Horse lovers work hard to promote equine agriculture industry in county

CHAMPAIGN — Nancy Strunk of Champaign remembers purchasing her favorite horse more than 20 years ago.

What a difference a year makes for agriculture

One short year ago, we had corn in the ground by today and planters were rolling, a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

UI farmland research center launches

URBANA — The need for more information on farmland economics drove financial services firm TIAA-CREF to help fund a new research center at the University of Illinois, a company spokeswoman said.

The TIAA-CREF Center for Farmland Research was formally launched Wednesday at the UI, thanks to a pledge that reportedly totaled $5 million.

Agriculture news roundup: UI-led consortium to help with Iraq's extension system

URBANA — A consortium led by the University of Illinois College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences has embarked on a project to help modernize and strengthen Iraq's agricultural extension system.

The UI's role will be to improve the delivery of extension services and develop the capacity of farmers and extension partners, according to a release from the college.

Farm's sale price billed as local record

URBANA — A 173-acre farm east of Urbana sold for $15,375 per acre Wednesday in a transaction that was billed as a new record for the area.

Agriculture roundup: Premier aims to expand fuels division

CHAMPAIGN — Premier Cooperative plans to expand its fuel division this year, with the aim of adding a bulk fuel facility at its Apex location west of Tolono, general manager Roger Miller said.

The cooperative currently operates a bulk fuel facility in the Ford County community of Elliott.

Prosperity Gardens program gets grant

CHAMPAIGN — The American Cancer Society has awarded the Prosperity Gardens program in Champaign an $8,850 grant to expand its work with students in an alternative education program.

The grant was one of 30 youth obesity prevention community grants totaling $360,000 to nonprofit organizations across the state.

Agriculture roundup: Three 'Farm to Fork' dinners set for this year

SULLIVAN — A group of businesses in the Sullivan area is sponsoring a series of dinners featuring locally grown foods.

The "Farm to Fork" dinner series includes five-course meals on:

— Feb. 28 at the Factory Arts Studio in Sullivan.

— June 13 at the Great Pumpkin Patch southwest of Arthur.

— Sept. 21 on stage at The Little Theatre on the Square in Sullivan.

TIAA-CREF to give $5 million to help create farmland-research center

URBANA — With a $5 million pledge from financial services company TIAA-CREF, the University of Illinois plans to establish a center for farmland research on campus.

On the Town: Champaign County Farm Bureau

Images from  Champaign County Farm Bureau’s 101st annual dinner meeting Jan. 21 at the Holiday Inn in Urbana, concluding a yearlong celebration of the organization’s 100th anniversary.