let's talk farm animals

A lifelong passion for farming educates thousands

 By Patricia Grotenhuis

What happens when you mix a farmer and former school teacher with an urban area?  You get a Learning Barn which provides thousands of people the opportunity each year to learn about where their food comes from.

Mary Ann Found and spokesrobot Owen talk to a young fan about farming

Mary Ann Found always loved teaching children about agriculture.  While her children were young, she would invite their classes to come visit the farm for a tour.  While teaching at a nearby school, she would often bring farming into her lesson plans, and even brought live animals to school from time to time.

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Posted by Farm and Food Care on March 1st, 2012 :: Filed under Agriculture Education,Consumers,Education and public awareness,Farm life,Speaking out
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I expect better from the New York Times

By: Leslie Ballentine, Farming and food commentator

Not being a foodie, I never knew who U.S. food writer Mark Bittman was until he broke out of the food world into the mainstream with his 2009 bestselling book Food Matters, “a look at the links among meat production and obesity, global warming, and other nasty features of modern life.” According to his bio, “[i]t has good recipes, too.” Since then he has garnered a strong following of those who share his conspiracy theories and impractical opinions on the way farming and food production should be. He also says he has been a journalist since 1968.

So when I read his July 6 New York Times opinion piece, Banned from the Barn, I thought I was reading something from a cheap tabloid not a highly regarded newspaper.

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Posted by FFC on August 8th, 2011 :: Filed under Housing,Letters to the Editor,Media,Pigs
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Ontario veal farm digester turns manure into power for neighbouring homes

On Wednesday June 29, 2011, Delft Blue Veal Farms (division of Grober Inc.) proudly hosted the event, Harvesting Clean Energy on Ontario Farms

Delft Blue's digester

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Posted by FFC on July 20th, 2011 :: Filed under animal by-products,Environment,Manure,Sustainability,Veal
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Studying is regular routine for farmers

by Patricia Grotenhuis, lifelong farmer and agricultural advocate

There is a lot of studying which goes into farming. 

Many farmers today have a college diploma or university degree.  Some even have graduate degrees.  Even after school, though, farmers have to constantly update their knowledge to stay on top of the latest research findings and newest technology.

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Posted by FFC on April 12th, 2011 :: Filed under Dairy cattle,Education and public awareness,Environmental Farm Plan,Farm life,Innovation and technology
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Annual “Friend of OFAC” award presented to well-loved agricultural advocate

By Patricia Grotenhuis, lifelong farmer and agricultural advocate

A great man in agricultural education was given a much-deserved recognition by the Ontario Farm Animal Council at its annual general meeting on April 5.

Fred Cahill, owner of the Texas Longhorn Ranch and known to countless people simply as “Cowboy Fred” has joined an elite group of agricultural enthusiasts who have received the “Friend of OFAC” award over the last 12 years. 

Cowboy Fred talks to some young visitors at the Royal Agricultural Winter Fair during a show in its education ring.

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Posted by FFC on April 6th, 2011 :: Filed under Beef cattle,Canada,Education and public awareness,Farm life,Horses
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Have you tweeted a farmer today?

By Leslie Ballentine, Farming and food commentator

My teenager spends countless hours on Facebook and YouTube. Apparently she isn’t alone. YouTube has announced that its users have uploaded more than 13 million hours of video content to its servers in the last 12 months, resulting in more than 700 billion YouTube video views. I am sure my daughter has been a big contributor to those stats. But apparently so have farmers and ranchers. 

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Posted by FFC on March 10th, 2011 :: Filed under Consumers,Education and public awareness,Farm life,Innovation and technology
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The real deal about veal

Jennifer Bain, Toronto Star, 2007.04.04

The real deal about veal; The Ontario Veal Association president opens her barn for a tour, encouraging butchers, supermarkets, chefs and consumers to learn more about this lean red meat

Ontario farmers want you to know how they do – and don’t – produce veal.

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Posted by FFC on July 19th, 2009 :: Filed under Consumers,Education and public awareness,Housing,Veal
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Farm Tours – a new way to experience agriculture

By Sarah McGinnis, Calgary Herald, 2008.07.04

As Canadians gravitate towards urban living, the Calgary Stampede is fostering a critical connection between city dwellers and Alberta farms.

This year’s agricultural activities are going to extend beyond the Stampede grounds as a series of day-long farm tours offers the curious a window into how their food is produced.

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Posted by FFC on July 13th, 2009 :: Filed under Canada,Education and public awareness
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