What is going on with the seeds in the mail?

Recently, there have been reports of people receiving packages of seeds in the mail. What is weird is that they did not order the seeds and have no idea where they came from. There have been reports in multiple states of these mysterious seed packages. Some reports have said that the seeds are arriving unexpectedly […]

Two weeks remain to comment on Florida’s trade challenges

Guest Commentary By John Walt Boatright and Jaime JerrelsFlorida Farm BureauSpecial to the Lake Okeechobee News The Florida Farm Bureau has been working with an industry coalition to pursue a trade remedy for our ongoing seasonal/perishable challenges, which have plagued the state since the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) of the 1990s. In January […]

Few aquarium fish come from saltwater; with research, that’s changing

By Brad BuckUF/IFAS Tropical fish hobbyists are pretty serious about their pastime. So much so that it’s a $40 million-a-year industry in the United States. Most of the fish in home tanks come from freshwater. Only about 10% are raised in saltwater, according a new UF/IFAS Extension document. However, the saltwater sector of the industry […]

Roth is Florida Farmer of the Year

GAINESVILLE — Florida Farm Bureau Federation has named Rick Roth of Palm Beach County as the 2020 Florida Farmer of the Year. A vegetable, herb, rice, sugarcane and sod producer, Rep. Roth is also a member of the Florida House of Representatives. This prestigious honor is awarded to a recipient by a panel of judges […]

UF/IFAS faculty to host webinar series for agriculture, natural resource professionals

By Jarred ShellhouseUF/IFASSpecial to the Lake Okeechobee News GAINESVILLE — A new webinar series, focused on professional development for agriculture and natural resources professionals during a global pandemic, is set to take place this summer. Megan Stein, agricultural education and communications lecturer at the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, will lead […]

Comment sought on USDA tomato marketing changes

By USDA AMS ProduceSpecial to the Lake Okeechobee News WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is proposing changes to the handling requirements under the federal marketing order for tomatoes grown in Florida. The Florida Tomato Committee recommended the changes to bring previously exempt Roma tomatoes under the marketing order’s handling regulations. The […]

Craig Frey named new chief Hendry Extension agent

McAvoy names his replacement IMMOKALEE — Gene McAvoy was proud on Wednesday, June 3, to introduce Craig Frey, who is more or less his replacement in Hendry County. Mr. McAvoy, who is now the associate director for stakeholder relations with the University of Florida/IFAS Southwest Florida Research and Education Center in Immokalee after “retiring” last […]

Cattlemen report animals butchered

Hendry and Glades County law enforcement officials report a recent increase in agricultural crimes. On May 27, the Glades County Sheriff’s Office was called to respond to a rural area off of State Road 78 West, between Wayman Road and U.S. 27. “A Glades County rancher discovered that one of his cows had been butchered […]

Commissioner Nikki Fried highlights $522 million in COVID-19 crop losses

TALLAHASSEE — On April 23, Agriculture Commissioner Nicole “Nikki” Fried and the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services (FDACS) released the Florida Seasonal Crop COVID-19 Impact Assessment, a new report providing data on crop losses facing Florida farmers. Based on figures reported by growers, total crop losses across the state through mid-April 2020 may […]

Employees complete Florida Crystals’ 59th annual sugarcane crop

WEST PALM BEACH — Florida Crystals completed its 2019-20 sugarcane crop season, thanks to the dedication and tremendous perseverance of its employees to implement strict health and safety standards to combat COVID-19 while working hard to keep grocery store shelves stocked and food makers supplied during this time of crisis. The company finalized its crop […]