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Pesticide Applicator Workshop: Dogs, Rodents and Regulations

Sonoma County Farm Bureau is holding an Applicator Workshop from 8 a.m. until 12 noon, December 11th.The Workshop, will cover information including the utilization of dogs for avian pest control in vineyards and environmentally friendly systems to control gophers and other rodents. It will also cover pesticide safety regulations and required hazardous materials procedures. MORE

Jim Groverman, the Father of Petaluma’s Popular Roadside Attraction

As the proprietor of Sonoma County’s most popular roadside attraction, Jim Groverman, the farmer behind the Highway 101 corn maze, is the poster guy for “Agritourism” in the North Bay. In fact, Groverman was doing what he calls “Agro-Tainment” long before the word “agritourism” became part of the farming lexicon and a topic at trendy workshops exploring ways to survive in the farming game. Basically, agritourism refers to any income-generating activity conducted on a farm or ranch for the enjoyment and education of visitors. MORE

Rich Thomas Toasted & Roasted as Recipient of the “Leadership in Agriculture” Award

There were 600 people attending the Santa Rosa Chamber of Commerce’s 40th annual Agribusiness Barbecue where Rich Thomas, the longtime viticulture instructor at Santa Rosa Junior College who became a dynamic force in the Sonoma County wine industry, was honored with the Chamber’s “Leadership in Agriculture” award. MORE

Cooking with Laurie Figone – Fettuccine Al’a Figone

Laurie Figone, who grew up as Laurie Leveroni on her family’s multi-generational dairy ranch nestled in the Marin county hills of rural Novato, this month joins the Sonoma-Marin Farm News as a food columnist. Each month Laurie will offer her award winning recipes and also write about the farmers and artisan food producers she encounters in her travels about the North Bay. Because of her deep roots in the region, Laurie knows many of the farmers and ranchers in Sonoma and Marin counties and will share her stories with readers of the Sonoma-Marin Farm News. MORE

4-H Foundation BBQ Raises $128,000 in Gross Revenues for 4-H Youth

There were 700 people at the 4-H Foundation of Sonoma County’s BBQ and “Fun”draiser held on Sept. 15 at Richard’s Grove and Saralee’s Vineyard in Windsor where more than $128,000 in gross revenues was raised to help support 4-H young activities and the 4-H Center in Rohnert Park. MORE

Valley Ford Cheese Co. Wins Best of Show in Sonoma County Harvest Fair Cheese Competition

Valley Ford Cheese Co., owned and operated by Karen Bianchi Moreda and her son Joe Moreda, took best of show honors for its Fontina in the cheese competition at the Sonoma County Harvest Fair. The top cheese was made from Jersey cow's milk from the Bianchi family’s 640 acre dairy in Valley Ford where 400 cows are milked daily. Karen Moreda, a director of Sonoma County Farm Bureau, founded the Valley Ford Cheese Co. four years to showcase the rich milk from her family’s herd of Jersey cows. MORE

The “Business” of Farming – Transforming the Vision into a Financially Viable Operation

Our Sonoma County ag entrepreneurs are approaching the end of their journey as participants in this first group of the UCCE’s Beginning Farmers & Ranchers training program. Over the past six months, they’ve been exposed to many facets of agriculture, from dairying to hydroponic tomatoes, small scale grains to goat cheese; and have had to face the underbelly of the “running your own business” beast – business planning. MORE

Arturo Ibleto, a Bella Life in Sonoma County

Arturo Ibleto, who drifted into Petaluma 63 years ago as a penniless immigrant from war-torn Italy, today is one of Sonoma County’s most-beloved and revered citizens, a bigger-than-life character whose outsized personality is matched only by the prodigious portions of pasta he serves. MORE

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

Sonoma County Fair’s cream-of-the-crop took the stage at the Sonoma County 4-H and FFA Awards Dinner where Suzanne Amaral of Sonoma and Michelle McClure of Inverness in Marin County were named the outstanding Sonoma County Fair exhibitors for 2012. MORE

Small-Scale Grain Renaissance in North Coast Region

In 2009, the town of Willits in Mendocino County was one of the first communities to assess its self-sufficiency in terms of food security, and to act on it through the Willits Econo mic Localization program. With funding, an ambitious Americorps VISTA member, and support from the community, 10,000 lbs. of grain were sold the first year to local individuals and restaurants, and four silos built to store grain. MORE

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To represent, protect and advance the social, economic and educational interests of the farmers and ranchers of Sonoma County.