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News stories tagged with "dairy"

Audio Postcard: DeKalb Livestock Auction

The town of Dekalb Junction, just southwest of Canton, is known by treasure hunters as the antique capital of St. Lawrence County. But every Wednesday, bargain hunters of a different kind park their 4x4s and trailers all along Route 11 for Seymour's Commission Sales weekly livestock auction. David Sommerstein stopped in and sends this audio postcard.  Go to full article

U.S. Cracks Down on Dairy Imports

New York lawmakers are urging U.S. trade representatives to restrict dairy imports from Canada that compete with North Country dairy products. David Sommerstein reports they're making progress as low milk prices continue to hurt farmers.  Go to full article

Commentary: Small is Beautiful

A convergence of news stories about big hamburgers and small farms got Station Manager Ellen Rocco thinking about connections and scale.  Go to full article
Kevin Sullivan's greener pastures.
Kevin Sullivan's greener pastures.

Seasonal Dairying: A Viable Alternative

Most dairy farmers in the North Country milk their cows all year long. It brings in a steady paycheck and ensures a steady flow of milk to manufacturing plants. But a small but growing number give their cows a break during the coldest months. It's a technique called seasonal dairying. Its supporters say it's gentler on the cows, easier on the environment, and gives small dairy farms a future in an industry that's growing ever bigger. David Sommerstein reports.  Go to full article
Kevin Sullivan's intensive grazing fields (top) and a conventional farm barnyard.
Kevin Sullivan's intensive grazing fields (top) and a conventional farm barnyard.

The Joy of Grazing

Fewer than 10 percent of North Country dairy farmers graze their cows on pasture. Most confine their herd to big barns and feed them grains and hay. But since the 1980s, agronomists have been encouraging small farms to embrace intensive rotational grazing during the warmer months as a way to cut costs. Farmers then only buy feed for the winter. David Sommerstein reports on a model 60-cow grazing farm in the Lewis County town of Denmark, near Carthage.

The Adirondack North Country Association's Martha Pickard consults for free with farmers to design a grazing management plan. You can reach her at 518-891-6200.  Go to full article

McCadam Brand in Agri-Mark Plans

The company that plans to buy McCadam Cheese says cheese manufactured in New York will help it expand its markets. Agri-Mark is a cooperative owned by 1400 farmers throughout New England and New York. David Sommerstein reports McCadam's Chateaugay plant will join Agri-Mark's two processing plants in Vermont and one in Massachusetts.  Go to full article
Sheila Besaw owns the H&S Diner on Heuvelton's Main Street.
Sheila Besaw owns the H&S Diner on Heuvelton's Main Street.

Heuvelton Rocked By McCadam Closure

The news of Vermont-based Agri-Mark Coop's purchase of McCadam Cheese Company is good for Franklin County farmers and workers at McCadam's manufacturing plant in Chateaugay, which will stay open.

But Agri-Mark says it will close McCadam's packaging plant in Heuvelton on February 1st after more than a century of operation. More than 100 people will lose their jobs. David Sommerstein reports the effects will be far-reaching for families and businesses in the small St. Lawrence County village.  Go to full article
Tina Montroy has been working at the Heuvelton plant for 15 years.
Tina Montroy has been working at the Heuvelton plant for 15 years.

McCadam Cheese Changing hands

Agri-Mark, the Vermont farmers' cooperative that makes Cabot cheeses, will buy McCadam Cheese plants in Heuvelton and Chateaugay. About a hundred jobs will be lost at the packaging plant in Heuvelton, but the local cheddar will still be made in Chateaugay. Martha Foley talks with McCadam President Brian Lee.  Go to full article
Tina Montroy has worked at McCadam Cheese Co. in Heuvelton for 15 years.
Tina Montroy has worked at McCadam Cheese Co. in Heuvelton for 15 years.

Can Milk Producers & Processors Collaborate?

The North Country dairy industry is built on manufacturing. Most of the milk cows produce is turned into something else - cheese, butter, yogurt, milk powder. The relationship between dairy farmers and the processing plants they sell their milk to is a symbiotic one. But like all close relationships, there can be tension, even outright feuds. In the second part of our series on dairy in the North Country, David Sommerstein looks at the relationship from one processor's point of view, who says the future lies in the two groups becoming one.  Go to full article

Commentary: A Dairying Life

Small dairy farms have been in steady decline in the North Country for decades. Commentator Jill Vaughan's farm is one that had to go out of business. But she says she's never stopped being a dairy farmer.  Go to full article

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