Ashburn VA

Tuesday
Chance of a Thunderstorm
96°F / 73°F
Wind: 1 SE
Average Humidity: 81
The Next Three Days

Wednesday
Chance of a Thunderstorm
93°F / 73°F
Wind: 5 NNW
Humidity: 56

Thursday
Chance of a Thunderstorm
93°F / 71°F
Wind: 5 WNW
Humidity: 62

Friday
Thunderstorm
90°F / 71°F
Wind: 7 NW
Humidity: 70
Close
@C - CORN - CBOT
Month High Low Last Chg
Sep '16 332'4 332'0 332'4 0'0
Dec '16 339'6 338'6 339'4 0'0
Mar '17 349'0 348'2 349'0 0'0
May '17 354'0 354'0 354'0 -0'4
Jul '17 359'4 359'0 359'4 0'0
Sep '17 363'6 363'6 363'6 0'2
@S - SOYBEANS - CBOT
Month High Low Last Chg
Aug '16 999'0 993'0 999'0 5'4
Sep '16 990'0 984'6 990'0 5'0
Nov '16 980'0 972'4 979'4 5'6
Jan '17 980'6 973'4 980'4 6'0
Mar '17 970'0 964'0 970'0 6'6
May '17 967'6 959'0 967'6 8'6
Jul '17 967'2 964'2 967'2 7'0
@K - HARD RED WINTER WHEAT - KCBT
Month High Low Last Chg
Sep '16 413'6 412'0 412'0 0'0
Dec '16 440'0 438'6 438'6 0'2
Mar '17 456'0 456'0 456'0 0'4
May '17 476'4 465'4 466'4 -11'0
@L - LIVE CATTLE - CME
Month High Low Last Chg
Aug '16 113.975 112.450 113.875 0.925
Oct '16 112.675 111.025 112.575 1.500
@C - COTTON #2 - ICEFU
Month High Low Last Chg
Oct '16
Dec '16 74.13 73.95 74.10 0.15
Mar '17 74.31 74.25 74.27 -0.10
DTN Click here for info on Exchange delays.
Local
?Is your Plant Engine Running at Maximum Efficiency?? At Aurora ...
?Is your Plant Engine Running at Maximum Efficiency?? At Aurora Cooperative, our Real Farm Research Team is gaining new insights every day on how to make every plant / field run efficiently to maximize your return on investment. To learn more come check us out at one of our RFR sites tours. Ashton/Dannebrog 7/27/2016 Doniphan, NE 7/28/2016 Minden, NE 8/2/2016 Fairbury, NE 8/3/2016 Traer, IA 8/25/2016 York, NE 8/9/2016 Byron, NE 8/10/2016 Aurora, NE 8/11/2016 Wray, CO 8/16/2016 Grant, NE 8/17/2016 Grand Island 8/18/2016>
National
Continued concern with herbicide resistance weeds
Waterhemp in an Iowa soybean field (photo courtesy Iowa State University) Herbicide-resistant weeds continue to be a growing concern across the Midwest. Iowa State University Extension crops specialist Joel DeJong says part of the problem is a lack of new weed-killing chemistries. He says the last new family of herbicides was introduced in the 1980?s. ?It?s kind of scary because we?ve had lots of new products on the market, but they?re all from the same families that already existed,? DeJong says. ?Because of that, we kind of keep going back to the well and keep using the same ones?and if one works, we use it really hard.? DeJong says glyphosate is a good example. ?Glyphosate?Roundup?worked extremely well. And it still works extremely well on most weeds,? he says. ?However, there is one or two families of weeds in the state of Iowa that really have found a way to move around how glyphosate works?and so they?re becoming more resistant to it. Waterhemp is probably our biggest problem and that?s the one that most farmers have concerns about.? DeJong says even if crop protection companies were to develop a new line of herbicides, it could be several years before they hit the marketplace. ?If one got discovered today, to pass through all the hoops and everything else to make sure it?s safe to the environment and to people and to animals, it would take at least a decade before that would become available to the market. So right now we?ve got to figure out how we?re using the tools we?ve got?how do we use them better and how do we reduce the risk of maybe developing more resistance in our weeds.? DeJong was one of the presenters at Thursday?s ISU ?Weeds Week? seminar in Cherokee, Iowa. The last Weeds Week meeting takes place Friday in Boone. Dennis Morrice, KLEM-Le Mars, Iowa, contributed to this story. The post Continued concern with herbicide resistance weeds appeared first on Brownfield Ag News.      
Facebook
?Is your Plant Engine Running at Maximum Efficiency?? At Aurora ...
?Is your Plant Engine Running at Maximum Efficiency?? At Aurora Cooperative, our Real Farm Research Team is gaining new insights every day on how to make every plant / field run efficiently to maximize your return on investment. To learn more come check us out at one of our RFR sites tours. Ashton/Dannebrog 7/27/2016 Doniphan, NE 7/28/2016 Minden, NE 8/2/2016 Fairbury, NE 8/3/2016 Traer, IA 8/25/2016 York, NE 8/9/2016 Byron, NE 8/10/2016 Aurora, NE 8/11/2016 Wray, CO 8/16/2016 Grant, NE 8/17/2016 Grand Island 8/18/2016>
Starting to think about your fall needs? We are! Come talk to us on ...
Starting to think about your fall needs? We are! Come talk to us on how you can take advantage of a special promotion to help you keep everything running smoothly this fall.>
Aurora Cooperative at the Perkins Co Fair parade!
Aurora Cooperative at the Perkins Co Fair parade!>
The Aurora Cooperative is in the middle of our whirlwind county fair ...
The Aurora Cooperative is in the middle of our whirlwind county fair tour! We have made it to Thayer, Adams, Clay, Fillmore, Jefferson, Webster, Hall, Jewell Co Kansas, Clay, Nuckolls and Franklin Counties!! It has been great to meet so many hard working kids in 4H and FFA!>
The Veloz Technology received two global awards from Agrow Awards ...
The Veloz Technology received two global awards from Agrow Awards Event in 2011. We were awarded ?Best Formulation Innovation? and ?Best Industry Collaboration?. The winners of the Agrow Awards were selected by a panel of 10 judges whose backgrounds include global regulatory experts, professors of international universities, research chemists, chairmen and presidents of multinational agriculture chemical companies as well as the general secretary of China Crop Protection Industry Association.>
Western bean egg masses are starting to show up and are you ...
Western bean egg masses are starting to show up and are you protected? Be on the lookout for these damaging insects in your field! Checkout this article for more information! http://ow.ly/cVwh302dG0u>
Western bean egg masses are starting to show up and are you ...
Western bean egg masses are starting to show up and are you protected? #Grow16 #CropStress>
We were just at the Franklin & Clay County Fairs! Be sure to come ...
We were just at the Franklin & Clay County Fairs! Be sure to come check us out at your next fair!>
Have you ordered your fungicide yet? Contact your Aurora Agronomist ...
Have you ordered your fungicide yet? Contact your Aurora Agronomist and ask about Frenzy Attack and Absolute Max!>
The marketplace guesses for todays USDA report was very close to ...
The marketplace guesses for todays USDA report was very close to actual estimates. Corn futures are posting small gains at mid-day as uncertain weather forecasts continue to circulate. After some choppy trade, soybean futures have firmed to near the day?s high.>
There are more intruders making their way into your fields! If you ...
There are more intruders making their way into your fields! If you see these or any others, contact your Aurora Agronomy Representative immediately!>
Check out these Sizzling Summer Savings from the Aurora Cooperative ...
Check out these Sizzling Summer Savings from the Aurora Cooperative Service Center!!>
Have a Happy and Safe 4th of July! We thank those who protect our ...
Have a Happy and Safe 4th of July! We thank those who protect our freedom and the American Farmers!>
>
Don?t let Japanese Beetles destroy your soybean crop! If you see ...
Don?t let Japanese Beetles destroy your soybean crop! If you see these little intruders, call your Aurora Agronomy representative immediately!>
Local
?Is your Plant Engine Running at Maximum Efficiency?? At Aurora ...
?Is your Plant Engine Running at Maximum Efficiency?? At Aurora Cooperative, our Real Farm Research Team is gaining new insights every day on how to make every plant / field run efficiently to maximize your return on investment. To learn more come check us out at one of our RFR sites tours. Ashton/Dannebrog 7/27/2016 Doniphan, NE 7/28/2016 Minden, NE 8/2/2016 Fairbury, NE 8/3/2016 Traer, IA 8/25/2016 York, NE 8/9/2016 Byron, NE 8/10/2016 Aurora, NE 8/11/2016 Wray, CO 8/16/2016 Grant, NE 8/17/2016 Grand Island 8/18/2016>
Tumbling U.S. Wheat Acres
Strong wheat yields across the U.S. are proving to be burdensome on wheat markets already struggling to deal with large U.S and global inventories. In many areas producers are facing the lowest cash prices they have seen in years. These weak prices have left wheat production in the U.S. with a bleak economic outlook. In many areas of the Great Plains cash bids are hovering near, and have sometimes below, the $3.00 per bushel barrier. (Here are some – rather depressing – Kansas andNebraska bids). It has gotten so bad that in some areas of the country cash wheat prices have reached levels that trigger the ability to collect payments from the USDA’s Loan Deficiency Program (LDP) (something few people seriously contemplated when the last farm bill was written). The situation in the wheat market is symptomatic of many of the issues facing grain producers and we believe that it likely has many broader implications for the entire grain sector. So over the next few months we are going to feature several posts evaluating the situation in wheat production. Internally we’ve been describing it as our “wheat’s woes” analysis. This week’s posts takes a look at trends in U.S. wheat acres. The 35 Year Decline While wheat prices have taken a sour-turn recently, wheat acres have been in a downward trend for decades. Over the past 35 years (1981 to 2016) wheat acres have contracted from more than 88 million acres to fewer than 51 million acres (Figure 1), a decline of more than 27 million acres. While the decline is quite large, it’s important to consider the rates of decline. Over the 35 years, a trend-line through the data reveals that wheat acres contracted at a rate of 816,000 acres per year (not shown). For context, this rate is nearly equal to losing a Kansas-worth of wheat acres every decade (Kansas planted 8.5 million acres of wheat in 2016). While 816,000 fewer acres each year seems very large, it’s important to keep that in perspective. The decline in acres is also equal to an annualized rate of change of -1.6%. While a 1.6% annual decline is small, small changes over a long period of time become very large. Especially when sustained over 35 years. A Long-Run View Looking back further in the data it’s easy to see that U.S. wheat is no stranger to drastic changes in acres (figure 2). Over the past 97 years, wheat acres have experienced several periods of large increases and decreases. Prior to the record-high sowings of 1981 (88.3 million acres), wheat acres hit their lowest levels in 1970 at 48.7 million acres. A key element of the previous farm economic boom (the 1970s) was strong wheat exports fueling a rapid expansion of U.S. wheat acres. Wheat acres also contracted sharply during World War II (80.8 million acres in 1937 to 53.0 million in 1942) to later surge again by 1953 (78.9 million). In short, wheat has been susceptible to wild swings in acres. Most of the changes happened in short periods of time. The major difference with the current period of acreage decline is that the downward trend has been the relatively slower, spanning multiple decades. Wrapping it Up Acres of U.S. wheat have steadily declined over the last 35 years. This trend lower has been the result of small but consistent declines over several years. Looking over nearly 100 years of data, it’s clear that wheat is no stranger to large changes in planted acres . If anything, the pace of change occurring since 1981 has been slow relative to previous changes. As we will cover in upcoming posts, attention will be on wheat acres planted in the upcoming Fall and Spring. The markets will closely monitor this as transitions away from wheat will likely result in addition acres of corn and sorghum. Stay tuned. Source: David Widmar, Agricultural Economic Insights
Starting to think about your fall needs? We are! Come talk to us on ...
Starting to think about your fall needs? We are! Come talk to us on how you can take advantage of a special promotion to help you keep everything running smoothly this fall.>
Cattle Markets Can Recover
Lower cattle prices have been the story this spring and summer. Beef supply has been large due to heavy placements of heavy calves and the beginning of more females coming to market as herd expansion may be slowing. Retail beef prices have been slow to come down and this has limited consumer purchases of beef in relation to abundant pork and poultry supplies. Finished cattle prices have been on the skids since mid-March when prices reached near $140 per hundredweight. By last week, prices had fallen to around $115. Noticing the bearish theme in the cash market, the futures market has suggested prices will drop another $5 by the end of this year and proceed downward to near $100 by next summer. There are plenty of reasons why prices have fallen, the biggest being a large number of cattle coming out of feedlots in recent months. That story goes back even further to abundant grass which encouraged cow-calf operations and backgrounders to add more weight to calves before they entered the feedlot. As a result, there has been a shift to heavier weight placements. In the first half of this year, placements weighing 800 pounds and more represented a record 40 percent of all placements, compared to a longer-term average around 27 percent. Rapid placements of heavy calves meant that marketings were going to rise sharply. Marketings out of feedlots were up five percent in May and then up a sharp ten percent in June. Contributing to higher recent marketings has been a shift to lower slaughter weights since May which has served to "pull cattle forward." This shift to lighter weights is probably related to the falling finished cattle prices and the desire of feedlot managers to get cattle to market before prices dropped even more. Because of these heavy marketings, beef production was up five percent in May and ten percent in June compared to the same month in the previous year. The rapid marketings in recent months has reduced the total number on feed to just one percent higher than year-ago according to USDA. This should help ease the burdensome volume of cattle and encourage upward price movement. There are early signs that the expansion phase of this cattle cycle could be in the process of slowing. Lower finished cattle prices and extremely weak futures prices may be causing cattle producers to re-think any additional expansion plans. The calf prices implied by $100 finished cattle is simply not profitable for most cow-calf operations. If producers slow the rate of expansion, then this means more females move to market providing added beef supply pressures to already declining cattle prices. The signs of slowing expansion are in the rate of increased female slaughter. In June, the number of heifers processed was up relative to year previous levels for the first time in several years. In addition, the number of beef cows processed in both May and June was up about 18 percent. For June, total females (heifers and all cows) processed were up 7 percent compared to year earlier numbers. The total number of females in the processing mix remains low, so it is still too early to say this expansion phase has come to an end. However, these signs of higher numbers of females in the processing mix may be the first clues of what is to come. Retail beef prices have been slow to fall as much as needed to encourage consumers to buy the added beef supplies. In June, USDA reported the composite retail beef price was $6.20 per pound. This compares to a record high price of $6.41 per pound in May of 2015. Thus, recent retail prices were just three percent lower than the record high. In contrast, June retail pork prices were down 11 percent from their high. Farm level prices normally drop quickly, but retail prices are much slower to decline. This means the current margin between the farm price and the retail price is at a record wide level. Packer margins are likely at record high levels as well. As retail prices adjust downward over time, consumers will have more price incentives to buy beef and this could actually help strengthen farm level prices. With the number of cattle on feed only up one percent on July 1, there should be renewed hope for recovery in cattle prices. The fact that marketing weights have come down is also an encouragement that feedlot managers are more current in their marketings. In addition, over coming months, retail beef prices should also come down which will serve to narrow packer margins, but improve farm prices. Prices of finished cattle are expected to be in the mid-to-higher teens in the third quarter then move upward to the high teens to low $120's this fall. Recent live cattle futures prices have been extremely depressed, sending signals of much lower cash prices next year. While prices are expected to be lower next year, they may not be as low as suggested by futures. Still, cow calf managers will want to continue to be cautious about further expansion of the brood cowherd. Source: Chris Hurt, Farmdocdaily
Ag's Invasive Species Problem Likely to Get Worse Before Better
Agriculture must take action now to manage the possible onslaught of new organisms, new insects and new diseases that is expected to escalate. “One thing that is very clear is our world today is getting smaller at least figuratively,” said Tim Brenneman, a professor of plant pathology at the University of Georgia in Tifton, Ga., in an address to the annual meeting of the American Peanut Research and Education Society in Clearwater, Fla., July 14. “The world is shrinking. We have to do business and science in the global arena. We must try to prevent the introduction of new pathogens, new weeds, new insects, etc.,” Brenneman said. “We need strong research and Extension programs in place to identify and address potential new risks as they arrive.” Brenneman cited the U.S. Department of Interior 2014 Invasive Species Action Plan which states that invasive species pose one of the greatest threats to the ecological, economic and cultural integrity of U.S. landscapes. The action plan states that invasive species are expected to escalate. In his comments, Brenneman discussed the success the peanut industry has had in battling tomato spot wilt virus which still presents great challenges. He said the virus almost put the Georgia peanut industry out of business in the mid-1990s. “We did get a handle on it. The tomato spotted wilt index was developed and implemented. The price we paid was to completely change the way we grow peanuts: planting dates, cultivars, insecticides, row patterns, seed spacing, etc.,” Brenneman said. “One of the prices we paid that I think we overlooked is the price we paid in our breeding programs. There was a lot of promising germplasm that breeders essentially got rid of. If it didn’t have spotted wilt resistance, we didn’t use it anymore.” Brenneman said the industry needs to be on the lookout for tomato spotted wilt virus due to a high level of thrips and a higher level of spotted wilt found in test plots compared to recent years. “We are still waiting to see how this story is going to pan out,” he said.  Source: John Hart, Southeast Farm Press
Bulk of Crops Remain in Excellent, Good Condition
U.S. corn and soybean crops didn't suffer much from last week's high heat and humidity. As of Sunday, 79% of corn is silking, compared to the five year average of 70%, and 13% is at the dough making stage, matching the normal pace. 76% of corn is in good to excellent condition, unchanged on the week. 76% of soybeans are blooming, compared to 66% on average, and 35% are setting pods, compared to 26% typically this time of year. 71% of soybeans are called good to excellent, steady with a week ago. 83% of winter wheat is harvested, compared to 79% on average, and 68% of spring wheat is rated good to excellent, down 1% from last week. 53% of U.S. pastures and rangelands are in good to excellent condition, 3% less than a week ago. Source: AgriMarketing
Drone Prototype Successfully Used for Prescribed Burns
Ranchers who use prescribed burns to control invasive plant species on their pastures could soon receive some help from above. Researchers at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln have developed a prototype unmanned aerial vehicle — commonly called a drone — capable of safely igniting prescribed burns. Developed at UNL’s Nebraska Intelligent Mobile Unmanned Systems (NIMBUS) lab, the six-rotor AscTec “micro-drone” is only about 1 square foot in size, capable of fitting into a backpack. The drone has various layers of sensors, systems and software which enable an operator to very precisely and safely ignite a prescribed burn, according to Sebastian Elbaum, professor of computer science and engineering at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. Elbaum and Carrick Detweiler, assistant professor of computer science and engineering, designed the prototype for the drone. HOW IT WORKS The drone carries small balls that contain a chemical powder. Just before dropping the ball, the drone injects a second chemical into the ball and it bursts into flames within 60 seconds. The drone is capable of dropping the fireballs every few seconds, Elbaum said. The UNL team has four prototypes of the drone, each carrying different sensors, a different number of fireballs and even different types of balls. While the current vehicles carry anywhere between 15 and 75 balls, the next prototype may be able to carry twice as many. As the balls ignite, fire begins to emerge. Since the drone is a robot of sorts, users can plan very precisely where they want the fireballs to land. “You can program where they are going to fall, or you can specify patterns where you want them to fall every ‘x’ number of feet over an area,” Elbaum said. “You can actually tell them to go in a line or circle. You can specify all kinds of fire patterns that would be hard to do with a person.” Another benefit of the drones is that they can fly very low, so the balls are not blown away by wind gusts. The current prototypes are capable of flying in winds up to 15 miles per hour, but with prescribed fires manned by people, the winds are usually only up to 10 mph in Nebraska. Currently, most people doing prescribed fires in small- and medium-sized areas are using tools such as torches, which haven’t changed in the last 20 to 30 years, he said. Cars and all-terrain vehicles are also commonly used, which work well when there are roads or paths to navigate, but become more dangerous in rugged terrain such as ravines or canyons. “That’s where we think these micro-drones can come in. They can actually reach hard areas and cover them fast,” Elbaum said. “They can get to a target location and initiate fires in a very controlled and targeted manner.” SUCCESSFUL TESTS Earlier this spring, the NIMBUS team tested their drones to ignite a prescribed burn of more than 2,000 acres of private land in a loess canyon area near Gothenburg, Nebraska, in the south-central area of the state. The goal of the burn was to target the red cedars that are considered an invasive species and are a problem because they consume a lot of water and take up a lot of pasture space, Elbaum said. Then, in April, the NIMBUS team used the drone to burn 26 acres of restored tallgrass prairie at the Homestead National Monument of America near Beatrice, Nebraska, where a third of the prairie grass is burned every year for soil health and to control invasive species. “It was a great test,” Elbaum said. “We were able to work with firefighters, learn about how the technology performed, learn what the firefighters liked and didn’t like, which helped us learn what aspects of the technology were limiting. Other collaborators in the Homestead prescribed burn included the National Park Service’s Midwest Region Fire and Aviation Program, the Service’s national-level Branch of Aviation; and the Department of the Interior’s Office of Aviation Services. The Federal Aviation Administration gave permission for the test after the device was reviewed and approved by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, which oversees air transportation research as well as space research. FUTURE APPLICATIONS After analyzing data from the Homestead burn, Elbaum said one of the interesting things the team learned was fire vectors and temperature information. This will help them to assign paths that are safer to navigate and gave them a better idea of the efficiency of the vehicle and the success rates of the initiated fires. Since the tests, the team has been contacted by other parks interested in doing prescribed burns with drones, as well as ranchers in Nebraska and Kansas, and people in Michigan, Georgia and Arkansas, to name a few. The drones could also be used to combat wildfires. The NIMBUS team is talking to the Department of the Interior and private organizations to try to work with them in a more systematic way for conducting trials and to help them learn how to develop the technology to better match current needs, Elbaum said. He summed up the team mission in three goals: to push the technology as far as possible to solve large problems, to help students become educated in the design and use of complex systems, and to perform outreach to help people doing this type of activity in the field. REGULATIONS AND TRAINING Firemen or others using the drones will need to be trained, though the main goal of the team at UNL is to minimize the amount of training that is needed by programming the vehicle to operate on autopilot most of the time. The Federal Aviation Administration requires even small drones to be registered, but since the NIMBUS engineers are not recreational users and are not doing things with drones that recreational users do, they needed a special Certificate of Authorization from the FAA to conduct their tests. Elbaum said the laws for drone registration and usage are changing rapidly and may become more streamlined and straightforward in the future. Other members of the NIMBUS team who helped develop the drone were Craig Allen, UNL professor and expert on invasive species management and sustainability; Dirac Twidwell, UNL rangeland expert who studies prescribed burns; Brittany Duncan, assistant professor of computer science and engineering; and students James Higgins, Evan Beachly, Christian Laney and Rebecca Horzewski. Videos about the NIMBUS lab and its drone research are available here and here Source: Cheryl Anderson, DTN
Your Farm's Intellectual Property May Be Worth More than You Think
An interview with Andrew Moreton, Manager at Moreton Partnership, Charleston, MO Tell us a bit about yourself, your background, and your farm. I grew up on our family farm in Charleston, Missouri. Moreton Partnership farms 5,000 acres of corn, wheat, and soybeans along the Mississippi River in Southeast Missouri. My great-grandfather Carleton Moreton started farming in 1937, and I am the fourth generation to farm. Our operation consists of seven full-time operators along with my grandfather, dad, and myself. I worked on the farm growing up, then attended college at Southern Methodist University (SMU) in Dallas, Texas. While in college, I interned for a family friend who was a patent attorney and decided that it was an interesting field. Upon law school graduation, I worked for Baker & McKenzie for six years, specializing in patent prosecution and litigation. Then I moved back home to work on our family business, and have been farming full-time since. How do you define a farm's intellectual property (IP)? A farm’s intellectual property is, broadly speaking, any intangible asset that the farm owns. While land, equipment, buildings, and the commodities grown on the farm are tangible assets that you can see and touch, the business processes, best methods, and branding would be intangible IP that the farm owns. Up to now, I haven’t seen farms really placing much value on their IP assets because they may not have thought there was any IP to protect. But I think we will see a change in the next 5-10 years with the next generation of farmers. Why do you think a farm's business IP hasn't been formally defined and valued yet? A farm’s intellectual property is much more difficult to define, and therefore value, than other IP in the agricultural industry. For example, equipment manufacturers can protect their new equipment designs and inventions with patents. Seed companies can protect newly developed plant varieties with plant patents. And all of these companies can protect their brands (names, logos, slogans, colors, etc.) with trademark. Each of these protections is an exclusive right granted by the government that allows the IP owner to exclude others. But a farm’s primary business is not designing new equipment or writing software code, or even differentiating its grains from those of its neighbors—it is growing and selling plants that are inherently similar and by definition, commodities. Therefore, in a traditional IP sense, there hasn’t been a reason for a farm to protect its IP until very recently. Big data has changed that. All of the data that is collected over the course of a growing season is an intangible asset that is owned and controlled by someone. Forward-thinking farmers will want to ensure that any data collected on their farm is the farmer’s exclusive data and IP. What systems do you currently use to create and protect your farm’s IP? There are two main areas of IP that I have identified in my short time on the farm. First, on the business side, and since I started working on the farm, we have become Granular users. With Granular, we are able to keep track of all of our business practices in one place, and use that information to make decisions based on data and not just intuition. On the precision farming and agronomy side, we are working to improve our collection of data for each field. We want to store that data in a way that we can later find it and then use it to analyze what we could improve on each field, and more specifically, what we could improve on particular parts of each field. Unlike the business side where we are seeing immediate value, this agronomy side may take several growing cycles before we can really see results, but we know that we need to start the process now. How would you value or quantify it? The key to protecting, and later valuing, our farm’s IP is ensuring that we have exclusive ownership of our data. Be careful signing any terms and conditions agreements and if you think the agreement is one-sided, it probably is. Ask questions if you do not understand who owns the data. It is important that the farm owns the data that comes from it. A farmer may decide to share this data outside of the farm, for example with crop consultants, but farmers need to make sure that they maintain exclusive ownership to it. Without that exclusivity, the information becomes much less valuable. How will farmers benefit from valuing and protecting their IP? We have been farming in this same area for almost 80 years and the evolution of how information is stored will make IP rights more important in the future. My great-grandfather and then grandfather’s generation kept data on paper records, if at all. My dad’s generation moved to Excel spreadsheets, but without proper formatting, it can be difficult and frustrating to make year-to-year decisions based exclusively on Excel. And those spreadsheets may only be stored on one computer or could be lost when changing computers. Now with cloud computing, we are able to more easily collect, record, access, and analyze data from any computer, smartphone, or tablet. This is beneficial to farmers who may share decision-making responsibility or who may not be able to see each field on a daily basis. In the near future, farmers are going to have very large amounts of data generated from their farms, and I believe that there are going to be several opportunities to monetize this data—but only if it is data exclusively owned and controlled by the farmers. They will be able to selectively sell their data to equipment manufacturers, seed and chemical companies, software data aggregators, and marketing companies, for the right price. However, right now, there are three main ways that I think farmers can benefit from their IP already: Having access to this data allows farmers to become more efficient and profitable year after year Farmers that are able to utilize data will be able to share information with landlords or potential landlords in order to differentiate themselves from other farmers that may be interested in renting the land. If a landowner is looking to sell or rent their land, they may be able to negotiate more favorable terms by selling this data to the buyer or tenant. As the field develops, there may be more and more opportunities that may not be readily apparent now. Andrew Moreton is a manager at Moreton Partnership in Charleston, Missouri. He is a licensed attorney in Texas and pending in Missouri. Source: Corn + Soybean Digest
Palmer Amaranth on the Move
Palmer amaranth was first identified in Iowa in 2013. Currently, we know it is established in five Iowa counties, but we suspect it is more widespread than this (Fig. 1). This past weekend we were made aware of a new infestation of Palmer amaranth in Fremont County, distant from the initial infestation in this county. In addition, a suspicious looking Amaranthus species was found in Madison County – the owner is allowing a few plants to develop seedheads in order to make a positive identification. A mantra of invasive plant management is ‘Early Detection and Prevention.’ The objective is to identify new infestations as they get started and eradicate the pest before a permanent seed bank is established. In order for this tactic to be effective, everyone involved in Iowa crop production (farmers, industry, landowners, etc.) must learn how to identify Palmer amaranth, and then closely monitor fields and other disturbed habitats for the presence of this new threat. The task of identifying new Palmer infestations is complicated by its close resemblance to waterhemp. Because of waterhemps’ omnipresence in crop fields across Iowa, it is easy to ‘tune out’ when encountering another Amaranthus infested field. Distinguishing waterhemp from Palmer amaranth in the vegetative stage is difficult, this is why it is so important to monitor fields now when these species are entering the reproductive phase. From a distance, Palmer amaranth can often be differentiated from waterhemp due to the presence of long (> 12 inches) terminal branches on inflorescences. The inflorescences of Palmer are often more than 3/4 inch in diameter, whereas waterhemp typically has thin (1/4 inch) branches. These two species are dioecious, meaning male and female flowers grow on separate plants. Occasionally, male waterhemp will produce long, thick terminal inflorescences. The most reliable trait for differentiating Palmer amaranth and waterhemp is the bracts of female plants. The bracts on Palmer amaranth are up to 1/4 inch in length and extend beyond the other flower parts, giving the seedhead a ‘spiky’ appearance (Fig. 3). These bracts become sharp as they mature, making the seedheads painful to the touch. The bracts on waterhemp do not extend beyond the length of the other parts of the flowers (tepals, seed capsule). Why worry about Palmer amaranth when we are already in the ‘fight of our lives’ with its close relative waterhemp? While crops can tolerate moderate infestations of waterhemp without suffering large yield losses, a similar infestation of Palmer amaranth can be devastating to yields. This is why ‘Early Detection and Prevention’ is so important. Source: Bob Hartzler and Meaghan Anderson, Iowa State University Extension
Rice Leaf Blast Confirmed in Mississippi
Once again, leaf blast has been observed in several susceptible varieties across the Delta (e.g., Rex, CL163, and CL151). The majority of the fields observed to contain leaf blast, contained blast-infected rice along edges and in areas of the field where low or no floodwater was present. Diagnosing leaf blast at the field level has been complicated this season. Numerous disorders produce similar lesions on rice leaves. Small, brown, oval to oblong lesions are common on rice leaves, especially if a herbicide has drifted or injured leaf material. However, lesions that tend to be diamond-shaped, wider in the middle than the ends and have a brown to maroon colored lesion with a gray to tan center are the more typical blast-type lesions. At present, roundish lesions with a faint brown to maroon halo around the lesion are not believed to be the result of leaf blast infection. These round lesions have been moist chambered during 2016 and were not observed to contain fungal material as a result of blast infection. Fungicide applications to manage the leaf blast phase are generally not considered to be economically beneficial. However, fungicide application timing may dictate whether or not an application is made at a growth stage to manage sheath blight that could also provide some benefit on leaf blast. Managing the potential development of neck blast ismore important than attempting to manage leaf blast. However, statements regarding that may create some confusion since in some rare cases leaf blast can produce inoculum that results in neck blast. Protecting rice yield is important if and when the neck blast phase of the disease occurs. When attempting to manage leaf blast, one important cultural practice to implement as a means of reducing overall blast occurrence and severity is monitoring flood depth. Field area where floodwater is shallower than four inches can result in increasing concentrations of leaf blast. Be mindful that fungicide application rate is important for disease management. Reducing the rates of pre-mix fungicide products can reduce either one or both active ingredient components of the product. The three fungicides outlined in the table below all contain a strobilurin (quinone outside inhibitor; QoI) and a triazole (demethylation inhibitor; DMI). The two active ingredients provide both curative and preventive with their respective mode of action. Application rate differs between the products due to the percent active ingredient contained in the product. Several questions have also been posed regarding fungicide residual activity. The residual activity expected from almost any foliar fungicide application of a product that contains a strobilurin and triazole would be on the order of 21 days. But, be mindful that in some cases it may take up to seven days before the activity from a fungicide application is observed to prevent the increase of blast or any other fungal disease for that matter. Source: Tom Allen, Mississippi State University Extension
Aurora Cooperative at the Perkins Co Fair parade!
Aurora Cooperative at the Perkins Co Fair parade!>
The Aurora Cooperative is in the middle of our whirlwind county fair ...
The Aurora Cooperative is in the middle of our whirlwind county fair tour! We have made it to Thayer, Adams, Clay, Fillmore, Jefferson, Webster, Hall, Jewell Co Kansas, Clay, Nuckolls and Franklin Counties!! It has been great to meet so many hard working kids in 4H and FFA!>
New Drone Regulations: What Does It All Mean?
On June 21, 2016, the Federal Aviation Administration released the much anticipated new Unmanned Aerial Systems (UAS) or drone regulations, also referred to as Part 107. These rules go in effect Aug. 29, 2016, and cover a broad spectrum of commercial uses for drones weighing less than 55 pounds (take?off weight). One of the most significant changes is that commercial operations that fit within the framework of Part 107 will no longer require Federal Aviation Administration approval by exemption, which has typically taken months to secure. Previously, commercial operators needed a “Section 333 exemption,” which allowed an operator with a Federal Aviation Administration-approved certificate of authorization to fly in the National Airspace. Needless to say, these certification rules restricted and discouraged the potential use of drones for agriculture and many other commercial purposes. The new Part 107 regulations seek to ease some of these restrictions by establishing a new certified “Remote Pilot in Command” (R-PIC) position and a remote pilot certification process. The person operating the small UAS must either hold a remote pilot airman certificate with a small UAS rating or be under the direct supervision of a person who does hold a remote pilot airman certificate. To qualify for a remote pilot certificate, you will have to be at least 16 years old and pass an initial in-person aeronautical knowledge test at a Federal Aviation Administration?approved testing center. If you already have a Part 61 pilot certificate other than a student pilot certificate, then the requirements are to complete a flight review within the previous 24 months and complete a small UAS online training course provided by the Federal Aviation Administration. Before the certificate is issued, you will be vetted by the Transportation Security Administration for background checks. The R-PIC must conduct a preflight check of the small UAS to ensure it is in a condition to operate safely. The manned private pilot Federal Aviation Administration knowledge test is no longer required. If you already have a Section 333 exemption, you can continue to operate the UAS under the exemption until it expires. After that, you may choose to operate your UAS under the Part 107 rules by obtaining a remote pilot certificate. The aircraft should remain within the visual line of sight of the R-PIC and only daylight operations are permitted. So delivery of Christmas gifts or nocturnal activities by drones will still be prohibited. The maximum altitude is 400 feet above ground level. If higher than 400 feet above ground level, then remain within 400 feet of a structure. This will permit drones to inspect tall buildings and storage structures. Some of these restrictions mentioned above are waivable if the operator demonstrates that the operation can be safely conducted under the terms of a waiver. Members of the public will be able to take the Federal Aviation Administration aeronautical knowledge test at testing centers starting Aug. 29, 2016. A cost of $150 for the knowledge test is anticipated. Following the test, you will have to complete the Federal Aviation Administration Airman Certificate Application Form and apply for the remote pilot certificate. If you fail the test, you can retake the test after 14 days. The new Part 107 regulations have been derived by essentially separating the small UAS from the manned aircraft rules. It is now possible to operate a UAS without a Federal Aviation Administration airworthiness certificate, a pilot license or section 333 exemptions. With the expanding market potential, the drone industry will now attract substantial new private investments. That in effect will spur new innovations, critical scientific research and development and local job growth. If you feel the Federal Aviation Administration Part 107 regulations did not go far enough, the advice is to stay patient. This is the first step in a series of changes and more operational concepts will be approved with time. Agriculture and food production would be significant benefactors in drone applications. Other commercial uses pertain to security, defense, public safety, communication and environmental and transportation services. Industry experts estimate the recent rule changes will help generate more than $82 billion for the U.S. economy and create more than 100,000 jobs over the next 10 years. For a summary of information, read the Federal Aviation Administration’s “Summary of Small Unmanned Aircraft Rule (Part 107).” For more information about the UAS use in agriculture and research, visit UAS in Agriculture Learning Network and read their blog post, “A Summary of FAA Part 107 rules by the UAS in Agriculture Learning Network.” I wish to thank Victor Villegas of Oregon State University Extension and members of the eXtension Community of Practice on UAS for their input into this article. Source: George Silva, Michigan State University Extension
Drought Map Lighting Up
This week’s USDM period (ending on July 19) was characterized by typical hit and miss summer-time shower activity across the country, punctuated by extreme heat in the Southern Plains and the Northeast. The heaviest rains fell in southern Minnesota, southwest Iowa, much of Indiana and eastern Illinois, western Kentucky, eastern North Carolina, along the Gulf Coast and Florida. Below normal precipitation was observed in eastern Texas, northern Wisconsin, Pennsylvania and New England.A strong ridge over the southern Plains contributed to abnormally warm temperatures in New Mexico and Texas during the period. Daily maximum temperatures soared well into the triple digits, as much as 10 degrees F above normal in the area. While not as intense, temperatures 6-8 degrees F above normal were observed in the Northeast. Cooler-than-normal temperatures encapsulated much of the Northwest and High Plains. View Drought Monitor here. SOUTHEAST Much of the Southeast experienced scattered rain showers this past USDM week. Some areas were winners while others were losers. Eastern North Carolina, parts of southwest and eastern South Carolina, the Georgia/Florida border, west central Alabama, southern Mississippi and southeastern Louisiana all experienced above normal precipitation for the 7-day period. The majority of other locations were at or below normal in terms of precipitation. Average daytime temperatures for the region were generally above normal. The most intense heat was focused in western South Carolina where anomalies were as great as 4 degrees F above what is typically expected during the time period. Below average temperatures, associated with the cloud cover, were centered along the Gulf Coast. Warm temperatures, combined with a lack of precipitation, exasperated drought conditions in the region. Degradations were made across Georgia where precipitation was 50 percent of normal or less. An area of Extreme Drought was introduced in Cherokee County and stretching into Bartow County, Georgia where a stream flow gauge was measuring below 2 percent. D0 was stretched south and east covering the quickly deteriorating conditions. Reported impacts are mixed across Georgia but include: loss of corn crops, no grass to feed the cattle resulting in the use of hay to supplement, daily irrigation was not enough to supply plants what they need to survive. On a more positive note, one farmer reported they had a record watermelon harvest season.   MIDWEST Scattered showers affected the region from Minnesota eastward into Ohio. As much as 4 inches of precipitation was observed in southern Minnesota, eastern Illinois and western Indiana. Below average precipitation was reported in much of Missouri, Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. A large disparity in temperatures occurred from Minnesota and Iowa eastward to Ohio. Temperatures were 3-5 degrees cooler than normal in the west and 3-5 degrees warmer than normal in the east. Drought conditions improved in Iowa, but expanded in Ohio. It was reported by a farmer near Toledo that the lack of rain has slowed crop growth and he has relied on his pond for irrigation, but the pond’s water level was dropping rapidly. SOUTHERN PLAINS Much of the Southern Plains suffered as stifling heat baked the soils while precipitation was non-existent. Recent rains over the northern half of Oklahoma did warrant some improvement, but there was huge disparity in the south central and southeast part of the state. A single-category degradation was needed due to the 30-day precipitation departures. In Texas, temperatures were for the most part 4 degrees F above normal during the period. The most intense heat was in western Texas where anomalies were around 8 degrees F above normal. According to the USDA, 64 percent of topsoil moisture conditions are in the very short to short category. Deterioration occurred in the north, southwest and eastern parts of the state. HIGH PLAINS Precipitation in the High Plains this period ranged from greater than 300 percent in much of Montana to well below 10 percent along the North and South Dakota state border. Temperatures were muted across the region as anomalies were as much as 6 degrees below normal. Conditions continue to be drier than normal in the western South Dakota/eastern Wyoming area. Less than half of what is normally expected, in terms of precipitation, has fallen in that area during the last 30 days. 28-day stream flows are measuring in the 5-10 percent category and lower. All other indicators, including model based and satellite derived, are pointing to an extreme localized drought in the area. Ranchers and farmers in the area are experiencing no hay production at all and the cattle are already on winter pastures. There are not only water quantity issues, but also as the stock ponds and dams dry up, the water quality is suspect. Some ranchers have to haul water in every day. Wildfires are also a large concern. Based on all the indicators and impacts, all categories of drought were expanded in the area. WEST Precipitation was virtually non-existent in much of the Western region during the period. Light rain (0.5 inch) did fall in central Oregon and norther Washington. The southwest monsoon provided some relief to parts of Arizona, albeit only light amounts fell. Temperatures were cooler than normal in the Northwest, but slightly above normal for the desert southwest. The cooler than normal temperatures during July have helped suppress many new wildfires from emerging. This is the dry season for the West Coast, so changes to the drought monitor are very rare this time of year. ALASKA, HAWAII, PUERTO RICO In Alaska, percent of normal precipitation along the south and the entire panhandle is at 5 percent through the last 2 weeks. Meanwhile, temperatures are 8-10 degrees above normal during this 7-day USDM period. Wildfires are spreading across southern Alaska and streamflow’s are low in parts of the southwest and much of the southern panhandle. In the panhandle, fish and game authorities are starting to see some small fish die offs at the fisheries due to the high water temperatures while the low water levels are keeping the salmon in the ocean where the water is cooler. Due to these conditions, D0 was added to the entire panhandle. No changes were made in Hawaii and Puerto Rico this week. LOOKING AHEAD The next 3-7 days will bring above normal temperatures for much of the CONUS with the warmest anomalies forecasted for the Midwest and along the East Coast. Negative temperature anomalies will be confined to the Northwest. The High Plains, parts of New England, the Southeast, and Florida have the best chances of greater than normal precipitation. The CPC 6-10 day outlook calls for the greatest chances of above normal temperatures in California and the Great Basin, as well as the East Coast. The probability is high that below normal precipitation will occur in the Northwest, especially in Washington and Oregon, and the Midwest, while odds are in favor of above normal precipitation in the Southeast and East Coast. Source: Drought Monitor
Retail Fertilizer Trends: Good Time to Buy
Retail fertilizer prices tracked by DTN for the second week of July 2016 show prices are lower but not by significant amounts. However, DTN’s last five weekly surveys have all reported price reductions. In the latest retail survey, all eight of the major fertilizers dropped slightly in price compared to the previous month. DAP averaged $467/ton, MAP $496/ton, potash $358/ton and urea at $360/ton. 10-34-0 was at $538/ton, anhydrous $547/ton, UAN28 $266/ton and $306/ton. On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.39/lb.N, anhydrous $0.33/lb.N, UAN28 $0.48/lb.N and UAN32 $0.48/lb.N. In a July 11 blog post, David Widmar, agricultural economist at Purdue University, notes that except for fertilizer, variable crop production costs for corn have been slow to move. He previously examined if fixed costs were seeing adjustments. Widmar pointed out that the average total cost of corn production in 2015 was $677 per acre or about $13 per less than in 2014, using data from USDA. This represents a mere 2% decline in total costs. “Among variable costs, fertilizer was down $11 per acre in 2015,” Widmar wrote. “Overall, fertilizer was a significant driver in lower corn production costs in 2015 as it accounted for half of the total variable cost reduction.” Widmar points out that other variable costs, such as seed and ag chemicals, have changed very little in 2015. Both were within $1 per acre of 2014 levels. Data from Purdue corn budgets from 2014 to 2016 also document the fall in retail fertilizer costs. Fertilizer expense alone fell $21 per acre by 2016 and accounted for two thirds of the total variable expensive reductions over this period. The drop in fertilizer prices has been a critical component to adjustments to lower costs of production, he wrote. Looking ahead to the 2017 growing season, Widmar believes it is difficult to imagine that fertilizer prices will continue to provide such a large cost savings. “The combination of strong corn fertilizer demand in 2016 and stabilizing energy prices could set up the possibility of higher fertilizer prices in 2017,” he wrote. (You can read Widmar’s blog post here). DTN surveys show retail fertilizers remain significantly less expensive compared to a year earlier. All fertilizers are now double digits lower. UAN32 is 15% lower, both MAP and 10-34-0 are 16% lower while both DAP and UAN28 are 18% less expensive. Anhydrous is 21% lower, urea is 23% less expensive and potash is 27% less expensive compared to last year at this time. Source: AgFax
National
Continued concern with herbicide resistance weeds
Waterhemp in an Iowa soybean field (photo courtesy Iowa State University) Herbicide-resistant weeds continue to be a growing concern across the Midwest. Iowa State University Extension crops specialist Joel DeJong says part of the problem is a lack of new weed-killing chemistries. He says the last new family of herbicides was introduced in the 1980?s. ?It?s kind of scary because we?ve had lots of new products on the market, but they?re all from the same families that already existed,? DeJong says. ?Because of that, we kind of keep going back to the well and keep using the same ones?and if one works, we use it really hard.? DeJong says glyphosate is a good example. ?Glyphosate?Roundup?worked extremely well. And it still works extremely well on most weeds,? he says. ?However, there is one or two families of weeds in the state of Iowa that really have found a way to move around how glyphosate works?and so they?re becoming more resistant to it. Waterhemp is probably our biggest problem and that?s the one that most farmers have concerns about.? DeJong says even if crop protection companies were to develop a new line of herbicides, it could be several years before they hit the marketplace. ?If one got discovered today, to pass through all the hoops and everything else to make sure it?s safe to the environment and to people and to animals, it would take at least a decade before that would become available to the market. So right now we?ve got to figure out how we?re using the tools we?ve got?how do we use them better and how do we reduce the risk of maybe developing more resistance in our weeds.? DeJong was one of the presenters at Thursday?s ISU ?Weeds Week? seminar in Cherokee, Iowa. The last Weeds Week meeting takes place Friday in Boone. Dennis Morrice, KLEM-Le Mars, Iowa, contributed to this story. The post Continued concern with herbicide resistance weeds appeared first on Brownfield Ag News.      
Dicamba crop injury investigated in SE Missouri
The Missouri Department of Agriculture is investigating more than 100 complaints of herbicide damage from mostly dicamba, and in a few cases 2-4-D, in four southeast Missouri counties. The department?s Judy Grundler testified Thursday before the Missouri House Appropriations Committee on Agriculture, saying there are reports of damage to soybeans and other crops? ?We also see damage in peaches. We are hearing damage in peanuts, purple hull peas, watermelons, tomatoes ? and, also, some alfalfa has been reported.? The University of Missouri Extension will hold a forum on dicamba injury at the Delta Fisher Research Center in Portageville next Friday, July 29th. Last week, the Extension released a survey showing only 43-percent of Missouri pesticide applicators read the label each time they mix and spray. At the hearing, Southeast Missouri State Representative Don Rone of Portageville said will introduce legislation in January to increase penalties on those who illegally spray pesticides. ? ? ? ? The post Dicamba crop injury investigated in SE Missouri appeared first on Brownfield Ag News.      
Cattle buyer inquiry was light
Cattle buyer inquiry remained light on Wednesday afternoon with DTN reporting just a few bids in Kansas at 119.00, and Nebraska at 192.00. Asking prices are not well defined, but some producers have priced ready cattle around 125.00 in the South, and 200.00 to 205.00 in the North. Buying interest is not expected to increase until sometime on Thursday or Friday. The kill totaled 111,000 head, 2,000 below last week, but 1,000 more than last year. Boxed beef cutout values were steady on choice and sharply higher on select on light to moderate demand and heavy offerings. Choice beef was up .25 at 209.08, select was 2.14 higher at 196.93. Chicago Mercantile Exchange live cattle contracts settled 60 to 90 points lower. The strong support seen in some feeder cattle contracts and the bounce higher in beef values was not enough to overcome the widespread outside market losses, and concern that long term buyer support may be hard to sustain across the live cattle complex. Feeder cattle regained most of the losses seen in the early trade and settled 72 points higher to 57 lower. The aggressive fellow through pressure in the grain market created some support to feeder cattle futures, although the lack of support seen in live cattle markets worked to erode a portion of the buying activity. Feeder cattle receipts at the Ozarks Regional Stockyards at West Plains, Missouri totaled 2,990 head on Tuesday. Compared to last week, feeder steers traded 3.00 to 6.00 higher. Heifer calves were steady to 5.00 higher with too few yearlings last week for an adequate comparison, however undertones were higher. Demand was very good on a moderate supply which included several multi-pot load drafts of yearlings. Feeder steers medium and large 1 averaging 731 pounds brought 143.84 per hundredweight. Feeder heifers weighing 892 pounds averaged 125.91. Sharp losses of up to 262 points in the August and October lean hog contracts were seen on Wednesday with a lack of market fundamentals as well as further technical pressure. The market remained lower through the session based on a lack of volume in the complex, and outside market pressure which limited overall buyer interest. Barrows and gilts in the Iowa/Minnesota direct trade closed .92 lower at 78.47 weighted average on a carcass basis, the west was down .75 at 78.51, and nationally the market was .11 lower at 77.76. Missouri direct base carcass meat price was steady to 1.00 higher from 69.00 to 75.00. Midwest hogs on a live basis closed steady to 1.00 higher from 47.00 to 60.00. The pork carcass cutout value was up .81 at 90.07 FOB plant. While this week?s hog slaughter will naturally be cut back thanks to the Fourth of July break, many expect that weekly kills through the balance of July will be quite ample, probably not falling below 2.1 million to 2.15 million head. The Wednesday hog kill was estimated by USDA at 434,000 head, 8,000 more than last week, and 17,000 greater than last year. The post Cattle buyer inquiry was light appeared first on Brownfield Ag News.      
Senate passes GMO labeling bill
Michigan Senator Debbie Stabenow makes her case for the GMO labeling compromise bill. On a vote of 63 to 30, the U.S. Senate has passed the GMO labeling bill. The bill preempts state laws requiring the labeling of genetically modified foods and establishes a federal mandatory disclosure system. In floor debate leading up to the final vote, Senate Agriculture Committee chair Pat Roberts stressed that GMOs do not present a safety or health issue. ?Science has proven again and again that the use of agricultural biotechnology is 100 percent safe,? Roberts said. Vermont Senator Bernie Sanders argued against the bill. ?This is just another shameful example of how big money interests are using their influence to enact policies that are contrary to what the vast majority of the American people want and what they support,? Sanders said. The American Soybean Association thanked the Senate for passing the bill. ASA president Richard Wilkins says that while the bill isn?t perfect, ?it?s the best legislation that can become law?. He urged the House to act quickly on the bill. The post Senate passes GMO labeling bill appeared first on Brownfield Ag News.      
USDA Seeks Applications for Funding to Develop Advanced Biofuels and Plant-Based Products
WASHINGTON, July 25, 2016 ? Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is seeking applications for funding to help support the development of advanced biofuels, renewable chemicals and biobased products.
Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Announces Substance Misuse Prevention Resources for Low Income Pregnant Women and Mothers In Order to Battle the Opioid Epidemic
Columbia, Missouri, July 22, 2016 ? Today, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack urged all State Health Officers to use the resources and opportunities provided through their Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) agencies in their substance misuse prevention efforts.
Dicamba crop injury investigated in SE Missouri
The Missouri Department of Agriculture is investigating more than 100 complaints of herbicide damage from mostly dicamba, and in a few cases 2-4-D, in four southeast Missouri counties. The department?s Judy Grundler testified Thursday before the Missouri House Appropriations Committee on Agriculture, saying there are reports of damage to soybeans and other crops? ?We also see damage in peaches. We are hearing damage in peanuts, purple hull peas, watermelons, tomatoes ? and, also, some alfalfa has been reported.? The University of Missouri Extension will hold a forum on dicamba injury at the Delta Fisher Research Center in Portageville next Friday, July 29th. Last week, the Extension released a survey showing only 43-percent of Missouri pesticide applicators read the label each time they mix and spray. At the hearing, Southeast Missouri State Representative Don Rone of Portageville said will introduce legislation in January to increase penalties on those who illegally spray pesticides. ? ? ? ? The post Dicamba crop injury investigated in SE Missouri appeared first on Brownfield Ag News.      
Continued concern with herbicide resistance weeds
Waterhemp in an Iowa soybean field (photo courtesy Iowa State University) Herbicide-resistant weeds continue to be a growing concern across the Midwest. Iowa State University Extension crops specialist Joel DeJong says part of the problem is a lack of new weed-killing chemistries. He says the last new family of herbicides was introduced in the 1980?s. ?It?s kind of scary because we?ve had lots of new products on the market, but they?re all from the same families that already existed,? DeJong says. ?Because of that, we kind of keep going back to the well and keep using the same ones?and if one works, we use it really hard.? DeJong says glyphosate is a good example. ?Glyphosate?Roundup?worked extremely well. And it still works extremely well on most weeds,? he says. ?However, there is one or two families of weeds in the state of Iowa that really have found a way to move around how glyphosate works?and so they?re becoming more resistant to it. Waterhemp is probably our biggest problem and that?s the one that most farmers have concerns about.? DeJong says even if crop protection companies were to develop a new line of herbicides, it could be several years before they hit the marketplace. ?If one got discovered today, to pass through all the hoops and everything else to make sure it?s safe to the environment and to people and to animals, it would take at least a decade before that would become available to the market. So right now we?ve got to figure out how we?re using the tools we?ve got?how do we use them better and how do we reduce the risk of maybe developing more resistance in our weeds.? DeJong was one of the presenters at Thursday?s ISU ?Weeds Week? seminar in Cherokee, Iowa. The last Weeds Week meeting takes place Friday in Boone. Dennis Morrice, KLEM-Le Mars, Iowa, contributed to this story. The post Continued concern with herbicide resistance weeds appeared first on Brownfield Ag News.      
USDA Announces Additional Efforts to Make School Environments Healthier
WASHINGTON, July 21, 2016 ? Today, the Obama Administration is announcing four final rules that implement important provisions of the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act (HHFKA) building on the progress schools across the country have already made in the improved nutritional quality of meals served in schools.
Statement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on the Signing of the Global Food Security Act
WASHINGTON, July 20, 2016 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today released the following statement on S.1252, the Global Food Security Act of 2016, signed by President Obama today:
USDA Invests More than $9 Million to Support Small Businesses in 12 States
WASHINGTON, July 15, 2016 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the investment of more than $9 million in loans and grants to support job growth and economic development in 12 states. The funding is being provided through USDA's Rural Economic Development Loan and Grant (REDLG) program, through which USDA provides zero-interest loans and grants to utilities that lend funds to local businesses for projects to create and retain employment.
White House Rural Council Announces Assistance to Grow Small Business Exports
WASHINGTON, July 14, 2016 - The White House Rural Council (WHRC), today announced a workshop series to provide targeted assistance for rural small businesses working to grow demand through international sales. The announcement was made by WHRC Chair Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, Commerce Secretary Penny Pritzker and Deputy Postmaster General Ronald A. Stroman.
USDA Funds 81 Distance Learning and Telemedicine Projects in 32 States
WASHINGTON, July 14, 2016 - Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will fund 81 Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) projects in 32 states.
Agriculture Secretary Vilsack Accepts ?Federal Agency of the Year Award? at League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) National Convention
WASHINGTON, July 13, 2016 ? Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today accepted the Federal Agency of the Year award from the League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC) and delivered remarks at the organization?s 87th Annual National Convention. This award recognizes USDA?s commitment to civil rights and equal opportunity under the Obama Administration.
USDA Awards More than $26 Million for Affordable Farmworker Housing
WASHINGTON, July 13, 2016 - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced today $26 million to help provide safe and sanitary housing for farmworkers in nine affordable rental communities in four states. The funding will support 439 rental units in California, Florida, Kansas and Texas. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack will make the announcement later today during an address to the League of United Latin American Citizens' (LULAC) 87th annual national convention.
World
Top 20 Dairy Companies See Movement After Challenging 2015
Dairy Farmers of America climbs to #4, while Land O’ Lakes Falls from the rankings.
Cows' Summer Heat Stress Increases When Grazing Toxic Fescue Pastures
Good growth for most grasses won’t be good for toxic tall fescue pastures, says Craig Roberts, University of Missouri Extension forage specialist.
Corn Resumes it Downward Trend
Could Soybeans be Ready for a Bounce?
Since June 13th the November Soybean contract has dropped a little over $2.00 as weather concerns have been washed away by...
Market Highlights: Cattle Feeding Circus
Cattle feeders are walking a tight rope as fed cattle prices continue to decline. 
Is Your Community Home to a FFA Star Finalist?
The future of agriculture never fails to show flashes of excellence from the National FFA Organization. The group has just announced 16 students across the U.S. as finalists for its 2016 top achievement awards.
Intrexon Proposes 'Controlled Flowering' to Boost Yields
“Controlled flowering has the potential to achieve dramatic increases in yield and vigor.” 
6 Things You Need to Know about the Soybean Market Right Now
Farmers may feel anxious over recent dips in soybean futures, and bearish summer weather forecasts, but they shouldn’t worry. Why? Because of export superstar China with its continuing strong demand, according to Rich Nelson, chief strategist for the marketing firm Allendale, in McHenry, Ill.  Here are six takeaways from Allendale’s latest soybean market outlook.
Pension Funds Cite Steady Farmland Returns
Returns from farmland held by pension funds held steady through the second quarter of...
Machinery Pete Dissects the Newest Tractor Trends
What’s hot with used equipment? Used farm equipment expert Greg Peterson – a.k.a. “Machinery Pete – says he some “fascinating data” has turned up on www.MachineryPete.com over the past week.
Consultant Raises U.S. Corn Yield to 168 bu. per acre
Dr. Michael Cordonnier says rain helped to maintain good soil moisture last week, mitigating some of the potential harmful impacts of high temps.
Marrone Bio Innovations Registers Bioinsecticides in Mexico
Marrone Bio Innovations Inc., a leading provider of biological pest management and plant health products, announced that Mexico regulatory authorities have approved for sale both of the company’s bioinsecticides, GRANDEVO and VENERATE. GRANDEVO and VENERATE are advanced broad-spectrum bioinsecticides that offer protection against chewing and sucking insects and mites including thrips, whiteflies, Asian citrus psyllid, armyworms and other pest caterpillars, Lygus bug, mealybugs, and soil-inhabiting pests. The active ingredients in GRANDEVO and VENERATE bioinsecticides are different, novel species of non-living bacteria that produce insecticidal compounds during the fermentation manufacturing process. Mexico is a major producer and exporter of fruits and vegetables, with exports to the U.S. alone totaling $19.3 billion in 2013-15 according to the USDA Economic Research Service. Mexican growers of exported produce must meet the increasing demands of consumers, retailer preferences and government restrictions on chemical and pesticide residues. Official field studies performed in Mexico, as well as in other parts of the world, show both GRANDEVO and VENERATE have equivalent or better performance to chemical pesticides on certain pest species. Both products have unique and complex modes of action that provide growers with a much needed component in their programs to control mounting insect resistance to existing products. And, both GRANDEVO and VENERATE provide operational flexibility, with minimum re-entry intervals and no pre-harvest interval, allowing crops to be harvested soon after application. Both products are exempt from the requirement of a food tolerance, and therefore provide an effective solution for late season pest control on exported crops that are subject to maximum residue levels. Dr. Pam Marrone, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Marrone Bio Innovations, commented, “Mexico is a key market for MBI, as Mexico is a major agricultural producer of fresh fruits and vegetables, with much of its production destined for U.S. and Canadian markets. We believe the pesticide residue tolerance exempt status of both GRANDEVO and VENERATE will help facilitate the movement of produce both ways across the U.S. and Mexican border, as well as into other markets that have strict limits on pesticide residues.” Julie Versman, Senior Director of International Business, added, “Both GRANDEVO and VENERATE will provide Mexican growers with effective, reduced-risk pest management tools. Mexican regulatory agencies have designated both MBI insecticides with ?green band’ status, meaning the products present minimal health risks to farm workers and food processors and, due to their worker safety, can be sprayed with minimal pre-harvest and re-entry intervals.” GRANDEVO and VENERATE are registered in Mexico for use on 1) Solanaceous crops, such as tomato, pepper, chili, eggplant and potato for thrips, beet armyworm and both nymphs and adults of potato psylla, 2) Berry crops, such as strawberry, raspberry and blackberry for red mites and two-spotted spider mites, and 3) Cole crops, such as broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and brussels sprouts for diamond-back moth. With 2016 field trials in Mexico on citrus and Asian citrus psyllid completed, efforts are now underway to expand the label to include Asian citrus psyllid control on citrus. Both products are compliant with the National Organic Program (NOP) and listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI).
Vive Crop Protection Nanotech Products Debut in U.S.
After being introduced to the market in March, two products that feature a new nanotech delivery system for fungicide and insecticide have performed well in field observations, according to Vive Crop Protection Products. The technology, called Allosperse, uses polymer nanoparticle shuttles to control how and when crop protection products are delivered to the plant after being applied. This is new technology for agriculture that is comparable to how some pharmaceuticals are delivered to precise targets within the human body. Farmers in Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Iowa and Illinois applied the two new products, AZteroid and Bifender, to corn and soybean acres this spring. In addition, trials were conducted in potato and sugarbeet plots. It?s still too early to assess yield results, said Dr. Darren Anderson, chief communications officer for Vive Crop Protection, but producer feedback and field observations have been excellent. ?AZteroid is the first fungicide built for compatibility with liquid fertilizer, and producers were pleased with their new-found ability to apply starter fertilizer and fungicide in-furrow in a single pass.? In field observations, corn and soybean plants grown with a combination of starter fertilizer and AZteroid applied in-furrow were larger with significantly more root mass when compared with plants that only received starter fertilizer. This combination of AZteroid and fertilizer was applied as one uniform mixture, thanks to the Allosperse technology. Crop protection products typically fail to mix thoroughly with liquid fertilizer. However, with Allosperse this problem is no longer an issue. As a result, multiple products can be conveniently applied in a single pass across the field. ?One producer relayed a story of mixing AZteroid with starter fertilizer in the tank, only to be delayed for four days because of rain,? Dr. Anderson explained. ?When he was finally able to get in the field, there was only a small amount of residue in the check balls and even that came right off once he got moving.? Producers said the products worked well when mixed directly in the fertilizer tank as well as when applied through a Dosatron. There were no problems even with a high-zinc starter fertilizer, and the products exhibited excellent mixing properties with glyphosate and Capture? LFR?.
Showers in Ohio Valley, Far Upper Midwest
Rain in the forecast for Mid-South into the northern Mid-Atlantic Region...
GROW Exhibit at the St.Louis Science Center Highlights Farmers Too 7-26 audio
In today's show we continue to talk with representatives about the new GROW exhibit at the St. Louis Science Center. It's free and open 7 days a week!​