COVID-19 Impacts Mental Health on the Farm

Ernie Neff Agriculture, Survey

A strong majority of farmers and farmworkers say the COVID-19 pandemic has impacted their mental health, according to a new American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) poll. The poll also indicates that more than half say they are personally experiencing more mental health challenges than they were a year ago. The survey of rural adults and farmers/farmworkers reveals how the pandemic …

SWFREC Recognizes Growers During Farm-City Week

Ernie Neff Agriculture

Nov. 18-25 is National Farm-City Week, a time to recognize and honor the contributions of the country’s agriculturalists and to strengthen the bond between urban and rural citizens. The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Southwest Florida Research and Education Center (SWFREC) took the opportunity to recognize the agriculturists in its area. Some of its statements …

Navigating Generational Differences in Ag

Tacy Callies Agriculture

With more than one generation working side by side on the farm, there are situations that can be tricky to navigate at times. However, it’s important to take the time to look at things through another person’s vantage point and consider how to cater to the strengths of each generation to better the farming operation. The most recent and concluding …

Mental Health in Agriculture Industries

Tacy Callies Agriculture

Agriculture industries have had to adapt to a lot of change in recent months. The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) has created a series of professional development webinars to help these industries navigate the global pandemic. The most recent session of the six-part webinar series featured a panel focused on mental health in rural communities. …

Farm Bureau Young Leaders Class Forming

Ernie Neff Agriculture, Education

Applications are open through July 17 for positions in the 2020-2022 Florida Farm Bureau (FFB) Young Farmers and Ranchers Leadership Group. The group experience develops participants for future leadership positions. It also provides them with opportunities to be involved in various Farm Bureau advocacy events at the local, state and national level. A select group of agriculturists is chosen for …

Protect Outdoor Workers From Heat Illness

Len Wilcox Agriculture, California Corner

California’s Division of Occupational Safety and Health (Cal/OSHA) reminds all employers to protect outdoor workers from heat illness and to monitor high temperature advisories and warnings in their region. California’s heat illness prevention standard applies to all outdoor workers, including those in agriculture, construction and landscaping. Other workers protected by the standard include those that spend a significant amount of …


UF/IFAS Remains Resilient Amid COVID-19 Challenges

Tacy Callies Agriculture

The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) hosted a virtual statewide discussion for stakeholders on June 8 to provide an update on its initiatives. The emphasis was on efforts and issues related to the COVID-19 pandemic. During the webinar, Nick Place, UF/IFAS Extension dean and director, highlighted Extension’s efforts to address the COVID-19 challenges. “This has …

Ag Entrepreneurs Wanted for Competition

Ernie Neff Agriculture

The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) has opened online applications for the 2021 Ag Innovation Challenge. This national business competition showcases U.S. startup companies that are addressing challenges faced by America’s farmers, ranchers and rural communities. Farm Bureau will award $145,000 in startup funds provided by sponsors Farm Credit, John Deere, Bayer Crop Science, Country Financial, Farm Bureau Financial Services …


UF/IFAS Names New VP of Agriculture

Tacy Callies Agriculture, Florida

University of Florida President W. Kent Fuchs announced today that J. Scott Angle will be joining the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) as vice president of agriculture and natural resources. His first day will be July 13, 2020.  “Dr. Angle will oversee UF’s College of Agricultural and Life Sciences with more than 6,000 students, the Florida …

Surveys on Pandemic’s Impacts to Florida Ag

Tacy Callies Agriculture, COVID-19, Survey

The University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) will conduct surveys to better understand how measures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 are impacting Florida agriculture and marine industries. Faculty from the UF/IFAS Food and Resource Economics (FRE) department are deploying surveys to UF/IFAS Extension agents and industry professionals to capture this important information. Citrus growers and …

COVID-19 Info for Agriculture

Ernie Neff Agriculture, COVID-19

Important information for agriculture related to the COVID-19 pandemic was issued from numerous sources this week. A brief summary of some of the information follows. Ray Royce, executive director of Highlands County Citrus Growers Association, addressed Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis’ stay-at-home order that went into effect at midnight on April 2. “All agricultural and agricultural support activities are considered essential …

field heatrings

Public Field Hearings on Seasonal and Perishable Produce Postponed

Daniel Cooper Agriculture, Florida, Food Safety, Georgia, Industry News Release

(USTR) — Consistent with recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the field hearings scheduled in Florida and Georgia on April 7 and April 9 by the U.S. Trade Representative and the U.S. Departments of Agriculture and Commerce will be postponed and rescheduled at a later date. Interested parties are still encouraged to submit written comments and information …


Growers and Representatives Meet

Ernie Neff Agriculture, Legislative

State representatives Byron Donalds and Bob Rommel met with citrus and vegetable growers at a Dec. 16 discussion in Immokalee about local agricultural issues. The event was hosted by the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) Southwest Florida Research and Education Center. Donalds said he wants to be sure IFAS recommendations, on which best management practices …


Jack Payne Announces Retirement

Daniel Cooper Agriculture, Citrus, Citrus Greening, Research

After serving nearly 10 years as the senior vice president for agriculture and natural resources with the University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS), Jack Payne announced he will retire next year. His last day with UF/IFAS will be July 1, 2020. Payne has overseen Extension offices across Florida and its 12 research and education centers since …


Meetings on Algae, Citrus and Water Management Ring Alarms for Florida Agriculture

Daniel Cooper Agriculture, Citrus, Irrigation, Water

Three meetings this week in three different areas of the state brought more discussion that should wake up producers and others in agriculture who have remained mostly silent for decades. As the state’s population continues to swell by a 1,000 new residents each day, Florida’s population will likely exceed 22-million next year. As the nation’s third most populous state, there’s …


Has Farming Become a Political Whipping Boy?

Daniel Cooper Agriculture, business, financial

By Gary Cooper Urban expansion is impacting agriculture throughout the Southeast. Florida appears to be the first state in this region to dramatically shift to a much more urban-thinking electorate. In light of this year’s primary elections, there are some points Florida agriculturists should be thinking about. I know many of you have been pondering some of this already, based …


House Eyes Tax Help for Agriculture Industry

Daniel Cooper Agriculture, hurricane, Industry News Release

Florida’s Hurricane Irma-battered agriculture industry, growing anxious as it awaits federal disaster relief, could land some help from the state House as part of a tax-cut package. The House Ways & Means Committee, which is putting together a package, reviewed three measures Wednesday intended to help the industry, which sustained an estimated $2.5 billion in damages from the deadly September …

Ag Industry Gives Input on Farm Bill

Abbey Taylor Agriculture, Legislative

A House Agriculture Committee listening session, “The Next Farm Bill, Conversations in the Field,” took place on June 24 in Gainesville, Florida. Those who attended the informal farm bill hearing spoke about how they are affected by policies in their daily lives. Farmers, ranchers and stakeholders were encouraged to tell how the bill affects them so that the representatives could …

Troutman Joins Lineup of Florida Ag Commissioner Hopefuls

Daniel Cooper Agriculture, Industry News Release, Legislative

by Lloyd Dunkelberger News Service of Florida Former state Rep. Baxter Troutman entered the race for state agriculture commissioner on Monday, priming his Republican bid for a Cabinet seat with $2.5 million of his own money. “For two decades, I’ve been building a business and continuing my work in Florida agriculture,” Troutman, of Winter Haven, said in a statement. “Real …

AgNet Hosts ‘This Week in Agribusiness’ — An Epilogue

Abbey Taylor Agriculture

By Gary Cooper AgNet Media Founder and President I recently connected with Max Armstrong, host of the nationally syndicated “This Week in Agribusiness” television program, for a fast-paced rural area and farm tour in Central Florida. It turned out to be a great opportunity for all involved, especially for Florida, which deserves more and better national media attention as an …