(BARN Media & CoAgNews Network – Briggsdale, CO) Deember 5th, 2013 - Joining me Inside the BARN on the Colorado Ag News Network for this month’s Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Radioline Report is RMFU President Kent Peppler of Mead, CO, discussing several topics including: the Farm Bill, the recent RMFU Convention and Peppler will also take a look back at 2013 and a look ahead at 2014 from his perspective for the RMFU…
To listen to the interview with RMFU President Kent Peppler, click the mp3 audio link below…
ARLINGTON, VA – A recent analysis by the Congressional Research Service (CRS) of the competing House and Senate farm bills shows that the Senate’s dairy program costs less than the House version, the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) said today, helping fortify the case for the Senate‘s dairy title as negotiations continue in the congressional farm bill committee.
The House farm bill’s dairy title is projected to cost $418 million above the baseline, according to the CRS report released in October, while the Senate dairy program costs $302 million more over the next ten years. [These figures are in Tables 4 and 5 of the report, starting on p. 22].
Incoming NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern said Tuesday that the CRS report – the first to compare the two competing farm bill versions that conferees are attempting to reconcile – buttresses the point that NMPF has been making about the need to couple margin insurance with a market stabilization program, as the Senate bill does, to achieve cost controls.
The more engagement members have, the more that can be achieved, Mulhern says
PHOENIX – The incoming president of the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) urged dairy farmers today to become more engaged in the organization and the policymaking process.
“We need your financial commitment, yes,” Chief Operating Officer Jim Mulhern told nearly 1,000 attendees at the organization’s annual meeting. “But even more importantly, we need your time and effort and engagement. The more engagement our members have … the more our organization can achieve for our members. It’s a virtuous circle.”
Mulhern will take over as NMPF president and CEO January 1, 2014, when long-time leader Jerry Kozak retires. The organization is the voice of more than 32,000 dairy producers in Washington.
“30 years ago,” Mulhern said, “NMPF, like many organizations, could be a neatly defined hierarchy, and be successful….But not anymore.” Today, he said, both NMPF and the entire dairy industry must be more engaged in the free and rapid flow of information.
“If there’s a message I can leave with you today, it’s that the future of NMPF is not a function of what I want … or any one leader,” he said. “Rather, the successful future of NMPF will be a function of the active engagement that our board, our delegates and, yes, our grassroots members, have in the organization and the industry.”
Chair of National Milk Producers Federation Speaks at Group’s Annual Meeting in Phoenix
PHOENIX – The head of the nation’s dairy farmer organization today blasted the dairy provisions in the pending House farm bill as costly to taxpayers, a bonanza for processors and not what’s needed to help farmers. The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF), the voice of more than 32,000 dairy farmers in Washington, is wrapping up its annual meeting at the Arizona Biltmore Hotel.
Speaking at the meeting, board chair Randy Mooney, of Rogersville, Missouri, said the House of Representatives was dangerously close to repeating the mistakes of the early 1980s, when the federal dairy safety net was “far too generous.”
In those days, Mooney said, “you had to work at it to lose money milking cows.” Farmers produced more milk than the market could absorb, letting Washington buy up the rest. “The USDA became the largest single customer that farmers had,” Mooney said. “We spent most of the rest of the ’80s paring down the structural surplus that was created because Congress wanted to help us…to a fault.”
Today, Mooney said, “we are in the dangerous position of repeating history because certain people in Congress are forgetting the lessons of the past.” The House, he said, has voted for a new subsidy for dairy farmers modeled on crop insurance but with no mechanism to limit costs when the economy slows down.
“At long last, the House and Senate are poised to finish their work on a final farm bill package. For America’s dairy farmers, this is no time for a game of congressional trick or treat. The final product must provide farmers real stability, and not be a costumed disguise that masks the serious problems that will result if the House dairy program were enacted.
“The Senate’s bipartisan Dairy Security Act is the only option that will provide help to farmers when they need it most, while also limiting taxpayers’ exposure through its market stabilization mechanism. It’s an important safety net to farmers when they need it, and not an underfunded liability to the government when the program is in operation.
“We commend the leadership of the House of Representatives for taking the next crucial step towards completing a new farm bill, and creating a new and better safety net for dairy farmers. With the naming of these House members, negotiations with the Senate can now proceed on a final farm bill package.
“NMPF will be working in the coming days to remind both the Senate and House conferees of the importance of a balanced and cost-effective dairy program. The Senate’s bipartisan Dairy Security Act is the only program designed to both help farmers when they need it most, while also limiting taxpayers’ liability through its market stabilization mechanism. Without the market stabilization program, farmers will continue to suffer prolonged periods of poor margins, while taxpayers will subsidize artificially-low milk prices.
“The Dairy Security Act protects farmers of all sizes, allows for growth, and keeps taxpayer costs in check. The alternative is an irresponsible budget-buster. We strongly encourage the agriculture conferees to support the dairy title language in the Senate farm bill, and to include its provisions in the final package.”
The National Milk Producers Federation, based in Arlington, VA, develops and carries out policies that advance the well-being of dairy producers and the cooperatives they own. The members of NMPF’s 30 cooperatives produce the majority of the U.S. milk supply, making NMPF the voice of more than 32,000 dairy producers on Capitol Hill and with government agencies. Visit www.nmpf.org for more information.
Updated Dairy Data Highlights Now Available from NMPF
ARLINGTON, VA – Need to know the nation’s top 10 milk-producing states? How about Class III milk prices by month going back eight years? Or perhaps you need the top 10 export markets for U.S. dairy products in 2012.
All that and more is available in the latest addition of Dairy Data Highlights from the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF). The handy, pocket-size booklet includes 53 tables and 19 graphs filled with national and state milk and dairy production data from the mid-1970s through 2012.
Dairy Data Highlights has been published annually by NMPF for more than 60 years. A must for anyone involved in milk production, it is available to NMPF member cooperatives and associate members for $7.50 a copy, or $5 for orders of more than 10 copies. For nonmembers, the cost is $10 for single copies or $7.50 for bulk orders. An order form is available on the NMPF website.
All aspects of milk and dairy products production are covered, as well as producer, wholesale and retail milk and dairy product prices; federal milk marketing orders; sales and consumption data for milk and dairy products, and comparative information for U.S. dairy imports and exports.
“Now that the House has passed its nutrition policy portion of the farm bill, the National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) urges House leaders to quickly appoint conferees who should, with their counterparts in the Senate, finish work on a new farm bill and get it passed into law. It’s harvest time outside of Washington; it needs to be on Capitol Hill as well.
For the nation’s dairy farmers, it is critical for agriculture leaders in the House and Senate to include in the 2013 farm bill the provisions of the Dairy Security Act, which has already been approved this year by both the House and Senate Agriculture committees.
The Dairy Security Act will provide dairy farmers with a cost-effective safety net, while protecting consumers and taxpayers at the same time. Dairy producers have been waiting two years to know the details of the federal dairy safety net. They need this information to make business decisions. Along with the rest of American agriculture, milk producers nationwide urge lawmakers to take this critical last step in the evolution of a better farm program.”
The National Milk Producers Federation, based in Arlington, VA, develops and carries out policies that advance the well-being of dairy producers and the cooperatives they own. The members of NMPF’s 30 cooperatives produce the majority of the U.S. milk supply, making NMPF the voice of more than 32,000 dairy producers on Capitol Hill and with government agencies. For more on NMPF’s activities, visit www.nmpf.org.
The first shot to be fired in the Civil War was fired by Confederates on Morris Island. Morris Island is an 840-acre uninhabited island in Charleston Harbor accessible only by boat. The island lies in the outer reaches of the harbor and was thus a strategic location in the Civil War.
Save the dates for the 2014 American Sheep Industry Association Convention being held in Charleston Jan. 22-25. More information is coming soon.
Oct. 8 Webinar: Reducing Labor at Lambing Time
Registration is now open for the Oct. 8 webinar entitled Reducing Labor at Lambing Time. The session will begin at 7 p.m. EDT and will be hosted by Jay Parsons, Ph.D., Colorado State University and Optimal Ag. Presenters Philip Berg and Mike Caskey of the Pipestone Lamb and Wool Program will lead discussions about labor-saving watering, feeding and bedding systems as well as present layouts of warm lambing barns and sheep flow options. To register, go to https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/7717993636852468993. A confirmation email will be sent confirming registration. This webinar is part of the American Sheep Industry Association’s “Grow Our Flock” initiative.
Meat Groups Fail In Attempt to Stop Implementation of COOL
A district court judge denied a motion that would have halted the implementation of a meat labeling rule issued by the U.S. government in order to comply with an adverse World Trade Organization decision on Wednesday. Read the rest of this entry »
The 14th Annual Conference and Washington Round Up is scheduled for Friday and Saturday, October 11-12, 2013 at the Embassy Suites, Colorado Springs. Register Now!The Annual Conference is held on the I-25 corridor in Pueblo or Colorado Springs each year to make it most accessible to our all our membership and to invited guests and speakers from around the State and from Washington, D.C. Embassy Suites, just off I-25, offers an attractive, affordable and easily accessible location for our meeting.
The 2013 event promises information on the issues we are all concerned about — marijuana, School Finance Act, the economy — to name a few. In addition, the 23 legislators representing a portion of the Action 22 territory have been invited to join us for lunch on Friday, October 11, to discuss potential legislation in 2014. Colorado’s congressional delegation will speak to us during lunch on Saturday, October 12.
Pollster Floyd Ciruli, School Finance Act, US Senator Udall, British Consul-General, Chemical Agent Destruction Pilot Plan (last of two sites in the country), Water Plan, School Common Core State Standards, Congressmen Gardner and Tipton — are among the speakers for the two day conference!
You may register via this email, on the websitewww.action22.org effective September 1, using the form below or by calling the Action 22 office at 1.888.799.1799. Mastercard, Visa and Discover Cards are accepted. Action 22 members may be invoiced if so desired.
WASHINGTON, D.C.—August 30, 2013— National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) President Earl Garber sent the following letter to Chairman of the House Committee on the Judiciary Bob Goodlatte supporting the Equal Access to Justice Act and the Government Litigation Savings Act:
“On behalf of the National Association of Conservation Districts (NACD) I am writing to support two pieces of legislation to increase transparency in litigation impacting conservation.
“The Open Book on Equal Access to Justice Act, H.R. 2919, introduced by Rep. Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) and Rep. Steve Cohen (D-TN) would reinstate tracking and reporting requirements of payments made under the Equal Access to Justice Act (EAJA). By requiring agencies to track payments to attorneys engaged in lawsuits affecting conservation, the legislation would add much-needed accountability to EAJA. It would also provide transparency by increasing public understanding of how taxpayer dollars are being spent on such litigation.
“NACD also supports the Government Litigation Savings Act (GLSA), H.R. 3037, introduced by Rep. Lummis earlier this month. GLSA would limit access to taxpayer funded reimbursements for suing the federal government under EAJA. GLSA would bring us closer to the intent of EAJA, which is to provide small non-profit, business, or individual interests with a means to sue the federal government by taking on a one-time challenge, not for litigious groups to use EAJA to fund repeated procedural lawsuits.
“We strongly believe that on-the-ground efforts and local decision-making—rather than litigation—is the best way to address environmental challenges and achieve positive results for our land, air, water and other natural resources.
“Both bills will bring us closer to the original intent of EAJA while matching the spirit of its intent. We thank you for your consideration.”
Both bills were introduced prior to the August recess, and we look forward to Congress’ return in early September to get back to work on these and other issues of importance to conservation, including the Farm Bill and Appropriations. Read the rest of this entry »
Wray, CO- To mark the week that convicted murderer Nathan Dunlap was to be put to death, Sen. Greg Brophy has launched a citizen petition calling for Governor Hickenlooper to rescind his stay of execution.
“Governor Hickenlooper went against the will of the people, misled voters on his death penalty stance and gave a heinous, violent criminal a chance to avoid his true penalty,” said Brophy. “The victimsʼ families and the citizens of Colorado deserve justice but Hickenlooper is standing in the way. Citizens deserve to be heard. I call on the Governor to rescind his stay of execution and I ask everyone who supports victim’s rights to send a loud message to the Governor this week.”
Greg Brophy is a husband, father and farmer from the town of Wray, in Northeast Colorado. In 2002, he was elected to serve as a State Representative. Senator Brophy has served in both the State House and State Senate and has built a long record of standing for individual liberties and standing against the overreach of government.
Submitted to BARN Media by: Pam Johnson, President, National Corn Growers Association
As NCGA president, I was very proud when we announced last week that NCGA had reached a record membership of more than 40,000 active members. This milestone is the result of a lot of hard work, and the work of many hands – our recruiters who reach out across their fields to their neighbors and friends, our state and national staff who implement so many important programs, and our grower-leaders who have led NCGA and its state affiliates.
There could not be a better time, or a more important time, to have these new members. For if there is anything we have learned, it’s that farmer voices are respected and followed. And now is the time for us to raise our voices, as we face two significant challenges in the weeks ahead.
First, there is the farm bill; or, rather, the lack of a farm bill. The currently extended 2008 farm bill expireson September 30 and Congress is significantly split on a future direction. With members of Congress back home this month and returning to the Capitol after Labor Day, we need to remind them again and again why a farm bill is important.
Many of us have representatives and senators who are on our side very vocal on the issue, and we need to thank them and challenge them to work with their friends in Congress to get more Yea votes on the farm bill.
August 19th, 2013- Governor Hickenlooper recently completed an incredibly quick tour through Eastern Colorado. The tour happened to coincide with his announcement that he is seeking re-election.
Senator Greg Brophy is pointing out that even during his visit to Eastern Colorado, Gov. Hickenlooper confirmed why 9 counties in Northeast Colorado are considering seceding from the state.
“Once again, Gov. Hickenlooper is showing his lack of leadership. His “TBD” style of governing doesn’t address the concerns of the citizens that are frustrated enough to leave our state. The Governor makes some quick stops around the area, but doesn’t take the time to meet with County Commissioners and try to solve the problem. This only proves the point that the Counties of Northeast Colorado make when they say they are being ignored.”.
FORT COLLINS - Colorado’s research universities are teaming up to fight hunger on the same day their football teams square off in the annual Rocky Mountain Showdown, set for 4 p.m. Sept. 1 at Sports Authority Field at Mile High.
“Tackle Hunger” will collect monetary donations from fans attending the annual game matching football teams from Colorado State University and the University of Colorado. Money collected will be divided between Feeding America food banks in Larimer and Boulder counties.
CSU President Tony Frank and CU Chancellor Phil DiStefano issued a joint statement supporting the new initiative: “The two universities often collaborate on research and other initiatives that benefit the entire state. The ‘Tackle Hunger’ challenge is yet another example of the many ways that higher education institutions in Colorado support our communities.”
Volunteers from the Food Bank for Larimer County in Fort Collins and Community Food Share in Louisville, which serves Boulder and Broomfield counties, will collect cash donations from tailgating fans prior to the game. Volunteers at the stadium gates will be equipped to accept cash and credit card donations.
(BARN Media & CoAgNews Network – Briggsdale, CO) August 8th, 2013 - Joining me Inside the BARN on the Colorado Ag News Network for this month’s Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Radioline Report is RMFU President Kent Peppler of Mead, CO, discussing several topics including: the Farm Bill, Immigration Reform, Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) lawsuit, the USDA issuing the 2013 Final Rule on the Renewable Fuels Standard, he 141st CO FFA State Fair and much more…
To listen to the interview with RMFU President Kent Peppler, click the mp3 audio link below…
The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) and the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) applauded U.S. Vice President Joe Biden’s remarks during a speech yesterday in India calling for expanded trade between India and the United States. The vice president also pointed to the need to negotiate and work through barriers to market access, among other trade priorities.
“For far too long, a wide range of U.S. dairy products have been effectively locked out of the Indian market without sound scientific justification,” said Tom Suber, president of USDEC. “U.S. dairy products are sold in over 100 markets around the world and are well known for their high level of food safety. We look forward to renewed discussions with India on how to remove inappropriate barriers to market access for safe products.”
Jim Mulhern, chief operating officer of NMPF, agreed and adds, “As we focus on tearing down unwarranted trade barriers so that our industry can continue to grow, it is equally important to ensure that we also maintain a strong focus on food safety and product integrity. U.S. dairy products have an excellent track record in this area while India’s own government has found serious problems with a majority of its dairy products.”
WASHINGTON, July 1, 2013 — The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) today announced interest rates for July 2013. The CCC borrowing rate-based charge for July 2013 is 0.125 percent, unchanged from 0.125 in June 2013. For 1996 and subsequent crop year commodity and marketing assistance loans, the interest rate for loans disbursed during July 2013 is 1.125 percent, unchanged from 1.125 in June 2013.
Interest rates for Farm Storage Facility Loans approved for July 2013 are as follows, 1.500 percent with seven-year loan terms, up from 1.250 in June 2013; 2.125 percent with 10-year loan terms, up from 1.750 in June 2013 and; 2.375 percent with 12-year loan terms, up from 2.000 percent in June 2013. The interest rate for Sugar Storage Facility Loans for July 2013 is 2.625 percent, up from 2.250 in June 2013.
The maximum discount rate applicable for July 2013 for the Tobacco Transition Payment Program is 5 percent, unchanged from June 2013. This is based on the 3.250 percent prime rate plus 2 percent, rounded to the nearest whole number.
Denver, CO – Colorado U.S. Senator Michael Bennet today joined members of Colorado’s faith, Latino, business, agriculture, government, and law enforcement communities to celebrate the Senate’s recent passage of a comprehensive bill that fixes our broken immigration system.
Participants at the rally, listed below, praised the work of the bipartisan ‘Group of 8,’ of which Bennet is a member, and called on the House of Representatives to pass immigration reform.
“Seven months ago we came together to launch the Colorado Compact to send a message to Washington that it was time to fix our immigration system. The Senate got the message and the groups here today played an important role helping us shape the bill,” Bennet said.
“The bill we passed will strengthen our economy, reduce the deficit, and secure our borders. It provides relief for businesses and protects American workers. It will reunite families and provide a path to citizenship for millions of people who are living in the shadows. My thanks goes to everyone who made their voice heard. Now, I hope the House of Representatives will take a serious look at the Senate bill and work constructively to pass legislation this summer.”
The Senate passed the sweeping bill Thursday in a broad bipartisan vote of 68-32. The bill makes important reforms to an outdated visa system that protects American workers, provides significantly more tools and resources to secure the border, establishes a sensible system for the future flow of immigration and creates a tough but fair path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants.
ARLINGTON, VA – New U.S. Department of Agriculture rules affecting foods sold in schools will ensure that nutrient–rich dairy products will continue to be offered to the nation’s students in a variety of forms and settings, according to the National Milk Producers Federation.
The USDA Thursday released its “Smart Snacks in Schools” nutrition standards, affecting the calorie, fat, sodium and sugar content of foods that are offered apart from the school lunch line. These “competitive” foods may be offered in vending machines or other a la carte settings. The snack regulations are similar to overall nutritional rules applied last year to school lunches and breakfasts by the adoption of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010.
“The nutrients in dairy foods are an important answer to the question of how we can improve the diets and health of young people. The rules released today will ensure that milk, cheese and yogurt are offered beyond the school lunch line in places where they can contribute to healthy eating,” said Jim Mulhern, Chief Operating Officer of NMPF.
Under the new regulations, competitive foods must meet all the rule’s nutrient standards and either have as the first ingredient one of the major food groups, including dairy; or, until June 30, 2016, contain 10 percent of the Daily Value of a nutrient of public health concern (e.g. calcium, potassium, vitamin D or dietary fiber). Dairy foods are a key source of three of these nutrients of concern: calcium, potassium and vitamin D.