Sonoma County Farm Bureau

Sonoma-Marin Farm News - 2013

Farm News

Below, are highlighted articles that were published in Farm News from January 2013 - December 2013. To view, click on the cover below to navigate to the articles.

Note: Not all the articles that were in each publication made it online, so if you are looking for another article please contact Farm Bureau and ask. 707-544-5575.

 

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December - 2013

December 2013

Christmas in Crane Country

Petaluma Creamery

When the last Crane melon rolls out the door each fall, the Crane family gets busy transforming their historic Crane Melon Barn into a glittering country Christmas boutique.

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“Ag Days” for TLT Gold Cup

Farm Bureau coordinated the “Ag and Natural Resources Day” programs for 80 Santa Rosa area students selected for Tomorrow’s Leaders today, a program for high-achieving high school juniors.

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Re-think Habitat Regulations Neve Flowers

I remember when I was a young student in London, the stain I used to get on my shirt was black soot. Up to the 1950s, all buildings in my neighborhood were heated by coal-fired steam. In many industrial areas, soot from factories was so pervasive that the tree bark turned black.

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Wine Industry Leaders Meet apples

Congressman Mike Thompson hosted a round table discussion with U.S. Trade Ambassador Michael Froman & U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack and local leaders from the wine industry on November 17 at Robert Mondavi Winery in Oakville.

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Old Man Winter Is Coming

Rural Crime

In the last few years we have had relatively dry winters here in Sonoma County. Hopefully that will soon change as we really need the rain. But even with dry winters we still get the short cold days.  With a little rain and dropping temperatures we, as horse owners, must to be prepared.

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Digital Cameras for Security Harvest Fair

Thanks to the pictures they produce, trail cameras in strategic locations can be one of the best, most cost-effective crime detectors available for both ranchers and their law enforcement partners. It is virtually impossible for a suspect to deny his presence when a picture clearly shows him there.

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Fresh Trees, a Holiday Tradition Harvest Fair

It’s the time of year to pack up the kids to scout the hills and dales of Sonoma County for the perfect Christmas tree to string with lights and garland. There are more than a dozen choose-and-cut tree farms in Sonoma County, with most of the farms concentrated west of Petaluma and in the hills around Sebastopol.

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Laurie’s Turkey Pot Pies Harvest Fair

Driving home from the airport after a grueling, long five days in Vegas, where I competed in the World Food Championships and placed 4th overall in Desserts, my Sous Chef,  Dawn Bettinelli said to me, “You’re not going to cook when you get home are you?!”  Hehehe…being the cook-a-holic that I am, I said, “Yes".

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Owls, Flys & New Regulations Harvest Fair

Farm Bureau is holding a Workshop on Dec. 16th, open to Pesticide Applicators and Certified Crop Advisers, covering Barn Owls, Olive Fruit Fly infestations and new regulations affecting the Hazard Communication Standard. The workshop will be presented in English.

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November - 2013

November 2013

Farmer Vic – Ag’s Goodwill Ambassador

Petaluma Creamery

This old farm is the best show in town, attracting visitors from around the world who have come to know “Farmer Vic” as the kindly keeper of a menagerie of feathered and hooved critters in pastures along Shiloh Road in Windsor.

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Tom Gore Honored for Dedication to Viticulture at the Harvest Fair Gold Cup

Some people are born with certain talents and instincts, Tom Gore is one of those people. Tom was born and raised in Alexander Valley where his father, Tom Sr., was a vineyard manager and partner in Vyborny Vineyard Management.

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2013 Sonoma County Equine Survey Being Conducted Online Neve Flowers

The Sonoma County Horse Council (SCHC), an important partner to Sonoma County Farm Bureau, is counting on every local horse owner to participate in Sonoma State University’s equestrian  funded 2013-14 Online Survey of Sonoma County’s Equine Industry.

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Training The Rescued Horse apples

When training horses that have been rescued from abuse or neglect my methods are the same as working with any horse.  While abuse or neglect is a horrible thing, if I treat this horse differently it will only limit the horse.  A horse needs a leader - someone they can trust and respect.

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Smashed Prawn Risotto

Rural Crime

I recently had the opportunity to meet Dan Magnuson of Soda Rock Farms in Healdsburg and taste some of his heirloom tomatoes.  It all began when I invited Jennifer Hedgpeth, owner of SMASH Foods co., to be a guest on “Cooking With Laurie” TV show. 

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Combating Illegal Dumping Harvest Fair

You’ve all seen it:  A ragged broken sofa, rusted appliance, mounds of torn trash bags overflowing with household garbage piled along the side of a road. It’s an unsightly mess, illegal and a major problem for property owners in rural Sonoma County. Here are some tips to prevent the nuisance on your own land.

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October - 2013

October 2013

Santa Rosa Farmers Market – Sonoma County’s True Original

Petaluma Creamery

The bounty of Sonoma County –and beyond – is on spectacular display every Wednesday and Saturday at the Santa Rosa Original Certified Farmers Market, which has been supplying homegrown fruits and veggies to local shoppers for the last 46 years.

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Tyler Klick Named Outstanding Young Farmer by the Sonoma County Harvest Fair Gold Cup

Tyler Klick literally stomped his first grapes at his family’s Lake County vineyard when he was just six years old.  To take a break from their logging and lumber business in Mendocino County, each summer Klick and his family would spend time at their vineyard where they would take to wine making the old-fashioned way, with the kids being the premier grape stompers.

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Cooking wiht Laurie - Tequila Fuego Wrap Neve Flowers

Those of you who know me, know that I love FiRE…lighting food on fire at the dining table always seems to impress.  This idea hit me like a lightning bolt…why not melt my cheese with FlAMiNG Tequila?! This recipe was created by me for the upcoming “First Annual World Wrapped Cooking Competition” held during the Sonoma County Harvest Fair.

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A Common Myth in Horse Training and The Learning Curve apples

Horses don't think in terms of winning and losing.  As a matter of fact, they don't think like you and me at all.  For the most part all they want is to be left alone in a green pasture with some of their friends.  So then the question arises, "Don't we have to end on a good note?"  The answer here is, yes. But what’s a good note?

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4-H Foundation BBQ Beats the Rain and Raises Record Revenues

Rural Crime

Rain showers left organizers of the 4-H Foundation of Sonoma County’s BBQ and “Fun”draiser a bit bewildered for a time but miraculously the clouds parted and the sun came out, setting the stage for a fantastic event that raised more than $100,000 in net proceeds.

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Help for Property Owners with Unregistered Ponds in Sonoma & Marin Counties Harvest Fair

This past year the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) Division of Water Rights began the process of registering ponds on the north coast. Property owners in Marin, Sonoma, Mendocino, Humboldt and Napa counties were notified that as owners of surface water ponds they were required to register the pond for use or seek an appropriative water right.

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September - 2013

September 2013

Petaluma Creamery Turns 100 and Still Keeps Churning

Petaluma Creamery

The venerable Petaluma Creamery, established in 1913 by a group of dairy farmers, has dutifully anchored the west side of downtown Petaluma for the last century, defining the town’s agricultural roots and serving as the economic engine for the Sonoma-Marin Dairy Belt.

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Sonoma County Fair’s Top Exhibitors Honored at Farm Bureau Foundation’s Awards Dinner Gold Cup

The Sonoma County Fair’s cream-of-the-crop took center stage at the Sonoma County 4-H and FFA Awards Dinner where Francesca Gambonini and Regina Pozzi, both of Petaluma, were named the outstanding Sonoma County Fair exhibitors for 2013.

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USDA Official Visits Neve Bros. in Petaluma to Gather Input about Trade and Farm Labor Neve Flowers

A high-ranking official of the United States Department of Agriculture toured the Neve Brothers  flower operation in Petaluma and other farm and food companies in Sonoma and Napa counties to discuss key issues including immigration reform, trade agreements and the buy-local movement.

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Where in the World did that come from? apples

This one came to me as I was cleaning my kitchen floor early one morning…I was going to be sharing my pesto recipe at the Sonoma County Fair that day and was trying to think of a clever way to serve it.  Over pasta, although delicious, sounded too boring to me!

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Preventing Illegal Cultivation of Marijuana on Your Lands

Rural Crime

In recent years it has become profitable for criminals to grow marijuana on property belonging to others, particularly in rural parts of Sonoma County. Fear of armed and dangerous individuals guarding a cash crop raises visions of a third world country. These growers have been typically referred to as “Guerilla Marijuana Growers.”

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Harvest Fair to celebrate Sonoma County’s best food, wine, craft brews and ciders Harvest Fair

The Sonoma County Harvest Fair, October 4-6, 2013, will offer guests the best of traditional favorites with many new, exciting features, for an enhanced, and tastier, wine country harvest festival. With the addition of unique and educational demonstrations, a renewed focus on local and artisanal products, a new cooking competition and interactive tastings, this year’s event is shaping up to be an exceptional celebration of Sonoma County’s finest and best-known products.

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August - 2013

August 2013

Celebrating Love of the Land

It was a night to remember as 1,200 people came together at Farm Bureau’s Love of the Land to celebrate Sonoma County’s bounty while honoring the dedicated stewards who are doing their part to protect the land producing that agricultural bounty.

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Re-uniting Ag Industries

AG UNITE was the banner under which some 600 people rallied in Chico on June 12. It was organized by the County Farm Bureaus of Butte, Colusa, Glenn, Shasta, Tehama, and Yuba/Sutter. It aimed at raising funds for Farm PAC and Ag Unite Legal Fund.

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Benedetti to be Honored

Dan Benedetti, Chairman of the Board of Clover Stornetta Farms, will be honored with the “Leadership in Agriculture Award” at the Santa Rosa Chamber’s 41st Annual Agri-Business BBQ on Aug. 22.

 

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Summer Time Bounty

I love this time of year…you either have fresh veggies in your garden or know someone who has an overabundance. This recipe is a spin-off of my “Italian Pinhead Torta”. By omitting a few items, I created a vegan recipe for friends.

 

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Loose Horse

Recently I was on a training ride with a client horse in my favorite park.  The horse was exceptional and I felt very secure on him.  He just needed time and miles.

 

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Awards Dinner Video

The 4-H and FFA Awards Dinner pays tribute to the young people who will one day be leaders in agriculture and the community. The Awards Dinner video is full of great photos from the fair.

 

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July - 2013

July 2013

Farm Family of the Year

The Martinelli Family’s farming history spans more than a century in Sonoma County and mirrors the county’s colorful panorama of agricultural history.

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Olson Awarded Medallion

Steve Olson, a pivotal figure in North Coast agriculture and education, was honored with the Santa Rosa Junior College President’s Medallion.

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Golf Tournament Raises Funds

Sonoma County Farm Bureau hosted its 12th annual Golf Tournament benefiting agricultural education. More than players 130 participated to see whose team would come out on top.

 

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2012 Crop Report

The Agricultural Commissioner is required by law to annually compile and report crop and livestock statistics as well as pest exclusion, management and eradication activities. 

 

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NBC TODAY Burger Battle

My car phone rang…it was my husband calling to say there was a message at home for me to call the NBC TODAY  Show, something about a burger contest. I quickly returned their call. I was one of three entered in the Burger Battle!

 

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Target Hardening

In many of my past articles I discussed various aspects of “Target Hardening”. This month I would like to reiterate reasons why this concept is important in enhancing your overall security.

 

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Wilson Awards $25,000

Twenty–three students from Sonoma County were selected recipients of the Wilson Artisan Wineries Children of Vineyard Workers Scholarships. The total value of the scholarships awarded to students was $25,000.

 

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Virginia Creeper Leafhopper

The native Western grape leafhopper, has historically been a pest of grapes that requires insecticide control. More recently, Virginia creeper leafhopper, has been reported from vineyards and, can cause significant damage if not controlled. 

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June - 2013

June 2013

Saralee, Sonoma County’s Fair Lady

The 65-year-old agricultural activist also is known as the Unsinkable Saralee and the Godmother of Good Causes, especially if they relate to agriculture, farm youth and the Sonoma County Fair. She has been making a difference in Sonoma County since the days she wore her green and white 4-H uniform and showed Holstein dairy cows at local fairs, inspiring others to preserve and perpetuate the farms and ranches that define Sonoma County and its rich agricultural heritage.

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Farm Bureau Foundation Awards $63,000 in Scholarships to Top Agriculture Students in Sonoma and Marin Counties

Farm Bureau Foundation of Sonoma County has awarded 39 scholarships, with a total value of $63,000 to top agriculture students from Sonoma and Marin counties. All 27 of the students will continue their agricultural education at Santa Rosa Junior College or a four year university with several students attending out of state universities such as Cornell University in New York and Oklahoma State University.

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Rescue Horses

Quite often I find myself on the politically incorrect side of topics. But I have always prided myself on being pretty realistic. Picking the right horse is a practice in realism. So often people want to pick a horse based on color, breed, bloodlines, or just because “they’re so darn cute”. While I have been guilty of all these things in the past there is a movement that has been causing my phone to ring off the hook.

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Steven Easter Elected President of the Farm Bureau Foundation

Steven Easter, a resident of Occidental who retired to Sonoma County after a distinguished career with Blue Diamond Growers in Sacramento, is the new president of the Farm Bureau Foundation of Sonoma County.

 

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Cooking with Laurie Visits Devil’s Gulch Ranch

Last January I made a visit to Devil’s Gulch Ranch in Nicasio, CA where I met Mark Pasternak and learned about his EnOrMoUs rabbit raising operation…yes…he has about 8,000 rabbits!!  His one rabbit barn in Nicasio and three barns in Two Rock grew from two does and one buck…and that’s not all…Mark also has pork, lamb and quail, vineyards AND coffee.

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Dinner Dance on July 13 is Benefit for Barn Raising at
Hanna Boys Center in Sonoma

A benefit dinner dance to raise money for livestock equipment and a new barn for the Hanna Boys Center Agriculture Department will be held from 6 to 10 p.m. July 13 at Hanna Boys Center, located at 17000 Arnold Drive in Sonoma.

 

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May - 2013

May 2013

Tish Ward, Conservation Crusader

Sonoma County rancher and conservationist Tish Ward has an abiding respect for land and nature, believing that farming and environmental protection are not mutually exclusive. In fact, she does both with unwavering dedication at the Atwood Ranch in Glen Ellen where she has been the ranch manager and resident sage for nearly 30 years.

 

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WHEEL Program and Agriculture

Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce and Sonoma County Farm Bureau offered a 9-week English language program (WHEEL Program-Worksite Held Employee English Learning) to the agriculture industry. The February through April months were filled with excitement as the program participants increased their English skills enriching their employment and personal lives.

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Protect your Livestock From Rustlers

Cattle rustling -- raiding or stealing animals from their home pastures -- is an old, but still serious crime that hurts ranchers financially. Unfortunately, rustling is becoming a growing problem in California thanks to the rising market value of beef and other livestock.

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Francesca Gambonini of Petaluma Crowned District 3 Dairy Princess

Francesca Gambonini, a sixth generation member of a Sonoma County dairy farming family who has plans to become a dairy cattle geneticist, is the new District 3 Dairy Princess, becoming the goodwill ambassador for the North Bay dairy industry for the next year.

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Happy Mother’s Day - Strawberry Daiquiri Trifle

I have to thank my mom for my start in the world of culinary creations…as a wee one, she didn’t mind that I would raid the kitchen and start chopping and mixing and exploring, she didn’t care that I made a mess in her kitchen…but, she also made me clean everything up when I was finished.  With that said, here is a simply sweet recipe for all the moms, for Mother’s Day.

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Nick Frey – the Voice for Viticulture

Nick Frey, who has been the leading – and most respected - voice for the Sonoma County wine grape industry over the last 14 years, is retiring as president of the Sonoma County Winegrape Commission, the marketing organization that he helped launch. Frey’s retirement was announced earlier this year and became effective on May 1. He will continue to work part-time for the commission. He and his wife Angie plan to stay in Sonoma County where they have become part of the agricultural community.

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Confidence!

Confidence is a funny thing.  Depending on the situation, you either have it or you don’t. It takes time to attain but can be lost in an instant.  Having confidence makes life more enjoyable. Not having it makes life scary. By definition, confidence is trust or faith in a person or thing. People and horses both want confidence. 

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April - 2013

April 2013

Ag Days Brings Grandpa’s Farm to 3,500 School Kids

Geyserville rancher Dick Dilworth swelled with pride as kids looked up – way up - in amazement at his giant draft horses, a matched pair of Belgian beauties named Jada and Megan, on display at Sonoma County Farm Bureau’s Ag Days. “That’s the biggest horse I’ve ever seen in my life,” marveled one small boy who was among the 3,500 school kids attending Ag Days, held on March 26 and 27 at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds.

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Grand Prize Winners in the Ag Days Contest

Farm Bureau administers 8 different agriculture related contests for kids of all ages at Ag Days. Click to view the results of the 2013 contests. All contest winners were honored at the Ag Days Awards Dinner on Tuesday, March 26th at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds.

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Selling a Healthy Landscape – Our Local Rangelands

Rangelands owners and managers are familiar with the economic value that rangelands provide – specifically grazing opportunities for livestock; however that 40% of California’s land mass provides so much more.  It is a whole ecosystem that provides benefits to the landowner and to all life forms living or passing through that land.  The benefit of well-maintained ecosystem services is as small as neighbors that benefit from clean water to as great at as worldwide benefit of clean air and carbon sequestration.

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Cooking With Laurie Visits RedHill Farms

I recently visited RedHill Farms in Petaluma and met Don Gilardi for the first time…he can hardly keep up with the demand for his pasture raised organic eggs.  Don showed me his moveable hen houses, which, by the way...are the most high tech, unique design I have ever seen.  They have solar panels to turn lights on when the days are short and the BEST part…you gather the eggs without setting foot inside; a side trap-door flips down and BiNgO…there are rows of individual nests filled with eggs.

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Barn Sour or Buddy Sour Horses

Barn or buddy sour horses are not fun. In fact, they can be down right dangerous.  When they’re acting up they’re not listening to the rider. Therefore, the rider has little or no control of the horse. This can lead to injury for either the horse or the rider or both.  How do you fix this?  It takes time and consistency. Below I will outline my plan to eliminate these two problems.  Note:  If you are looking for a quick fix, don’t bother reading this article. There isn’t one.

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Spring Agricultural Plastic Recycle Event!

Our office will hold a plastic pesticide container recycle event again this spring.  The event will be held Wednesday, May 22, 2013, 9 a.m. – 3 p.m.. The collection site will be the Sonoma County Healdsburg Corporation Yard, which is located on Alexander Valley Rd. in Healdsburg. 

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Michael Saqui on Farm Labor and Vineyard Management: The Risks and Rewards of Doing it Right

Sonoma County Farm Bureau, Sonoma County Winegrowers, California Association of Winegrape Growers and Michael Saqui of The Saqui Law Group Counselors to Management are sponsoring a workshop for vineyard managers, grape growers, wineries and all agricultural employers on Farm Labor and Vineyard Management: The Risks and Rewards of Doing it Right.

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March - 2013

March 2013

Farm Bureau’s Great Sonoma Crab & Wine Fest Has Become Region’s Biggest – and Best – Benefit Crab Feed

Guests say Farm Bureau’s Great Sonoma Crab and Wine Fest is so much more than a seasonal crab feed. It’s a mid-winter party where people from the farm and business communities come together to socialize while raising money to support agriculture education and, ultimately,   Sonoma County’s farming future. This year’s event raised more than $50,000 for agricultural education and scholarships.

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Protecting Precious Cargo: How to Travel Safely With Horses

Everyday big rigs motor down the road carrying materials from here to there. Before being entrusted with a rig weighing in the neighborhood of 80,000 pounds, truck drivers spend time in school learning the working parts of their truck and trailer and how to maintain them. This includes doing a pre-trip inspection and how to strap and secure loads so they will arrive safely and not be a danger to other motorists.

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Grossi turns over the Organization to Dolcini

Once again Marin County Farm Bureau celebrated another terrific annual dinner held at the Margaret Todd Center in Novato. About 120 people turned out to see us honor Bob Berner as a Friend of farm Bureau and award Jim Spaletta with the Lifetime Achievement Award. Great food by Jimmy’s Catering, wine donated by American Ag Credit, and an open bar set the stage for a great time.

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Cooking With Laurie Visits Hicks Valley Cattle Co.

In February of 2011 my very first episode of ‘Cooking With Laurie’ was filmed…my first ‘victim’ was Billy Barboni.  Billy and I go way back, attending Lincoln School together, (he is a few years older ; ) and that is why I still call him Billy…or Dr. Barboni when my co-pilot is at the vets office (Billy is Bart’s vet). 

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7th Annual California's Artisan Cheese Festival - Event Lineup for March 22-24

Be it brie, chèvre, blue, crescenza or Dry Jack, one thing’s certain: California’s Artisan Cheese Festival will celebrate all things cheese for the seventh year in a row March 22-24, 2013, at the Sheraton Sonoma County in Petaluma.  The United States’ premier cheese and wine event, the Festival brings together artisan cheesemakers, brewers, wineries and guests for three days of cheese tasting and appreciation.

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Urgent Request to Rescind Interior Secretary’s Decision to Close Drakes Bay Oyster Company in Point Reyes, California.

Sonoma County Farm Bureau, representing its 3,000-strong members in agriculture, related industries and environmental stewardship, requests you to rescind immediately the decision made by Interior Secretary Ken Salazar on November 29, 2012 to close Drakes Bay Oyster Company in Point Reyes, California.

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Sonoma County UC Cooperative Extension Prepares for the Second Year of Beginning Farmer & Rancher Training

In 2012, Sonoma County UC Cooperative Extension (UCCE) launched the first of a three year USDA funded beginning farmer & rancher training to increase food access, food security and create more jobs; with an emphasis on reaching underserved populations.

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Farm Bureau Seminars and Trainings - Current Classes

A series of trainings and workshops for agricultural and related industry workers are being held at the Sonoma County Farm Bureau in 2013. To register contact Anita Hawkins 707-544-5575.

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WHEEL Program – English Learning Offered

Sonoma County Farm Bureau is partnering with the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce to provide an English Learning Program for agricultural employees. The WHEEL Program is designed to increase English language skills. The program classes will be held starting Feb. 7th from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and there is no cost for the program.

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February - 2013

February 2013

Neve Brothers, a Floral Legacy in Petaluma

When Petaluma’s Nick Neve was in second grade he was asked the usual question about what he wanted to be when he grew up. That was easy, he said.  He wanted to be a flower grower like his father, grandfather and uncles.  He could have said like his great grandfather too, but being only 7 he didn’t know the complete history of the family flower business.

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Prepare for the Worst To “Win” on the Trail

There is a popular board game called “The Worst Case Scenario.” The object of the game is to successfully navigate unexpected and dangerous scenarios. In one version, the winning player will not only finish with the most gold tokens, they must keep the most body parts. I think a useful game for horsemen and women might be called “Worst Case Scenario—Trail Riding.” Players would win by staying on the trail, gathering gold “sanity” tokens and, of course, keeping all their body parts!

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Cottage Food Law – Selling Food Made at Home

Are you ready to sell your home made foods?  This new law may make that possible! On September 21, 2012, Governor Brown signed the California Homemade Food Act into law. This law was implemented on January 1 and creates a new category of retail food facilities known as a Cottage Food Operation (CFO), which will allow persons using home kitchens to make and sell non-potentially hazardous foods.

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Cooking With Laurie visits Three Twins Ice Cream

With our below freezing weather this past month, ice cream may have been the farthest thing from your mind…or not! I love ice cream…not just any ice cream…it happens to be ‘Three Twins Ice Cream’ made right here in Petaluma. In October of 2011, I met Neal Gottlieb founder of Three Twins Ice Cream and went on a tour of his ice cream making plant.

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Owner Applied Number Program a Tool to Identify Stolen Farm Equipment

Rural Theft is on the rise throughout Sonoma County and everyone who is invested in Agriculture is affected directly or indirectly by this crime.  Each and every day a Patrol Deputy takes a report from a farmer or Agri-business partner in our community.

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Applications Now Being Accepted for Farm Bureau Foundation Scholarships

The Farm Bureau Foundation of Sonoma County will award more than $50,000 in scholarships this year to deserving students studying agriculture or an agricultural-related field at a four year college, junior college or vocational school. The Farm Bureau Foundation’s mission is to encourage – and financially assist – young people for rewarding careers in agriculture or a closely related field.

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$10,000 Donation Triggers Renovation of Old Corrals at SRJC’s Shone Farm

The old livestock corrals at Santa Rosa Junior College’s Shone Farm are getting a much-needed make-over thanks to the generosity of a Santa Rosa investment broker who has donated $10,000 to the renovation project. Santa Rosa businesswoman Eileen Carlisle made the $10,000 donation in memory of her late parents John and Carol Jean Carlisle, who were farmers in North Dakota.

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WHEEL Program – English Learning Offered

Sonoma County Farm Bureau is partnering with the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce to provide an English Learning Program for agricultural employees. The WHEEL Program is designed to increase English language skills. The program classes will be held starting Feb. 7th from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and there is no cost for the program.

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January - 2013

January 2013

Frizelle Enos Still Going – and Growing - Strong at 75

Frizelle-Enos Feeds, the oldest continuously operated business in Sebastopol, has evolved with the small town it has called home since 1938, becoming a favorite meeting place for the interesting mix of people who live in western Sonoma County. Over the last 75 years, Frizelle Enos, located at 265 Petaluma Avenue near the old railroad tracks that once ran the train through town, has continually reinvented itself to reflect the community it serves. 

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Farm Bureau’s Great Sonoma Crab & Wine Fest is Feb. 2 at Sonoma County Fairgrounds

Sonoma County Farm Bureau’s 24th annual Great Sonoma Crab & Wine Fest will be held Feb. 2 in the Grace Pavilion at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds. RSVP today. The Crab & Wine Fest, which has become the winter social event for the county’s farmers and ranchers and their friends and supporters, raises money for agriculture education.

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Tito Sasaki Takes the Reins as President of Sonoma County Farm Bureau

Tito Sasaki, a Sonoma Valley grape grower, scientist and businessman, is the new president of Sonoma County Farm Bureau, the county’s oldest, largest and most influential agricultural organization. Sasaki, who is 74, succeeds Joe Pozzi, a Valley Ford livestock rancher, as president of Farm Bureau, a non-profit, grassroots organization that has represented the interests of the county’s farmers and ranchers for 95 years.

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Cooking With Laurie visits Stemple Creek

When I first started filming ‘Cooking With Laurie’, the first three ranchers I visited all told me the same thing… Do you know Loren Poncia? He would be GrEaT on your show! I did not know Loren Poncia at the time, but I could not wait to meet such a well-known guy. In the fall of 2011, I visited Stemple Creek Ranch which raises all natural, grass fed beef and lamb and…I finally met Loren Poncia.

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Falcons and Dogs Put to Work as Vineyard Guardians

Falcons and dogs are being used as vineyard guardians to keep pesky starlings and other birds from devouring valuable wine grapes during harvest. Two workshops held at Sonoma County Farm Bureau in recent months introduced growers to the idea of using falcons and small dogs as alternatives to netting, noisemakers, flags or poison to deal with the avian pests that descend in droves in many Sonoma County vineyards when grapes approach peak ripeness.

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Local Natural Foods Market Showcases Products Grown on Their Family’s Micro-Farm

On less than three acres, Susan Bryer and Ernie Shelton grow a significant portion of the produce for Shelton’s Natural Foods Market in Healdsburg. Bryer, a graduate of the Sonoma County Beginning Farmer & Rancher Training program, had prior experience with a backyard garden, but when she met up with Ernie, she had to ratchet up her skill set to tackle this much larger acreage.

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Marilyn Herzog Honored With Spirit of Sonoma County Award

Marilyn Herzog, whose life has been dedicated to agriculture and community service, was honored with the Spirit of Sonoma County Award for her many contributions to Sonoma County Farm Bureau and her unwavering dedication to Sonoma County’s quality of life.

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CA Employers: Are You in Compliance?

California agricultural employers are more regulated than any other in our nation. Do you know everything that is required of you for 2013 and beyond?  Find out beginning Tuesday, January 22nd. Take this opportunity to consult with Brian Little of FELS and Ron Barsamian an agricultural labor and employment law attorney.

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WHEEL Program – English Learning Offered

Sonoma County Farm Bureau is partnering with the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce to provide an English Learning Program for agricultural employees. The WHEEL Program is designed to increase English language skills. The program classes will be held starting Jan. 7th from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. and there is no cost for the program.

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