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On their farm in Port Republic, Va., Glenn and Sherri, along with their daughters, Cara and Kelsie, their parents, brothers and extended family, farm nearly 600 acres of land in Port Republic, Virginia. The farm is also home to turkeys, beef cattle and a 140-head dairy.
Today, the Rodes raise approximately 280,000 turkeys a year for Cargill Turkey Production in their five poultry houses.
From an environmental perspective, litter management has been an area in which Riverhill Farms continuously strives for improvements.
Innovative thinking and execution is common at Riverhill Farms.
One example of this is how the farm controls the environment inside the turkey houses. The Rodes utilize poultry litter and other combustible material as a fuel source in a biomass burner that generates hot water. The
hot water flows through pipes in the floor of the turkey houses to provide radiant heat that keeps the turkeys warm during the winter months.
Glenn’s passion for science and being eco-friendly pushed this innovative spirit to the limit with the development of a small on-farm operation that produces
biodiesel from canola, soybeans and other crops grown on their farm.
On the farm, the Rodes actively advocate and educate to help consumers to understand practices used in agriculture that protect and enhance the environment.
The Rodes’ community outreach and inventive spirit hasn’t gone unnoticed. Discovery Channel and various local media outlets have featured Riverhill Farm’s effort to implement farm-scale energy projects and growing canola and other crops specifically to produce bio-diesel. Glenn also manages a YouTube channel that shares instructional videos on farming practices and topics on alternative energy that currently has more than 2 million views
Farm life is hard. However, it is a challenge that Glenn and his family welcome. The Rodes believe that implementing great environmental stewardship practices and discovering new ways to power the farm through alternative fuels and energy is exceptionally important for the success of future generations of agriculturists.
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