Local Agriculture Events in Northeastern Massachusetts

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Chris's Farm Stand
436 Salem Street Haverhill MA 01835
(978) 994-4315
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Northeast Harvest Agricultural Conference

April 11, 2018 @ 8:30 am - 3:00 pm


8:30 – Registration

9:00 – 9:50 – Laurie A. Rocco

“Worker Protection Standards”

The presentation will review the new 2018 Worker Protection Standards (WPS) along with what to expect when having an audit inspection, fit test, and respirator requirements.

Laurie Rocco is an Inspector of Pesticides for the Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources and a Public Fire and Life Safety Educator for the Palmer Fire Department.


9:50 – 10:25 – Troy Scarbrough


The presentation is a topic on farmer onboarding. CropLocal is a company focused on increasing access to locally grown food through the use of technology.

Troy Scarbrough & Mark Henderson are co-founders of CropLocal. Troy provides experience in helping small to medium size companies market their business and engage communities for new technology adoption while Mark provides an extensive background as a software engineer and eCommerce developer.


                  10:25 – 11:00 – Carry Shulock-Sexton

“Backyard Poultry”

The presentation will include the aspect of backyard poultry, including the necessary care, shelter, and feed of your flock. Over the past few years, we have seen a steady increase in the number of families raising small flocks of chickens. Come and learn more about raising chickens and the like.

Carry Shulock-Sexton is the MDAR’s Animal Disease Traceability Coordinator.


11:00-11:10 BREAK


11:10 – 12:00 – George Hamilton

“Sweet Corn Infestation – Pumpkin and Squash Infestation – Stink Bug”

The presentation will include insect pests for sweet corn, pumpkin, and squash. Insect pests that threaten sweet corn and vegetables will be discussed along with the biology and how to recognize the damage.

There will be discussion on the brown marmorated stink bug and how it is a new serious pest to the fruit/vegetable industry in New England. An integrated approach will include the appropriate materials, pest monitoring and cultural management. IPM trapping counts in Connecticut and New Hampshire will be reported.

George Hamilton is the Extension Educator for Agricultural Resources at the University of New Hampshire. He joined the UNH Cooperative Extension in 1989. He has direct responsibilities for working with commercial farm operations in the areas of vegetables, fruit, field crops, livestock and farm business management. He received both his Bachelor of Science Degree and Master of Science Degree in Agricultural Education from The Pennsylvania State University.


12:00 – 12:30 – LUNCH


12:30 – 1:00 – Tom Smiarowski

“Crop Insurance and Risk Management”

The presentation will include the risk management-crop insurance insurance education program offered by UMass Extension in partnership with the USDA Risk Management Agency. The program is focused toward Massachusetts agricultural & aquaculture producers.

Tom Smiarowski is the UMass Extension Risk Management Specialist.


1:00 – 3:00 – Kim Skrym

“Honey Bees and Pesticides”

This presentation will provide a brief background of honey bee biology, beekeeping and the status of national and local populations. Basic aspects of honey bee health will be discussed as it related to pest management practices. In addition to these topics, the role of pesticides in the honey bee health crisis will be discussed, and The MDAR Apiary Program goals and services will also be shared 

Kim Skrym, Ph.D. serves as the Chief Apiary Inspector and Program Coordinator for the MDAR Apiary Program Team since August 2015. She has worked to revitalize the program to be more inclusive in meeting the needs of stakeholder groups by promoting practices that ensure honey bee health in the Commonwealth. Kim has been working with bees, beekeepers and the public for the past 12 years either as a researcher or extension educator in private, academic and government organizations. She has authored and co-authored numerous articles and extension publications related to various aspects of bee biology, behavior and health.


Wrap Up with James O’Brien

Northeast Harvest Executive Director 

James P. O’Brien is the Executive Director of Northeast Harvest, a buy local organization which serves Essex and Middlesex counties. James is also currently General Manager of the Topsfield Fair for the past 11 years, the oldest continuously operating county fair in America – 200th Anniversary in 2018. He is also a Board Member of the Essex County Farm Bureau, MA Fruit Growers, Essex County Fruit Growers, Essex National Heritage Commission, North of Boston Visitors Bureau Board, IAFE Finance Board, Topsfield Agricultural Commission, District Vice-Chairman and Vice President of Development and Director of Finance for the Spirit of Adventure. He holds a degree in Forestry and Business Management from the University of Maine at Orono, and is a Certified Fair Executive with a degree in Fair Management from the IAFE (International Association of Fairs and Expositions).


April 11, 2018
8:30 am - 3:00 pm


Topsfield Fairgrounds, 207 Boston Street, Topsfield MA, 01983
207 Boston Street
Topsfield, MA 01983 United States
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