Category Archives: Featured

10 May
Keitha Bennett is Helping to Shape the Next Generation of Agriculture

by TIM CRAIG From her office, Keitha Bennett gets one of best glimpses at the growth and future of Florida agriculture. As coordinator of the Agricultural Education Services and Technology (AEST) certification program, the Haines City native sits at the nexus of education and industry and is able to help shape both. Yet, her perspective

10 May
Scarlett Jackson is One Powerful Woman in Ag

by TERESA SCHIFFER For Scarlett Jackson, agriculture isn’t just a vocation, it’s a way of life. Jackson’s life has been intertwined with agriculture since her earliest days. She was raised on a farm and retains precious memories of that lifestyle. Nowadays she is devoted to helping support the next generation of agriculturists as they find

10 May
Florida Team Part of 2019 National Excellence in Teaching About Agriculture

by MATT COBBLE Photo courtesy of agclassroom.org When the National Agriculture in the Classroom Organization (NAITCO) announced the 2019 winners of their National Excellence in Teaching About Agriculture award, one winner stood out from the pack. A team of teachers from Millennia Gardens Elementary School in Orlando – Dawn Chehab, Joshua Garrett, John Martinez, Erica

10 May
Riding Equines at Crystal Beach Farms

by J.P. SMITH   What brought world travelers and water skiers, Rob and Carol Bemman, to settle in Polk County on Eagle Lake and establish a horse trail? Their journey to this place in time, is waft with reminiscent sights, smells, and sensory delight, of beautiful Cypress Gardens, where it is their memories that still

09 Apr
2019 Central Florida Ag Alliance Luncheon

Bringing Together Florida Agri-Business and Florida Law Enforcement to Protect the State’s Rural & Agricultural Communities by DAPHNE RENELUS We often hear quotes that emphasize the importance of coming together to accomplish a goal, but rarely do we make a conscious effort to really follow these quotes’ messages. When it comes to the value of

09 Apr
That’s a Lot of Beef

Florida Cattle & Livestock Industries Giving States Economy a Boost by TIM CRAIG Carlton Taylor, the president of the Polk County Cattlemen’s Association, leads a group of ranchers who impact the state economy in ways the general public may not readily see. Together with the state and the national association, Taylor wants to spread the

09 Apr
Putting On Horse Genes

A Look at Research Being Done to Understand Equine Genetics by MATT COBBLE Every living organism on this planet is built by a set of genes. Genes that people have been influencing (or, if you prefer, ‘encouraging strategic traits’) since Gregor Mendel first discovered them while hybridizing pea plants in the mid nineteenth century. And

09 Apr
Meet the New PCCA Sweetheart

Hannah Cline Ready for New Role to Fight for the Beef Industry by MARY TOOTHMAN Hannah Cline has her cowgirl boots on, a smile on her face, and her plans and goals set for 2019. The true-blue cowgirl is the Polk County Cattlemen’s Association’s new Sweetheart. The youngest child of Dan and Sheri Cline, she

18 Mar
Bringing GRAPEFRUIT Back

New Professor Looks to Help Florida Grapefruit Industry by TIM CRAIG   A new hire for the University of Florida’s Indian River Research and Education Center should have an impact on the state’s ailing grapefruit industry as part of her research.   Sandra Guzman, an assistant professor of agricultural and biological engineering, will lead the

15 Mar
2019 PCCA Trade Show & Ranch Rodeo

On Saturday, February 16, the Polk County Cattlemen’s Association held their annual Trade Show and Ranch Rode in partnership with the UF/IFAS Extension of Polk County. Held at the Bartow Horse Arena, this event featured various booths, local artists, and craftsmen. Additionally, attendees were treated to a spectacular rodeo while cheering on their favorite local