11-22-17 USDA/NASS-CO: LIVESTOCK SLAUGHTER

USDA NASS Regional News Release header

LIVESTOCK SLAUGHTER – November 2017

UNITED STATES HIGHLIGHTS

Commercial red meat production for the United States totaled 4.64 billion pounds in October, up 5 percent from the 4.43 billion pounds produced in October 2016.

Beef production, at 2.30 billion pounds, was 4 percent above the previous year. Cattle slaughter totaled 2.80 million head, up 6 percent from October 2016. The average live weight was down 20 pounds from the previous year, at 1,361 pounds.

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11-22-17 RMFU Questions Consequences of Tax Reform

CLICK HERE to learn more about the RMFU and how you can become a member today!

RMFU Questions Consequences of Tax Reform

DENVER, C­olo. ­­– Rocky Mountain Farmers Union, a general farm organization whose members make a living from farming and ranching, is calling on the Congressional delegations in Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming to vote no on the proposed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

“We are greatly concerned of the potential spending reductions that will be required to offset the reduced revenue and the net negative impact of these tax cuts,” says RMFU President Dr. Dale McCall.  “This could make it impossible to pass a comprehensive farm and food bill in 2018. The proposed cuts that were suggested early this summer would certainly rise to the top once again: slashing crop insurance, weakening the Agricultural Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs, and wholesale reductions to conservation programs. Cuts like this would leave farmers and ranchers without an effective safety net, further hurting an already devastated farm economy.”

Watch all the webcasts archives from the AM Session from the 2017 RMFU Annual Meeting on Livestream, courtesy of The BARN

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11-22-17 CDA: Colorado Explores Market Opportunities with Cuba

Colorado Explores Market Opportunities with Cuba

BROOMFIELD, Colo. – Commissioner of Agriculture, Don Brown, and a Colorado contingent of agricultural companies, manufacturers, and a financial services company have recently returned from Cuba to discuss export/import opportunities with the market. The joint mission, hosted by the Colorado Department of Agriculture and World Trade Center Denver, included representatives from Ardent Mills, the Colorado Farm Bureau, Northern Bean and Feed, the Colorado Wheat Board, Terumo BCT, Geotech Environmental Equipment and Western Union.
“Cuba represents an exciting opportunity to develop new partnerships and new markets for our agricultural economy,” said Commissioner Brown. “The global marketplace continues to be more and more competitive and Colorado’s farmers and ranchers have the high-quality, abundant products to help feed a growing population.”
Watch and listen to CO Ag Commissioner Brown’s comments about the recent trade trip to Cuba from his presentation at the 99th CO Farm Bureau Annual Meeting on Nov 17, 2017…

CLICK HERE to watch on Livestream, courtesy of The BARN

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11-22-17 RMFU Members Focus on Opportunities, Challenges

CLICK HERE to learn more about the RMFU and how you can become a member today!

RMFU Members Focus on Opportunities, Challenges

DENVER, C­olo. ­­–Farmers and ranchers are hopeful future opportunities will boost their bottom lines, yet they face challenges surviving the current severe downturn in the ag economy. That was the reoccurring message of panelists and guest speakers at the annual Rocky Mountain Farmers Union (RMFU) convention held Nov. 17-18 in Denver, Colorado.

RMFU President Dr. Dale McCall told the gathering that the 2018 Farm Bill will have a dramatic impact on agriculture and rural communities. Congress currently is working on rewriting the farm policy. Federal funding and policy priorities could either hurt or help farm or ranch families. McCall said farmers and ranchers need to voice their concerns and recommendations to lawmakers at the state and national levels.  Given the diverse types of agricultural operations across the region, Congress needs to write a comprehensive farm bill, he explained. “We’ve got to be more vocal. Let’s do one additional outreach. Do one more thing that will make a positive impact.”

Watch and listen to the AM Session & exclusive interviews from Friday, Novemeber 17, 2017 @ the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Denver…

CLICK HERE to watch the webcast archives from the RMFU’s Annual Convention on Friday, November 17, courtesy of The BARN

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11-22-17 Colorado Corn Annual Banquet set for December 6th in Burlington

Colorado Corn Annual Banquet set for December 6th in Burlington

Colorado Corn staff and board members are encouraging farmers and all others interested to join the Colorado Corn Administrative Committee (CCAC) and Colorado Corn Growers Association (CCGA) for their upcoming 2017 Annual Banquet, taking place Dec. 6 at the Burlington Community Center.

The event serves as an opportunity to look back on the many accomplishments of the CCAC and CCGA from the past year, and also honor those who went above and beyond for the industry. The event is free and includes dinner.

Please RSVP no later than Friday, Nov. 24, by calling the Colorado Corn office at (970) 351-8201, or by sending an email to across@coloradocorn.com. Those who received Annual Banquet invitations in the mail can also respond by using the enclosed, self-addressed postcard.

2017 CCAC and CCGA Annual Banquet Agenda Continue reading

The Denver Cash Grain Bids…

Grain Elevator

GL_GR110
Greeley, CO    Wed Nov 22, 2017    USDA-CO Dept of Ag Market News
Daily Grain Bids for Denver and Surrounding Areas
  Spot bids to producers for grain delivered to terminal and country
Elevators.  Bids dollar/bu. except for Barley which is dollar/cwt.
Bids are as of 3:00 PM MST.
                                Bids        Change (cents)
US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat  www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/GL_GR110.txt
    Up to 12 percent protein
US 2 Yellow Corn                  www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/GL_GR110.txt
US 2 Barley                      www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/GL_GR110.txt
Source: USDA-CO Dept of Ag Market News Service, Greeley, CO
        Tammy Judson, Market Reporting Assistant (970)353-9750
        24 Hour Market Report (970)353-8031
        Greeley.LPGMN@ams.usda.gov www.ams.usda.gov/lsmarketnews
1430M  tj

11-21-17 CLA News: Livestock Producers Get Paid for Excellent Safety Performance

Livestock Producers Get Paid for Excellent Safety Performance

Colorado Livestock Association Safety Group members returned $1.67 million in performance dividends

Greeley, CO –  Colorado Livestock Association (CLA) members lead the livestock industry in their commitment to creating a safe workplace for their employees. Since the group’s inception in 2001, the CLA Safety Group Program has helped group members receive $1,672,898.00 in Safety Group Dividends from Pinnacol Assurance. These premium dollars are returned to safety group members in the form of a dividend that is based on their excellent safety record. Continue reading

11-21-17 CLA: Front Range Livestock Symposium in Loveland on Dec 5th…

CLA: Front Range Livestock Symposium in Loveland on Dec 5th…

The Colorado Livestock Association is hosting its annual educational symposium in Loveland, CO on December 5, 2017.

The Front Range Livestock Symposium will feature a full day of informative speakers covering a multitude of important topics of interest to livestock producers in Colorado.

When
Tuesday, December 5, 2017 from 8:00 AM to 3:30 PM MST
Where

Embassy Suites
4705 Clydesdale Pkwy
Loveland, CO 80538

PROGRAM AGENDA Continue reading

11-21-17 NFU: Farmers Receive 11 Cents of Thanksgiving Retail Food Dollar, NFU Farmer’s Share Shows

NFU: Farmers Receive 11 Cents of Thanksgiving Retail Food Dollar, NFU Farmer’s Share Shows

WASHINGTON – Farmers and ranchers take home just 11.4 cents from every dollar that consumers spend on their Thanksgiving dinner meals, according to the annual Thanksgiving edition of the National Farmers Union (NFU) Farmer’s Share publication. The popular Thanksgiving Farmer’s Share compares the retail food price of traditional holiday dinner items to the amount the farmer receives for each item they grow or raise.

Listen to the audio from Rob Larew, NFU’s Senior Vice President for Public Policy and Communications…

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11-21-17 USDA Provides Tips and Resources for a Bacteria-Free Thanksgiving

Header Press Release

USDA Provides Tips and Resources for a Bacteria-Free Thanksgiving

WASHINGTON, Nov. 21, 2017 — More than 45 million turkeys are eaten on Thanksgiving Day, with a never-ending list of side dishes and desserts. The Thanksgiving meal is by far the largest and most stressful meal many consumers prepare all year, leaving room for mistakes that can make guests sick. But never fear, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) is available with tips and resources to make this Thanksgiving safe and stress-free.

“Turkey and other meat and poultry may contain Salmonella and Campylobacter that can lead to serious foodborne illness,” said acting FSIS Administrator Paul Kiecker. “By properly handling and cooking your turkey, you can avoid these harmful pathogens and ensure your family has a safe and healthy Thanksgiving feast.”

Begin by following these five steps: Continue reading

11-21-17 ICYMI: Watch the 99th CO Farm Bureau Annual Meeting AM Session from Nov 17th on Livestream…

Watch the 99th CO Farm Bureau Annual Meeting AM Session from Nov 17th on Livestream

Featuring: (Click the links below to watch)

CLICK HERE to visit the 2017 CFB Annual Meeting Livestream webcast archive page from the Hyatt Regency Denver Tech Center Hotel from Friday, November 17, 2017

CLICK HERE to learn more about the CFB and how you can become a member today!

11-21-17 ICYMI: Watch the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Convention AM Session from Nov 17th on Livestream…

ICYMI: Watch the Rocky Mountain Farmers Union Convention AM Session from Nov 17th on Livestream…

Featuring: (Click the links below to watch)

CLICK HERE to view all the webcast archives from the RMFU Annual Convention AM Session on November 17, 2017 from the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Denver, CO

CLICK HERE to learn more about the RMFU and how you can become a member today!

 

Livestock Exchange, LLC Weekly Update…

Livestock Exchange logo

(BARN Media – Briggsdale, CO) – Each week, Auctioneer Tyler Knode with Livestock Exchange, LLC. in Brush, CO will be inside the BARN on the Colorado Ag News Network providing a RECAP of the previous week’s auctions and also a PREVIEW of upcoming cattle & hay auctions…

CLICK THE AUDIO LINK BELOW TO LISTEN TO THIS WEEK’S UPDATE…

11-21-17 Livestock Exchange, LLC – Recap & Preview

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**********LE, LLC. ARCHIVES************* Continue reading

11-21-17 COLORADO YOUNG FARMERS EDUCATIONAL ASSOCIATION (CYFEA) SETS DATES AND LOCATION FOR THEIR 2018 STATE INSTITUTE

COLORADO YOUNG FARMERS EDUCATIONAL ASSOCIATION (CYFEA) SETS DATES AND LOCATION FOR THEIR 2018 STATE INSTITUTE

The Colorado Young Farmers Educational Association is pleased to announce the CYFEA 2018 State Institute will be held January 25 – 28, 2018 at the beautiful Omni Interlocken Hotel, in Broomfield.  This annual gathering of the young and young-at-heart, beginning and established farmers, educators and other agricultural enthusiasts, will kick off immediately following the 2018 Colorado Farm Show, which takes place in Greeley.  The CO Farm Show has designated January 25th as “Ag Education Day” and the CYFEA will begin their 2018 annual conference that evening at the Broomfield Omni Interlocken Hotel.  A meeting agenda, along with guest speaker and trade show information, is being put together and will soon be available.  This information and registration forms can also be accessed soon on the CYFEA website, at:  www.cyfea.org Continue reading

11-20-17 NPPC: Livestock Haulers Get Waiver From ELDs Regulation

NPPC: Livestock Haulers Get Waiver From ELDs Regulation

WASHINGTON, D.C., Nov. 20, 2017 – The U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) has granted drivers who haul livestock a 90-day waiver from a regulation that could have negative effects on animal well-being, a move hailed by the National Pork Producers Council.

NPPC requested on behalf of the U.S. pork industry and other livestock sectors a waiver from a requirement that certain drivers install Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) on their trucks. The organization also asked for an exemption from the regulation, citing the incompatibility between transporting livestock and DOT’s Hours of Service rules. Those regulations limit truckers to 11 hours of driving daily, after 10 consecutive hours off duty, and restrict their on-duty time to 14 consecutive hours, which includes nondriving time.

“The ELDs regulation poses some serious challenges for livestock haulers and the animals in their care,” said NPPC President Ken Maschhoff, a pork producer from Carlyle, Ill. “This waiver will give the department time to consider our request that truckers transporting hogs, cattle and other livestock be exempt from the ELDs mandate. Continue reading

11-20-17 Inside the BARN with CO Senator Jerry Sonnenberg: YF&R and Water Resources Committees, Odor Lawsuit, CALP & More…

CO Senator Jerry Sonnenberg Dist 1 040715

Inside the BARN with CO Senator Jerry Sonnenberg…

YF&R and Water Resources Committees, Odor Lawsuit, CALP & More…

(BARN Media – Briggsdale, CO) November 20, 2017 – Joining me inside the BARN on the Colorado Ag News Network is CO Senator Jerry Sonnenberg from District 1 discussing several topics including:

  •  Legislator of the Year Award Recognition
  • Young Farmer & Rancher Committee Update
  • Water Resources Committee Update
  • Odor Lawsuit against Great Western Sugar in Ft Morgan
  • CALP Alumni Reunion & 2018 Gov’s Forum on Colorado Agriculture
  • Thanksgiving Wishes
  • & More

To listen to the Interview, click the audio mp3 link below…

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SENATOR SONNENBERG’S BIOGRAPHY Continue reading

11-16-17 Farm Bureau Survey Reveals Lowest Thanksgiving Dinner Cost in Five Years

Farm Bureau Survey Reveals Lowest Thanksgiving Dinner Cost in Five Years

American Farm Bureau Federation’s 32nd annual price survey of classic items found on the Thanksgiving Day dinner table indicates the average cost of this year’s feast for 10 is $49.12, a 75-cent decrease from last year’s average of $49.87.

The big ticket item – a 16-pound turkey – came in at a total of $22.38 this year. That’s roughly $1.40 per pound, a decrease of 2 cents per pound, or a total of 36 cents per whole turkey, compared to 2016.

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11-16-17 NFU: Get Registered for the 2017 Growing for the Future Online Conference Dec 4-7

CLICK HERE to register!

Growing for the Future Online Conference

Growing for the Future is a unique online, interactive virtual conference focused on beginning farmer and rancher issues, including mentorship, business planning, USDA programs, women and veterans in farming, conservation, and much more! Speakers from Farmer Veteran Coalition, National Young Farmers Coalition, USDA Farm Service Agency, and Female Farmer Project will headline the event. This year’s conference, which will be held from December 4-7, includes farmer-to-farmer webinars, live Q&A sessions, a discussion board, a resource center, and giveaways and prizes!
Learn more about Growing for the Future here, and register for free here.

Tentative 2017 Conference Programming

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10-10-17 NRCS-CO: “The Soil Revolution – Digging Deeper” in Longmont on Dec 14th…

NRCS-CO: “The Soil Revolution – Digging Deeper” in Longmont on Dec 14th

Join us December 14, 2017, at the Plaza Convention Center in Longmont, Colorado, for the “The Soil Revolution: Digging Deeper.” Based on the success of the March 2017 Soil Revolution Conference, we invite you to dig deeper into the science, benefits and practical applications of farming for soil health. Continue reading

10-09-17 Inside the BARN w/CAWA’s Greg Peterson: Upcoming Ag Water Summit on Dec 5th

CAWA-Colorado Ag Water Alliance header logoInside the BARN w/CAWA’s Greg Peterson: Upcoming Ag Water Summit on Dec 5th

(BARN Media – Briggsdale, CO) October 9, 2017 – Joining the Colorado Ag News Network at this time is Greg Peterson of the CO Ag Water Alliance, and he discusses the upcoming  bi-annual Ag Water Summit at the Ranch’s McKee Building in Loveland, CO on December 5th :

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Get Registered – Colorado’s Ag Water Summit – Dec 5th Continue reading

08-16-17 CDA/CDHS: Agriculture Financial Crisis Help is Available…

The Agricultural Economic Crisis is real.
The resulting stress is real.  Let’s TALK about it.

Crisis can take many forms for many different people. Don’t know where to start?  Start Here

“When a farmer and rancher is facing a financial crisis, it can create an emotional toll on every aspect of life. From paying bills, to feeding their children, caring for the livestock and crops, retirement options, and even what they will be able to leave their heirs, the worry and anxiety can be overwhelming. The agricultural community has always come together to help our neighbors in a time of need and that is what this effort is all about:  pulling together to help others through this stressful time. I encourage you to reach out to the Colorado Crisis Services if you, or someone you love, is struggling.”

—Don Brown, Commissioner of Agriculture

Additional Resources:

An effort by the Colorado Department of Agriculture, Colorado Farm Bureau, Colorado State University Extension, Rocky Mountain Farmers Union, and the Colorado Department of Human Services

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Wednesday, November 22nd

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY's BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer...

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY’s BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer…

Sponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Wednesday, November 22nd

Livestock Haulers Granted ELD Waiver

The U.S. Department of Transportation issued livestock haulers a 90-day waiver from a regulation that could have negative effects on animal well-being. The National Pork Producers Council issued a statement in support of the move. On behalf of the pork industry and other livestock haulers, NPPC had requested the waiver from a requirement that certain drivers install Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) on their trucks. The organization also requested an exemption from the waiver, saying the job of transporting livestock and the DOT’s Hours of Service rule are not compatible. Those regulations limit truckers to 11 hours of driving daily, after 10 straight hours off-duty and restrict work time to 14 consecutive hours, which includes non-driving time. “Those regulations make things very difficult for livestock haulers and the animals in their care,” says NPPC president Ken Maschoff, an Illinois pork producer. “This waiver gives the department time to consider our request that truckers transporting hogs, cattle, and other livestock be exempt from the ELD mandate. Drivers transporting livestock have a moral obligation to care for the animals they’re hauling.” The Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act, enacted in 2012, mandated that ELDs be installed by December 18 of 2017.  

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Senators Want Commerce Secretary to Analyze NAFTA Withdrawal Cost

A bipartisan group of Senators sent a letter this week to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, asking the administration to collect a “robust economic analysis” to evaluate how changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement would affect agriculture. The letter says, “It’s imperative that before any changes are made to NAFTA or any other free trade agreement, that economic analysis illustrating the impact on the full supply chain of the industries involved gets looked at. As such, we request an economic analysis that evaluates the impacts to crop and livestock sectors as a result of any change to NAFTA.” America is the world’s top exporter of food and agricultural products. U.S. agriculture depends on access to international markets in which to sell their goods. As the fifth round of the NAFTA negotiations wrapped up today (Tuesday), the senators clearly stated that any changes to U.S. trade policy must be positive for agriculture. That’s especially important because farmers and ranchers have been struggling with lower prices for their products.  

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Agriculture Among NAFTA Topics on Final Day

The fifth round of North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations wrapped up today (Tuesday). A Politico report describes the talks as relatively quiet. Canadian negotiators haven’t been making many counteroffers to U.S. proposals. Instead, they’re using closed-door meetings to challenge American proposals with data and to ask for explanations of why the U.S. feels the need for certain things to change. The strategy is reported to be increasingly irritating to U.S. negotiators, who say it does little to advance progress in negotiations. On the last day in Mexico City, negotiators focused on agriculture, technical barriers to trade, auto rules of origin, dispute settlement, and investment. The agriculture industry is still working to convince officials of just how negative the effect on agriculture would be if America withdraws from NAFTA. Russell Boening, Texas Farm Bureau president, spoke before a Senate Finance Subcommittee hearing in San Antonio. He told the officials that exports helped to offset a serious drop in farm income over the last several years. “Due to the current state of the farm economy, a full withdrawal from NAFTA would devastate the entire American Ag community and our nation,” he says. “We must make sure that doesn’t happen.”  

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Tyson Building New Tennessee Plant; Kansas on Hold

Tyson Foods announced it will build a chicken-processing plant in western Tennessee. A Drovers’ report says the plant will be up and running by 2019 and will provide more than 1,500 new jobs. The $300 million plant will be built in the city of Humboldt. Tyson had already invested money in Tennesse as it announced an $84 million dollar expansion of its plant in Union City. Tyson chose Humboldt for its new site over several other locations in the state. A similar plant was proposed in Leavenworth County, Kansas, but public backlash over the plant kept the plan from getting any footing. There were three other locations discussed as potential replacement sites. Kansas Department of Agriculture officials issued a statement congratulating Tennessee on the announcement. “We look forward to continuing to work with Tyson as they further evaluate expansion of their poultry business unit growth opportunities,” says Heather Lansdowne, KDA Communications Director. Tyson officials say they are still interested in building a production plant in Kansas but those plans don’t look to be happening in the near future.

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Peterson Likes Senate Tax Bill Better Than House Version

House Ag Committee ranking member Collin Peterson says the Senate tax bill is closer to something he can support than the House Bill. The Minnesota Democrat hopes changes will be made so he can support the conference report. Peterson tells the Hagstrom Report that he supports lowering corporate tax rates but not at the expense of raising taxes on individuals. He also supports raising the exemption on the estate tax but not eliminating it. He wants the provision allowing co-ops to pass along production and marketing cost tax breaks to their members to continue. The current House and Senate bills both eliminate the provision, known as Section 199. “Co-ops don’t pay income taxes and therefore, if this is taken out, the co-ops get nothing from this bill,” Peterson says. “Also, the provisions to eliminate or reduce the deduction for the state and local taxes are a problem and I’ve heard about it from my constituents.” He’s in favor of eliminating the individual insurance mandate under the Affordable Care Act but says that cutting it out will make passing a tax bill that much more difficult. The White House has said the Trump administration understands that particular provision may have to be taken out of the legislation to pass the bill.

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China Is The New Top Buyer of American Agricultural Goods

New numbers out this week show that China is the new number one buyer of American agricultural goods. Pork Business Dot Com says the fiscal year 2017 numbers show that China bought $22 billion worth of agricultural products, which is a large jump from the $19.2 billion purchased the year before. That jump meant China moved into the number one customer spot. America’s NAFTA partners were number two and three on the list. Second-place Canada bought $20.4 billion worth of goods, a slight jump over the previous year. Number three Mexico bought six percent more goods in the fiscal year 2017, coming in at $18.6 billion. USDA says the total number of exports jumped $10 billion dollars, coming in at $140.5 billion, the third-highest on record. Farmers produced another record corn crop and the protein sector continues to expand, so it’s going to take expanded exports to chew through the extra product that’s available.  Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue says the ag sector posted an annual trade surplus of $21.3 billion, an amazing 30 percent rise over the previous year.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Tuesday, November 21st

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY's BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer...

CLICK HERE to listen to TODAY’s BARN Morning Ag News with Brian Allmer…

Sponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Tuesday, November 21st

Turkey Farmers Feel Pain from GIPSA

Just days from Thanksgiving, some turkey farmers are feeling the effects of Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue’s decision to pull out of the final interim GIPSA rule. Politico reports that just hours after the announcement, Plainville Farms of Pennsylvania presented its farmers with updated contracts that required the producers to make costly upgrades to their operations or accept a cut in pay. One Pensylvania farmer is aiming to get out of the business as a result of the new contract. Ike Horst raised 22,000 organic turkeys on his farm. Plainview is requiring the new owner of the operation to install upgrades like new fans, tunnel ventilation, and a stationary generator. Renovations will be difficult for all their contract farmers to make in the winter as they have to find temporary housing for a lot of birds. The interim rule would have made it easier for producers to sue the meatpacking or processing companies they contract with. Mike Weaver is president of the Organization for Competitive Markets. He says, “We’re fairly convinced that if the Secretary wouldn’t have done away with the rules we wanted to get implemented, companies wouldn’t do things like this.” Weaver thinks doing away with GIPSA has emboldened companies to abuse their growers.

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Monsanto Asks Judge to Overturn Arkansas Dicamba Ban

An Associated Press report says Monsanto went before an Arkansas judge on Friday to ask the court to stop the state’s plan to ban dicamba use from April through October. Dicamba has been a source of complaints from farmers across the state, who say the product has drifted to their fields and caused widespread damage. The state’s ban on dicamba is expected to go before a legislative panel for approval next month but Monsanto says the action is necessary because farmers are already buying the product for the next growing season. The company said in its court filing that the ban severely limits Monsanto’s ability to sell its new dicamba-tolerant seed and low-volatility herbicide within the state. Monsanto says every day the ban remains in effect costs the company sales and customers. The state has received almost 1,000 complaints about dicamba drift damage. The request to stop the ban was added to a lawsuit Monsanto filed last month against the state board’s decision in 2016 to ban the use of dicamba.  

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Fifth Round of NAFTA Talks Moving Slowly

The fifth round of negotiations on the North American Free Trade Agreement got off to a slow start and continue to move slowly this week. A source tells CBC dot com that negotiators have talked through a dozen topics but there hasn’t been much movement. However, that same source also says while progress has been slow, there haven’t been any fireworks behind the scenes, which is a change in tone from the last round in Washington D.C. During the previous round of negotiations, the U.S. tabled several proposals that Canada and Mexico objected to. The U.S. is reported to be frustrated because Canada and Mexico are hesitating to give counterproposals to U.S. positions on key issues. The U.S. has made several proposals that have been referred to as “poison pills.” For example, the Trump Administration wants to raise the made-in-America requirements in the auto sector, kill Canada’s supply management program in dairy, and restrict Mexican and Canadian access to U.S. government contracts. The CBC source said procurement was a topic during the discussions, with the U.S. showing no flexibility in its demand that Mexico and Canada’s access should be on a dollar-for-dollar basis.

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Pro-Trade Republicans Unhappy with U.S. NAFTA Positions

Pro-trade Republicans are increasingly worried that the Trump Administration will pull out of the North American Free Trade Agreement, rather than negotiate a deal that keeps core benefits intact. As the fifth round of talks winds up on Tuesday, Pennsylvania Republican Charlie Dent says, “I think the administration is playing a dangerous game with the sunset provision.” He says the threat of NAFTA disappearing every five years makes it difficult for businesses in his district, which includes Hersey’s, to invest in supply chains and manage their operations. Business groups have said millions of jobs would be in jeopardy if tariff rates in Canada and Mexico revert back to what they were in the 1990’s. 74 House of Representatives members signed a letter to the administration this week opposing U.S. proposals on rules-of-origin which would require 50 percent U.S. content in NAFTA-built vehicles and 85 percent regional content. Representative Pete Sessions disagrees with the Trump approach of “trying to beat someone in the negotiations,” saying we need to offer a fair deal. Half of the $231 billion in exports from Texas goes to Mexico and Canada. “If we want them to take our cattle,” he says, “we need to take their avocados.”

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Holiday Drivers Save by Choosing E-15 Fuel

Triple-A recently predicted a record number of drivers will be on the road for the Thanksgiving holiday. Growth Energy says those drivers could save up to $4 million by filling up with E-15. Growth Energy is encouraging drivers to take advantage of the value E-15 brings and go to Get Ethanol dot com to locate the nearest E-15 station while they’re on the road this weekend. “E15 is a great value anytime, but when families are traveling further to see loved ones for Thanksgiving, it gives them an opportunity to keep a little extra money in their pockets since E15 can cost up to 10 cents less than regular gasoline,” says CEO Emily Skor. “If every driver filled up with E15, it could mean savings of up to $4 million. That’s a reason to celebrate.” E15 is available at almost 1,200 locations in 29 states. America recently surpassed two billion miles driving with E15. Skor adds, “E15 is a good choice for engines and the environment, making it a better value all around.” E15 is approved for 2001 and newer vehicles, which make up about 90 percent of the vehicles on the road today.

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Census of Ag Helps Farmers Influence Future Policy

USDA Census of Agriculture forms will start showing up in farmers’ mailboxes in December. The national census is conducted by the National Ag Statistics Service every five years and it’s extremely important that farmers take time to respond. Barbara Ratner is the census and survey director at NASS and she says, “The census is aimed at getting a complete count of all farms, ranches, and the people who operate them. The census looks at land use and ownership, operator characteristics, production practices, income, and expenses.” The last Census of Ag found two million farms and ranches covering more than 914 million acres in America. The census is a critical item that gives farmers and ranchers a chance to influence future policy decisions. “This information is important to all those agencies that serve farmers, ranchers, and the rural communities they live in,” says Ratner. “Everyone from federal, state, and local government agencies to agribusinesses and trade associations all look at the numbers.” Federal law requires all agricultural producers to complete the census and requires NASS to keep all of the information private.  

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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