09-03-20 NRCS-CO: USDA to Invest up to $360 Million in Partner-Driven Conservation

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NRCS-CO: USDA to Invest up to $360 Million in Partner-Driven Conservation

Application period has opened for the Regional Conservation Partnership Program

Proposals are due by 11:59 p.m. Eastern Time on November 4, 2020

COLORADO, September 3, 2020 – USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) recently invited potential conservation partners to submit project applications for federal funding through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). NRCS will award up to $360 million dollars to locally driven, public-private partnerships that improve the nation’s water quality, combat drought, enhance soil health, support wildlife habitat and protect agricultural viability.

“RCPP brings an expanded approach to investing in natural resource conservation that empowers local communities to work with multiple partners and agricultural producers to design solutions that work best for them,” said NRCS Chief Matthew Lohr.

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09-03-20 NRCS-CO: USDA Updates Conservation Provisions for Highly Erodible Land and Wetlands

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NRCS-CO: USDA Updates Conservation Provisions for Highly Erodible Land and Wetlands

USDA Now Accepting Proposals for Regional Conservation Partnership Program

COLORADO, September 3, 2020 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) published its final rule on determining whether land is considered highly erodible or a wetland, integrating input from the public and making updates in accordance with the 2018 Farm Bill. This final rule follows a focused effort by USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to improve consistency and use of science in making determinations. This follows an interim final rule published Dec. 7, 2018.

“Feedback is a very important resource, and we appreciate all of those who help us improve how determinations are made,” said Eugene Backhaus, Acting State Conservationist in Colorado. “Highly erodible land and wetland determinations are the gateway to USDA programs, and we strive to provide the highest quality technical assistance to inform decision-making by farmers and ranchers.”

To be eligible for most USDA programs, producers must be conservation compliant with the highly erodible land and wetland provisions. These provisions aim to reduce soil loss on erosion-prone lands and to protect wetlands for the multiple benefits they provide.

This final rule confirms most of the changes made by the December 2018 interim final rule and makes these additional updates: Continue reading

09-03-20 An Open Letter to the American Lamb Industry From ALB Chair Gwen Kitzan

An Open Letter to the American Lamb Industry From ALB Chair Gwen Kitzan

If it seems that the number and frequency of American Lamb Board (ALB) promotions and education to consumers has intensified since March, you are right.

But, things have changed. The trials created by COVID-19 and the upheaval in 2020 lamb packing and marketing options is on everyone’s mind almost constantly – and that includes the ALB directors. Some projections indicate that consumer demand for American lamb could be down 25% in 2020 and it is unknown to what degree, the foodservice market that once accounted for 40-50% of American lamb consumption will return.

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09-03-20 For the 1st Time Ever…The 2020 Colorado State Fair Horse Shows to be Live-Streamed

2020 Colorado State Fair Horse Shows to be Live-Streamed for the First Time

PUEBLO, Colo. – The Colorado State Fair is proud to host the 4-H State Championship Youth Horse Show and to provide live-streaming of this year’s events taking place over four days. Young riders ages 8-18  will compete in four distinct disciplines for premium money, class awards, and High Point Awards.

Additionally, riders will participate in a Parade of Colorado Counties and High School Senior Recognitions to close the 2020 horse show events.

The following events will be streamed live on the Colorado State Fair website:

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09-03-20 Inside the BARN with CO Ag Commissioner Kate Greenberg…

Inside the BARN with CO Ag Commissioner Kate Greenberg…

BRIGGSDALE, CO – September 3, 2020 – Joining the Colorado Ag News Network and FarmCast Radio at this time is Colorado Agriculture Commissioner Kate Greenberg, and will be discussing several topics impacting agriculture in the state…

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For more information  visit the CDA’s social media sites at:

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USDA – FAS Weekly Export Sales Report for September 3rd

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Weekly Export Sales for September 3rd

09-03-20 U.S. Senators Gardner, Bennet, Tipton Urge Federal Government to Assist Glenwood Springs with Wildfire Recovery

U.S. Senators Gardner, Bennet, Tipton Urge Federal Government to Assist Glenwood Springs with Wildfire Recovery

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senators Cory Gardner (R-CO) and Michael Bennet (D-CO) and U.S. Representative Scott Tipton (R-CO) are urging the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) to approve the City of Glenwood Springs’ request for greater financial assistance with the recovery from the Grizzly Creek Fire under the Emergency Watershed Protection (EWP) program.

“The Grizzly Creek Fire has created a number of hazards to the City of Glenwood Springs and the surrounding area, including community evacuations, shutting down major transportation corridors, and will negatively affect vegetation, the watershed, and the drinking water supply for years to come,” wrote Gardner and his colleagues. “The pandemic continues to stress the budgets of state and local governments, forcing many to consider spending cuts simply to ensure they can continue to facilitate basic government services. The Grizzly Creek Fire is expected to further exacerbate local budgets creating uncertainty over funding for future critical projects, such as restoration and infrastructure repair, which will be necessary to maintain a clean drinking water supply. For these reasons, and many more, we support the City’s request that the cost share requirement for emergency mitigation projects be 90 percent for NRCS and 10 percent for the sponsor.”

The full text of the letter is available here and below: Continue reading

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thursday, September 3rd

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thursday, September 3rd

Sponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

Aid Increases 2020 Farm Income Projections

The Department of Agriculture says farmers will earn more net farm income in 2020 due to federal relief programs. Net cash farm income is forecast to increase $4.9 billion to $115.2 billion. In inflation-adjusted 2020 dollars, net farm income is forecast to increase $18.3 billion, and net cash farm income is forecast to increase $4 billion. If realized, both income measures would be above their historical average across 2000-2019 when adjusted for inflation. However, the increase is not because of better prices or markets. USDA says overall, farm cash receipts are forecast to decrease $12.3 billion to $358.3 billion in 2020. Total animal receipts are expected to decline $14.3 billion, and total crop receipts are forecast to increase $2.0 billion from 2019 levels. USDA says direct government farm payments, including federal aid but not loans and insurance, are forecast at $37.2 billion, a $14.7 billion, or 65.7 percent increase. USDA says the expected increase is due to supplemental and ad hoc disaster assistance for COVID-19 relief.

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Barchart Releases September Yield Forecast

Barchart Tuesday released its September 2020 yield forecast. The September cmdty (commodity) Yield Forecast for end of season yield is forecast at 178.4 bushels per acre for corn and 50.5 for soybeans in the United States. The forecast represents an increase in yield compared to the August report, which forecasted end of season yield for corn 174.8 bushels per acre and end of season yield for soybeans 49.2. The corn estimate comes in above the Pro Farmer Crop Tour estimate last month of 177.5 bushels per acre, and below the Pro Farmer soybean estimate of 52.5. Released on the first Tuesday of each month during the growing season, the Barchart forecast allows users to get insights to guide their business decisions ahead of USDA’s World Agriculture Supply and Demand report. USDA will release the September WASDE next Friday, September 11. Barchart is a provider of market data and services to the global financial, media, and commodity industries.

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AFBF Market Intel: Cash Rents Stable in 2020

Farmland cash rent rates remain stable in 2020, according to a Market Intel analysis by the American Farm Bureau Federation. The analysis found that during 2020, the average cash rental rates for cropland, irrigated cropland and pastureland were $139 per acre, $216 per acre and $13 per acre, respectively. These rates were mostly in line with prior-year levels. AFBF Chief Economist John Newton says the stability in cash rental rates is likely due to various factors, including Market Facilitation Program payments, ad hoc disaster aid, and increased off-farm income. All of these factors allow farmers to remain competitive when bidding for cash lease agreements. However, Newton writes, “Moving into 2021, the farm economic outlook is uncertain.” Off-farm income is certain to be lower given the high levels of unemployment following COVID-19. However, support through the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program could help farmers remain competitive when bidding for cash rental agreements this fall and into the spring.

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USTR Announces Plan to Help Produce Farmers

The Trump administration this week released a report outlining its plan to address the threat posed by increased foreign imports to American producers of seasonal and perishable fruits and vegetables. The plan follows public hearings held in August, where more than 60 witnesses testified, in addition to over 300 written submissions. USTR will request the International Trade Commission to initiate a safeguard investigation into the extent to which increased imports of blueberries have caused serious injury to domestic blueberry growers. USTR will also pursue senior-level government-to-government discussions with Mexico over the next 90 days to address U.S. industry concerns regarding U.S. imports of Mexican strawberries, bell peppers, and other seasonal and perishable products. Meanwhile, the Department of Agriculture will conduct targeted outreach to producers of seasonal and perishable fruits and vegetables to maximize the use of existing USDA programs. USDA says it will also develop a market promotion strategy for domestically produced produce.

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Cooler Weather and Freeze Risk Ahead

The U.S. weather forecast calls for cooler temperatures next week, and agriculture commodity trade experts say the chance of frost and freeze cannot be ruled out. Jim Bower of Bower Trading in his daily newsletter Wednesday wrote, “Wednesday of next week will bring some frost potential to western Nebraska and immediate neighboring areas as well as a few areas in the eastern Dakotas into Minnesota.” The forecast suggests that Tuesday will bring frost and freezes to the eastern Canada Prairies, possibly ending the growing season for some areas and possibly pushing some feeze conditions into the northwestern Plains. For Wednesday, Bower says a few freezes cannot be ruled out for the eastern Dakotas, the northwest half of Minnesota and possibly in a couple of western Nebraska locations, but most other temperatures will be above the damage threshold. However, Bower says, the forecast suggests temperatures will not be cold enough to seriously threaten crops as most crop should be mature enough and not be a major factor.

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Farm Aid Hosting Virtual Festival September 26

Farm Aid will mark its 35th anniversary with a virtual at-home festival experience. Farm Aid 2020 On the Road, scheduled for Saturday, September 26, will include performances from more than 20 artists. The three-hour event will be streamed at FarmAid.org, on Farm Aid’s YouTube channel, AXS TV and Fans.com. Farm Aid’s 35th anniversary comes at a time of unprecedented uncertainty. Organizers say, “The impacts of COVID-19 have revealed the fragility and injustice in our food system,” adding that for farmers, “thousands are at risk of going under.” The virtual festival will showcase stories from farmers from across the country who were invited to share why they farm, how they manage to stay resilient, and their vision of the future of agriculture. The goal of the virtual festival is to raise funds for and awareness of the organization and its mission, which it typically does through ticket sales to the annual in-person music and food festival. Farm Aid accepts donations year-round at www.farmaid.org/donate.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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