Florida Tomato Grower Recognized for Sustainable Tomato Farming

One Florida tomato grower was awarded the coveted 4R Advocate Award for sustainable tomato farming.

We’re proud to toot the Florida ag industry’s horn with the announcement that tomato grower Gary Reeder, and his colleagues at the tomato operation West Coast Tomato, were awarded the 4R Advocate Award by The Fertilizer Institute. As only the second Florida recipient of the award in its history, Reeder was recognized for his sustainable tomato farming practices concerning fertilizer use. Find out what the 4R Advocate Award is all about, and what about Reeder’s sustainable tomato production earned him the prestigious award.Read More

Mr. Don Takes a Look at the Family Farming Tradition

Don Harden looks at the statistics generated by AgAmerica’s survey on the multigenerational family farming tradition.

In my April column in Central Florida Ag News, I wrote about the importance of the family farming tradition in America. The 2012 Census of Agriculture counted 2.1 million farms in the U.S, with 97 percent being considered family-owned operations. The lion’s share of our food and fiber comes from family farming operations, so it’s no wonder that the image of the multigenerational farming businesses is one that many family farmers hold in high esteem.

In the ag industry, the number of farming generations we count in our families is a source of great pride, and the thought of our children and grandchildren inheriting the farm and filling our boots is a sustaining one. While there are many statistics on family agriculture, there are few on the details of the family farming tradition. In 2015, AgAmerica conducted a survey of hundreds of growers, and compiled the results in the whitepaper Families and Their Farms: Planning for the Future. Explore our findings on the family farming tradition below. Read More

Don Harden on University-Level Ag Education Programs

AgAmerica’s Don Harden discusses university-level ag education programs in Florida.

In my March column in Central Florida Ag News, I wrote about the great ag education programs in Florida at the college and university level, and the fact that many of them offer FFA and 4-H programs. See examples and the benefits of these programs below.Read More

Jeb Bush Keynote Speaker at Lay of the Land Conference

Governor Jeb Bush is the keynote speaker at Saunders Real Estate’s annual Lay of the Land Conference this March.

This March 17th will see the Lay of Land Conference, hosted by Saunders Real Estate. Held at the Omni Orlando Resort at Championsgate, Florida, the event is Saunders’ annual conference for Florida landowners. AgAmerica Lending is the platinum sponsor of the event and former Governor Jeb Bush is the keynote speaker. Explore the conference and its offerings below.Read More

AgAmerica Eats Strawberry Recipes: Cooking with Strawberries

Try these strawberry recipes with all of the fresh strawberries currently being harvested in Florida.

In Florida agriculture, January through March is prime strawberry time. Fields of the juicy sweet berries have ripened to perfection, and the Florida Strawberry Festival is held March 2nd to the 12th in celebration of these sweet red berries. Since strawberries are the nation’s favorite berry too, everyone benefits from fresh Florida strawberries gracing the grocery store shelves. If you’re looking for a few fresh strawberry recipes beyond the tried-and-true strawberry shortcake, look no further!Read More

What’s the Buzz: the Role of Bees in Agriculture

The lessons learned were many when the AgAmerica team visited Kirkland Farms in early February to learn about bees in agriculture.

The importance of bees in agriculture is well-known, but the extent of the significance isn’t something that everyone understands completely. For those who rely on bees for the pollination of agricultural crops, like blueberry farms and others, bees are as necessary to the operation’s success as sunlight and water. The AgAmerica team recently visited Kirkland Farms, a farm with a blueberry operation located in Lakeland, Florida, to explore the role of bees in agriculture. Find out what all the buzz is about below.Read More

A Look at Southeast Floriculture for Valentine’s Day

Explore Southeast floriculture prior to one of its biggest days of the year: Valentine’s Day.

If you’re in the floriculture industry, February is likely a busy time. Valentine’s Day is one of the busiest times for cut-flower growers, and Southeast floriculture accounts for the lion’s share of floriculture crops by wholesale values, according to USDA NASS-compiled statistics. Explore the statistics about roses, carnations and other cut flowers— and Southeast floriculture in general— below.Read More

Lakeland BBQ Pigfest: Honoring Southern BBQ Traditions

AgAmerica Team Members Take Part in Lakeland BBQ Fun, Friendly Competition, and Entertainment.

Southern BBQ is a way of life, and that tradition is carried on with the Lakeland BBQ Pigfest event. Held in late January, the event is meant to be a relaxing and fun event, raise money for charitable organizations, bring world-class BBQ to the area and celebrate Lakeland BBQ. Read how this BBQ competition in AgAmerica’s backyard offers the best of Southern traditions.Read More

AgAmerica Recipes: Warming Up With Winter Recipes

Try some of these ideas for delicious winter recipes with crops that are in season in the Southeast.

The cooler weather that accompanies the winter months can cause a chill no matter where you live, making it the perfect time for winter recipes like soups and stews. Winter recipes offer nutritious vegetables, grains, and proteins, making them a great choice to stay in line with any New Year’s resolutions about eating healthier. If you’re lucky enough to live in The Sunshine State—Florida—you’re less likely to have cause to need the warming qualities of winter soups, stews, and hot dishes. Try the below salad instead!Read More

Berry Crop Updates: Strawberry and Blueberry Forecasts

The latest berry crop updates indicate opportunities and challenges for the country’s two favorite berries.

The respective seasons for the country’s two favorite berries—strawberries and blueberries—are quickly approaching. Both berries see their earliest harvests in Florida, with other southeast states like Georgia following closely. Keep reading for berry crop updates that indicate what’s in store for the growers of these two commodities.Read More