President’s plan doesn’t address ag’s concerns

President Obama’s executive order on immigration does not include the guest worker program sought by the agriculture industry. Chuck Connor, president and CEO of the National Council of Farmer Cooperatives and chair of the Agriculture Workforce Coalition, says that while the President’s actions will alleviate some pressure in the short term, it does not offer… Read more »

EPA abandons RFS rulemaking for 2014

The Environmental Protection Agency says it will not finalize the 2014 Renewable Volume Obligations (RVO) for the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) this year. Instead, the agency says it will set the final 2014 volume standard next year, and try to get back on schedule in proposing the 2015 and 2016 blending volumes. Brian Jennings, executive… Read more »

GAO: Climate change impact on flood and crop ins.

A government report on the impact of climate change says increased losses in taxpayer-funded flood and crop insurance programs could be substantial in the coming decades. The Government Accountability Office, GAO, also examined how public insurers are preparing for climate change and resulting challenges. The GAO reviewed 20 studies, looked at federal and private sector… Read more »

Armed to Farm: Meet Military Veterans Ag Liaison

The United States Department of Agriculture has a new position — Military Veterans Agricultural Liaison. Karis Gutter is Deputy Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services and is taking on the additional role of MVA liaison, “As a Marine who served for more than six years, I clearly understand a number of the unique… Read more »

Vilsack on National Rural Health Day

U.S. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack says it’s a good day to celebrate National Rural Health Day, “As a result of the passage of the Affordable Care Act, we are seeing a reduction in the level of uninsured people in rural America.” And, he says there are other benefits, “Now, 3,500 people throughout rural America providing… Read more »

Take advantage of educational sessions

There is a lot of information to digest about the new safety net programs available to farmers. Stu Ellis, farm bill educator with the University of Illinois says farmers should really take advantage of the educational programs being offered by Extension and the Farm Service Agency.  “When you look at making a farm bill choice… Read more »

EPA sorting through WOTUS comments

Karl Brooks, the Region 7 Administrator for the U.S. Environmental Protection Administration tells Brownfield that the  Waters of the U.S. proposal is in a different phase now that the comment period has ended. “The objective of the agency now is to sort through those comments, look for the ones that help us accomplish our goals,… Read more »

Could you be holding the answer to GMO labeling?

Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack took part in the Presidential Lecture Series at Purdue yesterday. Several topics were addressed over the hour-long conversation – including the labeling of products containing genetically modified organisms. “These referendums and legislative inactments basically create conflict,” he says.  “They don’t allow the opportunity for agriculture to convey a positive message… Read more »

Smith: “Bad timing” on Corps work

Missouri Congressman Jason Smith says it’s bad timing for the Corps of Engineers to close down part of the lower Mississippi River for repairs. “We’re facing one of the largest harvests on record and by closing that line of the Mississippi River with barge traffic – it’s devastating to all of our farmers and just… Read more »

USDA to conduct December surveys

The USDA National Ag Statistics Service (NASS) will be conducting three major surveys in December to determine 2014 crop acreage and yields, as well as hog inventories.  Farmers will be asked to provide data for the 2014 Row Crops County Agricultural Production Survey, the December Agricultural Survey and the December Hog Report.  Most selected farmers… Read more »