03-23-17 Haxtun Community Fire Relief Information and How YOU can Help…

Written by: From Candie Salyards After Incident – Incident Command PIO

The Logan/Phillips County Fire started on Monday, March 6 around 11:30 a.m. on private property near the South Plate River. Winds at speeds between 40-60 miles per hour carried the fire over Interstate 76, across the plains of Northeastern Colorado to north of Haxtun where total containment came two days later on the evening of March 8. Total, 32,564 acres burned, spanning nearly 26 miles. Continue reading

03-23-17 USDA/NASS-CO: LIVESTOCK SLAUGHTER

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LIVESTOCK SLAUGHTER – FEBRUARY 2017

UNITED STATES HIGHLIGHTS

Commercial red meat production for the United States totaled 3.94 billion pounds in February, up 1 percent from the 3.90 billion pounds produced in February 2016.

Beef production, at 1.93 billion pounds, was 3 percent above the previous year. Cattle slaughter totaled 2.37 million head, up 3 percent from February 2016. The average live weight was down 12 pounds from the previous year, at 1,360 pounds

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03-23-17 NFU Public Comments Strongly Endorse Fair Practice Rules

NFU Public Comments Strongly Endorse Fair Practice Rules

WASHINGTON On behalf of nearly 200,000 family farm and ranch members, National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson submitted public comments to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) yesterday, advocating for the agency to finalize the Farmer Fair Practices Rules. The rules would provide family farmers and ranchers with protections against anti-competitive and abusive practices.

“Family farmers and ranchers are operating in an extremely consolidated agricultural marketplace, where lack of competition provides the major meat companies with tremendous power,” said Johnson. “Farmer Fair Practices Rules provide family farmers and ranchers with the most basic of protections against egregious and anti-competitive practices. They are long overdue and we urge the USDA to finalize them as soon as possible.” Continue reading

03-23-17 Beef Checkoff News: Masters of Beef Advocacy Program Reaches 10,000 Grads!

MBA Program Reaches 10,000 Grads!

This month, the beef checkoff’s Masters of Beef Advocacy (MBA) program, reached 10,000 graduates! This group of beef and dairy producers – along with chefs, teachers, doctors, dietitians and others in the beef community – has stepped up and are leading the way in advocating for the industry and all of agriculture. After completing the program, MBA grads are equipped to have engaging conversations with consumers, both online and in person, and are encouraged to participate in advocacy campaigns. The MBA program was started in March 2009. Continue reading

03-23-17 Colorado’s Cool Planet closes on nearly $20M to fund commercialization of engineered biocarbon products…

Cool Planet closes on nearly $20 million to fund commercialization of engineered biocarbon products

GREENWOOD VILLAGE, Colo. (March 23, 2017) — Agriculture technology company Cool Planet has closed on $19.3 million in Series A financing and note conversion to commercialize its Cool Terra and Cool Fauna engineered biocarbon products. Cool Planet is focused on developing products that are simultaneously profitable as well as sustainable and has raised nearly $30 million in the last 18 months. This latest round of funding was led by Agustín Coppel and North Bridge Venture Partners. Continue reading

03-23-17 CO-OEDIT: Deadline Approaching for Governor’s Award for Excellence in Exporting

Deadline Approaching for Governor’s Award for Excellence in Exporting
Colorado-based companies that have exported products or services for three years or more are eligible to apply for the 2017 Governor’s Award for Excellence in ExportingApplications are due on or before April 14, 2017. 
The Colorado Office of Economic Development and International Trade (OEDIT) and the World Trade Center Denver are now accepting applications for the 2017 Governor’s Award for Excellence in Exporting. This award has been given to Colorado exporters annually since 1970 and recognizes economic growth through international business.
Access the 2017 Governor’s Export Award application here.  More information about OEDIT’s export grant programs can be found here.
Winners will be formally recognized on May 16, 2017 at World Trade Day, the region’s premier international trade event. Awardees will receive two tickets to the 44th annual World Trade Day conference at the Colorado Convention Center. This year’s World Trade Day theme is Containers to the Cloud: Trade as Goods, Services & Knowledge.

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03-23-17 USDA – FAS Weekly Export Sales Report for March 23rd

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Weekly Export Sales

READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thursday, March 23rd…

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, March 23rd…

Trump Ag Assistant Lists Administration Priorities

North Carolina native Ray Starling is still new to his role as Special Assistant to the President for Agriculture, Agricultural Trade, and Food Assistance. Starling spoke to Penton Agriculture this week about some of the administration’s key priorities when it comes to agriculture. Some of the biggest priorities include promoting agricultural trade, giving farmers access to a stable workforce, regulation reform, and giving agriculture a seat at the table when new regulations are discussed. Starling says, “We are getting to a period of push comes to shove” on accessing a sufficient workforce for American agriculture. Just how this is going to be set up in future policy development remains to be seen, but he said this is a top-of-mind issue. “On the regulatory reform issue, we want to evaluate the current landscape and make it less onerous,” Starling says. “We want to lessen the cumulative impact of those regulations and provide you a stronger voice in the process to vet future regulations.”  He says a voice for agriculture should not only be in place at the U.S. Department of Agriculture, but at other agencies as well, including the Environmental Protection Agency, Department of the Interior, and the Department of Labor.

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3.3% Rise Seen in 2017 Soybean Acres

The U.S. Department of Agriculture will release its Prospective Plantings Report on March 31. In the days leading up to it, several organizations are making predictions as to what the report will show. An Ag Web Dot Com article says Met Life Agricultural Finance is the latest to do so. Met Life is predicting that farmers will increase their soybean acres 3.3 percent over last year. If that comes true, it would raise U.S. soybean acres to 87 million. That number is a bit lower than Allendale’s projection of 88.8 million acres and USDA’s Agricultural Outlook Forum prediction of 88 million acres. A Met Life report says, “Cyclically low agricultural commodity prices have led to declining financial conditions in the sector, and planting soybeans requires less working capital than corn and cotton.” As an example, the report cites 2015, when the average per-acre operating costs for soybeans was $171 per acre, compared to $334 for corn and $497 for cotton.  Other highlights from the Met Life report include an expectation that farmland values won’t start a recovery until 2019. The report also advises a cautious approach to 2017 because political uncertainty can cause market volatility.

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Brazil Meat Scandal an “Economic Embarrassment”

Brazil President Michel Temer (Mee’-shell Tuh-mehr’) called the recent scandal around Brazil’s sale of expired meats to other countries an “economic embarrassment” on Tuesday while more countries suspended meat imports from his nation. An Associated Press Report says five countries and the European Union have all halted at least some meat imports from Brazil, which will be a major blow to a struggling economy. Temer tried to downplay the scandal, calling it a “fuss.” He notes that only three of the more than 4,000 meatpacking plants across Brazil have been forced to close. Investigators are saying health inspectors were bribed to ignore the sale of expired meat products. Police also say the appearance and the smell of the rotten meat were covered up by chemicals, as well as water and flour. Trade Associations for beef, pork, and poultry producers in Brazil say this could have a major impact on employment across the country. It could put a major dent in the economy as meat exports comprise 15 percent of the country’s total amount of exports. So far, the Brazil government has banned meat exports from 21 plants under investigation.

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Consumer Groups Rally Against Rollbacks

A dozen consumer groups have banded together to work against legislation that would make it more difficult for the government to issue regulations. The groups have dubbed it the “filthy food act,” which they say will make it more difficult to keep the American food supply safe. Politico’s Morning Agriculture Report says the bill is formally known as the Regulatory Accountability Act, clearing the House in January, with the Senate looking at its own version of the legislation. Groups like the Environmental Working Group, the Consumers Union, and others, say they are working to “raise the alarm” across social media platforms this week. The groups sent a letter to Congressional leaders this week saying, “Food safety rules help to reduce the risks posed by pathogens and pesticides. But the ‘Filthy Food Act’ would create an unprecedented regulatory gauntlet through which no food safety rule or guidance could pass.” They also say the act would cut science out of the regulatory process, replacing public input and expert testimony with mountains of reviews and red tape. The groups also point out that the Food Safety and Modernization Act, passed in 2011 and strongly supported by consumer groups and the food industry, would have been much more difficult to push through if the Regulatory Accountability Act was in place.

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White House Recognizes National Ag Day Tuesday

President Donald Trump proclaimed Tuesday as National Ag Day in America, noting that “American farmers and ranchers help to feed the world.” The proclamation also says farmers help to fuel the nation’s economy and lead global markets in output and productivity. The Trump proclamation also calls agriculture endlessly innovative and the largest positive contributor to the nation’s trade balance. The proclamation was praised by virtually all sectors of agriculture. John Bode, President and CEO of the Corn Refiners Association, said the president recognizes that “improved trade balances and a successful agriculture sector are linked.” Bode says the industry’s exports not only deliver jobs at home, but they’re a fundamental strength abroad. “We are happy to know the White House agrees with this and will look to increase ag exports as they study existing and future trade agreements,” he added.  White House press secretary Sean Spicer mentioned National Ag Day during his daily briefing, saying American farmers are the most efficient in the world, in spite of tighter margins, increasing regulations, and declining exports due to unwise trade policies. Spicer adds, “The President has promised people in the ag industry and rural America that he will not allow this to continue.”

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Meat Groups Want Disease Protection in Farm Bill

Beef, turkey, sheep and pork industry representatives all testified in favor of a stronger program to protect animals from disease, especially foot-and-mouth disease. The Hagstrom Report says the groups gave testimony on Tuesday at a hearing before the House Agriculture Livestock and Foreign Agriculture Subcommittee. The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and the National Pork Producers Council both testified in favor of spending $150 million on an FMD vaccine bank. Current foot-and-mouth disease funding is at $1.9 million. National Turkey Federation President and Minnesota turkey farmer Carl Wittenburg said the proposal should build on the 2014 Farm Bill’s authorization of the National Animal Health Laboratory. The new proposal should establish the national FMD vaccine bank, help develop a block grant system that allows states and key groups to target areas of concern, and take full advantage of the science generated by the National Institute of Food and Agriculture program. All the groups giving testimony want the new program to be included in talks as Congress develops the 2018 Farm Bill.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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03-22-17 CSU Ext: Post-fire considerations on Eastern Colorado rangeland

Post-fire considerations on Eastern Colorado rangeland

While range fires can be chaotic and deadly, most of the impact comes after the flames and smoke have ended.  Replacing lost forage (as well as future grazing) will be a challenge.  But recently burned pastures will come back stronger if livestock are not re-stocked too early.  Post-fire, the period of recovery on rangelands is determined by moisture, past grazing management, recovery period, and severity of erosion post-fire.

Burned plants will need abundant moisture to recover.  Stocking rates will be still likely be depressed for the first few years following the rest period.  Below is a chart outlining possible years of post-fire rest for two common shortgrass soil types.  Each pasture is unique, and should be determined on a case-by-case basis.

With few exceptions, your range plants are still alive and will come back.  Think of your forage community as a boxer healing between fights.  Management objectives should focus on retaining and improving existing plants, restoring soil cover and water capture, and allowing for recovery of the forage community to support livestock production again.

1. Range Management Continue reading

03-22-17 USCA Responds to Allegations of Corruption in Brazil Processing Facilities

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USCA Responds to Allegations of Corruption in Brazil Processing Facilities

(WASHINGTON) – Following reports this week out of Brazil, the United States Cattlemen’s Association (USCA) has worked quickly to ensure the U.S. meat supply is protected from any shipments of tainted beef. Continue reading

03-22-17 USDA on Tainted Brazilian Meat: None Has Entered U.S., 100 Percent Re-Inspection Instituted

USDA on Tainted Brazilian Meat: None Has Entered U.S., 100 Percent Re-Inspection Instituted

WASHINGTON, March 22, 2017 – Today, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced additional steps to keep the food supply safe for American families in light of the recent investigations of Brazil’s meat industry.

While none of the slaughter or processing facilities implicated in the Brazilian scandal have shipped meat products to the United States, FSIS immediately instituted additional pathogen testing of all shipments of raw beef and ready-to-eat products from Brazil upon hearing reports of the Brazilian investigation.  FSIS has also increased its examination of all these products at ports-of-entry across the country.  The agency will indefinitely maintain its 100% re-inspection and pathogen testing of all lots of FSIS-regulated products imported from Brazil.

“Keeping food safe for American families is our top priority,” said Mike Young, Acting Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture.  “FSIS has strengthened the existing safeguards that protect the American food supply as a precaution and is monitoring the Brazilian government’s investigation closely.” Continue reading

03-22-17 Wyoming’s Burnett Enterprises Honored as a DFA Member of Distinction

BURNETT ENTERPRISES HONORED AS A DFA MEMBER OF DISTINCTION

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (March 21, 2017) – The Burnett family, owners of Burnett Enterprises in Carpenter, Wyo., has been named among the 2017 Members of Distinction by Dairy Farmers of America.

The Members of Distinction program recognizes dairy farmers who excel on their operations, in their communities and in the industry. Honorees inspire others through their actions, leadership and involvement. They represent the best of the dairy industry. DFA comprises more than 13,000 farmer-owners across the United States. Each year, one notable member farm from each of DFA’s seven regional Areas is selected to receive this honor. Burnett Enterprises represents the Cooperative’s Mountain Area. Continue reading

03-22-17 USDA/NASS News: HONEY PRODUCTION

 

HONEY PRODUCTION

United States honey production in 2016 from producers with five or more colonies totaled 162 million pounds, up 3 percent from 2015. There were 2.78 million colonies from which honey was harvested in 2016, up 4 percent from 2015. Yield of honey harvested per colony averaged 58.3 pounds, down 1 percent from the 58.9 pounds in 2015. Colonies which produced honey in more than one State were counted in each State where the honey was produced. Therefore, at the United States level yield per colony may be understated, but total production would not be impacted. Colonies were not included if honey was not harvested. Producer honey stocks were 41.3 million pounds on December 15, 2016, down 2 percent from a year earlier. Stocks held by producers exclude those held under the commodity loan program. Continue reading

03-22-17 Potatoes USA Board Members Sworn In During 2017 Annual Meeting

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Potatoes USA Board Members Sworn In During 2017 Annual Meeting

DENVER (March 22, 2017)— Potatoes USA Board Members were sworn in during its Annual Meeting held in Denver CO, March 13- 16. Of those sworn in, there were 20 new producers and two new importers as well as 16 producers and one importer who were sworn into their second three-year term. The members were sworn in by USDA Representative Hakim Fobia. All Board Members are elected by the potato producers in their states then confirmed and appointed by the Secretary of Agriculture. Members are elected as representatives of their respective states to serve on the Board. They can serve two 3-year terms by being renominated after completion of their first term. The number of producers per state is determined by production volumes provided by USDA at the beginning of each calendar year. The following lists the new Board Members as well as the renominated Board Members appointed to serve for the next three years: Continue reading

03-22-17 NMPF President Says Strengthening Dairy Safety Net Program Must be Priority as Farm Bill Discussions Commence

NMPF President Says Strengthening Dairy Safety Net Program Must be Priority as Farm Bill Discussions Commence

WASHINGTON, D.C. – As Congress begins its deliberations on the next farm bill, improvements to the dairy Margin Protection Program must be a top priority for lawmakers, said Jim Mulhern, president and CEO of the National Milk Producers Federation, who spoke today before the House Agriculture Committee.

During the farm bill hearing on Capitol Hill, Mulhern told committee members that the dairy Margin Protection Program (MPP) is failing to live up to its intended role as a viable economic safety net for farmers, and that a series of changes is needed to restore dairy producers’ confidence in the program. Mulhern’s full testimony can be found here.

“While MPP was, and is, the right approach for the future of federal dairy policy, the program in its current form does not provide meaningful safety net support to the nation’s dairy farmers,” Mulhern said. Continue reading

03-22-17 NFU Urges Administration to Keep COOL as a Priority for Trade Agenda

NFU Urges Administration to Keep COOL as a Priority for Trade Agenda

WASHINGTON – The Trump Administration this week released a list of 24 trade practices, including Country-of-Origin Labeling (COOL), that trade negotiators should prioritize in future negotiations. National Farmers Union (NFU) is urging the administration to keep COOL on the list, and to ensure a reinstatement of COOL would be allowable under any renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA).

“For thirty years, NFU has championed Country-of-Origin Labeling, and we strongly believe the issue is important to American producers and consumers alike,” said NFU President Roger Johnson. “American producers raise the best beef and pork in the world, and they believe consumers should be able to know where the meat at the grocery store came from. The President should stick up for American consumers and producers by ensuring COOL is a priority for his administration’s trade negotiations.” Continue reading

03-22-17 American Agri-Women Supports Wildfire Relief Efforts

 

American Agri-Women Supports Wildfire Relief Efforts 

Dallas, Texas (AgPR) March 22, 2017  American Agri-Women (AAWis heartbroken by the vast devastation from the recent wildfires in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas and Colorado. AAW has an affiliate in each of these states.

AAW will have a wildfire relief fundraiser at its Mid-Year meeting in Dallas, Texas from March 23-26. The funds raised will be divided between the four funds listed here. There will be a “pass the hat” conducted as well as a silent auction of some donated items that include a quilt made from 1930’s reproduction fabrics. There will also be a genomic testing package in the silent auction for the relief efforts. AAW will accept email or phone bids. Please email communiciations@americanagriwomen.org for the phone number. The silent auction closes at noon central time on March 25, 2017.

Donated quilt to be sold with proceeds going to wildfire relief. The quilt measures 66″ by 82″ and is made from 1930’s reproduction fabrics.

Doris Mold, AAW President said recently, “The farmers and ranchers in Texas, Colorado, Kansas and Oklahoma impacted by the recent raging wildfires saw one of their worst nightmares take away many of their dreams. Now, it’s time for us to stand with them as they work to rebuild their lives and those dreams. Please consider donating to one of the following organizations:” Continue reading