Live­stock and agri­cul­ture sem­i­nar in­for­ma­tive for ru­ral farm­ers

The Packet (Clarenville) - - EDITORIAL - BY MARK SQUIBB THE PACKET

Cody Gough of Bon­av­ista says he has dreamed of sheep farm­ing since he was five or six years old.

Now, af­ter at­tend­ing a sem­i­nar on agri­cul­ture and live­stock, hosted by the pro­vin­cial govern­ment, Gough feels closer to that dream than ever.

“I got a few con­tacts from go­ing there who I can talk to about get­ting through the red tape and get­ting ap­proved,” Gough ex­plained.

Al­most a dozen govern­ment em­ploy­ees gave pre­sen­ta­tions at the sem­i­nar, which was at­tended by about 30 peo­ple. Top­ics cov­ered in­cluded busi­ness de­vel­op­ment, land ac­qui­si­tion, pas­ture man­age­ment, multi-species graz­ing, food safety, mar­ket­ing strate­gies, and meat reg­u­la­tions and li­cens­ing.

“The sem­i­nar showed from start to fin­ish the full process of how you would start up, where you would go, and what would you do … every­thing, right down to where you can get fund­ing. It was great for young peo­ple to see how they would start,” said Vir­ginia Trem­blett Gough, who at­tended with her son Cody and daughter Cas­sidy.

“There was some­thing for ev­ery­body,” said Vir­ginia. “My daughter is re­ally in­ter­ested in an­i­mal care— that seg­ment re­ally in­ter­ested her.”

Vir­ginia told the Packet she be­lieves there is not only a great in­ter­est in the Bon­av­ista area, but great po­ten­tial as well.

“Years ago, every­one was a farmer, they grew their own veg­eta­bles, they had their meat sup­ply for the win­ter … it would be nice to get back to farm­ing … we need to get back to the ba­sics.”

“We re­ally ap­pre­ci­ate that they put this off in this area and we look for­ward to more sem­i­nars like this to come.”

As for young, up-and-com­ers like Cody, there was plenty of use­ful in­for­ma­tion pre­sented.

“I used to think grass was grass,” said Cody.

“You cut it, they eat it. Now I know what types are bet­ter, when to cut it, and when to stop cut­ting it.”

Farm­ers and pro­duc­ers in New­found­land and Labrador can ap­ply for fund­ing un­der the Pro­vin­cial Agri­foods As­sis­tance Pro­gram. The ap­pli­ca­tion dead­line is May 12.

As for Cody Gough, he plans on meet­ing with one of the pre­sen­ters about po­ten­tial fund­ing op­por­tu­ni­ties.

“And we’ll go from there,” said Cody.

SUB­MIT­TED PHOTO

Erica Cole lead­ing a presentation at a re­cent agri­cul­ture sem­i­nar.

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