Osceola County Farm Bureau starts new year

OSCEOLA COUNTY — Approximately 60 farmer members of the Osceola County Farm Bureau gathered at the 2014 county annual meeting on Sept. 29 at the Evart Free Methodist Church in Evart to take action on issues important to Osceola County farmers.

Jamie Clover Adams, Director of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development was the speaker. She talked to the members about the importance of agriculture to the economy of Michigan. There are many grants available for ag businesses and career opportunities for young people. She also encouraged farmers to have a MAEAP technician come to their farm to see if they want to be MAEAP verified. MAEAP helps the farmer implement sound agricultural practices and reduce the risk of legal and environmental issues.

Pat Kailing chairman of the Policy Development Committee and his members: Amy Martin, L. D. Hesselink, Jerry Lindquist and Ben Eisenga presented resolutions dealing with many issues facing farmers: alternative fuels, water use, farm equipment on roads, country of origin labeling, pesticide regulations and roads.

In addition to setting its own policy agenda for the coming year, the Osceola County Farm Bureau’s 2014 Annual Meeting was a chance to recognize the 27 members who had belonged to the organization for 50 years or more. Betsy White and her late husband Paul joined Farm Bureau on Jan. 6, 1945. Betsy is the only member left of the original members who helped start the organization in 1945. She received a certificate of appreciation for belonging 69 years.

“We appreciate their dedicated service to local agriculture,” said Jess Erler, president of the Osceola County Farm Bureau.

Several local farmers were elected to the board of directors:

  • District 1 – Mark Norman
  • District 3 – Scott Boyd
  • Directors-at-large – Jess Erler, Roxie Erler

In other news, Sarah Emington of Reed City was recognized as the 2014 college scholarship award winner. Erler presented her with a certificate. Sarah is attending Ferris State University seeking a degree in elementary education.