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									Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr., Governor Michael S. Steele, Lt. Governor Lewis R. Riley, Secretary Dr. John R. Brooks, D.V.M., Dep. Secretary


Publication MDA#11-001-05 Volume 13, No. 3 Winter 2005

Secretary’s Corner
by Lewis R. Riley
What an exciting year this has been. It has been nearly unprecedented for the wonderful growing conditions and subsequent yields that many of us saw. We also faced and handled resourcefully an enormous number and variety of issues. Much of what agriculture has accomplished recently and can look to in the coming year is thanks to Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr. and Lt. Gov. Michael Steele, who have both supported agriculture strongly. The Administration has created what I characterize as a “culture of cooperation” among agencies to work out solutions on the environment and the economy in support of agriculture. They are listening to farmers, taking their recommendations and turning them into action. Under the leadership of the administration, MDA has worked with new advisory groups and forums on: grain, horses, grapes/wine, young farmers, poultry, nutrient management and others to make sure that the state is changing with the times and addressing needs of agriculture. We continue to work with the Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene to find ways to make on-farm value-added processing more feasible for Maryland farmers without compromising our very high food safety standards. As a result of recommendations from the Poultry Action Team, the Department of Business and Economic Development approved its first Maryland Industrial Development Financing Authority (MIDFA) loan guarantee for an agricultural enterprise – a startup poultry operation. Together we are working on a variety of issues to protect our plants, animals and food supply, manage invasive species and pathogens such as Soybean Rust, open new markets for our products locally, nationally, and internationally, preserve farmland and to make sure that agriculture
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Photo courtesy of UMD Eastern Shore

Secretary Lewis R. Riley giving the keynote address at the University of Maryland Eastern Shore’s Small Farm Conference on Nov. 20. Secretary Riley spoke on “Maryland Agriculture: Small Farmers Finding a Profitable Niche.”

MDA Profile
William K. Boniface, better known as Billy, was recently selected to chair the newly established Young Farmers Advisory Board for a three-year term. Boniface, 40, is from Harford County and he represents the equine industry on the Board. He manages the breeding division of family-owned Bonita Farm in Darlington, Md., one of the state’s leading commercial Thoroughbred establishments and new home to 1994 Kentucky Derby winner Go for Gin. Boniface also currently serves as president of the Maryland Horse Breeders Association (MHBA). Previously, he served as the MHBA’s vice-president and legislative committee chairman (2003-2004) and secretarytreasurer (2002-2003). Boniface is a director of Maryland Million Ltd., a board member of the Maryland Farm Bureau Political Action Committee, and a board member of the Maryland Horse Council, among other affiliations.

William K. Boniface, Chair, Young Farmers Advisory Board

Ag in Annapolis
By Sandy Redmer, MDA Legislative Liaison
The 2005 General tious diseases in livestock and Assembly session is fast poultry. approaching and the Maryland ● The department hopes to Department of Agriculture is pass legislation that will add diligently preparing legislation new members to the Maryland that will improve existing proAgricultural Commission repgrams and regulatory processes. resenting agribusiness, forestry The Ehrlich-Steele and aquaculture. The new Administration and Secretary membership will reflect the Lewis R. Riley are committed to changing face of agriculture. carrying out the regulatory obli- Sandy Redmer, MDA ● MDA is encouraged Legislative Liaison gations of the department while about passing a bill that will protecting and enhancing the economic viaenable us to better protect Maryland conbility of the agricultural industry in sumers through more regular inspections Maryland. There are a number of agriculof scales and measuring devices. Since turally-based proposals with economic and 1992, the Weights and Measures Program environmental focus to follow this session. has lost 50 percent of its inspectors due to insufficient funding. Today, the program ● The department hopes to pass legishas 14 inspectors responsible for approxilation that will help bring chronic violators mately 62,000 weighing and measuring of Commercial Pesticide, Feed, Fertilizer devices throughout Maryland. We are and Liming Materials Laws into complihopeful that we will be able to work with ance through civil penalties as opposed to industry and legislators to pass this bill and criminal penalties which require long, maintain consumer confidence in drawn-out judicial proceedings. Maryland. ● With an avian influenza incident The Maryland Department of behind us, Governor Ehrlich and Agriculture is looking forward to working Secretary Riley are very interested in with Governor Ehrlich and the General passing legislation that will give the Assembly for another successful year for department the authority it needs to preagriculture. vent the spread of contagious and infec-

MDA Highlights
MDA, Poultry Industry Conduct Regional Risk Assessment Exercise The MDA, working with MEMA, Battelle Corporation, the states of Delaware and Virginia, and the Delmarva Poultry Industry Inc., successfully conducted a risk vulnerability assessment of the poultry industry on Dec. 3. The purpose of the table top exercise is to enhance the protection, identification, response, mitigation and recovery capabilities of all stakeholders associated with the Delmarva poultry industry by identifying and discussing potential solutions to capability gaps in these areas. Participants discussed how they would respond to an animal health outbreak that had human health implications. The outcome will be updated emergency response plans for the industry. Chesapeake Bay Restoration Demonstration Site Launched The Eastern Shore’s Chesapeake Bay Environmental Center (CBEC) was established on Nov. 4 as the State’s first comprehensive Bay restoration demonstration site. The site was chosen because it closely replicates the habitat, water quality and problems facing much of the Bay. It has a broad, diverse ecosystem close to major waterfront development and high-traffic boating corridors. The site will show how the EhrlichSteele Administration’s three-point plan – oyster restoration, bay grass replenishment and nutrient reduction – can help restore the Bay. On-site projects will include: planting of cover crops and forest buffers to keep nutrients from running off into our waterways; installation of living shoreline control measures to prevent erosion and provide habitat for terrapins, nesting crabs, and other aquatic life; placement of oyster reefs to encourage population growth; planting of bay grasses to produce oxygen and provide habitat for juvenile fish and crabs; installing state of the art septic systems and upgrading efficiency of a nearby wastewater treatment plant to reduce nutrients. The first major project currently underway is the planting of a five-acre oyster bed, reef ball placement and bay grass plantings. The public-private project will be run by the Maryland Department of Natural
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Secretary’s Corner
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remains a strong and viable industry. This year has been exciting for all of the new situations we have worked through and challenging for the budget and staffing shortages we have faced. Dr. John Brooks and I look forward to working with the agriculture community and all of our partners in governments, the universities, and private organizations to continue to make Maryland agriculture more successful and profitable. We have a lot to look forward to in the coming year.

MDA Celebrates the New Year with a New Website
Check out the new look for Maryland agriculture—online. The new MDA website provides outstanding service to Marylanders consistent with the quality service our staff has provided for the past 30 years. The new website provides current, user-friendly information in an easy to navigate format. Log on and check out all that MDA has to offer:


MDA Highlights
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Resources and CBEC. Other project partners include: The Conservation Fund, Chesapeake Bay Trust, Chesapeake Bay Foundation, Oyster Recovery Partnership, Maryland Environmental Service and the Maryland departments of Agriculture, Environment and Planning. Century Farm Families Honored At the State House Lt. Governor Michael S. Steele honored Maryland’s farm families for their commitment to farming and their leadership in preserving agricultural land by presenting Century Farm designations to eight families who have farmed the same land for more than 100 years. The ceremony was held in the Governor’s Reception Room at the State House on Nov. 16. Since the program began in 1994, 128 farms – about one percent of the state’s 12,200 farms – have received the Century Farm designation. The oldest farm honored this year was the 60-acre Ridout-Brice Farm established in 1793 in Anne Arundel County by ancestors of Anne R. Brice, the current owner. The 211-year-old farm currently grows sod and boards horses. In the past the family produced corn, oats, hay, soybeans, mixed pasture plants and a variety of livestock. Additional farms honored with the “Century Farm” designation this year are: ● ARK Farm, Caroline County – 70-acre multiple crop and livestock farm, established in 1904 and owned by William D. and Albert R. Krueger. ● Nelson and Janice Barnes, Carroll County – 126-acre multiple crop and grain farm also produces a variety of livestock. The farm, owned by Nelson and Janice Barnes, was established in 1849 and has been named Owing’s Choice and Rochester Farm. ● Daniel F. and Eleanor G. Shipley, Carroll County – 130-acre multiple crop and livestock farm, established in 1904 and owned by Daniel F. and Eleanor G. Shipley. The farm, which has been named The Resurvey on Lime Pitt, was also used as a lime quarry where lime was processed and picked up by farmers to use on their land. ● Bellview Farm, Dorchester County – 99 acre-farm, established in

Lt. Governor Steele along with Sec. Riley honors Anne Brice and family friend with a Century Farm certificate for the Ridout-Brice Farm.

1904 and owned by Catherine J. Bell and acre farm, established in 1903 and owned the late Charles A. Bell. Crops raised on by the John D. Marshall family. The farm the farm include strawberries, tomatoes, predominantly grew grain and vegetable wheat, corn, barley, soybeans, silage and crops for the first 55 years and mostly hay crops for cows. For the first 25 nursery crops for the past 45 years and years, the farm was used as a dairy and also raised cows and hogs until 1960. then transitioned into poultry. For more information about the ● Enniskillen Farm, Talbot County – Century Farm program or a program appli120-acre farm, established in 1903 and cation, call 410-841-5882. owned by the Claggett and Crawford families. Recent crops include soybeans and Maryland Wine and Grape Advisory field corn. Prior crops included a mix of Committee Formed vegetables and fruit trees and a variety of Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr., recently established the Maryland Wine livestock. Of special note, the farm’s and Grape Advisory largest barn is a reference Committee to help point on surveyor maps. ● Felfoot Farm, strengthen Maryland’s Washington County – rural and agricultural 406-acre corn, soybean economy. Members and hay farm that also include state officials, has produced a variety growers, winemakers of livestock. Established and legislators tasked to identify strategies to in 1889, the farm is curstrengthen and expand rently owned by Austin Maryland’s grape and A., Joanne M. and wine economies and Dwayne A. Flook. Of their markets. special note, in 1916, Agriculture Secretary milk was sent from the farm by cans on trains Lewis R. Riley formed going east. the committee, which Joe Fiola, University of Maryland ● Marshalls’ met for the first time Cooperative Extension viticulture Riverbank Farms, Ltd., on Nov. 3. expert and Governor Ehrlich plant a (continued on page 4) Wicomico County – 95- grape vine at the Governor’s mansion.


MDA Highlights
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● Donald F. Munson, Maryland State Senate

Maryland has 16 wineries which produce more than 160 different wines. Many varieties of grapes are grown and Maryland wine is produced in all styles–from dry to dessert. Maryland wine sales were up 13 percent in 2003 and represent a $5.6 million industry in the State. The wineries are popular tourist destinations and attract visitors to other nearby sites. Committee members are: ● Albert Copp, Woodhall Wine Cellars ● Rob DeFord, Boordy Vineyards ● Richard Penna, Antietam Vineyards (Chairperson) ● Bob Scott, grower, Bellendine Vineyard ● Dr. J. Scott Angle, University of Maryland College of Agriculture and Natural Resources/Maryland Cooperative Extension ● Virginia P. Clagett, Maryland House of Delegates ● Dennis Castleman, Maryland Department of Business and Economic Development ● Dean Kenderdine, Office of the Comptroller ● S. Patrick McMillan, Maryland Department of Agriculture Marylanders: Do You Want the Best? Be sure to check out the Maryland's Best website,, to find information about local growers and farmers and also tips regarding growing plants, and links to agricultural activities calendars.

Veterinarians Asked to Join Emergency Response Team Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr., has tasked MDA to develop a volunteer corps of veterinarians and animal technicians who can provide services during emergencies in Maryland. The purpose of the corps is to provide a cadre of trained individuals who will supplement normal veterinary services in Maryland for any animal species requiring assistance. Veterinarians and technicians must have a current state veterinary license, though it does not have to be from Maryland, at the time of a disaster. Prior to this team approach, Maryland has relied on the mobilization of government veterinarians, but there are not enough to go around should widespread animal disease outbreaks or other emergencies occur. No one can predict if, when or where an animal emergency will take place - through bioterrorism, an unintentional disease introduction, or a natural disaster. Having a group of trained, qualified professionals ready to respond could make the difference in keeping any situation under control. For more information or to join the corps, contact Dr. Jacob Casper at 443394-1449 or Doug Scott Appointed as Asst. Secretary for Resource Conservation The MDA welcomed Douglas D. Scott as assistant secretary for Resource Conservation on Nov. 22. Scott, a life-long farmer and businessman, fills the position left vacant in July when Royden N.

Powell, III accepted a position as town manager in his hometown of Centreville. His broad-based agriculture background and respect within the farm community will Doug Scott help move forward the Ehrlich-Steele Administration’s efforts with nutrient management and Chesapeake Bay restoration. For more information about Scott, visit press/scottapp.htm. Robert Ensor Named Ag Conservation Grants Program Manager Robert Ensor is MDA’s new conservation grants program manager in the Office of Resource Conservation. He will oversee cost-share programs that help farmers install best management practices to improve water quality in all of the State’s waterways. Ensor has extensive background working at the U.S. Department of Robert Ensor Agriculture and experience in assessing conservation programs at the national level that will benefit Maryland farmers as they work to protect natural resources and farm profitability. For more information about Ensor, visit Voluntary Johne’s Disease Control Program for Dairy Cattle To control the spread of Johne's disease in the United States, the State
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Ag Around Town
Ag Around Town provides an opportunity to share additional agriculture-related information. To submit an item for Ag Around Town, contact Sue duPont, at (410) 841-5889 or

7th Annual Maryland Rural Summit, Rural Achievement Awards The seventh annual Maryland Rural Summit was held Nov. 4-5 in Solomons, Md. The Summit enabled public and pri-

vate sector leaders to learn about issues and trends in rural development and health care, and to discuss future programmatic and policy implications. More than 200 elected and appointed federal, state, county and municipal officials, and leaders from the private and nonprofit sectors attended. Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr., delivered the keynote address and presented the 2004 Rural Achievement Awards. The Rural Awards honor individuals or organizations that have provided out-

standing leadership or service in the pursuit of a better quality of life in Rural Maryland. The 2004 award winners are: ● Outstanding Rural Economic Development Award: The Upper Shore Workforce Investment Board (Upper Eastern Shore) ● Outstanding Rural Community Development Award: Garrett County Chamber of Commerce (Garrett County and the Town of Oakland)
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MDA Highlights
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of Maryland has established a voluntary program to prevent and eradicate Johne’s disease in dairy cattle. As part of the program, Maryland is offering Johne’s disease tests to cattle producers for a reduced cost. Additionally, an online risk assessment certification program is available at www.VetMedCE. org/portals/Maryland for veterinarians to provide education about the disease. For more information, visit www.mda., or call 301-334-2185. New Young Farmers Advisory Board Represents Diverse Farming Interests Statewide The future of farming in Maryland depends on the success of young farmers. The average age of farmers today is 56 years and nearly 20 percent of the state’s farmers are over 65. As a result of the last legislative session, Governor Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr., established the Young Farmers Advisory Board to provide the next generation of farmers an opportunity to be involved in decisions relating to their industry. The 12-member Board appointed by the Governor will address obstacles and opportunities for young and beginning farmers in Maryland. The first meeting was held at USDA with Dep. Sec. Jim Moseley in Washington, D.C. last fall. Members must be under the age of 45, derive at least 50 percent of their personal income from farming or agricultural activities, and be Maryland resident. The board members are: ● Teresa Batchelor, Maryland Department of Natural Resources, forestry

Maryland Horses Draw International Attention Nearly 20 buyers representing Russia, the Ukraine and Korea purchased 37 horses valued at $337,110 during the Maryland FasigTipton Midlantic Eastern Fall Yearling Sale in Timonium. The international buyers purchased additional Maryland horses through private sales during their visit this fall. These buying delegations are the largest with which MDA has worked in the eight years since the department started a program to seek and identify international buyers to visit Maryland to purchase horses. Members of the delegations attended the Maryland Million at the Pimlico Race Course on Oct. 9 as guests of MDA. The delegations are pictured at the Maryland Million with Governor and Mrs. Robert L. Ehrlich, Jr.

● William K. Boniface, Harford County, equine ● Ric Eaves, Frederick County, dairy ● Trey Hill, Kent County, grain ● Brent Kenney, Wicomico County, greenhouse, grain, poultry ● Katherine Magruder, Maryland Department of Economic Development, Agriculture Business Executive ● E. Keith Menchey, Ph.D., Maryland Department of Agriculture,

Assistant Secretary for Policy ● Jim McWilliams, Baltimore County, nursery industry ● J.D. Rinehart, Washington County, apples ● Patrick Rodgers, Baltimore County, calf, sow, tourism ● Donny Tennyson, St. Mary’s County, grain (former tobacco) ● Terri Wolf-King, Dorchester County, poultry, corn, soy, wheat, strawberries

Ag Around Town
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Outstanding Rural Legislator Award: Senator Donald F. Munson (Washington County) ● Outstanding Rural Legislator Award: Delegate Rudolph C. Cane (Dorchester and Wicomico counties) ● Outstanding Rural Health Program Award: Twin Beaches Community Health Center (Calvert County) ● Outstanding Rural Health

Achievement Award: William Kirk, Jr., President and CEO Chester River Health System (Kent and Queen Anne’s counties) ● Outstanding Rural Health Practitioner Award: Maureen Donovan, Maryland Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (Eastern Shore and Statewide) ● Outstanding Rural Volunteer Award: John Bennett (Cecil County and Eastern Shore) For more information, visit

Southern Maryland Hay and Straw Auction Open Through April There will be a hay and straw auction on the first and third Saturdays of each month from Dec. 4 through April 16 at the Southern Maryland Regional Farmers' Market (SMRFM). The SMRFM is located in the old State Tobacco Warehouse off U. S. Route 301,
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Ag Around Town
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South (next to the Veteran’s Cemetery) in Cheltenham. Doors open at 8:00 a.m. for receiving and the auction starts at 10:00 a.m., rain or shine. For further information, contact SMRFM at 1-800-533FARM(3276) or Mr. Bob Chase at 410798-1580.

Bart Smith Awarded “Support Scientist of the Year” Bart Smith, retired MDA employee and member of the Beltsville Bee Lab, was honored as the Beltsville Area’s “Support Scientist of the Year” at a ceremony held at the U.S. National Arboreum in Washington, D.C., on Sept. 23. Smith retired from his position as state apiary inspector for Maryland and also from his long-held position as secretary for the Apiary Inspectors of America. MDA congratulates Smith for his continued accomplishments. MDA Receives $370,000 for Crop Insurance Education Maryland Department of Agriculture (MDA) is the recipient of $370,000 in U.S. Department of Agriculture funding

to conduct intensive crop insurance education and information programs. The MDA is partnering with the University of Maryland Cooperative Extension and the USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA) to increase farmer awareness and use of federal crop insurance. This partnership funding gives us the ability to expand Maryland’s successful risk management education programs for the benefit of our farmers. Crop insurance is a valuable risk management tool for farmers – it makes the bad years and unexpected production losses survivable. This program is now in its third year and is having a positive impact on the farm community. Crop insurance participation is climbing in Maryland. In 2004, participation increased by 14 percent from 2003 – the greatest increase in the Northeast. In 2003, Maryland farmers received $11.3 million in indemnity payments from crop insurance. Producers spent $3.3 million to pay for crop insurance premiums in 2003. For more information about crop insurance, contact Mark Powell, director of special projects for MDA, at (410) 841-5775.

MDA Calendar
MDA TRAINING SESSIONS AND WORKSHOPS Visit for current training sessions, workshops and events. 9TH ANNUAL MARYLAND HORSE WORLD EXPO January 20-23, 2005 Maryland State Fairgrounds Timonium, MD 301-916-0852 AG TOURISM CONFERENCE AND WORKSHOP JANUARY 27, 2005 Chesapeake College Training Center Easton, MD 410-822-1244 8TH ANNUAL MARYLAND ROCKFISH CELEBRATION COOKING CONTEST January 29, 2004 Ocean City Convention Center 410-841-5820 or 888-841-5828 (in Md.) MARYLAND AGRICULTURE DINNER February 3, 2005 Michael’s Eighth Avenue Glen Burnie, MD 410-208-9701

Address Correction Requested 50 Harry S. Truman Parkway Annapolis, MD 21401


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