Thursday, June 8, 2017

THE GOSSIP - JR Smith's story, study on low-income seniors and agricultural certification

STUDY: LOW-INCOME SENIORS MIGHT NOT ACCESS ELECTRONIC LABELS OF GMO PRODUCTS - An Ohio State University survey shows that some seniors and low-income individuals may have trouble accessing electronic product codes on food labels indicating the item contains genetically modified ingredients.

The vast majority in the survey (93.8 percent) stated they could get to the information from labels even if it were in electronic form. But among those 65 or older and earning less than $15,000 a year, 25 percent said that, while shopping, they do not have a smartphone with wireless internet and could not make phone calls. And not having internet or a phone in a store could prevent them from seeing the online information linked to the electronic product code on the product label.

“Disclosure by electronic means has promise, but there needs to be some concern about how to reach particular demographic groups that are still on the other side of the digital divide,” said Brian Roe, a professor of agricultural economics in Ohio State’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences. Roe led the study with Craig Berning, a recent department graduate.

Most who responded to the survey (80.9 percent) stated they were interested in knowing if their food contained genetically modified ingredients. However, only 63.9 percent of respondents said they are “somewhat likely” or “very likely” to use their smartphone or in-store scanner methods to find out.

GET YOUR OHIO AGRICULTURAL FERTILIZER APPLICATOR CERTIFICATION - A June 22 field day is designed to help answer questions about applying fertilizer, and after the event, participants can obtain the required state certification for anyone who applies fertilizer, other than manure, to more than 50 acres.

The event will feature speakers Lee Beers and Rory Lewandowski, Ohio State University Extension educators, who will discuss soil fertility and using fertilizer to improve crop production.

Eric Barrett, an OSU Extension educator, will train participants on fertilizer application safety and best management practices.

OSU Extension is the outreach arm of the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University.

This program will be held June 22 from 10 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. at Terry Baird Farms, 9471 Berlin Station Road, in Canfield.

Registration is $5 per person, which covers the cost of lunch and handouts. Registration information can be found at, or by calling 330-533-5538.

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