Office of Agriculture Marketing and Product Promotion
Kentucky 100 Fair Oaks Lane, 5th Floor
Department Frankfort, KY 40601 Phone 502-564-4983
of Agriculture www.kyagr.com
A Consumer Volume No. 9 Issue No. 2 Released May 22, 2008 Published Quarterly
Living A Legacy
By Bill Holleran Hardin sees a trend in customers
Marketing Matters Editor buying locally this season with the high
cost of gasoline. So this year most of
their advertising will target local cus-
K.C. Hardin, along with his wife, tomers. Hardin said people are also en-
Pauline, and daughter, Jennifer, have joying their gardens more and want a
kept a family business thriving in good foundation of plants to build on.
South Shore, Kentucky in Greenup “We are fortunate here to have staff like
County. John Miller and Dianne Lybrook, who
This year will mark the Hardin fam- have worked for us for 20 years. They
ily’s 90th year in the greenhouse busi- really know plants and how our business
ness, which was started in 1918 by works. They are a great resource to an-
K.C. Hardin is well known in South swer our customers’ technical questions.
K.C.’s grandfather, W.F. Hardin. His Shore, Ky., for his geraniums.
grandfather used gas and radiant heat to A business is just as successful as the
keep the greenhouses warm through the people working for you. Everyone here
winter months since natural gas was Today the Hardins’ hospitality keeps works as a team,” Hardin said.
cheap back then. W.F. Hardin intro- their business thriving. The greenhouses Although farmers are facing many
duced Kentucky 31 fescue to the region are very clean and organized and reflect challenges these days with increasing
during the 1940s. He raised and pro- the Hardins’ commitment to quality. fuel, labor, and fertilizer costs, Hardin is
duced fescue seed that was cleaned and They offer bedding and vegetable plants optimistic that young farmers will have
sold out of the old seed house that’s still seasonally and target Derby and a future in agriculture. His advice is to
on the property. K.C.’s father took over Mother’s Day holidays to kick off their have discipline and keep everything in
the greenhouse business in the ‘50s, and season. order and to get your head on straight by
at his father’s passing in 1976, the torch K.C. believes in treating customers developing good habits. “You must be
was passed to K.C., who continues to right. “We’re working for our custom- able to run a tight budget and keep de-
live out the legacy of his forefathers. ers, and we want them to be successful tailed records so nothing is left to guess-
K.C has been involved with the fam- with the plants they buy from us,” he work,” he said. “People just getting
ily farm since he was a boy. “Back then said. “You can have a customer 20 years started in agriculture need to do their
we were famous in this area for our and lose them in 20 seconds. Repeat homework, test the water and start out
‘Hardin Honey Rock’ melons,” he said. business is a high priority for us and an small. Crawl before you walk, and walk
“Granddad owned hundreds of acres and honor. We believe you should be able to before you run, then build on your suc-
raised hay and had a large truck garden. back up what you tell your customers, cess. Be positive and don’t get discour-
He had 7-8 tenant houses on the prop- and your word and handshake is your aged. There’s often light at the end of
erty and had as many as 40 people that bond.” the tunnel.”
worked for him. Hardin feels that his customers are Hardin also makes sure to break cy-
“He had a lot of foresight and always his boss and it’s his job to listen to them cles in his greenhouse by thoroughly
wanted to know about tomorrow and and serve their needs. “Our repeat busi- cleaning them out at the end of the sea-
was always looking toward the future. ness is great because there is a customer son so there is no chance problems
My dad was the same way. We had a lot reunion here each spring that we all look could develop from plants that are car-
of field days here when I was a kid and forward to,” he said. “We also believe ried over. He is very meticulous about
we had cookouts and served people that whether you buy anything or not having a clean environment and healthy
good country meals. Everyone sat on you should receive the same treatment plants.
straw bales, and even the bankers from and positive experience.” For more information about K.C.
town would come out in their suits to Greenhouse and Garden Center call
enjoy the field days.” (606) 932-4238.
Printed with state funds on recycled paper
Competitions, Festivals Showcase Top Kentucky Wines
Staff Report taste some great Kentucky Proud wines.” ment of Agriculture, the University of Ken-
tucky and the Kentucky Grape and Wine
Kentucky wines The schedule of events includes: Council are working together to expand the
will be put to the industry and make the Commonwealth a pro-
test by experts and ducer of great wine.”
casual enthusiasts • Bardstown – Kentucky Wine Fest Com- For more information on Kentucky’s
alike in four up- petition, April 19, and Bardstown Ro- growing grape and wine industry visit www.
coming competi- tary’s Wine & Cheese Tasting, May 31 Kentuckywine.com or contact KDA’s grape
tions and four fes- and wine marketing specialist, Stacia Alford,
• Highland Heights – Northern Kentucky
tivals. at firstname.lastname@example.org or (502) 564-4983.
Commercial Wine Competition, May
Events are set 10, and Northern Kentucky Wine Fest,
for Nicholasville, June 7
• Danville – Central Kentucky WineFest
land Heights and
Competition, May 17, and Central
Danville. Each site
Kentucky WineFest, June 13
will host a compe-
tition of Kentucky wines with a festival to • Louisville – Kentucky State Fair
follow about a month later. The Kentucky Commercial Wine Competition, Aug. 10.
State Fair will hold its first commercial wine Will Sheep and Goat Market
competition in August. Prices Stay High?
Seven Kentucky wines brought 20 medals
“Kentucky’s wine industry is growing in home in February from the Florida State Fair
quantity and quality,” Agriculture Commis- International Wine and Grape Juice Competi- By Tess Caudill
sioner Richie Farmer said. “A generation tion, which attracted more than 1,600 entries
ago, Kentucky had no wineries; now we have from 36 states and 10 foreign countries. With all the troubles these days in the
47. Some of our wineries are good enough to livestock industry, it’s hard to get very ex-
compete with the biggest and best winemak- “The growth of our wine industry is gen- cited about raising and selling livestock. For
ers in the world. These competitions will erating economic activity in our rural com- most industries the dropping market prices
give our winemakers a chance to measure munities,” Commissioner Farmer said. “It’s coupled with the ever-rising cost of feed just
themselves against their peers, and the festi- also creating demand for grapes, which helps hasn’t left much room for profit. There is one
vals will provide visitors the opportunity to Kentucky farmers. The Kentucky Depart- bright spot in the industry, however, but you
have to look down to find it—down to sheep
and goat level.
Kentucky National Dairy Show Highlights Market goats in the 45- to 60-pound range
have been bringing around $1.50 per pound,
By Katherine Wheatley and market lambs over 100 pounds
are still fetching upwards of $1.20 per pound
Exhibitors sold 229 lots for $671,950 at around the country. Fortunately for sheep and
the 2008 Kentucky National Dairy Shows goat producers, these kinds of prices can help
and Sales April 3-4 at the Kentucky Exposi- compensate for some of the higher inputs all
tion Center in Louisville. livestock producers are facing. The question
The top-selling female, consigned by is: How long will it last?
Wayne Sliker of St. Paris, Ohio, sold in the Typically sheep and goat prices are al-
Brown Swiss sale for $13,100. Chris Durbin ways higher in the winter and spring. The
of Leitchfield, Ky., purchased the sale-topper. unfortunate news is they almost always drop
The Ayrshire, Guernsey, Holstein and Jersey in the summer. Sometimes this drop can be
breeds also were represented. quick and very significant with past markets
In conjunction with the Kentucky National dropping as much as 30 to 40 cents in a
Dairy Show and Sale, the fourth annual Ken- week’s time. But this year has been a little
tucky Kow-A-Rama featured 228 entries rep- different. With the drought in the Southeast
resenting the Ayrshire, Brown Swiss, Guern- and the rains in Texas, the market pattern has
sey, Holstein, Jersey, Red and White, and been a little off all year. It seemed to take
Milking Shorthorn breeds. Ben and Kirby Congratulations to all consignors, purchasers forever for prices to rebound this winter.
Sparrow of Owenton, Ky., exhibiting in the and exhibitors at the 2008 Kentucky National Plus, a tremendous number of ewes and does
Brown Swiss show, took home Supreme Jun- Dairy Show and Sale and the Kentucky Kow- were culled this fall as producers faced the
ior Champion of the Youth Show and the A-Rama Spring Show. For more information, winter with little or no hay supply. Hope-
Open Show. Supreme Grand Champion of contact Katherine Wheatley at the Kentucky fully, somehow this will all add up to sheep
the Youth Show came out of the Jersey show Department of Agriculture at (502) 564-4983. and goat prices staying stronger longer into
and was exhibited by Ben Sauder of Tremont, the summer, and our sheep and goat indus-
Ill. Supreme Grand Champion of the Open tries will continue to be profitable ones for
Show also came out of the Jersey show and farmers.
was exhibited by Dick Miller of Osgood, Ind.
A Perspective On Organic Agriculture Production
Michael Fitzgerald grow plants and animals. They work to im- ues to grow.
KDA Certified Organic prove the soil structure and its moisture- If you’re interested in becoming one of the
Program Coordinator holding capacity, thus improving the soil growing list of farmers who want to help
food web, which increases plant health. meet this demand, call Michael Fitzgerald at
For some the jury may still be out on the In organic farming insects and other pests (502) 564-0290 ext. 230 and find out how to
effects of chemical fertilizer on our plants, are managed through preventative methods get started. Your land must be free of any
growth stimulants, and antibiotics use in meat such as crop rotation and planting pest- prohibited substances such as chemical fertil-
production or pesticides that are applied to deterrent species of plants. Genetically modi- izer and pesticides for a period of at least
our crops. Others have seen proof enough to fied or bioengineered strains of plants are three years. Why not start transitioning some
grow and eat organic foods. prohibited in organic production. or all of your farm today? The application to
Organic food is produced using biological Organic farming is more time consuming, have your farm certified with the Kentucky
methods of fertilization and insect control but organically produced products bring a Department of Agriculture as “Certified Or-
instead of chemically formulated fertilizer premium price back to the farmer. The por- ganic” includes a fee of $125, and this in-
and pesticides. It’s a whole different system tion of American farms that produced organic cludes the general farm or livestock inspec-
of farming, much as our forefathers farmed crops and livestock once was miniscule, but tion that is required by USDA, which estab-
years ago. there has been a huge increase in sales in just lishes organic rules and regulations. For more
Organic farmers have proven that they the last few years. Why? The consumer is information on Kentucky’s Organic program
can be successful using organic production asking for it. Kentucky has been no exception and links to USDA, which regulates the na-
methods. Organic materials including animal to this growth trend. Organic farming is the tional program, visit our organic program
manure, compost, grass clippings, cover fastest-growing agricultural segment in the Web site at http://www.kyagr.com/marketing/
crops, and other practices improve the soil nation. The number of Kentucky producer plantmktg/organic/index.htm
structure and nourish the soil biology, which applications is up nearly 300 percent in just
nourishes the plants and in turn nourishes us. one year. Present demand for organic food
Organic farmers seek to do more than just exceeds the supply, and this demand contin-
COOK OFF WILL DETERMINE KENTUCKY’S
Staff Report featured Kentucky Proud seafood to each Save the Date
To enter, competitors must fax com- The first-ever Kentucky Direct
Kentucky chefs will test their skills at
pleted entry documents to the Kentucky Marketing Conference hosted by the
preparing Kentucky Proud seafood at the
Department of Agriculture at (502) 564- Kentucky Department of Agriculture
third annual Great Kentucky Seafood
0303 by May 23. A $100 entry fee must will be held November 13-14.
Cook Off June 9 at Jefferson Community
be written to the Kentucky Aquaculture Seminars will be facilitated by the
and Technical College in Louisville.
Association and submitted by May 30. KDA and will focus on helping pro-
The winner will represent Kentucky at
Competitors must submit three recipes ducers find ways to increase market
the Great American Seafood Cook Off in
and digital photos of the dish, the chef share, improve product quality, and
New Orleans this summer.
and the chef’s restaurant. The photos will grow their customer base. Tentative
“Kentucky is known for its great food,
be featured in the 2008 Kentucky Aqua- topics include farmers’ markets, Inter-
including delicious seafood dishes,” Agri-
culture Cook Booklet. They must be e- net marketing, the Good Agricultural
culture Commissioner Richie Farmer
mailed to Angela Caporelli, the Kentucky Practices program, and community
said. “The Great Kentucky Seafood Cook
Department of Agriculture’s aquaculture supported agriculture or CSAs. The
Off has become a much-anticipated event
marketing specialist, at angela. keynote speakers will hold nationally
for showcasing the best of Kentucky’s
email@example.com. recognized credentials. Save the
seafood cuisine. It also produces dishes
Recipes for the cook off will be pub- date—more information will follow in
that most people can cook for their fami-
lished for distribution at the Kentucky the August issue of Marketing Matters
State Fair and posted on the Kentucky and on http://www.kyagr.com/
Competitors will prepare seafood
Department of Agriculture’s Web site, marketing/plantmktg/index.htm.
dishes within one hour. Entries should be
consumer-friendly and easy for the at- www.kyagr.com.
home chef to prepare. Dishes will be For complete instructions, go to www.
judged on taste, execution of skills and kyagr.com/seafood.htm. This year’s
presentation, and ease of preparation util- sponsors include the Kentucky Aquacul-
izing Kentucky-grown aquaculture prod- ture Association, Kentucky State Univer-
ucts. The Kentucky Department of Agri- sity, and Jefferson Community and Tech-
culture and the Kentucky Aquaculture nical College.
Association will supply the chef’s chosen
Commercial Hog Producers Thinking Green
By Warren Beeler to be finished. This process will take liq-
Director of Value-Added Animal Production uid manure that is 75-80 percent water
and turn it into dry, high-nutrient fertil-
A research project on a family hog izer that is easy to transport. Because of
farm in Daviess County may change the its added value, organic fertilizer may be
way manure is utilized – and address a better sold in 50-pound units for use in
longstanding perception problem with flower beds and greenhouses rather than
large production units. in bulk for use on cropland.
Father-and-son producers Jerry and Swine production units have vastly
J.W. O’Bryan are building a 4,000-head increased in size over the past 20 years
feeding unit that will attempt to compost due in large part to economics of pro-
the manure. The four-room unit includes duction and advantages in marketing. The O’Bryans’ new composting machine
a deep pit style building unit with the bot- The O’Bryan operation is the largest mixes hog manure with wood chips to create
tom of the pit sitting on top of the ground. swine producer based in Kentucky with an environmentally-friendly fertilizer.
A layer of sawdust or some other carbon approximately 4,500 sows. As units
source will be applied to the floor of the have gotten larger the disposal of ma-
pit, which can be heated from a hot water nure has become a major problem and a ers hope the process will limit odor, cap-
system in the floor. Compost will be real perception issue for the industry. Ris- ture all nutrients produced and continue
stirred with a special machine as needed. ing fertilizer prices have enhanced the to improve the pigs’ comfort and health.
For compost to be “Organic,” produc- value of animal waste as a fertilizer, but a The dry, easily transportable fertilizer po-
ers using a windrow system must main- limited amount of land is available for tentially opens new markets for the com-
tain the composting materials at a tem- fertilization, and transporting liquid ma- posted product.
perature between 131 F and 170 F for 15 nure longer distances to reach more land This large-scale composting research
days, during which time, the materials creates added expense. Composting ma- trial, if successful, would allow the large
must be turned a minimum of five times. nure into dry fertilizer addresses the confinement producer to utilize all ma-
Producers using an in-vessel or static aer- transportation problem. nure produced and become a greener,
ated pile system must maintain the com- Dr. Richard Coffey and Dr. Doug more environmentally friendly neighbor.
posting materials at a temperature be- Overhults with the University of Ken- The success of this project could well
tween 131 F and 170 F for 3 days. The tucky are conducting the research, and the change the way swine buildings are con-
compost will be removed and placed in a Kentucky Agricultural Development structed and perceived.
compost building away from the hog unit Board is funding the study. The research-
A Consumer Protection and Service Agency
Richie Farmer, Commissioner
Bill Holleran, Newsletter Editor
100 Fair Oaks Lane, 5th Floor Frankfort, KY 40601 «First Name» «Last Name»
Phone: (502) 564-4983 Fax: (502) 564–0854
visit www.kyagr.com «Organization»
The Department of Agriculture does not discriminate on the basis of
race, color, national origin, sex, religion, age or disability in employ- «Address 2»
ment or the provision of services. Reasonable accommodations for «City» «State» «Zip»
disabilities are provided upon request. Printed with state funds.