05-31-18 NFU: Family Farmers Likely the First Casualty if Trump Administration Provokes Global Trade War

NFU: Family Farmers Likely the First Casualty if Trump Administration Provokes Global Trade War

WASHINGTON – In a move that has already provoked retaliatory measures, the Trump administration today announced its intention to impose a 25 percent tariff on steel and a 10 percent tariff on aluminum imports from the European Union, Canada, and Mexico, effective midnight Thursday.

National Farmers Union (NFU), a grassroots, producer-driven organization, has long advocated fair and transparent trade policies that reduce the U.S. trade deficit and support family farmers and ranchers. In response to the announcement, National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson released the following statement:

“Unfettered free trade has characterized U.S. trade relationships for many decades, often at substantial cost to our farmers and ranchers and our nation’s economy. Though we agree with President Trump’s inclination to address unfair trading practices and reduce our trade deficit, provoking a global trade war with our closest allies hardly seems like a solution. Continue reading

05-31-18 Colorado Weekly Hay Report…

05-31-18 Farmer’s Business Network, Inc. Launches Commodity Crop Marketing Platform

Farmer’s Business Network, Inc. Launches Commodity Crop Marketing Platform

The network provides a extensive, data-driven and independent suite of marketing services to help farmers make better marketing decisions. All at a price within the reach of most farmers.

FBN BR LLC joins FBN family of companies as licensed independent introducing brokerage.

San Carlos, Calif. – May 31, 2018 – Farmer’s Business Network, Inc., the independent farmer-to-farmer network, together with its affiliate companies, today announced the launch of its Commodity Crop Marketing platform to help farmers make better decisions when marketing their grain.

For many farmers, crop marketing is notoriously stressful and time-consuming. Information is available, but it’s often hard to know what’s important versus what’s noise. It’s even harder to turn that information into accurate decision making. Farmer’s Business Network, Inc. is looking to help reduce farmers’ marketing pain points and make better decisions.

“After talking to hundreds of members, farmers kept telling us they wanted more marketing support but it needed to be affordable.” said Devin Lammers, Head of FBN Commodity Crop Marketing. “FBN Commodity Crop Marketing provides an extensive and affordable suite of crop marketing services that can help farmers make better decisions through data driven, personalized, and actionable advice, and take action on those decisions through independent cash contracts and brokerage.” Continue reading

05-31-18 USDA Reopens Application Period for Producers Recovering from Cattle Loss, Other Disasters

USDA Reopens Application Period for Producers Recovering from Cattle Loss, Other Disasters

Signup Begins June 4 for Livestock Indemnity Program and Emergency Assistance for Livestock, Honey Bees, and Farm-raised Fish

WASHINGTON, May 31, 2018 — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will begin accepting disaster assistance program applications on June 4 from agricultural producers who suffered livestock, honeybees, farm-raised fish and other losses due to natural disasters.

USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) is reopening the application period for two disaster assistance programs in response to statutory changes made by Congress earlier this year.

“When disasters hit, help is as close as your USDA service center,” said Bill Northey, Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation. “After any catastrophic event, an eligible producer can walk into any one of our local offices and apply for help.” Continue reading

05-31-18 Pro 15 to Host Transportation Summit in Holyoke, CO on June 21st

Pro 15 to Host Transportation Summit

*CORRECTED* Pro 15 will be hosting a transportation summit on the morning of June 21, 2018, from 8:30 am to 11:30 am at the Phillips County Event Center in Holyoke, Colorado. This event is free to those attending who do not want to stay for lunch. There is a $25 fee for those who wish to stay for lunch for further discussion and to listen to HD Candidate Rod Pelton.

Continue reading

05-31-18 U.S. Grains Council Statement On Section 232 Tariffs On Mexico, Canada And The European Union

U.S. Grains Council Statement On Section 232 Tariffs On Mexico, Canada And The European Union

Thomas N. Sleight, New President & CEO, US Grains Council

Washington, D.C. – A statement from U.S. Grains Council President and CEO Tom Sleight:

“The U.S. Grains Council is deeply concerned about new tariffs set to be implemented at midnight on steel and aluminum from Mexico, Canada and the European Union, three key markets for U.S. grain and related products.

“Based on information we have heard from our customers and past experience, we have every reason to believe U.S. agriculture, including the products we represent, will be among the first hit by counter measures from our trading partners.

“These countries are among our closest neighbors and friends. We have spent years building markets in these countries based on a mutual belief that increasing trade benefits all parties. Continue reading

05-31-18 History CO: Preservation Grant Workshops Coming Soon!

History CO: Preservation Grant Workshops Coming Soon!

EARN FUNDING FOR LOCAL HISTORIC PRESERVATION PROJECTS
LEARN HOW TO SAVE YOUR LOCAL HISTORY
History Colorado State Historical Fund outreach staff will visit communities across the state to educate potential applicants about our archaeology and preservation grant program. Join us for a workshop outlining grant application basics and an in-depth discussion of your project, or find us at a conference near you!

05-31-18 THE INTERNATIONAL DAIRY FEDERATION SUPPORTS THE WORLD MILK DAY

THE INTERNATIONAL DAIRY FEDERATION SUPPORTS THE WORLD MILK DAY

World Milk Day on 1 June celebrates the  benefits of milk and dairy products which are part of a sustainable and nutritious diet which contributes towards reducing hunger and alleviating poverty.

The Dairy Declaration of Rotterdam is a strong commitment and recognition by the dairy sector and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) on the positive contributions of dairy to the UN Development Goals, said Dr Judith Bryans, President of the International Dairy Federation (IDF).

The dairy industry helps to feed the world. Milk is a great source of high quality proteins, essential vitamins and minerals, providing billions of people with nutritional benefits,” Dr Bryans stated. “Milk is an important component of a balanced diet and healthy lifestyle, and contributes to over-all wellbeing.Continue reading

05-31-18 Learn more about the changes to SAM & DUNS from NRCS-CO’s Elizabeth With…

Learn more about the changes to SAM & DUNS from NRCS-CO’s Elizabeth With…

(The BARN / FarmCast Radio – Briggsdale, CO) May 31, 2018 – Effectively immediately, farmers who participate in Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) financial assistance programs as part of a business entity will no longer need a Dun and Bradstreet Universal Number System (DUNS) number, or to register in the System for Award Management (SAM).

Joining FarmCast Radio and the Colorado Ag News Network to discuss that in more detail is Elizabeth With from the Natural Resources Conservation Service out of Gunnison, CO…

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CLICK HERE to view the USDA’s DUNS & SAM UPDATE

Continue reading

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

Ethanol Coalition Sues EPA Over Secretive RFS Waivers

An ethanol coalition has filed suit against the Environmental Protection Agency in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. The Renewable Fuels Association, the Advanced Coalition for Ethanol, National Corn Growers, and the National Farmers Union are suing the EPA to challenge several waivers to the Renewable Fuels Standard, given out in secret to several profitable refineries. The groups are challenging three specific decisions that were made under clandestine conditions. The EPA gave exemptions to refineries in Oklahoma, Wyoming, and Utah. The companies that own the three refineries have estimated in financial disclosures that the exemptions saved them roughly $170 million in costs. The petitioners aren’t challenging the EPA’s authority to grant the waivers. They’re challenging these three decisions as specific abuses of the EPA’s authority. Bob Dineen, CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association, says the EPA is trying to undermine the RFS under the cover of night. Brian Jennings, CEO of ACE, says the EPA left them no choice but to file suit. “They’re distorting the intent of the law by granting secret hardship waivers under the cover of night,” says Jennings. “We cannot sit by and allow the EPA to violate the RFS, which requires increasing the use of renewable fuels in the U.S.”

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Producers Getting Whiplash from Trade Back-and-Forth

American producers are suffering from dizziness, thanks to the back-and-forth headlines regarding the U.S.-China trade dispute. Tuesday, the Trump Administration announced it was moving ahead with plans for protecting intellectual U.S. property. Politico says the administration will take steps to impose 25-percent tariffs on $50 billion worth of Chinese imports, plus, establish broad investment restrictions and pursue litigation with the World Trade Organization. But what’s real and what isn’t? Michelle Erickson-Jones, president of the Montana Grain Growers Association, says, “It’s so hard to tell what’s rhetoric and what’s real, though it would surprise me if we went forward with these tariffs.” The level of uncertainty caused by the U.S.-China conflict, as well as the North American Free Trade Agreement negotiations, is hard on commodity markets. It also jeopardizes relationships with overseas commodity buyers. Jones says countries are already looking for other buyers. As an example, she points out that Mexico recently purchased wheat from Argentina for the first time in modern history. In spite of the president’s recent tendency to back down on threats against China, they still have to be taken seriously because the country is such an important market for American farmers. Kevin Paap (pap), Minnesota Farm Bureau President, says “It’s an emotional issue for soybean growers. China is our safety net.”  

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Trade Retaliation Already Hurting Pork Producers

The National Pork Producers called for a swift resolution to the U.S.-China trade dispute because pork producers are feeling the pain. Iowa State University Economist Dermot Hayes says U.S. pork farmers have lost $2.2 billion on an annualized basis. The losses are a direct result of the events leading up to and following China’s 25 percent punitive tariffs in retaliation for U.S. tariffs on aluminum and steel. Jim Heimerl (HI-merle), NPPC President, says U.S. pork has invested significant funds into ramping up pork production in order to take advantage of opportunities around the world, which include China and other markets throughout the Asia-Pacific region. NPPC applauds the president for making agriculture exports a cornerstone in the negotiations with China. “Since March first, when speculation about Chinese retaliation against U.S. pork first started,” Hayes says, “hog futures have dropped by $18 an animal. That translates to a $2.2 billion loss on an annualized basis.” Hayes adds that, while not all of the lost value can be attributed directly to the trade friction between China and the U.S., it certainly is the main factor. The market disruption that’s being caused by the trade uncertainty comes at a time when American pork production is expanding to record levels.

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Brazil Trucker Strike Disrupting Ag Exports

The Brazilian trucker strike has officially disrupted supply and exports of farm products from one of the biggest ag exporting countries in the world. A Reuters report says Brazil is the top exporter of soybeans, sugar, coffee, and chickens. The strike over high fuel prices has brought Latin America’s largest economy to a complete stop. Roads are empty and major cities are short on food, gasoline, and medical supplies. However, the strike has also had devastating impacts on livestock. Tens of millions of chickens have been killed because feed supplies have failed. If they begin to starve, chickens will start eating each other, so meatpackers have had to cull their flocks quickly. Some 70 million chickens had died as of Monday. Poultry and pork processing association ABPA says the country has lost 120,000 tons of potential exports since the trucker strike began. Brazil is the world’s largest chicken exporter, supplying a third of all shipments around the world.

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Humane Society of the U.S. Rating is Downgraded Again

An Ag Web Dot Com article says 2018 has been a rough year for the Humane Society of the United States. A third charity watchdog has downgraded HSUS. CharityWatch lowered the Humane Society of the U.S. to a D rating in its most recent rankings, thanks in part to its highly inefficient spending practices. The downgrade comes just a few months after HSUS CEO Wayne Pacelle resigned following sexual harassment allegations against him that prompted an uprising from HSUS staff and donors. Earlier this year, Charity Navigator downgraded HSUS, and the BBB Wise Giving Alliance revoked its accreditation of the Humane Society. CharityWatch says it made the decision after learning that 48 percent of the HSUS budget is spent on overhead costs. Humanewatch.org says, “The Humane Society cloaks millions of dollars in overhead as program costs.” Essentially, what HSUS is doing is counting fundraising material as educational costs. Back in February, Animal Charity Evaluators rescinded its HSUS recommendation because “ACE considers ethical leadership and a healthy work environment to be important components for an effective charity.”

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Nation’s Number Two Milk Processor Continues to Close Plants

Dean Foods, the nation’s number-two milk producer behind Nestle, continues to shutter businesses in cost-cutting moves. Milk Business Dot Com says supply-and-demand economics appears to be the driving force behind the downsizing. U.S. milk production is continuing to climb as the demand for fluid milk wanes. That’s been hard on Dean’s bottom line as the company reported a year-over-year eight percent drop in gross profit during the fourth quarter of 2017, as well as a four percent drop in the first quarter of this year. Company share prices have dropped more than 50 percent in the last 12 months. The latest Dean Foods plants to close were in Pennsylvania and Massachusetts. Earlier this year, Dean also notified more than 100 producers that their milk contracts would be terminated on May 31. At the time of the announcement, Dean Foods cited a “surplus of raw milk at a time when the public is already consuming less fluid milk.” When the contract announcement was made, Dean Foods also acknowledged that more consolidation was on the way.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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05-30-18 Family Farm Alliance: 2018 Farmer Lobbyists Engage D.C. Policymakers

2018 Farmer Lobbyists Engage D.C. Policymakers

A group of Family Farm Alliance members spent three days walking the halls of Congress and downtown Washington, D.C., meeting with Trump Administration officials, Members of Congress, and Congressional staffers as part of the Alliance 2018 Farmer Lobbyist trip.

“The Alliance’s D.C. fly-in is one of our “cornerstone” programs which brings family farmers and water professionals to Washington, D.C. to meet with legislators and Administration policy leaders on critical water issues,” said Alliance President Pat O’Toole. “The Alliance philosophy has long held that the most effective voice in Washington DC is the individual family farmer.”

Click here to read more about this year’s trip, as well as the following articles of interest to Western water users: Continue reading

05-30-18 NE Extension – Field Days  – June 18-19-20

NE Extension – Field Days  – June 18-19-20

Nebraska Extension Field Days will be held this June at several locations across NE and are free to attend. The event will provide a diverse learning experience and great networking opportunity for farmers and agribusinesses.

During the field visits, participants will be able to learn more about different varieties of wheat, field peas, chickpeas and forages. Depending on the location, field visits will also include other specialty crops (i.e. lentils, winter canola, forages, cover crops) and demonstrations of different agronomic practices such as planting dates, seeding rates, fertilizer management, etc.

Besides field visits, field days will feature indoor sessions that will include a free lunch, a 30 minute networking sessions, and brief research updates. Networking sessions will allow participants to meet with seed, processing, and marketing businesses critical to pulse crop industry development in NE. Research updates will include pulse crops production and marketing, topics on incorporating cover crops in wheat and field peas cropping systems, and wheat production with a focus on management for higher yield and grain protein.

The following are the field day locations with directions to the research plots: Continue reading

05-30-18 Inside CCALT w/Executive Director Erik Glenn…

CLICK HERE to learn more about CCALT

Inside CCALT w/Executive Director Erik Glenn

Division of Conservation, Conservation Easements, Upcoming Events & More…

(The BARN / FarmCast Radio Briggsdale, CO May 30, 2018 – Joining the CO Ag News Network to talk about conservation easements is Colorado Agricultural Land Trust’s Executive Director Erik Glenn, discussing several topics including:

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05-30-18 Dairy Farmers Have Until June 1 to Apply for Improved Safety Net under Margin Protection Program

Dairy Farmers Have Until June 1 to Apply for Improved Safety Net under Margin Protection Program

WASHINGTON, May 25, 2018 — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) reminds dairy farmers of the June 1 deadline to enroll in the improved Margin Protection Program for Dairy (MPPDairy).

Many producers will see payments in early June, depending on the coverage they elect.
The program protects dairy producers by paying them based on the difference between the national all milk price and the national average feed cost. The 2018 Bipartisan Budget Act made several changes to the safety net program to provide better protections for dairy producers from shifting milk and feed prices.

“MPP-Dairy is an important, improved safety net tool for the dairy industry,” said Bill Northey, Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation. “We encourage all dairy producers to carefully weigh their options and make their way to one of our 2,100 FSA county offices nationwide to discuss signing up for the program before the June 1 deadline.”

Updates include: Continue reading

05-30-18 Montrose, CO host of Stockmanship & Stewardship Conference September 21-22…

Montrose, CO host of Stockmanship & Stewardship Conference September 21-22

Registration Opens June 1st!

Join us on Colorado’s Western Slope for a one-of-a-kind “High Country” Stockmanship and Stewardship educational opportunity.

Spend a day and a half at the newly constructed, state of the art Montrose County Event Center in Montrose, Colorado to hear from some of the beef industry’s top-most experts, like Dr. Temple Grandin, on how implementing sound Stockmanship and Stewardship practices on your operation will add value to your bottom line. Continue reading

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

DOJ Approves Bayer Purchase of Monsanto

The U.S. Department of Justice Tuesday approved Bayer Ag’s acquisition of Monsanto, with conditions. The Justice Department says Bayer must sell approximately $9 billion in businesses and assets to BASF. The Department says the proposed divestiture to BASF, which it calls an experienced chemical company with a substantial crop protection business, will fully resolve all horizontal and vertical competition concerns. As a result, the Department says “American farmers and consumers will continue to benefit from competition in this industry.” The Antitrust Division Tuesday filed a civil antitrust lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia to block the proposed transaction, while simultaneously filing a proposed settlement that, if approved by the court, would resolve the department’s competitive concerns. Under the terms of the proposed settlement, Bayer must divest businesses that compete with Monsanto. Those include Bayer’s cotton, canola, soybean and vegetable seed businesses, as well as Bayer’s Liberty herbicide business, a key competitor of Monsanto’s well-known Roundup herbicide.

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NAFTA Talks Continue, Time Running Short

Negotiations of the North American Free Trade Agreement continue this week in Washington, as all sides are trying to wrap up the talks quickly. Canada’s foreign minister Chrystia Freeland is in Washington this week, meeting with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer and others, according to Bloomberg News. However, absent from the table is Mexico’s Economy Minister, who is attending other meetings in Paris. Time is running out for Mexico and Canada to continue to be exempt from U.S . steel and aluminum tariffs, which the “final exemption” according to the White House is set to expire this Friday. Also, Mexico’s election is set for July first, a hurdle in the talks negotiators have been trying to avoid. Mexico’s Economy Minister last week predicted there was a 40 percent chance all sides could reach an agreement before the election. The talks remain focused on the automotive sector, though other barriers remain for all sides to reach an agreement.

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U.S. to Continue With Trade Action Against China

Despite a potential agreement on trade issues between the U.S. and China, the Trump administration will continue to pursue action against China. By mid-June, The U.S. is expected to release a list of $50 billion worth of Chinese goods that will be subject to a new 25 percent tariff, according to Reuters. The United States will also continue to pursue litigation against China at the World Trade Organization. China earlier this month agreed to purchase more U.S. agricultural products, and the U.S. said the two had reached a deal for mobile phone manufacturer ZTE to remain in business. However, with nothing finalized, it appears the U.S. will push forward with what it calls “enhanced export controls” related to technology. The previous announcements eased the scare of a trade war, but President Trump last week said any agreement between the two would need “a different structure,” prompting more trade uncertainty.

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Beef Supply Facing Mounting Market Pressures

A recent report from Rabobank shows dryness in the south is pointing towards tightening of beef supplies. The Rabobank Beef Quarterly report shows beef cow slaughter numbers are up ten percent through mid-April from a year ago, driven by ongoing dry pasture conditions, and the likelihood of forced herd liquidation during the coming grazing season, as reported by meat industry publication Meatingplace. Beef production and consumption are both increasing, adding some building pressure on the world’s major beef markets, along with the potential of a drought year in the United States. The limited grazing opportunities in the U.S. forced cattle into feedyards quicker, driving up the number of cattle on feed between September and February. Western Oklahoma remains in an extreme drought, according to the latest U.S. Drought Monitor, along with much of Western Texas classified in a severe drought.

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USDA Will Not Recognize Third-Party Inspections Regarding Animal Welfare

The Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service, or APHIS, will not establish new criteria for recognizing third-party inspection and certification programs when determining the Agency’s own inspection frequency under the Animal Welfare Act. In December of last year, APHIS announced a series of public listening sessions as for leadership to gather information about the concept of third-party inspections from stakeholders, state partners and the public. However, APHIS says it found the vast majority of the comments were not in favor of establishing new criteria for recognizing third-party inspection and certification programs. USDA says stakeholders on all sides of the issue expressed concern about APHIS’ ability to maintain responsibility for inspections and Animal Welfare Act compliance should third-party inspections be taken into account when determining APHIS inspection frequencies.

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Reminder: MPP Enrollment Deadline Looming

Dairy farmers have until Friday to enroll in the retooled dairy Margin Protection Program. The Department of Agriculture set a June first deadline for enrollment in the program that was revised by Congress earlier this year. USDA says many producers will see payments in early June, depending on the coverage they elect. The program protects dairy producers by paying them based on the difference between the national all-milk price and the national average feed cost. The 2018 Bipartisan Budget Act made several changes to the safety net program to provide better protections for dairy producers from shifting milk and feed prices. Producers already enrolled in the program must still enroll in the new program, if they have yet to do so already. The new program is retroactive for all of 2018. For more information and enrollment, farmers are encouraged to contact their local Farm Service Agency office.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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05-29-18 USDA Providing $8.89 Million for Risk Management Education

USDA Providing $8.89 Million for Risk Management Education

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Risk Management Agency (RMA) today announced the availability of $8.89 million for risk management education and training programs. The funding will allow organizations such as universities, county cooperative extension offices, and nonprofit organizations to develop training and educational tools to help farmers and ranchers learn how to effectively manage long-term risks and challenges. Continue reading

05-29-18 Weld County Extension Offers Cheese Making Workshop on June 16th in Greeley, CO

Weld County Extension Offers Cheese Making Workshop on June 16th in Greeley, CO

Greeley, Colorado – May 29, 2018 – Colorado State University Extension, Weld County, will offer a workshop on cheese making on Saturday, June 16, at the Exhibition Building at Island Grove Park, 525 N 15th Avenue, Greeley. The workshop is intended for those interested in learning the basics of cheese making.

Cheese maker, Ripley Casdorph, and CSU Grad Student and cheese specialist, Caitlin Clark, will present on topics including: History of Cheese Making; Cheese Making Basics; Food Safety; and Types of Cheeses. Interspersed with these presentations will be a hands-on cheese-making experience for participants.

Registration is $20/person and limited to 20 participants. To register, contact Keith Maxey at Weld County Extension, 970-400-2075, or at kmaxey@weldgov.com. Continue reading

05-29-18 CAWA: Sterling Ag Water Tour on July 12th

CAWA: Sterling Ag Water Tour on July 12th

The Colorado Ag Water Alliance

The Colorado Ag Water Alliance (CAWA) is comprised of agricultural leaders from across Colorado representing major facets of production agriculture. CAWA’s goals is to empower Colorado agricultural producers to make the most informed and viable decisions regarding Colorado water.

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