02-06-17 Hemp Industries Association Sues DEA Over Illegal Attempt to Regulate Hemp Foods as Schedule I Drugs

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Hemp Industries Association Sues DEA Over Illegal Attempt to Regulate Hemp Foods as Schedule I Drugs 

Agency Ignores Prior Court Ruling and Clear Congressional Intent in the 2014 Farm Bill; Leading Hemp Trade Group Takes Action to Protect American Hemp Farmers, Businesses from Unlawful DEA Registration Requirements

WASHINGTON, D.C. — The Hemp Industries Association (HIA), the leading non-profit trade association consisting of hundreds of hemp businesses, has filed a motion to hold the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) in contempt of court for violating an unchallenged, long-standing order issued by the U.S. Court of Appeals in San Francisco, prohibiting the agency from regulating hemp food products as Schedule I controlled substances. Specifically, the HIA asserts that the DEA continues to operate with blatant disregard for the 2004 ruling made by the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals, which permanently enjoined the DEA from regulating hemp fiber, stalk, sterilized seed and oil, which are specifically exempted from the definition of ‘marijuana’ in the federal Controlled Substances Act.

To read the motion, please visit: https://thehia.org/resources/Documents/Legal/HIA-v-DEA-9th-Circuit-Motion.pdf. Continue reading

02-06-17 U.S. Wheat Associates Directors Elect 2017/18 Officers

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2017/18 U.S. Wheat Associates Officers (L to R): Chris Kolstad, Secretary-Treasurer; Mike Miller, Vice Chairman; Jason Scott, Chairman; Doug Goyings, Secretary-Treasurer Elect; Alan Tracy, President.

2017/18 U.S. Wheat Associates Officers (L to R): Chris Kolstad, Secretary-Treasurer; Mike Miller, Vice Chairman; Jason Scott, Chairman; Doug Goyings, Secretary-Treasurer Elect; Alan Tracy, President.

U.S. Wheat Associates Directors Elect 2017/18 Officers

WASHINGTON, DC — The U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) Board of Directors elected new officers for the 2017/18 (July to June) fiscal year at their meeting Feb. 2, 2017, in Washington, DC. The board elected Doug Goyings of Paulding, OH, as Secretary-Treasurer, current Secretary-Treasurer Chris Kolstad of Ledger, MT, as Vice Chairman and current Vice Chairman Mike Miller of Ritzville, WA, as Chairman. These farmers will take their new leadership roles at the USW Board meeting in July 2017 in Annapolis, MD, when current Chairman Jason Scott of Easton, MD, will become Past Chairman. USW is the export market development organization for the U.S. wheat production industry.

“I think it’s important for growers to give back and U.S. Wheat Associates has had such a strong and positive influence on my family’s farming operation as well as many other farms across the nation,” said Goyings. “With many pressing issues for wheat, we need a strong, united industry guiding us forward and I am honored to be a part of the leadership team working to continue to positively affect U.S. wheat farmers.” Continue reading

02-06-17 CFVGA: Food Safety Focus of Produce Group’s Annual Conference in Denver

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CFVGA: Food Safety Focus of Produce Group’s Annual Conference in Denver

on Feb. 21, 2017 at the Renaissance Denver Stapleton Hotel
Registration Rates Increase Feb. 8

Assisting growers in their safety practice and helping them comply with the Food Safety Modernization Act (FSMA) implemented last year is a focus of the 2017 Colorado Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association (CFVGA) Third Annual Conference, Feb. 21 at the Renaissance Denver Stapleton Hotel. Addressing conference goers from 10 to 11am, will be Bonnie Fernandez-Fenaroli, executive director of the Center for Produce Safety (CPS).

“The food safety landscape is constantly changing as new technology allows for the quick identification of pathogens in the food chain,” said Fernandez-Fenaroli. “Extensive collaboration with members of the produce industry, regulatory agencies and academia, allows CPS to prioritize research and make results available to support growers in their continuous improvement of food safety programs.”

02-06-17 NFU: Family Farmers, Ranchers Unhappy with Unnecessary Delay to Farmer Fair Practices Rules, NFU Says

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NFU: Family Farmers, Ranchers Unhappy with Unnecessary Delay to Farmer Fair Practices Rules, NFU Says

WASHINGTON (February 6, 2017) – Further delaying a much-anticipated and necessary set of protections for family farmers and ranchers, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today pushed back the effective date and comment periods for the three Farmer Fair Practices Rules. National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson released the following statement in response to today’s announcement: Continue reading

02-06-17 CAWA/RGWCD hosting Rio Grande River in Alamosa on Feb 28th

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CLICK HERE to register

CAWA/RGWCD hosting Rio Grande River in Alamosa on Feb 28th

The Colorado Water Plan aims to address the water needs of cities, agriculture and the environment in light of projected shortages. Agriculture is a focus; all the basin roundtables and the IBCC expressed that while water for other needs will come partly from agriculture, we must guard against large scale dry-up. Instead, the Plan promotes alternative transfer methods as an alternative. Continue reading

02-06-17 CSU’s Golden Plains Extension: Colorado Seed Growers Millet Meeting in Akron on Feb 24th

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Colorado Seed Growers Millet Meeting in Akron on Feb 24th

(Burlington, Colo.) A meeting to establish a grower organization in support of millet as a commercial crop in Colorado is scheduled to be held on February 24, 2017 at 9:30 a.m. at the Central Plains Research Station, 40335 CR GG, Akron, CO.

This will be a meeting to discuss, establish and organize a grower organization that can support millet as a commercial crop in Colorado. Topics that will be discussed are cultivar development, agronomic research, crop insurance needs, and marketing support. Continue reading

02-06-17 Brady Haynes: AgrAbility Program Helps Ag Workers with Disabilities

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REVISED - PLEASE NOTE: The first workshop is in Buena Vista on October 27th, regrettable there is an error for the phone number listed for our extension agent, Kurt Jones. The correct number is: 719-539-6447

Brady Haynes: AgrAbility Program Helps Ag Workers with Disabilities

Northeast Colorado agronomist, 30 year old Brady Haynes, had worked hard to overcome the results of a spinal cord stroke that left him with a bilateral inability to move of his lower extremities. Following that injury, he has used a wheel chair for mobility. Now a thriving agronomist, he has about 1500 acres throughout NE Colorado, W Kansas, and SW Nebraska under scouting management. When the challenges of getting from home to the fields he is scouting, and being unable to easily enter them for crop inspection and soil samples became a problem, Brady contacted his local Colorado Division of Vocational Rehabilitation. His counselor referred him to the Colorado AgrAbility Project (CAP), a service created by a grant from the US Department of Agriculture in partnership with Goodwill Industries of Denver and Colorado State University Extension.

Detailed information for the Yuma and Sterling workshops are as follows:

  • Yuma: February 14th, 2017, Concession Building at the Yuma County Fairgrounds, 410 W. Hoag Ave., Yuma, CO. 853656 , with Dennis Kaan, (970-345-2287, Mobile: 970-520-1826).
  • Sterling: February 15, 2017, County Extension Office, 508 South 10th Ave. Sterling, CO. 80751 with Dennis Kaan (Voice: 970-345-2287, Mobile: 970-520-1826)

Continue reading

02-06-17 CSU Extension to Host Estate Planning Workshop in Holyoke on Feb 15th…

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CSU Extension to Host Estate Planning Workshops

Colorado State University Extension will host workshops focusing on business succession and estate planning in Holyoke on February 15th. The meeting will begin at 5:30pm and conclude at 8:30pm in the Ortner Room of the Phillips County Events Center.

Planning how to transfer your farm, ranch, or other business to the next generation is difficult. Just as is planning for retirement and formalizing your estate plan. The many emotional issues involved with such planning causes us to procrastinate. We don’t want to make some of the tough decisions, so we don’t! Continue reading

02-06-17 Colorado to Host Central Plains Irrigation Association Short Course in Burlington Feb 21-22

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Colorado to Host Central Plains Irrigation Association Short Course

The 2017 Central Plains Irrigation Association Short Course will be held in Burlington, CO on February 21 and 22 at the Burlington Community Center.  The Short Course is hosted by the Central Plains Irrigation Association, Colorado State University, University of Nebraska and Kansas State University. This meeting promotes water and soil conservation through the use of economical irrigation practices.  Researchers from Colorado, Nebraska and Kansas will be presenting irrigation and crop management information. Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Monday, February 6th

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 Monday,February 6th

Trump: Change NAFTA to NAFFTA

President Donald Trump has suggested changing the acronym of the North American Free Trade Agreement when renegotiating the trade deal. Trump wants to include an extra ‘F’ in the term NAFTA. The extra “F,” he explained, would stand for “fair.” Agri-Pulse reports most U.S. farm groups like the current U.S., Canada and Mexico trade pact and do not want to see it dismantled. Trump says the current deal is “very unfair” to American workers and companies that do business in the United States. Agricultural trade between Canada, Mexico and the U.S. has skyrocketed in recent years after tariffs were reduced or eliminated under the agreement. President Trump, however, was quick to blast the current deal last week, saying he wants to see NAFTA renegotiated quickly. Mexico is a major foreign market for agricultural commodities. Meanwhile, the U.S. is a key importer of Mexican fruit, vegetables and livestock.

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GMO Labeling Bill Facing Uphill Battle

The GMO labeling bill passed by Congress last year faces an uncertain future. The National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard passed by Congress last year preempts a patchwork of state laws mandating labeling of food products containing genetically modified organisms. The law set a deadline for the Department of Agriculture to release rules for complying with the law by July 29th, 2018. USDA took steps toward implementing the law, and while a proposal for the rule was not expected until later this year, USDA was working to publish an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking to pose questions to the public. However, the proposal was withdrawn under the new Donald Trump Administration. In addition, under a new executive order aimed at reducing regulations, USDA may need to find two other regulations to eliminate before it finalizes the rule in 2018. The American Soybean Association says it is unclear how exactly the executive order will impact the implementation of the GMO labeling law and other rules required by statute, but more direction is expected after the anticipated confirmation of Sonny Perdue as Secretary of Agriculture.

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Farm Groups Endorse Agriculture Secretary Nominee Perdue

More than 650 agriculture organizations have endorsed President Donald Trump’s pick to lead the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In a letter to House and Senate agriculture leaders last week, 669 agricultural organizations endorsed Sonny Perdue, the nominee for Agriculture Secretary. A Trump transition team official says the letter was written on behalf of “farmers, ranchers…and all other segments of the agriculture community.” The letter urged Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts, a Republican from Kansas, to hold a prompt hearing to move Sonny Perdue’s nomination to the full Senate for a vote. Highlighting Perdue’s personal and professional life in the letter, the groups agreed that he is “imminently qualified” to lead USDA. Perdue, a former Republican governor of Georgia, said he was “honored that so many organizations came together to support” his nomination. Perdue has also received the endorsement of former USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack.

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State Agriculture Leaders Call Food Safety a Farm Bill Priority

The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture has listed food safety as a 2018 farm bill priority. Specifically, NASDA prioritized the need farmers and ranchers may have for low-cost loans to upgrade infrastructure to comply with the Food Safety Modernization Act. Online publication Food Safety News reports the move is not premature, noting Congress plans work on the 2018 farm bill later this year. The first in-field farm bill hearing is scheduled for later this month. Although, some lobbyists are expecting the farm bill to be delayed in a similar fashion to the 2014 farm bill, which took an extra year to finalize. Other priorities for NASDA focus on enhanced funding for invasive species programs, the Specialty Crop Block Grant Program and the Market Access Program. The group also wants robust funding for research, new tools for animal disease coordination and investments in voluntary conservation programs. NASDA represents the elected and appointed commissioners, secretaries and directors of the departments of agriculture in all 50 states and four U.S. territories.

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First Syngenta Viptera Corn Case Scheduled for June

A Kansas City, Kansas federal court will hold the first of several class-action lawsuit hearings against Syngenta over Viptera corn in June. DTN reports the first trial is scheduled for June 5th, according to a court order issued last week in the U.S. District Court of Kansas. Syngenta is facing several lawsuits regarding the MIR162 GMO strain under the name Agrisure Viptera. The lawsuits claim the company should have inspected and prevented harvested Viptera corn from being shipped to China in 2013 and 2014. Plaintiffs in the case allege Syngenta sold Agrisure Viptera, which was not approved for import by China at the time and was found in shipments of corn to China, causing significant losses to corn farmers across the United States. That’s because the discovery of MIR162 in export shipments lead to a pause in corn exports to China, a move the farmers claim depressed corn prices. All farmers in the United States who priced corn for sale after November 18th, 2013, were approved last fall as a major class in the ongoing lawsuit. DTN says many other Syngenta trials also will be scheduled in the Kansas court, in a Minnesota state court and in other courts as well.

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South Dakota Considering Country-of-Origin Labeling

A group of South Dakota state Congress members has introduced a bill that would require retail beef products sold in the state to bear a country-of-origin label. Online publication Meatingplace reports the rule would exclude prepared and ready-to-eat foods. Mandatory federal country-of-origin labeling was bitterly opposed by the meat processing industry and ultimately dismantled by a series of World Trade Organization decisions. WTO approved retaliations by Canada and Mexico, but Congress acted in late 2015 to remove COOL requirements for beef, pork and poultry before the retaliation efforts were put in place. However, Silvia Christen of the South Dakota Stock Growers Association, which promotes the state’s independent livestock producers, said her group supports the measure because it is what consumers want.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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