It takes a lot to grow potatoes

Unless you are in the potato industry, you probably do not realize that many potato plants start out in test tubes in a sanitary lab.  Alex Crockford is Program Director of the Wisconsin Seed Potato Certification Program at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, he says because potatoes start as tubers they are more susceptible to disease than plants which come from seeds.

Crockford talks about the process 3:00 mp3

It’s still important to scout fields

Even at this point in the growing season, field scouting is important. Alex Johnson, Team Sales Agronomist for Beck’s Hybrids says for both the soybean crop and the corn crop there are some things going on that need watching.

Audio: Alex Johnson, Agronomist, Beck’s Hybrids (2:55 mp3)

Technology should be led by innovation

Don’t let technology allow less use of brain power, advises Dr. David Kohl, professor emeritus in agriculture economics at Virginia Tech University in Blacksburg, Va.  He’s pushing to keep the human element in technology.  Speaking at Wyffels Corn Strategies, Dr. Kohl also talks about what might steer the education of young people preparing for careers in agriculture.

AUDIO: Dr. David Kohl (3 min. MP3)

Analyst offers risk management advice on soybeans

Market analyst Don Roose, president of West Des Moines-based U.S. Commodities, believes there’s another $1.00 to $1.25 downside potential in the soybean market going into the fall.  Brownfield’s John Perkins asked Roose what risk management advice he is giving to soybean producers.

AUDIO: Don Roose (3:00 MP3)

FSA deadlines coming up

Some very important deadlines coming up at the Farm Service Agency: Brad Pfaff is director of the FSA in Wisconsin and he says dairy producers need to make a decision on the Margin Protection Program and grain farmers have to choose between the Price Loss Coverage and Agricultural Revenue Coverage programs.

AUDIO:Pfaff talks about the options 3:11 mp3

Preparing for tighter margins

USDA’s August crop report showed signs of record corn and soybean crops.  Purdue Ag Economist Chris Hurt says that means farmers could see the lowest commodity prices in recent memory AND tighter margins.

So what will that mean for farmers as they head in to 2015?

AUDIO: Chris Hurt, Purdue Economist (3:00mp3)

Drought tolerant corn

Alex Lindsey, a PhD candidate at Ohio State University talks about the research he’s been conducting on drought tolerant corn. Research that indicates drought tolerant corn has potential.

Audio: Alex Lindsey, PhD Candidate, Ohio State university (2:55 mp3)

Propane council urges locking in supplies

Last year some factors combined to cause an abrupt jump in the price of propane as well as a severe dent in supply.  Mark Leitman, with the Propane Education and Research Council, provides some suggestions about what to do to avoid that this year.  Leitman tells Brownfield Ag News that southern farmers are within weeks of harvest and grain drying, which will strengthen demand for propane.

AUDIO: Mark Leitman (3 min. MP3)

Good times in the cattle business

Kevin Good

Kevin Good

“One for the ages!”

That’s how CattleFax senior market analyst Kevin Good describes the run of record high cattle prices in 2014.  So how long can the good times last?  We posed that question to Good at the recent Cattle Industry Summer Conference in Denver.

AUDIO: Kevin Good (3:00 MP3)

Who is positioned to take advantage of pork and beef void?

We continue our conversation with Will Sawyer, Vice President: Animal Protein, Food and Agribusiness Research for Rabobank.  Their recent quarterly hog report says Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea virus has reduced the U.S. hog herd significantly and slaughter numbers have yet to bottom-out.  Given what PEDv has done to hogs and with the smallest beef herd decades: who is positioned to take-up the slack?

AUDIO:Sawyer talks about the situation 3:32 mp3