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Perspectives

Extension-trained volunteers assist local apple industry

Marvin Owings with Jean Marie Saltz at the apple test orchard

When Jean Marie Saltz decided to take over her family’s sixth-generation apple orchard in Henderson County, she saw it as a way to provide local people with fresh local produce while allowing herself to get back to something she had loved since childhood. From Cooperative Extension's Master Pomology volunteer course, she gained the knowledge she needed to run the operation. The only problem was that her father and grandfather, who’d guided the farming operation for decades, had passed away. Who, she wondered, could she turn to for answers to all her questions about farming?

Business and Busy-ness: Brevard couple manage part-time farm with full-time careers in agriculture

Birttany Whitmire and Andy VonCanon

Andy VonCanon and Brittany Whitmire call their family farm near Brevard “Busy Bee” – and what a fitting name it is. The two keep bees and raise cattle, turkeys and forage crops, all the while holding busy off-farm careers in agriculture. He’s a College of Agriculture and Life Sciences alumnus who teaches high school agriculture, and she’s the new dairy economist with the North Carolina Cooperative Extension Service at NC State.

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