Four separate AgTours will begin at 8:00 a.m. on Monday, April 8:
Dairy Science Tour
Stop #1. Hatfield Dairy - The Hatfield dairy currently operates on 550 acres and milking 220 cows. The milking facility was recently added in November of 2009 containing 4 Lely robotic milkers, which has a maximum milking capacity of 230 milking cows. The farm is strictly family operated, with hired labor only for custom hire drag lining of manure and forage processing. This farm will give you the opportunity to see robotic milkers in use, a new but rapidly growing concept among dairy farms.
Stop #2. Fessenden Dairy
- Fessenden is a family owned and operated Holstein dairy farm that began in 1863. The dairy has since expanded to a 550-cow herd and now includes a compost business, Tender Loving Compost
. Compost is delivered across the Finger Lakes region, and shipped throughout the United States. The farm also produces enough corn and alfalfa locally to feed the growing herd.
Stop #3: Empire Livestock Auction
- The Dryden livestock auction sells hogs, sheep, lambs, goats, calves, and both beef and dairy cows. We will be touring the facilities and watching at least part of the auction process. We will hopefully have a beef and veal specialist discuss the ethics of the process and the welfare of the animals during either a follow-up lunch or afternoon session. We will eat lunch at this stop.
Stop #4: Northland Sheep Dairy
- Northland Sheep Dairy is a small, grass-based farm that milks a flock of crossbred sheep. The dairy produces handmade sheep cheese on the farm, using only their own 100% grass-fed sheep milk. The farm also produced mutton, lamb, wool products and tanned sheepskins. The majority of the farm work is done using draft horse and mule power, as the farm is committed to sustainable farming and management techniques.
Stop #1: New York State Agricultural Experiment Station
- For more than 125 years, Cornell’s New York State Agricultural Experiment Station (NYSAES) has developed cutting-edge technologies essential to feeding the world and strengthening New York economies. From developing safe and nutritious foods to pioneering means to preserve the environment, NYSAES has been addressing the concerns and serving millions of New York consumers, agricultural producers, food businesses and farm families throughout the state. Moving into the 21st century, New York must capitalize on new food and agricultural opportunities and NYSAES is uniquely positioned to translate state-of-the art research into industry innovation and economic growth.
Stop #2. The Technology Farm
- The mission of the The Technology Farm is to provide a campus for research and development in the areas of food and agriculture. Sitting in the middle of a 72 acre apple orchard, The Park opened in 2005 with one lab, 4 offices, an administration suite and 3 tenants. In the summer of 2006 they began developing the inside of the building adding to the existing facilities, 13 more offices , another lab and 4 production facilities. Current tenants include Cheribundi
, a company that produces a the world’s most powerful tart cherry juice shown to reduce inflammations and strength loss, as well as Stony Brook WholeHearted Foods
which produces our region’s first culinary oil made from varietal squash seeds. We will eat lunch at this stop.
Stop #3. Bejo Seeds
- Bejo is a vegetable seed company that has locations around the world. In Geneva, Bejo produces 20 acres of research trials, demonstration trials, and special marketing and product development projects. The farm serves as a base for sales and product development managers in the Northeast and Southeast US, as well as Canada.
Local/Organic Agriculture Tour
Stop #1. Lakeview Organic Grain
- Lakeview is a family owned and operated organic farm of approximately 1400 acres of corn, soybeans, small grains (wheat, spelt, barley, oats, triticale), field peas, winter peas, dark red kidney beans, and edamame soybeans. The farm carries a full line of certified organic feed grains, bagged feed, organic crop seeds and approved supplements. Lakeview is also one of the main corn suppliers for the Piggery Restaurant and ships organic grain across all of New York and parts of northern Pennsylvania.
Stop #2. Lively Run Goat Dairy
- Lively Run is a small family owned and operated goat dairy that produces various cheese products sold throughout the Ithaca area, including at the Piggery Restaurant. The farm also processes milk from other local goat and cow dairies. The cheeses contain no preservatives, food colors or artificial additives. We will eat lunch on this bus between stops.
Stop #3. The Piggery
- The Piggery is a small, family owned butcher shop and eatery in downtown Ithaca. They feature pasture-raised heritage breed pork from their own farm, located in Trumansburg, which we will be touring. The restaurant primarily serves meat and cheese products from local, sustainable farms.
Stop #4. Ithaca Beer Co.
- Ithaca Beer Company is a brewery started and operated by a single man, Dan Mitchell, which opened in December of 1998. The company produces, packages and sells all of its products locally but is continually expanding to provide the Eastern seaboard with various beers and renowned Root and Ginger Beer. Ithaca Beer Co. has been voted the Best Craft Brewery in NY State several years in a row. We will be touring the facilities where the beer is brewed, fermented, bottled and packaged.
Environmental Science Tour
Stop #1: Finger Lakes Fresh
- Finger Lakes Fresh produces vegetables in a local, hydroponics greenhouse. It is an environmentally friendly and sustainable alternative to large-scale vegetable products shipped from distant locations. Cornell University first developed the hydroponics greenhouse as a research project on year round agriculture in New York State. Finger Lakes Fresh is now owned and operated by Challenge Industries, an organization whose mission is to gainfully employ disabled individuals.
Stop #2. Cortland Produce
- Cortland Produce has been in the business for over 80 years. With over 4,200 products available, they source many of Ithaca restaurants and businesses, including Alpha Zeta! They focus on providing locally grown foods as much as possible to their customers. This tour will include visiting their brand new warehouse.
Stop #3. DEC Pheasant Propagation Facility
- The DEC established a propagation program for ring-necked pheasants to help meet the demand for pheasant hunting opportunities. With natural populations at an all-time low, this program seeks to release captive bred and raised birds into public hunting lands to prevent the extirpation of the pheasant from New York territories. A cooperative day-old chick program also provides youth with the opportunity to learn the husbandry and natural history of this species, with the goal of increasing awareness and improving wildlife habitat.
Stop #4. The Arnot Forest
- The Arnot Forest is unique within the CALS and the state as a facility that integrates virtually all programs across teaching, research, and extension functions among student, educator, landowner, and manager audiences. Program participants are better able to make informed decisions about the management, conservation and economic impacts of how they utilize natural resources. Student- and faculty-based research programs are integrated with teaching and extension in support of college and department missions. It is through this integration that the Arnot Forest supports the Department of Natural Resources’ mission to create knowledge and facilitate learning.
The group will be stopping here for lunch and will have a presentation from the Cornell Maple Program
about maple syrup production. We will eat lunch when we first arrive at this stop.
Tuesday, April 9 Morning Campus Tours:
Tour #1. Cornell Orchards
- Part of the Department of Horticulture, the orchards on Cornell’s campus includes of 37 acres of apples, grapes, berries and plums. The oldest trees in the orchard are over 90 years old. The orchard provides a convenient location for teaching and research, and also has a season store where their fruit and other local products can be purchased. Learn more
about Cornell Orchards. This tour will also visit the Cornell Farm Services Compost Facility
. Cornell is unique in that it has its own on-campus composting facility. Waste from dining halls, restaurants, and other places on campus are taken to this facility, composted and then returned to Cornell farms and research plots for fertilization. Over 6 tons of compostable foods and materials are brought to the site each week!
Tour #2. Cornell Dairy Processing Facilities
- While the brand new dairy processing plant will not be open by the conference, the dairy processing group will be giving a demonstration on ice cream making. This tour will also visit the Cornell School of Veterinary Medicine
, which is one of the best in the world, and this tour will give you a bit of exposure to their facilities. Dr. McDonough, a professor in the Vet School, will be giving a demonstration of a lamb necropsy in the school's state-of-the-art teaching theater. This workshop is not for the squeamish!
Tour #3. Lab of Ornithology
- The Cornell Lab of Ornithology is a world leader in the study, appreciation, and conservation of birds. Their hallmarks are scientific excellence and technological innovation to advance the understanding of nature and to engage people of all ages in learning about birds and protecting the planet. The lab engages people from all around the world to better the understanding of birds, as well as other animals, including whales. Did you know that some of the sound bytes for birds in movies come from Cornell's Lab of O?