NC Pork Report - Spring 2015 - (Page 26)

Awards Ray Simmons Named Environmental Steward Winner T he NC Pork Council has recognized a Sampson County farmer, Ray Simmons, with its Environmental Steward Award for his operation's outstanding environmental practices. Simmons was honored during the Council's 59th annual N.C. Pork Conference and annual awards breakfast. Simmons received the award because of his environmental management efforts on the Simmons Hog Farm, a feeder-tofinish swine farm located near Clinton. Simmons has approximately 3,000 animals there and is currently operating under contract with Murphy-Brown LLC. The Simmons farm utilizes a singlecell anaerobic treatment lagoon to treat and store manure prior to land application. Land application is accomplished through a custom irrigation system calibrated bi-annually to ensure manure is applied within the guidelines of the farm's Certified Nutrient Management Plan and irrigation design. The treated manure is used as a fertilizer source for approximately 20 acres of coastal Bermuda and summer and winter annuals. To ensure the efficient and effective removal of nutrients from the land application fields, the Bermuda is grazed and cut for hay. All grazing is accomplished through strict rotational grazing practices that insure full utilization of forages by the cattle pastured at the facility. Through rotational grazing and haying, the potential for buildup of phosphorous and metals in the soil is minimized. The system used on this farm is a continuous grass system, limiting the potential for soil erosion. In addition, the rotational grazing of pastures reduces cattle trafficking and minimizes soil loss. Small grain overseeds are planted each year during winter months to provide additional beneficial soil coverage. Buffers are maintained around all fields to capture any potential soil erosion. While air quality has not been an issue for this farm, various practices are used to reduce odors and improve the air quality surrounding the farm. Feed spills are cleaned up immediately, and all feed tank pads are swept weekly. The farm and land application fields are naturally buffered with trees. In addition, trash and debris is removed from the lagoon and grounds weekly. Buffers are managed around all land application fields, and are only mowed once annually. These buffers provide habitat to the indigenous wildlife in the area. Wild turkey and deer are abundant on the property and a no-hunting policy is in effect on the farm at all times. There have been no environmental violations issued to the Simmons Hog Farm in its history. The NCPC Environmental Stewards program is similar to a national program; both the state and national programs focus on manure management, soil conservation, water conservation, wildlife habitat, air quality and public relations. 26 NC Pork Report * w w w .n c p o r k .o r g Simmons' award was presented by Curtis Barwick, a friend and member of the NCPC Environmental Stewardship Awards Committee. Barwick said of Simmons farm operation, "His farm is notable for the meticulous care; he just makes sure everything is right." The NCPC Environmental Steward Award is in place to annually recognize a N.C. pork producer who excels in onfarm environmental stewardship. The NCPC Environmental Stewards program is similar to a national program; both the state and national programs focus on manure management, soil conservation, water conservation, wildlife habitat, air quality and public relations. The awards program also allows industry leaders to promote environmental excellence among all pork producers and to make the public and lawmakers aware of the proactive measures that producers are already making to protect the environment.

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of NC Pork Report - Spring 2015

Message from the President: Opportunity, Challenges, Learning, Teamwork and Success
Industry News
Introducing the 2015 Board of Directors
2015 Pork Conference: Education, Networking, Fellowship and Fun
NCPC Names Bob Swain to Pork Industry Hall of Fame
Roddy Purser Named 2015 Pork All-American
Edward Dail Named 2015 Outstanding Pork Producer
Ray Simmons Named Environmental Steward Winner
Bacon Bash Brings Home the Bacon for NCPC PAC
2015 Student Internship Program
2015 North Carolina Pork Council Scholarship

NC Pork Report - Spring 2015