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Top Story

Kathy Siler, Washtenaw County Farm Bureau



Friday Fun Fact: Say CHEESE!!

Did you ever wonder why many cheeses are yellow or orange when milk is white?

Cheese can be colored with a coloring agent called annatto. It’s a natural food coloring that comes from Annatto (also known as the Achiote Lipstick tree) grown in the tropical regions of Central and South America. When the tree flowers, it produces spiky looking pods, which house annatto seeds and a vibrant red pulp. After the pods are ground, they’re then turned into an extract or a powder, used for coloring foods and, where it’s also grown, for lipstick... Annatto has no flavor in small amounts, like when coloring foods.
Cheese Coloring

Washtenaw County Farm Bureau News

Kathy Siler, Washtenaw County Farm Bureau



Friday Fun Fact: Say CHEESE!!

Did you ever wonder why many cheeses are yellow or orange when milk is white?

Cheese can be colored with a coloring agent called annatto. It’s a natural food coloring that comes from Annatto (also known as the Achiote Lipstick tree) grown in the tropical regions of Central and South America. When the tree flowers, it produces spiky looking pods, which house annatto seeds and a vibrant red pulp. After the pods are ground, they’re then turned into an extract or a powder, used for coloring foods and, where it’s also grown, for lipstick... Annatto has no flavor in small amounts, like when coloring foods.
Cheese Coloring
TheSalinePost.com

Click Here - Read the original article!

Saline's community food pantry now has a cooler to store its dairy items.

Mamarow Farms and the Michigan Dairy Farmers donated a dairy cooler to Saline Area Social Service. They also donated $500 to Saline Area Social Service.

"This gift has already been valuable in helping us store many of our dairy foods, especially on hot days like today," said Anne Cummings, Executive Director of Saline Area Social Service.

Saline Area Social Service assists hundreds of low-income residents each week with a food pantry and other assistance.

People who need to use the food pantry, located at 224 W. Michigan Ave., can visit from 10 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. on Mondays, 10 a.m. to noon on Tuesdays and Wednesdays, and 10 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Thursdays.

You can support their efforts in several ways. Donate money by clicking here.

Saline Area Social Service is also accepting donations during those hours and from  10 a.m. to noon on Friday and 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. on Saturday. Each week, SASS updates its list of needs on its website.

Here are the priority needs this week:

  • Sliced Cheese – Individual slices
  • Pre-packaged lunchmeat
  • Spam
  • Canned Corned Beef Hash
  • Canned Beef Stew
  • Ramen Noodles
  • Tissues

To volunteer for SASS, click here or call Lynn Strach at 734-476-7831 or [email protected].

Kathy Siler, Project RED Committee, Washtenaw County Farm Bureau

And.... that’s “A Wrap” for our Virtual Project RED (Rural Education Days).

Although it was far from our traditional event, we are extremely grateful for your response during this challenging time. Huge thanks to everyone who liked, commented on or shared our posts or participated in any way to make our 30th Project RED a huge success!
We’re sharing a celebratory photo of Nancy Thelen and Lynda Horning with our 25th anniversary cake to which we’ve added a victorious 30 years banner!
We hope to see you “in person” in 2021!
Stay safe and healthy everyone!

#VirtualRED2020
Thank you to everyone!

State News

Michigan Farm Bureau (MFB) annually honors deserving members and individuals for their contributions toward supporting the state’s agriculture industry and furthering Farm Bureau’s values and member-driven policy.

Applications and nominations for the following awards are now being accepted:

Champions of Excellence

Champions of Excellence got a face-lift this year and now features only a single application for your county’s grassroots work.

The Involvement award winner will be determined from data compiled from county dashboards on July 1. Be sure your county project involvement is entered in iMIS by then!

The new Champions of Excellence application now includes criteria from the previous Leadership Development, Advocacy and Innovation applications. Complete it carefully to receive the recognition your county Farm Bureau deserves!

Submit an application for the 2020 Champions of Excellence Award (each county can submit two different project applications).

Applications are due July 1.

One winner per district, announced Aug. 16, will receive a $350 county grant and advance to compete at the state level. Announcement of the two state winners (one each in Excellence and Involvement) will be made at the 2021 MFB President’s Capital Summit and receive a $1,000 county grant each.

Presidential Volunteer of the Year

MFB President Carl Bednarski knows the value volunteers bring to the success of the organization and invites you to nominate a member for the Presidential Volunteer of the Year Award. You are encouraged to nominate a volunteer who has exhibited a commitment to a specific program or event in their local community and are instrumental to the success of that event or program.

Nominees should be regular members who have served throughout the entire year (Aug. 1, 2019 through July 31, 2020); and lead one or more county Farm Bureau projects; and recruited others to pitch in.

Nominations are due Aug. 3 and can be made with this online form.

Distinguished Service to Agriculture Award

The Distinguished Service to Agriculture award is MFB’s highest honor. Since 1956, this award has been presented to deserving individuals who have made exceptional contributions to Michigan agriculture.

Every past recipient has provided distinguished service to the state’s food and farm sector.

Nominations can be made online and must be received by July 1.

MFB staff contact: Justin Hein , 517-679-4781

From a Muskegon County dairy farm through life’s most daunting crises, the “Popcorn Lady” of MFB’s annual meeting passes her legacy onto the next generation.

Some county fair livestock shows are transitioning to online, virtual platforms this year.


With summer slowly creeping up, Farm Bureau members are adding county fairs to the long list of things COVID-19 has impacted — or just plain wrecked. Social distancing requirements, access to volunteers and technology, and remaining fiscally solvent are all factors county fair boards are struggling with as they consider their 2020 events.

Traditionally, many county Farm Bureaus have supported these annual summertime youth events through various opportunities including trophy sponsorships, hosting educational events for the community or serving as show and auction volunteers.

To date, a handful of counties have already made the difficult decision to cancel their fair, while others continue planning as best they can — in some cases moving to a virtual show format. As your county fair boards have these discussions, consider reaching out to your fair coordinator or fair board president to ask how your county Farm Bureau might be able to help.

Some ideas:

  • Ordering and donating COVID-19 Fairground Safety Signs throughout the fairgrounds to remind fairgoers of social distancing and related health considerations.
  • Assisting as a virtual showmanship class host or volunteering with a portion of the online auction system if your internet access is reliable and fast.
  • Volunteering to serve as a judge and waiving the usual judge’s fee. Fairs may not be able to rely on their regular revenue-generating activities and/or attendance may be down altogether. Looking for ways to offset their normal costs could be a huge help.

Given that nobody’s ever conducted a fair during a global pandemic — and many have not hosted virtual events — there could be needs never before considered. An open brainstorming session may be helpful.

Working directly with your county fair board is an opportunity to strengthen your partnership and allows the county Farm Bureau to meet a very real need within your community.

If your county Farm Bureau is meeting a need at the county fair, tell us about it! Contact Katie Eisenberger, MFB high school and collegiate programs specialist.

With summer slowly creeping up, Farm Bureau members are adding county fairs to the long list of things COVID-19 has impacted — or just plain wrecked. Social distancing requirements, access to volunteers and technology, and remaining fiscally solvent
Katie Eisenberger

In the good ol’ days, after a long day’s work one would secure his or her horse to a hitching post outside a local establishment or a neighbor’s house before heading inside to catch up on the latest issues of the world.

We may have traded in our original horsepower for one with four wheels — and we can now communicate with one another without being in the same space — but one thing never goes out of style: learning something new. And we’ve got something new to share!

Over the next six months, members will have the opportunity to listen in as a group of Michigan Farm Bureau public policy specialists and industry professionals discuss critical agricultural topics through a virtual, laid-back atmosphere. They will look at current situations within the topic area, what related policy or programs MFB provides, and what next steps may look like.

Encourage someone you know to register if they’re interested in:

  • Gaining more awareness of current agriculture issues
  • Better understanding grassroots policy development
  • Getting perspective straight from the horse’s mouth!

To watch the Hitching Post, register for each monthly event separately. Attendees will have the opportunity to submit questions to the group. If you’re unable to join, but still interested in the content, all events will be recorded and posted to the MFB YouTube Channel.

Here’s the schedule of Hitching Post conversations, who’s moderating each discussion, and a link for participating:

Each videocast begins at 7 p.m. and will last 30-40 minutes, depending on conversation and questions.

I’m helping coordinate these discussions alongside my awesome coworker, Emily Reinart, the grassroots policy outreach specialist in MFB’s public policy division.

“This will be an opportunity for members to join a circle of peers for a short time commitment and invest in learning about current topics in the industry, how Michigan agriculture is impacted and how they can be involved in a solution,” Emily said.

All Hitching Post conversations will take place online via Cisco Webex, a convenient and easy-to-use online meeting platform that works on almost any desktop, laptop, tablet or smart phone with a decent internet connection. Farm Bureau members can download it by clicking here.

MFB staff contacts: Katie Eisenberger (517-679-5444) and Emily Reinhart (517-679-5337)

Over the next six months, members will have the opportunity to listen in as a group of Michigan Farm Bureau public policy specialists and industry professionals discuss critical agricultural topics through a virtual, laid-back atmosphere. They will l

Opening your greenhouse and social distancing...

A set of COVID-19 safety posters designed specifically for use in and around Michigan greenhouses is available free of charge to Michigan Farm Bureau members finally opening their extremely seasonal businesses to customers and delivering their products in bulk to retailers.

The posters outline basic COVID-19 safety guidelines workers and customers should all practice as Michigan's substantial greenhouse sector resumes sales. 

English and Spanish versions are available in two sizes, 8½" x 11" and 11" x 17". The images are free to download from MFB's online COVID-19 resource clearinghouse. Printed and laminated versions are available for a small cost.

To download the free posters, visit: https://www.michfb.com/MI/Coronavirus/

To place an order for laminated posters through the MFB Print Shop, fill out the Greenhouse Safety Poster Order Form and email it to [email protected]. A minimum of five posters must be ordered.

To read the full article about the posters, visit: https://www.michfb.com/MI/News/Membership_and_Benefits/Greenhouse_safety_posters_free_to_FB_members/