The UD Webb Farm is located near main campus in Newark where it houses farm animals. This farm allows for not only students, but the general public to come learn about agriculture “through hands on experiences”. On this farm, research is conducted on sustainable ag and how to face current issues. Furthermore, this location is home to the backgrounds of UDairy where they get their actual dairy. The trip allowed for students to learn about the farm, what is done there, its purpose, and to allow for students to get a hands on experience. I find it interesting the location of this farm as it is in the city of Newark which does not have many farms. Lastly, this farm allows for a different kind of learning opportunity that gives students at the University an advantage when applying for jobs later on and assisting on this farm could even lead to a job on its own.
Dan Severson came to discuss livestock with our class along with the Ag industry both in Delaware and domestically overtime. I thought it was very interesting when he brought up points about the World Wars and their impacts on farms in the US along the working population. I personally though the ag industry in Delaware was bigger. I know we are a small state, however, I was still surprised by some numbers as I would have imagined them higher such as our product revenue. I found it interesting that we produce so many Lima beans, I would never have guessed that. I also never thought about how expensive it was to feed farm animals, I would have thought that other expenses would have topped feed. I enjoyed his presentation to the class and was able to take a lot away from it.
Tracy and Valan spoke to our class about Delaware horticulture which embodies a lot more than most would think. I found this to be very interesting because a lot of what they spoke on are things I encountered daily and were constantly surrounded by during my internship. IPM is crucial in our state and many others which stands for integrated pest management. I enjoyed their presentation especially due to Tracys high energy and excitement to present this topic. Furthermore, I enjoyed learning a little bit more about both of their back stories and how they ended up in their current job roles.
I found this class guest lecture to be very intriguing as a lot of current events were discussed. In this session we were able to learn about the agricultural industry at a deeper level along with understand all that goes into these companies and their products. I never know how much money and time it took for these companies to produce ag products, usually it is about 10-15 years and millions of dollars. His discussion with our class really emphasized that the ag industry is heading in the right direction and that the advancements being made are crucial to feeding our population and keeping a promise to sustainable ag
On Saturday October 12th our class had the chance to visit Hoobers in Middletown, DE. This is a family owned tractor supply company that has a few locations located around the Delmarva region. While at their largest location our class was able to take a small glimpse into their operation where they sell tractors, repair tractors, and sell parts. Furthermore, they sell lawn mowers and other equipment that can be used at consumers homes, businesses, and farms. It was interesting to see the available technology in tractors along with the wide range of equipment. Growing up with a family farm Hoobers was somewhere we took our Case tractors and got parts from so it was interesting to see a place I’ve grown up with incorporated into my college class. Lastly, I find it unique that Hoobers is specific on Case tractors over John Deere and the amount of books and blue prints in the maintenance section for older tractors.
Our class had guest speaker James Adkins speak to us about irrigation systems not only here in the United States, but around the world. I found it very interesting how he went back to how irrigation systems first started and the different types and ways that they are used around the globe. Furthermore, Adkins discussed water use and the different water levels in the ground. This was very intriguing in regards to Delaware agriculture. On my home farm we do not have to use irrigation due to our soil type, whereas, other areas may not have as good of soil. Additionally, I was not aware on the amount of areas that rely solely on ground water which over time may run out. I was not aware that corn requires 22 inches per year of water in order to grow properly, it was something that had never crossed my mind even on our home farm where we grow corn.
In this video he discusses important issues facing nations and the world both in governments and in the private sector. His position is that he feels like we need to discuss more research and development. GMO’s and organic foods were talked about especially the health issues organic has caused resulting in deaths and outbreaks due to how difficult they are to manage when it comes to outbreaks and disease. “people have died from choosing organic, but no‐one has died from eating GM.” I think is a really important quote from the transcript. The evidence and data provided for GMO food against organic is overwhelming.
Our class has had the privilege of having Ed Kee speak to us again, this time about California and Iowa agriculture. Two states that have a big impact on the United States Agricultural Community. I never realized how big of an impact California had globally, if it was its own country it would have the 10th largest GDP in the World. I was fascinated by the way of life in California especially how much it cost farmers and the general public for water usage. I found it interesting that Iowa ranked number one in corn production, this is due to the fact that my family farm operation is focused on grain. I wouldn’t have ever of thought that 9/11 would impact agriculture especially in the area of energy. California is also able to grow a wide variety of different products due to its size and how it stretches so far up and down.
Our class was able to have the previous Secretary of Agriculture come speak to us last Monday and I found it very interesting that a lot of the information he shared were things discussed by Georgie and in my One Health class. I never knew the history of Delaware agriculture and the impact such a small state like ours could have on the U.S and Global economy. I thought it was cool to learn that the majority of farms within the U.S (98%) are family farms and that there has been a 170% increase in production with a 26% decrease in land. I found it very interesting just how relient other countries and markets are on the U.S and their corn production.
Our class had the privilege of Michele Walfred being a guest lecture. Her lecture focused on social media use in many different aspects. These included how social media can be beneficial for getting a job while also hurt somebodies chances at getting a job. Creating a theme among all social media platforms with a public account that uses your real name is an amazing way for employers to see who they’re hiring and gives an applicant an advantage. Posting photos that could possibly negatively harm your perception isn’t a good idea such as underage drinking or excessive parting. Furthermore, the use of LinkIn was talked about as it is a great way for networking. Throughout her presentation we were also able to hear some life advice that could be used in various different ways
Our class had the privilege of having guest speaker Georgie Cartanza talk to us about the poultry industry and extension. Her presentation included interesting facts about the poultry industry within the U.S, Globally, and even in the Delmarva area. I was surprised to learn how the industry has evolved over the years and just how crucial operations here are due to the fact that we are able to reach ⅓ of the U.S population within 8 hours. Furthermore, as time has gone on chicken houses and the way the poultry industry operates has changed tremendously. I think one of the most interesting facts was learning how big of a role DuPont Highway played and still plays in the way farming especially poultry farming was able to rapidly advance and take off. I think the guest lecture was very informative and I am glad I was able to participate and gain knowledge on a subject I had no previously knowledge on, I was never aware if the impact poultry had on agriculture as a whole and the state of Delaware.
Last weekend, September 7th we had the opportunity to go to a chicken farm in lower Delaware. While at this farm we were able to experience first hand the environment that chicken farmers work in and get a small peek into the industry. As we spent our Saturday morning and afternoon there, topics such as extension, the poultry industry as a whole, Delmarva poultry industry, politics, and much more was discussed. I particularly enjoyed the statistics that was shared involving jobs as 1 job in the poultry industry creates 7 jobs in the community in Sussex county. It was incredible to see the beginning process of where our food comes from, I could not get over how many chickens are grown on one farm here in Delaware. Furthermore, I found it to be very interesting that the farm is an organic chicken farm where a lot of the regulations put into place are from a consumer standpoint rather than scientific. The trip was very eye opening, especially to someone who has never been educated on the poultry industry. I feel like I better understand another area of agriculture and am more well rounded. I was unaware of how many different variables go into chicken farms and how critical electricity is and keeping the chickens alive.