02-23-17 Trump Administration Building Positive Record on Renewable Fuels, NFU Says

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Trump Administration Building Positive Record on Renewable Fuels, NFU Says

WASHINGTON (February 23, 2017) – Stressing the need for certainty around the administration’s support for the renewable fuels industry, National Farmers Union (NFU) recognizes the Trump Administration’s growing positive record in support of renewable fuels as a means to spur economic growth, provide good-paying jobs, and benefit American family farmers, ranchers, and rural economies.

In a recent letter to ethanol industry leaders, President Trump acknowledged that renewable biofuels are critical to his vision for American energy. Continue reading

02-23-17 FCA – Joint News Release – Agencies Release Swap Margin Guidance

FCA Joint Release Header 102414Agencies Release Swap Margin Guidance

FCA - Farm Credit Administration logoThe Federal Reserve Board (Board) and the Office of the Comptroller of the Currency (OCC) on Thursday issued guidance explaining how supervisors should examine for compliance with the swap margin rule, which established margin requirements for swaps not cleared through a clearinghouse.

The guidance explains that the Board and the OCC expect swap entities covered by the rule to prioritize their compliance efforts surrounding the March 1, 2017, variation margin deadline according to the size and risk of their counterparties. Continue reading

02-23-17 Colorado Weekly Hay Report…

02-23-17 CSU Ext News: Learn more about America Saves Week February 27th thru March 4th…

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America Saves Week – February 27 – March 4, 2017

americasaves-mediumrectangle-300x250Monday, February 27th make it easier to put aside money by saving automatically. Put money into an employer’s 401(K), other retirement programs, or into a savings account every pay period. Amounts as little as $25 deducted from your paycheck per month can add up quickly and you don’t even miss it! Talk to your local bank or credit union to set this up. If $25 is too much, “Start Small and Think Big,” by saving your pocket change each week. In a year, you could have over $100 earned.

Tuesday, February 28th is Family Saving Day. Money habits and skills are formed by parents and care givers. Help children develop financially by sharing the 3 building blocks of financial development:

  1. Develop executive function for 3 to 5 year olds through pretend play, sorting money and conversing about money.
  2. Build money habits and values how children 6 to 12 by discussing with them how you earn, spend and save. Talk to them about your strengths with money and your weaknesses. Share how you plan and set goals.
  3. Practice money skills and decision-making with 13 to 21 year olds by allowing them to make money choices, experience financial consequences and reflect on their decisions.

Wednesday, March 1st is Save for Retirement day. Each year review your retirement savings plan. Be sure to participate in a work-related Individual Retirement Account or IRA, or open a free and easy myRA account. Use your tax refund to start a myRA account. Go to myra.gov to see how to start an account. If you are already saving for retirement increase the amount you save by 1%.

Thursday, March 2nd Save at Tax Time by splitting part of your tax return into an account or other financial institution, such as a mutual fund, brokerage firm, or credit union. IRS form 8888 is how you can allocate your refund and/or buy up to $5,000 in paper series savings bonds. Go to irs.gov to find out how to take advantage of this savings opportunity. Reward yourself for splitting your refund by entering the SaveYourRefund 2017 campaign with $35,000 in prizes and 101 chances to win by going to saveyourrefund.com

Friday, March 3rd Is focused on helping people get out of debt. A 2012 survey showed that 45% of families with annual incomes under $50,000 rely on credit cards to pay for basic needs such as rent, utilities, insurance and food. There is hope- planning, discipline, patience and some guidance can help you to reduce debt and accumulate wealth. If you answer “yes” to any of these questions, you probably need some help getting your debt under control:

  1. Can you only afford to make minimum payments on your credit cards?
  2. Do you worry about finding money to make monthly car payments?
  3. Do you borrow money to pay off old debts?
  4. Have you used a home equity loan to refinance credit card debts, then run up new revolving balances on your cards?
  5. How do you get out of debt? Stop borrowing, make a budget, make a plan, and don’t overspend.
  6. Get help with Consumer Credit Counseling Services at 1800-388-2227 or talk to your local cooperative extension offices for resources.

Saturday, March 4th save for emergencies with at least $500 in a savings account that you do not have easy access to. Start by putting aside small amounts over time. This small fund will help with the unexpected financial challenges such as repairing the brakes on your car or getting the clothes dryer fixed. This will help you keep out of debt by not adding up credit card or loan debt. Remember to save automatically- it is the easiest way to put away money because it is out of sight and out of mind.

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02-23-17 USDA NASS CO Cash Rents Survey

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USDA to Collect Data on Farmland Rental Rates

Lakewood, CO – February 23, 2017 – Beginning late February, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service will contact farmers and ranchers to gather land rental rate information for the Cash Rents and Leases survey. The results of this survey will serve as a valuable decision-making tool for farmers, ranchers and other landowners and can be used for 2018 rental agreement negotiations.

“This brief survey is our only source of county cash rental rates,” said NASS’ Mountain Region Field Office Director Bill Meyer. “By responding, producers help the farming community and ensure USDA bases its decisions on the most accurate data.”

Continue reading

02-23-17 CSU Ext News: Colorado Blueprint of Food and Agriculture


CSU Extension Headerco-blueprint-csu-engagement-mapColorado Blueprint of Food and Agriculture

  • February 27  in Las Animas, CO;
  • March 1 in Pueblo, CO and Eads, CO.

Colorado State University Research Centers and Extension are part of a team of partners formulating a Blueprint for our state’s food and agriculture system over the coming year, and we are inviting all Coloradans to be a part of this effort.  Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thursday, February 24th

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 24th

Canada, Mexico Want All NAFTA Partners at Renegotiation Table

Senior officials from Canada and Mexico say renegotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement will happen with all nations at the table. The trade agreement between the U.S., Canada and Mexico is being targeted by President Donald Trump for “tweaking.” Trump has indicated he may pursue individual trade agreements with both Canada and Mexico. However, the two nations said this week any renegotiations should include all three involved nations. Canada’s Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland says “we very much recognize that NAFTA is a three-country agreement.” Leaders from Mexico say the deal is a “three partners conversation,” and will continue to be, according to Politico. Freeland said any formal launch of trade talks are still far away. She says Canada’s priority right now is to make clear to U.S. administration officials and lawmakers the value of Canada as a trading partner.


House Agriculture Subcommittee’s Plan Farm Bill Hearings

The House Agriculture Committee has scheduled two subcommittee hearings on the next farm bill next week. The Subcommittee on Conservation and Forestry will hold a public hearing next Tuesday morning regarding conservation policy in the next farm bill. That afternoon, the Subcommittee on Livestock and Foreign Agriculture will hold a public hearing regarding international market development and the next farm bill. The hearings follow a full House Agriculture Committee pre-farm bill hearing last week, and a Senate field hearing this week. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Michael Conaway, a Texas Republican, earlier this month called for a different farm bill approach than 2014, deciding program needs first, before proposing budget cuts. Conaway noted real 2014 farm bill savings were $100 billion, not the $23 billion claimed at the time.


Trump Pledges Support of the Renewable Fuel Standard

President Donald Trump penned a letter this week reiterating his support for the Renewable Fuel Standard. The Renewable Fuels Association released the letter during the National Ethanol Conference in San Diego, California. Trump told the ethanol industry in the letter that “your president and this administration values the importance of renewable fuels to America’s economy.” RFA President and CEO Bob Dinneen thanked Trump for reaffirming his support, which has been in question because Trump appointed former Oklahoma Attorney General Scott Pruitt to head the Environmental Protection Agency, according to the Hagstrom Report. Pruitt has close ties to the fossil fuel industry, but has upheld that he will enforce the RFS as per the laws set by Congress.


Bayer CEO Confident Monsanto Deal Will Close by Years’ End

Bayer AG CEO Werner Baumann says he expects the Bayer-Monsanto deal will close by the end of this year. Bauman says he is confident the planned $57 billion acquisition of Monsanto would overcome any regulatory obstacles and close by the end of the year, despite delays with U.S. and European antitrust authorities, according to a report by Dow Jones. Bauman made the comments during Bayer’s annual earnings conference. Bayer filed for approval with the Justice Department for the agreement at the end of last year, but has put off filing for regulatory approval with the European Commission until the second quarter of this year. The delay, according to Bayer, follows a request by officials for new documents regarding the transaction. The merger would create the world’s top supplier by sales of both seeds and pesticides, creating a “one-stop solution for farmers” that regulators could see as undermining competition. However, President Donald Trump has touted the deal because of Bayer’s commitment to creating new jobs in the United States.

Bird Flu Strain Becoming More Severe in China

China reported this week the nation is assessing a new strain of avian influenza, H7N9, which officials report has evolved into a more severe form in birds. The outbreak of the more severe strain is localized in a single province in China, but given the livestock production within the nation, Chinese officials report preventing the spread of the new strain would be difficult, according to Reuters. Until now, the H7N9 virus has shown little or no clinical symptoms in birds, despite being highly pathogenic when it infects humans. 304 human infections were reported over the last month in China. The World Health Organization said this week China has detected an evolution in the virus that is capable of causing severe disease in poultry and requires close monitoring.  Animal health experts say bird flu infection rates on Chinese poultry farms may be far higher than previously thought, because the strain of the deadly virus in humans is hard to detect in chickens and geese.


Animal Health Market Forecasted to Reach $58 Billion by 2025

A new report projects the animal health market will be worth $58.5 billion by 2025. Grand View Research reports the market is driven by technological advancements in veterinary care, which are anticipated to serve future growth opportunities to the market. The research agency says the advanced work of identifying emerging animal health issues in developing economies provides a high growth potential in the future. The report also found that vaccines are expected to exhibit lucrative growth rates during the forecast period. The report also says the companion animal segment, or pets, is anticipated to grow at an exponential rate, owing its success as a consequence of associated health benefits for humans, which includes lower blood pressure, greater psychological stability, and reduced anxiety attacks.


SOURCE: NAFB News Service