03-01-17 Ryan Zinke Sworn In as 52nd US Secretary of the Interior

Office of the Secretary Dept of Interior Logo

US Dept Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke

US Dept Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke

Ryan Zinke Sworn In as 52nd US Secretary of the Interior

5th-generation Montanan pledges to uphold President Theodore Roosevelt’s legacy

WASHINGTON – Today, Ryan Zinke (pronounced Zink-EE) was confirmed and sworn in as the 52nd Secretary of the Interior. The Senate voted 68-31 to confirm Zinke the morning of March 1, 2017, and he was sworn in by Vice President Mike Pence at a ceremony in the Eisenhower Executive Office Building later that evening. Zinke is the first Montanan to serve as a cabinet secretary and also the first U.S. Navy SEAL in the cabinet.

“I am honored and humbled to serve Montana and America as Secretary of the Interior,” Zinke said. “I shall faithfully uphold Teddy Roosevelt’s belief that our treasured public lands are ‘for the benefit and enjoyment of the people’ and will work tirelessly to ensure our public lands are managed and preserved in a way that benefits all Americans for generations to come. This means responsible natural resource development, increased access for recreation and sportsmen, and conservation that makes the land more valuable for our children’s children. Importantly, our sovereign Indian Nations and territories must have the respect and freedom they deserve.” Continue reading

03-01-17 FSA-CO Weld County: Conservation Reserve Program Participants Need to Perform Management Activities

USDA Press Release

Conservation Reserve Program Participants Need to Perform Management Activities

(Greeley, CO) – (03/01/2017) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) Executive Director Jeff Wilson in Weld County announced that Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) participants need to perform mid-contract management activities by March 14th for crop year 2017.

The March 14th deadline is for producers who are inter-seeding or lightly tilling their CRP contract acreage to improve plant diversity, which will enhance the wildlife habitat.  The primary reason for CRP is to reduce and eliminate air and water pollution through the planting of permanent grass cover on retired cropland.

“The reason for the March 14th deadline is because the wildlife nesting season begins March 15th and continues until July 15th, annually.  This provides all types of wildlife a place to reproduce and feed during the spring and summer,” said Wilson. “Other mid-contract management activities such as grazing and haying can take place after July 15th and prior to September 30th in an attempt to meet the mid-contract management activity.” Continue reading

03-01-17 USDA Farm Service Agency Encourage Weld County Producers to Enroll for 2017

USDA Press Release

USDA Farm Service Agency Encourage Weld County Producers to Enroll for 2017

(Greeley, CO) – (03/01/2017) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) Executive Director Jeff Wilson in Weld County announced that farmers and ranchers in Colorado need to enroll their farms into the Ag Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage contracts for crop year 2017. The deadline to enroll is August 1st annually, but now is the time to visit FSA and review files and initiate contracts.

“Before farmers get busy this spring with field tillage operations, and while the weather is cold, is a great time to review and update farm records,” said Wilson. “Once spring temperatures rise and farming activities increase, farmers will want to be in the field, so call for an appointment now.”

Producers who have not enrolled for crop year 2017 are encouraged to do so now.  Please call the Weld County FSA to set up an appointment at (970) 356-8097 extension 2.

Submitted to The BARN by: Continue reading

03-01-17 USDA Designates Four Counties in CO as Primary Natural Disaster Areas with Assistance to Producers in Surrounding States

USDA Press Release

USDA Designates Four Counties in Colorado as Primary Natural Disaster Areas with Assistance to Producers in Surrounding States

WASHINGTON, Feb. 27, 2017 — In response to a request from Jenny Peterson, Farm Service Agency’s (FSA) acting State Executive Director in Colorado, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated Baca, Elbert, Lincoln and Weld counties in Colorado as primary natural disaster areas due to losses and damages caused by a recent drought.

Farmers and ranchers in the following counties in Colorado also qualify for natural disaster assistance because their counties are contiguous. Those counties are:

Adams Crowley Las Animas
Arapahoe Douglas Logan
Bent El Paso Morgan
Boulder Kiowa Prowers
Broomfield Kit Carson Pueblo
Cheyenne Larimer Washington

Farmers and ranchers in the following counties in Kansas, Nebraska, New Mexico, Oklahoma and Wyoming also qualify for natural disaster assistance because their counties are contiguous. Those counties are: Continue reading

03-01-17 USCA Applauds Executive Order to Review WOTUS


USCA Applauds Executive Order to Review WOTUS

(WASHINGTON) – United States Cattlemen’s Association (USCA) President Kenny Graner issued the following statement on President Trump’s Executive Order to review the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) Rule:

“WOTUS was originally signed into law with the intent to clarify existing regulation.  However, the rule only served to cause more confusion and ambiguity as to how, and who, regulates waters in the U.S.” Continue reading

03-01-17 Explore your safe space during Ag Safety Awareness Program Week, March 5-11

us-agricultural-safety-and-health-centers-new-logo-030117Explore your safe space during Ag Safety Awareness Program Week, March 5-11

If you care about someone, tell them, “Get out of My Space!”

That’s the theme of Agricultural Safety Awareness Program Week, March 5-11. The U.S. Agricultural Safety and Health Centers are joining the National Farm Bureau Federation in urging respect for the safety spaces around hazardous farm equipment and tasks.

Grain bins, grain wagons, manure pits, tractor seats and livestock flight zones are all ‘spaces’ on agricultural operations that require caution.  It is easy to take these spaces for granted when you work near them every day, but it only takes a split-second for disaster to occur.

Gloria Edwards recalls when her son, Jason, was riding on his little red tractor, mimicking his dad as he scraped the manure and put it into the pit.  Jason got into a slick area and could not stop. He slid into the manure tank.  Click here to hear the story from Gloria.  [Gloria. Fall in Manure Pit]

The U.S. Ag Centers have prepared a collection of safety resources reflecting the daily themes of Ag Safety Awareness Week: Continue reading

03-02-17 TRIP News: The Need for Increased Transportation Funding



Fort Collins, CO – Roads and bridges that are deteriorated, congested or lack some desirable safety features cost Colorado motorists a total of $6.8 billion statewide annually – $1,396 per driver in the Northern Colorado area – due to higher vehicle operating costs, traffic crashes and congestion-related delays. Increased investment in transportation improvements at the local, state and federal levels could relieve traffic congestion, improve road, bridge and transit conditions, boost safety, and support long-term economic growth in Colorado, according to a new report released today by TRIP, a Washington, DC based national transportation organization.

The TRIP report, Colorado Transportation by the Numbers: Meeting the State’s Need for Safe, Smooth and Efficient Mobility,” finds that throughout Colorado, 41 percent of major, locally and state-maintained urban roads are in poor condition and six percent of Colorado’s locally and state-maintained bridges are structurally deficient. The state’s major urban roads are becoming increasingly congested, with drivers wasting significant amounts of time and fuel each year. And, more than 2,400 people were killed in crashes on Colorado’s roads from 2011 to 2015. Continue reading

03-01-17 Bishop Statement on Confirmation of Ryan Zinke as Interior Secretary

House Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Bob Bishop logo

Bishop Statement on Confirmation of Ryan Zinke as Interior Secretary


Washington, D.C. – Today, Chairman Rob Bishop (R-UT) issued the following statement after the U.S. Senate voted to confirm Ryan Zinke as Secretary of the Department of the Interior:

“Secretary Zinke is prepared to lead the Department of the Interior in a new and better direction, and I congratulate him on his confirmation. In collaboration with our state, tribal and local partners, I look forward to working with Secretary Zinke in the months ahead.” Continue reading

03-01-17 Syngenta expands digital agriculture capability, names new global and North America digital agriculture leaders

Syngenta HeaderSyngenta expands digital agriculture capability, names new global and North America digital agriculture leaders

  • Creates global digital ag group with Dan Burdett, a 20+ Syngenta employee
  • Broadens scope in North America with Digital Agriculture Solutions group focused on whole farm management and sustainability
  • Expansion underscores company’s commitment to provide innovative decision-making tools to growers and their advisors that can improve operations and provide sustainability transparency to the value chain

RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK, N.C., USA, March 1, 2017 – Digital agriculture — a term that’s used increasingly — means something different depending on which agricultural company or employee is asked. Some say it’s all about data. Others say it’s about precision agriculture. At Syngenta, digital agriculture means turning data into meaningful information that farmers use to run their operations more productively and profitably, provide sustainability performance downstream, and protect their resources including soil, water and biodiversity.

While Syngenta has built a track record in digital ag for nearly two decades, the company is expanding this capability. Dan Burdett, who has 20+ years industry expertise, has been named head, global digital agriculture and will lead the company’s overall strategy and implementation in this area. Burdett was most recently head of customer marketing, where he was instrumental in the 2015 acquisition of Ag Connections and expanding the footprint of AgriEdge Excelsior®, a whole-farm management program, to 14 million acres in the United States.  Continue reading

03-01-17 Want to Get Away this Fall? Join Pueblo County CSU Extension on a Trip to Spain…


Agriculture Tour in Spain by the Pueblo County Extension Office from Nov. 26-Dec. 8, 2017

Colorado State University Extension is always looking for ways to bring education and new ideas to our clients. With this in mind, the Extension Office in Pueblo County has put together an amazing tour of the Andalusian region of Spain. The tour will include learning about olive oil production, greenhouse vegetable product, cotton cooperatives, crop diversification, and equine and cattle operations. And of course there will be time to explore the local culture through dinners, gardens, architecture, and entertainment.

The trip will be November 26 through December 8, 2017.  Tour Pricing : $3,865 USD, Based on double occupancy. Single Supplement: $525 USD. Final payment due September 15, 2017.

Hurry! Space is limited to 24 participants. This tour will sell out.

For the complete itinerary and for other details on the cost and registering, please visit the package details page at:  http://worldwide.on.ca/pueblo2017/ Continue reading

03-01-17 CDA Recipes: Millet Is Not Just for the Birds

CDA NEW main logo 051414

Millet: Not Just for the Birds

Colorado MilletBROOMFIELD, Colo. – Each month, the Colorado Department of Agriculture features a different product to highlight the variety and quality of products grown, raised or processed in the state. Colorado is the number one millet producing state in the nation, with 260,000 acres producing more than 8 million bushels each year. What’s Millet? Millet is a grain that is most often found in bird seed blends; however, this gluten-free grain is also gaining popularity in many recipes. Look for Colorado millet at your local grocery store or on the menu at restaurants across the state.

Grilled Vegetable and Millet Salad
Chef Jason K. Morse, C.E.C., 5280 Culinary, LLC and Ace Hardware Grill Expert

Continue reading

03-01-17 USFRA®: New Discovering Farmland Curriculum Allows Students to Gain Real-World Insights about Agriculture

USFRA logo 2

New Discovering Farmland Curriculum Allows Students to Gain Real-World Insights about Agriculture

U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance® (USFRA®) partners with Discovery Education to launch Digital Exploration and Interactive Lesson Plans to show students where their food comes from.
ST. LOUIS (March 1, 2017) – When today’s youth stroll down grocery store aisles with their parents, labels on food and produce may elicit questions on health, safety or nutrition. With each generation further removed from agriculture, U.S. Farmers & Ranchers Alliance’s (USFRA) Discovering Farmland curriculum empowers students with essential knowledge to better understand how their food is grown and raised, and make informed decisions when in the grocery store. Continue reading

03-01-17 ANCW Membership Approves New Logo


ANCW Membership Approves New Logo

Respecting the past, driving towards the future.

The American National CattleWomen, Inc., is proud to unveil its new logo, designed to represent the past, present, and future of ANCW.

“Since taking on the logo project, it was clear to me the organization was looking for something that combined the traditions of our history, with a modern outlook of our future endeavors. The previous logo, as it was, only symbolized our past, not our future,” said Cheyenne Sparks of Oklahoma.

The new logo itself has the time-honored cowbell, ghosted in the background, respecting the roots of the organization and acknowledging those local and state groups who continue to use Cowbelle as part of their name. However, in reference to the present and future of ANCW, the shape of the cowbell was modernized.
The traditional burgundy color also remains as its bold shade makes the letters “ANCW” stand out. The letters are bigger and more prominent on the new design. Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Wednesday, March 1st…

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 Wednesday, March 1st

Potential Deal to Change the Renewable Fuels Standard

A Bloomberg Report says billionaire investor Carl Icahn (Eye’-kahn) and a leading biofuels group have put together an agreement for the Trump administration to revamp the Renewable Fuels Standard. People familiar with the agreement told Bloomberg it would give both parties long sought after changes to the RFS. The groups have sent a memorandum to the White House which could give guidance on how the Environmental Protection Agency could implement the changes. Icahn is a majority owner in CVR Energy, who has long pushed for shifting the burden of complying with biofuel quotas from refiners to blenders. Refiners have now won agreement from the Renewable Fuels Association regarding shifting the point of obligation. The RFA now supports the idea in return for a pledge regarding a waiver allowing gasoline blends with 15 percent ethanol to be sold year-round in U.S. markets. “I was told in no uncertain terms the point of obligation is going to be moved,” said RFA Chief Bob Dineen, “and I wanted to see one of our top priorities moved as well.” The waiver granting year-round access to E-15 would “greatly expand market opportunities for ethanol, and I think that’s a darn good thing for our industry.”


Growth Energy Denounces Efforts to Rewrite RFS

Growth Energy condemed the effort of Carl Icahn (Eye’-kahn), the owner of CVR Refining, to strike a backroom deal with the Renewable Fuels Association that would change the Renewable Fuels Standard by shifting the point of obligation from refiners to fuel retailers. Emily Skor, CEO of Growth Energy, said, “If this is true, this proposal would undo all of America’s progress under the RFS and impose massive costs on consumers.” She says both sides in that “deal” don’t have the authority to come to an agreement. “Mr. Icahn doesn’t work for the government, but instead owns CVR Refining, which would profit directly from such a deal. The RFA also doesn’t represent a majority in the biofuels industry. Their largest member is a refiner that would also profit from the deal,” Skor said. She says both of those companies are negotiating for the same side, which Skor says isn’t the American farmer or the ethanol industry. “In exchange for his company getting a waiver from its responsibility,” Skor said, “Mr. Icahn promised support for a Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) waiver from the Environmental Protection Agency. That’s a change that already has strong bipartisan support as a common sense solution to increase summer sales of higher ethanol blends.” However, a Twitter post from Amy Harder of the Wall Street Journal said the White House denies those comments by Dineen, as a White House Spokewoman says no executive order on ethanol exists.


Starling Appointed Special Assistant to Trump for Ag

The Trump White House appointed Ray Starling to the position of Special Assistant to the President for Agriculture, Trade, and Food Aid, a move hailed by multiple Ag groups as a positive. Starling was most recently an aid to North Carolina Republican Senator Thom Tillis. Starling’s appointment fills a position left mostly vacant during the Obama Administration. A National Pork Producer’s Council release called Starling a “true champion for American Agriculture,” adding that his appointment signals a clear intention by the Trump Administration to undo some of the unnecessary regulations that are making it hard for pork producers and all American farmers to do their jobs. The special assistant position is part of the National Economic Council and Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall said Starling is a great choice. “Mr. Starling not only knows agriculture from his farm background, he’s also an accomplished Ag policy specialist. We look forward to working with him as he advises the president,” Duvall said. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the National Cotton Council also issued releases praising Starling as a good addition to the National Economic Council.


Farm Sector Working Capital to Decrease in 2017

Farm financial liquidity describes how easily members of the farm sector can convert assets to cash in order to meet short term debt obligations. One measure of liquidity is working capital, which is the difference between current assets like cash and inventory, and short term debt. Higher working capital means much better financial health for the farm sector. The USDA Economic Research Service expects working capital to shrink to $48 billion by the end of this year. The lower amount of working capital is a result of a reduction in assets values ($87 billion lower since 2012), and growing current debt, which is up $30 billion since 2012. Even though working capital is lower since the ERS started tracking it in 2012, the decline followed record highs in net cash farm income from 2011 to 2013. Farm solvency ratios measure whether debt can be met in a timely manner, and the current ratio is favorable compared to the last 25 years. But solvency has been weakening over the last five years, and combined with lower working capital, reflects a modest increase in risk across the farm sector.   


Trump Signs Executive Order to Eliminate WOTUS

President Donald Trump signed an executive order today (Tuesday) to do away with the Waters of the U.S. Rule. The American Farm Bureau called it a welcome relief to farmers and ranchers across the country. “The flawed WOTUS rule has proven to be nothing more than a federal land grab,” says Farm Bureau President Zippy Duvall, “aimed at telling farmers and ranchers how to run their business. The Environmental Protection Agency failed to listen to farmers and ranchers when they drafted the rule and caused widespread confusion for agriculture.” However, Politico’s Morning Agriculture Report points out that the executive order may not have a big effect right away. An appeals court put WOTUS on hold while legal challenges are played out. Also, actually withdrawing the rule would require the agency to go through the formal rulemaking process once again. That includes another proposal, notice, and comment period, and then a final rule. Environmental groups still support the rule and would certainly mount a legal challenge against getting rid of the WOTUS rule.


Feed Industry Welcomes New Secretary of Commerce

The American Feed Industry Association welcomes Wilbur Ross as the new Secretary of Commerce in the Trump Administration. AFIA announced its intention to work closely with the Department of Commerce moving forward on things like trade efforts, including animal food, which fall under the Department’s authority. The association will also support the new Secretary in the promotion and enforcement of laws regarding fair trade and open markets for U.S. commerce. “International trade offers the greatest potential for the U.S. animal food industry’s future growth,” says AFIA President and CEO Joel Newman. “In 2016, our industry’s exports exceeded $11 billion in feed, feed ingredients, and pet food. It’s important for Secretary Ross to understand that overseas markets are the key for continued development and success of the U.S. feed industry.” The association says it looks forward to working with Secretary Ross, and the secretary of agriculture, to ensure the international trade needs, concerns and interests of the U.S. feed industry are represented and taken into consideration in broader administrative trade policy strategies led by the Commerce Department.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service