MU Extension project helps 93-year-old farmer – Houston Herald

Farmers like 93-year-old Harry Keutzer don’t quit just because their body parts slow down.

His hens, cows and pets depend on him. So do customers at the Kansas City-area farmers markets where he sells produce, eggs and hand-loomed rugs.

The Missouri AgrAbility Project, through University of Missouri Extension, Lincoln University Cooperative Extension and the Brain Injury Association of Missouri, provides aging farmers with information, referrals and a variety of resources to keep working.

Lincoln University Extension farm and AgrAbility outreach worker Susan Jaster carried out an assessment of accessibility at Keutzer’s Lafayette County farm and made recommendations on how to make the home safer and more accessible.

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Harry Keutzer

HARRY KEUTZER

MU Extension state health and safety specialist Karen Funkenbusch said AgrAbility helps farmers with disabilities caused by age, injury or illness to keep farming. The program provides research-based information and appropriate referrals to other agencies as needed.

America’s farm population has been aging rapidly over the last 30 years. According to the USDA’s 2012 Census of Agriculture, released in 2014, the average age of U.S. farmers is 58.3 years. There are now more farmers over 75 than between the ages of 35 and 44, Funkenbusch said.

Keutzer and his daughter-in-law, Stacy, grew 3,000 tomato plants in a high tunnel last year. They also planted a three-acre garden and put in a large plot of potatoes on a neighbor’s garden spot. Stacy picks all of the produce and Harry sorts it. Both wash and pack it.

Mobility is a challenge. When it rains, Keutzer has to stay inside and can’t work. But Keutzer’s energy level and stamina during the three-hour farm assessment surprised Jaster.

“He has the energy and deserves to be able to carry on his active life,” she said.

AgrAbility recommended a different type of scooter to reduce fatigue and help him maneuver around the farm over muddy and rough ground. The program also recommended a hydraulic lift to move pallets from the ground to make it easier to load produce onto the enclosed truck the Keutzers take to farmers markets.

Harry’s weathered hands are rarely idle and his mind remains active with farmer ingenuity. He finds it increasingly difficult to plant, so he and his son, Virgil, built a transplanter for their small tractor. It plants and waters the plant plug and lays weed-barrier plastic.

He uses his scooter to check on 100 chickens and takes buckets of water to livestock. He milks a three-teated cow that provides milk for two calves and a gallon a day for milk, butter, homemade ice cream and tapioca for the Keutzers.

He still enjoys cutting wood. He makes wine and helps his daughter-in-law cut fabric strips to make into loomed rugs. In October, he assisted a calving cow with a difficult birth.

Keutzer grew up working with his brothers on his father’s 500-acre farm at Creighton, Mo. He was so small when he started milking cows that his father had a special milking stool made for him.

He went to a country school until eighth grade. He said boys carried .22-caliber single-shot rifles to school, shooting rabbits and squirrels along the way to feed their families. And all boys had a two-bladed pocketknife, he says, to skin wild game and play “mumblepeg” at recess.

After school each day, he listened to 15 minutes of the Tom Mix cowboy show on the radio before starting chores. The radio wasn’t turned on again until 9:30 p.m., when the family listened to “Amos ’n’ Andy” and the news.

He farmed with a team of horses before buying his first tractor, a Farmall F-20. In 1942, Harry bought his second tractor, an Allis-Chalmers WC, at auction for $870.

He and other farmers anxiously awaited electrification through REA. On Jan. 7, 1945, he and his wife, Johnnie, celebrated her birthday in nearby Clinton. They returned home to a house lit with electricity, and their new Montgomery Ward refrigerator was plugged in and running.

He, his wife and a hired hand traveled the area baling hay from spring to fall. His wife drove the tractor as he put the 8 ½-foot wires into the baler. The hired hand tied the bales. It was hard work, but Keutzer and his wife made enough money to buy a new Kaiser automobile with cash.

In 1952, the Keutzers moved to southern Minnesota, where his uncles lived. He rented 320 acres on shares and was one of the first to plant soybean. Corn was selling for $1.25 a bushel under a government price-protection system.

Times were different then, Harry recalls. Farm implement dealers and oil companies helped young farmers get started by extending credit until crops were sold. He bought a four-row cultivator, planter, disk, a new corn picker and two new tractors – a John Deere 720 diesel and an IH Farmall 400 – on credit.

He and Johnnie also opened their home to 50 foster children during their time in Minnesota. The dinner table was often set for more than 20. He taught the children the value of rural life, hard work and being self-sufficient.

In 1959, his father quit farming and he returned to Missouri. Harry rented the farm next to his father’s and had 1,000 acres of South Grand River bottomland.

They farmed the home place until 1972, when Truman Reservoir took much of their land. They sold out and returned to Minnesota to a 45-head dairy farm.

His son met Stacy and married. She wasn’t a farm girl but quickly learned how to care for 45 bucket calves. They farmed there until Harry’s wife died, then moved to Iowa. He worked until he was 81 as a night watchman for Spee-Dee Delivery Services before moving to Napoleon.

Keutzer’s farming practices and lifestyle evolved as times and technology changed. He keeps current with technology by following farm auctions and news online.

Just as he learned to incorporate new farming methods throughout his life, he has learned to adjust as a farming nonagenarian.

AgrAbility gives him the resources to continue doing what he loves to do-provide food to feed America.

National Institute of Food and Agriculture, an agency of USDA, administers the AgrAbility Project.

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Brighten up your home – Waterbury Republican American

Gorgeous Bull Skull by Aureus Arts

CHICAGO TRIBUNENo need to break out the crayons. Beat the winter grays with bright stuff for your home. Here are some products to get you started.

1. Scottish designer Jonathan Saunders’ cheeky designs make clashing colors harmonious. His Herringbone carpet for The Rug Company is a case in point. $129 per square foot at The Rug Company, Chicago.

2. Primary colors and simple organic shapes mark the chairs from the Swedish design trio Claesson Koivisto Rune for Tacchini. The Kelly E Chair is $2,300, at Orange Skin, Chicago.

3. The Lindona Necklace from Songa Designs, an eco-friendly accessories line made by women in Rwanda as a way to establish their economic independence. Each handmade piece is made of repurposed natural materials such as banana leaf fiber, sisal plant, and cow horn. $48 at songadesigns. com.

4. Improve your mood by upholstering Vitra’s Mariposa sofa in a bold hue. Pick from dozens of colors including poppy red, grass green, magenta and lemon, pictured. $7,520 at hivemodern.com.

5. Four shades in different hues give the Tam Tam suspension lamp by Design Fabien Dumas a colorful personality. $1,093 at hivemodern.com.

6. Give time the attention it deserves with a clock that steals the proverbial show. Normann Copenhagen’s Watch Me Wall Clock is $50 at normann-copenhagen.com

7. Studio Job’s paper lamp for Moooi is inspired by classic lamps but draws on a crafty material. $1,703.00 at moooi.com.

8. Warm up any seat in the room with Maharam’s Millerstripe Pillow with fabric designed by famed 20th-century industrial designer Alexander Girard. The 17-inch pillow is 92 percent wool and 8 percent nylon and sports a cotton insert with a duck feather fill. $175 at maharam.com.

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'Not One Drop Of Blood': Cattle Are Being Mysteriously Mutilated And Killed In Eastern Oregon – NW News Network

Outside of Pendleton, Oregon, Terry Anderson’s cattle have messed up his irrigation spigots. Again.

The cows knock them down pretty much daily, and he has to fix ‘em. He jumps out of his side-by-side vehicle and deftly rights them again or screws on a new spigot if they’re really bad.

“Cows just rub on stuff for the heck of it,” Terry Anderson says with a smile. “They love to scratch.”

Not One Drop Of Blood

Right now in remote eastern Oregon, a serial crime spree is unfolding. Young purebred bulls are mysteriously showing up dead. Cowboys recently found several animals with body parts precisely removed — and it’s happened just like this before in the West.

It happened to Anderson back in the 1980s, when one of the rancher’s mother cows was mysteriously killed overnight. From his homeplace, Anderson points to the exact spot where he found her on top of a mountain. He’s never gotten over it. 

As he remembers, Anderson says he had just been near the spot the night before. The next morning, his cow was laid over and dead, her udder removed with something razor sharp. 

“And not one drop of blood anywhere,” Anderson says. 

Everything You Do Leaves Tracks

Over 200 miles away — outside Princeton, Oregon — Andie Davies is canning green chili peppers in her remote ranch kitchen. The air smells spicy, warm. She wipes her strong, working hands before giving a shake. 

Another cut up and bloodless cow was found two years ago a mile from her homeplace. A hunter discovered the carcass near a water trough, just hours after the kill. 

Her son, a butcher at the time, inspected the slain animal. He couldn’t understand how the cuts were made so clean. 

Davies says she and her husband rode strategic circles around the area with four wheelers to try and find vehicle tracks, horse tracks, something. They never found any. And in this country, “everything you do leaves tracks,” Davies says. 

Silvies Valley Ranch

Over an hour away, north of Burns, cowboys whistle and talk low to eager cattle dogs. 

Dust from hooves, both cloven and shod, creates a fog in the early light. As they gather the cow-calf pairs out of a large draw, the animals call to each other. 

Silvies Valley Ranch is nearly the size of Chicago. This summer, five young purebred bulls were cut down in their prime. Colby Marshall, is the vice president of the ranch.

To understand better, we rattle up a two-track U.S. Forest Service road. 

“And we’re gonna drive in here,” Marshall says, “oh a little ways and then we’ll get out and take a little walk to where one the bulls was found. And the carcass is still there.”

These animals were found bloodless, with their tongues and genitals precisely removed.

Coming upon one of the dead bulls is an eerie scene. The forest is hot and still, apart from a raven’s repeating caw. The bull looks like a deflated plush toy. It smells. Weirdly, there are no signs of buzzards, coyotes or other scavengers. His red coat is as shiny as if he was going to the fair. 

Marshall says these young animals were just reaching their top value as breeding bulls. Now the animals worth as much as $7,000 each, and their collective future progeny worth hundreds of thousands of dollars, are lost.

Finding these rangey young Hereford bulls in this remote country can sometimes take the ranch’s experienced cowboys days. Marshall suspects a coordinated effort. 

“It’s rugged,” Marshall says. “I mean this is the frontier. … If some person, or persons, has the ability to take down a 2,000-pound range bull, you know, it’s not inconceivable that they wouldn’t have a lot of problems dealing with a 180-pound cowboy.” 

Staff are now required to ride in pairs, and encouraged to carry arms. 

Alien (And Other) Theories

In Burns, Dan Jenkins is a deputy with the Harney County Sheriff’s Office. Jenkins has been working the cattle cases, and gotten calls from all over. 

“A lot of people lean toward the aliens,” Jenkins says. “One caller had told us to look for basically a depression under the carcass. ‘Cause he said that the alien ships will kinda beam the cow up and do whatever they are going to do with it. Then they just drop them from a great height.” 

Jenkins says the cases have been tough, with little evidence and no credible leads. He personally inspected four of the animals. He has a running list on his white board scrawled with green marker with the top theories. 

“Another one told us we should run like a geiger counter type thing around the animal and guarantees that there would be radiation there,” Jenkins says. “And the number one on the list there, he thinks it’s the North Vietnamese army.”

Whatever or whoever the cause, what’s clear is it isn’t bears, wolves, cougars or poisonous plants. Nor were the animals shot.

The FBI won’t confirm or deny it’s looking into the killings. 

Little Time To Dwell

Back on bull-breeder Terry Anderson’s spread near Pendleton, he’s got his solid-set sprinklers running now.

The spigots hiss and sputter, then click, click. 

What happened to his mother cow decades ago, and these new cases, leaves him with an uneasy feeling.

“But you just go on,” Anderson says. “‘Cause the next day has a lot of projects to get done, too.”

Ranching, after all, leaves little time to dwell.

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World Dairy Expo Championship Dairy Product Contest Announces Hiland Dairy Products Among "The Best of the Best" – PerishableNews


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SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Hiland Dairy’s Strawberry Yogurt made in Wichita, Kansas, Whole Chocolate Milk made in Little Rock, Arkansas, Bulgarian Buttermilk made in Chandler, Oklahoma, Natural Sour Cream made in Norman, Oklahoma, Sassy Salsa Dip made in Omaha, Nebraska and Vanilla Ice Cream made in Tyler, Texas were first-place winners, or “Best of the Best” at the 2019 World Dairy Expo (WDE) Championship Dairy Product Contest. The WDE contest is the only one of its kind in North America that includes all dairy products. This year’s contest, sponsored by the Wisconsin Dairy Products Assn. (WDPA), received a record number 1,536 entries for cheese, butter, fluid milk, yogurt, cottage cheese, ice cream, sour cream, sherbet, cultured milk, sour cream dips, whipping cream, whey and creative/innovative products from dairy processors throughout North America.

In addition to securing six first-place “Best of the Best” awards, Hiland Dairy won four additional awards for sour cream-based dips, 2% white milk and reduced-fat chocolate milk. See the entire list at the end of this release.

“We are honored to have so many of our products and processing facilities recognized at a national level,” said Rick Beaman, Vice-President, Hiland Dairy Foods Company. “Our goal is to provide the tastiest, freshest, locally-made dairy products for our customers. Being recognized with multiple WDE awards supports that goal.”

“This year’s contest was extremely successful, reflecting how much dairy processors have come to embrace this unique and special event,” says Brad Legreid, executive director, Wisconsin Dairy Products Association which conducts the annual World Dairy Expo Championship Dairy Product Contest. “As the only all-dairy product contest of its kind in the world, the dairy industry has quickly learned the myriad benefits accrued from participating in the contest. Winning companies parlay their success into unprecedented marketing and retail sales opportunities, while other companies receive valuable insights from the fifty highly-trained sensory experts whom judge their products.” Everyone benefits from this contest, including the 1st place winners, all participating companies, food banks and college students pursuing dairy careers. This contest is a complete win- win for everyone in the dairy industry.”

Judging was held on August 20-22 at MATC Culinary Arts School in Madison, WI.

The Hiland Dairy Processing Plants that were awarded top honors include:

  • Hiland Dairy, Chandler, Oklahoma
    • First Place for Bulgarian Buttermilk (Cultured Milk Category)
    • Second Place for French Onion Dip (Sour Cream-Based Dips Category)
  • Hiland Dairy, Little Rock, Arkansas
    • First Place for Whole Chocolate Milk
    • Third Place for 2% White Milk
  • Hiland Dairy, Omaha, Nebraska
    • First Place for Sassy Salsa Dip
    • Third Place for Jalapeno Dip
  • Hiland Dairy, Norman, Oklahoma
    • First Place for Natural Sour Cream
  • Hiland Dairy, Tyler, Texas
    • First Place for Regular Vanilla Ice Cream
  • Hiland Dairy, Kansas City, Missouri
    • Second Place for Lowfat Chocolate Milk 2%
  • Hiland Dairy, Wichita, Kansas
    • First Place for Strawberry Yogurt
  • Other Hiland-owned plants receiving awards include:
    • Belfonte Dairy, Kansas City, Missouri, First Place for Lowfat Blueberry Yogurt

About Hiland Dairy Foods Company
Hiland Dairy, based in Springfield, Missouri, is a leading farmer-owned dairy foods company. Their widely loved products include ice cream, milk, butter, cheese and eggnog. Hiland Dairy has expanded beyond dairy and has a wide variety of other beverages, such as Red Diamond Tea, iced coffees, lemonade and fresh juices.

As a farmer-owned company, Hiland employs more than 2500 people across Arkansas, Kansas, Nebraska, Oklahoma and Texas. Hiland’s farmer-owners are just miles from the Hiland processing plants where our fresh milk goes from the farm to the shelves within 48 hours. This speedy process is environmentally friendly and gives the signature fresh taste to all Hiland products! Hiland strongly believes in community and is committed to our environment. Using eco-friendly processes, Hiland continues to provide wholesome dairy to a healthy world.

Learn more at www.HilandDairy.com  

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This company uses machine learning to tell cows apart from each other – Livemint

Have you ever been able to tell one cow apart from another? Well, your phone can. Like human faces, cows and buffaloes also have specific features on their faces that can be recognised, says Aashna Singh, co-founder of a startup called MoooFarm. The company has developed a machine learning-based solution that can tell cows apart and help deal with the problem of stray cattle.

“If you can unlock your phone with your face, why can’t it recognise cattle?” Singh asks. That’s the question the company set out to solve when they first came up with the solution. MoooFarm’s business actually revolves around developing technology solutions for farmers, helping them manage their cattle better.

According to Singh, MoooFarm’s algorithm was developed by taking numerous photos of cows’ faces. The company took photos from different angles, in different lighting and even in different backgrounds. For instance, looking at a cow’s photo with different backgrounds teaches the ML model that it won’t always have a barn wall as the background.

Similarly, the different photos also help it distinguish between different breeds, ages and so on. The algorithm takes 300 pixels from the photo of a cow’s face. “They may look the same (to us), but for the algorithm they have absolutely different features,” Singh said. She suggested that while two cows may look the same, there are distinguishing features in their eyes and the muzzle, which the algorithm uses to tell them apart.

Imagine the dot projector on Apple’s iPhones. The philosophy here is the same, but it doesn’t use infrared technology, instead depending on a basic smartphone camera. Taking photos of the cattle’s face from different angles serves the same purpose that rotating your face in front of the iPhone’s camera does when you’re training the FaceID algorithm to identify your face.

The company is currently working on identifying what the minimum resolution or quality of a smartphone needs to be where its algorithm works. Singh did say though that they have been testing with “basic” smartphones.

MoooFarm claims its facial recognition model is 95.7% accurate at the moment and the company is refining it further right now. The facial recognition technology won a $30,000 award from the World Bank in the Data Analytics Category.

But why do we need facial recognition for cows? According to Singh, the fact that cattle look similar opens opportunities for insurance fraud. The company is working with insurance firms to use its technology for telling cattle apart. Instead of existing solutions like RFID or placing tags on a cow’s ear, it can use facial recognition to tell whether the cow in question is insured or not.

Further, you could also use the technology to deal with the problem of stray cattle. According to reports, lack of shelter and food leads to more than a crore stray cattle in the country. Allowing an app to recognise these cattle could help keep them in check. MoooFarm’s solution also helps create a directory for cattle, noting exactly which farmer a cow/buffalo belongs to and other data about it.

MoooFarm isn’t the first company to try facial recognition in cows either. An Irish-startup called Cainthus uses imaging to tell animals apart from each other, using overhead cameras and drones. Researchers at the University of Kentucky had also been working on utilising drone cameras to identify type of cattle. India though, is primarily comprised of farmers with small holdings, making it more difficult to use drones and overhead cameras. Smartphones allow a more personal, accessible and individual solution.

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This one-pot beef stew recipe will ease you right into fall – TODAY

Chef, cookbook author and restaurateur Ryan Scott is swinging by the TODAY kitchen to share a few of his favorite early fall recipes. He shows us how to make braised beef stew and roasted asparagus with a delicious pistachio pesto.

Pinot-Braised Beef Stew with Baby Potatoes and Pearl Onions

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

When the weather starts to turn a little chilly, I can’t wait to make a giant pot of this beef stew. I portion it up and freeze some for my wife to warm up and feed our little one on busy weeknights or when I’m traveling. It’s the perfect make-ahead comfort food for fall suppers.

Quick-Roasted Asparagus with Pistachio Pesto

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

I don’t have a lot of time, but I love to make healthy and delicious food for my family. The great thing about this recipe? I can make a big batch of pesto and keep it in my fridge or freezer, then cook up a batch of any seasonal veggie (asparagus is one of my favorites) in five minutes using my quick-roasting method. When cooking is this easy and delicious, there’s no excuse to not eat your veggies!

If you like those easy autumn recipes, you should also try these:

Maple Glazed Hasselback Butternut Squash

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

Quinn Daly's Chicken Pot Pies

Nathan Congleton / TODAY

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Narendra Modi stresses cow’s importance to rural economy – The Hindu

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on September 11 asserted that livestock had always been vital for the rural economy in India and stressed that his seriousness towards protection of cows could be gauged by the vaccination scheme introduced by the government.

Citing a scheme run by the Rwandan government to tackle malnutrition and poverty through the distribution of cows to elaborate on the role of cows in the rural economy, Mr. Modi explained that as per Rwanda’s scheme a cow was donated to each household.

The first calf produced by the cow is then given to the government, which then donates it to other villagers who don’t have a cow.

‘Works like a chain’

“This works like a chain,” Mr. Modi said, praising the Rwandan model for creating a network of employment. This also helped ensure that the cow, livestock and milk production become a part of the rural economy, he added, speaking at the launch of the National Animal Disease Control Programme (NACDP) in Mathura. The program aims to control and eradicate the Foot & Mouth Disease (FMD) and Brucellosis among livestock in the country.

‘Created a storm’

Asserting that “some people created a storm” after he had visited the African country last year and donated “250 cows” to its villagers, Mr. Modi said it was unfortunate that there were some in the country who were critical of the Centre’s cow conservation policies.

“Some people, the moment the words Om and gai (cow) fall on their ears, their hair stands on end. They think the country has gone [back] to the 16th and 17th centuries,” asserted Mr. Modi.

It was people with such views who left no stone unturned to “destroy” the country, the Prime Minister contended.

Plastic in cows bodies

Later in the evening, Mr. Modi tweeted that he was saddened to see heaps of plastic being removed from the bodies of cows being operated at the Pashu Arogya Mela in Mathura.

“This is deplorable and should inspire us to work towards reduced and careful plastic usage,” the PM tweeted.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi assists women segregate plastic waste in Mathura on September 11, 2019. Photo: PIB/PTI

Prime Minister Narendra Modi assists women segregate plastic waste in Mathura on September 11, 2019. Photo: PIB/PTI
 


 

‘Krishna as role model’

In Mathura, Mr. Modi also said that while the world was searching for a role model to protect the environment, India had always had “an inspiration” in Lord Krishna. Imagining Lord Krishna without [his] “love for environment” would be incomplete, the PM said.

More than 600 million cattle in the country are set to be vaccinated in an effort to mitigate the two diseases, Brucellosis and FMD (locally known as muh paka bimari), as part of the Centre’s ₹12,652 crore programmes.

The PM also launched the National Artificial Insemination Programme and a countrywide workshop in the Krishi Vigyan Kendras (KVKs) in all the 687 districts of the country on vaccination and disease management, artificial insemination and productivity.

The Swachhta hi Seva Programme was also launched by him with the focus on reducing the usage of Single Use Plastic in the country. The PM appealed to people to rid their homes, offices and workplaces of single use plastic by October 2.

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