WASHINGTON, Feb. 16, 2017 – The National Association of Conservation Districts is pleased to support legislation introduced this week in both the Senate and House to exempt America’s conservationists from unnecessary and burdensome reporting requirements.

“Farm bill and Natural Resources Conservation Service programs help American producers provide our nation with clean water and healthy soils; and yet they are made to jump through hoops to use them,” NACD President Brent Van Dyke said. “Farmers have enough to worry about taking care of their operations without having to complete arbitrary requirements that were never meant for them in the first place.” Continue reading

02-16-17 NFU Continues Excellence in Cooperative Education at College Conference on Cooperatives

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NFU Continues Excellence in Cooperative Education at College Conference on Cooperatives

MINNEAPOLIS (February 16, 2017) – Drawing on nearly 115 years of leadership in cooperative leadership and education, National Farmers Union (NFU) will host 100 students from 20 colleges and universities here this weekend for its annual College Conference on Cooperatives (CCOC). The three-day conference will provide an interactive learning experience for American agriculture’s next generation on the importance, structure and operations of various types of cooperative groups.

“Cooperatives play an important role in strengthening rural and urban economies and communities across the country. NFU’s CCOC engages tomorrow’s agricultural leaders in applying cooperative business principles and learning about opportunities available to them through the cooperative model,” said NFU President Roger Johnson.  Continue reading

02-16-17 Colorado Weekly Hay Report…

Farming Evolution 2017 in Holyoke, CO Feb 14-15 WEBCAST ARCHIVES


CLICK HERE to watch LIVE or the archives webcasts of Farming Evolution 2017 from Holyoke, CO Feb 15-16

CLICK HERE to watch LIVE or the archives webcasts of Farming Evolution 2017 from Holyoke, CO Feb 15-16

Are you a crop or livestock producer or property owner interested in the changing landscape of no-till and grazing management? If so, pull out your 2017 calendar and mark February 15 & 16 for the Farming Evolution. The event will be at the Phillips County Fair Grounds Event Center in Holyoke, CO. Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thursday, February 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

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thursday, February 16th

Japan Open to Bilateral Trade Agreement with U.S.

Japan’s Prime Minister told the nation’s parliament this week he is open to a bilateral trade agreement with the United States. Prime Minister Shinzo Abe (sheen-zoh ah-bay) says he is “not afraid” of a free trade agreement with the U.S. if it benefits Japan, according to online newspaper Japan Today. Abe made the comments following a visit to the United States to meet with U.S. President Donald Trump. The two leaders agreed to launch high-level economic dialogue, including possibly discussing bilateral trade framework. U.S. President Trump prefers bilateral trade deals over multilateral deals, such as the Trans-Pacific Partnership he withdrew the U.S. from last month. However, analysts in Japan predict that compared to trade negotiations involving multiple nations, Japan may find itself facing harsher demands from the United States in bilateral talks.


Kansas Senator Says Wheat, Sorghum Also Key Farm Bill Debate Commodities

Kansas Republican U.S. Senator Jerry Moran(more-ran) says wheat and sorghum need attention in the next farm bill, along with other key commodities including cotton and dairy. Legislators and agriculture groups have largely focused on cotton and dairy products so far during the early stages of farm bill discussions. In a recent editorial, Moran says lawmakers should “not forget the farm crisis in the High Plains.” Moran notes hard red winter wheat acres in Kansas are at the second lowest level in the past 100 years, reflecting the “economic reality currently facing wheat producers.” Meanwhile, Moran says the threat of sugarcane aphids to sorghum is making it harder to make a profit on the traditionally low-input crop, meaning sugarcane acres may fall by another 30 percent this year. Moran says that if farmers from across the nation – cotton, livestock, wheat and rice producers included – stand together during the next farm bill, he is “confident we can work together to address the critical issues facing growers of every commodity.”


Immigration Crackdown Making Farm Labor Nervous

Recent government raids targeting undocumented immigrants in the U.S. are causing distress through the agriculture labor sector. Agriculture is heavily dependent on foreign workers and recent arrests made in at least six states over the past week has left undocumented workers afraid to travel and farmers pondering whether they can risk hiring the workers, according to report by Bloomberg News. The American Farm Bureau Federation says more than half of U.S. farm workers are undocumented, and farmers are already coping with a decreasing labor supply in the Western U.S. due to increased border security. An executive order by President Donald Trump sparked the raids and could have the potential to strip farms and meat-processing plants of labor. The immigration crackdown may also mean rising grocery costs for consumers. A recent Farm Bureau study shows enforcement-only immigration policy without reforms that benefit farm labor could increase food prices by as much as six percent.


European Union Lawmakers Back Canada Trade Deal

The European Union Parliament backed a measure Wednesday approving the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement between the European Union and Canada. The vote means large parts of the EU-Canada deal, notably tariff reduction, may finally enter into force some eight years after negotiations began, according to Reuters. Backers of the agreement say CETA will increase trade between Canada and the EU by 20 percent. The move marks a success for open market policy supporters following protests over CETA and opposition to multilateral trade deals by U.S. President Donald Trump. Under the trade agreement between Canada and the EU Canada will eliminate duties for 90.9 percent of all its agricultural tariff lines. EU member countries must approve other parts of the trade agreement, a process that may take several years.


High Fructose Corn Syrup Use Declining in U.S.

Domestic use of high fructose corn syrup continues to fall, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture. A recent report by the USDA Economic Research Service says use of the sweetener has generally been in decline since 2006, despite a recent leveling off over the past few years. High fructose corn syrup is marketed in two primary compositions: HFCS-55 and HFCS-42. USDA says HFCS-55 contains 55 percent fructose and is used primarily in soft drinks, while HFCS-42, which contains 42 percent fructose, is used in a broader range of goods, including baked foods. The long-term decline in consumption has primarily been the result of a reduction of HFCS-42 use. USDA says the decline has been driven by consumer demand for healthier alternatives, rising exports, and greater availability of substitutes.


Study Shows Fewer Grain Dust Explosions in 2016

The number of grain dust explosions in the United States fell to a 10-year low in 2016, but two of the incidents resulted in the first reported fatalities since 2013, according to a recent report by Purdue University. The report shows there were five grain dust explosions in 2016, compared to eight in 2015 and a 10-year average of 9.2 per year. Reported causes of ignition last year included sparks, possibly generated by static electricity or friction between machine parts, and overheated bearings, such as those on conveyor belts and elevators. One of the explosions occurred in a feed mill, two in grain mills and two in grain elevators. Grain dust was confirmed as the main source of fuel in three of the incidents, but could not be confirmed in two of the others. Two of the three fatalities in 2016 were from Indiana, and the third was from Georgia. Eight people were injured nationwide.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service