Analysts say land prices have stabilized

Farmland values in Iowa have dropped 15 to 20 percent from their highs in 2013. But Kyle Hansen, land broker with Hertz Real Estate Services, says prices have stabilized since the completion of the 2014 harvest. “We’ve actually seen a fairly steady market over the last 60 days,” Hansen says. “We hope that continues, and… Read more »

Group reports ‘progress’ in beef checkoff talks

After three years of negotiations, the group tasked with finding ways to improve the current beef checkoff is reporting “progress”. The Beef Checkoff Enhancement Working Group has drafted a memorandum of understanding (MOU) outlining proposed changes to the program. Scott Stuart serves as the co-facilitator of the working group. “The MOU covers, I think, the… Read more »

Nebraska school’s ‘Local Beef Initiative’ is a win-win

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One of current trends in the food business is the “Local Food Movement”, which includes efforts to have schools source more of their food from local farmers. Bridgeport Public School, located in Nebraska’s Panhandle, is doing just that through its “Local Beef Initiative”. The Bridgeport School is serving only locally-raised beef in its cafeterias to… Read more »

A conversation with HSUS’ Joe Maxwell–Part 2

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In part 2 of our two-part conversation with Joe Maxwell, vice president of outreach and engagement for the Humane Society of the United States, we discuss the belief on the part of many livestock producers that HSUS’ ultimate goal is to reduce and eventually eliminate meat consumption. Maxwell also talks about the HSUS’ strategy in… Read more »

Grappling with farm program decisions

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Dr. James Richardson is co-director of the Agricultural & Food Policy Center at Texas A&M University and one of the co-authors of A&M’s on-line farm program calculator. Richardson tells Brownfield that the beauty of the 2014 farm bill is that it allows producers to customize the farm program to their own operations.  But with that… Read more »

A conversation with HSUS’ Joe Maxwell–Part 1

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In an effort to keep our listeners and readers updated on the activities and intentions of the Humane Society of the United States, we recently interviewed Joe Maxwell, director of outreach and engagement for HSUS. In Part 1 of our conversation, Maxwell responds to a Brownfield article outlining political defeats suffered by HSUS in 2014, including… Read more »

NCBA’s priorities: Taxes, Trade, Transportation

Taxes, trade and transportation—those are three of the top congressional priorities of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association in 2015. NCBA’s Colin Woodall says cattlemen need more certainty in the tax code and will push hard for general tax reform. “The reason why is to try to prevent what we saw at the end of 2014 where… Read more »

Market consultant ‘more optimistic’ on corn

The USDA projects the average corn price for the 2014-15 marketing year in a $3.35 to $3.95 range.  Many other projections seem to fall in the $3.50 to $4.00 range. But Moe Russell of Iowa-based Russell Consulting Group tells Brownfield he’s more optimistic than that. “I think there’s more demand than what we realize out… Read more »

HSUS’ Maxwell says ‘less meat’ is good

It’s not often you hear a livestock producer say Americans need to eat less meat. Missouri pork producer Joe Maxwell, who is also vice president of outreach and engagement for the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS), says he agrees with those who advocate for reduced meat consumption. “The reality is, whether you listen to the… Read more »

Nebraska Farm Bureau backs property tax relief bills

State Legislature

Nebraska Farm Bureau is expressing support for legislation that it says will provide property tax relief to the state’s farmers and ranchers. Two of the bills are sponsored by State Senator Lydia Brasch of Bancroft. One would send 20 percent of the state income taxes collected in a local school district back to the district… Read more »