2017 Cooperator of the Year
As the owner of H&V Farms in Millsboro in the Chesapeake Bay Watershed, Chip Baker has made a long-term commitment to improving water quality, using innovative methods of enhancing soil health, planting cover crops, and protecting the environment. Baker farms 621 acres of corn and soybeans and has a 50,000-broiler operation. His farm has been never-till for 25 years, and he plants multispecies blends of cover crops on all of his acres, with the goal of having all his ground covered all year round. Baker participates in the Conservation Stewardship Program for nutrient management, irrigation water management, conservation tillage, and pest management, as well as the District’s Air Seeder Pilot Program. Because of Baker’s innovation and interest in improving soil health and promoting soil health practices with his peers, he became a Delaware Soil Health Champion, joining a large national network of more than 200 soil health champions. In 2016, Baker hosted and shared his experience with about 115 people for an Air Seeder Demonstration/Soil Health Field Day at his farm. He also serves on the District’s Soil Health Advisory Committee, providing guidance and direction to the District in regards to soil health outreach and education efforts.
-Joel Wharton, left, SCD chairman, presents Vernon “Chip” Baker Jr., of Millsboro, with the 2017 Cooperator of the Year award at the 2019 Cooperators’ dinner held in Bridgeville, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019.
-Vernon “Chip” Baker Jr., of Millsboro, was humbled after receiving the 2017 Cooperator of the Year award at the 2019 Cooperators’ dinner held in Bridgeville, Wednesday, Dec. 4, 2019.
-Jenifer Nelson, left, executive director of the Delaware Association of Conservation Districts, moderates the large-scale farmer panel discussion while Vernon “Chip” Baker of Millsboro, Del., James “Jay” Baxter, of Georgetown, Del., both NACD Soil Health Champions, Matt Fry of Chestertown, Md. and Trey Hill of Rock Hall, Md. answer questions regarding soil health, challenges, successes and lessons learned on Day Two of the Delmarva Soil Summit on Thursday, Feb. 27, 2020, in Georgetown, Del.
-D. Lyle Jarrett of Quantico, Md., Vernon “Chip” Baker of Millsboro, Richard Carlisle of Bridgeville and Blaine Hitchens of Laurel, intently listen to speakers Hans Kok and Loran Steinlage at the caffeine and cover crop breakfast at Rudy’s Family Diner in Harrington on Thursday, Jan. 16, 2020. The event gave farmers an opportunity to discuss soil health topics with industry experts.
-NACD Soil Health Champions from Sussex County, Del. attend the cover crop workshop are, from left, James “Jay” H. Baxter IV of Georgetown, Vernon “Chip” Baker Jr. of Millsboro, Brad Ritter of Nassau, Guy Phillips of Georgetown, Steve Groff, owner of Cover Crop Coaching, and Blaine Hitchens of Laurel at the Bridgeville Volunteer Fire Company on Wednesday, Dec. 11, 2019.
Delmarva Farmer • March 12, 2020 • Farmers urged to be creative, consider other methods
Cape Gazette • Dec. 26, 2019 • Agriculturists attend cover crop workshop
Delmarva Farmer • June 21, 2019 • Roadtrip: Building a soil health legacy for the land (Keeping the Farm)
Cape Gazette • Dec. 27, 2018 • Farm bureau recognizes Baker family of Millsboro
Delmarva Farmer • Oct. 12, 2018 • SCFB lauds Baker family, Kenton
Outdoor Delaware • Fall 2013 • Our Connection to Soil