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.


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

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

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

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

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

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This runaway cow is so elusive, they're calling her 'ghost in the darkness' – Mother Nature Network

You may not imagine cows as being particularly slippery. While these giant, plodding animals certainly possess a lot of surprising qualities, elusiveness has never been one of them.

But there’s a cow in Alaska — somewhere in the state, of that we’re fairly certain — who would beg to differ.

That would be Betsy, a true bovine miracle.

Six months ago, the 3-year-old decided to quit the rodeo, a job that required her to be featured at kids’ events around the state.

When someone left a gate unlocked, Betsy ghosted from her Anchorage pen.

A black cow running.
Betsy isn’t the first cow to try to make a go of things in the wild. (Photo: Stephen P Baker/Shutterstock)

And, like the savviest of fugitives, she made for a place that would make tracking her the most challenging: the 4,000 acres of rugged anonymity known as Far North Bicentennial Park.

“She got right to where she needed to be and it was, ‘Whew!’,” Frank Koloski tells MNN. “We spent countless hours days and nights trying to round her up.”

The sprawling park, nestled up against Anchorage, couldn’t be a better space for people — or animals who weigh more than 600 pounds — to disappear.

“The amount of grass and foliage that is available to her with the enormous amounts of open water that is still out there, it’s making it really difficult,” Koloski explains.

And despite glimpses of the animal reported on social media by local hikers and skiers, all the traps and technologies and come-hithers in the world have failed to bring her back to the rodeo.

“I get the late-night phone calls from APD — our police department — if somebody happened to see her pop her head out road side,” Koloski says.

“By the time I get there — I don’t live far away — I’ll see her tracks. I’ll walk the tracks for a little bit and she’s disappeared. She’ll blend right in with the spruce trees.”

Betsy wouldn’t be the first of her kind to go fugitive. A cow in Poland made headlines last year when she was spotted, days after escaping from a farm, running with a herd of wild bison in Bialowieza Forest. Another Polish cow managed to capture the hearts of the entire country when she swam across a lake in a bold bid for freedom. Sadly, that cow’s life was no bovine comedy — she died when a veterinary team finally managed to sedate her.

Some cows just won’t let themselves be taken alive.

But Betsy’s old home isn’t all that shabby. It’s a sprawling stretch of land where the animal, a cross between an Angus and a Scottish highlander, roams happily with her own herd.

Betsy, with her extra-thick coat of hair, doesn’t seem to mind the winter weather either.

“Cattle are very very adapting to being outside and surviving,” Koloski says. “They can acclimate to really any weather.

“The herd that she comes from — they’re already back in the pasture.”

In a way, she may even be taunting her pursuers.

Aside from her exasperated owner, who calls her his “ghost in the darkness,” she has baffled dogs, drones, search teams, as well as the local cycling community.

Indeed, Betsy is even teaching law enforcement a few new tricks.

SWAT team leader Mark Huelskoetter says the cow has become a useful training tool for a team that doesn’t get a lot of real-life action.

“It’s a good training opportunity for our guys, since we’re going to be training anyway, to maybe get something good out of this — find this dude’s cow,” Huelskoetter told the Anchorage Daily News.

But still, all the blips on the drone’s aerial surveillance map have come to nothing. And the drones have returned to their hangars, likely for good.

A Scottish highlander in the forest
Thanks to the breed’s thick coat. a Scottish highlander like Betsy is unlikely to be bothered by the cold. (Photo:

If there’s a message Betsy might be sending to her former owner, it’s this: She’s done with the rodeo.

And for his part, Koloski seems to have gotten the memo, admitting that this cow just may not want to come home at all.

Indeed, he’s seen a lot of comments from people who have spotted her suggesting the cow is “definitely not starving.” And just maybe, this is the life Betsy wants for herself.

“I truly feel that,” he says. “I can’t, by no means, attempt to read a cow’s mind, but clearly if any animal is content, which it’s obvious from everybody that has seen her …”

“I don’t want to surrender. I may have no choice.”

This runaway cow is so elusive, they're calling her 'ghost in the darkness'

After bolting from the rodeo, an Alaskan cow named Betsy has evaded drones, search parties and even a SWAT team.

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Reward increased to find suspects in the Jefferson Davis cattle shootings – KLFY

Jefferson Davis Parish, La. – The reward to find the suspects in a cattle shooting that happened in Jefferson Davis Parish has been increased. 

The Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) Livestock Brand Commission and the Jefferson Davis Parish Sheriff’s office are offering a reward of up to $2,200 for information that leads to the arrest and conviction of the individual(s) responsible for shooting five Brangus cows in Jefferson Davis Parish. "The Jefferson Davis Parish Cattlemen's Association is adding $200 and Lake Charles farmer, Callen Odom, is adding $1,000 towards the reward for a total of $2,200," Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain, D.V.M., said.

     Jefferson Davis Parish Sheriff Ivy Woods said, "Detectives are working with Livestock Brand Commission agents on this incident and hopefully someone will come forward with information that leads to capturing the persons involved in this crime."

     Investigators said five cows were shot in the head on Sunday, Jan. 13 in a pasture off of Faul Road and Lone Pine Road, north of Welsh with a small-caliber weapon. The animals are expected to recover from the injuries.

     Anyone with information on this crime is urged to call Livestock Brand Commission Crime Stoppers at 1-800-558-9741 or the Jeff Davis Sheriff’s office at 337-821-2100. All calls are anonymous and you could earn up to a $2,200 cash reward for information which leads to the arrest and conviction of the person or persons responsible for the crime.

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Cow on the lam: rodeo cow loose in Anchorage, Alaska for 6 months –

A rodeo cow named Betsy has evaded capture for six months as she wanders the trails of Alaska's biggest city, the cow's owner said.  

The 3-year-old cow "busted out" of a pen before participating in junior events at the Father's Day Rodeo in Anchorage, rodeo promoter Frank Koloski told the Anchorage Daily News.

Betsy headed to the Hilltop Ski Area and was spotted grazing on slopes during the summer, Koloski said. She then moved to the network of trails that crisscross the Anchorage Hillside when snow fell. Trail users began spotting her in the fall, posting about their sightings on social media and giving Betsy near-celebrity status.

With a rotating crew of others, Koloski said he has spent "hours, days probably" searching for the cow. Anchorage police, animal control authorities and the Bureau of Land Management have relayed information about the cow's whereabouts, but she continues to elude him.

"We're out days. It's nights. It's weekends," Koloski said. "If we get a nice night with a full moon, we go out as a group.

"The forests just outside the city still have plenty of grass in tree wells where the snow hasn't touched, Koloski said. Betsy also has access to fresh water sources.

"This cow comes from an area where she's been very self-sufficient," Koloski said. People have tried to lure the cow with food, but that's not a good idea, he said.

"I know deep down this cow doesn't want to be caught," Koloski said.

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Kevin Gates Says There's No Beef with Boosie, But Issues Deadly Warning – TMZ

Kevin Gates

No Beef with Boosie …

But I'll Do Life if Anyone Crosses Me

1/15/2019 12:50 AM PST


Kevin Gates claims everything’s cool with fellow Louisiana rapper Boosie now, but he has a warning shot to anyone else thinking about doing him dirty.

The Baton Rouge MC sat down with Raquel Harper for a new episode of BET’s “Raq Rants,” and he insists rumors of a long-standing feud with Boosie are overblown. Boosie was tried and acquitted in the murder of one of Kevin’s rap affiliates.

Kevin now claims he doesn’t have problems with anyone, but also told Raq … he wouldn’t hesitate to “do a life sentence” if anyone tests him. 

You gotta see how he says it. It’s pretty intense, especially because his toddler son was sitting right next to him at the time.

For what it’s worth, Boosie did seem to confirm they’d squashed all hate last year by recruiting Kevin to play his music festival.

Check out Kevin’s full interview on “Raq Rants,” Tuesday night at 11 PM on BET. On the West Coast, if you have Dish or DirecTV, it’s on at 8 PM.

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Tempting, Tasty Ways To Be Wooed By Tampa Bay – Forbes

Florida’s pretty city by the Bay shows off its cool personality these days at plenty of head-turning, tasty hotspots. Buzz-worthy? You bet. Beloved classics as well as razzle-dazzle newbies make a vacay in Tampa Bay deliciously fun. Here are favorites:

The Epicurean hotel lobby, where a state-of-the-art Culinary Theatre showcases classes.© Epicurean Hotel

A GREAT GOOD NIGHT  Unpack your luggage at Epicurean, an Autograph Collection Hotel in Tampa’s Hyde Park District. Hip and handsome, spacious and gracious, this chic boutique property with an eye-catching, heart-calming lobby harbors 137 contemporary guest rooms and suites. Its interior design by The Gettys Group is fashioned in serene earth tones, wine-motif accessories, appealing stonework, reclaimed wood, bead-board paneling, natural texture-rich fabrics, crushed bomber-jacket leathers, butcher-block cabinetry and cowhide rugs. Guest rooms delight with generous rain showers and pantries stashed with top-flight liquors, five half-bottle wine varietals, craft beers, espresso and artisanal snacks. Developed by Mainsail Lodging & Development and the Laxer family, owners of Tampa Bay’s landmark Bern’s Steak House across the street, this hospitality haven celebrates the tasteful life with a devotion to food and wine. Sip and quip with a sommelier in the hotel’s well-balanced, on-site wine shop. Muse with a mixologist about novel cocktails in the lobby bar.

CLASSY RECIPES  At the Epicurean Hotel, attend lively cooking demonstrations (bonus: eat the results) at its Culinary Theatre, which spotlights gifted Tampa chefs, such as Michael Buttacavoli of Cena and Beth Lukens of Cloud 9 Confections, who teaches the popular “Cupcakes & Cocktails” (video above) — replete with bartender tips.

NOSTALGIA UPDATED  Dine in the Epicurean Hotel’s Élevage restaurant, mastered by award-winning executive chef Chad Johnson. He and his accomplished chef de cuisine Jonathan Atanacio refresh time-honored fine fare with modern imagination: bronzed scallops with maque choux, verjus and Fresno chili pepper; shrimp-and-lemon grits with glossed vegetables, chervil and absinthe; and sorghum-glazed filet mignon accompanied by goat’s milk pommes purée, watercress, hen-of-the-wood mushrooms and truffle vinaigrette. Then scoot to the rooftop for late-night revelry at EDGE Social Drinkery, an al fresco lounge with city views.

Chill out by tuning into the couples room at the hotel’s Spa Evangeline.© Epicurean Hotel

SPA-LICIOUS  Epicurean Hotel’s full-service, elegant Spa Evangeline pampers with fruit scrubs, fresh herb-infused oils, an agave nectar scalp massage and grape-centric treatments, such as the “Lost In Wine Country Body Treatment” (intriguing idea, yes?) — a skin-smoothing crushed cabernet scrub, warm head-to-toe honey drizzle and steamy shower followed by hydrating, buttery-like rub.

Osteria’s tender braised octopus.© Laura Manske

CELEBRITY EATS  Italian-born, celeb chef Fabio Viviani has touched down in Tampa to serve up soothing, packed-with-flavor Italian cuisine at his new Osteria Bar & Kitchen in a Downtown see-and-be-seen, rustically refined space (with patio) — a collaboration with Lanfranco Pescante and David Anderson of Nocturnal Hospitality Group. This charismatic and funny restaurateur, cookbook author and “fan favorite” from Bravo-TV’s Top Chef Season 5 champions a necklace of eateries across the USA. Leap a deep dive into Osteria’s Mediterranean menu: housemade pastas with savory sauces and sensational seasonings; wild-caught fish and seafood; fired pizza crowned with an ample array of toppings; and slow-roasted meats. Especially notable are the Chianti-braised short ribs with creamy polenta, hazelnuts and zesty parsley gremolata; the squid ink gargarnelli with rock shrimp, cherry tomatoes, white wine and sea urchin uni butter; and rigatoni presented in an oversized Mason jar — its sauce of Parmesan crème, house-smoked bacon (can be omitted), Brussels sprouts, farmed egg yolk and Grana Padano cheese is vigorously shaken tableside by the waiter and then poured with aplomb into the serving bowl. Hungry yet? Cocktail aficionados appreciate the gusto of Osteria’s drinks, such as the Smokey Italian Mezcal and the Maple Walnut Old-Fashioned. Finish up with a Bombolini made memorable with vanilla custard, Key lime curd and chocolate ganache.

Bern’s Steak House — like no other.© Laura Manske

MEATY ICON  The boxy, white, virtually windowless exterior of the building that holds Bern’s Steak House belies the dynamic dining experience within. Step through the double set of doors and a singular Tampa luxury unfolds: immense in size and impressive in clubby adornment — ruby-red walls, dark carved woods, a golden-statue staircase, chandeliers and antique paintings. The restaurant was founded in 1956 by ambitious New York natives Bern and Gert Laxer, a husband-and-wife team whose son David, now president and owner, stays true to the family’s mission to maintain excellent eats even as the company’s purview has grown. This mesmerizing extravaganza is a go-to spot for jubilant engaged couples (or those ready to pop The Question), wedding anniversary celebrants, new job high-fivers, school graduates and birthday merry-makers. Racking up accolades galore, Bern’s Steak House won a James Beard Award in 2016 and Wine Spectator’s prestigious Grand Award annually since 1981. 

Eight rooms of various shapes and sizes seat diners. The many-paged menu with detailed cuts of beef (as well as appetizers, other entrées and sides) may take engrossing minutes to read, although waiter pros help eaters zoom in on preferred dishes. Chef de cuisine Haptead Habeb and his team keep expert reins on a bustling, galloping operation. Highlights include French onion soup, chateaubriand, rack of lamb, American red snapper à la plancha and charcoal-grilled jumbo shrimp on creamed corn and beurre blancWith dinner reservations, join an optional eye-opening tour of the kitchen and part of the massive wine cellar; there are 6,800 different selections with more than half-a-million bottles, overseen by wine director Eric Renaud and senior sommelier Brad Dixon. It is said that Bern’s owns the largest private wine collection in the world. The ornate bar — run by manager Doug Hoe with ace know-how by director of spirits Nate Wilson — delivers hundreds of stellar stirred and shaken libations every night. Upstairs is The Harry Waugh Dessert Room, named after one of Bern’s mentors, where 48 private booths with tables are encircled by floor-to-ceiling redwood wine casks. Each secluded refuge has a six-channel stereo system, which diners can switch to classical, contemporary, jazz, new age and progressive recordings as well as to live music as performed by a pianist, who tickles ivory keys nearby the maître d’ station and who will take song requests from patrons via a phone wired into their booth. Pastry chefs Amber Menendez, Heather Birr and their team of nearly 20 sweets-makers prepare approximately 50 dessert choices. The macadamia nut ice cream is a winner. At this unusual and alluring hideaway for confection consumption, more than 1,000 after-dinner drinks, cordials and dessert wines are available, plus 200 scotches.

At Rooster & The Till: Fantastic flavors mingle.© Laura Manske

SMALL PLATES, BIG IMPACT  Chef Ferrell Alvarez — a shooting star in Tampa Bay’s culinary sky — and his longtime business partner and pal Ty Rodriguez (who tunes the wine list) wow a devoted clientele and waves of eager new fans at Rooster & The Till in Tampa’s Seminole Heights neighborhood. Its visionary small plate combos are ever-evolving, even audacious: Unexpected flavors, textures, aromas and colors strategically mix and match. The awe is that such a union of diverse details work together so well. Order the charred-salty-smoky-crunchy Brussels sprouts with tasso ham and aioli; barbacoa squash with raisin mole, radish, escabeche and epazote cream; beets with avocado, mango, pepitas and chili; gnocchi with short ribs, smoked ricotta, stewed tomatoes, and spicy pickled peperonata; and lamb top round with eggplant mango amba, fermented beet, marcona almonds and skhug. The Instagram-worthy cheese plate and its accompaniments are frequently changed. Alvarez and Rodriguez’s motto is “Teamwork Makes the Dream Work.” Their chef de cuisine Brian Lampe is key to this success and the server staff rocks, too. Rooster & The Till recharges and invigorates its creative zone via fraternization with other local chefs as well — a “be better by sharing and caring” vibe. At the squared bar, tell the mixologist your favored spirit and flavors, then let a surprise cocktail be born. Eye the to-and-fro in the open kitchen — like watching a dance. In the usually packed dining room, simply decorated with artisan tiles and succulents in planters on tables, notice the steady hum of conversations, the clink of glasses, the laughter…the win.

Tampa Heights: a revival in the making.© Laura Manske

FOOD HALL HAPPY  Tampa Heights neighborhood is undergoing a rebirth (ripe for real estate investors). Its energizing new 22,000-square-foot Armature Works is set in a restored former train trolley barn perched on the bank of the Hillsborough River. This pleasing gathering place with community-building activities boasts tall ceilings, natural light, an open floor plan, communal seating (dig the leather sofas), co-working spaces and events (its Show + Tell interactive culinary and wine-tasting classroom shines) — with more than a dozen on-the-ball curated restaurants and bars, among them these three:

A warm greeting at Steelbach.© Laura Manske

BEEFEATERS  Steelbach, led by carnivore-savvy executive chef Nathan Hardin, is a Southern-inspired chophouse in Armature with an oak-and-mesquite open fire grille. Its grass-fed cattle are raised on a range about two-and-a-half-hours east of Tampa. A roaring fireplace, exposed brick walls, sumptuous bar, cushy indoor banquettes and outdoor patio tables, and an extensive whiskey collection are welcoming. Order the popovers with smoked honey butter; sweet corn soup; deviled eggs; Maud’s fried chicken; and spit-roasted chicken, too.

ITALIAN INSPIRATION  At Ava Restaurant’s outpost pizzeria at Armature, executive chef Joshua Hernandez is dedicated daily to perfecting his pizza. Using a natural sourdough starter, the dough rises over three days before he adds locally sourced ingredients and then fires the pies in a wood-burning oven. Bite, chew, smile and dream of Naples.

FRENCH FLAIR  Chef Brad Sobo at Cru Cellars — a swanky Armature bar — finesses steak frites; roast chicken; duck confit with onion soubise, fig jam and fennel straws; and roasted baby carrots with ginger, miso, basil, chimichurri and macadamias. The wine list is stocked with small batch productions from around the world; choose from more than 35 wines or seven wine flights. It also regularly hosts sociable wine education seminars. Stop by Cru Cellars for a quick swirl or stay longer for a dining whirl stacking multiple Farmer’s Platters: artisanal cheeses and charcuterie. Voila!

Columbia’s Café Room is the original 60-seat space with mahogany bar that opened in 1905.© Columbia Restaurant

LATIN LEGEND  A cornerstone of Tampa Bay’s historic, fascinating and colorful Ybor City neighborhood is Columbia — Florida’s oldest continually operating restaurant. Since 1905, the Hernandez – Gonzmart family, now in its fourth and fifth generations, has owned and managed this commitment to Spanish and Cuban cuisine, expanding the festively decorated property over the years from a bar-and-sandwich shop to more than 1,700 seats in 15 interconnected dining rooms that stretch an entire block. Gustatory trendsetting or avant-garde fusions here? Nope. Go, instead, for an authentic, comforting, special slice of Tampa past and present, cherished and venerated.

Built in 1937, Columbia’s Patio Dining Room resembles a gracious outdoor eatery, like those in Andalucía, Spain.© Columbia Restaurant

Its best-selling Original Cuban Sandwich, known as The Mixto, was first concocted in the 1890s for the influx of cigar factory employees who lived and worked in the burgeoning area. As those immigrants from many countries built futures here, the sandwich, like Tampa itself, enlarged, incorporating layers of flavors. Cubans contributed marinated roast pork. Spanish added fine ham. Sicilians supplied Genoa salami. And Germans provided Swiss cheese, mustard and pickles. Daily baked Cuban bread from the 104-year-old La Segunda Central Bakery continues to wrap together this medley of meats, brushed with butter and pressed to a toasty finish just as it was done in Columbia’s 1915 recipe. Corporate chef Geraldo “Jerry” Bayona directs a warmly dependable menu. Enjoy the Cuban black bean soup, empanadas de picadillo, stuffed piquillo peppers, shrimp and crabmeat alcachofas, red snapper Adelita, fideua de Mariscos, paella a la Valenciana, café con leche and flan. Jim Garris, Columbia Restaurant Group’s director of operations, supervises the 240-page wine list of 1,056 labels among a 50,000-plus bottle inventory. Columbia is said to have the world’s best collection of wines from Spain. Six nights every week, flamenco dancers perform. Olé!

Paintings, photos and mementos of family and friends integral to the restaurant and its community’s storied stature are on display throughout Columbia Restaurant.© Columbia Restaurant

Columbia Restaurant Group’s president Richard Gonzmart heads six additional Columbia restaurants in Florida, as well as seven other restaurant concepts, one of which is Ulele, where Native Floridian ingredients are applauded. It is located on Tampa’s recently completed Riverwalk, which has opened public access to beautified waterfront and connected pathways among museums, parks, restaurants and hotels.

Smiles across the miles: Riverwalk brings Tampa together.© Keir Magoulas

LET THEM EAT BREAD  Owned and operated by the More family for four generations, La Segunda Central Bakery in Ybor City has produced well-loved Cuban bread for more than a century. Sought-after by Tampa residents and supplied to scores of Florida restaurants, the bread is also shipped to customers across the USA and around the world.

Some of La Segunda’s employees have been with the company for decades.© La Segunda Bakery

Baked in earthen molds as they have been since La Segunda first fired-up its ovens, doughy loaves are each prepped with a single strip of palmetto frond on top, creasing a line down the middle. When the leaves curl and tinge brown, then the bread is completed.

Cuban bread: Warm, crusty and fresh from the oven.© Laura Manske

A second new café location with seating and a wider menu of sandwiches and sweets in South Tampa features a hearth oven and open-view finishing table where bakers and pastry chefs prepare many of La Segunda’s signature items — all handmade from scratch.

At The Restaurant, Oxford Exchange.© Laura Manske

ROOMS WITH VIEWS  In a brick building that tracks back 128 years, near the University of Tampa, the charming transformed space that is now Oxford Exchange exudes a gladdening ambience that feels a bit like a brainy British hub for best buds. Linger in the heady bookstore. Sip specialty coffee and loose-leaf tea. Nose around a design-forward store brimming with tableware, travel accessories, jewelry, candles, soaps and more. Then excite your appetite at The Restaurant, which sports an open kitchen, an eye-candy bold art-filled main room and a sunlit greenery conservatory with retractable glass roof. Chef Richard Anderson’s menus are accented with bright-idea ingredients that give pleasant oomph and ahhh to dishes, such as a tomato soup with Cambozola (a soft-ripened, creamy cow’s milk cheese) and cornbread croutons.

Get thee to this glorious gin joint.CW’s Gin Joint

THIRST QUENCHER  The tagline for CW’s Gin Joint is “where style and grace have an attitude” — a darling apt description of proprietor Carolyn Wilson’s vintage-retro, chandelier-glowing, classy-sexy Downtown oasis, where patrons are encouraged to dress to impress. Peruse the wide-ranging repertoire of spirits — from Armagnacs to whiskeys — and feast on nourishing nibbles (angeled eggs, oyster soup, braised mussels, trout roe on blinis, mac ‘n’ cheese and white chocolate mousse). The lights are low. The mood is high. And the live music hits all the right notes. Cheers!

For more Sunshine State info and ideas: Visit Tampa Bay and Visit Florida.

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Amcor develops PET jar for cold-fill dairy products –

The transparent 200ml PET jar consists of a wide-mouth opening and aluminum-PET-aluminum closure with a 65mm over cap in clear polypropylene (PP) was developed for Danone’s La Serenísima’s yogurt, sold in Argentina.

Market demand

Martin Darmandrail, new business development director, Amcor Argentina, said the yogurt market in Latin America continues to grow as companies develop products to appeal to health-conscious consumers.  

The company optimized the two-step reheat process to produce the wide-mouth jars using a Matrix blow-molding machine ­for high-volume yogurt containers.

In a market historically dominated by thermoformed PP and polystyrene containers, we’ve shaken things up with a yogurt package with the durability, freshness, performance, manufacturing, and sustainability benefits of PET,​” said Darmandrail.

The La Serenísima jar features engraving, a finely finished base, and a body-wrap label. To protect the contents, it has a 55mm finish with aluminum-PET-aluminum-foil barrier seal and an ultraviolet blocker.

In Argentina, Danone has launched La Serenísima Original-brand yogurt in six flavors (natural, natural sweetened, strawberry, blackberry, lemon and ginger, and sweet squash) and will extend commercialization of the product to the rest of Latin America.

Stork filling line

Danone has installed a Stork filling line and plans production rates of 40 to 50 million units per year.

Maximiliano Sassone, R&I director, Danone Argentina, said the design of La Serenísima Original, is inspired by the first yogurt made by La Serenísima 55 years ago, which revolutionized the category in 1963.<html><body>

We select the ingredients, including milk from Argentine family farms, and pay respect to every step of the original process, creating a 100% natural product without preservatives, so our consumers can connect to their memories of the original product,​” he said. 

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Rajasthan govt to felicitate those adopting stray cows – Economic Times

The Congress-led Rajasthan government has decided to honour those who adopt stray cows on Independence day and Republic day.

The Directorate of Gopalan has issued a letter to all district collectors asking them to motivate donors, NGOs, social workers and cow lovers to adopt stray cows and felicitate them on August 15 and January 26.

The Directorate of Gopalan of the state government works for cattle conservation, research and development.

“The idea behind the step is to conserve cows with cooperation from people. Those who adopt stray cows and undertake welfare activities will be felicitated by district collectors on the occasion of Independence day and Republic day,” Vishram Meena, director, Gopalan directorate, said.

“The directorate issued a letter to all district collectors on December 28 with details of the campaign for the conservation of stray cows. There are people who adopt stray animals in cow shelter homes. They celebrate their birthdays, wedding anniversaries and such occasions by spending time with their adopted cows. We have asked the collectors to push such initiatives,” he said.

Meena said the interested parties can give their proposal to the respective district collectors.

After verification of the claims, the collectors will felicitate such people with a certificate at the district level, he said.

The order also mentions that whoever wants to adopt cows can deposit the amount decided by the local cow shelter and can visit the cows anytime.

Those who want to keep the stray cows at their houses can also do so, it added.

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It's a 'sin' to seek votes in name of cows: Arvind Kejriwal – Economic Times

It is a “sin” to seek votes in the name of cows, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said on Sunday even as he accused the BJP-led Haryana government of not allocating sufficient funds for cattle fodder. The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief visited a cow shelter in Sonipat’s village Saidpur.

“It is wrong to seek votes and play politics in the name of cows which is currently happening in the country,” Kejriwal said, addressing a gathering in the village.

“I feel, maybe I am wrong, that it is a sin to seek votes in the name of cows,” he said.

He claimed the Delhi government was running the “country’s best” cow shelter in Bawana.

“Nobody knows that the country’s best cow shelter is being run by the Delhi government,” he said.

He accused the BJP-led Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) of not releasing funds for cow fodder.

“In Delhi, the MCD is supposed to contribute Rs 20 and the Delhi government is supposed to contribute Rs 5 for cow (fodder) per day. But Delhi government raised it to Rs 20 from Rs 5 so that Rs 40 could be contributed per cow per day,” Kejriwal said.

“Now, the Delhi government is giving Rs 20 per cow per day but the BJP-led MCD has not released funds for the last three years,” he claimed.

Kejriwal also accused Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar-led Haryana government of not paying enough for cow fodder.

“I have come to know that the Haryana government releases Rs 140 per cow per year. It works out to be around 40 paise for a cow per day,” he said.

“I want to say that if you seek votes in the name of cows, then you should also pay enough for their fodder,” he said.

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