PennAg Welcomes New Leadership; Evaluates Impacts of Climate Change

Despite the wintry conditions of spring’s second day, PennAg Industries Association hosted its 140th Annual Meeting on Wednesday, March 21, 2018 at the Spooky Nook Complex in Manheim, Pennsylvania. Themed Water: Evaluating Impacts to Successful Agribusiness, the event was held just prior to World Water Day. We thank those who supported PennAg by sponsoring, advertising, or attending the event.

During the Annual Business meeting, PennAg leadership changed hands as outgoing President Mr. Taylor Doebler, III (Local Seed Co.) handed over the presidential gavel to Mr. Scott Bailey (Wenger Feeds). We welcome Mr. Bailey as the new president of the PennAg Board of Directors and look forward to a year with new ideas and fresh perspective on the challenges and changes within the agriculture industry.

Dr. Mike Hoffmann, Executive Director of the Cornell Institute for Climate Smart Solutions, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences at Cornell University, served as keynote speaker for the event. Titled “Climate Change: What It Means for Agriculture and Food Security,” Dr. Hoffmann’s presentation derailed typical assumptions about climate change and focused on the impacts it poses for agriculture and food security, both locally and globally. (For those who registered to attend the Annual Meeting, a link to Dr. Hoffmann's presentation is available. Please contact Kelly Caldwell at for the link.)
PennAg Scholarships: Apply Today!

In 2017, ten students received scholarships from PennAg Industries Association, totaling $13,500. The PennAg Scholarship Fund, supported by members and friends of the association, is funded primarily through the annual Divots for Degrees Golf Outing. The 2017 outing was held at Four Seasons Golf Club in Landisville. Congratulations to the 2017 PennAg Scholarship recipients!

Since its inception in 1991, the PennAg Scholarship Fund has awarded more than $313,500 in scholarships to children of our industry’s employees. NEW FOR 2018: To be eligible for a scholarship, applicants must be enrolled in a post-secondary educational institution, trade, or technical schooling program (2 year minimum) with a focus on agriculture, and work for a PennAg member or be a child of a PennAg member.

Applications for the 2018 program are available by clicking here. A committee of PennAg Board Members judge eligible applications for academics, activities, essay and interest in pursuing a career in agriculture.

CERCLA Reporting Updates

EPA Steps Back from Reporting Deadline: The EPA has made the following announcement via their CERCLA website:

"Farms with continuous releases do not have to submit their initial continuous release notification until the DC Circuit Court of Appeals issues its order, or mandate, enforcing the Court's opinion of April 11, 2017. No reporting is necessary until the mandate is issued. EPA will update this website once the mandate is issued and as new information becomes available.

To expedite your initial continuous release notification to the National Response Center, you may use the temporary email option. This option avoids potential large call volumes and delays. It allows one email notification for owners/operators with multiple farms."

November 15 Update: As follow-up to the alert included in Monday's Weekly Update on the issue of the November 15, 2017 CERCLA deadline to report continuous release of ammonia and/or hydrogen sulfide from animal wastes, the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association and the National Pork Producers Council have developed documents to help producers determine: 1) if they need to report; 2) where they can report; and 3) how they report in order to come into compliance from the recent court ruling. Farms exceeding the reportable release at or above a threshold of 100 pounds within a 24-hour period are required to follow a three-step reporting process, the first step being a phone call to the National Response Center (NRC) in order to submit initial continuous release notifications.

Producers are encouraged to utilize the poultry (Poultry Word format; Poultry PDF format) and swine (Pork Word format; Pork PDF format) templates provided as well as the worksheets included in the EPA guidance.

Please note, these templates are recommendation only and should not be considered legal documents. Producers are encouraged to consult their legal counsel on this individual business decision.

The EPA has posted on their website the intent to establish an email option for initial continuous release notifications due to potential for large call volumes to the National Response Center (NRC). The email system, which should be available by November 15, 2017, provides farm owners/operators with an expedited option to submit one email notification for owners/operators with multiple farms. An automated email response will provide producers with the necessary CR-ERNS number to be included on their written report.
Biosecurity Training

What is Biosecurity? In the context of animal agriculture, biosecurity is a series of management steps and practices implemented to prevent the introduction of infectious agents into a herd or flock, the spread of these agents through the herd, and out of the herd to other herds or flocks. A biosecurity plan may involve screening and testing incoming animals, some sort of quarantine or isolation procedures for newly purchased or returning animals, and some type of monitoring or evaluation system for early detection of disease. Once an infectious agent is in a herd or flock a similar but slightly different set of management practices are employed to prevent the infectious agent from leaving the farm in animals or products.

Why is Biosecurity Important?
Biosecurity is important for a number of reasons. First, it is an essential aspect of on-farm food safety programs. Keeping food products wholesome and of highest quality is important for the health and well-being of consumers. This helps to ensure consumer demand for product, and therefore ultimately the profitability of animal agriculture enterprises. Secondly, biosecurity should help keep animal healthy and more productive. This benefits the farming community through greater efficiency and profitability, as well as the animals through experiencing less disease. Finally, a vibrant agricultural community is a positive influence on the economy of our state and nation, and an important resource in maintaining a healthy environment.

PennAg and partners have developed a training module to provide an overview on farm etiquette basics, procedures necessary to protect farms when working on or near animal and food supplies, and ways to work with farmers to ensure project success.

Visit and click on the Biosecurity Training module -  available for the small fee of $15/person. Simply add it to your cart and the website works you through the rest of the process of creating an account. Those who successfully complete the module will receive a certificate of completion following the course.

Introducing PennAg Prime
PennAg Prime is an exclusive PennAg-endorsed insurance program for members. It delivers coverage packages specifically designed to address the needs of all aspects of agriculture and food processing. PennAg Prime is offered through the agencies of The Insurance Alliance of Central Pennsylvania, the premier group of independent agencies in Central Pennsylvania and the Lehigh Valley.
Interested in learning more about PennAg Prime? Please contact Nicole Cassel at or 717-651-5920 today!
Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza Information

Visit the PennAg Poultry Council page for Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza information and updates.

Save the Date / Register Today

Divots for Degrees - May 24
Join us on Thursday, May 24 for the Annual Divots for Degrees Golf Outing! The event will be held at Four Seasons Golf Club, Landisville, PA, beginning with registration at 10:30 a.m.
Divots for Degrees raises money for the PennAg Scholarship Fund. Since its inception in 1991, the PennAg Scholarship Fund has awarded more than $313,500 in scholarships to children of our industry’s employees. NEW FOR 2018: To be eligible for a scholarship, applicants must be enrolled in a post-secondary educational institution, trade, or technical schooling program (2 year minimum) with a focus on agriculture, AND work for a PennAg member or be a child of a PennAg member. 
Download a registration form today to provide a sponsorship or register your foursome!
We hope you will consider joining us to enjoy a great day on the course, visiting with friends and fellow members of the agriculture community, all while supporting the workforce of our industry!

April 27

Foamer Association Training Event
9 a.m.
(Southeast Agricultural Research and Extension Center, Manheim)

May 3

PennAg Board of Directors Meeting

10 a.m.

(AgChoice Farm Credit, Mechanicsburg)

May 16

Poultry Health Committee Meeting

9:30 a.m.

(Room 309, PA Dept. of Agriculture)

May 21-24

National Egg Quality School

(Indianapolis, IN)

May 24

PennAg Divots for Degrees Golf Outing

(Four Seasons Golf Course, Landisville)

May 25

PennAg Scholarship Application Deadline

May 28

Memorial Day

(PennAg Office Closed)

Additional Calendar Items

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