Columbia Association Announces Video Contest

“Youth in the sheep industry can combine current technology with their passion for Columbia sheep,” says Sara Hildebrandt, President of the Columbia Sheep Breeders Association of America. “It is why the CSBA is sponsoring a program for youth to create videos of their Columbia sheep operation. We are in a day and age where it is easy to take video with the phone in their pocket when they go to the barn. Getting them to promote Columbias and combine this with technology is a progressive thing to do for the sheep industry.”

The program – a first for the association – has at its core the purpose to produce video suitable for public viewing on YouTube and Columbiasheep.org related to Columbia sheep.

Divisions and premiums are the following:

  • Promotion of the breed
  • Promotion of lamb and/or wool
  • Promotion of your own operation

Prizes in each category are $100 for first place, $75 for second place, $50 for third place, $40 for fourth place and $30 for fifth place.

To qualify to win, submissions from junior members only are to be in the form of a link to the video on YouTube, in the form of an iMovie, or .mpg file submitted by midnight EST on June 10, 2019, to dkloostra@gmail.com. Multiple submissions are allowed and all video must be original work of the junior member.

To learn more go to www.columbiasheep.org for rules and judging information.

All videos become the property of the Columbia Sheep Breeders’ Association upon submission. Timing of the contest began with the kick-off at the National Junior Columbia Sheep Association Show in Gillette, Wyo., on June 14 and ends with final judging in June 2019, prior to the 2019 National Columbia Sheep Show and Sale.

“This contest provides junior members the opportunity to showcase so many more diverse aspects of their creativity and talents along with their love for Columbia sheep,” says Manda Geerts, coordinator for the Junior Columbia Association. “We hope juniors blow us away with what we will see and hear.”

From: ASI Weekly June 22, 2018

International Heritage Breeds Week 2018 – Giving Rare Breeds their Jobs Back

Pittsboro, NC, USA  [17 May 2018] – Nearly one in five of the world’s farm animal breeds are at risk of extinction1. The reason? They’re underemployed.

For thousands of years, farmers have carefully bred and raised diverse animals perfectly suited to their corners of the world. These animals are well adapted to local environments and are designed to produce products that meet the needs of local communities. But over the past century, farming in many parts of the world has evolved into highly specialized operations designed to produce as much meat, milk, eggs, fiber, or other products as quickly as possible in order to maximize efficiency. For example, in 1927, the average American Holstein milk cow produced less than 4,500 pounds of milk per year. In 2017, she produced just shy of 23,000 pounds of milk² – more than five times that of just 90 years ago!

While numbers like these are impressive, placing too much emphasis on productivity sometimes leads to traits like drought tolerance, parasite resistance, mothering abilities, fertility, foraging instincts, and even flavor being diminished. Meanwhile, the populations of many slower growing but still incredibly valuable “Heritage” breeds have crashed. Livestock like Wiltshire Horn sheep, Gloucestershire Old Spots pigs, and Oberhasli goats can’t keep up and have now found themselves on endangered lists of conservation organizations around the world. Although Heritage livestock and poultry may not be as efficient as mainstream breeds, they are important sources for valuable genetics and traits, protecting them from being lost. In addition to animals known for food and fiber, rare equines have seen sharp declines, particularly over the past decade. But there is still hope!

20-26 May 2018 has been designated by fifteen livestock conservation organizations around the world as International Heritage Breeds Week to raise awareness about the status of rare farm animals, highlight examples of how they are still relevant to family farms, and bring choice to the marketplace. Breeds like Leicester Longwool sheep, Caspian horses, Tamworth pigs, Aylesbury ducks, Silver rabbits, Spanish chickens, and more than 1,400 other breeds worldwide need our help.

What’s the best way to support these breeds? By giving them a job! Many livestock conservation organizations have compiled directories to help consumers locate products from breeds historically used in their local regions. By purchasing eggs from Heritage chickens, pork from Heritage pigs, milk from Heritage cattle, or wool from Heritage sheep, you encourage farmers to raise more animals, and can discover the difference in the kitchen and on the loom for yourself. According to acclaimed French chef and proponent of Heritage breeds Antoine Westermann “An animal who has pure roots, the life, and food he deserves, offers it back to us in his meat.” By establishing their spot in the marketplace, biodiversity for these Heritage breedsis secured.

To learn more about International Heritage Breeds Week, how you can get involved, and where to locate Heritage breed products in your local area, visit HeritageBreedsWeek.org or call +1 (919) 542-5704. 

###

Once a breed goes extinct, its genetics are lost to history – genetics that farmers may need in the future to combat outbreaks of disease, a changing climate, or genetic issues that arise from livestock being too closely related to each other. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, one domesticated livestock breed is lost every month.¹

Sources:
¹ FAO. (2015). The Second Report on the State of the World’s Animal Genetic Resources for Food and Agriculture. Retrieved from www.fao.org/3/a-i4787e.pdf
² USDA- National Agricultural Statistics Service (2018). Retrieved from https://www.nass.usda.gov/Publications/Todays_Reports/reports/mlkpdi18.pdf

Participating Organizations

 

 


Ryan Walker
Marketing & Communications Manager
The Livestock Conservancy™
​rwalker@LivestockConservancy.org
M: PO Box 477, Pittsboro, NC 27312
P: (919) 542-5704 ext. 102

Editor’s Note:

Images of heritage breeds available for download at: https://tinyurl.com/ycjd5mdf
Interviews available upon request.

Soil Health Enables Climate Beneficial Wool

Rancher Benefits in Multiple Ways from Soil Health

What if, before you purchased a hat or sweater, you knew the wool used to make it came from sheep raised on a ranch managed to improve soil health and increase soil carbon? For nearly a decade, ranch owner Lani Estill has worked with the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service to improve soil health.

By adding carbon-conscious conservation practices to her ranch, the operation now stores more carbon in the soil than it emits through its operations. As a result, her operation, Bare Ranch, is marketing “climate beneficial” wool to a national clothing manufacturer. Estill and her family raise sheep and cattle on her 40,000-acre ranch, which sits on the border of northern California and northwest Nevada.

With help from her local NRCS offices and supported by Environmental Quality Incentives Program contracts, Estill has also improved wildlife habitat on her ranch. She improved sage grouse habitat by removing thousands of acres of invasive juniper and installed hedgerows for pollinators. She and her co-owners also installed fencing and livestock watering facilities and are following a prescribed grazing management plan.

Read the full story at www.usda.gov/blog.

Source: ASI Weekly March 9, 2018
 

Webinar Addresses Going Live on Social Media

The U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance will offer a free webinar entitled How and When to Go Live on Social Channels on Thursday, Oct. 26, from 12:30 to 1:30 p.m. mountain daylight time.

In recent months, the major social channels have all launched live features where users can stream live video straight from their phone, tablet or desktop. In this month’s webinar, USFRA will examine various social channels’ live offerings, and go through when and how to “go live” on each channel.

To register, visit https://events-na2.adobeconnect.com/content/connect/c1/918476373/en/events/event/shared/1010560431/event_landing.html?sco-id=1092837511&_charset_=utf-8.

ASI Wool Council Hosts Military Wool Tour

Wool is one of the world’s most diverse natural fibers. It’s this diversity that has made the United States military the American wool industry’s No. 1 customer.

American Sheep Industry Association Deputy Director Rita Kourlis Samuelson says, “We’re trying to remind people why they use wool. It’s not your grandma’s wool sweater.”

With 18 different characteristics, wool plays an important role in today’s U.S. military.

“Wool is naturally fire resistant, which protects our soldiers when they are exposed to fire hazards. Wool is comfortable in that it breathes. I could go on and on, but there really are so many properties that make it comfortable for a soldier to wear,” says Samuelson.

This week, ASI’s Wool Council hosted a military wool tour in North Carolina and South Carolina with stops at Chargeurs Wool, Burlington Worldwide and Nester Hosiery (known for their all-American brand Farm to Feet).

“We had the wonderful opportunity to explain that we have a good supply of wool that is adequate to meet the military’s specifications,” said ASI Wool Council Chairman Ken Wixom of Idaho. “We have a lot of good, fine wool and we do a good job of producing it for them. This was the perfect way to show that to them first hand.”

Not only is the relationship between the U.S. military and American wool industry an exciting one, it’s also a very important one. And one that all stakeholders involved hope to keep going for years to come.

The United States military is the single largest consumer of American wool in the U.S. and consumes 15 to 20 percent of the annual American wool clip.

Catch videos of the tour online at https://youtu.be/E3UQztgBbSg and https://youtu.be/e68nzn_ymbM.

PA Extension to host farm marketing program Dec. 8

Penn State Extension along with Buy Fresh, Buy Local Greater Lehigh Valley to host session

ALLENTOWN, Pa. — Farmers who have been selling direct to consumers via farmers markets and/or CSAs (Community Supported Agriculture) have noticed a shift in those market channels. For the last few years, farmers markets and CSAs have been stagnant and in some cases shrinking. Are there other market channel opportunities for farmers? Are there techniques we can use to improve customer retention? What are the current trends in local food we can capitalize on?

Penn State Extension along with Buy Fresh, Buy Local Greater Lehigh Valley will host an “Intensive Marketing” program at the Nurture Nature Center, 518 Northampton Street, Easton, Pa., on Dec. 8.

Nick Burton, State of The Soil, Simon Huntley, Small Farm Central and Marilyn Anthony from Temple University Fox School of Business will help to improve and sharpen our marketing skills for this day-long workshop.

Registration and detailed information to follow soon. For more information contact Brian Moyer at 610-391-9840 or email at bfm3@psu.edu.

— Penn State Extension

Source: https://www.morningagclips.com/extension-to-host-farm-marketing-program-dec-8/

Bucks Montgomery PA Annual Wool Pool Second Saturday in June

The Bucks/Montgomery Cooperative Wool Pool will hold it’s annual wool pool 7 a.m.-2 p.m. Saturday, June 9th, at Delaware Valley University’s Roth Farm, 1260 Welsh Road, North Wales, Pa. (Date verified with the Wool Pool staff March 3, 2018).

The wool will be graded, sorted, bagged and loaded on a truck headed to a woolen mill in South Carolina. More than 23,000 pounds of wool was handled in 2015.

The wool will be graded by fiber diameter, length and color. Any wool producer from any county is welcome to sell their wool through this pool. No quantities are too big or too small.

Hand spinners and crafters also are welcome to buy fleeces by the pound from noon to 1 p.m..

The wool pool is a collaborative effort between Penn State Extension, Delaware Valley University and the Wool Pool Cooperative. For more information, call Bob Brown, Penn State Extension, at 215-345-3283.

Date:    Saturday, June 9, 2018
Time:     7:00 AM – 2:00 PM
Place:    
Roth Farm of Delaware Valley College
Rtes. 63 & 202, Upper Gwynedd

8 miles west of DVC main campus

Check the following Facebook pages for more info:

Bucks Montgomery County Wool Pool

DVC 4H

PSU Extension Montgomery County

 

International Heritage Breeds Week & Day May 15-21, 2016

About International Heritage Breeds Week & Day

Save the Date for May 15-21, 2016!

Read last year’s Official Press Release

History

The first annual Heritage Breeds Week was held in May, 2015 across the United States to raise awareness about nearly 200 endangered heritage breeds of livestock and poultry. A national campaign was launched by The Livestock Conservancy promoting the weeklong event and heritage breed farmers, enthusiasts, and the public were encouraged to spread the word throughout their networks. The week of awareness culminated on with National Heritage Breeds Day where many farms and ranches held local events such as farm tours, workshops, or lectures to raise awareness in their communities.

The event was so successful in its first year that The Livestock Conservancy has partnered with livestock conservation organizations from around the world to host International Heritage Breeds Week and Day in 2016.

Purpose

International Heritage Breeds Week aims to raise awareness about endangered heritage breeds of livestock and poultry. Many of our traditional livestock breeds have been replaced with more “improved” breeds in modern animal agriculture, at the expense of a massive loss in genetic diversity. Worldwide, about one domesticated livestock breed every month is lost to extinction.

Mission

“To protect endangered livestock and poultry breeds from extinction.”

Strategy

International Heritage Breeds Week will be held during the third full week of May each year, with Interational Heritage Breeds Day being held the ending Saturday of that week.


Participating National Organizations


Ways You Can Participate…

 

Educate and Advocate

International Heritage Breeds Week is an opportunity for livestock conservation organization members, fans, and sponsors to advocate for conservation of heritage breeds in agriculture. It’s a time to share with local, state, national, and international audiences what livestock conservation is all about and the impact it has on heritage breeds and agriculture every day. Help us promote International Heritage Breeds Week and Day by word-of-mouth, through social media, and to your local press.

Download Promotional Materials

Host an Event!

Adopt-a-Classroom
Host a classroom field trip to a local heritage breed farm or ranch or to a historical farm with heritage breeds in your area. Or, bring the breeds to the classroom! This provides a great opportunity for children to learn about the importance of genetic diversity and conserving heritage breeds.

Adopt-a-Legislator
Invite one or more state legislators to visit local farms and ranches or set up a visit to their state office. Leave them with livestock conservation materials and samples of heritage breed products.

Adopt-a-Nursing Home
Visit a local nursing home and consider taking heritage breed animals with you. Many older folks once raised heritage breeds and will appreciate the opportunity to reconnect with the animals.

Farmer’s Markets
Local Farmer’s Markets are a wonderful place to emphasize the importance of heritage breeds. Arrange to have music, samples, fun games for kids and make a day of it.

Heritage Breed Petting Zoo
Organize a petting zoo where children and their parents can see heritage breed animals and learn more about them. Provide your own animals, or work with local farmers and ranchers to provide the animals.

Host a Celebrity
Invite a local celebrity who is familiar with heritage breeds, raises them; or has a friend or family member who has been involved with them and request sponsorship of International Heritage Breeds Week. Hold an event and ask the celebrity to speak about a personal experience involving heritage breeds.

Library Display
Approach your local public or school libraries about organizing an exhibit during International Heritage Breeds Week. You might offer to arrange for a speaker or a lecture series about agriculture. Books about rural communities, animals, farms, etc., could be part of a special International Heritage Breeds Week section that encourages children to learn more about agriculture and how it affects their lives. The Livestock Conservancy’s new book An Introduction to Heritage Breeds is a wonderful addition to any library.

National Heritage Breeds Day Breakfast
Host a Heritage Breeds breakfast for local government and business leaders. Identify a keynote speaker to talk about heritage breeds and plan your menu around locally grown and raised agricultural products.

Organize a Fundraiser
Host a fundraiser, such as a walk-a-thon, and donate money to national conservation organizations like The Livestock Conservancy and/or a breed’s registry, club, or association. Emphasize the importance of heritage breeds in the nation’s agricultural system; pay tribute to a local farmer; or recognize all farmers who raise heritage breeds year-round.

Public Contest
Sponsor a community-wide event, such as a coloring or poem-writing contest for students. The children could acknowledge their breed or species. The drawings or poems could be displayed in local schools, hospitals, or nursing homes.

Public Exhibit
Showcase an exhibit at your local mall, shopping center, or public area to introduce the public to heritage breeds. Include examples of heritage breed products like wool, cheese, or eggs, as well as information on how these products are produced. Contact other local heritage breed producers to collaborate and display items and information. Consider conducting outreach and education in urban and underserved areas.

School Lunches
Encourage elementary schools to designate a day during National Heritage Breeds Week to distribute quizzes and puzzles with school lunches. This can also serve as an opportunity to explain the connection between farms and foods on the table. Contact your state’s School Food Service Association for guidance. Or, with cooperation of the school, donate items (milk, ice cream, meat, cheese, etc.).

Shows and Fairs
Promote a positive image of heritage breed conservation by sponsoring a local show or fair. Consider including exhibits, food stands, live animals or entertainment.

Tell the World!

  • Write and distribute a press release announcing National Heritage Breeds Day and/or National Heritage Breeds Week.
  • Place an article in your state or local newspaper(s) or a community blog about National Heritage Breeds Week and the contributions of heritage breeds to global Agriculture.
  • Host a press conference. Discuss an important agricultural issue in your community; honor a farmer or rancher; or bestow an “honorary” farmer title to a deserving politician or civic leader.
  • Host an editorial board meeting with leading state or local newspapers. Discuss the importance of heritage breeds on your farm or ranch and ways the public can become more involved in supporting rare breed conservation.
  • Suggest that your state or local newspaper solicit stories from heritage breed farmers or ranchers to discuss how they are working first-hand to protect genetic diversity and endangered breeds.
  • Follow and tag livestock conservation organizations on social media and use #HeritageBreedsWeek to show us how you’re participating!

Australia:
Rare Breeds Trust of Australia (https://www.facebook.com/groups/53617001689/?fref=ts)

Canada:
Heritage Livestock Club of Eastern Ontario (@HLCEO) (https://www.facebook.com/Heritage-Livestock-Club-Of-Eastern-Ontario-820084231368549/)

Columbia:
Asociacin de Criadores de Bovinos de Razas Criollas y Colombianas de los Llanos Orientales Colombianos (@GanadoCriolloCo) (Facebook.com/asocriollanos)

Europe:
SAVE Foundation (Facebook.com/agrobiodiversity)

Ibero-America:
Actas Iberoamericanas en Conservación Animal

International:
Red CONBIAND (https://www.facebook.com/Red-Conbiand-171456969544781/)

Latin America:

Traspatio Iberoamericano (TRASIBER) 

Portugal:
Sociedade Portuguesa de Recursos Genéticos Animais

United Kingdom:
Rare Breeds Survival Trust 
(@RBSTrarebreeds) (https://www.facebook.com/Rare-Breeds-Survival-Trust-151508721576385/?fref=ts)

United States: 
The Livestock Conservancy (@LConservancy) (Facebook.com/LivestockConservancy)
National Animal Germplasm Program (NAGP) (@USDA_ARS)
Smithsonian & SVF Biodiversity Preservation Project (Facebook.com/SVFFoundation)

Source: http://www.livestockconservancy.org/index.php/what/internal/international-heritage-breeds-week

Wool Pellets for Gardening – Marketing Raw Wool

Wool Pellets (patent pending) are a brand new way to grow healthy, happy, all natural plants.  As our newest and most innovative product, Wool Pellets are made from 100 % American raw wool and provide fertilizer, porosity, and water wise holding ability to your plants.  Wool is sheared from our sheep and other  ranchers’ sheep each spring some of this wool is sold to make clothes.  However belly wool and wool from around the back end of the sheep(called “tags”) is what we use to make Wooley Water Wise Wool Pellets.  Wool Pellets have a fertilizer value of 9-1-2 NPK, plus they have Calcium, Magnesium,Iron, Sulfur, and other Micro nutrients in just the right amounts.
​Wild Valley Farms has partnered with Pineae Greenhouses to create the Wooley Water Wise hanging baskets which will be available through Costco spring of 2016.

​Wool Pellets are more than a fertilizer because:

  • Ability to hold 20 times their weight in water helping to reduce the times you water.
  • By holding water they can wick away extra water protecting your plants from over watering.
  • Wool pellets also expand when added to the soil helping to increase porosity for optimal root growth.  Reducing the need for additives like Perlite.
  • Wool Pellets are slow release helping your plants grow all year long.
  • Wool Pellets are All Natural, Organic, Sustainable, and Renewable.  They are made from 100% raw wool from U.S.  ranchers.
  • Wool Pellets improve your soil!
  • Wool Pellets also repeal slugs and snails.

Source: http://www.wildvalleyfarms.com/wool-pellets.html