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Tuesday, October 30, 2018

Flat Aggie’s A-Maize-ing AgVenture


This month I visited Etsch Farms Corn Maze in Monroe Township, New Jersey. Each fall since 2006,
the farmers here take their hay, straw and feed corn farm and turn it into an Agri-Tourism site. That
means people from all over can come to the farm and learn about corn by walking in the corn field.







Each guest at the farm can take a hayride, walk through 8 acres of corn trails, ride the corn train and meet Nugget, the Holstein steer who lives there. There’s also a barn shop, a pumpkin patch and a bakery with apple cider donuts.     












































This 4th generation farm also welcomes 3rd graders to the tractor barn where the students hear how corn is planted and harvested, how animals are useful to a farmer and who makes chocolate milk (people!)






I also went to a Farm Bureau meeting. Mr. Etsch is the Treasurer of New Jersey Farm Bureau, where each month a Director from each of NJ’s 21 counties meet to set policy that will help farmers. Right now they are discussing the deer problem in the state and are using a drone at night with infrared technology to see where the animals live. They plan to move the deer away from the fields where the crops are grown to help the grain farmers make a living on the land.    





The farmers would like you to know that Agriculture is alive and well in New Jersey, even though it is a very
densly populated state. With 9.03 million people in the state and both New York and Philadelphia located just
outside the borders, a lot of people who live there commute to the work and only have time on the weekends to
visit farms. There are many farmer’s markets where people can shop locally to buy their fruits, vegetables and
plants.

But there is nothing like visiting the farm in person. I’m so glad I got to stay on the farm for the month of
September while the Corn Maze was open. Visit a farm near you for your hayride to the pumpkin patch!