|December 16, 2015||Posted by Arlette under Agriculture, Cooking, Farms, In Stores, Produce, Recipes, Uncategorized|
What is the difference between green beans, snap beans and string beans? Actually, there is no difference at all. They are all the same. Green bean is an obvious term. And the word snap bean is often used because of the immature pods that snap when bent. The phrase string bean is derived from the […] continue reading
|November 12, 2015||Posted by Arlette under Agriculture, Cooking, Farms, Healthy Eating, Nutrition, Produce, Recipes, Uncategorized|
Of all the produce grown in Florida, squash is one of the few that is native to Florida and other areas of the United States. In fact, it is one of the oldest known crops–10,000 years by some estimates. And since squashes are gourds, they most likely served as containers or utensils because of their […] continue reading
|October 20, 2015||Posted by Arlette under Agriculture, Cooking, Events, FAPC, In Stores, Recipes, Seafood, Uncategorized|
The cool weather of fall provides some welcome relief from the muggy hot summers typical of Florida. It also offers the promise of so many enjoyable activities including football games, harvest festivals, camping trips and much more. In addition, the eagerly anticipated annual harvest of stone crab claws is another treat Floridians can add to […] continue reading
|October 6, 2015||Posted by Melissa under Agriculture, Education, Events, FAPC, Farms, Healthy Eating, Kids, Produce, Uncategorized|
“Fresh From Florida” member Sweetwater Organic Community Farm will celebrate this year’s grand opening of “Sweetwater Sundays” farmers market on Sunday, October 18. Now in its tenth year, the farmers market will run every Sunday, except for Easter Sunday, through May 2016 from noon to 4 p.m. Sweetwater Organic Community Farm is an urban organic […] continue reading
|September 23, 2015||Posted by Arlette under Agriculture, Education, Events, FAPC, Farms, Healthy Eating, Kids, News, Produce, Uncategorized, Wine|
Consumer demand for locally grown foods and agritourism activities continue to rise. According to the USDA’s 2012 Census of Agriculture, farmers’ markets in the United States have expanded by 180 percent since 2006, and on-farm agritourism events have increased by 24 percent since 2007. What is agritourism? The definition according to our Florida Statutes “means […] continue reading
|September 10, 2015||Posted by Arlette under Agriculture, Cattle, Cooking, Healthy Eating, In Stores, Nutrition, Produce, Recipes, Uncategorized|
It’s already September! But who says grilling season is over? It’s a perfect activity for this time of year, with football season already upon us. Many families enjoy grilling as a way to bring people outdoors during the fall season, when Florida weather can be ideal. And college students are big fans of tailgating parties […] continue reading
|August 13, 2015||Posted by Arlette under Agriculture, Cattle, Education, Farms, Kids, News, Uncategorized|
The Florida Agriculture Museum is pleased to announce an addition to their Cracker cattle herd with the birth of a handsome red bull calf. Florida Cracker cattle are a part of Florida’s living history, being descendents of the first European breeds of cattle to arrive in the Americas. The Florida Cracker cattle breed is still quite […] continue reading
The Florida Agriculture Museum is pleased to announce an addition to their Cracker cattle herd with the birth of a handsome red bull calf. Florida Cracker cattle are a part of Florida’s living history, being descendents of the first European breeds of cattle to arrive in the Americas. The Florida Cracker cattle breed is still quite rare, but prospects are bright, especially with the birth of this new baby.
In the early 1500s, Spanish explorer Juan Ponce De León brought horses, cattle, farm implements and seeds to what is now known as Florida, in an attempt to survive and establish colonies for the homeland of Spain. The descendents of the Spanish cattle from this period are now referred to as Florida Cracker cattle, a name they garnered because of the sound made by the cow whip cracking the air. As the Spanish colonized Florida and other parts of the Americas, they established low input, extensive cattle ranging systems typical of Spanish ranching. The Florida Cracker which developed under these conditions can also be called criollo cattle, a word referring to people and animals of Spanish descent.
Florida Cracker cattle are small. Cows weigh between 600 and 800 pounds and bulls weigh between 800 and 1,200 pounds. Being bred in a relatively hostile environment, Florida Cracker cattle are heat tolerant, long lived, and resistant to parasites and diseases. They remain productive on the low quality forage found on Florida’s grasslands and swamps.
It was not until the importation of Zebus from India and the development of the American Brahman breed in the 1900s, that the Florida Cracker had competition from other heat-tolerant cattle. The development of parasiticides and other medications allowed British and European breeds to survive in the South, which resulted in further diversification of Florida’s cattle industry. This influx of new breeds nearly caused the extinction of the Florida Cracker breed. However, through the efforts of a Florida Cracker cattle enthusiasts including the Florida Agriculture Museum and the Florida Cracker Cattle Association the breed has survived in its pure form.