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September/October 2012

Farm Bureau News

‘We plan to make the fair a success’ this fall

Contents 10

Virgnia Farm Bureau News

‘We plan to make the fair a success’ this fall

Virginia Farm Bureau has been actively ensuring that this year’s State Fair of Virginia will meet guests’ agriculture expectations. 16

Young Farmers recognize their peers' accomplishments

Participants in the Young Farmers Summer Expo honored young adults who earned this year’s annual Young Farmers Program awards. 18

Farm transition planning: ‘Everyone has a different path’

Two young producers shared their experiences in planning with a parent for transition of their family farms at the Young Farmers Summer Expo.

Departments 7

In the Garden


Viewing Virginia


Good for You!


Heart of the Home



Volume 71, Number 6 September/October 2012 Virginia Farm Bureau News (USPS 017-763) (ISSN 1525-528X) is published six times a year, January, March, May, June, August, September/October (combined issue). It is published by Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, 12580 West Creek Parkway, Richmond, VA 23238. Periodicals postage rate is paid in Richmond, VA. The annual subscription rate is $1.42 (included in membership dues). Postmaster: Please send changes of address to, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation, Farm Bureau News, P.O. Box 27552, Richmond, VA 23261-7552; fax 804-290-1096. Editorial and business offices are located at 12580 West Creek Parkway, Richmond, VA 23238. Telephone 804-290-1000, fax 804-290-1096. Email address is virginiafarmbureaunews@vafb. com. Office hours are 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday.

Members — Address change? If your address or phone number has changed, or is about to change, contact your county Farm Bureau. They will update your membership and subscription information. All advertising is accepted subject to the publisher’s approval. Advertisers must assume liability for the content of their advertising. The publisher maintains the right to cancel advertising for nonpayment or reader complaints about services or products. The publisher assumes no liability for products or services advertised.


Member: Virginia Press Association

editorial team Greg Hicks Vice President, Communications Pam Wiley Managing Editor Kathy Dixon Sr. Staff Writer/Photographer Sara Owens Staff Writer/Photographer Bill Altice Graphic Designer Maria La Lima Graphic Designer Cathy Vanderhoff Advertising

publication schedule Producer members will receive their next issue of Virginia Farm Bureau News in January 2013. The magazine is published six times a year.


virginia farm bureau federation


On the Cover 10

Virginia Farm Bureau Federation entered into a partnership this summer to preserve and enhance agriculture-related aspects of the State Fair of Virginia.

Officers Wayne F. Pryor, President Edward A. Scharer, Vice President Board of Directors director district Emily Edmondson 1 Archie B. Atwell 2 Evelyn H. Janney 3 Gordon R. Metz 4 Stephen L. Saufley 5 Peter A. Truban 6 Thomas E. Graves 7 H. Carl Tinder Sr. 8 Henry E. Wood Jr. 9 Robert J. Mills Jr. 10 J. M. Jenkins Jr. 11 W. Ellis Walton 12 M. L. Everett Jr. 13 David L. Hickman 14 Janice R. Burton * Robert Harris **

county Tazewell Smyth Floyd Henry Rockingham Shenandoah Orange Albemarle Buckingham Pittsylvania Lunenburg Middlesex Southampton Accomack Halifax Pittsylvania *Women’s Committee Chairman **Young Farmers Committee Chairman

Freedom to farm is theme of Farm Bureau convention


armers just want the ability to effectively produce food for the world. This year’s Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Annual Convention will focus on that desire with its theme of “Freedom to Farm: Cultivating the American Dream.” The event will be held Nov. 27-29 at the Westfields Marriott in Chantilly. Keynote speaker Stuart Rothenberg will examine how the recent presidential election could affect farmers. Rothenberg is editor and publisher of The Rothenberg Political Report, a non-partisan newsletter that provides analysis of presidential, House, Senate and gubernatorial elections. He will address convention attendees at the Commodity Day luncheon on Tuesday. In addition to his newsletter, Rothenberg writes a column in Capitol Hill’s Roll Call twice a week. He has contributed opinion pieces to The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, The New York Times and the Orlando Sentinel. Rothenberg’s political expertise also has garnered him appearances on NBC’s Meet the Press and TODAY and ABC’s This Week and Nightline. Following the keynote speech, participants can attend afternoon workshops to learn how American agriculture is affected by world economics, and also how they can effectively share agriculture’s story with consumers. Dr. David Kohl, president of AgriVisions LLC, a consulting business for agricultural organizations, will lead a workshop titled “The Wild World of Global Economics.” He will address how world economies are influencing land values, commodities and agricultural input costs. Kohl worked for 25 years as a professor of agricultural finance and small business management and entrepreneurship in Virginia Tech’s Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics and is currently a professor emeritus there.

A second workshop will introduce attendees to the : U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance and why it was formed to spark national conversations between ] ^ consumers and farmers. The workshop will divulge research that indicates consumers want more information about their food and that they want to hear about farmers’ continuous improvement efforts. The workshop leader also will give participants suggestions on how they can get involved in national conversations about our nation’s food supply. On Wednesday morning, American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman will address convention participants. Stallman has served as AFBF president since 2000 and is a past president of the Texas Farm Bureau. VIRGINIA FARM BUREAU FEDERATION Wednesday’s lunch 2012 Annual Convention | Westfields Marriott Hotel speaker is Jolene Brown, November 27 – 29 an Iowa corn and soybean farmer, author and family business consultant. She will present “Wrinkles of offices of VFBF president, vice president, Wit and Wisdom,” an inspirational speech Women’s Committee chairman and Young based on old-fashioned words of insight Farmers Committee chairman. such as “Don’t count your chickens before The convention is open to voting they’re hatched” and “Keep your fences delegates and any other interested Farm mended.” Bureau members. Details and registration Voting delegates from each county forms will be available at county Farm Farm Bureau will help shape the Bureau offices and online this fall. organization’s state and federal policies for the coming year. Delegates also will elect members of the VFBF board of directors to represent Districts 2, 5, 8, 11 and 14. Also up for election are the

Freedom to Farm Cultivating the American Dream

september/october 2012



It’s not over until they count the votes


As county Farm Bureaus began holding this year’s annual meetings and picnics, their leaders began reminding members about the property rights referendum that will be on the Nov 6 ballot. It’s a proposed amendment to Virginia’s constitution that would protect your land from eminent domain abuse, and many of our producer members are very familiar with it. A year ago, they signed nearly 14,000 postcards to their state legislators in support of the amendment. That was a tremendous—if not surprising—effort, but Farm Bureau won’t be done working on getting this amendment passed until Election Day. Your Farm Bureau organization has spent years building support for this amendment and shepherding it through two successive sessions of the state legislature. While it received bipartisan support, the ultimate decision will be made by Virginia’s voters.

• The condemner will have to prove that the intended use is public.

Opponents of the amendment have said Virginia’s constitution already provides those protections, but Farm Bureau and other property rights advocates don’t believe it currently goes far enough. The proposed amendment would tighten the state’s definition of public use, which at the moment is left to the discretion of the General Assembly. This new language in the constitution would ensure that your land cannot be taken and given to another private owner for development. That’s a detail too important to overlook. Responsible voters owe it to themselves to be familiar with everything on the ballot before they step into the voting booth. That’s why Farm Bureau will be working in the coming weeks with the Virginia Agribusiness Council, the Virginia Forestry Association, the Virginia Poultry Federation, the National Federation of Independent Businesses, Americans For Prosperity and other organizations to build public awareness of the ballot initiative. If you own property – or one day aspire to own property—I hope you will make time to vote on Nov. 6. Actually, I hope you were planning to vote anyway. It’s been a long campaign to get the proposed amendment on this year’s ballot, but the fight’s not over until officials count the votes. Be sure to make yours count.

• Property owners whose land is taken will be ensured fair compensation for their losses.

Wayne F. Pryor, a Goochland County beef and grain producer, is president of Virginia Farm Bureau.

Question 1 on the Nov. 6 ballot will read: “Shall Section 11 of Article I (Bill of Rights) of the Constitution of Virginia be amended (i) to require that eminent domain only be exercised where the property taken or damaged is for public use and, except for utilities or the elimination of a public nuisance, not where the primary use is for private gain, private benefit, private increasing jobs, increasing tax revenue, or economic development; (ii) to define what is included in just compensation for such taking or damaging of property; and (iii) to prohibit the taking or damaging of more private property than is necessary for the public use?” Voters will be asked to choose “Yes” or “No.” If a majority of Virginia voters approve the proposed amendment, then the state constitution will be changed to incorporate the new language. The changes will go into effect Jan. 1, 2013. Essentially, the amendment will cement the following protections for Virginia’s landowners: • No more private property can be taken than is necessary to achieve a stated public use.


Yard signs are being distributed to encourage voters to amend Virginia’s constitution on Nov. 6.

Virginia Farm Bureau News

Farm Bureau members urging communities to vote ‘Yes’ on Question 1 By Kathy Dixon Lewis Ashton is talking about Question 1 to his neighbors, to people at church and, really, to anyone who will listen. “I’m talking about it to everyone,” Ashton said enthusiastically. The King George County Farm Bureau president wants voters to understand Question 1 that will be on the Nov. 6 ballot. “I want them to go to the polls already knowing why they should vote ‘Yes.’” Question 1 proposes amending Virginia’s constitution to protect private property owners from eminent domain abuse. The amendment has three provisions: that no more private property may be taken than is necessary to achieve a stated public use; that the condemner will have to prove that the use is public; and that fair compensation is given to the property owner. Condemning entities such as highway departments or utility companies would not be able to exercise eminent domain if the primary use for taking land is for private gain, private benefit, private enterprise, increasing jobs or boosting tax revenue or economic development, explained Trey Davis, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation assistant director of governmental relations. “Whatever property you own or rent, if this passes, you can rest assured that your private property rights will be forever enshrined in the constitution.” Farm Bureau members are being encouraged to spread the word with campaign-style signs, fliers and word of mouth. Many county Farm Bureaus have

purchased signs to distribute during their annual meetings and picnics. Ashton, whose county Farm Bureau purchased 100 signs, plans to take signs to the annual meeting and to the King George farmers’ market. He said both are opportunities to educate associate people about the need to constitutionally protect private property from eminent domain abuse. “That spreads the word around pretty good.” Gov. Bob McDonnell signed legislation July 16 to place the constitutional amendment on this fall’s ballot, and a coalition has been formed to educate voters on how Question 1 will curb eminent domain abuse. Members of the “Vote Yes for Private Property Rights” campaign include Farm Bureau, the Virginia Agribusiness Council, the Virginia Forestry Association, Virginia Poultry Federation, Americans for Prosperity, the Family Foundation of Virginia and the National Federation of Independent Businesses. “Property rights is one of the underpinnings of any other rights that people have,” said Ann Heidig, president of the Spotsylvania County Farm Bureau. She recently was elected to the Spotsylvania County Board of Supervisors, which voted to support the amendment. As a supervisor and county Farm Bureau president, Heidig is determined to help the legislation pass. She said the Spotsylvania Farm Bureau Women’s Committee handed out fliers at the county’s Stars and Stripes Spectacular, which drew nearly 20,000 people. The county Farm Bureau is buying signs to

‘Whatever property you own or rent, if this passes, you can rest assured that your private property rights will be forever enshrined in the constitution.’ »

Trey Davis, assistant director of governmental relations, VFBF

display, and members may help hand out literature at polling places on Election Day. Sometimes voters go to the polls and are not familiar with a referendum on which they are voting. “Voters get confused and are not sure what it means,” said Thomas Graves, an Orange County beef cattle farmer and member of the VFBF board of directors. “Some don’t vote because of that. We want to make sure that before they get to the polling places, they understand the importance of voting ‘Yes’ on Question 1.”

september/october 2012



Your Membership Advantage -SAVING YOU MONEY >> Your Farm Bureau membership helps support the farmers who grow our

nation’s food. It also gives you access to a wide variety of benefits and services, and it can pay for itself quickly in savings and convenience! travel advantages Avis Save up to 25% on daily and weekly rates. Visit, or call 800-331-1212 and use Avis Worldwide Discount #A298846 when scheduling a rental. Choice Hotels Use Choice Hotels’ Significant Organization Savings plan and get a 20% discount at participating locations. Visit, or call 800-258-2847 and use ID 00220000 . Advance reservations required. Wyndham Hotel Group Get 20% off “best available rates” at participating locations. Call 877-670-7088, and use ID 000000513. Advance reservations required. Children’s Museum of Richmond memberships Save 25% on any annual museum membership purchased at the museum or its satellite location. Visit membership. Travel Counsellors, Inc. Enjoy exclusive escorted tours for Farm Bureau members. Visit, or call 800-572-4049.

Member Benefit

healthy advantages Member’s Medical Alert Help ensure that your or a loved one can summon help at home in an emergency. Get free shipping, a 30-day, money-back trial and no long-term contract. Visit or call 877-288-4958, and use code FB102. Prescription Drug Discount Save on more than 12,000 prescription drug products, at more than 53,000 pharmacies nationwide. Obtain a discount card from your county Farm Bureau, and find a participating pharmacy near you at QualSight LASIK Save up to 50 percent off the national average cost of LASIK vision correction. Visit, or call 866-979-9575 to schedule an initial appointment with a participating doctor near you.

Financial Advantages Farm Bureau Bank Full member banking services. Contact your county Farm Bureau office, visit or call 800-492-FARM for more information.

Home and Business Advantages Grainger Get 10% off any item in the Grainger industrial supply catalog. Order online at and qualify for free shipping, or call 877-202-2594. Reference Discount #809039274.

Producer Advantages Producer members also have access to these benefits and services: • Commodity marketing representation • Grain marketing services • Risk management assistance • Farm tires and parts

ClearValue Hearing Save up to 25% on Starkey hearing instruments. To learn more and find a ClearValue provider near you, visit or call 888-497-7447.

>> For more information about all of the services included in your Membership Advantage, call your county Farm Bureau office today or visit

In the Garden

A little planning can pay off in fall colors

To find the station nearest you that airs Real Virginia, or to view the show online, visit

The colors of coleus (top and above right), double impatiens (above left) and Rose of Sharon (right) can liven up a sedate pre-winter landscape. The coleus and impatiens, however, will need a little attention to get them through a Virginia winter.


Planting sedum, coleus and impatiens or butterfly bushes and Rose of Sharon in bright, fall colors can add a splash of color to a sedate, pre-winter landscape, said horticulturalist Mark Viette. He suggested placing flowers between shrubs and using different varieties of plants when designing for fall color. And he noted that some plants, like coleus and impatiens, might need some winter accommodations. “Tender tropical annuals and perennials just cannot take the frosts we have in Virginia,” Viette said, but you can save your plants from year to year by putting them and storing them in a temperaturecontrolled environment. Before frost becomes an issue, dig up the entire plant, and place it in a pot. Put pots in a crate that has holes in it, and store them in a basement or a temperaturecontrolled garage. They can be replanted in late June. Viette recommended planting them in groups of five for visual impact. “These plants may not look great during the summer, but they will show up well from August into late November.” In addition to sedum, coleus and impatiens, Viette recommends doubleflower impatiens that look like roses and the blackberry lily, which has perennial seed pods that resemble blackberries.

Mark Viette appears on Real Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau’s monthly television program. Viette and his father operate the Andre Viette Farm and Nursery in Augusta County and have a live radio show broadcast by more than 60 mid-Atlantic stations each Saturday morning. They also are members of the Augusta County Farm Bureau. Andre Viette currently serves on the organization’s board of directors and on the Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Ornamental Horticulture Advisory Committee, and Mark Viette is a former Augusta Farm Bureau board member. september/october 2012


Viewing Virginia

Candidates for Senate discuss issues of interest to farm families By Sara Owens U.S. Senate candidates George Allen and Tim Kaine pledged support for U.S. agriculture and forestry July 27 at the Agriculture and Forestry U.S. Senate Candidates Forum. The event was hosted by the Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers Committee and sponsored by Farm Bureau, the Virginia Agribusiness Council, the Virginia Forest Products Association and the Virginia Forestry Association. Both candidates are former Virginia governors. They addressed topics such as agricultural programs and education, environmental policy, farm transitions and estate taxes, and federal health care policy. On the issue of farm transitions and the federal estate tax Allen said he believes “the death tax should get the death penalty. “Death shouldn’t be a taxable event. The sale of an asset ought to be the taxable event. To quote Patrick Henry, ‘No taxation without respiration.’ Farmers and those with forestry property are often the ones who are most affected by this, and passing on a business or farm to a son or a daughter matters a lot.” Kaine noted that he worked to get rid of Virginia’s estate tax but has not taken a position on the national estate tax. “I believe in reforming estate tax so we don’t trip up the meaningful transition of farmlands within families,” he said. “Whether looking at thresholds or safe harbor passage of real estate, especially when it’s passing on farms and forest, I’m really open to those forms of reforms. I’m open to helping farmers.” Regarding federal health care policy, Kaine said he would not vote to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act but he is in favor of amending it. He said the act already is benefiting many Americans, including those on 8

Virginia Farm Bureau News

“I believe in reforming estate tax so we don’t trip up the meaningful transition of farmlands within families,” Democrat Tim Kaine told forum participants.

“Death shouldn’t be a taxable event. The sale of an asset ought to be the taxable event,” Republican George Allen said of the federal estate tax.

Both candidates are former Virginia

Medicare, young adults who are able to stay on their parents’ health insurance policies, and rural communities and federal community health centers that are receiving funds to expand their services. “So I would not repeal it; I absolutely would not. I do not want to see insurance companies using the club of preexisting conditions,” Kaine said. Allen said he would vote to repeal the act. “I’d like to be the 51st vote to repeal it,” he said. Allen added that he, like Kaine, is in favor of allowing children to remain on their parents’ policies until age 26. “This is the worst job market for young people

governors. They addressed topics such as agricultural programs and education, environmental policy, farm transitions and estate taxes, and federal health care policy. since World War II. Young people are either underemployed or unemployed and won’t be able to get health insurance.” Allen said he favors the use of health savings accounts to cover major medical bills, as well as allowing states more flexibility in running the Medicaid program.

Viewing Virginia

Virginia jumps into top 10 farmers’ market states The number of U.S. farmers’ markets continues to increase, and Virginia now has enough to place it among the nation’s top 10 market states. The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced that the number of direct-sales markets has increased 9.6 percent in the past year. Virginia markets have increased to 227, tying it for ninth place with Iowa. After 18 years of steady increases, the number of farmers’ markets across the country now registered with the USDA is 7,864. In 1994, there were 1,744. The country’s top agricultural producing state, California, leads the nation with 827 farmers’ markets. The mid-Atlantic, Northeast and Southeast saw the biggest percentage growth in markets, reporting Virginia is tied for ninth place. 15.8 percent, 14.4 percent and 13.1 percent jumps in participation, respectively. “The growth in the number of farmers’ markets over the past few years has been phenomenal; every time you think it might be hitting a peak, it surges again,” said Spencer Neale, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation commodity marketing specialist. “For agriculture it’s a win-win. An entire generation of Americans is connecting with farmers and learning about agriculture.”

New guide offers forestland management information A new guide has been published to help farmers and timber owners with limited resources to manage their land economically. Profitable Farms and Woodlands: A Practical Guide in Agroforestry A Practical Guide in Agroforestry for for Landowners, Farmers and Ranchers was written as a practical Landowners, Farmers and Ranchers guide to assist small farmers and woodland owners in the Southeast to adopt best management practices. This guide was prepared by an agroforestry team of research and extension specialists from land grant universities in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture National Agroforestry Center. It depicts step-by-step methods and principles for developing agroforestry practices such as alley cropping, forest farming, riparian buffer strips, silvopasture and windbreaks. It also provides information on ways to make money with forestland. “I think most of us under-manage our woodlands, so this guide is a good idea,” said Justin Mackay-Smith, a Clarke County forestland owner and member of the Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Natural Environmental Resources and Forestry Advisory Committee. “If you can use your forestland better, that’s a good thing.” The 108-page guide is available for downloading at 7YVÄ[HISL-HYTZ HUK>VVKSHUKZ

State vet announces new requirements for livestock entering Virginia According to Dr. Richard Wilkes, state veterinarian with the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services, effective Aug. 15, breeding-age cattle coming into Virginia from other states must be tuberculosis test negative and properly identified. Imported cattle 18 months of age or older without negative TB test results and proper identification will be quarantined until negative TB tests are conducted and official identification has been applied to each animal and submitted to the VDACS regional Office of Veterinary Services. Acceptable TB tests include individual animal testing within 60 days prior to entering Virginia or an annual whole-herd test for cattle originating from TB-accredited herds. On Jan. 18, updated regulations regarding the health requirements for importing animals into Virginia became effective. Bovine TB testing on cattle that do not originate from a TB-accredited herd, as well as official individual identification, are now required on all cattle older than 18 months of age coming into Virginia. Once the most prevalent infectious disease of cattle and swine in the United States, bovine TB caused more losses among U.S. farm animals in the early part of the 20th century than all other infectious diseases combined. Since 1917, cooperative efforts of states and the U.S. Department of Agriculture have nearly eradicated bovine TB from the nation’s livestock population. Within the past several years, bovine TB has been newly diagnosed in at least 10 states that previously were considered to be free of the disease. Details on Virginia’s animal import regulations are available at vdacs.

september/october 2012


Signage outside The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County makes it abundantly clear that the State Fair of Virginia will take place this year.


“We do not take this challenge lightly,” Virginia Farm Bureau President Wayne F. Pryor said of partnering to present the fair.

By Kathy Dixon Retaining an agricultural presence at the State Fair of Virginia is what a new partnership between Virginia Farm Bureau Federation and Universal Fairs LLC is all about. “This partnership will help retain, grow and build the agricultural presence at the State Fair for years to come,” said VFBF President Wayne F. Pryor. “We’ve never embarked on a venture like this, but we do not take this challenge lightly, and we plan to make the fair a success.” Farm Bureau and Tennessee-based Universal Fairs, which bought the fair and The Meadow Event Park at auction in May, have formed Commonwealth Fairs & Events LLC, which will present this year’s fair from Sept. 28 through Oct. 7.

Commonwealth Fairs & Events plans to sponsor other happenings throughout the year as well, and it hopes to revive and support efforts to build a horse museum on the 331-acre site in Caroline County. The Meadow Event Park is the birthplace of racing thoroughbreds Riva Ridge and Secretariat. “We want people all over the nation to recognize the importance of this property and its legacy,” Pryor said. Discussions are under way to boost equine events at The Meadow Event Park and possibly hold a 2013 celebration to mark the 40th anniversary of Secretariat’s Triple Crown win. “We’re very excited about all the opportunities,” Lovell said. “We think you’re going to see great things over the next few years, so just hang on.” Universal Fairs’ other events include large fairs in Tennessee, Georgia and Washington state and a variety of boat and sporting shows and expos throughout the United States.

New ag-related events In addition to the fair, Farm Bureau is planning the 5K Stampede, a 5-kilometer run and walk that will benefit the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom. And on Oct. 3, the Real Virginia Virtual Farm Tour will be held at the fair. The tour will engage families with a live online discussion about farming practices. Viewers can get questions answered by a panel of farm experts and will be able to “tour” a half-dozen Virginia farms via video. At each farm, the owners will be on camera to describe their operations. “Being the state’s largest farm organization, we felt it was paramount to step up to the plate and assist with the fair,” Pryor said.

“We think you’re going to see great things over the next few years,” said Universal Fairs LLC President Mark Lovell.

Why get involved? “When we first learned that the fair was going to go bankrupt, we started scratching our heads and thinking about how Farm Bureau could get involved and help preserve a 150-year tradition,” said Greg Hicks, VFBF vice president of communications. “The fair is a great tool for teaching the public about agriculture and the importance of the industry to our commonwealth. That dovetails with our goal of helping to preserve agriculture.”

september/october 2012


Fair Information Some frequently asked questions

Saturday, Sept. 29:

10 a.m.–10 p.m.

Commonwealth Fairs & Events LLC will be governed by a board of members (the limited liability corporation equivalent of a board of directors). It will consist of members selected by Universal Fairs, members selected by Virginia Farm Bureau Federation and an outside individual.

Sunday, Sept. 30:

Noon–9 p.m.

Monday, Oct. 1:

10 a.m.–9 p.m.

Tuesday, Oct. 2:

10 a.m.–9 p.m.

Oct. 3 will be Va. Farm Bureau Day at State Fair Stop by your county Farm Bureau office to receive a coupon good for one-third off the cost of a weekday adult admission and single-day unlimited ride wristband at the State Fair of Virginia on Virginia Farm Bureau Day, Oct. 3 Members who present a coupon will receive $4 off the regular weekday adult admission price of $12, and $7 off the regular single-day unlimited ride wristband price of $21. There is a limit of one admission and wristband per coupon, and the offer is valid at The Meadow Event Park on Oct. 3 only. This offer is not valid with any other offer or discount. Coupons must be presented at time of purchase and cannot be resold or redistributed.*

Virginia Farm Bureau News

2–10 p.m.

Friday, Sept. 28:

As in the past, we expect to have a strong Farm Bureau presence at the State Fair.


Box office hours

Who controls the new fair partnership?

Will Farm Bureau employees and volunteers from county Farm Bureaus still be involved with Farm Bureau’s presence at the fair?

Retired racing thoroughbred Covert Action, a grandson of Secretariat, was present at a July news conference announcing the new State Fair of Virginia.

State Fair of Virginia

* Prices, policies, programs, schedules and concerts are subject to change or cancellation without notice. No pets. No refunds. No rainchecks. SFVA reserves the right to refuse admission.

Wednesday, Oct. 3: 10 a.m.–9 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 4:

10 a.m.–9 p.m.

Friday, Oct. 5:

10 a.m.–10 p.m.

Saturday, Oct. 6:

10 a.m.–10 p.m.

Sunday, Oct. 7:

Noon–9 p.m.

Note: Agricultural exhibits will close at 8 p.m. Rides will continue to operate for a minimum of one hour after the box office closes.

Gate admission • Children 4 and younger admitted free • Ride tickets or wristbands not included in admission price • Unlimited ride wristbands: $21 • Single ride tickets and sheets of ride tickets available for purchase as well Monday-Friday Youth (5-12):


Monday-Friday Adult (13 & older):


Monday-Friday Senior (60 & older): $8 Monday-Friday Military (ID required):


Saturday-Sunday Youth (5-12):


Saturday-Sunday Adult (13 & older): $15 Saturday-Sunday Senior (60 & older): $10 Saturday-Sunday Military (ID required):


The Meadow Event Park 13111 Dawn Blvd. Doswell, VA 23047 For details on shows, music and other attractions, visit the fair website at, and the fair’s Facebook page. You can follow the fair on Twitter as well!

Virtual tour will be one of many ag-related events at fair


ringing farms to the State Fair is one way Virginia Farm Bureau Federation plans to educate Virginians about the state’s largest industry. While bringing actual farms is physically impossible, offering virtual farm tours is not. That’s why the organization will host the Real Virginia Farm Tour Oct. 3 at the State Fair of Virginia. The virtual tour includes footage of half a dozen different Virginia farms during a special Web event at 6:30 p.m. in the Pavilion. “The average Virginian is pretty far-removed from agriculture. And we believe that getting accurate information about farming operations will help them understand and appreciate the importance of this industry in their daily lives,” explained Greg Hicks, VFBF vice president of communications. ”We realize that not everyone has access to a farm or has time to visit one. That’s why we’ve sent our staff out to a variety of Virginia farms to report the farmers’ stories to the public. “This way people can visit six different farms in one hour—from the comfort of their home or from the State Fair.” You can participate several different ways, including attending the event live, watching the live feed online at, or submitting questions to The virtual tours will include a Rockbridge County beef cattle business, a Hanover County dairy, an Accomack County vegetable farm, a Cumberland County poultry operation, a Spotsylvania County produce farm and a Buckingham County pork operation. A panel of farmers and other agricultural experts will be on hand at the fair to answer participants’ questions. This event is one way VFBF is trying to engage Virginia consumers in a national conversation between farmers and their customers. A national dialogue is the goal of the U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance, of which Farm Bureau is a member.

september/october 2012


2012 Yo u n g F a r m e r s S u m m e r E x p o

Summer Expo takes YOUNG FARMERS to farms across Southside Gardner Heifers of Bedford County was a tour stop during this year’s Young Farmers Summer Expo.

Articles and photography by Sara Owens Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers got a close-up look at agriculture in Southside during this year’s Young Farmers Summer Expo, held July 27 and 28. Participants visited the Olde Dominion Agricultural Complex; Briar View Farms, which has cattle and poultry; Van Der Hyde Dairy; Gardner Heifers, which specializes in replacement dairy heifers; Royal Oak Farm LLC, which creates compost, compost-based specialty soils and animal feed; Knoll Crest Farm, which produces beef cattle; and the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services’ 14

Virginia Farm Bureau News

State Veterinary Laboratory in Lynchburg. Workshop speakers addressed social media for farmers; risk management issues; genetics for improving forage utilization; and farm transition. The event, now in its seventh year, drew about 200 participants. It was based at Central Virginia Community College in Lynchburg and also included Discussion Meet semifinals and judging for annual Young Farmers awards, which were presented July 28. The Summer Expo is held in a different part of Virginia each year, affording

participants a close-up look at different kinds of farming and regional practices. “The expo is a great time to network with other young farmers and let stress off and just enjoy seeing other people in the industry and to visit other farming operations,” said Jonathan Cavin, a Lee County beef, produce and tobacco farmer. “The workshops were very helpful, and the tours allow you to see the diversity of the operations in a specific area and what is going on in different parts of the state. Plus you gain new ideas to take home.”

2012 Yo u n g F a r m e r s S u m m e r E x p o

Farm Bureau Young Farmers are 18 to 35 years old, and Summer Expo participants typically include numerous students.

Sam Gardner (left) and his father, Don Gardner (seated), shared information about Gardner Heifers with farm tour participants.

september/october 2012


2012 Yo u n g F a r m e r s S u m m e r E x p o

YOUNG FARMERS recognize their peers’ accomplishments Shenandoah County man wins Excellence in Agriculture Award

Two couples honored with Environmental Stewardship Award

Dana Fisher of Shenandoah County was named this year’s Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers Excellence in Agriculture Award winner.

Adam and Holly Dean of Lee County and C.J. and Jessica Isbell of Hanover County were the winners of this year’s VFBF Young Farmers Environmental Stewardship Award. The award recognizes the efforts of young producers who work to protect natural resources. The Deans farm in the evenings as a second full-time job. Adam Dean is a high school teacher and partners with his father on their cattle farm. The Deans created new grazing plans that not only protect the environment but also reduce the time spent chasing and checking cattle. Their farm was featured in a Daniel Boone Soil and Water Conservation District fall pasture walk. The Isbells and C.J.’s father work on his grandfather’s farm. Together, they reclaimed the family farm by establishing a new grass-fed cattle, pork and chicken operation on land that previously was rented to local grain farmers. With help from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Resources Conservation Service, the farm has become a showplace for environmental stewardship practices.

Dana Fisher

The award recognizes individuals for involvement in agriculture, leadership ability and involvement and participation in Farm Bureau and other organizations. Fisher is an agriculture instructor who teaches classes in leadership, horticulture, natural resources and the foundations of agriculture. He also is an FFA advisor and has served on the FFA Foundation board in several roles. He chairs his county Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers Committee and has served on the VFBF Young Farmers Committee for the past three years. Charles “Chip” Jones of Westmoreland County is this year’s runner-up. Jones is a commercial loan officer for Union First Market Bank and has served two tours of duty in Iraq as a member of the Virginia National Guard. He grew up on a grain and vegetable farm and serves on the boards for the Northern Neck Farm Museum, Northern Neck Land Conservancy and Northern Neck Soil and Water Conservation District.

Pittsylvania County man named Outstanding Young Farm Employee

Adam and Holly Dean

Jessica and C.J. Isbell

James Van Der Hyde of Pittsylvania County is the winner of this year’s VFBF Young Farmers Outstanding Young Farm Employee Award. The award was created to recognize successful young agriculturalists for their commitment to production agriculture through on-farm employment. The ideal candidate is an individual who works full time or part time on a farm, is not a majority owner in the operation and has an impact on the overall far m success. Van Der Hyde works at a large dairy where he examines herd health; responds with needed treatment; and assists with maintenance and construction and all aspects of growing and harvesting forages. James Van Der Hyde


Virginia Farm Bureau News

2012 Yo u n g F a r m e r s S u m m e r E x p o

Culpeper County student wins Outstanding Young Agriculturalist Award Jillian Lowery of Culpeper County has been named this year’s VFBF Outstanding Young Agriculturalist.

Discussion Meet finalists Charles “Chip” Jones (left) of Westmoreland County and Jason Pratt of Smyth County will compete in November, along with Justin Cruise of Westmoreland County and Chris Van Vlack of Loudoun County.

Finalists named for Discussion Meet Jillian Lowery

The Outstanding Young Agriculturalist Award, which is co-sponsored by the Young Farmers Committee and Women’s Committee, recognizes high school juniors and seniors for academic, community and agribusiness achievement. Lowery is working on her associate’s degree in science at Lord Fairfax Community College and hopes to attended Virginia Tech in 2013 to study animal and poultry science and agribusiness. She has a small farm where she raises show-quality Nigerian dwarf dairy goats. She shows her goats in 4-H competitions, has won three scholarships through the State Fair of Virginia and recently was tapped into 4-H All Stars. “I am so thankful for the many opportunities that I have had throughout my goat-raising experience, the working relations I have with my mentor/veterinarian and the many people who have helped me along the way,” Lowery said. “The time spent as a participant at the Virginia Governor’s School for Agriculture last summer cemented my goal to continue to work to grow agriculture’s future and promote the dairy goat as a key element.”

Semifinals for this year’s Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers Discussion Meet took place July 28, and four participants will compete for the state title in November. Finalists are Justin Cruise of Westmoreland County, Charles “Chip” Jones of Westmoreland County, Jason Pratt of Smyth County and Chris Van Vlack of Loudoun County. The Discussion Meet is a committee-style discussion of a predetermined agricultural topic. Participants are judged on their ability to build consensus and work toward solutions. The final Discussion Meet round will be held during the VFBF Annual Convention in Chantilly.

Nomination deadline for 2013 Young Farmers awards Dec. 1 is the nomination deadline for the following 2013 Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers recognitions: • Achievement Award; • Excellence in Agriculture Award; • Environmental Stewardship Award; and • Outstanding Young Farm Employee. For nomination forms and guidelines, visit

Winter Expo will be held in Harrisonburg The Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers Winter Expo will be held Feb. 22-24 in Harrisonburg. For more information, visit

september/october 2012


2012 Yo u n g F a r m e r s S u m m e r E x p o

Farm transition planning: ‘Everyone has a different path’ Talking about estates and business transitions can be a sensitive subject for some families. Others are eager to help the next generation keep farming. When Don and Susan Gardner’s sons, Sam and Andy, expressed an interest in coming back to work on the family’s Bedford County farm, it was easy for them to give up control. “I was thrilled my kids wanted to farm,” said Susan Gardner, who spoke during a farm transition panel workshop at the Virginia Farm Bureau Federation Young Farmers Summer Expo. “It wasn’t hard for me to give away the farming business or create the farming business. We didn’t give it away; they created it.” Together, the family created a partnership plan, a limited liability corporation between an elder farmer and a next-generation farmer in which both contribute their equipment and livestock to the partnership. In the beginning, Don and Susan Gardner were major partners. They later saw the need to distribute the money equally between all involved parties. “We gifted away the value that we had in that equipment to the corporation,” Susan Gardner said. “We also have a will, and everything goes into a revocable living trust so that the boys can run the farm. We’re very fortunate that everyone agrees what to do. Anyone can sign a check, and it’s really not a power thing at all.”

The Johnson family, also of Bedford County, has more of a long-term, open plan, said W.P. Johnson. “Over the last few years my father has stopped most of the decision-making, and he had some health issues and sat down one day and said he wanted me to continue on with the farm. He said when he dies, if he has anything left, he wants me and my sister to work it out.” The Johnsons are moving toward an inheritance plan, documented in the senior farmer’s will to state that the next generation will inherit the entire farm. “Everyone has a different path. If you can get (the Gardners’) style of path, go for it,” Johnson said. “I highly recommend it based on what I’ve learned and what I can see; this is the better way. But not everyone will agree to it. “But don’t give up just because they won’t agree to a defined track. It happens; it’s slow.” David Black, a certified public accountant for Young, Nicholas, Branner & Phillips LLP who works with the Gardner family, said there are many different options when it comes to farm transition planning. “You want to put together a specific plan for that family, one that works and that the family will be comfortable with,” Black said. “If the retiring farmer isn’t comfortable, it’s not going anywhere. If they can’t see an exit strategy and see that they are maintained until their retirement years and beyond, it’s going to sit there.”

Black said he recommends giving 100 percent of the operation over to the younger generation before death so that when a senior farmer passes away, the younger farmer is dealing with real estate and buildings only. He said families also need to decide whether the farm operation is large enough to support two families. “If the farm has always supported one family and the cash flow won’t support two, you can branch the operation off into another business,” Black said. “The No. 1 rule is you don’t want to put too much stress on a farm to where it can’t support the families it is trying to support.” Black said even a parent or grandparent who isn’t willing to take immediate action should have a will.

Key transition points to keep in mind: • Consider your long-term objectives for the farm. • Assemble a team of professionals, such as lawyer and accountant you trust who are familiar with farming. • Be open and honest with your family about your expectations. • Allow enough time to evaluate all of your expectations. • Consider cash flow in order to meet your retirement needs.

Farm transition panelists (from left) Susan Gardner of Bedford County; her son Sam; their accountant, David Black; and producer W. P. Johnson, also of Bedford, shared steps the Gardner and Johnson families have taken to pass farm businesses from one generation to the next.


Virginia Farm Bureau News

New Farmer Ben book features trip to the fair As Virginia’s agriculture community gears up for the State Fair of Virginia, Agriculture in the Classroom in putting the finishing touches on a new, fairthemed book featuring Farmer Ben and his family. Kelly’s Big Day should be available for purchase by December and follows Ready! Set! GROW!, published by AITC in 2010. The new book follows Farmer Ben’s teenage daughter, Kelly, as she prepares to show her cow, Molly, at the county fair. It also shows Kelly’s younger brother, Mark, preparing to participate in the crop judging competition. The book was written by AITC senior education programmer Tammy Maxey. “We’re pleased to be able to address several relevant issues in this new book, including farm animal care, the diversity of Virginia agriculture and the agricultural heritage of county fairs,” said AITC Executive Director Karen Davis. “Volunteers from county Farm Bureaus were quick to embrace the first Farmer Ben book, and we hope they will be as enthusiastic about this one as well.”


AITC SUPPORTERS In addition to many individuals who contributed, these organizations made contributions to the Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom between July 1 and Aug. 20. • Arthur W. Perdue Foundation Inc. • Dominion Foundation • Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services • Virginia Farm Credit Association Find more information about AITC at Donations to the AITC program are always welcome and can be mailed to AITC, P.O. Box 27552, Richmond, VA 23261.

Kelly’s Big Day will be AITC’s 2013 recommended children’s book for Agriculture Literacy Week, and a companion coloring and activity book is being developed. AITC developed the Farmer Ben character and his family in response to volunteer requests for a character that would appeal to children and serve as an agriculture

spokesperson. Farmer Ben, his family and their dog, Sandy, live on the farm his family has operated for many years. Farmer Ben pencils, stickers and educational bulletins, as well as copies of Ready! Set! GROW!, are available for volunteers on the AITC website at

Stampede 5K set for Oct. 7 at State Fair The Virginia Foundation for Agriculture in the Classroom will hold its first benefit Stampede 5K at 8 a.m. on Oct. 7 on the grounds of the State Fair of Virginia at The Meadow Event Park in Caroline County. Proceeds will benefit AITC’s work to help educate Virginia children about the vital role agriculture plays in their well-being and everyday lives. The Stampede 5K will include a chiptimed 5-kilometer race, a kids’ run and a family and pet walk.

Registered participants will receive T-shirts, water stops and breakfast. Registration and sponsorship opportunity information is available at AgInTheClass. org/SupportAITC/Events/Stampede5K. aspx. Details also are available from AITC Development Coordinator Parke Sterling at 804-290-1144 or

september/october 2012


KNOW YOUR LIMITS on the roadways WHEN TRAVELING IN A LARGE TRUCK, it’s important to know your size and weight limits on state and federal roads. The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles’ Virginia’s Size, Weight and Equipment Requirements for Trucks, Trailers and Towed Vehicles booklet outlines size and weight restrictions and is available online at dmv. under “Forms and Publications” as DMV 109. The booklet also is available from local DMV offices. “This guide is a great resource for truck drivers operating on Virginia roadways,” said Andrew Smith, Virginia Farm Bureau Federation senior assistant director of governmental relations. The maximum width for any vehicle on interstate and designated highways is 102 inches, excluding mirrors and any warning devices installed on a school bus. The maximum height for all vehicles is 13 feet 6 inches. For weight, interstate travel is restricted to a maximum of 80,000 pounds; however, motor carriers can purchase an appropriate overload permit to extend their maximum weight by 5 percent to 84,000 pounds to travel on noninterstate highways. Vehicles registered as farm vehicles, also known as F-tag vehicles, can operate as if they purchased the 5 percent permit for free. If they are found to be operating at more than the 5 percent allowance, they must purchase an overload permit. Registered farm vehicles hauling Virginiagrown forest or farm products from the place where they were first produced, harvested or felled to the location where they are first processed also can receive an additional 5 percent extension of the single axle, tandem axle and gross weight limits. Those with “farm use” tags are not eligible for the weight overages. “It really is beneficial to the farmer when he can register his truck as a farm vehicle to get the benefit of extra weight allowances during harvest season,” Smith said.

The Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles offers a booklet that details truck size and weight restrictions.

Some items to keep in mind: • No vehicle can travel on Virginia highways with a single axle weight in excess of 20,000 pounds, tandem axle weight in excess of 34,000 pounds or a gross weight of 80,000 pounds. • Maximum gross weight is determined by the number of axles and the distance between the first axle (steering) and the extreme rear axle. • No permit allows the operation of any vehicle on the federal interstate system with a single axle weight in excess of 20,000 pounds, a tandem axle weight in excess of 34,000 pounds or a gross weight greater than that permitted based on axle spacing or a gross weight, regardless of axle spacing, in excess of 80,000 pounds. 20

Virginia Farm Bureau News

Cleaning equipment can help prevent fires By Sara Owens Make a clean start when using farm equipment this fall; it can go a long way toward preventing fires. “Given the dry conditions we’ve had across the majority of the state, and with a forecast of similar conditions through the harvesting season, farmers are looking at increased chances of equipment fires,” said Jimmy Maass, safety manager for Virginia Farm Bureau. “Crop dust, dirt and debris can build up on machines such as combines, tractors and hay balers, and if the equipment is not kept clean, it can catch on fire.” Make sure the engine is off, the key is removed from the ignition and the parking brake is set before inspecting or cleaning farm machinery. While wearing safety glasses, use a compressed air or leaf blower to thoroughly clean the equipment from top to bottom. Oil and fluid leaks also can cause a fire. “Equipment should be repaired when leaks occur, and residue from leaks should be cleaned off of equipment to prevent a fire,” Maass said. Also, make sure all equipment has properly inflated tires and check all wheel bearings. If tires are not inflated properly or bearings have gone bad they can generate heat, Maass said.

Dry conditions and the dust and plant debris associated with harvesting can increase the risk of equipment fires.

“You should also make sure all belts are in good condition and properly tensioned.” A fully charged water fire extinguisher should be kept on hay balers, and a dry chemical fire extinguisher should be kept on tractors and other equipment. “Fire extinguishers should also be kept by the door of all buildings, including barns, shops and garages,” Maass said.

If a fire does occur, call 911 or the nearest fire department before trying to extinguish the fire. If you begin to experience any health issues such as difficulty breathing, get away from the fire immediately.

Fire extinguisher program helps protect farm equipment Keeping all farm machinery equipped with a fire extinguisher could make the difference between saving the equipment and watching it burn. Virginia Farm Bureau Safety has a program to help protect certain pieces of farm equipment by fire by providing, at no cost to members, one 10-pound ABC-type fire extinguisher with a mounting bracket for each piece of eligible equipment insured by Farm Bureau. Eligible equipment includes self-propelled grain combines; self-propelled haybines; self-propelled forage harvesters; self-propelled cotton pickers; self-propelled peanut combines; and track-type bulldozers.

In addition, should the extinguisher be used, or leak down for any reason, Farm Bureau will have it recharged at no cost. Farm Bureau insurance agents can provide details about the fire extinguisher program and answer questions about properly insuring farm equipment.

Would you rather have a fire extinguisher you don’t need, or need one you don’t have?

september/october 2012


Study shows farmers tough on artificial limbs By Leah Gustafson

Published online in the journal Disability and Rehabilitation: Assistive Technology, When a farmer or rancher is injured on the study is the first to provide detailed the job, there's an 11 percent chance that an information on the limitations facing amputation will occur. farmers and ranchers with That's two and-a-half prosthetics. times more likely than in The study is part of a any other industry. larger research project Most of those at the Northwestern amputations involve University Prostheticsfingers or toes. But Orthotics Center that prosthetic hands, arms, aims to design educational legs, feet and other materials tailored to the devices used by people specific needs of farmers in the agriculture and ranchers and work industry don't seem to with manufacturers to be durable, affordable develop more robust or adaptable enough for products. their lifestyles, according Results of that ongoing Farmwork presents some specific to a new Northwestern research could benefit challenges for designing and using Medicine study. people who work in other a prosthetic limb.

physically demanding professions such as construction, forestry, commercial fishing, mining and manufacturing. "There are a lot of issues and challenges to farming with an artificial limb," said Dr. Stefania Fatone, research associate professor in physical medicine and corresponding author of the study. "They often need to climb ladders and silos, lift bags of feed and seed and walk on uneven terrain, in all kinds of weather conditions. Also, a dairy farmer may have very different needs than a corn farmer or cattle rancher." Researchers conducted intensive one-onone interviews with 40 American farmers and ranchers with amputations to gather information about how current and past artificial limbs were used and the producers’ ability to complete farm tasks. They also interviewed prosthetists who provide services to farmers and ranchers.

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FARM BUREAU offers NEW health care reform-compliant plans with increased benefits for Virginia Farm Bureau members. Our trained staff will help you customize a health care plan to fit your needs and budget. We work with individuals, families and all types of businesses throughout the state of Virginia.

Get the Membership Advantage.


For information on how the changes in health insurance can save you money, call us at 800-229-7779. Virginia Farm Bureau Service Corporation is an independent authorized agent in Virginia for Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield. Anthem Health Plans of Virginia, Inc. trades as Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield in Virginia, and its service area is all of Virginia except for the City of Fairfax, the Town of Vienna, and the area east of State Route 123. Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield and its affiliated HMO HealthKeepers, Inc. are independent licensees of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association.®ANTHEM is a registered trademark. The Blue Cross and Blue Shield names and symbols are registered marks of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association. For exclusions, limitations, terms under which the policy may be continued in force or discontinued, costs and complete details of the coverage, call or write your insurance agent or the company, whichever is applicable.


Virginia Farm Bureau News

“... a dairy farmer may have very different needs than a corn farmer or cattle rancher.” – Dr. Stefania Fatone The study found that the common problems farmers and ranchers face revolve around these themes: • Durability: Lack of durability and utility was the major theme identified. Farmers' prostheses seem to deteriorate faster and fail more frequently than those of nonfarmers with amputations.

consistently educated and trained on the operation of their device. At the same time, some prosthetists reported that farmers had unrealistic expectations of their artificial limbs.

Northwestern’s findings have provided a framework for an even larger study on this issue. Researchers are recruiting U.S. farmers and ranchers with amputations to take part.

• Safety: Farmers reported many falls and secondary injuries due to use of their artificial limbs. Researchers found that many safety problems might be related to durability issues. • Environment: Weather, dirt and rough terrain can be tough on artificial limbs. Farmers reported that artificial limbs sometimes get stuck in mud, caught in weeds and exposed to chemicals, rain, snow and extreme cold and heat. • Adaptation: An artificial limb is not a complete replacement for an intact limb. Farmers reported having to make additional changes in routines, farm equipment and attitude to successfully return to farming after an amputation. • Cost: Artificial limbs are expensive, and farmers and the prosthetists who work with them reported that medical insurance coverage for the devices is often inadequate. Some farmers report having no insurance or high-deductible insurance because they are self-employed or a small business owner. Some farmers have to travel great distances to get to a prosthetist's clinic, which also adds to costs. • Education: Prosthetists are not typically trained about the needs and lifestyles of farmers and ranchers and may prescribe inappropriate prosthetic choices, according to the study. Some farmers indicated that they were not

Leah Gustafson is a marketing specialist for Virginia Farm Bureau Health Care Consultants.

Research on artificial limbs used by farmers could benefit not only producers but also people who work in construction, mining, manufacturing and other physically demanding professions.

september/october 2012



Some call it agriculture. For us, it’s a way of life.




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Virginia Farm Bureau News

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Members can SAVE $500 on purchase or lease of selected GM vehicles Farm Bureau members in Virginia can receive a $500 discount on the purchase or lease of qualifying Buick, Chevrolet and GMC vehicles at participating dealerships. The Farm Bureau GM $500 Vehicle Discount Program is available for members who are at least 18 and have been Farm Bureau members for at least 60 days. The discount is not a rebate and may not be stackable with some other incentives. It must be processed at the time of delivery; GM will not accept certificates on vehicles that already have been delivered. To use this member benefit, visit, enter your membership number and ZIP code, and print out a Farm Bureau Membership Verification Certificate to take to your GM dealership. Members without Internet access can get assistance in acquiring a certificate from their county Farm Bureau offices. See participating GM dealers for full details.

Farm Bureau warehouse stocks farm, truck and auto tires, replacement parts Farm Bureau members in Virginia have access to competitively priced farm, truck and auto tires and many agricultural replacement parts through the Virginia Farm Bureau Service Corp. Products Division. For more than 45 years, the Products Division has provided members with supplies through local Farm Bureau-approved parts dealers and the Farm Bureu warehouse in Henrico County. The warehouse is a 53,000-square-foot facility that serves about 400 dealers throughout Virginia, Maryland and North Carolina, as well as some in West Virginia and Delaware. For information on specific products, call the warehouse at 800-476-8473. Product catalogs are available online









Camaro C


Camaro ZL1


Colorado Corvette Cruze Equinox Express HHR Impala

GMC Acadia Canyon

If you’re wondering what to give someone for a special occasion, consider treating them to the rich flavors of fine Virginia foods in Virginia Farm Bureau’s Virginia’s Harvest collection. Farm Bureau members can share country ham, gourmet peanuts, butter-toasted cashews, peanuts and pecans and chocolate-covered peanuts and peanut brittle. Virginia’s Harvest items can be viewed and ordered at county Farm Bureau offices. For an additional charge, they can be shipped via United Parcel Service with a personalized gift card.

Savana Sierra Terrain

Malibu (including 2013)


Silverado Suburban

Excluded from discount




Chevrolet Volt

Virginia treats make tasty gifts

september/october 2012


Good for You!

Pumpkins pack a vitamin-filled punch By Kathy Dixon Sure, pumpkins make great jack-olanterns, but they also are good to eat. Pumpkins are incredibly rich in antioxidants such as vitamins A, B, C and E, and they contain folate, niacin, potassium and fiber. “The beautiful, rich orange color of pumpkins indicates that they contain an abundance of beta-carotene,” said Crystal Barber, a registered dietitian and Virginia Cooperative Extension family and consumer sciences agent in Portsmouth. The human body converts beta-carotene to vitamin A, which is necessary for vision, fighting infection and promoting cell growth and development. “It is worth noting that pumpkin has another carotenoid called betacryptoxanthin, which has been found to decrease the risk of lung cancer in smokers,” Barber said. Pumpkins are low-calorie and have no saturated fat. One half-cup of cooked, mashed pumpkin contains only 24 calories. “Pumpkin can even be substituted for oil in some quick breads,” Barber said. In order to keep calories low when cooking with pumpkin, she added, be wary of traditional high-fat ingredients like heavy cream. Evaporated skim milk is a good substitute when making pies or other desserts. But don’t stop with the fleshy part of the pumpkin. Its seeds are full of iron, calcium and magnesium and also are a good source of protein and omega-3 fatty acids. “Pumpkin seeds can be roasted as a healthy snack,” Barber said. As with eating any produce, fresh pumpkin is best, but canned pumpkin maintains nutrients during the canning process. Pumpkins can be boiled, ovenroasted and steamed in the microwave, but roasting yields the most pulp.


2 teaspoons olive oil ½ cup chopped onion 2 celery stalks, chopped 2 garlic cloves, minced 1 teaspoon peeled, minced fresh ginger 2 teaspoons sugar ¼ teaspoon ground nutmeg pinch of cinnamon salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste 14.5-ounce can pumpkin 1 potato, peeled and cut into 1" cubes 4 cups vegetable or fat-free, reduced sodium chicken broth ¼ cup nonfat sour cream 2 green onions, chopped

DIRECTIONS In a large stock pot, heat oil over medium-high heat. Add onion, celery, garlic, ginger and sugar, and cook 4 minutes, until tender. Add nutmeg and cinnamon. Season the mixture with salt and pepper, and stir to coat. Add pumpkin, potato and broth. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to medium-low, partially cover and simmer 20 minutes, until pumpkin and potatoes are tender. Ladle soup into bowls, and top each serving with sour cream and green onions.

Source: University of Illinois Extension

Chopped green onions and fresh herbs like thyme or sage are good garnishes for pumpkin soups. So are roasted pumpkin seeds.


Virginia Farm Bureau News

Good for You!

Leave this risotto a little runny before adding the grated Parmesan cheese to ensure a creamy finished texture.

Pumpkin Cheese Risotto INGREDIENTS

7 to 8 cups chicken stock 1 tablespoon butter 1 small onion, finely chopped 2 cups Arborio rice 1½ cups cooked pumpkin, cut into ½" cubes 6 fresh sage leaves, minced salt and pepper to taste ½ cup grated Parmesan cheese 4 sage leaves for garnish

DIRECTIONS In a saucepan, heat stock to a simmer, and hold at a very slow simmer. In a large, heavy-bottomed saucepan, heat the butter and add onion. Cook over medium heat until translucent. Add rice, stir and add 1½ cups of the hot stock. Stir until the rice has absorbed most of the liquid, then add another 1½ cups of the hot stock. Repeat a third time, adding the pumpkin and sage. Repeat with another 1½ cups of hot stock, and add salt and pepper to taste. Continue to stir until most of the stock has been absorbed by the rice. After about 25 to 30 minutes, taste. Adjust the seasoning if necessary. Rice should be firm but tender (al dente). Leave the risotto a little runny before adding the cheese so it will have a creamy texture. Ladle into soup plates and garnish each with a sage leaf.

Source: University of Illinois Extension

Pure pumpkin facts • Pumpkins are fruit. • Pumpkins are 90 percent water. • Pumpkins originated in Central America. • Eighty percent of the pumpkin supply in the United States is available in October. • The largest pumpkin pie ever made was more than 5 feet in diameter and weighed more than 350 pounds. It used 80 pounds of cooked pumpkin, 36 pounds of sugar and 12 dozen eggs and took six hours to bake. Source: Virginia Pumpkin Growers Association

september/october 2012


Heart of the Home

Sweet figs, balsamic vinegar pair for perfect pork sauce

kathy dixon

Pork with a balsamic vinegar, honey and fig sauce “is a little bit unusual, but it all works well in the end,” said food writer Kendra Bailey Morris. The tartness of the vinegar helps balance the sweetness of the honey and figs to make a delicious sauce for a pork tenderloin. Sear the meat before baking it in the oven to seal in juices. Morris also recommends not overcooking the pork. If a meat thermometer reads 145 degrees, the meat is done and will continue to cook more while it rests. “Tenderloin is so versatile and works well with so many things,” Morris said. In addition to pairing well with virtually any type of sauce, pork tenderloin is perfect for making kabobs, and leftover tenderloin makes delicious sandwiches.

Serve this entrée with the quartered figs nestled among the pork slices.


Virginia Farm Bureau News

Glazed Pork Tenderloin with Balsamic Vinegar, Honey & Fresh Figs INGREDIENTS

2 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil salt and pepper 1½ pounds pork tenderloin, trimmed of fat and silver skin 2 tablespoons minced shallots 6 to 8 very ripe Brown Turkey figs, cut into quarters 1 tablespoon garlic, minced ¼ cup honey ¼ cup balsamic vinegar 1 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary, minced 1 teaspoon vanilla extract or 1 vanilla bean, seeds scraped out DIRECTIONS Preheat oven to 375°. In a non-stick sauté pan, heat olive oil. Season the pork loin with salt and pepper, then sear the meat on all sides until it’s golden brown. Remove the meat to a cooling rack set over a sheet pan sprayed with cooking spray or lined with foil (This will make for easier clean-up). Place the pork loin in the center rack of the oven and roast for approximately 20 minutes or until a thermometer reads 145°. Remove the pork from the oven and let it rest. While the pork is cooking, heat the pan with the meat drippings to medium, add the shallots and garlic and cook for 2 minutes. Add the figs, and sauté another couple of minutes or until figs are softened. Remove the figs to a small bowl, and set aside. Add the honey, balsamic vinegar, rosemary and vanilla extract (or vanilla seeds) to the sauté pan. Bring mixture to a simmer, stirring constantly, and cook until thickened like a glaze, about 5 minutes. Cool slightly. Brush the roasted pork loin well with the glaze, and then slice. Place pork on a platter, and nestle the figs in and around the pork pieces. Drizzle with any remaining glaze, and serve.

Notes >> Pork tenderloin does not have to be cooked all the way through; it can remain pink in the middle and still be safe to eat. A slight pinkness in the middle is recommended for better flavor and tenderness. >> If using vanilla beans, scrape the seeds out for the glaze. The leftover pod can be added to the sauce or stored in a canister with sugar to make vanilla-flavored sugar for coffees and desserts. >> As a key ingredient in vinaigrette dressing, balsamic vinegar pairs particularly well with olive, walnut and hazelnut oils. Olive oil and balsamic vinaigrette is outstanding with lobster and scallops, globe artichokes and asparagus. A nut oil and balsamic dressing goes well with winter vegetables such as carrots, turnips, squash and sweet potatoes, as well as cold weather greens such as frisée and radicchio. >> Balsamic vinegar is made from freshly pressed juice of the Trebbiano grape that is boiled down by more than half to a dark syrup laden with sugar, which leads to the distinctive sweetness of the finished vinegar. The syrup is transferred to oak casks to ferment in the open air and then starts a long evaporation and aging process that makes artisan balsamic vinegar unique.

Heart of the Home

Va. squash mellows spicy sausage in risotto dish Butternut Squash & Italian Sausage Risotto INGREDIENTS


6 cups chicken stock 2 tablespoons butter 1 pound butternut squash, peeled, seeded and cut into ½" cubes 1 tablespoon extra virgin olive oil 1 pound spicy Italian sausage, casings removed 1 cup onion, chopped ½ tablespoon fresh sage, minced 2 cups Arborio rice ¼ cup dry white wine salt and pepper to taste ½ cup fresh grated Parmesan cheese, plus more for topping

In a medium pot, warm the chicken stock. In a large saucepan, melt butter and add the cubed squash. Sauté the squash for 8 to 10 minutes or until tender. Remove the squash to a bowl and set aside. Add the olive oil and sausage to the sauté pan, and cook sausage until crumbly. Then remove this mixture to a small bowl and set aside, keeping the drippings in the pan. In the same pan, sauté the onion and sage until onion is translucent. Add the rice, and cook over medium heat until you start to see the grains becoming translucent as well (You might even hear them start to pop). Deglaze the pan with white wine, stirring vigorously. Ladle in the chicken broth about two cups at a time, stirring all the while to make sure the risotto has enough liquid in which to cook. Once the risotto has absorbed the cooking liquid, add more broth, about a cup at a time, still stirring. Repeat that process until rice is almost fully cooked through and has a creamy consistency (You might not need to use all the broth). Finally, stir in the squash, sausage and cheese. You might need to add more broth to give the risotto a creamy texture. Continue to cook, checking for the doneness of the rice. It should have an al dente texture, not crunchy and not too soft. Season the mixture with salt and pepper. Spoon the risotto in bowls and sprinkle with additional cheese. Garnish with a bit of sage.

kathy dixon

The special ingredient in food writer Kendra Bailey Morris’ risotto dish is butternut squash grown in Virginia. “It’s absolutely delicious,” Morris said. “The sweet squash pairs nicely with spicy Italian sausage.” Arborio is a starchy, short-grain rice variety that takes a while to cook but finishes with a creamy texture even when no cream is added. Morris reminded cooks to wait until after the risotto is done to add extra ingredients. “Cook whatever you’re adding ahead of time, and add it at the end, because those ingredients cook faster than the rice.”

Remember to cook risotto ingredients like vegetables first and set them aside to add later. They cook faster than the rice will.

To find the station nearest you that airs Real Virginia, or to view the show online, visit

Kendra Bailey Morris appears each month on Real Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau’s monthly television program, courtesy of Virginia Grown, a program of the Virginia Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services. Morris is an author and culinary instructor whose work appears in Better Homes and Gardens, Food Republic, Virginia Living, Chile Pepper and other publications and is a former food columnist for the Richmond Times-Dispatch. Her blog is at september/october 2012



Help people find your fall and holiday products, with Farm Bureau Fresh If you are a Virginia farmer who direct-markets apples, pumpkins, Christmas trees or other fall produce and freshgrown holiday products, a new Farm Bureau member benefit can make it easier for potential customers to find you. That goes for members who operate fall festivals, hayrides and similar events. Farm Bureau Fresh, based on the Virginia Farm Bureau website at marketplace, lets members place free, searchable listings of up to 45 words. Farm Bureau began promoting Farm Bureau Fresh in July to anyone with an interest in local foods and other farm products. Consumers can use Farm Bureau Fresh to search for products in any of 11 categories, or use a ZIP code to locate all producers in a specific area who

sell to the public. In addition to addresses, phone numbers and farm websites, they’ll be able to access a map and Google travel directions to your farm, stand or other venue. Products currently are being listed in the following categories:

• agritourism; • aquaculture; • bees and honey; • Christmas trees; • CSAs; • flowers; • fruit; • mushrooms; • pick-your-own; • pumpkins; and • vegetables.

FARM BUREAU FRESH listings are available exclusively to Farm Bureau producer members in Virginia, and you can list your products in as many applicable categories as you like. To see how Farm Bureau Fresh works—and then list your farm products for interested buyers—visit

Farm-fresh pumpkins, apples and holiday decorations are among the products consumers can find with Farm Bureau Fresh. 30

Virginia Farm Bureau News


2013 magazine classified ad schedule and policies Members of Virginia Farm Bureau will receive one free 15-word classified ad per membership per year in Virginia Farm Bureau News, which is mailed to producer members, or in Cultivate, which is mailed to associate members. Ads of 16 to 30 words must be accompanied by payment of $20. Any additional ads placed by members in the same calendar year must be accompanied by payment of $10 for 15 words or fewer, or $20 for 16 to 30 words. Ads submitted without payment will be returned. We do not invoice for classified ads or provide proofs or tearsheets. Ads with more than 30 words and ads from nonmembers will not be accepted. Use the form in the January 2013 issue of Virginia Farm Bureau News or the online form at to place your ad. No ads or cancellations will be taken by phone. Ads will be accepted only from members whose membership is current.

Magazine classified ads can be placed in the following five categories only: • Crops; • Farm Equipment; • Hay/Straw; • Livestock; and • Livestock equipment. Classified ads will be published in the following issues: • April Cultivate (mailed to associate members only); • May Farm Bureau News (mailed to producer members only); • July Cultivate (mailed to associate members only); and • August Farm Bureau News (mailed to producer members only).

Watch this!member number Finding your

To view When placing your ad, be sure to include your Farm Bureau member number, which can be found above your name on the mailing label Real Virginia, visit of copy of Virginia Farm Bureau News. All member numbers will be verified.

LEGAL NOTICE Notice of Annual Meeting Virginia Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company The annual meeting of policyholders of Virginia Farm Bureau Mutual Insurance Company will be held at 8:30 a.m., Thursday, November 29, 2012, at the Westfields Marriott Washington Dulles, Chantilly, Virginia, for the following purposes: 1. To receive and act upon the reports of the officers of the Company. 2. To elect a Board of Directors, each to serve for the term of one year. 3. To transact such other business as may properly come before the meeting or any adjournment thereof. Dated this 1st day of October, 2012. Jonathan S. Shouse, Secretary

LEGAL NOTICE Notice of Annual Meeting Virginia Farm Bureau Marketing Association The annual meeting of members of the Virginia Farm Bureau Marketing Association will be held at 8:30 a.m., Thursday, November 29, 2012, at the Westfields Marriott Washington Dulles, Chantilly, Virginia, for the following purposes: 1. To receive and act upon the reports of the officers of the Association. 2. To elect a Board of Directors, each to serve for the term of one year. 3. To transact such other business as may properly come before the meeting or any adjournments thereof. Dated this 1st day of October, 2012. Jonathan S. Shouse, Secretary

September's Real Virginia will feature horses at State Fair, pork producer

Watch this!

To view Real Virginia, visit

The 2012 State Fair of Virginia will be held at The Meadow Event Park, a location significant to Virginia’s horse-racing tradition. Learn about all the fair’s equine connections on Real Virginia, Virginia Farm Bureau’s monthly television program. The September episode also will visit a pork producer’s farm. Plus, food writer Kendra Bailey Morris will incorporate fresh figs into a great pork recipe, and Andy Hankins will take viewers to a Virginia Beach fig farm. Real Virginia airs nationwide at 6:30 p.m. on the first Wednesday of each month on RFD-TV, as well as on 41 cable systems and five broadcast stations in Virginia. It’s also available online at Check local cable listings, or visit for a list of participating stations.

september/october 2012


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September/October 2012 FBN  

Farm Bureau News is published six times a year and offers producer members agricultural news.

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