April 20, 2017

Research: Understanding the Farm Bill

From Kentucky Farm Bureau

As discussions about the 2018 Farm Bill begin around the country and on Capitol Hill, Title VII, specifically known as the Research, Extension, and Related Matters Title, will not likely get much attention outside of the agriculture arena.

But the money that has been put forth for research and extension endeavors has paid big dividends to the farm community as well as the general public.

Dean Nancy Cox of the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment said there are many ways in which the research touches the consumer every day.

UK research reveals list of bee-friendly plants

By Katie Pratt, from UKAgNews

Bernadette Mach, a UK doctoral student, has identified
bee-friendly plants throughout the Ohio Valley region.
A University of Kentucky entomology student has developed a list of bee-friendly trees and shrubs for the Ohio Valley region. The list can help homeowners, who have a desire to participate in bee conservation efforts, find the right plants for their yards.

“This list allows the average homeowner to participate in meaningful bee conservation efforts using science-based plant recommendations,” said Bernadette Mach, a doctoral student in the UK College of Agriculture, Food and Environment who is working with Professor Daniel Potter’s program.

April 17, 2017

UK entomologist offers tips on ticks

By Katie Pratt, from UKAgNews

The American dog tick, left, and the 
lone star tick are most easily identified by their
mouths. The lone star tick's is longer.
A mild winter can have its downsides. One is that more ticks probably survived than normal. The result is more hungry ticks out earlier than usual, according to Lee Townsend, extension entomologist in the University of Kentucky College of Agriculture, Food and Environment.

Typically, warm weather brings ticks out of hiding to find the blood meal they need to continue their life cycle. In the past two weeks, Townsend has received calls about ticks on both people and pets.

The two most common ticks found in the state are lone star tick and the American dog tick. The adult female lone star tick has a white spot on its back. The male is entirely reddish-brown. American dog ticks are reddish-brown with mottled white markings on their backs.
“Most tick bites are itchy nuisances that last for seven to 10 days,” Townsend said.

April 14, 2017

Chefs assigned to Kentucky schools

KDA program aims to help schools use more local foods on menus

Three chefs have begun work with Kentucky schools in the Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s Chefs in Schools program.

“Students who eat a nutritious diet are healthier and better able to learn,” Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles said. “The Chefs in Schools program utilizes professional chefs to help Kentucky schools enhance their food offerings and use more local foods. Students get more nutritious foods, and local farmers and food producers get new markets for their products.”

Chef Judy Gurnee will work with Carter County schools. Gurnee is the chef/owner of a farm-to-fork boutique catering company and is the Farm to Table caterer for Terrapin Hill Farm in Mercer. Gurnee participated in the Chefs in Schools program in 2016 and has served as a guest presenter in national and state events.

April 11, 2017

The hunt for great food gets easier with Buy Local

New KDA program rewards businesses for offering more Kentucky farm-sourced menu items

Kentucky Proud has unveiled Buy Local, a new program intended to encourage restaurants and other food service businesses to purchase locally produced food products, Agriculture Commissioner Ryan Quarles has announced.

“Consumers want foods that are produced close to home,” Commissioner Quarles said. “The Buy Local program is intended to make it easier for food services to meet that demand. It also provides an incentive for distributors that helps ease the logistics of getting these fresh ingredients on patrons’ plates. The Buy Local program will increase economic opportunities for Kentucky farm families, food processors, distributors, and restaurants while offering customers the local foods they crave.”