05-09-18 NAFB: March Red Meat Export Numbers Solid, Future More Uncertain, according to USMEF

NAFB: March Red Meat Export Numbers Solid, Future More Uncertain

(NAFB NEWS SERVICE via The BARN) MAY 9, 2018 – The March red meat export numbers are in and they were very good. Joe Schuele (SHE-lee) of the U.S. Meat Export Federation says March was the best month ever for combined red meat export value in terms of beef, pork, and lamb…

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Audio provided by NAFB News Service

05-09-18 NAFB: Oklahoma Wildfire Damage Numbers Still Climbing…

NAFB: Oklahoma Wildfire Damage Numbers Still Climbing

(NAFB NEWS SERVICE via The BARN) MAY 9, 2018 – The good news is that the wildfires that have hit northwest Oklahoma hard are officially out. If the weather cooperates, they should stay that way. Woodward County was one of the areas hit hardest by the wildfires. Woodward County Extension Educator Dana Bay says the damage was extensive…

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Audio provided by NAFB News Service

05-09-18 NO FARMS, NO FOOD, NO FUTURE: AMERICAN FARMLAND TRUST RELEASES NEW REPORT ON THE LOSS OF FARMLAND

The extent and distribution of agricultural land in 2012

NO FARMS, NO FOOD, NO FUTURE: AMERICAN FARMLAND TRUST RELEASES NEW REPORT ON THE LOSS OF FARMLAND

Washington, DC – Today, American Farmland Trust releases the most comprehensive assessment ever undertaken of the loss of U.S. farmland and ranchland. “Farms Under Threat: The State of America’s Farmland” sounds a stark warning: The loss of farmland is serious and will accelerate unless we take action. Among the report’s key findings:

  • Between 1992 and 2012, almost 31 million acres of farmland were lost, equal to all the farmland in Iowa,
  • Nearly twice the area of farmland was lost than was previously shown,
  • 11 million of those acres were among the best farmland in the nation,
    Development disproportionately occurred on agricultural lands, with 62 percent of all development occurring on farmland, and
  • Expanding urban areas accounted for 59 percent of the loss. Low-density residential development, or the building of houses on 1-to-20-acre parcels, accounted for 41 percent.

“Farms Under Threat: The State of America’s Farmland” is the first step in a multifaceted initiative. This national report will be followed by a separate report later this year that analyzes past farmland loss state by state and looks at the effectiveness of state farmland protection policies. Then AFT will assess a range of future threats, forecast potential impacts to 2040 at a county level and recommend effective policies at all levels that help conserve agricultural land.

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READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Wednesday, May 9th

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 9th

China Trade Discussion Continues Next Week

Trade talks with China will continue next week, according to President Donald Trump. President Trump says he and China’s President Xi Jinping (she-gin-ping) will talk over the phone next week as both sides are willing to work towards a consensus, according to Reuters. A U.S. delegation traveled to China last week with no agreement on a long list of demands. Meanwhile, China’s top economic official is expected to visit Washington, D.C. next week to resume the negotiations sparked by U.S. tariffs. China is imposing and threatening tariffs of U.S. agricultural products, including a 25 percent soybean tariff. Meanwhile, the Trump trade team is currently working on the North American Free Trade Agreement with counterparts from Canada and Mexico, hoping to reach an agreement within the next few weeks.

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Smithfield Verdict Slashed by Federal Judge

A federal judge has slashed the damages awarded to neighbors of a North Carolina hog farm. Politico reports that a federal judge has lowered the award to $2.5 million from $50 million. The judge reduced the award because of a cap on damages set by state law. Last month, a North Carolina jury ruled that Murphy Brown LLC, a subsidiary of Smithfield Foods, must pay its neighbors $50 million in damages as the result of a nuisance lawsuit. The plaintiffs complained that waste from the farm smelled so bad that it limited their access to the outdoors, and that the farm’s open waste lagoons attracted buzzards and flies. The jury in the case took less than 24 hours to reach a verdict. The trial involved ten plaintiffs who live near a farm that contracts with Smithfield to raise 15,000 hogs.

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Co-ops Support California Federal Milk Marketing Order

The three largest milk marketing cooperatives in California have voted in support of the California Federal Milk Marketing Order as proposed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. California Dairies, Inc., Dairy Farmers of America and Land O’Lakes, Inc., announced their shared support of the proposal this week. In a joint statement, the three cooperatives said they “believe the proposal will better address disparities between farm gate prices in California and the rest of the nation.” After USDA’s release of the final decision on March 30th, the three cooperatives held educational sessions for their member-owners to provide an overview of the final decision and discuss their voting preferences. Each of the cooperatives then participated in bloc voting, meaning a single affirmative vote from each cooperative represents the voting cooperative’s total membership in the state. USDA will officially announce the results of the referendum in the coming weeks. If the results support approval of the proposal, the new system is expected to be in place by November 1, 2018.

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Report Shows Improvements in Animal Welfare, Quality and Sustainability

A new report released this week highlights producers’ commitment to animal welfare, beef quality, sustainability and community involvement by America’s cattlemen and women resulting in responsibly raised beef. The Cattlemen’s Stewardship Review, funded by the Beef Checkoff and completed in late 2017, compiles data collected from cattlemen and women across the country. The first survey. Completed in 2010, the first survey set a benchmark for the cattle industry. The new report shows that in the years since improvements have been made in all four areas of the cattle industry. In addition, the report includes a comprehensive profile of the beef community today, the impact of beef production to the U.S. economy and the research-based tools and resources used to raise beef. National Cattlemen’s Beef Association CEO Kendal Frazier says the survey shows “an overview of producer commitment and progress across the cattle industry.”

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Perdue Hosts Food Waste Roundtable

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue hosted a food waste roundtable Tuesday which is expected to be the first of many events regarding food waste. The roundtable at the Department of Agriculture included Representatives Chellie Pingree of Maine and David Young of Iowa, along with food industry leaders and others. Secretary Perdue says the nation’s “agricultural abundance should be used to nourish those in need, not fill the trash.” While food loss and waste eats up nearly 40 percent of the food supply in the U.S., millions of Americans need access to affordable food, according to USDA. The federal agency says consumers are responsible for most food loss and waste in the U.S., racking up almost 90 billion pounds annually, or 20 percent of the U.S. food supply. The retail sector is responsible for about ten percent, totaling 43 billion pounds.

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Assistant to the Secretary Anne Hazlett Applauds FLOTUS Be Best Initiative

The First Lady’s policy initiative will help rural America, according to a Department of Agriculture official. Melania Trump’s campaign, Be Best, is a program that USDA says will be an important voice for the next generation of rural leaders. Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett says the campaign, which comes as the opioid epidemic is having a devastating impact on rural areas, will “build a strong foundation that supports families and children affected by the crisis.” The campaign will focus on the holistic wellness of American children, with three main pillars: well-being, social media use, and opioid abuse. President Donald Trump has previously directed USDA to focus on addressing the opioid crisis in rural communities. USDA has also partnered with the National Farmers Union and American Farm Bureau Federation to create FarmTownStrong, an initiative to address and overcome the epidemic.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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