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Young farmers sow future

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By Stephanie Doyle

By Stephanie Doyle

news@hclocal.com

A group of farmers hopes to establish themselves as agricultural leaders in Henry County – and are trying to fulfill that dream by forming a new club called Henry County Ag Connections.

Although some of them already knew each other, the 10 guys bonded during the most recent leadership program at the Henry County Chamber of Commerce.

“It really was the brainchild of Steve Moore, Henry County Cooperative Extension, and John Logan Brent,Henry County Judge-Executive,” said local dairy farmer Curtis Coombs, a member of the new club.

Originally, the idea was to have a young farmers group, but they decided to expand the concept to be open to beginner farms and farmers who want to learn and be proactive on their farms, said Coombs, who breeds cows at his dairy operation, Jericho Acres Dairy in Smithfield. He also grows corn for silage, alfalfa and tobacco.

“It’s basically a young famers club but it’s aimed at connections – we’re just looking for members who want to learn more,” Coombs said, adding that there is no age limit for members. “I think our main goal is just to have us be the future agricultural leaders in the county.”

The group is planning their first meeting for 6:30 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 14, at the Henry County Cooperative Extension office, 2151 Campbellsburg Rd. in New Castle. Kentucky Department of Agriculture’s Policy Specialist Warren Beeler will be the featured speaker.

“I’m sure there will be a great discussion of current issues in agriculture,” Steve Moore said.

Members of the group so far include cattle, dairy, tobacco and grain farmers.

“With the average age of farmers in Henry County rising to 58 years in the latest census of agriculture, it is refreshing to see a nice group of young people establishing themselves as farmers and leaders,” Moore said. “Already, they are a bright and well-informed group, and are rapidly becoming involved in many facets of agricultural leadership including the Henry County Agriculture Development Council, the fair board, the Cattleman’s Association, the Farmers Market Association, the Extension Council, and Farm Bureau, just to name a few.”

“I am personally very excited to be able to work with this group as they seek to find ways to be successful in agriculture,” Moore said.