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From the monthly archives:

March, 2016

Meet the 2016 Cookfresh Community Garden Grant Recipients

Legislators attend Agriculture Roundtable on Food Safety

Legislators from throughout Cook County joined Cook County Farm Bureau for an exclusive discussion on food safety and sanitation at this year's Agriculture Roundtable.  Panel experts include: Sander Robinson, Illinois Department of Public Health; Jeff Heinsohn, Walnut Grove Farms; Tamara Nelsen, Illinois Farm Bureau; Mark Denzler, Illinois Manufacturers' Association; and Bob Reinhard, Tyson Foods, Inc.

Today (March 15th) is National Ag Day!

Today, March 15, is National Agriculture Day... A day to celebrate agriculture! But where would we be without agriculture?

• We would be hungry (Food)
• We would be cold (Clothing)
• We would be wet (Shelter)
• We would be immobile (Fuel)

And so many of us would not be doing what we have the privilege of doing now… because we'd have to farm so we wouldn't be hungry, cold, wet, or immobile!
So take a moment to celebrate Agriculture and its impact on Our Everything, Every Day!

Farm Bureau to Host an Agricultural Roundtable on Food Safety and Sanitation

On Monday, March 21 beginning at 11:30 am Cook County Farm Bureau® is hosting a legislative agricultural roundtable focused on food safety and sanitation.  Confirmed roundtable speakers include Tamara Nelson, Illinois Farm Bureau®; Jeff Heinsohn, Walnut Grove Farms; and Robert Reinhard, Hillshire Brands; Mark Denzler, Illinois Manufacturers' Association; and Sander Robinson, Illinois Department of Public Health. The roundtable will feature speakers on GMO testing, safety, and labeling; on-farm sanitation; and quality control at processing.  Speakers will provide a brief information and overview of their industry or farm then the discussion will be opened up to questions from policy leaders.  This panel is designed to provide Cook County elected leaders and their staff with pertinent information about an issue that impacts their constituents. The discussion will begin promptly at 12:00 pm with lunch beginning served at 11:30 am at the Ronald McDonald House near Lurie’s Childre ...

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March Madness is upon us! Fill out a bracket and help benefit Harvest For All.

Each bracket is a $10 donation to Harvest For All. The winning bracket will received bragging rights and a trophy. Login and fill out your bracket here, http://ilfbyl.mayhem.cbssports.com/e?ttag=BPM16_cpy_invite_new and make your donation here, http://www.ilfbstore.com/young-leader-harvest-for-all-march-madness-bracket-challenge.aspx To participate: 1.     Login to fill out as many brackets as you would like here, http://ilfbyl.mayhem.cbssports.com/e?ttag=BPM16_cpy_invite_new a.       Individuals will have to create a CBS Sports login to participate if you do not already have one. b.      The password for the pool is: HarvestForAll 2.     Pay for your brackets here, http://www.ilfbstore.com/young-leader-harvest-for-all-march-madness-bracket-challenge.aspx 3.     Rules for the pool can be found under Pool Rules within the Illinois Farm Bureau Young Leader pool. Anyone is welcome to fill out a bracket and make a do ...

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TREE AND POND STOCKING SALE

The Will/South Cook Soil & Water Conservation District is currently taking orders for the spring Tree and Fish Sale. Order forms are available on the District Website ~ https://will-scookswcd.org and can be picked up at the Will/South Cook Soil and Water Conservation District office during business hours.   U.S. Mail, email and fax copies can also be requested by calling (815) 462-3106 x 3. The District has a wide variety of plants, shrubs, and trees available this spring.  Stock ranges in size from 8 inches to 6-foot linear stock, and one, two and three gallon potted stock. Fish varieties for sale include Channel Catfish, Largemouth Bass, Redear, Hybrid Sunfish, Hybrid Redear, Fathead Minnows, Bluegill, Black Crappie, Triploid Grass Carp and Albino Catfish (new).  Grass Carp must be ordered by April 15th. All other orders must be received by Tuesday, April 26th.  Orders are pre-paid only. Tree orders will be available for pickup on Friday, May April 29th, 12:00 p.m. until 6 ...

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Farm Bureau Discusses Changes to the Motor Fuel Tax (MFT)

According to the Chicago Metropolitan Agency for Planning (CMAP), the MFT is one of the state and federal government’s primary revenue source for transportation funding.  However, the MFT has not been increased in over 20 years.  Because of inflation, Illinois MFT revenue buys 42% less than it did when it was enacted in 1991.  Meanwhile Illinois and the Chicago region have major investment needs just to maintain existing roads, bridges, and transit systems.  Additionally, the region needs to expand and modernize the system to relieve congestion and serve population growth. According to CMAP’s research: ·       25% of the region’s highways are in unacceptable ride condition ·       8.8% of bridges are structurally deficient ·       30% of transit vehicles are not in a state of good repair ·       34% of transit guideway ...

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CCFB Beekeeping Workshop Alum Reflects on 1st year as a Beekeeper

On Jan 23, 2016, at 7:40 AM, Al wrote: Hi everybody, Another year has flown by in the blink of an eye, but I'm very much looking forward to round two of the advanced bee keeping class with Pete and Kim in February.  Did anyone else have any luck? Jump in head first?! I did and I really enjoyed it. Pete and Kim made my boxes for me and they are beautiful, I had expressed to Pete that I wanted them to accentuate my gardens and to look like living art basically. I'm glad we took your advice on the smaller boxes because wow! They sure do get heavy fully loaded!  I accidentally dropped one while trying to get a frame out, I'll be needing to order just a couple extra frames Pete  My son and I were both nervous and hesitant at first, but now that I've made it through a season I couldn't be happier. I always wear my suit and haven’t been stung once "yet!”:D I love Pete’s story of brand new bee keepers all proud in their bright white new suits only to get dirty with mustard dro ...

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Manifolds, Manolos & Manure...by Bona Heinsohn

Since 2010, Cook County Farm Bureau® has operated a Political Action Committee (PAC) designed to support candidates who are supportive of the policies, priorities and mission of the Farm Bureau while promoting the economic and social well-being of farmers and farm-related interests in Cook County. Since 2010, the PAC has made 33 endorsements.  Not all incumbents.  Not all challengers.  Not all major party candidates.  But candidates who Governance Committee members felt would make the largest impact on their District and the County. Members of the Cook CFB PAC Committee are charged with making endorsements.  When considering a candidate, members consider the results of the candidates’ interviews, questionnaires, support of Farm Bureau policies, and when applicable, voting record.  This Primary, alone, Committee members spent 13 hours interviewing candidates and determining endorsements.  Thirteen happy volunteer hours. Of the candidates running for Cook County ...

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Ag Lit Bit by Diane Merrion

March Madness The brackets are set and the NCAA Excitement will begin soon with a field of 68 schools competing to be the best in college basketball.  March Madness has begun.  Here at Ag in the Classroom, Spring Madness has begun.  We are excited about the opportunities our programming has to offer this spring beyond our free school programs.  A favorite morning of ours is to be chosen to participate in the STEM Expo in School District 104 on March 5th.  This amazing district attracts over 1,000 people to their school to participate in science and technology programming fun for families.  Then we head to the Chicago Flower and Garden Show to share agriculture with schools and families at our Children’s Garden learning table (see article on this page) from March 14-18.  We also encourage you to check out the Chicago High School for Ag Sciences garden and learning activities during the show.  April will find us at our Ag Day Programs for 3rd grade students where ...

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