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Commercial red meat production for the United States totaled 4.64 billion pounds in October, up 5 percent from the 4.43 billion pounds produced in October 2016.

Beef production, at 2.30 billion pounds, was 4 percent above the previous year. Cattle slaughter totaled 2.80 million head, up 6 percent from October 2016. The average live weight was down 20 pounds from the previous year, at 1,361 pounds.

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11-22-17 RMFU Questions Consequences of Tax Reform

CLICK HERE to learn more about the RMFU and how you can become a member today!

RMFU Questions Consequences of Tax Reform

DENVER, C­olo. ­­– Rocky Mountain Farmers Union, a general farm organization whose members make a living from farming and ranching, is calling on the Congressional delegations in Colorado, New Mexico, and Wyoming to vote no on the proposed Tax Cuts and Jobs Act.

“We are greatly concerned of the potential spending reductions that will be required to offset the reduced revenue and the net negative impact of these tax cuts,” says RMFU President Dr. Dale McCall.  “This could make it impossible to pass a comprehensive farm and food bill in 2018. The proposed cuts that were suggested early this summer would certainly rise to the top once again: slashing crop insurance, weakening the Agricultural Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs, and wholesale reductions to conservation programs. Cuts like this would leave farmers and ranchers without an effective safety net, further hurting an already devastated farm economy.”

Watch all the webcasts archives from the AM Session from the 2017 RMFU Annual Meeting on Livestream, courtesy of The BARN

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11-22-17 CDA: Colorado Explores Market Opportunities with Cuba

Colorado Explores Market Opportunities with Cuba

BROOMFIELD, Colo. – Commissioner of Agriculture, Don Brown, and a Colorado contingent of agricultural companies, manufacturers, and a financial services company have recently returned from Cuba to discuss export/import opportunities with the market. The joint mission, hosted by the Colorado Department of Agriculture and World Trade Center Denver, included representatives from Ardent Mills, the Colorado Farm Bureau, Northern Bean and Feed, the Colorado Wheat Board, Terumo BCT, Geotech Environmental Equipment and Western Union.
“Cuba represents an exciting opportunity to develop new partnerships and new markets for our agricultural economy,” said Commissioner Brown. “The global marketplace continues to be more and more competitive and Colorado’s farmers and ranchers have the high-quality, abundant products to help feed a growing population.”
Watch and listen to CO Ag Commissioner Brown’s comments about the recent trade trip to Cuba from his presentation at the 99th CO Farm Bureau Annual Meeting on Nov 17, 2017…

CLICK HERE to watch on Livestream, courtesy of The BARN

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11-22-17 RMFU Members Focus on Opportunities, Challenges

CLICK HERE to learn more about the RMFU and how you can become a member today!

RMFU Members Focus on Opportunities, Challenges

DENVER, C­olo. ­­–Farmers and ranchers are hopeful future opportunities will boost their bottom lines, yet they face challenges surviving the current severe downturn in the ag economy. That was the reoccurring message of panelists and guest speakers at the annual Rocky Mountain Farmers Union (RMFU) convention held Nov. 17-18 in Denver, Colorado.

RMFU President Dr. Dale McCall told the gathering that the 2018 Farm Bill will have a dramatic impact on agriculture and rural communities. Congress currently is working on rewriting the farm policy. Federal funding and policy priorities could either hurt or help farm or ranch families. McCall said farmers and ranchers need to voice their concerns and recommendations to lawmakers at the state and national levels.  Given the diverse types of agricultural operations across the region, Congress needs to write a comprehensive farm bill, he explained. “We’ve got to be more vocal. Let’s do one additional outreach. Do one more thing that will make a positive impact.”

Watch and listen to the AM Session & exclusive interviews from Friday, Novemeber 17, 2017 @ the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Denver…

CLICK HERE to watch the webcast archives from the RMFU’s Annual Convention on Friday, November 17, courtesy of The BARN

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11-22-17 Colorado Corn Annual Banquet set for December 6th in Burlington

Colorado Corn Annual Banquet set for December 6th in Burlington

Colorado Corn staff and board members are encouraging farmers and all others interested to join the Colorado Corn Administrative Committee (CCAC) and Colorado Corn Growers Association (CCGA) for their upcoming 2017 Annual Banquet, taking place Dec. 6 at the Burlington Community Center.

The event serves as an opportunity to look back on the many accomplishments of the CCAC and CCGA from the past year, and also honor those who went above and beyond for the industry. The event is free and includes dinner.

Please RSVP no later than Friday, Nov. 24, by calling the Colorado Corn office at (970) 351-8201, or by sending an email to across@coloradocorn.com. Those who received Annual Banquet invitations in the mail can also respond by using the enclosed, self-addressed postcard.

2017 CCAC and CCGA Annual Banquet Agenda Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Wednesday, November 22nd

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, November 22nd

Livestock Haulers Granted ELD Waiver

The U.S. Department of Transportation issued livestock haulers a 90-day waiver from a regulation that could have negative effects on animal well-being. The National Pork Producers Council issued a statement in support of the move. On behalf of the pork industry and other livestock haulers, NPPC had requested the waiver from a requirement that certain drivers install Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) on their trucks. The organization also requested an exemption from the waiver, saying the job of transporting livestock and the DOT’s Hours of Service rule are not compatible. Those regulations limit truckers to 11 hours of driving daily, after 10 straight hours off-duty and restrict work time to 14 consecutive hours, which includes non-driving time. “Those regulations make things very difficult for livestock haulers and the animals in their care,” says NPPC president Ken Maschoff, an Illinois pork producer. “This waiver gives the department time to consider our request that truckers transporting hogs, cattle, and other livestock be exempt from the ELD mandate. Drivers transporting livestock have a moral obligation to care for the animals they’re hauling.” The Commercial Motor Vehicle Safety Act, enacted in 2012, mandated that ELDs be installed by December 18 of 2017.  


Senators Want Commerce Secretary to Analyze NAFTA Withdrawal Cost

A bipartisan group of Senators sent a letter this week to Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross, asking the administration to collect a “robust economic analysis” to evaluate how changes to the North American Free Trade Agreement would affect agriculture. The letter says, “It’s imperative that before any changes are made to NAFTA or any other free trade agreement, that economic analysis illustrating the impact on the full supply chain of the industries involved gets looked at. As such, we request an economic analysis that evaluates the impacts to crop and livestock sectors as a result of any change to NAFTA.” America is the world’s top exporter of food and agricultural products. U.S. agriculture depends on access to international markets in which to sell their goods. As the fifth round of the NAFTA negotiations wrapped up today (Tuesday), the senators clearly stated that any changes to U.S. trade policy must be positive for agriculture. That’s especially important because farmers and ranchers have been struggling with lower prices for their products.  


Agriculture Among NAFTA Topics on Final Day

The fifth round of North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations wrapped up today (Tuesday). A Politico report describes the talks as relatively quiet. Canadian negotiators haven’t been making many counteroffers to U.S. proposals. Instead, they’re using closed-door meetings to challenge American proposals with data and to ask for explanations of why the U.S. feels the need for certain things to change. The strategy is reported to be increasingly irritating to U.S. negotiators, who say it does little to advance progress in negotiations. On the last day in Mexico City, negotiators focused on agriculture, technical barriers to trade, auto rules of origin, dispute settlement, and investment. The agriculture industry is still working to convince officials of just how negative the effect on agriculture would be if America withdraws from NAFTA. Russell Boening, Texas Farm Bureau president, spoke before a Senate Finance Subcommittee hearing in San Antonio. He told the officials that exports helped to offset a serious drop in farm income over the last several years. “Due to the current state of the farm economy, a full withdrawal from NAFTA would devastate the entire American Ag community and our nation,” he says. “We must make sure that doesn’t happen.”  


Tyson Building New Tennessee Plant; Kansas on Hold

Tyson Foods announced it will build a chicken-processing plant in western Tennessee. A Drovers’ report says the plant will be up and running by 2019 and will provide more than 1,500 new jobs. The $300 million plant will be built in the city of Humboldt. Tyson had already invested money in Tennesse as it announced an $84 million dollar expansion of its plant in Union City. Tyson chose Humboldt for its new site over several other locations in the state. A similar plant was proposed in Leavenworth County, Kansas, but public backlash over the plant kept the plan from getting any footing. There were three other locations discussed as potential replacement sites. Kansas Department of Agriculture officials issued a statement congratulating Tennessee on the announcement. “We look forward to continuing to work with Tyson as they further evaluate expansion of their poultry business unit growth opportunities,” says Heather Lansdowne, KDA Communications Director. Tyson officials say they are still interested in building a production plant in Kansas but those plans don’t look to be happening in the near future.


Peterson Likes Senate Tax Bill Better Than House Version

House Ag Committee ranking member Collin Peterson says the Senate tax bill is closer to something he can support than the House Bill. The Minnesota Democrat hopes changes will be made so he can support the conference report. Peterson tells the Hagstrom Report that he supports lowering corporate tax rates but not at the expense of raising taxes on individuals. He also supports raising the exemption on the estate tax but not eliminating it. He wants the provision allowing co-ops to pass along production and marketing cost tax breaks to their members to continue. The current House and Senate bills both eliminate the provision, known as Section 199. “Co-ops don’t pay income taxes and therefore, if this is taken out, the co-ops get nothing from this bill,” Peterson says. “Also, the provisions to eliminate or reduce the deduction for the state and local taxes are a problem and I’ve heard about it from my constituents.” He’s in favor of eliminating the individual insurance mandate under the Affordable Care Act but says that cutting it out will make passing a tax bill that much more difficult. The White House has said the Trump administration understands that particular provision may have to be taken out of the legislation to pass the bill.


China Is The New Top Buyer of American Agricultural Goods

New numbers out this week show that China is the new number one buyer of American agricultural goods. Pork Business Dot Com says the fiscal year 2017 numbers show that China bought $22 billion worth of agricultural products, which is a large jump from the $19.2 billion purchased the year before. That jump meant China moved into the number one customer spot. America’s NAFTA partners were number two and three on the list. Second-place Canada bought $20.4 billion worth of goods, a slight jump over the previous year. Number three Mexico bought six percent more goods in the fiscal year 2017, coming in at $18.6 billion. USDA says the total number of exports jumped $10 billion dollars, coming in at $140.5 billion, the third-highest on record. Farmers produced another record corn crop and the protein sector continues to expand, so it’s going to take expanded exports to chew through the extra product that’s available.  Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue says the ag sector posted an annual trade surplus of $21.3 billion, an amazing 30 percent rise over the previous year.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service