05-31-17 EPA: Montrose, Colorado receives $300K for property assessment and redevelopment

EPA: Montrose, Colorado receives $300K for property assessment and redevelopment

Brownfields grant to advance riverfront corridor and historic downtown revitalization efforts

DENVER – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has selected the City of Montrose, Colorado as a recipient of a $300,000 Brownfields grant to assess properties that have been identified as priorities for productive reuse. Funds will be used to identify and assess brownfields along the riverfront corridor and historic downtown area to make way for better housing and a thriving downtown commercial district and provide for more and better transit and greenspace in the downtown riverfront corridor. Continue reading

04-28-17 Hope You will join the WDA & Celebrate Word Milk Day on June 1st!

CLICK HERE to learn more

World Milk Day – Celebrate with Us!

June 1 is World Milk Day! To celebrate, we would love for you to take a picture of you or your family drinking milk and post it to social media. The hashtag to use is #WorldMilkDay and you are, of course, welcome to tag us as well – on Facebook at Western Dairy Association, Twitter @WesternDairy and Instagram @WesternDairy.

World Milk Day is a day to celebrate our favorite nutrient-rich beverage – its low cost, accessibility and delicious versatility. Learn more about events taking place worldwide at WorldMilkDay2017.com.

Please let us know if you have any questions – we look forward to celebrating with you on social media in the month leading up to World Milk Day!

This report brought to you by the Western Dairy Association, to learn ore – CLICK HERE

05-31-17 ASI’s Young Entrepreneur Program Announces Farm and Ranch Tour in Sioux Falls, SD July 17-18

ASI’s Young Entrepreneur Program Announces Farm and Ranch Tour in Sioux Falls, SD July 17-18

DENVER -The American Sheep Industry Association’s Young Entrepreneur Program is announcing a farm and ranch tour aimed at helping young and beginning sheep producers network and gain a broader understanding of the industry. This tour, made possible by a grant from the Let’s Grow Program, will be July 17-18 in Sioux Falls, S.D.

Continue reading

05-31-17 FARM Animal Care Program Seeks Producer Feedback on Resources and Tools

FARM Animal Care Program Seeks Producer Feedback on Resources and Tools

ARLINGTON, VA – The National Dairy Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) Program, in collaboration with Colorado State University, is conducting a dairy farmer survey to learn more about perceptions of the FARM Program and how it can continue to improve the resources it offers producers.

The voluntary survey will probe producers’ knowledge of the program and the value they think it provides to their operations. The study will help FARM Animal Care better provide cooperatives and farmers with the appropriate guidance and materials required of FARM Program participants. Survey questions address topics such as the producer’s familiarity with the program, where they seek additional FARM Program information, and why stewardship practices, as assessed by FARM, are important to them. Those interested in taking the survey can do so by clicking here.

“Participants in the FARM Program produce more than 98 percent of the U.S. milk supply by volume, so it’s important that we understand producers’ thoughts on how FARM can further positively impact their businesses,” said Emily Meredith, chief of staff for NMPF, which launched the program in 2009. “Just like dairy farms are on a path of continuous improvement, the FARM Program wants to continuously improve how we work with our participants. Continue reading

05-31-17 RMFU Members Sharing Priorities For Next Food & Farm Bill

RMFU Members Sharing Priorities For Next Food & Farm Bill

Written by: Dale McCall – RMFU President

The 2018 Food and Farm Bill will be written at a critical time for America’s farmers and ranchers. The financial stress hurting producers is increasing daily. During recent weeks, our members have been attending (and sometimes hosting) Food and Farm Bill listening sessions held by Senator Michael Bennet and his staff. Farmers and ranchers in Colorado are voicing their concerns about the policy process and offering their key concerns they believe Congress needs to address as lawmakers begin writing the 2018 Food and Farm Bill. Here are the chief concerns and priorities our members are putting at the forefront. Continue reading

05-31-17 NSP Hires New Communications Director

NSP Hires New Communications Director

LUBBOCK, Texas —Mollie Dykes has joined the National Sorghum Producers staff as communications director. Dykes will provide a broad range of public relations and marketing communications support to the organization and will serve as associate editor for Sorghum Grower magazine.

“I am very excited to welcome Mollie to team sorghum,” said NSP External Affairs Director Jennifer Blackburn. “Mollie is an avid leader and brings a new facet of experience to our communications team. As  we prepare for a number of digital asset updates and a rich political environment surrounding farm bill reauthorization, she will be instrumental in helping NSP achieve its goals to better serve the sorghum industry.” Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Wednesday, May 31st

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, May 31st

Canada: NAFTA Talks to Start in August

Canada’s Foreign Affairs Minister told the nation’s lawmakers this week negotiations over the North American Free Trade Agreement would start in August, the earliest possible by U.S. law. Chrystia Freeland briefed Canadian lawmakers Monday on the negotiation process. She says a time crunch is looming, with the U.S. and Mexico in the biggest hurry to start talks. The Canadian Press reports pre-negotiation consultations will take several months. Then, once talks begin between Canada, Mexico and the U.S., there are only a few months left before political obstacles start popping up, causing potential delays. Those obstacles include the 2018 presidential elections in Mexico and the U.S. midterm election cycle. Currently, the three countries are consulting with domestic partners as they prepare for negotiating positions. Negotiations can begin any time after August 16th, after a 90-day consolation period required by U.S. law.

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USDA Political Appointment Nominee’s Expected Soon

Nominee’s for The Department of Agriculture’s political post within the agency are expected within a month or so. Sources close to the Secretary have allegedly told Politico that Perdue has made his picks for key positions within USDA, and those picks could be announced in June. There are nearly a dozen political positions that require confirmation by the U.S. Senate, to go along with near 200-some political appointees within the federal government. No official announcements have been made yet by USDA or Perdue, but several have speculated that Steve Censky, CEO of the American Soybean Association, will be nominated as USDA undersecretary. Other names floated for USDA posts include Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey, Indiana Agriculture Department Director Ted McKinney, and Sam Clovis, who has served on the USDA transition team.

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Secretary Perdue Continues Farm State Travels

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue continues traveling this week as he will attend the Montana Ag Summit Thursday. Senate Agriculture Committee Chairman Pat Roberts is expected to join Perdue at the event that was organized by committee member Steve Daines, a Montana Republican. Also attending is a team of Mexican barley and malt importers, who are visiting the U.S. as part of a trip arranged by the U.S. Grains Council to talk trade. The trip comes ahead of the North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations this fall. Perdue and Roberts are expected to talk about the farm bill, ag technology and bringing youth into agriculture. The trip comes as Perdue enters his second month as Agriculture Secretary and follows a host of trips to farm states in his first month on the job.

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TPP Member Nations Moving On

The 11 remaining member nations of the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement are moving on with finalizing the agreement without the United States. Four months after the United States announced it would withdraw from the trade agreement, the remaining 11 TPP countries agreed to “launch a process to assess options to bring the comprehensive, high-quality agreement into force expeditiously, including how to facilitate membership for the original signatories.” The countries agreed on a November 10th deadline at the recent Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation leaders’ summit in Vietnam. U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer says the move will not draw the U.S. back to the trade agreement, stressing the need for bilateral negotiations. TPP would be worth an estimated $4 billion to U.S. agriculture, if the U.S. were included in the agreement.

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FDA Considering Nutrition Facts Panel Delay

The Food and Drug Administration is considering a delaying implementation of a revamped nutrition facts panel on retail goods. Meat industry publication Meatingplace reports the move would follow a request by industry groups that have asked the FDA to delay the new food labels by three years. The updated labels are scheduled to start being used by July of next year. However, industry groups say they need more time to line the nutrition panel up with GMO labeling rules by USDA that are due out next July. In testimony before House Appropriations Committee’s subcommittee on agriculture, FDA commissioner Scott Gottlieb said: “We’re going to be taking a hard look at the implementation schedule.” Under the Obama administration, FDA announced the changes to reflect updated science, and to provide an update on serving sizes.

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Rural America the New ‘Inner City’

The Wall Street Journal has dubbed rural America as the new “inner city,” riddled with low income, sparse access to healthcare, crime and drugs. A special analysis by the publication says data reveals that sparsely populated counties have replaced large cities as America’s most troubled areas by key measures of socioeconomic well-being. The shift began in the 1990s and continues at an accelerating pace. The analysis says rural America now faces higher teen births and divorce rates than urban areas, and education and employment gaps have widened at a faster pace than other areas. The data also says rural areas have become less healthy than America’s cities. In 1980, rural areas had lower rates of heart disease and cancer. By 2014, the opposite was true. The publication says rural America is also getting close to the milestone at which more people are dying than are being born.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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05-30-17 Culver’s “Scoops of Thanks Day” Raises $50,700 for Agricultural Education

Culver’s “Scoops of Thanks Day” Raises $50,700 for Agricultural Education

Restaurant guests’ donations supported FFA and other ag organizations

PRAIRIE DU SAC, Wis. – May 30, 2017Giving back to local communities has never been so delicious. On May 4, guests stopped by Culver’s restaurants across the country to donate $1 (or more) to local FFA chapters and other agricultural organizations. Guests received a single scoop of Fresh Frozen Custard in return for their donation, raising $50,700 for agricultural education organizations. Scoops of Thanks Day is part of Culver’s Thank You FarmersÔ program, which works to support today’s farm families and the next generation of agricultural leaders.

“Supporting agricultural education in local communities is as important to our guests as it is to Culver’s,” said Jessie Corning, senior marketing manager for Culver’s. “Scoops of Thanks Day allows us to come together and show our support for the next generation of agricultural leaders.” Continue reading

05-30-17 Inside Culver’s Restaurants with Jessie Corning: Thank You Farmers Initiative, #FarmingFridays & more…

Inside Culver’s Restaurants with Jessie Corning: Thank You Farmers Initiative, #FarmingFridays & more…

Jessie Corning, Senior Marketing Manager @ Culver’s

(THE BARN – BRIGGSDALE, CO) —May 30, 2017— Following the success of last year’s #FarmingFridays social content series, Culver’s has again invited agricultural influencers to share photos and videos depicting their passion for and knowledge about agriculture.  #FarmingFridays is part of Culver’s Thank You Farmers initiative, which recognizes the hard work and commitment of the farmers who feed the nation. And new for this year, #FarmingFridays will extend  throughout the spring, summer and fall seasons on five different Fridays, beginning on April 28 and ending on November 3. Joining me to discuss #FarmingFridays and Culver’s Thank You Farmers Initiative is Jessie Corning, Senior Marketing Manager @ Culver’s

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To date, Thank You Farmers has raised over one million dollars in support of the National FFA Organization and Foundation, local FFA chapters and a variety of local agricultural organizations. To learn more about the program and how to get involved, visit www.culvers.com/farmers.

About Culver’s: Continue reading

05-30-17 Pork Checkoff Announces Sponsored Activities at the 2017 World Pork Expo

Pork Checkoff Announces Sponsored Activities at the 2017 World Pork Expo

DES MOINES, IOWA – May 30 – The Pork Checkoff has an exciting lineup of Checkoff-sponsored events scheduled for World Pork Expo, June 7-9, 2017, at the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines. World Pork Expo attendees can stop by the Varied Industries Building (booth No. 122) or the Pork Checkoff Hospitality Tent to learn more about Checkoff programs and initiatives.

Pork Checkoff Hospitality Tent (north of the Varied Industries Building)

Continue reading

05-30-17 UNL EXT/SARE: 2017 Wheat and Field peas – FIELD DAYS

2017 Nebraska Wheat and Field peas – FIELD DAYS

*REVISED* May 30, 2017 – Don’t miss out the opportunity to enjoy your time and learn about wheat, field peas, and cover crops from our research plots, ag-Industry, and other farmers. Get registered for our Wheat and Field Pea Field Days that will be held at five sites across central and western Nebraska this June:

  • June 16 (Friday), 8 a.m. – Webster County (near Bladen) – CLICK HERE
  • June 19 (Monday), 9:30 a.m. – UNL WCREC at North Platte – CLICK HERE
  • June 20 (Tuesday), 8 a.m. – Perkins County (near Grant) – CLICK HERE
  • June 21 (Wednesday), 8 a.m. – UNL HPAL at Sidney
  • June 22 (Thursday), 9 a.m. – Hemingford and 1 p.m. – Scottsbluff

Field Days are FREE, thanks to our sponsors!!! Lunch and refreshments will be served at each location. Directions to the research plots and detailed agenda for each location can be found at: http://cropwatch.unl.edu/2017/field-pea-field-days . Flyer can be found on that web page or in this email attachment.

To PRE-REGISTER by June 14 by calling Perkins County Extension Office at 308-352-4340, send email to Strahinja Stepanovic at sstepanovic2@unl.edu , or just visit our online registration page at: http://cropwatch.unl.edu/registration-june-2017-nebraska-extension-field-pea-field-days

Submitted to The BARN by: Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Tuesday, May 30th

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 Tuesday, May 30th

Roberts/Stabenow: No More Cuts to Agriculture

The Senate Ag Committee heard testimony this week from several economists on the challenges that currently exist in farm country. The Hagstrom Report says Republican Ag Chair Pat Roberts of Kansas and Ranking Democrat Debbie Stabenow of Michigan both came to the same conclusion: no more cuts for farm bill programs. At what he described as the first farm bill hearing in Washington, Roberts did say the nation’s debt is approaching $20 trillion. However, he said between the savings from the last farm bill and the Ag Department’s crop insurance negotiation, “everyone on this committee thinks agriculture has already given at the store.” Roberts emphasized the importance of producers having risk management tools at their disposal. “Let me emphasize that crop insurance is the most valuable tool in the risk management toolbox,” he said. Stabenow focused more on the proposed Trump budget released earlier this week, saying, “It cuts crop insurance by $29 billion which would take away a critical part of the farm safety net when it’s needed most.” A panel of economists and Ag business members testified that economic conditions for farmers and ranchers continue to get worse, but it’s still not as bad as the farm crisis of the 1980s.

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Senate Passes Bill to Address Potential Agro-Terrorism

The U.S. Senate passed legislation designed to address the potential threat of agro-terrorism and keep the American food supply safe. Ag Committee Chair Pat Roberts co-sponsored the legislation in the Senate and says an attack on the nation’s food supply would cause irreparable damage. “This legislation reaffirms the important role for the Department of Homeland Security in preventing agro-terrorism,” Roberts said. “Agriculture is the backbone of our economy, and the spread of any deadly pathogen among our livestock and plant populations would be deadly,” House Republican Dan Donovan introduced similar legislation in the House, saying “This bill is essential to enhancing our preparedness against possible agro-terrorism and our emergency response measures.  The Securing our Agriculture and Food Act requires the Secretary of Homeland Security (DHS), through the Assistant Secretary for Health Affairs, to lead the government’s efforts to secure our nation’s food, agriculture, and veterinary systems against terrorism and high-risk events. The bill also authorizes the Secretary to collaborate with other agencies to ensure food, agriculture, and animal and human health sectors receive attention and are integrated into the DHS’s domestic preparedness policy initiatives. After House consideration, the bill would head to the president’s desk for his signature.

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Oklahoma Beef Council Embezzler Pleads Guilty

Former Oklahoma Beef Council employee Melissa Mortenson pled guilty this week to embezzling $2.6 million from the beef checkoff over the course of seven years. She now awaits sentencing from the court. The Beef Council Board of Directors says this is a significant step towards bringing the criminal matter to a conclusion. “We are indebted to federal investigators for the speed at which this has moved,” a Board-issued statement says, “We believe this has been due in part to the quality of evidence we have turned over to investigators.” The Board is aggressively pursuing efforts to maximize the $2.68 million dollar restitution awarded by a civil court last month. The board says the matter has been incredibly complicated as it’s moved through civil and criminal courts. They’re limited in the information they can release to the public and will be for a few months as the case moves into the sentencing phase. The Oklahoma Beef Council has taken several steps to strengthen internal mechanisms to ensure accounting integrity and has retained an outside accounting firm to provide additional oversight.

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USDA Revises Angus Certification Requirements

The USDA Ag Marketing Service announced this week that it’s revising the live animal specification used for all Angus Certification Programs. The goal is to reflect changes in cattle genetics and marketing, with the proposals to take effect on July 1. A Meating Place Dot Com article says the revised specifications for phenotypic evaluations require that cattle have a main body that’s solid back with no color behind the shoulder, above the flanks, or breaking the midline behind the shoulder. Those color requirements do exclude the tail. The current requirements (Schedule GLA) say that cattle must be 51 percent black, along with other exclusionary criteria. AMS officials say the current Schedule GLA has served the industry well. “As cattle genetics change over time,” the announcement says, “opportunities for updates should be considered that better reflect the current populations and marketplace.”  The goal of the new requirements is to provide more objective criteria for identifying eligible cattle. The agency also mentioned it’s making the changes in response to a request from beef industry stakeholders.  

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China Issues “Wish List” for U.S. Trade

China has issued a list of concessions that it says can help deliver a “win-win” trade relationship with America. The list is part of a 117-page document released Thursday by the Ministry of Commerce. China would like to improve infrastructure cooperation with the U.S. and accept greater imports of goods ranging from soybeans to aircraft. The report acknowledges the Trump Administration’s grievances with China and with globalization, urging “balanced development” of trade ties in future talks. A 100-day review of the bilateral trade relationship is due to finish up in July. A deal earlier this month allows more U.S. access into the Chinese market for beef, natural gas, and financial services. China would like to increase imports of agricultural products like soybeans and cotton. It would also like to speed up negotiations with the U.S. on traceability, inspection, and quarantine procedures on U.S. beef to be sold in the Chinese market. Bloomberg said the 117-page paper could be seen as China indicating a more stable negotiating environment between the two countries. In return, on the “ask” list, the report argues that the U.S. should stop using the so-called alternative state approach when calculating dumping margins in WTO trade disputes. That would be a big step that could push China toward being considered a market economy by its major trading partners.

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Farm Machinery Markets Beginning to Stabilize

A DTN article says signs are showing that the farm machinery industry is starting to stabilize after prices had been free falling for some time. “We are seeing signs that after several years of steep declines, key agricultural markets may be stabilizing,” says Samuel Allen, John Deere Chairman and CEO. That doesn’t mean farmers have started to replace the equipment bought during the most recent boom years of 2011-2013. Lower sales have led to layoffs, cutbacks, and tighter profit margins at farm equipment manufacturing sites. Sales numbers in the first quarter of 2017 offered some hope. AGCO reported an increase of 6.3 percent in North American sales. John Deere released second quarter sales numbers this week showing net income 62 percent higher than this time last year. However, that number does reflect some cost cutting measures taken by the company in recent months as well as non-ag sales numbers. The under-40 horsepower tractor market has been a bright spot for manufacturers. At the end of this year’s first quarter, sales were up 12 percent over the same time last year.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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05-29-17 CSU Ext ALERT: Wheat Disease Update – Kirk Broders, Plant Pathologist…

CSU Extension - State of Possibilities logo

Allmer Wheat Fields Sec 34 053116

Photo courtesy of The BARN – May 31, 2016

Wheat Disease Update – May 29, 2017

Kirk Broders, Plant Pathologist; Department of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University

Written by: Kirk Broders, Plant Pathologist; Department of Bioagricultural Sciences and Pest Management, Colorado State University; C030 Plant Science Bldg., 1177 Campus Delivery, Fort Collins, CO, 80523-1177; 970-491-0850 (work);  kirk.broders@colostate.edu 

Thanks to several spring rain and snow storms the entire eastern half of Colorado is now drought free (http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu)!  However, with all that moisture comes several foliar pathogens of wheat that are not frequently observed in the state. I visited the CSU variety trial locations near Julesberg, Haxtun, Yuma, Akron and Orchard last week and I notice significant amounts of tan sport (Figure 1), and also found Stagonospora leaf blotch in some areas and the early symptoms of Stagonospora glume blotch (SLB & SGB) (Fig. 2). Stripe rust was also present in these locations, but the disease incidence (% of plants in a field infected) was relatively low. However, I did see my first stripe rust infections on the flag leaf (Fig. 3). Continue reading

The BARN & Colorado Ag News Network is CLOSED in Observance of Memorial Weekend

The BARN and the Colorado Ag News Network will be closed May 27-28-29 in observance of the men and women who gave the ultimate sacrifice for our freedom.

When you gather with your families please take a moment and remember them and their families as well. May God bless and keep them always.

Regular BARN & CoAgNews Network programming will resume on Tuesday, May 30th.

06-26-17 Adams State University and Colorado State University sign MOU to provide agriculture education

Adams State University and Colorado State University sign MOU to provide agriculture education

Adams State University and Colorado State University today launched a new degree program in agriculture. The partnership allows Adams State to offer San Luis Valley-area students the opportunity to study agriculture without leaving their home community by offering agriculture-related courses from CSU, a leading national research university. This program will prepare students for careers on a farm or ranch, or in an agriculture-related business.

“We are very excited about this program and for the opportunity to further serve the educational needs of the San Luis Valley. Our new program will give students a well-built foundation in agricultural sciences,” said Adams State President Beverlee J. McClure.

The program combines face-to-face courses on the Adams State campus with online courses offered through CSU Online. CSU coursework will transfer to Adams State toward a Bachelor of Arts degree in Interdisciplinary Studies: General Agriculture. Students may select from two concentrations, biology and business.

“As the state’s land-grant university, Colorado State has a strong commitment to agricultural research and education focused on feeding our planet,” said Colorado State University President Tony Frank. “Adams State, with its rich regional university tradition, is located in one of the state’s most important agricultural regions. We’re enormously proud to bring these campuses together to leverage our strengths and provide the opportunity of agricultural education to a greater number of talented Colorado students.” Continue reading

05-26-17 REMINDER: 2018 Commodity Classic Trade Show Opens to New Exhibitors June 1

2018 Commodity Classic Trade Show Opens to New Exhibitors June 1

ST. LOUIS (May 26, 2017) — The trade show floor at Commodity Classic—America’s largest farmer-led, farmer-focused convention and trade show—will open to new exhibitors on Thursday, June 1, 2017.  The 2018 Commodity Classic will be held Tuesday, February 28 through Thursday, March 2 in Anaheim, California.

Exhibit space is limited.  For exhibitor information, visit CommodityClassic.com, call 888.447.6734 or email: tradeshow@CommodityClassic.com. Continue reading

05-26-17 2017 WSGA: Environmental Stewardship Tour Scheduled for Wednesday, June 21st at the Garrett Ranch in Casper, Wyo.

2017 Environmental Stewardship Tour Scheduled for Wednesday, June 21st at the Garrett Ranch in Casper, Wyo.

Cheyenne, WYO– The annual Environmental Stewardship Tour, hosted by the Wyoming Stock Growers Association (WSGA), Wyoming Department of Agriculture, and program partner Sand County Foundation, will be held at the Garrett Ranch, outside of Casper, Wyo., Wednesday, June 21st, with registration beginning at 8 AM. Continue reading