07-31-14 NMPF, USDEC Praise Congressional Letter Urging Agricultural Market Access to Japan and Canada in TPP…

NMPF-National Milk Producers Federation logo 2ARLINGTON, VA – The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) and the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) praised a letter to President Obama yesterday from 140 members of the U.S. House of Representatives expressing concerns about the status of agricultural market access negotiations with Japan and Canada in the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP). The bipartisan letter was led by Devin Nunes (R-CA), chairman of the U.S. House Ways and Means Subcommittee on Trade, and Ranking Member Charles Rangel (D-NY).

“This Congressional letter reinforces the message that a unified dairy industry expressed last month in a letter to Ambassador Froman and Secretary Vilsack and that is the importance of a high-quality dairy outcome with Japan and Canada,” said USDEC President Tom Suber. “We share the concerns of Congress over the efforts of Japan and Canada to evade meaningful market access in the TPP.” 

“We believe that TPP needs to be a high standard agreement that maximizes export opportunities for U.S. dairy products,” said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of NMPF. “To that end, we concur with the Congressional message that the key to a good agricultural outcome with Japan and Canada is an agreement that is meaningful and comprehensive. The letter’s core message, urging the U.S. Trade Representative to obtain the best deal possible, is very much in line with the type of ambitious and balanced outcome our members believe is necessary.”

Both organizations also remain focused on addressing another U.S. dairy industry priority regarding the lingering impacts of New Zealand government dairy policies that have intentionally advantaged a single national champion at the expense of other competitors. Continue reading

07-31-14 August is Colorado Proud Month and the 27-Day “Choose Colorado Tour”…

August 2014 Choose Colorado Tour

August is Colorado Proud Month. Watch the video to find out what makes “Colorado Proud.”

Better for you. Better for Colorado

Look for the Colorado Proud logo at grocery stores, farmers’ markets, garden centers and restaurants. By buying locally grown, raised and processed food and agricultural products, you are receiving high quality fresh products and helping Colorado’s economy, local farmers, ranchers, greenhouses, manufacturers and processors in your area.

07-31-14 USDA-NASS: Agricultural Prices for July 31, 2014…

CLICK HERE to visit the USDA/NASS-CO Website

Agricultural Prices

ISSN: 1937-4216

Released July 31, 2014, by the National Agricultural Statistics Service
(NASS), Agricultural Statistics Board, United States Department of
Agriculture (USDA).

July Farm Prices Received Index Down 4 Points

The preliminary All Farm Products Index of Prices Received by Farmers in
July, at 108 percent, based on 2011=100, decreased 4 points (3.6 percent)
from June. The Crop Index is down 8 points (7.1 percent) but the Livestock
Index increased 4 points (3.9 percent). Producers received lower prices for
corn, soybeans, broilers, and wheat and higher prices for cattle, hogs, eggs,
and onions. In addition to prices, the overall index is also affected by the
seasonal change based on a 3-year average mix of commodities producers sell.
Increased monthly movement of wheat, grapes, hay, and cotton offset the
decreased marketing of milk, cattle, oranges, and hogs.

Continue reading

07-31-14 *USDA/NASS-CO* Grain Prices: CO Release…

USDA NASS Regional Release

CLICK HERE to view the July 31st, 2014 Grain Prices Report

July Farm Prices Received Index Down 4 Points

The preliminary All Farm Products Index of Prices Received by Farmers in July, at 108 percent, based on 2011=100, decreased 4 points (3.6 percent) from June. The Crop Index is down 8 points (7.1 percent) but the Livestock Index increased 4 points (3.9 percent). Producers received lower prices for corn, soybeans, broilers, and wheat and higher prices for cattle, hogs, eggs, and onions. In addition to prices, the overall index is also affected by the seasonal change based on a 3-year average mix of commodities producers sell. Increased monthly movement of wheat, grapes, hay, and cotton offset the decreased marketing of milk, cattle, oranges, and hogs. The preliminary All Farm Products Index is unchanged from July 2013. The Food Commodities Index, at 120, decreased 2 points (1.6 percent) from last month but is up 13 points (12 percent) from July 2013.

Prices Paid Index up 1 Point

The July Index of Prices Paid for Commodities and Services, Interest, Taxes, and Farm Wage Rates (PPITW) is 113 percent of the 2011 base. The index is up 1 point (0.9 percent) from June and 6 points (5.6 percent) above July 2013.Higher prices for feeder cattle, other services, milk cows, and feeder pigs more than offset lower prices in July for feed grains, nitrogen, complete feeds, and supplements.

For a full copy of the report please visit www.nass.usda.gov. For state specific questions please contact:

07-31-14 USDA Extends Deadline for the Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees, and Farm-Raised Fish Program…

USDA seal logoWASHINGTON, July 31, 2014 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) Administrator Juan M. Garcia announced today that the enrollment deadline for the 2012 and 2013 Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honeybees and Farm-Raised Fish Program (ELAP) has been extended to Aug. 15, 2014. Originally, program sign-up was scheduled to end Aug. 1.

The new deadline gives livestock, honeybee, and farm-raised fish producers who experienced losses because of disease, adverse weather, wildfires or colony collapse disorder between Oct. 1, 2011 and Sept. 30, 2013, an additional two weeks to enroll in ELAP.

“Because ELAP is an important safety net for key sectors of American agriculture, we’ve provided this two week extension so that producers can submit required documentation and apply for program benefits,” said Garcia.

Producers are encouraged to contact their local FSA service center or visit FSA’s website at www.fsa.usda.gov for additional information regarding ELAP.

ELAP was authorized by the 2014 Farm Bill, which builds on historic economic gains in rural America over the past five years, while achieving meaningful reform and billions of dollars in savings for taxpayers. Since enactment, USDA has made significant progress to implement each provision of this critical legislation, including providing disaster relief to farmers and ranchers; strengthening risk management tools; expanding access to rural credit; funding critical research; establishing innovative public-private conservation partnerships; developing new markets for rural-made products; and investing in infrastructure, housing and community facilities to help improve quality of life in rural America. For more information, visit www.usda.gov/farmbill.

07-31-14 NCBA News: Reporter Steffan Tubbs Reflects on Drought in SE CO, Other States at Cattle Industry Summer Conference…

News Reporter Steffan Tubbs Produces Documentary on Impact of Drought

DENVER, Colo. (July 31, 2014) – Drought has devastated a big part of the West, and the impact it has had on real people has recently become especially significant to Steffan Tubbs. Tubbs, a radio and television reporter in Colorado, was keynote speaker during the 2014 Cattle Industry Summer Conference in Denver July 31. The conference will run through Aug 2.

“Within the last year, your industry has become more meaningful to me,” Tubbs told the more than 600 producers attending the Opening General Session and lunch. “Farmers and ranchers are important to this country.”

About a year ago Tubbs recognized the stories reflected in the drought in Southeastern Colorado, and undertook a documentary on the topic called Droughtland. Tubbs interviewed numerous cattlemen and women for the documentary, a portion of which was previewed at the lunch. Droughtland is expected to be released this fall.

Continue reading

07-31-14 NCGA Applauds OSHA Guidance on Grain Safety Standards…

NCGA LogoThe National Corn Growers Association applauds the Occupational Safety and Health Administration’s announcement of the final guidance to the agency’s field staff restricting enforcement of grain safety standards. The guidance ensures on-farm grain operations continue to fall under the long-standing exemption for farms and thus that OSHA will not take enforcement actions against farms with ten or fewer employees over the way they manage their grain bins.

“The guidance provides necessary clarity and guards against overreach,” said NCGA President Martin Barbre. “Farmers across the country already work tirelessly to ensure that their farms run in a safe manner. We thank OSHA for its efforts to provide certainty and ensure farmers ability to operate without unnecessary regulation.”

The guidance came as a result of a requirement included in the fiscal 2014 omnibus spending bill requiring OSHA to consult with USDA on the issue. OSHA withdrew a field memorandum that had led to the enforcement effort following the passage of this provision. 

Grain bin entrapments fell from 57 in 2010 to 19 in 2012 according to statistics released by OSHA. During the same period, the number of fatalities resulting from such situations also fell from 31 to eight. Notably, NCGA released a video on the importance of grain bin safety and proper protocol in 2011.

07-31-14 Beef Checkoff ROI Study: $11.20 Return on your Beef Checkoff Dollar…

BeefCheckoffNewsDENVER, Colo., July 31, 2014 In the most comprehensive study ever rendered about the Return on Investment (ROI) of beef checkoff assessments, Dr. Harry Kaiser of Cornell University concludes that each dollar invested in the Beef Checkoff Program between 2006 and 2013 returned about $11.20 to the beef industry.

“The news for beef checkoff investors couldn’t be better,” said Kaiser, the Gellert Family professor of applied economics and management at Cornell and director of the Cornell Commodity Promotion Research Program, who is sharing study results this week at the 2014 Cattle Industry Summer Conference.

“It is clear to me that activities funded through the Beef Board budget have a substantial impact on beef demand in the U.S. and in foreign markets. The return on producers’ and importers investments into this program is vastly greater than the cost of the program.”

Commissioned through the checkoff’s Joint Evaluation Committee, this new ROI study could be a useful tool for producers who make decisions about how to invest checkoff dollars.

“This really tells us that we’re on the right track with how we plan our checkoff programs,” said cattleman Ted Greidanus of California, who chairs the checkoff’s Evaluation Committee. “We are accountable to beef producers and importers who fund the work we do with checkoff dollars, so we wanted to know how much difference we were really making in the marketplace, good or bad — and I must say that I am quite pleased at how good the news really is.”

Some additional key findings in Kaiser’s benefits-cost analysis include:

  • Had there not been any CBB-funded marketing between 2006 and 2013, total domestic beef demand would have totaled 15.7 billion pounds – or 11.3 percent less than it was with the checkoff programs in place. Holding the effects of all other demand drivers constant, the activities funded by the CBB resulted in an increase in beef demand of 2.1 billion pounds per year.
  • Had the national Beef Checkoff Program not invested in foreign-market development between 2006 and 2013, foreign demand for U.S. beef would have been 6.4 percent lower.
  • The statistical results indicate that all eight CBB demand-enhancing activities — generic beef advertising; channels marketing; industry information; new-product development; public relations; nutrition research; beef-safety research and product-enhancement research — have a positive and statistically significant impact on increasing per capita beef demand.
  • At the bottom line, the increase in beef demand due to CBB-funded marketing efforts resulted in higher prices for beef producers and importers, which means higher net revenue than they would have experienced without those checkoff programs.

Continue reading

07-31-14 BLM Sets Meeting of National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board in Riverton, WY on Aug 25th…

US DoI BLM logoUS Dept of Interiror BLM Wild Horse and Burro Program logo

The Bureau of Land Management’s National Wild Horse and Burro Advisory Board will meet for one day in August in Riverton, Wyoming, to discuss issues relating to the management and protection of wild horses and burros on Western public rangelands.  The meeting will take place on Monday, August 25, 2014, from 8:00 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (Mountain Time).

The upcoming Advisory Board meeting will be held in the Little Theater (SC 109), located in the Student Center Building of Central Wyoming College, 2660 Peck Avenue, Riverton, Wyoming 82501, phone number 1-800-735-8418.  The agenda of the meeting can be found in the Friday, July 25, 2014, Federal Register (at http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/FR-2014-07-25/pdf/2014-17378.pdf).

The Advisory Board provides input and advice to the BLM as it carries out its responsibilities under the 1971 Wild Free-Roaming Horses and Burros Act.  The law mandates the protection and management of these free-roaming animals in a manner that ensures healthy herds at levels consistent with the land’s capacity to support them.  According to the BLM’s latest official estimate, approximately 49,200 wild horses and burros roam on BLM-managed rangelands in 10 Western states.

The public may address the Advisory Board on Monday, August 25, from 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m., local time.  Individuals who want to make a statement at Monday’s meeting should register in person with the BLM by 12:00 p.m., local time, on that same day at the meeting site.  Depending on the number of speakers, the Board may limit the length of presentations, set at three minutes for previous meetings.

Speakers should submit a written copy of their statement to the BLM at the addresses below or bring a copy to the meeting.  There may be a Webcam present during the entire meeting and individual comments may be recorded.  Those who would like to comment but are unable to attend may submit a written statement to: National Wild Horse and Burro Program, WO-260, Attention: Ramona DeLorme, 1340 Financial Boulevard, Reno, Nevada, 89502-7147.  Comments may also be e-mailed to the BLM (at wildhorse@blm.gov); please include “Advisory Board Comment” in the subject line of the e-mail.

Continue reading

07-31-14 USDA Announces Additional Food Safety Requirements, New Inspection System for Poultry Products…

USDA_FSISRevised modernization effort includes new preventative measures, re-focused inspection activities that will prevent thousands of illnesses annually and improved coordination on worker safety

WASHINGTON, July 31, 2014 The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) today announced a critical step forward in making chicken and turkey products safer for Americans to eat. Poultry companies will have to meet new requirements to control Salmonella and Campylobacter, and up to 5,000 foodborne illnesses will be prevented each year as a result of the New Poultry Inspection System (NPIS), an updated science-based inspection system that positions food safety inspectors throughout poultry facilities in a smarter way.

“The United States has been relying on a poultry inspection model that dates back to 1957, while rates of foodborne illness due to Salmonella and Campylobacter remain stubbornly high. The system we are announcing today imposes stricter requirements on the poultry industry and places our trained inspectors where they can better ensure food is being processed safely. These improvements make use of sound science to modernize food safety procedures and prevent thousands of illnesses each year,” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said.

Continue reading

07-31-14 *NCF News* National Cattlemen’s Foundation Presents 2014 W.D. Farr Scholarships to Ison, Overstreet-Adkins…

NCF-WD Farr Scholarship logoDENVER (July 31, 2014) – Two graduate students have been presented with W.D. Farr Scholarships for the 2014-15 school year by the National Cattlemen’s Foundation.  Each $12,000 award recognizes superior achievement in academics and leadership, and will allow the students to further their study in fields that benefit the cattle and beef industry.  The awards were presented July 31, 2014 at the 2014 Cattle Industry Summer Conference in Denver.

The recipients are:

Josh Ison of Batavia, Ohio, a Ph.D. student in Animal Science at Texas Tech University in Lubbock, Texas.  The focus of Ison’s studies is food safety and public health epidemiology, with graduate research focusing on the burden of Salmonella in cattle populations. For instance, in early 2015 he will travel to France to conduct a study of antimicrobial resistant Salmonella to help U.S. regulatory agencies in making informed decisions to address pathogen surveillance and antibiotic resistance in food animal production systems. He intends to use his education and leadership skills in a career in food safety within the beef industry.

Ison received his Bachelor of Science degree in Animal Science from Morehead State University in 2011, and his Master of Science in food science from Texas Tech University in 2013. Since 2011 he has been a graduate research assistant in the Department of Animal and Food Sciences at Texas Tech.

Ariel Overstreet-Adkins of Big Timber, Mont., a law student at the University of Montana School of Law in Missoula, Mont.  Expecting to graduate in 2016, Overstreet-Adkins had the 3rd highest GPA in her class of 83 after her first semester. By obtaining her law degree, Overstreet-Adkins intends to help ensure the continued influence of agriculture and rural America, improving the legal, policy and business climate for American farmers and ranchers. Her focus will be on natural resource and environmental law, especially water law from an agricultural perspective.

Ariel Overstreet-Adkins received her Bachelor of Arts degree with honors in cultural anthropology from Princeton University in 2006. For the five years prior to law school she worked for the Montana Stockgrowers Association in charge of the association’s communications efforts and serving as a lobbyist at the Montana legislature for three sessions to help advocate for Montana ranchers.

The annual W.D. Farr Scholarship awards were established by the National Cattlemen’s Foundation in 2007 to recognize outstanding students who plan to pursue careers in meat science and animal agriculture. W.D. Farr was the first president of the National Cattlemen’s Foundation, and served as president of the American National Cattlemen’s Association, which would later become the NCBA. His career spanned 75 years and included innovations in cattle feeding, uniform beef grading, water conservation and banking. Farr died at age 97 in August 2007.

The National Cattlemen’s Foundation advances the future of the beef industry by assisting in the education of the next generation of beef industry professionals. For more information, visit www.nationalcattlemensfoundation.org.

07-31-14 U.S. Forest Service Seeks Comments on Proposal for Noncommercial Forest Products for Traditional and Cultural Purposes…

US Forest Service LogoWASHINGTON, July 31, 2014.—The U.S. Forest Service today announced and is seeking comment on a proposed rule that would provide forest products to federally-recognized Indian Tribes.

“The Forest Service works diligently to respect our government-to-government relationship with Indian Tribes,” said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. “American Indians and Alaska Natives have been connected to these lands for thousands of years, and we want to facilitate continued access to these resources.”

Many forest products are used by Indian tribes in the practice of their cultural and religious beliefs and heritage. For example, ginseng and Devil’s club are used by some Tribes for medicinal purposes. The proposal would clarify the process Indian tribes must use to request trees, portions of trees or forest products for noncommercial traditional and cultural purposes.

This rule would implement section 8105 of the 2008 Farm Bill, which gives the Secretary of Agriculture discretionary authority to provide, free of charge, any trees, portions of trees, or forest products from National Forest System lands to federally recognized Indian tribes for noncommercial traditional and cultural purposes. The proposed rule will be published in the Federal Register on July 31, 2014, with a 60-day public comment period.

Written comments concerning the Federal Register notice should be addressed to: Director, Forest Management Staff, USDA Forest Service, Mail Stop 1103, 1400 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington, D.C. 20250 or by email to FarmBillForestProductsRule@fs.fed.us.  Comments may also be submitted on-line at www.regulations.gov.

The mission of the Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is to sustain the health, diversity, and productivity of the Nation’s forests and grasslands to meet the needs of present and future generations. The agency manages 193 million acres of public land, provides assistance to state and private landowners, and maintains the largest forestry research organization in the world. Public lands the Forest Service manages contribute more than $13 billion to the economy each year through visitor spending alone. Those same lands provide 20 percent of the Nation’s clean water supply, a value estimated at $7.2 billion per year. The agency has either a direct or indirect role in stewardship of about 80 percent of the 850 million forested acres within the U.S., of which 100 million acres are urban forests where most Americans live.

07-31-14 CSU Ext Pest Alert:Sunflower moth and other insect pests in sunflowers…

CSU Extension LogoWritten & submitted to BARN Media by: Assefa Gebre-Amlak Pest Management Specialist

July 31, 2014 – Sunflower moth, banded sunflower head moth seed weevils (red and gray) have been detected in the Front Range area and northeastern Colorado. Usually these insects are active in sunflower fields between from mid-July to early September in Colorado. If your sunflower is approaching blooming stage, scouting for these insects should be initiated to make pest management decision.

Sunflower moth: young sunflower moth larvae feed primarily on florets and pollen while older larvae tunnel through immature seeds and other parts of the sunflower head. As the larvae feed and spin silken threads, the dying florets and frass give the sunflower head a trashy appearance.

Insecticide applications are made at early bloom (R5.1) to prevent moths from laying eggs. Pheromone traps may be used to monitor moth activity. Less than one sunflower moth trapped per night is considered low risk, while more than four moths trapped per night is considered high risk and justified for treatment.  If visual scouting is used instead of pheromone traps, consider treatment if more than two sunflower head moths per five plants is observed while scouting during early bloom.

Banded moths are most active during the early morning and early evening. During the day they rest quietly underneath the lower leaves of sunflower plants, but flutter from plant to plant when disturbed. Larvae feed primarily on seed and florets in the central portion of the head. A single larva may feed on from three to five seeds. As many as 30 larvae have been found in a single head.

Insecticide applications made at early bloom (R5.1) to prevent moths from laying eggs as in the sunflower moth. Scouting in the early morning or early evening will provide the most accurate counts, since moths are most active at these times. Pheromone traps can be used to determine when scouting should be started, but a pheromone-based treatment threshold is not available.  One moth per two plants is the currently accepted economic threshold level.

Sunflower seed weevils: red and gray sunflower weevils are both small weevils found in sunflower heads, although the gray sunflower weevil is larger. Females usually lay a single egg directly into the developing seed, and the larva completes its development within the seed. If seed weevil infestations are encountered late in the year, harvest may be delayed to avoid bringing infested seed into storage.  Larvae emerging in storage will not damage additional seeds, but their bodies will remain in the storage.

Continue reading

07-31-14 Beef Checkoff Sizzles in Atlantic City…

Beef Checkoff News - Please turn on images to ViewBeef topics sizzled on the Boardwalk at the Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival in Atlantic City July 25-27, thanks to a national checkoff partnership with the South Dakota Beef Industry Council and Roseda Farm.

As part of its Northeast Beef Promotion Initiative (NEBPI), the checkoff distributed beef materials, interacted with festival-goers, and cooked more than 400 pounds of Roseda Farm beef sirloin samples at its booth in the Grand Market before the inaugural Burger Beach Bash, featuring Martha Stewart.

Winners of the checkoff’s “I Love Beef” trivia challenge had the opportunity to meet Stewart, and checkoff mascot, Miss Patty Melt, made an appearance at the Bash with National Beef Ambassadors Emma Morris and Justana Von Tate and Pennsylvania Beef Ambassador Elizabeth Palmer.

“The Atlantic City Food and Wine Festival was a big success when it came to interacting with the consumers,” Palmer said. “Our stand was, by far, one of the most popular ones there. Everyone loved the beef that Roseda provided and often stopped back for seconds…. There were also a lot of people interested in the recipes and beef cut charts we handed out and enjoyed the ‘Pin the Cuts on the Cow’ game for cool beef prizes.”

Back in the tent at the Grand Market, beef ambassadors played educational games to teach the largely millennial crowd about various lean cuts of beef, to provide beef recipes, and to hand out more than 7,500 samples of Roseda sirloin.

“We had an amazing time talking to the thousands of guests who stopped by our tent at the festival this weekend, said Mike Brannon of Roseda Farm. “It was great hearing such wonderful feedback about our meat…. With a versatile meat like beef, it’s amazing what a simple rub of sea salt, finely ground dark roast coffee and Montreal steak seasoning can create!”

For additional details and photos from the event, follow NEBPI @NortheastBeef and visitFacebook/NortheastLovesBeef for more information about the program. For more information about your beef checkoff investment, visit www.MyBeefCheckoff.com.

The Beef Checkoff Program was established as part of the 1985 Farm Bill. The checkoff assesses $1 per head on the sale of live domestic and imported cattle, in addition to a comparable assessment on imported beef and beef products. States retain up to 50 cents on the dollar and forward the other 50 cents per head to the Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board, which administers the national checkoff program, subject to USDA approval.

07-31-14 NMPF Supports FDA’s Draft Food Shipment Safety Regulations…

NMPF-National Milk Producers Federation logo 2ARLINGTON, VA – Milk producers joined milk processors yesterday in supporting the Food and Drug Administration’s proposed regulations on the safe shipment of food, saying the draft rules largely write into regulations what the dairy industry is already doing.

“Dairy foods are safely transported already, and there is no need to improve on current practices,” said Beth Briczinski, vice president for dairy foods and nutrition for the National Milk Producers Federation. “As a result, we basically support what the FDA is proposing.”

NMPF, the voice of 32,000 dairy farmers in Washington, submitted comments on the draft regulations issued in February as part of efforts to implement a major update of the nation’s food safety laws enacted in 2011.

NMPF did note several areas where the proposal could be clarified or modified. In particular, it urged expanding waivers from the regulation for dairy products if a shipper is licensed under the Grade “A” milk program. NMPF urged including outbound shipments of finished products – such as yogurt, cottage cheese and sour cream – as well as inbound shipments of unpasteurized milk under the waiver.

Other areas NMPF suggested clarifying included language regarding short or intra-company food shipments and the transportation of frozen dairy desserts. On the latter, the organization said the final regulations should specify that ice cream and other frozen dairy desserts should not be included under the proposed regulations because when ice cream is temperature-abused it doesn’t present a food safety risk. Instead, it melts.

The proposed rules were issued under the 2011 Food Safety Modernization Act, as well as a separate 2005 law covering safe transportation of foods.

“We supported the FSMA and have been pleased to work with the FDA to implement its provisions,” said Briczinski. “We share the desire for food transportation rules that are broad, goal-oriented, aligned with current practices, and adaptable to the many transportation activities conducted in our industry.

“For the most part, FDA’s draft regulations are just that,” Briczinski added.

The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF), 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 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 our website atwww.nmpf.org.

07-31-14 Colorado Weekly Hay Report…

hay_20060403SmSq-bales-GL_GR310
Greeley, CO    Thu Jul 31, 2014    USDA-CO Dept of Ag Market News

Colorado Hay Report

Compared to last week: Hay movement is slow this week with steady prices,
with moderate buyer demand.  With an adequate supply of low quality hay these
prices are having some downward pressure.  The monsoon season hit this week and
cutting hay will have to wait a week to dry out.  All prices reported FOB the
stack or barn unless otherwise noted.  Prices reflect load lots of hay.

If you have hay for sale or need hay, use the services of the Colorado
Department of Agriculture website: www.coloradoagriculture.com.

Northeast Colorado Areas
Alfalfa
Large Squares: Premium 150.00-160.00; Good 130.00-140.00.
Delivered; Utility 100.00-115.00.
Ground and Delivered: 155.00.
Small Squares: Premium 230.00-260.00 (7.00 to 8.00 per bale).
Grass
Small Bales: Premium 250.00-275.00 (7.00 to 8.00 per bale).
Wheat Straw
Large Squares: Good 60.00, 70.00-90.00 Delivered.
No reported quotes for other classes of hay.

Southeast Colorado Areas Continue reading

07-31-14 U.S. Forest Service Extends Public Comment Period for Proposed Groundwater Directive…

US Forest Service LogoEngages in Continued Dialogue with Partners and States

WASHINGTON, July 31, 2014 – U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell today announced a 30-day extension in the amount of time the public has to comment on a proposal to clarify the agency’s direction for groundwater. The extension allows the public more time to read the proposal, and provide input.  The proposal is intended to help the Forest Service maintain and enhance water resources on national forests and grasslands.

“We are grateful for the public’s involvement and want to offer additional time for more States, tribes, individuals and groups to submit comments,” said U.S. Forest Service Chief Tom Tidwell. “The goal is to improve the quality and consistency of our approach to understanding groundwater resources on National Forest System lands, and to better incorporate consideration of those resources to inform agency decision-making. We look forward to additional input on how to achieve those objectives.”

The proposed directive on groundwater resource management was  published in the Federal Register on May 6. The original comment period closes on August 4, 2014. A notice will be published in the Federal Register extending the comment period an additional 30 days until September 3, 2014.

Currently, the Forest Service does not have a consistent approach to evaluating the potential effects to groundwater from the multiple surface uses of National Forest System (NFS) lands, or the role that groundwater plays in ecosystem function on NFS land. Nor does it have a consistent approach to responding to proposals that require Forest Service authorization when those proposals might impact groundwater resources.  The proposed directives would create a more consistent approach for the Forest Service to evaluate and monitor the effects to groundwater from actions on national forest system lands. By improving the agency’s ability to understand groundwater resources, the proposed directive would make the agency a better and more consistent partner to States, tribes and project proponents.

The proposed directive does not specifically authorize or prohibit any uses, and is not an expansion of authority. The agency recognizes and honors the States’ authority in the allocation and appropriation of water. The proposed directive would not infringe on a States’ authority to allocate water, nor would it impose requirements on private landowners.

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READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thu, July 31st…

The BARN CoAgNews Network logoSponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

“Cargill Will Close Milwaukee Processing Plant Friday”

Cargill announced Wednesday it would close its Milwaukee, Wisconsin beef harvest facility primarily because of a lack of cattle available for slaughter, according to Meatingplace.  Cargill cited the lack of cattle to producers retaining cattle for herd expansion.  The beef plant will close Tomorrow, Friday, August First.  Cargill Beef President John Keating stated the closure comes after an 18 month analysis of the region’s cattle supply and all other options were examined.  Cargill’s six other U.S. beef harvest plants are unaffected.  The ground beef plant at the site in Milwaulkee will remain open. Around 200 employees are at the grinding operation.  More than 600 will be affected by the closure at the processing facility.

Cargill bought the facility in 2001 with a processing capacity of 1,400 animals a day.  The company will offer Milwaukee employees the opportunity to fill positions at other locations in the region. For displaced employees, Cargill will provide support including a job fair in Milwaukee next week.

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“Cattle Producers gathering in Denver for Industry Meeting This Week”

More than 600 cattle producers are gathering in Denver for the Cattle Industry Summer Conference which got underway yesterday.  The conference of several cattle organizations will help guide future policy and checkoff efforts.  Today(Thursday) and tomorrow, groups are expected to prioritize checkoff funding proposals and strategies for  2015.  The conference includes sessions on the future outlook and current conditions of the cattle industry. Livestock producer and National Cattlemen’s Beef Association President Bob McCan said “it’s tremendous that we have so many leaders at the state and national levels who take time out of their schedules here to help chart our course.”

The conference is a conglomerate meeting of NCBA, the Cattlemen’s Beef Board, American National CattleWomen and National Cattlemen’s Foundation.  The conference ends Saturday.

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“Representative Delauro Introduces Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Tax Act”

Democratic Representative Rosa Delauro of Connecticut introduced a federal sweetener tax bill to congress Wednesday.  The bill would impose a one cent federal tax per teaspoon of caloric sweetener such, such as sugar or high-fructose corn syrup in sweetened beverages, according to the Hagstrom report.  Deluaro said people want to be healthy but we are in the midst of an epidemic with obesity and diabetes afflicting our nation and the related health care cost. She stated there is a clear relationship between “sugar-sweetened beverages and a host of other health conditions.”  The bill is called the Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Tax Act, or the SWEET bill.

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“USDA Announces Programs to Help Sheep Producers in 2014 Farm Bill”

USDA announced this week two new programs will benefit the Sheep Industry.  USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service announced the new Sheep Production and Marketing Grant Program, part of the 2014 Farm Bill, will provide approximately $1.5 million in grant funds that can be used by sheep organizations.  The funding would be used to assist producers by strengthening the production and marketing of sheep and sheep products in the United States   The second program unveiled by USDA is the Grass Fed Program for Small and Very Small Producers. It is designed as a verification tool for producers of 99 ewes or less to certify their animals meet the requirements of the grass-fed marketing claim standard.  American Sheep Industry Association president Clint Krebs said “both of these programs are welcomed by sheep producers and will be valuable tools for the industry as a whole.”

Sheep Production and Marketing Grant Program will focus on on infrastructure, business and resource development.  Eligible organizations must submit an application for federal assistance by 5 p.m. EST on Aug. 27.  Read more about the programs on sheep u-s-a-dot-org. (www.sheepusa.org)

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

07-30-14 NGWA News: Water well maintenance important to water quality…

A poorly maintained water well system can lead to poor water quality, so household water well owners should inform themselves of good water well maintenance practices, the National Ground Water Association (NGWA) said today.

“Neglecting a water well system’s maintenance can have a direct impact on one’s health, so it’s important to stay on top of a water well system’s maintenance,” said Cliff Treyens, NGWA’s public awareness director.

A particular concern with poorly maintained well systems is the potential for bacteria to enter the well. This can happen if any of the well system’s sanitary seals, such as the well cap, are deteriorated, damaged or loose. The presence of bacteria in one’s well water could result in gastrointestinal distress such as diarrhea, stomach upset, or vomiting. Some bacteria such as E. coli can cause severe illness or even be lethal.

To protect water quality, NGWA recommends periodic water well maintenance inspections. Such inspections also can help ensure that the well system is operating properly and prolong the useful life of the well.

A qualified water well system professional can determine whether you need an inspection. Well inspections should only be done by a licensed water well system professional. For information on finding a licensed contractor, individuals can visit www.WellOwner.org, and click on “Finding a Contractor/Licensing.”

Steps in a routine water well system inspection include: Continue reading

07-30-14 *OEDIT-CO News* CDBG-DR flood recovery grants for businesses increased: Grants up to $50,000 available for CO businesses…

OEDIT-CO logoDENVER – Weds., July 30, 2014The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) today announced that the guidelines and processes for the Recover Colorado Business Grant/Loan Program have changed, including an increase to the grant and loan maximums.
“These changes increase the maximum size of potential grant amounts to individual businesses to further support job recovery and economic vitality in flood impacted areas,” said OEDIT executive director Ken Lund. “Additionally, we streamlined the application and extended the deadline to allow the state to help even more businesses recover from the disaster.”

Key changes to the guidelines and processes to the program are as follows:

* Grant maximum increase:

o Increased from $10,000 to $50,000
o Actual award amounts: Up to $50,000 (not all businesses will qualify or be eligible for the max award)
o Multiple locations maximum: $75,000
o Applications submitted before June 16, 2014 will receive priority consideration for funding. This includes priority consideration for maximum award amounts described in the July 2014 Revised Action Plan. No additional application will be required for previous applicants to receive priority consideration for increased maximum award amounts, although additional documentation of economic loss and receipts for expense reimbursement may be required.

* Loan maximum increase:

o Increased from $50,000 to $100,000
o Actual award amounts: Up to $100,000 (not all businesses will qualify or be eligible for the max award)
o Multiple locations maximum: $100,000
* The application period has been extended through Sept. 30, 2014, and a new application is available at http://dola.colorado.gov/cdbg-dr/content/businesses-eligibility-process. The Small Business Development Centers (SBDC) will continue to assist applicants in providing required follow-up documentation.

Applicants who have already applied for funds and submitted complete required documentation should start receiving award notifications and reimbursement checks in August.

In December 2013, the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) awarded $62.8 million to the State of Colorado in Community Development Block Grant Disaster Recovery (CDBG-DR) funds to assist with recovery efforts addressing the September 2013 severe storms that produced devastating floods and mudslides. These CDBG-DR grants are intended to confront housing, business and infrastructure needs beyond those addressed by other forms of public and private assistance. HUD identified counties in Colorado with the greatest extent of damage to housing, businesses and infrastructure.

The state budgeted $9 million of CDBG-DR funds to provide grants and loans to businesses in impacted counties that suffered substantial economic harm. A minimum of 80 percent of the funds awarded were targeted to Boulder, Weld and Larimer counties, while the remaining 20% was targeted to 15 other counties severely impacted by the floods.

For a complete list of affected counties, please visit http://dola.colorado.gov/cdbg-dr/content/impacted-areas. To date, 196 grants and 84 loans have been requested from communities in the impacted areas.

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