NCBA says COOL has to go

Following the latest rebuke by the WTO of the U.S. Country of Origin Labeling (COOL) rule, the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) is renewing its call for COOL to be repealed. “We have looked at this every way we possibly can and there is no change that the Secretary of Agriculture can make that would… Read more »

Big bucks involved in Oregon’s GMO labeling battle

The battle over labeling of genetically modified food is officially Oregon’s most expensive ballot fight ever. According to the Statesman Journal, opponents and supporters of Measure 92 have raised a total of 17.6 million dollars.  Opponents of the proposition have raised 11.1 million dollars while supporters have raised 6.5 million. The opposition campaign’s largest donors… Read more »

Grassley says Congress needs to revisit COOL

Iowa Senator Chuck Grassley says Congress needs to “go back to the drawing board” on Country of Origin Labeling (COOL). Grassley was reacting to the WTO’s ruling that USDA’s revised COOL rule unfairly discriminates against Canada and Mexico. The National Farmers Union doesn’t want Congress to tamper with the COOL law. The group argues that… Read more »

Harvest progresses in Nebraska

Limited rainfall and above normal temperatures in Nebraska last week provided excellent harvest conditions. As of Sunday, soybean harvest stood at 69 percent, compared to 81 average.  Corn harvest was at 28 percent, well behind the 45 average.  Farmers were waiting for grain moisture levels, especially on irrigated corn, to dry down further.

Iowa farmers welcome good harvest weather

After repeated rain delays, Iowa farmers are finally seeing a stretch of good harvest weather. “The dry weather the last several days has been very helpful and farmers will be working long hours to get the crop in when conditions allow, ” says Iowa secretary of agriculture Bill Northey. As of Sunday, 61 percent of Iowa… Read more »

New tool measures crop yield gaps worldwide

Sub-Saharan Africa has the world’s largest gap in farm yields—70 to 90 percent below their potential—according to a new research tool unveiled at the Global Water for Food Conference in Seattle. The new web-based platform is called the Global Yield Gap and Water Productivity Atlas.  According to Frank Rijsberman, CEO of the international agricultural research… Read more »

Nebraska’s governor encourages E85 use

Nebraska Governor Dave Heineman is encouraging Nebraskans to use E85—the blend of 85 percent ethanol and 15 percent unleaded gasoline—the next time they fill up with a flex fuel vehicle. “Our farmers are anticipating record corn yields, which makes it the perfect time to encourage consumers to utilize one of the many products made from… Read more »

NCBA launches petition drive against checkoff proposal

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) is encouraging producers to sign an online petition opposing Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack’s proposal for a second national beef checkoff. The effort, called “Don’t Hijack the Beef Checkoff”, has a goal of 100-thousand signatures by November 12th. Vilsack says he has the authority to create a supplemental checkoff… Read more »

Wheat breeder, Borlaug protege, receives World Food Prize

In a ceremony this week in Des Moines, the 2014 World Food Prize was presented to Dr. Sanjaya Rajaram for his scientific research that led to a significant increase in world wheat production.  He is credited with breeding 480 wheat varieties used in more than 50 countries. The 71-year-old Rajaram, who grew up in India,… Read more »

‘Really good’ corn yields in central Nebraska

It’s been a good week for harvest activity in Nebraska. Bart Beattie, who farms near the town of Sumner in central Nebraska, tells Brownfield that they wrapped up soybeans earlier in the week.  He says their soybean yields were down this year. “A lot of it was due to early frost and some early hail… Read more »