05-17-19 USDA Secretary Perdue Statement on the Removal of Section 232 Tariffs

USDA Secretary Perdue Statement on the Removal of Section 232 Tariffs

May 17, 2019, Washington D.C. – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue released the following statement after the Section 232 Tariffs were removed from Canada and Mexico.

“Today’s announcement is a big win for American agriculture and the economy as a whole. I thank President Trump for negotiating a great deal and for negotiating the removal of these tariffs. Canada and Mexico are two of our top three trading partners, and it is my expectation that they will immediately pull back their retaliatory tariffs against our agricultural products. Congress should move swiftly to ratify the USMCA so American farmers can begin to benefit from the agreement.”


05-17-19 Joint Statement – Wheat Leaders Glad to See Sec. 232 Tariffs Removed, Call on Congress to Approve USMCA

Joint Statement – Wheat Leaders Glad to See Sec. 232 Tariffs Removed, Call on Congress to Approve USMCA

ARLINGTON, Virginia —The announcement today that Section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from Mexico and Canada will be removed is an important step toward approval of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement on Trade (USMCA), say farmer leaders of U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) and the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG).

“We thank the Administration for recognizing that these tariffs are hindering trade agendas that open overseas markets,” said USW Chairman Chris Kolstad, a wheat farmer from Ledger, Mont. “We also encourage repealing all the remaining steel and aluminum tariffs and oppose new tariffs on autos under Section 232. New tariffs would encourage our trading partners to retaliate against U.S. farmers and agricultural exports and further weaken international trade rules.” Continue reading

05-17-19 CSU Ext: 2019 Grasshopper populations and risk of infestation and damage in Colorado

2019 Grasshopper populations and risk of infestation and damage in Colorado

Assefa Gebre-Amlak and Frank Peairs, Colorado State University Extension

According to the 2018 USDA APHIS adult grasshopper counts,  (https://www.aphis.usda.gov/plant_health/plant_pest_info/grasshopper/…/hazard.pdf) there were low populations of grasshoppers in Colorado last year with the exception of some areas of a low to moderate risk of rangeland infestations in south eastern counties this year. The rest of Colorado had much lower counts of the insect and no risk of grasshopper infestations and damage expected in 2019.

We encourage ranchers and producers to monitor grasshopper situations in your area in those counties with moderate risk of the hazard. Generally, grasshoppers have one generation per year. Eggs are deposited in the ground in the fall. The eggs hatch in the spring and summer (late May through early June) and hatch is dependent on soil temperature, which differs for different species. Continue reading

05-17-19 CSU Ext: Are you scouting for alfalfa weevil in your fields?

CSU Ext: Are you scouting for alfalfa weevil in your fields?

CSU Extension LogoAssefa Gebre-Amlak, Extension Specialist, Colorado State University Extension

It is time to scout alfalfa fields for alfalfa weevil infestations in Colorado. Weevil larvae are currently seen in most fields. These insect larvae are about 1¦20 inch long when they first hatch. They range in color from cream, to pale green, and are curved with shiny black heads. A white stripe running down the middle of the back may be visible and becomes more distinctive as the larva matures. At this stage a 10X hand lens is necessary to identify the weevil larvae. The coloration and shape is characteristic throughout the four larval stages, referred to as “instars.” Fully-grown larvae are up to 3¦8 inch long and are wider in the midsection than at either end of the body.

Alfalfa weevil larvae feeding in the folded leaves can heavily damage stem terminals, but initial damage is not always clearly visible. The closed, overlapping foliage of the stem terminals should be unfolded to detect feeding damage. Third and fourth larval instars cause most of the economic damage, so initiating sampling at the peak occurrence of second instars should provide adequate sampling prior to economic weevil populations. Continue reading

WGCD’s Third Annual FREE BBQ is August 9th in Greeley – RSVP TODAY!


WGCD’s Third Annual FREE BBQ is August 9th in Greeley – RSVP TODAY!

RSVP by Noon Monday, Aug. 2nd simply call 970-356-8097 ext 3 or email: info@wgcd.org with the total number of attendees

It’s time for the 3rd Annual West Greeley Conservation District’s FREE BBQ!  We invite you, your family, friends, co-workers, and employees to join us from 4 to 8 p.m. on Friday, August 9th (see attached). PLEASE help spread the word. We will begin serving supper at 5 p.m. Continue reading

05-17-19 Dairy Industry Cheers Rollback of Tariffs That Bolsters USMCA Chances

NMPF - US Dairy Export Council joint logo

Dairy Industry Cheers Rollback of Tariffs That Bolsters USMCA Chances 

ARLINGTON, VA – U.S. dairy officials today congratulated the governments of the United States, Mexico and Canada for reaching an agreement to roll back metal tariffs that have soured U.S.-Mexico cheese trade and slowed passage of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA).

The United States agreed to end Section 232 tariffs on steel and aluminum imports from its North American neighbors. In return, U.S. dairy officials expect that Mexico will drop their retaliatory tariffs against U.S. dairy products – including duties as high as 25 percent on U.S. cheese exports to Mexico. Continue reading

05-17-19 NPPC Statement on U.S. Lifting North American Metal Tariffs

NPPC Statement on U.S. Lifting North American Metal Tariffs

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 17, 2019 – The Trump administration today announced plans to lift the 25% tariff on steel and the 10% duty on aluminum imports imposed last year on Canada and Mexico. Both countries subsequently retaliated against a host of U.S. products.

“We thank the administration for ending a trade dispute that has placed enormous financial strain on American pork producers,” said David Herring, a pork producer from Lillington, N.C., and president of the National Pork Producers Council. “Mexico’s 20% retaliatory tariff on U.S. pork has cost our producers $12 per animal, or $1.5 billion on an annualized, industry-wide basis. Removing the metal tariffs restores zero-tariff trade to U.S. pork’s largest export market and allows NPPC to focus more resources on working toward ratification of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), which preserves zero-tariff trade for U.S. pork in North America.” Continue reading

05-17-19 NCGA Action Alert: Another Penny for Corn Farmers Won’t Cut It

CLICK HERE to Take Action now!

NCGA Action Alert: Another Penny for Corn Farmers Won’t Cut It

Rumor has it that the White House could make their trade announcement today.  Please take action now to make your voice heard!

Last Friday’s announcement that the Trump Administration is increasing the tariffs on $200 billion worth of Chinese goods, and China’s retaliatory tariffs, could not have come at a worse time for corn farmers, bringing more uncertainty to markets and impacting commodity prices. Continue reading

05-17-19 AFBF: Fish and Wildlife Extends Comment Period for Gray Wolf De-listing to July 15th

AFBF: Fish and Wildlife Extends Comment Period for Gray Wolf De-listing to July 15th

Farmers and ranchers now have more time to comment on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service’s proposal to take the gray wolf off the endangered species list, a move American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall called “a triumph of common sense we all should herald as a conservation success story.” The comment period has been extended by 60 days to July 15. Continue reading

05-17-19 USDA: U.S. Beef Gains Full Access to Japan

USDA: U.S. Beef Gains Full Access to Japan

WASHINGTON, D.C., May 17, 2019 – U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced that the United States and Japan have agreed on new terms and conditions that eliminate Japan’s longstanding restrictions on U.S. beef exports, paving the way for expanded sales to the United States’ top global beef market. Last week, on the margins of the G-20 Agriculture Ministerial Meeting in Niigata, Japan, Secretary Perdue met with Japanese government officials and affirmed the importance of science-based trade rules. The new terms, which take effect immediately, allow U.S. products from all cattle, regardless of age, to enter Japan for the first time since 2003.

“This is great news for American ranchers and exporters who now have full access to the Japanese market for their high-quality, safe, wholesome, and delicious U.S. beef,” Secretary Perdue said. “We are hopeful that Japan’s decision will help lead other markets around the world toward science-based policies.”

Continue reading

05-17-19 Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District: Farms get boost in water from Fry-Ark Project

CLICK HERE to view the full report

Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District: Farms get boost in water from Fry-Ark Project

Agriculture received the lion’s share of water from the Fryingpan-Arkansas Project this year, when an abundant water supply is expected to boost Arkansas River flows as well as imported water.

Allocations totaling 63,000 acre-feet were made by the Southeastern Colorado Water Conservancy District board on Thursday (May 16), with 48,668 acre-feet going to agriculture, and 14,332 going to cities. The district is the agency responsible for management of the Fry-Ark Project, which is operated by the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation.

“This is a remarkable outcome for the Arkansas River basin, given the dry conditions we faced last year,” said Garrett Markus, water resources engineer for the district. “The conditions look favorable during the next three months, when rainfall should add to the abundant snowpack already in the mountains.”

Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Friday, May 17th

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READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Friday, May 17th

EPA Lied About Justifying RFS Waivers

A Reuters report says the Trump Administration made it easier for oil refiners to get waivers from the Renewable Fuels Standard. They did so at least four months before the 2017 court decision the administration uses to justify the move to the corn lobby. The Reuters report says the move was motivated by a desire to save the oil industry a lot of money. The timing and motivation for the Environmental Protection Agency’s policy change were revealed through court documents and an interview with a former top agency official. It hadn’t been previously reported and reinforces corn industry concerns that the decision to expand the waiver program was made by the EPA. Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa says, “EPA repeatedly told Congress its hands were tied and blamed the courts. That appears to have been a lie. EPA also said it was following the Department of Energy’s recommendations. We know that’s bunk.” Grassley issued a statement saying he was going to “get to the bottom of this.” The waivers saved the oil industry hundreds of millions of dollars.


Tariffs on Mexico, Canada, May Be Lifted Soon

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin (Muh-NOO-chin) says the administration is close to “an understanding with Mexico and Canada” to remove tariffs that have been in place for almost a year and have heavily impacted U.S. agriculture. Politico says it’s not clear yet what the potential agreement between the three countries might include. However, any tariff resolution would go a long way toward clearing a path to Congressional approval of the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Trade Agreement. That agreement is President Trump’s top trade achievement and his primary legislative priority this year. Democrats are already more optimistic about eventually passing the agreement following a meeting with U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer. Many lawmakers and Ag groups consider removing the tariffs even more important than the actual trade agreement. Trump’s tariffs caused Canada and Mexico to retaliate with duties on $17 billion in U.S. exports, including a lot of foods and farm goods. Mexico’s Under Secretary for North America says instead of a quota system sought by the administration, one proposal would involve a tracking system designed to prevent other countries from bypassing tariffs by shipping steel and aluminum through Mexico.


USDA Enhancing Protection Efforts Against African Swine Fever

The U.S. Department of Agriculture is taking steps to further its protection efforts against African Swine Fever making its way into the U.S. The agency is implementing a new surveillance plan in which the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service will work directly with the swine industry, the states, and veterinary diagnostic laboratories to test for ASF. The disease has never been detected in the United States. As the hog industry knows too well, ASF is a contagious and deadly disease that affects both domestic and wild pigs. It doesn’t affect human health and can’t be transmitted from pigs to humans. In order to make the surveillance program as effective as possible, USDA says it will add ASF testing to their existing classical swine fever surveillance. USDA and its partner agencies expect to begin new ASF testing protocols within weeks. They will test samples from the same high-risk animals, using the same overall process, but test for both diseases instead of one. The surveillance effort will test samples from high-risk animals, including sick pig submissions to veterinary diagnostic laboratories; sick or dead pigs at slaughter; and pigs from herds that are at risk for the disease because of factors like exposure to feral swine or garbage feeding.


Peterson Vows to Block USDA’s CRP Signup

The Farm Service Agency says it will begin to accept Conservation Reserve Program applications starting on June 3 from farmers who engage in certain practices. The agency will also offer extensions for expiring CRP contracts. FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce also says the FSA will not hold a general CRP signup until December. A Grasslands CRP signup will still be held later this year. The Hagstrom Report says Fordyce announced the signups during a House Agriculture Conservation and Forestry Subcommittee hearing. However, not everyone was pleased. House Ag Committee Chair Collin Peterson was furious with the announcement. Peterson said during the hearing that he would block the signup programs, even if he has to file suit against the USDA. Peterson believes that the continuous CRP will take up acreage that will go into the general sign-up. Much of the land that goes into the continuous CRP, which emphasizes improvements in water quality, “does almost zero good for wildlife,” Peterson says. USDA is using rules under the 2014 Farm Bill for the continuous CRP signup but plans to engage in formal rulemaking for the general signup. Peterson doesn’t understand why USDA can hold one signup under the old rules and engage in rulemaking for the other.


President Unveiling New Immigration Proposal

President Trump is putting a spotlight back on one of his signature issues as the 2020 presidential campaign picks up steam. The Hill Dot Com says the new proposal was put together by Trump’s son-in-law and senior adviser Jared Kushner. It would create a merit-based system that gives preference to immigrants that have coveted job skills. The current system gives preference to relatives of other immigrants. The plan will also call for new infrastructure at ports of entry to speed up commerce while cracking down on drug and human smuggling. Officials say that legislative action on this or any other immigration plan may not happen for some time yet. One notable Republican told The Hill that the plan represents a “good-faith effort to start a discussion aimed at finding a resolution.” An adviser who spoke to The Hill anonymously says Trump would use the plan as a tool in the upcoming election if Democrats don’t engage with the administration. The timing of the release is only 18 months before the presidential election. It’s also less than six weeks before the first Democratic presidential debate, which suggests serious negotiations aren’t likely.


Pork Checkoff Studies How Dining has Changed in Recent Years

The National Pork Board released findings from its Comprehensive Insight to Action research. This time, the research looked at trends in consumer behavior that relate to dining out. The dining landscape has shifted in recent years and multicultural cuisine trends are on the rise in the U.S. The Pork Board set out to understand the needs, considerations, and motivations that impacted where diners go when they head out to eat. The report, called “All About Dining Out; What’s on Trend,” looks into reasons why consumers choose the proteins they eat. It also explores tactics to help food providers meet those needs. Some of the key consumer insights include the three primary drivers for consumer decisions on where to eat, which include taste, health, and convenience. Consumers also typically seek out new menu options. More than a quarter of consumers consistently look for something new to eat and they see dining out as a good way to do that. The study also finds that healthy options are still very important. The Pork Board says restaurants can expand their menus to include more healthy pork choices like a pork tenderloin or pork sirloin chop. Those choices fit right beside other healthy proteins like chicken and seafood.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service