Tracy Turner

Technical Editor
Focus Areas: 
Chow Line, consumer news, food safety, nutrition.
  1. Photo: Thinkstock

    Ohio State Guide to Weed Identification Available for Growers

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – With spring planting soon to get underway, a new guide developed by an agronomist from the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University is available to help growers identify weeds in order to manage them before they take over. The 2015 Ohio State University Guide to Weed Identification is now available for free as an iBook and can be downloaded through Ohio State’s Digital Bookstore at digitalbookstore.osu.edu/book/ohio-state-university-guide-weed-identification. The guide is an excellent tool for growers presented in a digital format that offers pictures of various weed species at different stages of maturity and 360-degree movies for most species, said Bruce Ackley, an OSU Extension program specialist in weed...
  2. Photo: Thinkstock

    Water Quality Focus of Conservation Tillage Conference March 3-4

    ADA, Ohio – Improving Ohio’s water quality, particularly ways to keep phosphorus and nitrogen from impacting water resources, will be the focus of a day-long discussion by industry and university experts during the Conservation Tillage Conference, March 3-4. Starting with a session on the “Magnitude of the Phosphorus Problem for Lake Erie and Other Water Bodies,” the goal of the March 4 discussions is to gather some of the best scientists, researchers and engineers who have experience with the issue to come up with concrete solutions to keep more nutrients on the land and out of Ohio waters, said Randall Reeder, a retired Ohio State University Extension agricultural engineer and a conference organizer. “The goal is to come up with a consensus on what are...
  3. Photo: Thinkstock

    New Research Finds Some U.S. Soybean Yield Losses Caused by Weather Variations

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Researchers have determined that precipitation and temperature variations over the past 20 years have suppressed the U.S. average soybean yield gain — how much it improves every year — by around 30 percent, contributing to an industry loss of $11 billion nationwide. In Ohio alone, that soybean yield suppression is estimated to have cost some $2.9 billion during the past 20 years, according to a new study co-authored by a field crops expert in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University. Global annual temperatures have increased by 0.4 C (0.72 F) since 1980, with several regions exhibiting even greater increases, said Laura Lindsey, a soybean and small grains specialist with Ohio State University...
  4. Beekeeping is one of several topics to be discussed during March 28 Small Farms Conference. (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Conference Offers Small Farmers Options to Diversify, Grow Operations

    WOOSTER, Ohio – Landowners new to agriculture or small farmers wanting to diversify their farm operations who aren’t sure where they can potentially find farm funding can learn more about the U. S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency farm loan programs during a Small Farm Conference March 28 offered by Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. In addition to offering a session on the FSA farm loan program, the “Living Your Small Farm Dream” conference and trade show will offer landowners and producers tips, techniques and methods to help make their small farm operations more successful, profitable and sustainable, said Tony Nye, an Ohio State University Extension educator and conference organizer....
  5. Pastures and fences are some of the topics to be discussed during the Small Farms Conference March 13-14. (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Small Farm Conference March 13-14 Offers Expansion Options for Farmers

    WILMINGTON, Ohio – While the number of farms with less than 50 acres of land has declined slightly in recent years according to 2012 Agriculture Census data, small farm operators with specialized farms, particularly organic farms, have experienced substantial growth in recent years, the same data shows. That’s not surprising to Tony Nye, an Ohio State University Extension educator who coordinates OSU Extension’s Small Farm Program. Nye said he continues to see “a huge interest” in small farm production, particularly among farmers who are new to agriculture. “Whether they are small farmers wanting to make their farms work better or landowners who are new to agriculture and are looking for ways to utilize acreage,” Nye said, “there is a...
  6. Lake Erie (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Big Data, Water Quality Focus of Conservation Tillage Conference March 3-4

    ADA, Ohio – As more farmers gain access to and use big data to increase yield production, questions remain about how to keep that data from potentially hurting their farm profits later. Finding ways to make sure data gleaned from precision agriculture -- which is a farming management concept that uses technology such as satellites and GPS tracking systems to help farmers increase yields -- doesn’t fall into the wrong hands is just one of the topics to be discussed during the Conservation Tillage Conference, March 3-4. The annual conference, offered by Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences, will feature workshops and discussion on numerous farming issues, said Randall Reeder, a retired Ohio State University Extension...
  7. Photo: Thinkstock

    New Vineyard Survey Seeks Information on Costs to Hire Workers

    JEFFERSON, Ohio – Whether it be clearing brush from the vineyard, installing wire or work as specialized as laying tile drainage, viticulturists and other experts from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences want to gauge how much Ohio grape growers pay farm workers and machinery operators to work in their vineyards as part of the college’s inaugural Ohio Vineyard Custom Rate Survey. The survey is being conducted by Ohio State University Extension educators as a means of determining the cost of work completed on a vineyard by others, which is often referred to as custom work, said David Marrison, an OSU Extension educator. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. The survey is targeted at both those who hired custom...
  8. Frozen vineyard. (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Workshop to Offer Wine Grape Growers Insight on Managing Vines after Winter Damage

    GENEVA-ON-THE-LAKE, Ohio – Wine grape growers can learn how to manage grape vines after winter injury during a day-long workshop March 10 sponsored by Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Many growers across Ohio are still recovering from the prolonged and extremely frigid temperatures experienced in the region last winter, which destroyed a majority of popular wine grape crops grown in the Buckeye state, said David Marrison, an Ohio State University Extension educator.  The Ohio Winter Grape School can provide growers with information on lessons learned from the 2014 polar vortex as well as how to manage crown gall in grapes, which always increases after vines get stressed such as during the polar vortex last year, he said...
  9. Farmland Value Expected to Take Direction from Crop Margins and Interest Rates in 2015

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – While cropland values in Ohio increased in each of the past three years,  several factors, including continued low interest rates, low debt-to-asset ratios and lower profit margins, are likely going to make for a relatively flat land market in 2015, an economist from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences said. Ohio cropland value rose 8.9 percent in 2014, with bare cropland averaging $5,650 an acre, said Barry Ward, production business management leader for Ohio State University Extension. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. Ward, citing statistics from the Ohio Field Office of the National Agricultural Statistics Service, said he expects values to be flat to modestly lower this year...
  10. Photo: Thinkstock

    Ohio State Workshop Addresses Farmland Leasing Issues

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – As farmers and landowners consider options to include in new or renewed land leases, understanding how to use data in negotiations and how to apply legal information to leasing practices could help make the process easier for both sides, experts say. To help provide guidance and understanding of the financial and legal issues surrounding farmland leasing, Ohio State University Extension’s Agricultural and Resource Law program and Production Business Management program will discuss the topic during a workshop to be held in four sites around the state, said Peggy Hall, Ohio State University Extension’s agricultural and resource law field specialist. The workshop, which will focus on factors affecting leasing options, is intended both for landowners and...
  11. Photo: Thinkstock

    OSU Extension Offers Beef Cattle School Jan. 27, Feb. 10 and 24

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Beef cattle producers who want boost their profit potential and become more competitive in the cattle industry can learn how by attending the 2015 Ohio Beef Cattle School series Jan. 27, Feb. 10 and 24, taught by experts from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. The three-session program covers a broad range of topics including management decisions that a producer can make to take full advantage of the beef economic outlook in the present and for years to come, said John Grimes, beef coordinator for Ohio State University Extension and a member of the OSU Extension Beef Team. The overall goal of the program, he said, is to help producers expand their beef operations and take advantage of the increasing consumer...
  12. View of a farm taken from an Unmanned Aerial Vehicle. (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Precision Agriculture Webinar offered Jan. 20

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – The more data farmers and producers can access regarding their fields, the better they can make decisions regarding how to manage their farm operations, experts say. But boiling down information from field monitored data, satellite data and remote sensing data captured using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles can sometimes be challenging, said Greg LaBarge, an Ohio State University Extension field specialist and one of the leaders of Ohio State University’s Agronomic Crops Team. To help farmers with that task, a webinar on precision agriculture will be offered live by agronomic experts with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences Jan. 20 at 10 a.m. The free event will feature “Using Precision Agriculture to Make...
  13. Photo: Thinkstock

    Statewide Farm to School Conference March 5 Offers Opportunities to Grow Successful Programs

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Producers looking for ways to sell fresh, local foods to schools — and school districts looking to start or expand a Farm to School program — can come together during a statewide conference in March that’s designed to help expand opportunities between the groups. Ohio State University Extension will host the Farm to School conference March 5 as part of an effort to continue to expand the successful program, which works to increase students’ access to healthy foods, increase their knowledge about food, health, nutrition and agriculture, as well as create economic opportunities for growers, said Carol Smathers, an OSU Extension field specialist and the program’s director. The event is from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Ohio State University...
  14. Hops plants (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Getting Started in Hops Production Workshop is Feb. 4

    WOOSTER, Ohio – With Ohio-grown hops in high demand from Ohio microbrewers, growers who want to learn how to get started in hops production can learn from the experts during a preconference workshop on Feb. 4 designed to offer tips on how to get in on the next big thing in Ohio agriculture. As more Ohio-based beverage producers seek to procure hops grown in the Buckeye state, interest in growing these crops continues to increase statewide among both established and potential hops growers, experts say, especially since the income potential for hops growers is significant thanks to increased industry demand. To help new growers learn how to get started growing hops in Ohio, the “Getting Started in Hops Production” workshop will be held Feb. 4 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m. in...
  15. Hops plants (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Getting Started in Hops Production Workshop is Feb. 4

      WOOSTER, Ohio – With Ohio-grown hops in high demand from Ohio microbrewers, growers who want to learn how to get started in hops production can learn from the experts during a preconference workshop on Feb. 4 designed to offer tips on how to get in on the next big thing in Ohio agriculture. As more Ohio-based beverage producers seek to procure hops grown in the Buckeye state, interest in growing these crops continues to increase statewide among both established and potential hops growers, experts say, especially since the income potential for hops growers is significant thanks to increased industry demand. To help new growers learn how to get started growing hops in Ohio, the “Getting Started in Hops Production” workshop will be held Feb. 4 from 6 p.m. to 9 p.m...
  16. Photo: Thinkstock

    Sustainable Farming Conference to Feature 19 Ohio State Experts, Feb. 13-15

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – From berry pests and cover crop concepts to soil biology and building regional food systems, researchers and industry experts from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) will present the latest information on some of the key issues in organic and sustainable agriculture next month during Ohio’s largest sustainable food and farm conference. The Ohio Ecological Food and Farm Association’s (OEFFA) 36th annual conference, “Sustainable Agriculture: Renewing Ohio’s Heart and Soil,” is Feb. 13-15 in Granville, Ohio. With numerous workshops and a full-day pre-conference event featuring Ohio State and industry scientists, specialists and students, participants will get an updated look at...
  17. Photo: Thinkstock

    OSU Expert: Best Practices Can Help Livestock Producers Benefit More from High Prices

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – As 2015 begins, livestock producers should assess their beef production enterprises for areas that may need improvement to help ensure they’re able to benefit from the year’s high cattle prices for as long as possible, says a beef cattle expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Lower corn prices, improved pasture conditions, smaller beef cow herds and increased domestic demand combined to help beef cattle producers experience record prices for beef this year, said John Grimes, beef coordinator for Ohio State University Extension. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. “But, no one knows how long these historically high prices will last,” Grimes said. “So producers...
  18. Photo: Thinkstock

    Ohio State Promotes Youth Safety on Farms and Ranches

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Agricultural safety professionals with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences are working with agricultural industry professionals nationwide to enhance awareness of farm safety for youth. Members of the college’s Agricultural Safety Office organized the National Youth Farm and Ranch Safety Symposium, held Oct. 27-28 in Louisville, Ky. The symposium brought national agricultural and youth organizations together to talk about future directions for youth employment in agriculture, said Dee Jepsen, state safety leader for Ohio State University Extension. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. The symposium was a direct action from the U.S. Department of Labor’s efforts in 2011 to propose changes...
  19. Photo: Thinkstock

    Testing Livestock Forage and Feed Samples Colder Weather Animal Care

    WOOSTER, Ohio – Colder weather requires means livestock need more energy to be able to withstand harsh winter conditions outdoors, according to a forages expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.  And the best way forage producers can ensure they provide their animals adequate nutrients is to collect samples of forage and send it to a lab for testing, said Rory Lewandowski, an Ohio State University Extension agriculture and natural resources educator. OSU Extension is the outreach arm for the college. Cold temperatures, low wind chills, cold rain and muddy conditions can significantly increase the energy required by livestock metabolism to provide enough heat for the animal to maintain its body temperature,...
  20. Grain bins. (Photo: Thinkstock)

    Lower Crop Prices Make Grain Marketing More Important

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Growers wanting to brush up on their grain marketing skills or those who want to learn how to improve their farm operation’s profitability can participate in a series of online grain marketing courses taught by experts from Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Grain Marketing in Challenging Times, to be offered Feb. 3, Feb. 10, Feb. 17, Feb. 24 and March 3, will offer farmers and growers proven tips and techniques to improve marketing skills, said Chris Bruynis, an Ohio State University Extension educator. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. With lower crop prices forecast for next year, grain marketing will be one of the more critical decisions farm managers will have to make this year, said...
  21. Hops cones for beer production. (Photo:Thinkstock)

    Ohio Hops Conference is Feb. 5-6, 2015

    WOOSTER, Ohio – It’s the next big thing in Ohio agriculture as more beverage producers seek Ohio-grown hops for their craft brews. Interest in growing hops in Ohio continues to increase among both established and potential hops growers as well as brewery industry insiders, experts say, and the income potential for hops growers is significant. To help growers and anyone interested in hops learn more about Ohio hops and the Ohio craft brewing industry, a conference and trade show on how to get into the hops business will be held Feb. 5-6, 2015 in the Fisher Auditorium and Shisler Conference Area, 1680 Madison Ave., Wooster, Ohio, on the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) campus. The Hops Conference and Trade Show will feature detailed information on the...
  22. (Photo: Thinkstock)

    12 Days of Experts: Farmers, Don’t Wait for New Year’s to Resolve Farm Bill Questions

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Top New Year’s resolutions typically include pledges to lose weight, exercise more, get organized or quit smoking. But one New Year’s resolution farmers and farm land owners may want to include on their list is to make sure they understand all of the factors they should consider before making decisions about crop programs offered as part of the 2014 farm bill, according to a farm policy expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. That’s especially true this year, because farm bill commodity programs have the potential to make significant payments for the first time in several years due to low prices and revenue for corn, soybeans and wheat, says Carl Zulauf, an agricultural economics...
  23. Livestock producers need to be thinking now about how they’ll keep their animals warm when the temperatures drop. (Photo: Thinkstock)

    12 Days of Experts: Livestock May Need Extra Feed in Colder Weather to Keep Warm

    WOOSTER, Ohio – While the weather outside isn’t frightful – yet – livestock producers still need to be thinking now about how they’ll keep their animals warm when the temperatures drop, wind chills rise and it starts to snow, snow, snow. Colder winter weather means producers need to be aware of increased livestock energy requirements to ensure their animals are able to withstand harsh conditions outdoors, said Rory Lewandowski, an Ohio State University Extension agriculture and natural resources educator. OSU Extension is the outreach arm for Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences.  Cold temperatures, low wind chills and muddy conditions can significantly increase the energy required by livestock...
  24. Cereal rye cover crop (Photo: OSU Extension)

    Cover Crops Can Improve Soil Health, Water Quality and Yields

    OTTAWA, Ohio – Farmers who add cover crops to their fields not only can help improve Ohio’s water quality, they can also cut input costs and improve their soil’s health. Growers who plant cover crops — including oilseed radish, cereal rye, Austrian winter pea and crimson clover — can also expect to reduce soil erosion and cut down on nutrient losses, according to Jim Hoorman, a soil expert with Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Hoorman, an Ohio State University Extension educator and an assistant professor studying cover crops and water quality issues, will offer a workshop for both growers who want get started planting cover crops and those who want to expand their knowledge on the benefits of cover...
  25. Agriculture economists to offer outlook on what to expect in the 2015 grain market.(Photo:Thinkstock)

    Ohio State to Host Grain Symposium Dec. 18

    COLUMBUS, Ohio – Farmers wondering what questions they should consider before making decisions on the new Farm Bill crop programs, or those wanting to get an idea about what to expect in the 2015 grain market, can find out answers to those issues and more during a Dec. 18 grain symposium hosted by Ohio State University’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. The symposium will bring together farmers, researchers and industry experts who will offer insight into key agricultural issues, including Matt Roberts, an Ohio State University Extension economist who is helping to organize the event. Roberts will also present an update on the grain market for the coming year. OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the college. The event is from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Dec....

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