TORONTO, Feb. 23 /CNW/ - The sponsors of the Ontario Pasture Award - the
Ontario Cattlemen's Association (OCA), MAPLESEED and the Ontario Forage
Council (OFC) - are pleased to announce that James McKinlay "Silver
Springs Farms" at Ravenna in Grey County, is the winner of the 2011
Pasture Award. The prestigious award was presented today at the OCA
Annual General Meeting. For his environmental and pasture improvements
and management, McKinlay will receive a cash award of $750 and a bag of
forage seed, courtesy of MAPLESEED, plus a complimentary stay for one
night at the OCA Annual Meeting.
James and his wife, Joan McKinlay, operate Silver Springs Farms with
approximately 400 acres of pasture and 500 acres of cash crop including
winter wheat, soybeans, canola, barley and corn. James is quick to
point out that, in their operation, a good crop rotation is extremely
important and forages play a vital role in that rotation.
James grazes about 150 cow-calf pairs, plus an additional 80 heifers are
bred for herd replacement and breeding stock sales.
The cows are pastured in groups and are rotationally grazed on several
different farm locations. James is a strong believer in a good
rotational grazing system and states, "Keep it simple and achievable.
By doing so, you will accomplish successful results. Fresh clean water
is also of utmost importance, so fenced corridors have been constructed
to protect the water source and provide restricted access to quality
water close to each paddock."
As James says, "We recognize the responsibilities we have as food
producers and ambassadors for agriculture, especially the importance of
demonstrating good land stewardship to our urban neighbours who form an
integral part of our local community."
Gerrit Van Keulen, Sales Manager with MAPLESEED, comments that the
pasture management program being utilized on Silver Springs Farms is a
model that not only makes greater use of pasture resources, but is also
another good example of positive and sustainable environmental
Ray Robertson, Manager of the Ontario Forage Council, said that as
producers try to cope with the challenging times, the practical
techniques being followed by the McKinlays are great examples that can
help many producers maximize their net returns.
The deadline for applications for the 2012 Ontario Pasture Award is November
For details, call the Ontario Forage Council at 1-877-892-8663 or visit
either the Ontario Forage Council's Web site at www.ontarioforagecouncil.com or the Ontario Cattlemen's Association Web site at www.cattle.guelph.on.ca .
SOURCE Ontario Cattlemen's Association
For further information:
James McKinlay, Ravenna, Ontario, 1-519-599-6236
Ray Robertson, Ontario Forage Council, 1-877-892-8663
Gerrit Van Keulen, MAPLESEED, 1-519-281-0032
LeaAnne Hodgins, Ontario Cattlemen's Association, 1-519-824-0334