R & B FarmOwner: Richard Divelbiss
8929 Olmstead Rd.
Hubbardston, MI 48845
Ionia and clinton County
P.O. Box 307
Palo, MI 48870
daytime phone: (989) 637-4149
evening phone: same
Application Date: 2015-07-23
- Please briefly tell us why you are applying to be part of the Certified Naturally Grown program: *
- We operate and generally believe in holistic, sustainable farm practices. Our primary customers want a natural product that has been humanely raised and CNG certification would be confirmation of this.
- Are you currently third party Certified for your livestock operation by any other organization (Organic, Biodynamic, etc)? *
- If yes, please note which certification and agency: *
- Michigan Agriculture Environmental Assurance Program: Livestock Production and Crop Production certifications. A joint program of the Michigan Department of Agriculture and Rural Development, the USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service, et al.
- Have you ever been certified in the past? *
- Have you ever been denied certification? *
- How did you hear about Certified Naturally Grown? *
- Internet search of producers.
- Your application will be reviewed AFTER we receive a valid Feed Declaration for your farm. We ask you to submit the Feed Declaration within ONE MONTH to ensure your application isn't denied. Check this box to indicate you understand this. *
General Farm Information
- Farm Acreage you want listed as Certified Naturally GrownTM:
- Total farm acreage to be used for pasture and feed crops *
- Number of above acres that you own: *
- Number of above acres that you lease: *
- Do you have other acreage in "conventional" agricultural systems? *
- General Listed Acreage Breakdown
- Other (please specify below):
- If indicated, please specify how 'other' acres are used
- Herd size is managed so that there is a surplus of pasture growth during the May/June peak of vegetative growth. This surplus is harvested as dry hay and stockpiled for feeding during January, February and March. Thus, the 22 acres listed as "other" are actually part of the 32 total acres cropped and managed as pasture.
- Please check all items you grow and would like to market as Certified Naturally GrownTM (to certify produce, please complete the separate produce application) *
- Please Specify Any Other Items:
- Please check all markets you grow for (this will be displayed on your farm profile to help potential buyers find you). *
- Please Specify Other Markets:
- R & B Farm serves two primary markets. The largest is individual end-user sales of vacuum packaged freezer beef. We also sell live cattle as breeding stock to other Belted Galloway herd owners.
Farmland Management and Practices
- Primary Tillage System: *
- Pasture species renewal using no-till and low-till seeding of grasses and frost seeding and low-till seeding of legumes and other small seeded plants.
- Do you use Cover Crops? *
- Do you use Compost? *
- Do you use Manure? *
- Please note general sources of manure: *
- Only manure source is the herd. We avoid manure concentration through rotational grazing and by using an annual rotation of winter feeding paddock.
- Please list application rates. Give a specific amount or range (for example: one to two tons per acre, ten wheelbarrow loads per 1,000 square feet, or 1-2 inches deep). Do not answer "varies". *
- Please list any other brought in fertility sources that you use (specific rock powders, lime, soybean / alfalfa meal, specific purchased pre-mixes, etc)and how often it's used. If you indicate a name brand product, please also specify the ingredient/s.
- lime per biennial soil test. The lime provider we contract with uses HiCal ag lime and will occasionally recommend dolomitic applications based on soil test results. Our last application was in 2007 when our pastures were being converted from fallow grassland to pasture blends adapted to rotational grazing in Michigan. HiCal ag lime was used. Based on the last soil tests it is likely we will need to apply lime again in 2015 or 2016. We will use the same product.
- Have any chemical fertilizers been applied to the fields you are seeking Certification for in the last three years (36 months)? *
- Have any non-acceptable pesticides and/or herbicides been applied to these fields in the last 3 years? *
- Describe your primary weed problems and methods of control. If you indicate a name brand product, please also specify the ingredient(s), what kind of product it is (a soap, microbial, oil, a botanical...), and how often it's used. *
- Canada thistle and wild raspberry. Control by mowing, mob grazing, and propane torch (thistle).
- Describe your primary plant pest problems and methods of control. If you indicate a name brand product, please also specify the ingredient/s, what kind of product it is (a soap, microbial, oil, a botanical...), and how often it's used. *
- None at a high enough level to warrant control programs.
- Please list the water source you use for crop irrigation. If source is public river, pond or lake, please note the name: *
- No irrigation.
- Are there any known contaminants in the irrigation water? *
Livestock Management and Practices
- Please list all livestock for which you seek certification by type/breed, and indicate how many of each are on the farm today (for example: belted galloways - 20, nubian goats - 5, orpington chickens - 7, frizzle chickens - 3) For animals that have not yet been stocked for the season (e.g. poultry or piglets) please estimate how many you expect to have on farm during the upcoming season. Only list livestock that are (or will be) managed according to CNG standards. *
- 21 Belted Galloways
- I affirm that all livestock listed on this application are raised according to Certified Naturally Grown standards. I further affirm that I will not represent ANY livestock products as Certified Naturally Grown if they have not been raised according to the standards required by Certified Naturally Grown. Any livestock treated with antibiotics or other prohibited substances will be quarantined and sold separately. All livestock are fed feed grown according to CNG standards - without synthetic fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides, and free of any genetically modified grains (GMOs). *
- Have all the livestock been raised according to CNG standards since the last third of gestation or since hatching? *
- Give brief details of your rotation practice for each type and/or group of livestock. (E.g. heifers strip grazing behind electric fence moved daily, 28 day rotation, poultry rotated weekly - 3 pens.) *
- Rotational grazing on 24 paddocks to ideally maintain a forage height between 6 inches and 18 inches, with variations for hay production and winter feeding of stockpiled hay.
- Do the animals listed above include cows, goats, sheep or other ruminants? *
- Do your ruminant livestock obtain at least 30% of their dry matter intake from grazed forage during the growing season? *
- Do the animals listed above include poultry? *
- Do your livestock spend most of their time on pasture during the growing season? *
- Is all feed grown according to Certified Naturally Grown standards (without synthetic fertilizers, pesticides or post-harvest fungal treatments)? *
- For all livestock you seek to certify, please provide more information about the feed. Is it grown locally for you? Purchased in bulk at a mill? Bagged at the feed store? Is it Certified Organic? What brand, if any? *
- Do you buy in some feed? *
- Describe your primary livestock pest problems AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual pest challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
- Flies are primary insect problem. Management by rotational grazing and trapping at animal choke points (water sources, shade areas, sleep/rumination areas).
- Describe your primary livestock disease problems AND methods of control. Do not answer "none". You MUST indicate either actual disease challenges and/or LIKELY challenges, and you must ALSO indicate how you manage (or would manage) them. If you indicate a product, also specify how often it's used. *
- No current disease challenges. Controls used would include: isolation of new animals, vaccination and medical treatment as recommended by veterinarian. So far, we have been lucky and have only had to provide antibiotic treatment, in bolus form for retained placental material, in one of our brood cows. If antibiotic treatment of stock were necessary, we would move the calf off the farm post-weaning and notify buyers that the animal was not CNG.
- Provide details of all livestock owned by you, or grazed on your land, that are treated and quarantined on your property *
- no current animals under quarantine or treatment
Seeds and Buffers
- Do you purchase or grow using any Genetically Modified seeds? *
- Do you use any chemically treated seeds in your operation? *
- Chemical/Spray Drift and Buffers:
- Is there any likelihood of Chemical/Spray drift contamination of your fields? *
- Please state the source (conventional farm field, golf course, etc.) and any details you can provide (type of pesticide, fertilizer, herbicide used, and/or what used for.) *
- Conventional farm field. Broadcast lime. No broadcast/sprayed fertilizers. Sprayed use of glyphosate - with boom sprayers.
- Do you have an adequate buffer to protect yourself from potential contamination? *
- Please describe your buffer. Be specific. On all sides, how far is it from your livestock pasture to the next closest use (i.e. road, conventional crop, residential yard)? Specify what is grown on neighboring land in agricultural use. For example: To the north and east, a wooded area of at least 100 yards separates us from the neighbor's corn fields, to the south is a fallow field at least 100 yards deep separating us from a blueberry farm, and to the west about 60 feet separates our crops from a field where conventional corn and soybeans are grown. *
- North Boundary -- 10 feet to wheat, soybean, corn rotation (abutting 150' wide paddocks not used for 4 to 6 weeks after application of Roundup.) About 200 ft. of the northern boundary is protected by mature trees. Prevailing wind patterns (generally west to east with a tendency to the north) mean that the northern boundary of the farm would be least likely to experience ag chemical spray drift. East Boundary -- 40 feet to county road right-of-way (drainage toward road) and 100 feet to wheat, soybean, corn rotation. South Boundary -- 15 feet to wheat, soybean, corn rotation (abutting 100" wide paddocks are not used until October, or later, each year). West boundary -- Wooded. Closest distance to conventional agricultural crop land is approx, 400 feet. TOPOGRAPHY: Our farm includes the highest elevation in the surrounding area. Drainage is away from our property into the Prairie Creek/Maple River watershed. WIND PATTERNS: Normal frontal passages in south/central Michigan are generally west to east with a tendency to the north. Rotation of the high and low pressure systems result in a northwest flow during passage of a low front and a southwest flow during the subsequent high pressure. Winds with an easterly component are the least frequent. Considering the above, the northern boundary of the farm would be least likely to experience ag chemical spray drift.
- Please indicate your agreement with the following statements by checking the boxes.
- I will not label, or in any way lead consumers to believe that livestock not raised in accord with CNG standards is Certified Naturally GrownTM. *
- I understand that I have to complete at least one (and hopefully more) Certification Inspection(s) of another ranch or farm in my area each year, and that the inspection will NOT be of the same rancher or farmer that inspected me. *
- I have reviewed the Certified Naturally Grown livestock certification standards, I understand them, and I will abide by them. I understand that if I have any questions I may contact CNG for clarification. *
- You may use this space to tell us anything else you think we should know about your farm: