Grains of Knowledge

Spotlight on… Farm Progress Days

In August, one of our Agribusiness Field Managers attended The Farm Progress Show in Boone, Iowa.  This is the nations largest outdoor farm show.   It is an annual opportunity to showcase the latest and greatest grain and livestock handling equipment, farm machinery, seed technology, ag safety, ag chemicals and much more.  Another unique part of attending these shows was all the field demonstrations with current equipment or planting, cultivating and harvesting. This year the show featured several "hot topics" including weather trends, climate implications and growth in population.  The Farm Bill was another topic that received a lot of attention and U.S. […]

Say Cheese!

Each year, the Ohio State Fair attracts thousands of people from Ohio and nearby states. Many people attend the fair to enjoy elephant ears, corn dogs and other fair favorites. Some prefer to swing to the beat as they hear their favorite local and national bands perform. Yet for some still, rides are the way to go as they spend their time dashing, flipping and spinning around the fairgrounds. Much like you, Westfield Insurance is no stranger to the Ohio State Fair. While Westfield’s animal raising days are over, they help to support the Youth Reserve Program. Columbus Pictures: Ohio […]

Westfield Gardens

In an effort to reduce stress and promote a team dynamic environment, Westfield partnered with Boyert’s Garden Center and local farmers to create Westfield Gardens. The idea for Westfield Gardens originated last year, but a rainy season prevented people from gardening until this year.     In an article by, they reveal some of the many benefits of gardening. Stress Relief : Gardening can help fight stress better than other relaxing activities. Better Mental Health: People who garden have decreased depression symptoms Exercise: All of the weeding, planting, digging, hauling and pulling makes for a low-impact workout. Nutrition: Studies have shown […]

Agriculture Reform, Food, and Jobs Act of 2012—“The Farm Bill”

History The United States adopted the first “Farm Bill” in 1933 with President Roosevelt implementing his “New Deal.” This original legislature—Agricultural Adjustment Act—paid farmers subsidies to restrict planting and livestock. Almost 80 years later, we still have a farm Bill; however, it has expanded to cover more areas such as research funding for energy, conservation, nutrition, and rural development in addition to subsidy payments. The Senate’s Farm Bill The Senate passed the Farm Bill (on June 21, 2012) by a vote of 64 to 35. The Senate’s approved version of the Farm Bill ends all direct payments,  ends farm payments […]

June is Ohio Wine Month

Did you know Ohio is home to more than 160 wineries, which employ more than 4,100 people and generate more than $580 million in economic activity for Ohio? Ohio Wines- Past to Present Over the last 10 years, Ohio’s wine industry has continued to grow because of the state’s favorable conditions for grape growing. Ohio’s soil, drainage, and climate make up the terroir (from the French word for land), which has a direct impact on the wine that results from the grapes that are grown. Ohio’s fertile limestone soil and moderate temperatures along the Ohio River and Lake Erie produce […]

National Dog Bite Prevention Week

Did you know that approximately 4.5 million Americans are bitten by a dog annually? As part of National Dog Bite Prevention Week, Westfield wants to help you to maintain safety on your farm by sharing dog safety tips, and encouraging a positive environment for animals and humans alike. National Dog Bite Prevention Week To help educate the public on dog safety, Westfield’s Risk Factors team compiled a list of safety tips shared by The U.S. Postal Service, the American Veterinary Medical Association and Center for Disease Control and Prevention. For more information, check out the Risk Factors blog post — Bite Down on […]

Agribusiness News – Week of April 9, 2012

USDA Extends CRP Sign-Up There are so many farmers applying to idle their land — opting to take government payments in lieu of planting crops — that the Department of Agriculture is extending the enrollment period for a week. The USDA would not release any data on new applicants for the land idling program, but spokesman Matt Herrick said officials there were surprised because strong crop prices had been expected to dampen interest. Now farmers will have until Apr. 13 to apply for the Conservation Reserve program, or CRP. The program is designed to take the most environmentally sensitive land […]

Ohio Severe Weather Awareness Week

Attention: Ohio Statewide Tornado Drill is scheduled for Wednesday, March 28 at 9:50 a.m. Check with your town, business or school for drill details.  via A great post from our sister blog, Risk Factors.

Agribusiness News – Week of March 19, 2012

Commodity markets gain strength With consumers paying $4/gal. at the pump, cash corn nearing $7/bu. and copper trading near $4/lb., it’s clear that commodity markets held fairly strong in the first 11 weeks of the year. Global financial firm Credit Suisse said market strength in February stemmed from an overall improvement in the worldwide macroeconomic environment. “The economic data released toward the end of the month highlighted continued gradual improvement in global growth momentum, which is supportive to future commodity demand,” Nelson Louie, global head of commodities for Credit Suisse’s asset management operation, said. Louie noted that the markets remain […]