honorable mentions was held via Facebook in mid-July. Visit www.gfb.ag/21GFBphotowinners to see all of the winning photos.
Holly Gordon Douglas County
Georgia Farm Bureau News
Georgia Farm Bureau Leadership Development Coordinator Breanna Berry may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 478-474-0679, ext. 5232.
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WE ARE ALL FARM BUREAU Georgia Farm Bureau is committed to serving families like yours. With offices in nearly every county in the state, no one knows Georgia like we do. From the Blue Ridge Mountains to the Okefenokee Swamp, from the Chattahoochee River to the Port of Savannah, from historic small-town squares to Georgia’s largest cities — we’re woven into the fabric of this state.
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