09-16-16 Irrigation Association News: Senate Votes to Authorize EPA’s WaterSense…

ia-irrigation-association-logoSenate Votes to Authorize WaterSense

epa-watersense-logoFAIRFAX, VIRGINIA (Sept. 16, 2016) — Congress is now one step closer to authorizing the Environmental Protection Agency’s WaterSense program. The Senate passed the Water Resources Development Act of 2016 in a 94 – 3 vote Thursday. This measure includes language to authorize WaterSense as a voluntary program that encourages consumers to use water-efficient services and products, including efficient irrigation technologies. The House is now looking to bring their version of WRDA to the floor next week, and is expected to include WaterSense authorization language in this bill. Continue reading

09-16-16 USCA: Cattle Producer’s Forum Provides First Glance at USDA AMS Approach to Next Livestock Mandatory Price Reporting Reauthorization

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Cattle Producer’s Forum Provides First Glance at USDA AMS Approach to Next Livestock Mandatory Price Reporting Reauthorization

WASHINGTON – Cattle producers in attendance at the inaugural Cattle Producer’s Forum were the first to receive news on the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) next steps toward addressing the most recent reauthorization of Livestock Mandatory Price Reporting (LMR).  This year’s reauthorization resulted in a replica of prior year’s bills, due to a lack of consensus within the industry.  However, one item was successfully attached to the reauthorization bill and requires the USDA Agriculture Marketing Service (AMS) to conduct a comprehensive study of the program, to be submitted to Congress by March 1, 2018.

As a first step in the process, USDA AMS has conducted a baseline analysis, taking into account the current state of the U.S. livestock marketplace.  As reported directly to the Forum’s attendees, and subsequently written here in panelist AMS Deputy Administrator Craig Morris’ USDA blog post, several key factors were identified as points for consideration in the next stage of the study: Continue reading

09-16-16 Restoring the West Conference 2016 in Logan, Utah October 18-19 – REGISTER NOW!

restoring-west-conference-2016-utah-state-university-early-bird-logoCheck out the agenda and register today!

As climates change, forests are impacted by severe drought, longer fire seasons, and impressive insect epidemics. New approaches to landscape restoration are needed to cope with what may be new disturbance regimes. The 2016 Restoring the West Conference will gather experts in climate science, landscape restoration, and forest ecology to suggest restoration techniques for this uncertain future, and to give examples where these techniques are working. Ideas will be presented in two days of plenary sessions, a poster session, and an evening social.

For more information visit our website at www.restoringthewest.org Continue reading

09-14-16 Six Chapters Participate in FFA Rangeland Judging Field Day SE of Briggsdale, CO

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(The BARN – SLY Media – Briggsdale, CO) September 14, 2016 – An FFA Rangeland Judging Field Day was held recently and six chapters participated including: Briggsdale, New Raymer, Grover, Ovid, Akron and Karval.

The event was held southeast of Briggsdale @ Weitzel Farms , compliments of Emmett Jordan of Jordan Angus & Jordan Cattle Company. It included educational presentations, like this one CLICK HERE, lunch and a field session.

The event was co-hosted by the West Greeley Conservation District, NRCS-CO and CO’s State Land Board and featured presentations by several representatives of each.

SLY Media’s Kayla Young & Alvaro Serey partnered up with the BARN for coverage of the event, which included several interviews and some video as well.

RAW AUDIO INTERVIEWS, courtesy of The BARN & SLY Media’s Kayla Young

14322452_10202302404197891_8945403713383245174_nNRCS-CO’s Ben Berlinger, ACES Rangeland Resource Specialist

MORE RAW AUDIO INTERVIEWS TO COME

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VIDEO RECAP courtesy of The BARN & SLY Media’s Alvaro Serey – COMING SOON

ADDITIONAL PICTURES FROM THE EVENT Continue reading

09-16-16 ISASH News: Agricultural safety group to offer scholarships…

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2016 ISASH scholarship recipients, from left:  Charlene Chen, PhD, Purdue; Andrea Costin, MPH, Ohio State; Josie Ehlers, PhD, Nebraska; Salah Issa, PhD, Purdue; Sai Ramaswamy, PhD, Iowa State; Megan Roberts, PhD, Texas Tech/Texas A&M; Saxon Ryan, PhD, Iowa State; Emily Trenkamp, MS, Iowa; and Martha Wells, PhD, Nebraska. Not pictured: Darrin Thompson, PhD, U Iowa.

2016 ISASH scholarship recipients, from left: Charlene Chen, PhD, Purdue; Andrea Costin, MPH, Ohio State; Josie Ehlers, PhD, Nebraska; Salah Issa, PhD, Purdue; Sai Ramaswamy, PhD, Iowa State; Megan Roberts, PhD, Texas Tech/Texas A&M; Saxon Ryan, PhD, Iowa State; Emily Trenkamp, MS, Iowa; and Martha Wells, PhD, Nebraska. Not pictured: Darrin Thompson, PhD, U Iowa.

Agricultural safety group to offer student scholarships

The International Society for Agricultural Safety and Health (ISASH) is supporting the next generation of safety and health professionals by offering 10 scholarships in the amount of $500 each to attend its June 2017 conference in Logan, Utah. 

The announcement of scholarships by the U.S.-based society comes just ahead of National Farm Safety and Health Week, Sept. 18-24. #ISASH, #FSHW16, #farmsafety Continue reading

09-16-16 Beef Checkoff Approves FY17 Plan of Work

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Beef Checkoff Approves FY17 Plan of Work

Operating Committee forced to make more than $5 million in cuts from proposals

After being forced to make cuts of more than $5 million from proposed programs, the Cattlemen’s Beef Board will invest about $40.7 million into development and implementation of programs of beef promotion, research, consumer information, industry information, foreign marketing and producer communications in fiscal 2017, subject to approval by USDA.

In action concluding its Sept. 13-14 meeting in Denver, the Operating Committee — 10 members of the Beef Board and 10 members of the Federation of State Beef Councils — approved checkoff funding for a total of 12 “Authorization Requests,” or proposals for checkoff funding, in the fiscal year beginning Oct. 1, 2016. The committee also recommended full Beef Board approval of a budget amendment to reflect the split of funding between budget categories affected by their decisions. Continue reading

09-16-16 USDA-NASS Colorado Fall Potato Varieties

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FALL POTATO VARIETIES 2016 SAN LUIS VALLEY, COLORADO

This report provides the results of a special survey of potato growers in the San Luis Valley, which was conducted to evaluate potato varieties planted for the 2016 fall crop. The survey was conducted by the USDA/NASS Mountain Region Field Office with funding from the Colorado State University, San Luis Valley Research Center. Data was collected from potato growers by return mail or by telephone interviews with enumerators. The survey was not sampled to provide a direct expansion of seeded acreage by variety or a measure of the sampling error. Responses to this year’s survey covered 15,451 acres, which was 30 percent of the estimated 50,900 total acres planted in the San Luis Valley.

Continue reading

09-16-16 NCBA Takes Stand Against HSUS Attempt to Weaken Beef Checkoff

NCBA News Rlease HeaderNCBA Takes Stand Against HSUS Attempt to Weaken Beef Checkoff

WASHINGTON (Sept. 16, 2016) – The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association was recently notified that Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) attorneys have filed a lawsuit against USDA’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) on behalf of the Organization for Competitive Markets (OCM). This lawsuit seeks to divide the beef industry against itself by opening old wounds and weakening the beef checkoff as HSUS drives toward its ultimate goal of ending animal agriculture.

The lawsuit, filed by HSUS lawyers, seeks the release of documents related to two OIG audits of the beef checkoff and its contractors, including NCBA. Both audits found that producer investments in the checkoff are protected by the firewall, which prevents beef checkoff dollars from being used for policy activities. Two OIG full audits and multiple random audits by USDA have found contractors, including NCBA, to be in full compliance with the laws which protect checkoff funds. Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Friday, September 16th…

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

Analysts Questions Bayer-Monsanto Merger

A Bloomberg report says anti-trust officials have their hands full as they review several pending mergers and acquisitions in agribusiness, with the newest being Bayer’s acquisition of Monsanto. The $66 billion deal consolidates the biggest seed and chemical producers in the industry. Elai Katz is an antitrust attorney at a major New York City law firm, and he said antitrust reviewers around the world have to look at how all the deals would impact the world instead of considering them on a case-by-case basis. “It’s always about the future,” Katz said. “You have to imagine what the world will look like after these mergers, and that complicates things.” According to Jonas Oxgaard, a Sanford Berstein analyst, seed and crop chemicals are major expenses for producers and this combination of Bayer and Monsanto could have some political backlash. “There’s a political angle that will make this deal hard to get past regulators,” said Oxgaard. With four other major consolidation deals in the works, economists are questioning whether there’s too much consolidation in agriculture. “Have there been too many mergers, are companies getting too big, is there not enough competition,” asked Keith Fugle, a U.S. Department of Agriculture economist. “Experts have been asking questions like this in other sectors of the economy and now this trend is happening in agriculture.”

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Ag Groups Push for Cuban Trade

The House Agriculture Committee held a hearing on potential trade opportunities with Cuba and several major ag groups, including the U.S. Agriculture Coalition for Cuba, weighed in on the possibilities. The National Association of Wheat Growers supports the elimination of trade barriers with Cuba, which represents a potentially large export market for wheat. Current financing restrictions don’t permit Cuba to buy on credit, but instead require cash up front, and the Wheat Growers say that puts them at a competitive disadvantage to other countries in the Cuban market. The American Farm Bureau has long pushed for trade with our neighbors 90 miles to the south. The Farm Bureau said, “Real opportunities of increased sales exist in Cuba for American agricultural products because of demand driven by a population of 11 million people. There’s no better time to provide American farmers and ranchers with the tools they need to expand exports and survive a difficult economic time.”

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TPP Biggest Priority During Pork Producers Fly-In

The National Pork Producers Council held its annual fly-in this week in Washington D.C., and TPP was at the top of their conversations with their senators and representatives. Over 130 producers from 20 states pressed their congressional lawmakers to push for a vote on the Trans-Pacific Partnership this year. They also want funding for a Foot-and-Mouth Vaccine Bank included in the next farm bill. Farm families also asked their congressional representatives to oppose a U.S. Department of Agriculture regulation, the GIPSA rule, that would restrict the buying and selling of livestock. NPPC President John Dyer of Iowa said those three issues are very important to pork producers but getting TPP passed in the lame-duck session of Congress is the primary issue they’re working on. During the Capitol Hill visit, producers are stressing just how much of a negative impact not passing TPP would have on their bottom line. “We cannot just walk away from this deal,” said Weber. “The entire economy would lose access to one of the fastest-growing regions in the world, but we also lose market share in the 11 other TPP countries, and that means lost jobs and a devastating impact on the economy.”

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House Ag Committee Modernizes Packers and Stockyards Act

The House Ag Committee passed a bill on Wednesday that will change the Packers and Stockyards Act with regards to electronic transactions. H.R. 5883 clarifies the duties related to services offered in connection with buying and selling livestock through online, video, and other electronic methods. The Meating Place Dot Com website says the bill also updates acceptable payment methods, including electronic fund transfers, as well as gives the Secretary of Agriculture the ability to approve other payment methods in the future as needed. A release from the committee said the Packers and Stockyards Act was written almost 100 years ago and needed to be updated because of electronic technologies and the way they’ve changed the marketplace. This helps to ensure producers receive the law’s financial protections, regardless of whether they sell at a fixed-facility location or through an online video auction.

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Trump Adviser Talks Agriculture

Republican Presidential nominee Donald Trump’s senior adviser Sam Clovis spoke with reporters after an agriculture round-table discussion this week and said crop insurance needs to be protected as a “matter of national security.” He told reporters “You can pay for 100 percent of a natural disaster, or you can go out and pay 50 percent to either make sure it doesn’t happen or protect the people from it happening.” He thinks crop insurance would be an important part of any farm bill they would approach if Trump wins the election. Some conservative groups like the Heritage Foundation aren’t happy to hear that. Josh Sewell helped author the Heritage Foundation report calling for an end to crop insurance and commodity price supports. He said, “For someone who’s gained support running against Washington insiders, the ag interests are some of the most Washington insiders there are.” Regarding Trump’s hardline stance on immigration? Clovis said “Ag groups will have a seat at the table to help us go forward with these issues, but we will enforce the laws of this country.”

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Beef Production Up Five Percent in 2016.

The beef cow herd and beef production continue to increase. Ag Web Dot Com said with three-quarters of 2016 done, beef production is up five percent over last year, and will continue to post monthly gains for the rest of this year and into 2017. Not only are the numbers of cattle growing, but they’re getting bigger as well. Weight data is showing steers are four pounds heavier than last year and heifers are eight pounds larger than a year ago. There’s no question an increase in beef production will weigh on market prices. The good news is beef exports continue to improve, with July exports up eight percent, and Sterling Marketing is forecasting an eight percent gain on the year. Another six percent gain in exports is in the forecast for 2017. This goes hand in hand with lower beef imports into the U.S. Imports should drop 13 percent this year and another 11 percent in 2017.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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