Dye the Easter Eggs, but Don't Handle the Chicks

Monday, March 23, 2015 | 04:33 pm
Baby chicks carry Salmonella risk.
Baby chicks carry Salmonella risk.

Nashville – Those Easter baskets are often filled with candy and colorful eggs. However, there is one type of gift you should avoid during the holiday—baby chicks and ducklings.

Live poultry commonly carry Salmonella germs. When humans handle the birds, the bacteria can spread. Exposure to Salmonella commonly causes extreme abdominal upset. In severe cases, the illness can be fatal. According to the Centers for Disease Control, approximately 400 people die each year with acute salmonellosis.

Children, the elderly, and people with other health conditions are most susceptible to a severe reaction.

Tennessee Lawmakers to Celebrate "Ag Day on the Hill"

Friday, March 20, 2015 | 10:31 am

Tennessee lawmakers will celebrate “Ag Day on the Hill” this year beginning with an awards presentation Monday, March 23 at 4:30 p.m. on Charlotte Avenue between the Capitol and War Memorial Plaza.

In January, three Tennessee Farm Bureau members were runners-up in a national competition to recognize top farmers and agriculturalists. Each will be presented with a Case IH tractor.

The festivities continue on Tuesday, March 24 starting at 8 a.m. with displays from agricultural organizations, including outdoor exhibits of live animals and farm equipment at the entrance of Legislative Plaza on 6th Avenue. At 9 a.m., lawmakers will compete in a corn shucking/shelling contest. The Farm and Forest Families of Tennessee organization will present a check to Second Harvest Food Bank of Middle Tennessee in honor of contest participants.

Tennessee Celebrates Agriculture Day

Monday, March 16, 2015 | 03:07 pm
Rep. John Forgety milks a cow during Ag Day on the Hill 2014
Rep. John Forgety milks a cow during Ag Day on the Hill 2014

NASHVILLE—Governor Bill Haslam has proclaimed March 18 as Agriculture Day in Tennessee. This day coincides with National Agriculture Day to celebrate the abundance provided by the farms and producers of America.

“We thank Gov. Haslam for recognizing the influence of agriculture on our state,” Commissioner of Agriculture Julius Johnson said. “As the world population soars, the demand for food, fiber and fuel continues to grow. Tennessee is helping to meet that demand.”

Agriculture contributes to almost everything we eat, use and wear every day. The purpose of Agriculture Day is to unite Tennesseans and to appreciate the role the industry plays in our lives.

State Soil Conservation Committee to Meet March 31

Friday, March 13, 2015 | 06:37 am

NASHVILLE - The State Soil Conservation Committee will meet March 31 at 10 a.m. CDT in the Holeman Building at Ellington Agricultural Center, located at 424 Hogan Rd. in Nashville.

The agenda includes approval of previous meeting minutes, reports from partner agencies, organizations and ex-officio members, a review of Conflict of Interest Policies, Soil Conservation District appointments and general discussion. The meeting is open to the public.

Security Camera Leads to Theft Arrests

Tuesday, March 10, 2015 | 09:05 am
Stolen Calves Recovered
Stolen Calves Recovered

NASHVILLE— A livestock owner’s simple security measure led to the arrest of three suspected cattle thieves. 

After two dairy calves were stolen from a Bedford County farm in January, the cattle owner installed a trail camera to monitor activity on the farm.  That camera captured the theft of a third calf in February.

Using the video evidence, detectives with the Bedford County and Moore County Sheriff’s departments worked with Agricultural Crime Unit investigator Michael Whaley to develop suspects.

Tennessee Dairy Promotion Committee to Meet March 20

Friday, March 06, 2015 | 09:44 am

NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Dairy Promotion Committee will meet March 20 at 9 a.m. CDT in the Moss Administration Building conference room at Ellington Agricultural Center, located at 440 Hogan Road in Nashville. 

The agenda includes approval of the previous meeting minutes, a report by the Southeast United Dairy Industry Association on recent promotional activities, and a review of the committee’s financials and promotion program plans for 2015. The meeting is open to the public.

Celebrating Weights and Measures Week

Tuesday, February 24, 2015 | 10:01 am
Motor fuel must be sampled and tested
Motor fuel must be sampled and tested

NASHVILLE— The Tennessee Department of Agriculture will celebrate Weights and Measures week March 1-7, 2015. Weights and measures inspectors keep pace with rapidly advancing technologies to ensure fairness in the marketplace. This year’s theme, Weights and Measures:  On the Path to Tomorrow, recognizes this vital element of our free-market society.

“You should get what you are paying for, and inspectors play an essential role in the health of the economy,” Commissioner Julius Johnson said. “We value our weights and measures system as a crucial service to the citizens and businesses of Tennessee.” 

Fueling stations and grocery stores employ state-of-the-art weighing and measuring equipment.  Railway cars and highway vehicles are weighed while in motion. Motor fuel must be sampled and tested. Those are the areas in which inspectors use their skills to guarantee accuracy and equity for the consumer and a level playing field for commerce.

Extreme Weather Can Impact Livestock

Wednesday, February 18, 2015 | 04:31 pm

NASHVILLE— As the temperatures plummet and the icy conditions take hold, the Tennessee Department of Agriculture is urging citizens to take steps to keep livestock safe and healthy.

“Most livestock tolerate cold weather well,” state veterinarian Dr. Charles Hatcher said. “However, extreme temperature changes can have a dramatic impact on an animal’s health and performance.”

Tennessee Viticulture Advisory Board to Meet

Tuesday, February 10, 2015 | 02:58 pm

NASHVILLE – The Tennessee Viticulture Advisory Board will meet Feb. 27 at 10 a.m. CST at the Nashville Airport Marriott, 600 Marriott Dr., Nashville, Tenn.

The agenda includes consideration of current VAB law and recommendations for potential changes. Nominations for the board will also be gathered for submission.

The meeting is open to the public. Individuals interested in addressing the board should plan to arrive prior to the start of the meeting in order to be placed on the agenda.

State Soil Conservation Committee to Meet

Thursday, February 05, 2015 | 04:08 pm

The State Soil Conservation Committee will meet Feb. 22 at 5 p.m. CST at the DoubleTree by Hilton Hotel located at 1770 Highway 45 Bypass in Jackson, Tenn.

The agenda includes approval of previous meeting minutes, a presentation by Tennessee Conservation Districts Employees Association president Susan Bates, reports from ex-officio member and partner agencies, review of old business and new business, and general discussion. The meeting is open to the public.