01-22-18 This week is Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week…

This week is Tax Identity Theft Awareness Week…

Written by: Gisele Jefferson,  Family and Consumer Sciences,  CSU Extension

Yes, it is alarming; the Equifax data breach may have exposed more than half the adults in this country to identity theft and financial fraud.  Names, social security numbers, birthdates, and other information including some credit card numbers were stolen from their data system.  During the first half of 2017 there were 791 separate data breaches; and the Identity Theft Resource Center estimated there would be over 1,500 total by the end of the year.  We should all be on High Alert!  Continue reading

01-22-18 Mark your calendar for the 2018 Ag Day at the Colorado State Capitol – March 22nd!

Mark your calendar for the 2018 Ag Day at the Colorado State Capitol

2018 Colorado Ag Day
March 22, 2018
11:00-1:00pm at the Colorado State Capitol in the North & West Foyers

Please join Colorado Agriculture Council in celebrating local agriculture teamed up with the Colorado Chefs Association.

Questions? Contact David Collie
david@collieconsultingllc.com

To check out videos from the 2017 CO Ag Day at the Capitol please visit https://livestream.com/BarnMedia/events/4998258

Why Celebrate Colorado Ag Day?

Continue reading

01-22-18 Inside CALP with Dani Traweek: 2018 Gov’s Forum , Class 13 & More…

Inside CALP with Executive Director Dani Traweek…

2018 Gov’s Forum on Colorado Agriculture, Class 13 & More

(The BARN – Briggsdale, CO) December 20, 2017 – The 27th annual Governor’s Forum on Colorado Agriculture is scheduled for February 21, 2018 at the Renaissance Hotel & Convention Center in Denver, CO, and it brings together all facets of Colorado’s agriculture, including ag producers, support industry reps, political leaders, as well as consumers. Joining the CO Ag News Network to discuss the event in more detail is Dani Traweek, Executive Director of the Colorado Agricultural Leadership Program…

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For more information about the Forum, and a complete program, please visit  http://www.governorsagforum.com/. And to learn more about Class 13 and the Colorado Agricultural Leadership Program, please visit www.coloagleaders.org

01-22-18 NFU Urges Increased Funding for Farm Safety Net, Releases Priorities for Farm Bill

March 3-6, 2018

NFU Farm Bill Priorities 012518.pngFarmers Union Urges Increased Funding for Farm Safety Net, Releases Priorities for Farm Bill

WASHINGTON – Given the persistent and ongoing economic challenges in farming and rural economies, National Farmers Union (NFU) is calling on Congress to increase funding for farm programs in the farm bill and pass the legislation as soon as possible. The NFU Board of Directors recently passed a resolution to this effect, outlining requirements for a farm bill that family farmers and ranchers can support.

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“American farmers are not only suffering from price pressure that has reduced net farm income by half over the last four years, but devastating wildfires, hurricanes, and other natural disasters continue to punish agricultural communities,” said the Board. “Trade policies continue to promote the sale of farm products at prices below the cost of production. Farm bill legislation in 2018 must strengthen the safety net so that farmers and ranchers can manage risk, stay in business and continue to feed our country.” Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Monday, January 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 Monday, January 22nd

Government Shutdown Continues, Senate Inching Towards Compromise

The government shutdown has entered its third day, with a vote planned for Noon Eastern Time today (Monday) to end debate and move forward to a stop-gap funding bill. The shutdown appears to loom on a group of roughly 20 Senators who have yet to find compromise and agree to vote for a spending measure, with some Senators expressing optimism Sunday that the shutdown would be short-lived. Meanwhile, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue said in a statement that “USDA is committed to safeguarding life and property through the critical services” provided by the federal agency. Those include food inspections through the Food Safety and Inspection Service, import controls, core nutrition programs, and keeping Rural Development offices open in Puerto Rico and the Virgin Islands. USDA says crop insurance services will continue, and indemnity payments will continue to be made. The U.S. Forest Service will continue emergency and defense preparedness, including fire suppression. Select services through the Agricultural Marketing Service will continue, and the North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations will be supported and maintained.

The complete list is available here: https://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/USDAOC/bulletins/1d2c8dd
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Farm Futures Releases 2018 Planting Intentions Survey Results

Farm Futures magazine recently released its survey of 2018 planting intentions, which shows that farmers aren’t quite ready to make major changes to their crop rotations. However, they are going to plant more of what paid best in 2017. For the first time since 1983, farmers want to plant more soybeans than corn. Back then, the government’s PIK program idled millions of corn acres, but even then the difference was just 35,000 acres. Growers are planning to put in 90.1 million acres of crops this year, not much different than in 2017. Farm Futures is projecting more wheat planting this year, saying farmers are ready to put in 11.8 million acres of spring wheat, up 6.7 percent from last year. The first Farm Futures survey of 2018 planting intentions showed farmers wanting to boost corn acres and cut back on soybeans, but price relationships have changed quite a bit in the last four months. Cotton farmers also intend to raise the amount of planted acres to 13.2 million, a five percent jump. Cotton was one of the few bright spots in the crop community in 2017. Farm Futures did say that all of this information could be subject to change based on changing prices and the weather.

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Former Ag Secretary says Trump Understands Importance of NAFTA

Trade negotiators are gearing up for the next round of talks on the North American Free Trade Agreement in Canada. Some industry stakeholders are frustrated because they feel not enough progress has been made so far. Mike Johanns, a former Ag Secretary, says, “So far, the negotiations really haven’t gone anywhere.” There are stakeholders in agriculture who wonder if the president really understands how important NAFTA is to the rural community, but Johanns is one who feels the president now understands just how vital it is. “My take is the president has certainly come to realize just how important NAFTA is in parts of the country that supported him in his run for office,” Johanns says. “The key issue for the president is going to be how he can come up with something that saves face and doesn’t blow this thing up.” Johanns, also a former U.S. Senator, says pulling out of NAFTA could be devastating for American agriculture. “In the real world, this is so very important to the average farmer or rancher that’s out there just trying to make a living,” he says. “There’s a good story to tell, we just need more people out there telling it.”

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Mexican Ambassador says NAFTA Negotiations Are Making Progress

The Mexican Ambassador to Washington tells Bloomberg that the U.S., Canada, and Mexico have general agreement on 40 percent of the topics being renegotiated in the NAFTA talks. Geronimo Gutierrez says Mexico may also be willing to accept an increase in the minimum regional content for automobiles traded under the deal. Gutierrez says Mexico is focusing on increasing employment, something that’s also important to the U.S. However, he also told Bloomberg that Mexico will walk away from the bargaining table if President Trump gives notice of his intention to withdraw from NAFTA. The U.S. demand for more North American content, specifically American content, in vehicles, is one of the most contentious issues to this point. Negotiators have largely avoided this and other contentious issues like government procurement, which means the negotiations in Canada could be very important to the final outcome. The talks in Canada are scheduled to run from January 23 through January 28. The Mexican Economy Minister also says that negotiations are almost complete on 10 of the 20 chapters in NAFTA.

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Arkansas Lawmakers OK Dicamba Ban

Arkansas lawmakers approved, without discussion, a partial-ban on a herbicide that drifts on to other crops where it wasn’t applied and causes damage. An Associated Press report says the prohibition faces a court challenge by the maker of the weed killer. The Legislative Council approved the Arkansas Plant Board’s plan to ban dicamba use from April 15 through October 31. The Council is the legislature’s governing body when lawmakers aren’t in session. Earlier this week, a subcommittee recommended the council approve the ban. The Plant Board first proposed the ban after receiving over 1,000 complaints about dicamba. Monsanto is a maker of dicamba and has asked a state judge to prevent the restriction from going into effect. Arkansas is one of many states that have gotten complaints about dicamba drifting into adjacent fields from the ones it was directly applied to, causing damage in soybeans that aren’t resistant to the herbicide.  

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NPPC Supports New Pork Inspection Model

The National Pork Producers Council strongly supports the U.S. Department of Agriculture in finalizing a new pork processing inspection rule. The USDA’s Food Safety and Inspection Service will expand its current HAACP Inspection Model from five current pilot locations to full-scale implementation. NPPC President Ken Maschoff says, “We support the decision to advance HIMP as it introduces new pork production efficiencies while encouraging the deployment of new food safety technologies in packing plants.” He says the pilot program was very successful and expanding the program is another step in the industry’s ongoing focus to continually improve the safety of America’s food at an efficient cost. The new inspection model assigns increased inspection responsibility to plant operators, which allows the USDA to dedicate its resources to general oversight of food safety standards and the overall inspection process. Plants can choose to adopt the HIMP model or continue to operate under the current inspection system. Maschoff adds that “The U.S. pork industry is the most competitive in the world because we’ve built a reputation for quality, affordability, and food safety. We applaud the USDA for taking this step to strengthen our competitive position.”

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Cornyn Drawing Up RFS Overhaul Legislation

Texas Republican John Cornyn (Kohr-Nihn) is drawing up legislation to overhaul the Renewable Fuels Standard. It’s his attempt to end the disagreement between corn-state lawmakers and oil-patch legislators. Cornyn’s office has been hosting talks for several months on altering the nation’s biofuels program and come up with a variety of policy ideas, although they haven’t narrowed down any of the choices yet. A few of the policy ideas range from creating national octane standards to creating new supports for cellulosic ethanol or even further subdividing the system for biofuel credits. Cornyn says his goal is to build enough consensus that the legislation will eventually become the basis for an RFS reform bill. Corn-state senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa says he’s still skeptical of Cornyn’s efforts. “I’m skeptical about the effort coming out of Texas that’s been going on for more than a year-and-a-half will be able to find a proposal that is acceptable to stakeholders on all sides of the issue,” he says. “However, they do deserve some credit for taking the time to learn and appreciate the economics of the renewable fuels industry.”

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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