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12:41 p.m.
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Brownfield AG News

Lower feed and fertilizer costs

We continue our conversation with Jerry Doan who runs a large cow-calf, grazing and cash-crop operation in North Dakota. Several years ago he took steps to improve the health of his soil including planting a cover crop of a dozen different plants which he then grazes in the winter. He says last year he saved […]

Wisconsin’s newest Master Cheesemakers

Wisconsin is adding to the list of Master Cheesemakers. The three-year program provides advanced training for licensed cheesemakers with at least 10 years of experience. . Cheesemakers can earn certification in up to two cheese varieties at a time and must have been making those varieties as a licensed cheesemaker for a minimum of five […]

Coalition to prop up bridge testing

The Soy Transportation Coalition is offering money to a dozen state departments of transportation to help offset the cost of upgrading to better, more accurate bridge testing equipment. Coalition Executive Director Mike Steenhoek says bridges that farmers depend on to get crops to market are sometimes unnecessarily posted with weight limits. He tells Brownfield that […]

SDFU president suspicious of rail/oil connection

A member of the National Farmers Union Board says the problem with railways putting grain shipments on the back burner is as bad as it’s ever been and congressional investigation is likely needed. Doug Sombke, President of the South Dakota Farmers Union, says the Surface Transportation Board (STB) is not taking the issue seriously enough, “It’s very […]

FAS accepting foreign marketing apps

USDA’s Foreign Ag Service will start accepting applications this week for FY 2015 export development programs. Most of the funding, nearly $172 million is allocated to the Market Access Program (MAP) where USDA helps trade associations, cooperatives, small businesses and trade groups promote and market products in overseas markets. Another $24 million will go to […]

Looks like cash cheese has turned around

After steadily declining for a couple of weeks, prices have been increasing in the cash cheese market this week. Barrels went from $2.25 on April 2nd to $2.075 by April 10. They are now back up to $2.1875. Blocks went from $2.385 down to $2.165 and back up to $2.2225 during the same period. National Dairy […]

Board directs rail industry to provide delivery plans

Given the immediate need for fertilizer for farmers entering the planting season, the Surface Transportation Board will now require reports from the rail industry on its plans to ensure delivery of fertilizer to farmers in the upper Midwest. Steve Sharp president of Consumer United Rail Equity applauds the STB’s decision.  He says, “It’s in the […]

Fundamentals provide support for soybeans

Soybeans were higher on commercial and speculative buying. The near term supply remains tight and demand continues to look strong. China’s first quarter GDP growth was a little better than expected, up 7.4% from this time last year. Still, that was the slowest growth rate in the last year and a half and the slowest […]

Hog futures show gains on higher midday pork values

The cash cattle trade was at a standstill on Wednesday afternoon with just a few bids reported in parts of the North at 240.00. A few cattle sold in Iowa at 150.00 on a live basis. Asking prices remain firm at 149.00 to 150.00 in the South, and 242.00 to 243.00 in the North. Significant […]

Closing Grain and Livestock Futures: April 16, 2014

May corn closed at $4.97 and 1/2, down 6 and 1/4 cents May soybeans closed at $15.18 and 3/4, up 17 and 1/2 cents May soybean meal closed at $491.00, up $3.60 May soybean oil closed at 43.71, up 88 points May wheat closed at $6.88, down 13 and 3/4 cents Apr. live cattle closed […]

Disaster programs now available to producers

Eligible farmers and ranchers can now sign-up for USDA’s disaster assistance programs.  Indiana State Executive Director Julia Wickard says the Farm Service Agency has been waiting a long time to unveil livestock disaster programs.  “We were able to roll out four new disaster programs as permanent law that Congress enacted earlier this year,” she says.  “We’ve […]

Sign-up for livestock disaster assistance programs is underway

Eligible farmers and ranchers can now sign up for the USDA’s livestock disaster assistance programs, which were restored by passage of the 2014 farm bill. USDA deputy secretary of agriculture Krysta Harden was in Nebraska this week to discuss how those programs will help producers who suffered losses due to natural disasters.  One of her stops […]

Pork donations benefit foodbanks

Just ahead of Easter, Ohio pork producers, with support from the Ohio Association of Meat Processors and the Ohio Corn Marketing Program have donated over 16,000 pounds of pork to two area foodbanks. 6,500 pounds of pork has been donated to the Greater Cleveland Food Bank and another 10,000 pounds donated to The Foodbank, Inc. in Dayton. […]

Mandatory reporting of PEDv considered

The executive director of the American Association of Swine Veterinarians says his organization does not have a position on mandatory reporting of the Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus in pigs but believes it could help. PEDv is currently not a reportable animal disease but Tom Burkgren tells Brownfield Ag News the U.S. Department of Agriculture is […]

GMO labeling bill advances in Vermont

A GMO-labeling bill is working its way through the state legislature in Vermont. The House passed a bill late last year which would require products containing genetically modified ingredients to state-so on the label. The Vermont State Senate passed a similar bill this week. That bill will now be reconciled with the House version, once […]

Wednesday midday cash livestock markets

The cash cattle market is off to a slow start on Wednesday with feedlot operators passing on bids of 240.00 in Nebraska, however a few head reportedly were sold there at 242.00 per hundredweight to a regional packer on Tuesday. Packer inquiry should slowly improve today and we should at least start to see some […]

Another blow to the Plains’ wheat crop

Freezing temperatures as far south as central Texas this week may have caused further damage to the Great Plains’ winter wheat crop. However, agronomists say damage to the crop may not be apparent for another week to 10 days. There are a number of factors that determine the extent of freeze damage in wheat, including […]

New Nebraska FFA officers announced

Nebraska FFA has announced its officer team for 2014-15. Pictured, left to right, are Blair Hartman, State Vice President, Imperial FFA Chapter; Colton Flower, State Secretary, Scottsbluff FFA Chapter; Andrea Wach, State Vice President, Hayes Center FFA Chapter; Paige Dexter, State President, Chambers FFA Chapter; Amanda Lambrecht, State Vice President, Blair FFA Chapter; Brandon Nichols, […]

Nutrient management bill takes another step

When the Ohio House passed Senate Bill 150, it was just another step in the process for the so-called nutrient management bill. The bill now goes to the Senate where it is expected to pass and then to the Governor for his signature, 90 days later the bill becomes effective. But beyond that, Adam Ward, […]

Alcohol – How much is too much for health?

There are health concerns about alcohol that may get overlooked when we only consider the behavioral changes that alcohol over-consumption can create.  The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics says, yes, there are studies that show some potential health benefits from drinking.  Red wine, for example, has potential for heart disease prevention.  But, the scale tips […]

Illinois corn and cattle producers coexist well

An Illinois beef industry leader says cattle and corn farmers in the state complement each other very well, no matter what the market is. Illinois Beef Association Executive Vice President Reid Blossom says cattlemen are enjoying a strong market because of high demand and tight supply. He says beef producers also co-exist quite well with […]

Global Dairy Trade prices continue to decline

Global Dairy Trade Auction Tuesday saw overall prices decline 2.6 percent, the fifth consecutive decline at the auction but significantly less than the 8.9 percent tumble two weeks ago. In fact, this is the smallest decline since the February 18th sale. This is the lowest overall average price since February of 2013. The only increase […]

USMEF questions sustainability of Mexican market

U.S. beef exports to Mexico are strong so far this year, but there are questions about whether it can continue. The U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) says the value of beef shipped to Mexico from the U.S. is up 40 percent. However, Meat Export Federation Regional Director Chad Russell says that level may be difficult […]

Wisconsin’s “Alice” finals in one month

Tickets are now on sale for the 67th Alice in Dairyland Finals, May 15-17 in Clark County. Current “Alice”, Kristin Olson says this is a busy time for the six finalists named a couple of weeks ago. They are preparing for what is an intensive three-day interview process at the finals. “They will be giving […]

USDA announces grants for Indian Reservations

Deputy U.S. Agriculture Secretary Krysta Harden was in Green Bay on Tuesday to announce $700,000 in grants to support nutrition education for Native Americans. The grants will go to 15 programs in 11 states through the USDA’s Food Distribution Program on Indian Reservations (FDPIR). FDPIR operates as an alternative to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program […]

Bill aims to stop dropped calls

A bill has been introduced in the U.S. Senate to stop dropped land-line and mobile phone calls in rural areas. Senator Tim Johnson says the problem of dropped calls is a serious public safety threat – as police dispatchers and doctors have experienced dropped calls in critical situations. Johnson says the Federal Communications Commission, FCC, […]

Nebraska farmer welcomed precipitation

Weekend rain and snow brought three-quarters of an inch of precipitation to Mark Jagels’ farm in south-central Nebraska.  Jagels says it was very welcome. “I would say here in south central Nebraska we’re extremely dry,” Jagels says. “We had some moisture there at the last part of harvest—but we really didn’t have any over the […]

Strong session for soybeans, wheat

Soybeans hit new eight month highs on fund and commercial buying. Old crop supplies remain very tight and export demand continues to look solid. Past that – the monthly NOPA crush numbers were much larger than expected and, in fact, a new record for March at 153.84 million bushels. Soybean oil stocks were 2.023 billion […]

Pork was lower and beef was higher on Tuesday

Cattle country was quiet on Tuesday afternoon with bids and asking prices not well defined. DTN reports they have heard of a few showlists priced around 149.00 to 150.00 in the South, and 242.00 243.00 plus in the North. The new showlists distributed on Monday are generally smaller than last week with only Kansas offering more […]

Nebraska ag land valuations continue to rise

The heavy property tax burden being carried by many Nebraska farmers and ranchers may get even heavier. According to a new Nebraska Department of Revenue report, agricultural land valuations statewide are up 29 percent over last year.  Nebraska Farm Bureau president Steve Nelson says that means ag land valuations have doubled since 2009. Nelson says […]

Closing Grain and Livestock Futures: April 15, 2014

May corn closed at $5.03 and 3/4, up 3/4 cent May soybeans closed at $15.01 and 1/4, up 25 cents May soybean meal closed at $487.40, up $8.30 May soybean oil closed at 42.83, up 57 points May wheat closed at $7.01 and 3/4, up 23 cents Apr. live cattle closed at $145.27, down 7 […]

Nutritional needs still important

After a challenging winter, now is not the time to forget about the nutritional needs of beef cows. And while it might be tempting to put cows on grass, John Grimes, Extension beef coordinator at Ohio State University says it may not provide what the cow needs. “Across the country the number one month to […]

Daniels presented Distinguished Service Award

Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) Director Dave Daniels has received the 2014 Distinguished Service Award from the Ohio-West Virginia Youth Leadership Association, the Association’s highest honor. Director Daniels was recognized for his support of 4-H and FFA youth programs in the state. Previous recipients of this award include Chief Justice Thomas J. Moyer, Supreme Court […]

Tuesday midday cash livestock prices

Cattle country is quiet on Tuesday with bids and asking prices not well defined. DTN reports they have heard of a few showlists that have been priced around 149.00 to 150.00 in the South, and 243.00 plus in the North. The new showlists distributed on Monday are generally smaller than last week with only Kansas […]

Weed management strategies

Mark Loux, Extension weed specialist at Ohio State University says a cold, wet start to spring could change weed management strategies. Typically for some farmers, the weed contral strategy is to get out early and apply residual herbicides when weeds are small, for those who made a fall application the strategy may be to wait a […]

Co-Alliance begins Union Mills reconstruction

A grain facility in LaPorte County Indiana damaged by a fire that killed one employee last June will re-open. Co-Alliance, LLP has announced that upgrades to the Union Mills grain facility in LaPorte County, including a 730,000 bushel bin, adding a new 25,000 bushel bin leg and pit, upgrading a rail load out leg and […]

Nebraska legislature creates Water Sustainability Fund

Nebraska lawmakers have given final approval to legislation creating a new water sustainability fund. The fund will help local governments and the state pay for water projects, with an 11 million dollar annual appropriation. Nebraska Farm Bureau president Steve Nelson calls it “a milestone piece of legislation”. He says the difference between this bill and […]

Spring takes a setback in Wisconsin

Just when it started to look like spring was arriving, winter returned to the Badger State on Sunday evening. The weekly Crop Progress Report from the National Ag Statistics Service Wisconsin Field Office says temperatures were 5 to 8 degrees above normal last week and top soil moisture increased slightly as the frost is coming […]

Precipitation welcomed in Nebraska

Although precipitation amounts from weekend rain and snow in Nebraska were generally one inch or less, the precipitation was expecially welcome in areas where drought conditions are the most severe—specifically, south central and southwestern Nebraska. Some areas of south central Nebraska received in excess of one inch of precipitation. The weekly crop progress report for […]

USDA says no corn planted in Ohio

With less than a day suitable for fieldwork last week, not much was accomplished in Ohio. The Ohio field office of the National Ag Statistics Service (NASS) says that as of Sunday, April 13, no corn had been planted, the five year average is two percent. Six percent of the oats crop has been planted, […]

Weather impedes planting in Illinois

Just one-percent of corn had been planted in Illinois as of Sunday. That’s the same amount as this time in 2013. The state Ag Statistics office says with heavy storms and rainfall throughout much of Illinois last week most of the field work consisted of anhydrous application, spring tillage and oat planting. Corn and potato […]

Farm Bureau wants Show-Me farmland owned domestically

The Missouri Farm Bureau wants the Missouri Legislature to cap foreign ownership of farmland at its current level. Since the 1970s state law in Missouri has prohibited foreign entities from owning any farmland in the state, but a bill was passed last year allowing foreign ownership of up to one percent of the state’s farmland. […]

Smithfield parent to offer IPO

The world’s biggest pork producer wants to raise some cash. China’s WH Group, the company that purchased Smithfield Foods says it will offer 3.65 million shares on the Hong Kong stock exchange. Estimates are the shares would sell from $1.03 to $1.45 raising between $4.1 and $5.3 billion (U.S.). The IPO price will be set […]

Water situation improves in part of the West

The water situation has improved in the northern parts of the western United States but not in California and the Southwest. The USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service says most of Idaho, Montana, Wyoming and northern Colorado and Utah received two-to-three times their normal precipitation in April, as a result those areas will have normal to […]

Corn and rice planting make some progress

Nine-percent of Missouri’s corn crop has been planted – as of Sunday. That’s slightly ahead of last year at this time but below the five-year average of 16 percent. Four-percent of rice is planted, behind last year and the average of 22-percent by this time. Temperatures warmed up last week and some rain on Sunday […]

Global dairy demand will grow

The U.K. research firm ReportBuyer says; “The expansion of the global dairy product industry is forecast to reach 8.8% per year in the coming years. Between 2007 and 2013 the market increased with an average annual growth of 5.5%.” The industry report package Dairy Product Markets in the World to 2018 – Market Size, Trends, […]

Driest parts of Iowa receive rain

Portions of western Iowa, the driest part of the state, received some welcome rain this past weekend. Rainfall totals ranged from one to three inches in many parts of southwest and west central Iowa.  Heavier amounts, up to 6 inches or more, fell in eastern Iowa. “The rains that much of the state saw this weekend were generally […]

Little to no corn planted in Indiana

Late spring weather and the aftermath of this past winter has again slowed planting progress this week.  Little to no corn and no soybeans have been planted to date. Sixty percent of the winter wheat crop is rated good to excellent. One-hundred percent of the state’s topsoil moisture and 98 percent of the subsoil moisture […]

Solid start to week for grains, oilseeds

Soybeans were higher on fund and commercial buying. Near term domestic supplies remain tight and the trade wants to keep prices relatively high to ration demand. Still, Brazil’s harvest is wrapping up and Argentina’s starting to pick up steam, and there are worries about more defaults by Chinese buyers. Soybean meal and oil were higher, following […]

Hog and cattle slaughter is lighter than last week

The main item of business in cattle country on Monday was the distribution of the new showlists. This week’s offering of cattle is generally lower with the exception of Kansas which is showing more cattle for sale. Bids and asking prices are not well defined, private sources say some early asking prices are around 149.00 […]