12-22-17 USDA Issues Permit for Santa’s Reindeer

USDA Issues Permit for Santa’s Reindeer

WASHINGTON, Dec. 22, 2017 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) today issued a movement permit to Mr. S. Claus of the North Pole, a broker with Worldwide Gifts, Unlimited. The permit will allow reindeer to enter and exit the United States between the hours of 7 p.m. December 24, 2017 and 7 a.m. December 25, 2017, through or over any U.S. border port.

“It’s the season of giving and joy. Here at USDA we don’t want anything to delay these very important reindeer at our borders,” said Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue. “We know that children all over the country – including my own fourteen grandchildren – are eagerly awaiting a visit from Mr. Claus and his team before they wake on Christmas morning. USDA issued this permit in advance and waived all applicable fees to help ensure a smooth trip on Christmas Eve night.” Continue reading

12-22-17 National Search Underway for Colorado State Fair General Manager

National Search Underway for Colorado State Fair General Manager

BROOMFIELD, Colo. – Preparations for the 2018 Colorado State Fair are well underway as the Colorado Department of Agriculture begins a national search for a new Fair division director. Sarah Cummings, the Fair’s general manager since 2015, has accepted the executive director position for the Western Fairs Association headquartered in California.
“Managing the 12-month event calendar for the fairgrounds and organizing the 11-day Colorado State Fair is a tremendous undertaking. Sarah Cummings has made positive changes and I’m looking forward to the next General Manager building on that momentum,” said Don Brown, CDA’s Commissioner of Agriculture. “This position handles more than an annual event. There are year-round activities that must be developed and organized while also staying committed to promoting Colorado agriculture and supporting Colorado youth.”

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12-22-17 Inside the Angus Foundation with President Milford Jenkins…

Inside the Angus Foundation with President Milford Jenkins…

2018 NWSS Angus Bull Sale on Jan 10th benefits Angus Foundation

DECEMBER 22, 2017 – Joining the CO Ag News Network at this time by telephone is Milford H. Jenkins, Angus Foundation President discuss Angus activities during the 112th NWSS in January…


To find out more about the Angus Foundation, the programs it supports, or how to make a donation, please contact:

Angus Foundation

3201 Frederick Avenue, St. Joseph, MO 64506

Phone 816-383-5100 or Fax 816-233-9703

or visit http://www.angusfoundation.org/fdn/index.html

To learn more about the 2018 NWSS Angus Bull Sale & Angus Foundation Heifer Package, check out the original press release from December 12, 2017 below… Continue reading

12-22-17 New Employees at Colorado Wheat: Madison Anderson & Tyler Benninghoven

Colorado Wheat is pleased to announce that we have filled the positions of Seed and Trait Specialist and Communications Coordinator

Tyler Benninghoven will begin serving as Seed and Trait Specialist in February 2018.  Tyler earned his Bachelor of Science degree in Soil and Crop Science from Colorado State University in 2008, with a Minor in Soil Resource Conservation.  Tyler’s main responsibility will be to manage and promote PlainsGold wheat varieties, which are developed at Colorado State University, with ownership assigned to Colorado Wheat Research Foundation.  Additionally, Tyler will participate in the launch and adoption of the CoAXiumTM Wheat Production System, a new herbicide tolerance trait in wheat, and represent PlainsGold at regional Field Days, industry meetings, and trade shows.  Tyler is a Certified Crop Advisor, licensed Commercial Applicator, and licensed Ag Chemical Dealer, who most recently was Regional Sales Manager of Town and Country Supply Association in Billings, Montana.

Madison Andersen will begin serving as Communications Coordinator on January 8, 2018.  Madison earned her Bachelor of Science degree in Agricultural Communications from Oklahoma State University in May 2016, with a Minor in Marketing.  Madison will implement communication strategies for all three Colorado Wheat organizations, including development of print and electronic newsletter content, and delivery of information through the Coloradowheat.org website and social media channels.  Madison most recently acted as Communications Specialist at the Adams County Clerk and Recorder’s office in Brighton, Colorado, and brings experience from working as Production Assistant for the Oklahoma Gardening Television Show  and intern for the Colorado Independent Cattle Growers Association.

Welcome, Tyler and Madison to the Colorado Wheat team! Continue reading

12-22-17 USDA Announces Dairy Board Appointments

Header Press Release

USDA Announces Dairy Board Appointments

WASHINGTON, Dec. 22, 2017 – Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue today announced the appointment of 13 individuals, including 12 dairy producers and one importer, to serve three-year terms on the National Dairy Promotion and Research Board. Their terms begin immediately and end on Oct. 31, 2020.

Newly appointed producers are: Continue reading

12-22-17 CFVGA Asks Senators Bennet & Gardner to Fix Foreign Worker Program NOW

CFVGA Asks Senators Bennet & Gardner to Fix Foreign Worker Program NOW

The Colorado Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association (CFVGA) met last week with the staff of Sen. Michael Bennet, D-Colo., and with Sen. Cory Gardner, R-Colo., to appeal for quick legislative action to fix the current foreign worker program before the 2018 growing season. The appeal comes as Colorado fruit and vegetable growers contemplate if they can continue to grow produce given the extreme labor shortage of qualified and willing farm laborers.

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READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Friday, December 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 Friday, December 22nd

Setting Aside Money In Case of NAFTA Failure?

A Politico report shows just how worried some lawmakers are about the potential failure of the North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations. Officials began talking on Tuesday about putting together a potential bailout of sorts for farmers. During a conference call Tuesday morning, Iowa Republican Senator Chuck Grassley said he was going to ask U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer about the rumors in Washington of money being put together and set aside to help farmers in case the NAFTA negotiations fall apart. Grassley says, “I’ve heard rumors that people in the bureaucracy are trying to anticipate what we are going to do to protect small farmers from drops in prices should the U.S. pull out of NAFTA. There’s some talk going around about potentially putting together a pot of money we could use to support prices in case of a collapse resulting from a NAFTA withdrawal.” Grassley says government assistance is the last thing the agriculture industry wants. “Farmers don’t want more money from the federal treasury,” he adds, “they want their money to come from the marketplace.”


Groups Want Tax-Extender Bill Passed in 2017

More than 50 groups representing a wide scope of businesses sent a letter this week to Congress asking for approval of a multi-year extension of a series of expired tax credits. The groups attaching their names to the letter represent energy, agriculture, business, transportation, and real estate. The groups, which include the American Farm Bureau and National Biodiesel Board, say those temporary tax provisions, which expired last year, represent a number of vital American industries and support thousands of jobs. The letter says extending those provisions allows businesses to make plans for the new year. Not extending the credits only creates confusion in the marketplace, which basically increases taxes on a number of industries that create a lot of jobs and promote economic growth. The letter was sent to leadership in the House and Senate, plus the leadership of the House Ways and Means Committee and Senate Finance Committee. North Dakota Republican John Hoeven is the Chair of the Senate Finance Committee. He told Agri-Pulse that action on the bill will likely be delayed until early next year.


Infrastructure Overhaul Talks to Begin in January

South Dakota Republican John Thune, Chair of the Senate Commerce Committee, will be very involved with  President Trump’s $1 billion plan to overhaul the nation’s infrastructure in January. A Pro Transportation report says Thune, a rural-state senator, has valuable insights on what farmers and Ag businesses will be looking for in infrastructure investments. Thune says there were few problems with the president’s approach to updating the nation’s infrastructure. He says the bigger question is how the nation will fund it. “There are probably some states that could do more (in terms of funding),” he says, “but I think if states are willing to step up and become bigger partners in the project, there should be some kind of matching benefit to that.” In terms of funding, he told Pro Transportation that, “As a conservative, I think you should be offended by the idea of borrowing money to pay for infrastructure. If we’re going to build things in this country, we need to figure out a way to pay for it.” He thinks lawmakers should be willing to listen to other people’s ideas about how the country will go about paying for such a large project.


Perdue Applauds USDA Accomplishments in 2017

Ag Secretary Sonny Perdue talked about the accomplishments of the U.S. Department of Agriculture during the first year of the Trump Administration. He says the USDA made breakthroughs on agricultural trade, made strides in reducing burdensome regulations, responded to natural disasters, and battled through the worst fire season on record. Perdue says, “As 2017 comes to an end, the hard-working civil servants who make up the USDA have a great deal to be proud of.” Stakeholder outreach is a big area of improvement. Since taking the job, Secretary Perdue has visited 30 states and six foreign countries. Perdue also took several steps to reorganize the USDA, including the creation of the first-ever Undersecretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs. He points out that USDA scored a significant victory on the agricultural trade front with American beef re-entering China after an 11-year ban on those imports. U.S. rice also made its first appearance in China, and European Union regulations on U.S. citrus imports were also relaxed during 2017. USDA also responded to concerns by restoring flexibility for the nation’s schools when it came to the national school lunch and breakfast programs.


Hops Industry Toasting This Holiday Season

There’s an awful lot for the hops industry to be toasting to this holiday season. The USDA Economic Research Service released numbers this week showing that hops production in Idaho, Oregon, and Washington jumped 20 percent this year to a record 104 million pounds. While there are other states that produce hops, those three states account for the bulk of the nation’s production. The total number of harvested acres in those three states climbed five percent to 53,282 acres in 2017. The nation’s top hops yield reached 1,959 pounds per acre in 2017, up 246 pounds from last season. The Hops Growers of America says recent trends show that the crop is on track to double its production acreage in just five years. To put it in perspective, the number of acres the U.S. has added in the past five years is larger than the total acreage of most of the other hops-growing countries around the world.  


Foreign Ag Service Contributes to Export Success

International trade was an economic driver for rural America in 2017. U.S. farm and food exports totaled $140.5 billion for the fiscal year, which is the third-highest number on record. USDA Foreign Ag Service Acting Administrator Holly Higgins says she’s proud of the role her agency plays in promoting exports. “Those exports generate 20 percent of U.S. farm income, stimulate rural economic activity, and support more than a million American jobs.” Her agency’s efforts to break barriers and overcome trade obstacles led to many trade successes in 2017, including American beef and rice exports heading to China. Other new or expanded market access for American farm products include poultry and eggs going to South Korea, rice to Columbia, and dried distiller’s grain to Vietnam. FAS is also helping agribusinesses to expand their reach around the globe. The agency organized trade missions to Egypt, Brazil, and India this year. Those missions led to more than $30 million in 12-month projected sales estimates of more than $2.35 billion for participating companies. 

SOURCE: NAFB News Service