NCBA opposes creation of another beef checkoff program

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Frustrated by the inability of the Beef Checkoff Enhancement Working Group to reach agreement on key issues, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack has reportedly proposed the creation of a second beef checkoff program–one that would operate separately from the current beef checkoff program. Forrest Roberts, CEO of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association, says Vilsack made that… Read more »

Judge denies states’ lawsuit on California egg law

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A federal judge in California has thrown out the lawsuit filed by Missouri Attorney General Kris Koster against California’s restrictions on egg sales from other states. Koster was joined by attorneys general from five other states:  Iowa, Nebraska, Alabama, Kentucky and Oklahoma. They all claim that the California law interferes with interstate commerce and would… Read more »

FSA says online tools offer help to farmers

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USDA is working to educate farmers about the new safety net programs available as part of the 2014 Farm Bill.  Recently appointed USDA Farm Service Agency Administrator Val Dolcini made a stop this week in Indiana to visit one on one with farmers. He says the first thing farmers will need to do is update… Read more »

End to Brazil/U.S. cotton dispute

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U.S. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack and U.S. Trade Representative Michael Froman announced the settlement today in which the U.S. will make a one-time payment of $300 Million dollars to the Brazilian Cotton Institute – an assistance fund for Brazilian farmers. In turn, Brazil agrees to give up the right to retaliate against the U.S. with… Read more »

Soybean stocks drop 35%

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  Any other year, a quarterly soybean stocks figure below 100 million bushels would have been bullish for futures. However, that also came with an increase in last year’s production number, not to mention this year’s expected record crop. Either way, U.S. Commodities President Don Roose calls the number “a little bit of a head-scratcher”,… Read more »

FarmDoc’s Farm Bill Tool Box explained

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Farmers are encouraged to check out the online tools developed for them to help choose between the ARC and PLC programs in the Commodity Title of the Farm Bill. The University of Illinois has built one of those tools — “The Farm Bill Toolbox, part of the FarmDoc site here at the University of Illinois… Read more »

Hogs and pigs down 2%, breeding herd up 2%

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  USDA’s quarterly hogs and pigs report does show a smaller inventory, but is pointing towards re-expansion of the U.S. herd. All hogs and pigs in the U.S. as of September 1 came out at 65.361 million head, down 2% on the year, but up 6% from the previous quarter following a revision by USDA… Read more »

Report: Climate change presents big challenges for ag

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One of the lead authors of a new University of Nebraska-Lincoln (UNL) report on climate change says Nebraska farmers and ranchers will face significant weather-related challenges in the coming decades. UNL climate scientist Don Wilhite says average temperatures will continue to rise–as much as nine degrees in a worst-case scenario–with a substantial increase in high-temperature… Read more »

Vilsack unveils risk management programs

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U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Thursday officially unveiled the Agricultural Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage programs to help farmers manage risk. “I think it’s a recognition that there’s significant risk in farming,” said Secretary Vilsack, during a conference call to reporters Thursday, “not just from weather related circumstances, but also precipitous drops in crop… Read more »

Bayer says ‘neonics’ are essential

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A leading ag chemical company that is making a big investment in bee health and safety says it will not be moving away from a class of pesticides that some say is causing unnecessary bee deaths. “We believe that neonics are an essential tool for growers – in the Midwest but across the U.S. and… Read more »