Healthy, Hardy Heifers
Free, pre-registration required
Every Friday until November 19 | Noon – 12:45PM EST
Register here
For registration help, contact Donette Griffith at or 607-391-2662 CCE Regional Ag Teams are excited to offer this NEW heifer series!  Join VIRTUALLY for an 8-week series on heifer management topics from post-weaning to calving!  Sessions will be about 30 – 45 minutes in length, with a question & answer period at the end.

Topics include: Transition After Weaning Pre-Breeding Comfort and Nutrition Hoof Health Repro Strategies Bred Heifers Pre-calving Nutrition Pre-calving Comfort and Facilities
Introduction to Sheep Production Virtual Series
$15, Pre-registration required
Mondays, November 1, 8, & 15, 2021 
5:00 – 6:30pm EDT
Register here 
We are excited to offer an intro to sheep production series for our sheep producers. This series will be offered remotely and run weekly.  $15 gives you access to all three workshops in this series.  The Zoom link will be sent to you upon registering.

Nov 1-Week 1- Basic Sheep Production Featuring Guest Speaker – Dr. Brady Campbell, The Ohio State University

Nov 8-Week 2- Sheep Nutrition Featuring Guest Speaker – Dr. Dan Morrical, DVM, Premier 1

Nov 22-Week 3- Solar Grazing Featuring Guest speaker – Niko Kochendoerfer, Cornell University Animal Science Dept.

Call 315-866-7920 if you have any registration questions.  For any questions about the program, call Ashley at 315-604-2156 or email
Design Your Succession Plan “Empowering families to get started on their succession plan.”
Online Zoom Series Coming to NYS!
$100 per farm, includes 1 workbook, Pre-registration required
Additional workbooks available for $25
Tuesdays, November 2 to December 14, 2021 
6:30 – 8pm EDT
Zoom with an online learning platform for use in-between sessions
Register here Registration deadline is October 24

How will your family farm operate in the future when the owner retires or is gone? Are you currently working with another generation who may be questioning their role in the future of the farm or are you yourself questioning your current role?

More than 80% of farm families hope to pass the family farm on to the next generation, but research shows only 30% of family farms survive to the second generation, and only 12% survive to the third generation. A successful transition to the next generation takes careful planning.
To help NYS farm families start their succession planning process, Cornell Cooperative Extension educators will be utilizing a new interactive program designed by North Dakota State University Extension: Design Your Succession Plan. This program provides tools and resources for producers who want to begin the succession planning process.

There are scholarships available for veterans. Please choose veteran as your farm category and there will be no charge for participating in this series. There will be follow-up to confirm your veteran status prior to the start of the series.  Contact Laura Biasillo at

The cost for Herkimer County farm families is $50 thanks to support from the Herkimer County Mental Health Farm Family Assistance Program.  Register online here if you are from Herkimer County.

Participants will have an opportunity to open the lines of communication with family to create a shared vision for the family business. They will also learn to choose and work with professionals such as attorneys, accountants, lenders, insurance agents and tax experts to construct a plan and documents that put the family’s vision into action. Attendees will learn through scenario-based learning how to relate real-life experiences to the farm transition process. This webinar series will utilize a “flipped classroom” which requires that attendees complete pre-work prior to each session. This could include watching videos, visiting websites, or completing a handout/worksheet. This pre-work should not take more than 15-20 mins each week, but will enrich your experience during each of the weekly webinars.
Annie’s Project: Risk Management for Farm Women

$30, Pre-registration required
Mondays and Thursdays from November 1 to December 16, 2021 
6:30-8:30PM EDT
Register here 
Are you a woman engaged in farming in NYS? Would you like to learn and network with other farm women, and learn how to strengthen your farming operation? Join Cornell Cooperative Extensions of Allegany, Broome, Oneida, Steuben, and Seneca counties, along with the Central NY Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops team, for our first virtual Annie’s Project this winter!
Annie’s Project is a six-week online experience designed especially for farm women to help them develop their management and decision-making skills for their farms. Annie’s Project is designed for farm women who have been in farming, or agri-business, or part of the food system for three to five years, and want to develop their understanding, interpretation, and opportunities in sustainable agriculture. Annie’s Project gives farm women the opportunity to learn from female agricultural professionals and network with other women in similar situations.
Annie’s Project provides education in production, price or market, financial, institutional and legal, and human and personal risk. At the end of six weeks, participants will possess the following skills sets — Understand personality types to communicate better with business partners Put family living expenses together with other costs of doing business on the farm Identify production risks on-farm and prioritize risk management strategies to minimize losses Interpret balance sheets, income statements, and cash flow projections to make business decisions Confidence in review of labor laws, requirements, and their implications Develop an inventory of current Human Capitol & make a plan to address any weaknesses and contingency plan if a ‘position’ becomes open Understand farm family labor vs off farm labor. how to offer benefits & when it’s time to hire outside help Communicate expectations of family vs hired labor Understand insurance options to cover Human Resource concerns Understand how assets are titled and learn about estate planning tools Consider and evaluate available marketing opportunities Understand tools and resources for stress management & farm equipment needs specific to farm women. The series includes a portfolio, access to an online learning platform and all presentations & worksheets, financial & legal advice, and support from a variety of community partners.  The fee for women veterans engaged in or interested in getting into agriculture is sponsored by the FarmOps initiative at the Cornell Small Farms Program

For more information on the curriculum and program logistics, please contact Laura Biasillo at
Transition Cow Tuesdays

Free webinar series, Pre-registration required
Tuesdays from November 2 to December 14, 2021 
12:30-1:00PM EDT
Register here 
Have you… been working with the farm transition cow program but want to know more about the how, what and why? wanted to improve the transition cow performance of your herd but need to know where to start? wanted to increase the skills you bring to the farm or your farm employer? been wondering where you’ll find the time to attend a course or workshop? If so, this webinar series is designed for you! The webinars are short, to the point, and just 30 minutes. Grab your lunch and join us. Generous sponsors have enabled us to offer this series free of charge. More information can be found on their website. One registration provides access to all the webinars in the series.

Topics include: Transition Cow Nutrition Feeding the Transition Cow Selective Dry Cow Therapy Facility Considerations Calving Considerations Post Calving Monitoring Evaluating Transition Management
Agricultural Supervisory Leadership Certificate Program: Managing Performance Understand motivation. Harness the power of performance feedback and coaching. Build clear and effective workplace communications. Set safety expectations. Conduct effective performance improvements.
$275 webinar series, Pre-registration required
Tuesdays from November 16 to December 21, 2021 
3:00 – 4:00PM EDT
Register here 
Supervisors are critical to the success of farm businesses. They have a major impact both on employees’ daily work experiences and on the production performance of the business. The Agricultural Supervisory Leadership certificate helps farm supervisors and managers learn and apply human resource management practices and leadership skills that foster rewarding workplaces and drive business results. Confident managers who thoughtfully apply leadership and management skills improve employee performance, develop teams, reduce employee turnover, and increase employee engagement. The courses within the certificate program will offer extensive practice and engagement activities to build confidence and skill sets. Each course includes up to six weeks of instruction on topics that will build your leadership and management skills. Instruction includes a combination of prerecorded lectures, reading assignments, written exercises, live discussion sessions and quizzes. For those looking to learn more on a particular topic, supplemental videos and articles may be recommended by the instructor. To get the most out of the course, students should plan to spend two to four hours each week on combined course activities.

For questions, contact Rachel McCarthy, Supervisory Leadership Certificate Program Coordinator, at
Farmer Tax School Virtual Series
Join Cornell Cooperative Extension Farm Business Management Specialists from across the state for their virtual Farmer Tax School, offered in October 2021 through January 2022. This educational series offers courses designed to inform and empower farm managers to better understand their tax obligations, management strategies, and improve farm profitability. For more information, visit the website.

Register online here.  This is required three business days in advance of the workshop. You can register for one, some of, or all courses. This series has options for agricultural producers of all shapes, sizes, and time in business

Events include:

Farm Financial Records for Decision Making & Tax Management
Thursday, December 2 | 7pm – 9pm
$10 per farm

Tax Management for Beginning and Small Businesses
Tuesday, January 18 | 7pm – 9pm
$10 per farm

Farm Specific Tax Code Benefits
Tuesday, January 25 | 7pm – 8:30pm
$5 per farm 

There are scholarships available for those experiencing financial hardship. The courses will be offered virtually via live and interactive zoom webinar. For those without internet access, there will be a call-in option available with the opportunity to receive paper copies of the presentation via mail. Each presentation will be recorded and sent to those who are registered (even if you can’t attend the live event).
Sheep Shearing Workshop
$50, Pre-registration required, limited to 15 participants
Wednesday, December 8, 2021 
Myron Freed’s Family Sheep Farm
405 Summit Hill Rd, Jordanville NY 13361
9:00am – 2:00pm 
Register here 
Registration due November 30, 2021

  The shearing school will include; shearing pattern demonstration, blade sharpening techniques, shearing equipment maintenance and much more.
The sheep shearing workshop will be instructed by Colin Sigmund, VT.  Colin is a well-known sheep shearer across the Northeast and has had extensive training from sheep shearers all over the country. Colin and his fiancé Siri Swanson run Yankee Clippers Shearing and shear thousands of sheep annually.

What to bring: Shears (hand held electrical units or Shaft units) we recommend you bring a minimum of 3 combs and 3 cutters for the workshop.

Lunch will be provided as well as beverages throughout the day.  We will start right at 9am, so please come a little prior to set up your equipment.

If you have registration questions, call 315-866-7920 or email  For program questions, contact Ashley McFarland at 315-604-2156 or
USDA Accepting Applications to Help Cover Costs for Organic Certification
Organic producers and handlers can now apply for USDA funds to assist with the cost of receiving or maintaining organic certification.  Applications for the Organic Certification Cost Share Program (OCCSP) are due Nov. 1, 2021.

“USDA is here to help all producers including those who grow our nation’s organic food and fiber.  Many farmers have told us that cost was a barrier to their ability to get organic certification,” said Zach Ducheneaux, administrator of USDA’s FSA.  “By assisting with the costs, this program can help organic farmers get their certification along with the benefits that come with it”

OCCSP provides cost-share assistance to producers and handlers of agricultural products for the costs of obtaining or maintaining organic certification under the USDA’s National Organic Program.  Eligible producers include any certified producers or handlers who have paid organic certification fees to a USDA-accredited certifying agent during the 2021 and any subsequent program year.  Producers can be reimbursed for expenses made between Oct. 1, 2020 and Sept. 30, 2021 including application fees, inspection costs, fees related to equivalency agreement and arrangement requirements, travel expenses for inspectors, user fees, sales assessments and postage.

For 2021, OCCSP will reimburse 50% of a certified operation’s allowable certification costs, up to a maximum of $500 for each of the following categories (or “scopes): Crops Wild crops Livestock Processing/handling State organic program fees Organic farmers and ranchers may apply through an FSA county office or a participating state agency.

This funding will be complemented by an additional $20 million for organic and transitioning producers through the Pandemic Assistance for Producers initiative.  More information on that funding will be available in the coming weeks.

For more information and to learn more about organic certification cost share, please visit the OCCSP website, the USDA organic webpage, or contact your local USDA Service Center.
Corn Silage Pre-Harvest Webinar Video Available

The webinar video for the Corn Silage Pre-Harvest is now available on our YouTube channel.  Click here to watch the video.

To keep up with the latest videos, please subscribe to our YouTube channel!
Hemp Growers: We Need Your Input! In collaboration with researchers around the country, we are asking hemp growers to fill out the following survey of insect pest and disease incidence in your hemp crops. In order to properly address these threats, we need to more fully understand their presence in various parts of the country.  Please fill out the survey here.
Labor Research!  What’s Happening On Your Farm?
An important research project is gearing up in the next few weeks to understand what is happening with New York farm labor during this time of great change in markets, regulations and technology. It’s an opportunity for the voices of actual farm employers and employees to be heard through research! Strong participation from farm employers and employees is important!  Go here for more information.

If you have not received a packet in the mail and you a operate a New York farm with hired employees, then reach out to Julie Berry at to request a survey packet. Include your name, farm name, mailing address, phone, and email.
Hired Labor on New York State Dairy Farms: Cost, Efficiency and Change from 2011 through 2020 By Jason Karszes and Christopher Wolf
An important research project is gearing up in the next few weeks to understand what is happening with New York farm labor during this time of great change in markets, regulations and technology. It’s an opportunity for the voices of actual farm employers and employees to be heard through research! Strong participation from farm employers and employees is important!  Go here for more information.

If you have not received a packet in the mail and you a operate a New York farm with hired employees, then reach out to Julie Berry at to request a survey packet. Include your name, farm name, mailing address, phone, and email.

Jason Karszes, PRO-DAIRY, and Christopher Wolf, Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics & Management, have released a new publication that summarizes cost, efficiency and changes associated with hired labor on NY dairy farms from 2011 to 2021. As average dairy farm size grows in New York, reliance on hired labor increases and the cost associated with the hired workforce is a significant expense. For most farms participating in the Dairy Farm Business Summary and Analysis Project (DFBS), hired labor is the second largest expense category after purchased grain and concentrates. With farms participating in the DFBS project for multiple years, an analysis of costs and efficiencies associated with hired labor and how they have changed over the last 10 years was recently summarized. Below are selected highlights from the 2021 hired labor publication: Average herd size grew between 2.9% to 6.8% a year Hired worker equivalents increased between 2.0% to 8.3% a year. One hired worker equivalent equals 2,760 hours of labor a year. Total payroll expenses for the year more than doubled over the timeframe, reflecting an increase in the amount of hired labor along with increases in labor costs per hour. The total payroll costs increased on average 7.5% a year. The cost per hour increased on average 3.5% a year, from $12.92 per hour in 2010 to $17.34 per hour in 2020, or a 34.2% increased from 2010 to 2020. The rate of change in hired labor costs per hour from one year to the next is accelerating, with increases over 5% occurring twice in the last 4 years. Labor efficiency as measured by milk sold per worker equivalent increased 0.5% a year for 2011 through 2015. From 2016 to 2020, milk sold per worker equivalent increased by 3.4% a year on average. Labor costs per hundredweight of milk sold increased from $2.66 to 3.08, an increase of 15.8% over 10 years. The percent increase in labor costs per hundredweight of milk sold is less than the increase in cost per hour in hired labor, reflecting management changes undertaken by the farms over the timeframe to increase labor efficiency. If labor efficiency had not improved, cost per hundredweight would have increased to $3.62.
September 2021 Dairy Market Watch
September’s Dairy Market Watch is now available on the SWNYDLFC website.
We continue to see issues that are widespread, including hauler shortages and employee recruitment challenges at processors. While cheese block prices continue to decline, we’re closer to the convergence of block/barrel prices. Class III prices should be in the $17’s through the end of the year, with Class IV in the high $16’s, depending on any continued slowing of milk production and the effect of holiday purchases on current product stocks. Also keeping a weary eye on the Delta variant and any future shutdowns. Albany $/gallon to farmer was $1.48.
Dairy Market Watch is an educational newsletter to keep producers informed of changing market factors affecting the dairy industry. Dairy Market Watch is published at the end of every month, funded in part by Cornell Pro-Dairy, and is compiled by Katelyn Walley-Stoll, Business Management Specialist with Cornell Cooperative Extension’s Southwest New York Dairy, Livestock & Field Crops Program.
Program on Dairy Markets and Policy Podcast: Dairy Situation and Outlook
Milk production gains have been large, but surprisingly Cold Storage is showing a draw down of cheese stocks. Butter stocks are ample but not larger than expected. This is because domestic and export sales have been brisk. Mark and Bob discuss the current markets and the outlook for prices in this 11 minute video available here.
Dairy Producer Considerations When Dealing with High Grain Prices by David R. Balbian, CCE Area Dairy Management Specialist
  We have been here before. Back in mid-July of 2012, corn got up over $8.00/bu @ the Chicago Board of trade. As I write this corn is approaching $7.00/bu. Soybeans got up to the mid $17/bu. range in late August of 2012. Again, at the time of this writing, soybeans are in the mid-$15 range. Your cows do not care what these prices are. Major knee jerk cutbacks on grain feeding that shorts the cows on their nutritional requirements will only make a bad situation worse. Saving $1.00 on grain and losing $1.50 or $2.00 is bad business. The long-term impacts on reproduction will have lingering effects. Low production cannot be turned around until a new lactation begins.

Check out our website for more information in the Announcements section.
Managing Forage Digestibility to Combat High Commodity Prices By Joe Lawrence, Cornell PRO-DAIRY

  Forage quality is important and it is hard to attend a meeting or read an agricultural publication without hearing this point.  While there is a risk of becoming numb to the message, this spring presents yet another reminder of how critical this can be to controlling production cost on a dairy farm.
Read the article here.
Farmland Protection Implementation Grants Program
State Dedicates Highest Level of Funding Ever to Protect Valuable and
At-Risk Farmland

Each of New York’s 10 Regions Will Be Allocated $5 Million for Conservation Easement Projects 

Eligibility Opportunities Expanded to Agroforestry, Equine, and Wine Sectors
Round 18 FPIG continues New York State’s commitment to provide financial assistance to locally led farmland protection efforts. The Farmland Protection Implementation Grants Program provides financial assistance to counties, municipalities, soil and water conservation districts, and land trusts to enable them to implement farmland protection activities consistent with local agricultural and farmland protection plans. The most frequently funded activity is the purchase of agricultural conservation easements on individual farms. However, the program may also award funding to enable other implementation activities, such as amendments to local laws affecting agriculture, option agreements, and covering the transaction costs of donated agricultural conservation easements.
  All farmland protection project applications must be submitted electronically through the New York State Grants Gateway. More information regarding the Grants Gateway can be found here.
  Find more information on our website under the Announcements panel.
Meeting Guidelines
Effective June 1, 2021, the size limit for outdoor field meetings (including open-air, well ventilated barns) may be held up to 500 participants.

Effective June 11, 2021, the size limit for indoor meetings may be held up to 250 participants.  If the indoor event is held at a business, the business may implement other requirements for participants in accordance with NYS and CDC guidelines, which may include requiring proof of vaccination, separate individuals and designate part of the establishment based on vaccination status, and require masks/social distance for all patrons or just those unvaccinated.

For both types of meetings, masks are only required for unvaccinated attendees and they also need to maintain 6′ social distance during the event.  Vaccination status is based on self-reporting.  Masks and hand sanitizer will be available for participants.  The NYS, CDC, and Cornell University guidelines will be monitored and we will adjust meeting guidance accordingly.

By martha

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.