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Web home of The Farm Journal Report.
If you'd like more information about the subjects covered in a show, check the list below for details about recent programs.
August 10: An Oklahoma farmer shares what he thinks about when he's in his favorite place in the world: the combine cab.
August 9: Cow Candy is the creation of Danyel O'Connor of Sun Prairie, Wisconsin. It's a collection of Monterey Jack cheeses in a variety of fruit flavors--and a honey-flavored one, as well.
August 8: Jim Dalglish discovered cowboy poetry after retiring from his executive position with a power company in Grand Forks, North Dakota, and moving to southern Arizona. You can find some of his work at cowboypoetry.com.
August 7: Greg Anderson, a Nebraska farmer and a member of the National Biodiesel Board, suggests that biofuels have been good for everyone in general and rural America in particular. His comments came in the July 11, 2018, edition of the AgriTalk radio show.
August 6: Hay supplies are down because last year was a poor production year. However, the hay crop in some parts of the country--North Dakota, for example--is doing well this year.
August 2-3: The USDA's SARE program (Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education) has started offering a podcast series called Our Farms, Our Future. Dan Kuebler and Emily Wright appeared on the debut edition.
August 1: Olympia, Washington, CPA Linda Keith trains bankers on how to work better with their customers but, on occasion, she also suggests ways that customers can work better with their lenders. Communication is key.
July 31: You can visit the AgNewsWire website to hear the entire interview with Marc Dresner about the American Egg Board's promotional tie-in with The Incredibles 2, a Disney-Pixar film. And, you can watch the 30-second TV ad the Egg Board ran in conjunction with that promotion.
July 30: A recent episode of the AgriTalk radio program featured a roundtable discussion on ag trade and some of it centered on the economic fear level in rural America.
July 27: North Dakota State University Extension livestock specialist Kris Ringwall believes farmers and ranchers could benefit from the occasional show of appreciation to the local grocery store manager for giving shelf space to the products those farmers and ranchers raise.
July 26: Bovine Veterinarian magazine editor John Maday calls for more global cooperation to curtail the potential development of antibiotic-resistant pathogens.
July 25: Television personality Mike Rowe talks about an episode on birthing calves that catapulted his career--and the show he was doing at the time, Dirty Jobs--to new heights.
July 24: Here's the most recent report from the University of Missouri weed science department on dicamba damage at the time today's radio show was produced.
July 23: Dustin Baker of the National Pork Producers Council appeared on the AgriTalk radio program to discuss the impact that a foot and mouth disease outbreak could have on the U.S. agriculture industry. To hear the segment, go to the AgriTalk home page, scroll down the list of archived shows in the media player and click on June 26. On the player timeline, the clip starts at 13:05.
July 20: Margy Eckelkamp is director of content at MachineryPete.com and also the editor of Ag Professional magazine.
July 19: Farm Journal's second AgTech Expo is planned for December 3-5, 2018, in Indianapolis.
July 18: Ground-based robots called TerraSentia are "taught" to identify and destroy weeds in the field.
July 17: The Rantizo drone spray system is being developed to use unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) to spot spray herbicides.
July 16: USDA Undersecretary Ted McKinney keynoted a recent ag conference sponsored by Farmers for Free Trade and the Michigan Farm Bureau.
July 13: The first water buffalo dairy in the United States was started by Tom and Shannon Olson at their Turkey Creek Ranch near Texarkana, Arkansas, back in the early 1990s. The Olsons still raise water buffalo but now, primarily, for breeding stock.
July 9-12: Several persons who've held the title of Chief Agriculture Negotiator of the Office of U.S. Trade Representative participated in a Farm Foundation forum recently to discuss ag trade, now and then. An audio recording of that forum is online.
July 5-6: Tommy Grisafi, a broker with Advance Trading, offers his perspective on the psychology of grain marketing.
July 4: Farmers and others who want to see rural broadband expansion are frustrated by the lack of progress.
July 3: A recent increase in the Federal Reserve's lending rate--and the announcement that more increases are likely yet this year--puts added pressure on net farm income.
July 2: The pork industry has been pulled into trade disputes involving the United States and China and the U.S. and Mexico. That and other factors--such as rising production costs and pig populations--are leading economists to predict higher losses for producers into next year.
June 25-29: The U.S. Senate Finance Committee held a hearing on rural healthcare in May. A video record of the hearing is available here.
June 22: The Bayside Richardson Co-op's cotton gin in Woodsboro, Texas, was a casualty from Hurricane Harvey last year but the facility is expected to be back in full operation by the time this year's cotton crop harvest starts.
June 21: CoBank, a Denver-based agricultural lender, says controlled environment agriculture (indoor farming, greenhouses, etc.) is an expanding industry with growth potential.
June 19-20: The supply/demand imbalance is hurting dairy farmers financially right now. The International Dairy Foods Association and the National Milk Producers Federation are on the case.
June 18: June is Dairy Month. Dairy is big business in Wisconsin, as you can learn from the state's agriculture department and from the dairy farmers themselves.
June 15: As part of an effort to make the beef industry more sustainable, the U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef crafted a sustainability framework to help all stakeholders in the beef value chain identify areas for improvement and implement changes. A public comment period on that framework is open through July 1, 2018.
June 13-14: Ray Starling recently left his post as Special Assistant to President Trump for Agriculture and Agricultural Trade to become chief of staff at the USDA. U.S. Farm Report anchor Tyne Morgan interviewed him prior to the job switch. To see it, click here and in the player for previous episodes, find 5/5/18. The story starts at the 20:20 mark on the clip timer.
June 12: Read more of what Mike Walsten has to say about the current farm financial pinch in a story from the March issue of Farm Journal magazine.
June 11: The USDA put together a lengthy set of proposed rules for labeling bioengineered foods and a public comment period on those rules runs through July 3, 2018. You can learn more in the story from AgDay television.
June 8: Emily Zweber of Zweber Farms in Elko, Minnesota, was part of a panel at the February Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C. She and fellow panelists talked about ways to assist young and beginning farmers around the world. You can hear the panel starting at the 1:48:05 mark of the video recording of the summit.
June 7: Cecily Upton is co-founder of the nonprofit FoodCorps. She participated in a panel discussion about Cultivating the Food and Agriculture Movement at the Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C. in Feburary. You can hear the panel starting at the 3-hour (3:00:30) mark of the video recording of the summit.
June 4-6: Farmers and chemical applicators are adjusting to changes affecting use of dicamba herbicides this year. U.S. Farm Report did a story on it in the April 21/22 episode. To see it, click here and in the player for previous episodes, find 4/21/18. The story starts at the 20:20 mark on the clip timer.
June 1: The Smithsonian's National Museum of American History is hosting the American Enterprise Exhibition currently, which includes historic examples of how innovation drove advancements in the agriculture industry.
May 31: Lindsey Shute is the executive director of the National Young Farmers Coalition and was part of a panel at the February Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C. She and fellow panelists talked about policy issues related to young and beginning farmers. You can hear the panel starting at the 8:16:20 mark of the video recording of the summit.
May 30: Curt Covington, an executive VP with Farmer Mac, suggests that alternative farm lenders can be a valuable option for farmers and ranchers who, for various reasons, no longer qualify to borrow from their normal lender.
May 29: Anne Schwartz operates Blue Heron Farm near Rockport, Washington. She was part of a panel discussing agriculture policy for the future at the 2018 Seattle Foodtank Summit in March. You can watch a video of that panel discussion here.
May 28: Precision ag consultant and farmer Steve Cubbage of Nevada, Missouri, is dismayed at the agriculture sector's low ranking in the recently released McKinsey Global Institute's Digitization Index. Cubbage's consulting business is Record Harvest.
May 23-25: Family business consultant Lance Woodbury of Ag Progress in Garden City, Kansas, says conflict is a normal occurrence in family farming businesses.
May 22: Maggie Holub of Scribner, Nebraska, not only farms 700 acres of corn and soybeans essentially on her own, she also holds down a full-time off-farm job with Farm Credit Services of America. Maggie was the 2018 winner of Top Producer magazine's Tomorrow's Top Producer Horizon Award.
May 21: The Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board has changed its "doing business as" name to Dairy Farmers of Wisconsin to give consumers clarity as to what the organization is about.
May 18: Learn more about mushroom grower Kevin Fitzgerald and his company, Sun Valley Harvest in Glendale, Arizona, on his company's Facebook page and from this Wordpress site.
May 16-17: M.J. Altman of the World Food Program USA was part of a panel at the February Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C. She and fellow panelists talked about ways to assist young and beginning farmers around the world. You can hear the panel starting at the 1:48:05 mark of the video recording of the summit.
May 15: Learn more about the WEEDit spot spray technology as covered by Farm Journal, and also from the website for AgriTech America, the distributor of WEEDit.
May 14: For a transcript of the AgDay television/Farm Journal College TV interview with FJ field agronomist Ken Ferrie about determining the cost of a crop rotation, click here and look under the subheading FARM JOURNAL COLLEGE TV.
May 11: For a transcript of the AgDay television interview with Purdue ag economist, Chris Hurt, on the economic impact of expansion in the livestock sector, click here and look under the subheading AGRIBUSINESS.
May 10: John Piotti, president of American Farmland Trust, was one of the keynote speakers at the Food Tank Summit in Seattle on March 17, 2018. Watch his talk here.
May 9: For a transcript of the story on AgDay television on the beef industry's role in examining antibiotic resistance, click here and look under the subheading DROVERS TV.
May 8: A study by the University of Missouri (with cooperation from South Dakota State University and Purdue University) examines the ways ag professionals like extension agents and USDA employees communicate with Amish and conservative Mennonite farmers.
May 7: For a transcript of the interview on AgDay television with University of Missouri ag economist Scott Brown's outlook on dairy, click here and look under the subheading ANALYSIS.
May 4: A biochar product called Cool Terra is being marketed as a soil amendment in farm fields. It's promoted as a way to improve soil health while sequestering carbon in the soil.
May 3: Wild pigs have been targeted for eradication by various wildlife and agricultural agencies, but some of those agencies' efforts have been hampered by landowners who don't allow access to their lands for that purpose. Steve Backs of the Indiana Department of Natural Resources says the pigs are an invasive species and, when the pigs find a refuge on a property, there's nothing to stop them causing damage to neighboring properties, as well.
May 2: Erich Eller's business, Forefront Ag Solutions in Huntington, Indiana, uses drone technology to help farmer customers. Eller says he thinks unmanned aerial vehicles (drones) will play an even greater role for agriculture in the future.
May 1: Bree Goldschmidt and her husband, Nathan, own and operate MOARK Agricultural Research in Fisk, Missouri. Nathan is the current president of the National Alliance of Independent Crop Consultants. Both of them believe that people in the agriculture community should be doing more to advocate for agriculture and to correct misconceptions about the quality and safety of our country's food supply.
April 30: Mark Poeschl heads the National FFA Organization and was part of a panel at the February Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C. He and fellow panelists talked about policy issues related to young and beginning farmers. You can hear the panel starting at the 8:16:20 mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 27: Haile Thomas is the teen founder and CEO of The Happy Organization, a nonprofit focused on improving the food system. She talked at Food Tank's February summit in Washington, D.C. You can view her contribution at the 8:45:10 mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 26: Scott Sibbel raises cattle and hogs near Carroll, Iowa, for the Niman Ranch brand. He spoke briefly about his experience at Food Tank's February summit in Washington, D.C. You can view his contribution at the 3:58:25 mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 25: Intended plantings for barley have increased significantly in Virginia, Maryland, and Delaware, in part because of the increased demand from the craft beer industry. Proximity Malt recently opened a new malting facility in Laurel, Maryland, that will use around 25,000 metric tons of barley annually.
April 23-24: Clinton Griffiths, host of the Ag Day television program, interviewed agriculture secretary Sonny Perdue in Washington in late March. An extended excerpt from that interview may be accessed here (look in the archive for the April 2 episode).
April 19-20: The University of Maryland's Institute of Applied Agriculture offers a hands-on approach to training students in agriculture. Part of that involves the college-owned Terp Farm. A lecturer and advisor at the Institute, Meredith Epstein, and her husband, Guy Kilpatric--manager of the Terp Farm--spoke briefly about their work at Food Tank's February summit in Washington, D.C. You can view their contribution at the 7:21:10 mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 18: Roger Johnson, president of the National Farmers Union, was part of a panel at the February Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C. He and fellow panelists talked about policy issues related to young and beginning farmers. You can hear the panel starting at the 8:16:20 mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 17: Mara Fleishman is the CEO of the Chef Ann Foundation. She participated in a panel discussion about Cultivating the Food and Agriculture Movement at the Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C. in Feburary. You can hear the panel starting at the 3-hour (3:00:30) mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 16: David Hula of Charles City, Virginia, broke the world record for corn yield last year with a 542-bushel-per-acre crop. Here's a video story on that from Genesis Ag's YouTube channel.
April 13: Juan Aguiar works as a janitor but is hoping to buy some land from his father and start a flower farm with his wife in Arizona.
April 12: Shawn Hackett is with Hackett Financial Advisors.
April 11: Arlan Suderman is the chief commodities economist for INTL FCStone.
April 10: Pam Fretwell interviews Nancy Kavazanjian, board member of the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance, about the film documentary, Food Evolution, in the 1/23/2018 episode of Pam's Consumer Ag Connection podcast.
April 9: Read more of what Jim Dickrell, editor emeritus of Dairy Herd Management, has to say to dairy farmers worried about low milk prices.
April 6: Julie Linder farms with her father near Norwalk, Ohio. They are able to get two crops a year from the same ground by interseeding soybeans into wheat. Julie talks about it with Farm Journal's Pam Fretwell in the Straight from the Heartland podcasts on December 28th and January 2nd. (To hear the full podcasts, click this link, then scroll down the list of the recent episodes on the right side of the player window. You'll see a listing for 12-28-17, which is Part 1. The one above that is for 1-2-18.)
April 5: Jill Isenbarger is CEO of Stone Barns Center for Food and Agriculture, just north of New York City. She was at the February 28th Food Tank Summit in Washington, D.C., and part of a panel discussion about Advocating for Future Farmers and Eaters. You can hear the panel starting at the 6-hour (6:00:00) mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 4: Andrew Steer is President/CEO of World Resources Institute, a Washington, D.C., nonprofit. He says consumers are as responsible as farmers for making sure there's enough food for the world's population in the future. Steer spoke at the February 28th Food Tank Summit in Washington. You can hear his brief keynote starting at the 48:15 mark of the video recording of the summit.
April 3: Chip Nellinger is with Blue Reef Marketing in Morton, Illinois.
April 2: Ryan Findlay is the new CEO of the American Soybean Association, a policy-focused group supported by member contributions (not checkoff funds).
March 30: The Arizona Winegrowers Association is actively working to promote the state's wine industry. Brian Predmore of Alcantara Vineyards in Cottonwood is the association's president.
March 29: Merkin Vineyards and Gardens is switching its outdoor produce growing operation to hydroponic production. Much of what they grow is used in the restaurant at the Merkin Vineyards Tasting Room and Osteria in Cottonwood, Arizona.
March 27-28: BJ and Catherine Davis operate The Fish's Garden, an aquaponics facility in Camp Verde, Arizona.
March 26: Get a copy of Firestone's seven-step tire checklist.
March 23: Dick Gehring of Black Kettle Buffalo in Moundridge, Kansas, is president of the National Bison Association.
March 22: Tony Shelton of Cornell University (Geneva, New York campus) has been working with genetically-engineered insects for use in controlling other crop insect pests.
March 21: Wayne Springer of Gregory, South Dakota, is concerned that many farmers will be going out of business as a result of the sustained slump in commodity market prices.
March 19-20: Purdue University professor Bill Field is often tapped as an expert witness in legal proceedings involving farm liability actions.
March 16: Sarah Beth Aubrey, an executive coach and columnist for Top Producer magazine, recommends a procedure to create a one-page strategic plan for your farm or ranch in one hour or less.
March 12-15: The February 13th Farm Foundation Forum covered the economics of the next farm bill.
March 9: The Neligh-Oakdale High School in Neligh, Nebraska, recently restarted its FFA program after nearly 15 years without one.
March 8: Agronomist Phil Needham's specialty is wheat. He and his wife operate Needham Ag Technologies, LLC, in Calhoun, Kentucky.
March 6-7: Pat Duncanson of Mapleton, Minnesota, likes to shake things up a bit on his farm. Duncanson's production of a "purple" corn crop is an example.
March 5: The University of Missouri School of Medicine has an initiative in place to address the shortage of adequate health care for residents in the mostly rural counties of the state.
March 1-2: Dr. Curtis Livesay, a certified crop advisor from Gig Harbor, Washington, has been working with growers of medical marijuana. He says marijuana as a crop is representative of the sort of diversification he believes is necessary for traditional row crop producers to go beyond commodity agriculture.
February 28: At just 12 years of age, Evan Kirkpatrick planted, tended, and harvested a five-acre soybean crop on land his grandparents own near Dumas, Arkansas. Farm Journal's Chris Bennett provides the story.
February 27: The Schrack Farm near Loganton, Pennsylvania, was named the 2018 Innovative Dairy Farm by Dairy Herd Management and the International Dairy Foods Association.
February 26: The USDA is predicting a 6.7% decrease in net farm income in 2018. The $59.5 billion figure is the lowest since 2006.
February 23: Watch a group of high school culinary students visit a cattle ranch near Fort Stockton, Texas to learn how beef is raised.
February 22: A free set of farm safety checklists is available for downloading from the Upper Midwest Agricultural Safety and Health (UMASH) Center, located at the University of Minnesota.
February 21: Rena Streigel is president of Transition Point Business Advisors in Des Moines, Iowa. The company specializes in business continuity and transition planning, helping businesses create entrepreneurial operating systems, and leadership development and executive coaching.
February 20: ESN is a polymer encapsulated nitrogen fertilizer designed to release the nitrogen to the crop in a controlled fashion. The technology seeks to prevent problems with excess moisture and other loss mechanisms.
February 19: It was 100 years ago that the John Deere company got into the tractor business, with the purchase of the Waterloo Gasoline Engine Company. The company is planning some public events around the anniversary celebration over Father's Day weekend in Waterloo, Iowa.
February 16: Albany, Minnesota, farmer Bill Koenig participated in a two-year test using wood-chip fired heating in one of his poultry barns. An identical barn nearby used traditional propane fuel for heat. The test demonstrated a substantial fuel cost savings. Koenig also reported a much lower cost-per-pound-of-production expense in the wood-heated barn.
February 14-15: Greg Judy operates Green Pastures Farm in Rucker, Missouri. He's written a couple of books about his method of animal agriculture and is a sought-after speaker on the subject of sustainable livestock and poultry production.
February 13: Schiff Farms has operations in Delaware, Maryland, Nebraska, and Wyoming.
February 12: Get up to date information on used machinery pricing and availability at MachineryPete.com.
February 9: Restaurants and food retailers are busy studying the likes and dislikes of millennials in order to do a better job marketing to this population segment. Some folks from Walmart and McDonald's offered their take in the January 11 edition of AgDay television.
February 8: Smart Farm is the term used by the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance to describe a sustainable form of agricultural production that uses the latest technologies.
February 7: Tanner Ehmke offers a bit of economic hope for farmers by predicting a recovery over the next three years in the grains and ethanol markets. Ehmke is manager of the Knowledge Exchange Division of Denver-based CoBank.
February 6: Tim Koch, Senior VP and Chief Credit Officer of Farm Credit Services of America in Omaha, recommends farmers scrutinize their costs closely in this time of low commodity prices.
February 5: John Phipps, Illinois farmer and commentator/columnist for Farm Journal Media, tells why he feels having an annual operating plan for your farm--even one that falls short of expectations--is better than having no plan at all.
February 2: Dave Johnson of DuPont Crop Protection recommends that farmers resist the urge to scale back on weed control to save money, as it could lead to setbacks in the fight against herbicide-resistant weed species.
February 1: Enogen Feed corn varieties from Syngenta are promoted as offering feed efficiency gains up to 5% in high-producing dairy cows.
January 31: Alan Hoskins, CEO of American Farm Mortgage and Financial Services in Louisville, Kentucky, suggests farmers evaluate the profitability of each of their land parcels to see about dropping those that are not profitable. He was interviewed on the January 4 edition of AgDay television.
January 30: The University of Tennessee's Middle Tennessee Research and Education Center teams with Columbia State Community College to give CSCC's veterinary technician students access to working dairy animals.
January 29: Steve Georgy is a vice president at Allendale, Inc., in McHenry, Illinois. Steve talked on the AgDay television program about the increased demand for U.S. pork in South Korea, in the runup toward the 2018 Winter Olympics there.
January 25-26: George McDonald runs Catesa Farms about 50 miles from Nashville, Tennessee. Over the years, he's modified the types of crops he grows based on the changing demands of his customers. His farm includes about 315 acres that were part of The Hermitage, a plantation owned and operated by the seventh president of the United States, Andrew Jackson.
January 24: HarvXtra alfalfa is marketed by Winfield United and boasts greater forage yields with fewer cuttings, and better digestibility because there's less lignin in the plant.
January 23: The Rural Jobs Coalition is a nonpartisan nonprofit lobbying group advocating for rural economic incentives.
January 22: Tim Andriesen is managing director of agricultural products for the CME Group.
January 17-19: Lynn Paulson is head of the agricultural lending department for Bell Bank, headquartered in Fargo, North Dakota. He also owns farmland in the state.
January 16: Tommy Grisafi is president and CEO of Indiana Grain Company.
January 15: The Ag Economy Barometer is a joint effort of Purdue University and the CME Group to create an indicator of the way farmers are looking at their economic prospects.
January 11-12: Business transition expert Scot Hunsaker, author of Heroic Ownership, says a very large percentage of small businesses go under when leadership changes occur and the business has failed to plan for the transition.
January 8-10: Among those attending the AgTech Expo in Indianapolis in December was Dino Giacomazzi, a dairy and almond farmer from California. He says some of the technology that's being introduced these days is "looking" for ways to be applied to agriculture. And, commodities broker Jim Bower--while nostalgic for the past trading admosphere at the Board of Trade--says technology has transformed ag markets into such a fast-paced activity, farmers have to really be on the ball to keep up.
January 5: The Renewable Fuels Association maintains that ethanol has a solid future as a transportation fuel in the United States.
January 4: The National Association of Wheat Growers is busy seeking support for its position on the next farm bill.
January 3: Makers of dicamba herbicides (including BASF) are amping up their applicator training programs and taking additional stewardship measures to try to curb the kind of dicamba-related issues that occurred last growing season.
January 2: A fertilizer for gardens and potted plants made from waste wool is a finalist in the American Farm Bureau Federation's Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge. Water Wise Wool Pellets was developed at Wild Valley Farms in Croydon, Utah. The winner of the Rural Entrepreneurship Challenge will be chosen on January 7 at 11:00am Central during an event live-streamed from the AFBF national convention. Viewers will be able to vote for the People's Choice prize given to one of the four finalists in the competition.
January 1: Winfield United's new 55,000 sq. ft. Innovation Center is now in operation in River Falls, Wisconsin.
December 29: Pork producers in the United States are counting on healthy international markets to keep demand strong.
December 28: University of Minnesota senior Gabe Duncanson had a rather unconventional internship last summer. Duncanson is majoring in agricultural communications and marketing. His internship consisted of stays of one to two weeks on each of several different farms across the country.
December 26-27: My mother died in September and I dedicated these two episodes as a memorial tribute to her. Rosemari "Rosie" Anderson was a farm wife for practically all her adult life.
December 25: Jim Gulliford, administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's Region 7 (Missouri, Nebraska, Kansas, Iowa, and nine tribal nations), says he would like the EPA to be viewed by farmers as more of an educator than an enforcer.
December 22: Don Close, the animal protein analyst for Rabo AgriFinance's RaboResearch Food and Agribusiness group, says beef expansion may run into a bottleneck with slaughter capacity limitations. However, he also predicts that continued low grain prices will help keep production costs down for beef producers.
December 20-21: The National Young Farmers Coalition has created what it calls the Young Farmer Agenda, an effort to pursuade state and federal ag policymakers to focus on assisting young people who wish to get into farming or ranching.
December 19: The beef checkoff program has revived the very successful "Beef: It's What's for Dinner" marketing campaign with a series of short videos about beef production.
December 18: The U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service has sent out questionnaires for the 2017 Census of Agriculture. Farmers are required by law to complete the census (either the paper or online versions) by February 5, 2018. Results will not be reported by USDA/NASS until early 2019.
December 14-15: Microsoft's Rural Airband Initiative is working on ways to use empty over-the-air television channels to extend broadband internet service to unserved or underserved parts of rural America. Microsoft also has a project it calls FarmBeats that would provide a lower-cost way for farmers to get soil moisture and soil nutrient maps and to interpret the data from those maps.
December 13: Farmer Mac has just released the Winter 2017/18 edition of The Feed, a quarterly perspective on all things agriculture-related.
December 11-12: Jason Hafemeister, Trade Counsel to Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue, maintains that international trade is crucial to the economic health of American agriculture.
December 8: A company called tru Shrimp is building a shrimp farm in southern Minnesota that is expected to produce more than 8 million pounds of shrimp annually.
December 6-7: The American Farmland Trust has new research showing that the loss of farmland in the United States is more extensive than was thought previously. A report is scheduled to be released this month. Watch for the news here.
December 5: Protect the Harvest warns that a rule scheduled to go into effect December 18, 2017, requiring truckers to have electronic logging devices will have a negative impact on farmers and ranchers.
December 4: The Soil and Water Conservation Society is hosting a national conference on cover crops and soil health on Dec. 7-8 in Indianapolis.
December 1: Sea lice are infesting farmed salmon populations and causing headaches for aquaculture companies. Some innovative solutions are being used to combat these parasites.
November 30: You can watch a video clip from the AgDay television program about Adam Faust, a Wisconsin dairy farmer who has implemented equipment modifications on his farm to allow him to work even with a disability.
November 28-29: Michele Payn is a farmer, an author, and a public speaker from Indiana who focuses on advocating for agriculture. Her latest book is Food Truths from Farm to Table.
November 27: The fertilizer handling industry formed its own nonprofit entity to assist companies in becoming compliant with federal and state regulations affecting their business.
November 24: The USDA reports that cropland values (averaged nationwide) were unchanged from mid-2016 to mid-2017. Mike Walsten, editor of the LandOwner newsletter (a Farm Journal publication) expects some minor variations to occur but he sees the leveling off as a good sign. He thinks farmers have been conservative with land purchases since commodities prices fell off in recent years.
November 22-23: The Association of Equipment Manufacturers reports an increase this fall in sales of new combines and 4WD tractors. At the same time, Greg Peterson of MachineryPete.com says a lot of tractors are coming off-lease and entering the used tractor marketplace.
November 21: Hurricanes disrupted shipping at various ports in the United States, prompting Mike Steenhoek, executive director of the Soy Transportation Coalition, to suggest the country focus on strengthening our transportation infrastructure and even developing alternative shipping options to use in the event of stoppages.
November 20: Gary Schnitkey, an ag economist with the University of Illinois, says crop inputs--with the probable exception of fertilizer--will likely cost about the same in 2018 as they did this year. Fertilizer will likely be $10-15 per acre cheaper, he says. Schnitkey also predicts crop prices will remain the same as this year, as well.
November 13-17: The Farm Foundation held a public forum recently on the infrastructure needs of rural America. Audio from that forum (and others previous to this) is archived here.
November 8-10: Tom Okie is an assistant professor of history at Kennesaw State University in Georgia who specializes in agricultural history.
November 7: Country music superstar Luke Bryan, who grew up on a Georgia farm, does a concert "Farm Tour" each year to pay tribute to farming families and raise money for college scholarships for students from farming communities.
November 6: Dairy farms in South Dakota and Nebraska are producing more milk than local processors can handle. In fact, much of that production is going out of state. As a result, the South Dakota Department of Agriculture and the Nebraska State Dairy Association are trying to recruit processors.
November 2-3: Nebraska journalist Ted Genoways new book, This Blessed Earth: A Year in the Life of an American Farm Family, is now out. The book is an account of Genoways' experience with the Hammond family of Benedict, Nebraska. Genoways spent a significant part of Fall 2014 through Fall 2015 with the Hammonds and shares their story.
November 1: Steve Cubbage, a precision ag consultant and farmer from Nevada, Missouri, suggests that precision agriculture began 25 years ago with the commercial release of the first combine yield monitor.
October 31: Visitors come to the Kuehnert Dairy Farm near Fort Wayne, Indiana, each year for the farm's annual Fall Festival. Sarah Kuehnert is well qualified to answer their questions about dairy foods. She's a registered dietitian as well as a dairy farmer.
October 30: Manitowoc, Wisconsin, crop consultant Steve Hoffman says agricultural organizations should be more vocal in support of their industry. Hoffman is the 2017 president of the National Alliance of Independent Crop Consultants.
October 25-27: Travis Davis grew up on a cattle ranch in northwestern South Dakota. He now works on rocket engine valves as an engineer for NASA. His rural background helped him land key interships with John Deere and Caterpillar that led to his connection with NASA.
October 24: Sola Gratia Farm in Urbana, Illinois, serves as a provider of fresh produce to local residents in need. The farm's operators also instruct local kids how to grow their own food.
October 23: University of Wisconsin-Madison researchers report that cow comfort has a dramatic impact on milk production in dairies.
October 16-20: Jason Clay, Senior VP, Markets and Food for the World Wildlife Fund, delivered a lecture recently at Kansas State University on "Feeding the World, Sustaining the Planet." You can view archived video of this lecture.
October 13: One of the purposes of the AgChat Foundation is to encourage farmers and ranchers to work together to send a message to consumers about the good things agriculture is doing. Executive Director Jenny Schweigert says when farmers take potshots at each other, it takes away from that message.
October 12: The U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Beef was formed in 2015 as "a multi-stakeholder initiative developed to advance, support, and communicate continuous improvement in sustainability of the U.S. beef value chain."
October 11: Matt and Marie Raboin make hard cider from the apples they grow on their farm near Barneveld, Wisconsin. Their company, Brix Cider, markets mainly in the Madison area.
October 10: Safety guidelines for youths working on the farm or ranch have been updated.
October 9: In the Summer/Fall 2017 edition of The Feed from Farmer Mac, livestock producers are projected to do better than their crop-raising counterparts and the overall farm income picture for 2017 is seen as improving over last year.
October 6: Though he's only 14 years old, Jake Riesdorf of Carmel, California, has his own beekeeping business and honey company. Riesdorf was honored by the Bayer Corporation for his work in promoting pollinators.
October 5: University of Wisconsin trials on growing tomatoes in high tunnels or hoop houses is helping to determine which tomato varieties grow best under those conditions. Advantages include a longer growing season, fewer disease problems, and higher yields overall.
October 4: Industrial hemp is making a comeback, thanks in part to efforts of folks like Brian Furnish, who raises hemp in Cynthiana, Kentucky, on land his family had grown tobacco on for generations.
October 3: A number of northern Michigan beef producers have shifted to grass feeding to take advantage of a local commitment to sourcing pasture-raised beef. They were assisted by Jason Rowntree of Michigan State University.
October 2: Tom Tracy, president and CEO of Farm Credit Illinois, thinks a lot of farmers went into the current downturn in the ag economy in a strong financial position and he suggests that has a lot to do with fewer farms than expected being in financial distress at the moment.
September 29: The Andersons, an agribusiness company based in Maumee, Ohio, gives back to the community in a number of ways.
September 28: If you rent farmland, it's good to stay in touch with your landlords and don't be afraid to tell them how things are going.
September 26-27: The Centers for Disease Control reports that even though rural Americans get cancer less often than their urban counterparts, the mortality rate from cancer is higher with rurals. The AgriSafe Network recommends regular physical exams to help diagnose problems as early as possible.
September 25: Arkansas cotton gins stay in business by updating technologies and equipment.
September 22: Former rescue dogs help with the truffle harvest in Tasmania.
September 21: Farm leaders and others offered opinions to correspondent Michelle Rook at the recent Farm Fest event in Morgan, Minnesota. Her report was included in the August 15th edition of the AgDay television program.
September 20: Google is teaming with 4-H on computer education for young folks.
September 19: Government agencies and health groups are targeting opioid abuse problems in rural America.
September 18: Farmers with stored old crop corn are facing a short window of selling opportunity before that bin space is needed for the new crop. Marketing expert Mike North of Commodity Risk Management Group (Platteville, Wisconsin) says a significant price rise is not likely for corn, unless yield forecasts are revised downward.
September 11-15: As trade officials from the United States, Canada, and Mexico continue discussing the future of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), correspondents with Farm Journal visited with folks on both sides of the U.S.-Mexico border who have a stake in the outcome of those discussions. Here are links to expanded coverage of this week's programs: Monday Tuesday Wednesday Thursday Friday
September 8: Farmers do care about water quality and they're willing to work with their city neighbors to address water quality issues. An example is Yahara Pride Farms, a nonprofit started by local farmers to develop sustainable water solutions in the watershed surrounding Madison, Wisconsin.
September 6-7: Sara Burnett of Panera Bread says her company is very much involved in providing diners at their restaurants with "clean" food choices, and also sourcing meats that are antibiotic-free. But, she adds, that does not mean the company is opposed to all antibiotic uses in meat animal production. Burnett was part of a panel on Farm and Food Innovations at the Foodtank Summit in Boston last April.
September 5: Lindsey Shute, who operates a farm with her husband in upstate New York (she's also the executive director and co-founder of the National Young Farmers Coalition), encourages young farmers to consider livestock production--even though the enterprise is a target of animal welfare activists. Shute was part of a panel discussion on How to Make Farming More Attractive to Youth at the Foodtank Summit in Boston last April.
September 4: A Wisconsin dairy family had to sell their herd when, as a result of a Canadian import rule change, their processor cancelled their milk contract.
August 30-September 1: Rep. Jim McGovern (D., 2nd District) of Massachusetts pledges his support of continued nutrition funding in the next farm bill, as well as support for the portions of the bill that directly impact farmers and ranchers. McGovern delivered a keynote on the subject at the Foodtank Summit in Boston last April.
August 29: The University of Missouri is partnering with CoxHealth and Mercy Health Systems to build a new Patient-Centered Care Learning Center on the MU campus in Columbia, and a clinical campus facility in Springfield in an effort to keep more medical graduates working in the state--specifically, in underserved rural areas of Missouri.
August 28: The National Pork Producers Council supports the bill known as the "No Regulation Without Representation Act of 2017," which would prevent states from passing laws or regulations that would ban the sale of out-of-state products that don't meet their criteria.
August 25: Charlie Arnot, CEO of the Center for Food Integrity, says the ways people shop for their food are changing from traditional methods. Also, he says, shoppers are also placing a much greater emphasis on freshness of the food they buy.
August 24: The newly-appointed chair of the Ag Economics department at Purdue University, Jayson Lusk, says events like Amazon's recent buyout of Whole Foods send ripples all the way through the food supply chain--and those ripples have an impact on farms and ranches.
August 23: Purdue University ag economist Mike Boehlje told a group at the recent Tomorrow's Top Producer seminar that farmers need to think like CEOs. His message was to look for opportunities during times of economic stress.
August 22: U.S. sugar producers hope to maintain provisions in the federal farm policy that protect them from trade violations by foreign competitors.
August 21: The most recent quality audit of the Beef Quality Assurance program shows areas of improvement since the last audit five years ago, but also areas where more work is needed.
August 18: Farmers in Frio County, Texas, show consumers where their food comes from and how much farmers actually get from the retail food dollar.
August 17: North Dakota farmers and ranchers are cutting hay on CRP acres in drought-stricken regions of the state.
August 16: Rabobank forecasts higher demand overseas for U.S. alfalfa. Western states are expected to benefit most, since they already account for about 90% of hay exports.
August 15: The Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation (Farmer MAC) and the American Bankers Association jointly surveyed ag lenders and found that about 90% of those lenders have seen declining farm profitability in the last 12 months.
August 14: Bob Utterback operates Utterback Marketing Services, a commodities brokerage firm in New Richmond, Indiana.
August 11: Batey Farms offers pick-your-own crops like strawberries, blueberries, and blackberries, as well as other produce. The farm is near Murphreesboro, Tennessee.
August 10: Ken Ferrie is an agronomist who supervises the test plots in the Farm Journal Field Test program.
August 9: The Women, Food, and Agriculture Network's mission is to engage women in building an ecological and just food and agricultural system through individual and community power.
August 8: The USDA's Farm Service Agency operates a microloan program to help young and beginning farmers. One example of how the program operates is the story of Little Wild Things City Farm in Washington, D.C.
August 7: Paul Willis of Niman Ranch says his company offers scholarships to young people to help them come back to the farm with less student loan debt.. (Willis was part of a Foodtank panel discussion on making farming more attractive to youth. Video from the panel is available here, and Willis's comments come at about 03:30 into the clip.) Niman Ranch is a producer and marketer of naturally-raised beef, pork, and lamb.
August 4: Greg Thurman is board president of the U.S. Custom Harvesters, Inc., a trade association for custom harvesters.
August 3: Chris Galen is the Senior Vice President for Communications at the National Milk Producers Federation. You can read more about the Dairy Pride Act here.
August 2: Dr. Kevin Folta chairs the Horticulture Science department at the University of Florida. The documentary film, Food Evolution, is not expected to be shown in very many traditional movie theaters but groups and individuals can arrange for showings in other venues. You can also watch a trailer for the film here.
August 1: Dr. Aaron Hager is a weed specialist in Extension with the University of Illinois.
July 31: Parts of Montana and North Dakota were recently assigned D4 status--Exceptional Drought. The United States Drought Monitor shows that area to be having the most severe drought in the entire country right now. Doug Kluck, Central Region Climate Services Director with NOAA, says the drought is expected to persist in that area.
July 28: A group of students at Kansas State University took first place in the Demonstration Project category in the Environmental Protection Agency's Rainworks Challenge in 2016. Students were asked to design innovative "green" plans for managing stormwater runoff on their campuses.
July 27: Timothy Griffin from Tufts University in Boston says converting a farm from one enterprise to another doesn't happen overnight. (Griffin was part of a Foodtank panel discussion on making farming more attractive to youth. Video from the panel is available here, and Griffin's comments come at about 26:20 into the clip.)
July 24-26: The Wildfire Relief Challenge is a collaboration between The Farm Journal Foundation, Drovers magazine, and the Howard G. Buffett Foundation to raise funds to help pay for materials and labor to restore thousands of miles of fencing lost in spring wildfires. The Buffett Foundation will match the first $1 million in donations made up through July 31.
July 21: The Kellogg Company has farmers tell their stories to help educate consumers about their food at a website called Open for Breakfast.
July 20: Matthew Dillon, Director of Agricultural Policy and Programs for the Clif Bar Company, suggests that land grant universities do more in the way of seed breeding for the benefit of local or regional production. (Dillon was part of a Foodtank panel discussion on making farming more attractive to youth. Video from the panel is available here, and Dillon's comments come at about 14:35 into the clip.)
July 19: A device called the Mighty Mite Killer raises and maintains the temperature in a beehive to the point where parasitic varroa mites infecting the bees are killed, but the bees are not harmed.
July 17-18: Consolidation may be a good thing when it comes to farm cooperatives, according to research by Dr. Keri Jacobs, professor of economics at Iowa State University.
July 14: Follow the world of farm machinery--including collectibles and antiques--at the Machinery Pete website.
July 13: Farm bankruptcy rates are not a dramatic as one might expect, based on research by economists Ani Katchova and Robert Dinterman at The Ohio State University, but they could rise.
July 12: Jim Dickrell, editor of Dairy Herd Management, offers some observations about the return on investment for various precision dairy technologies.
July 11: Minnesota has legislated a program to assist young and beginning farmers by offering tax credit incentives to landowners who rent or sell land or assets to those beginning farmers. The law takes effect in 2018.
July 10: The Spring 2017 issue of The Feed, a quarterly analysis of agriculture by Farmer Mac, includes information about the rising cost of farm labor and the shortage of workers to fill farm jobs.
July 7: The National Pork Producers Council and other farm groups are encouraging support for a farm bill provision to bolster the vaccine bank for foot and mouth disease.
July 6: Mike Steenhoek is executive director of the Soy Transportation Coalition.
July 5: The Farmers National Company provides professional farm management services to farmland owners, as well as real estate sales.
July 4: The Rural Mainstreet Index tracks the status of the rural economy in the United States. It's produced by Creighton University in Omaha, Nebraska.