National Briefs: Farmers markets popular in New Hampshire

Wisconsin State Farmer
National briefs


Farmers' markets popular draw in New Hampshire

Several surveys from the University of New Hampshire, state agriculture officials and others found that 84 percent of 500 participants surveyed had shopped at a farmers' market and that most said they shopped there to either support local businesses or buy good quality products.

The key draw for shoppers was the quality, variety, market hours and location. The 16 percent of shoppers who had never been to a market, said they didn't have one near them or had no information about them.

A second survey found that 60 percent of the 369 participants said they shopped at both summer and winter markets in 2016 and nearly 40 percent visited a farmers' market once a week.


American Agri-Women and Bayer hold ‘Gen Z Speaks Ag’ Advocacy Contest 
American Agri-Women (AAW) and Crop Science, a division of Bayer, announce the “Gen Z Speaks Ag” advocacy contest as part of AAW’s “AgDay365: Ag Day is Every Day Campaign.” AgDay365 celebrates the fact that everyone is part of agriculture, every day and the contest encourages young advocates to make their voices count. 
Young advocates, those between 15 and 23, can enter the contest. The entrants can have an agriculture background or have an interest in related topics, such as food safety, food preparation, sustainability, etc. 

The contest runs through Oct, 10, and includes four contest options: photo, video, special event or pollinator education. Prizes range from $100-500. The winners will be announced at AAW’s 2017 convention, which is set for November 16-18 in Bloomington, Minn., and hosted by Minnesota Agri-Women, an AAW affiliate. 

Go to for contest details.


Owner of prominent dairy farm files for bankruptcy

The owner of one of Vermont's most prolific dairy farms has filed for bankruptcy protection. The Burlington Free Press reports Michael LaClair, owner of the Nordic Farms dairy operation, filed last month. LaClair listed $2.1 million in debt.

LaClair purchased the Charlotte dairy operation from Clark Hinsdale III in February 2014. Hinsdale still owns the property the farm sits on.

The Vermont Economic Development Authority loaned LaClair $1 million through the Vermont Agricultural Creditor Corp. program. Hinsdale is also owed nearly $500,000. Other creditors include agricultural companies.

Nordic Farms was the first New England farm to use robotic milking machines. Hinsdale says the operation has suffered from low milk prices and longer industry downturns.
The Vermont Agricultural Mediation Program is now working with the farm to find a solution.


Pilgrim's Pride buys Moy Park

Pilgrim's Pride says it paid about $1 billion to buy U.K. poultry producer Moy Park from its biggest shareholder JBS, which has been selling off its assets amid a corruption scandal in Brazil.

Greeley, Colorado-based Pilgrim's Pride Corp.  said Monday the acquisition will help it expand in Europe. It plans to keep Moy Park's workers and headquarters in Northern Ireland. Like Pilgrim's Pride, Moy Park sells frozen and fresh chicken.

Meat producer JBS, which has a more than 78 percent stake in Pilgrim's Pride, is in the midst of selling assets after executives admitted to bribing politicians in Brazil.
Shares of Pilgrim's Pride fell 82 cents, or 2.8 percent, to $28.28 in afternoon trading.