Wednesday, January 29, 2014

Wednesday January 29 Ag News

House Passes of Farm Bill Conference Report

House Ag Committee Chairman Frank Lucas issued the following statement today after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the Agricultural Act of 2014 by a vote of 251-166.

"I am pleased a majority of my House colleagues joined me in supporting a five-year, comprehensive farm bill.  I appreciate the efforts of everyone who helped get us here.  This is legislation we can all be proud of because it fulfills the expectations the American people have of us.  They expect us to work together to find ways to reduce the cost of the federal government.  The Agricultural Act contributes major savings to deficit reduction, significant reforms to policy, and yet still provides a safety net not only for the production of American food and fiber, but also to ensure our fellow citizens have enough food to eat. I am hopeful this legislation will enjoy the same success when the Senate considers it, and I encourage the president to sign it quickly into law," said Chairman Frank Lucas.

Farm Policy Reforms

The Agricultural Act of 2014 includes the most significant reduction to farm policy spending in history by improving agricultural programs.
-   Repeals Direct Payments and limits producers to risk management tools that offer protection when they suffer significant losses.
-    Limits on payments are reduced, eligibility rules are tightened, and means tests are streamlined to make farm programs more accountable.
-    Strengthens crop insurance, a successful public/private partnership that ensures farmers invest in their own risk management.
-    Provides historic reforms to dairy policy by repealing outdated and ineffective dairy programs.  Offers producers a new, voluntary, margin protection program without imposing government-mandated supply controls.
-    Supports small businesses and beginning farmers and ranchers with training and access to capital.

Food Stamp Reforms

The Agricultural Act of 2014 makes the first reforms to the food stamp program since the welfare reforms of 1996 while maintaining critical food assistance to families in need.
-    Closes the “heat-and-eat” loophole that artificially increases benefit levels when states provide nominal LIHEAP assistance.
-    Establishes a 10-state pilot to empower states to engage able-bodied adults in mandatory work programs.
-    Prohibits USDA from engaging in SNAP recruitment activities, and advertising SNAP on TV, radio, billboards and through foreign governments.
-    Ensures illegal immigrants, lottery winners, traditional college students, and the deceased do not receive benefits.
-    Ensures SNAP recipients are not receiving benefits in multiple states.
-    Prevents abuses such as water dumping to exchange bottles for cash.
-    Demands outcomes from existing employment and training programs.
-    Prohibits states from manipulating SNAP benefit levels by eliminating medical marijuana as an allowable medical expense.
-    Allows states to pursue retailer fraud through a pilot investigation program and crack down on trafficking through data mining, terminal ID, and other measures.
-    Increases assistance for food banks.

Additional Reforms & Regulatory Relief

The Agricultural Act of 2014 includes multiple regulatory relief provisions benefitting agricultural and forestry industries.  
-   Consolidates 23 duplicative and overlapping conservation programs into 13.
-    Provides one year of full funding for the Payment In Lieu of Taxes (PILT) program, which provides funding for vital services in communities containing federal lands.
-    Provides certainty to the forest products industry by clarifying that forest roads and related silvicultural activities should not be treated as a point source under the Clean Water Act. 
-    Creates a permanent subcommittee within the EPA Science Advisory Board to conduct peer review of EPA actions that would negatively impact agriculture.
-    Enhances coordination between USDA, EPA, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (FWS) and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) regarding the conflict between laws governing pesticide use and the Endangered Species Act.
-    Enhances coordination between USDA and the U.S. FWS regarding actions taken to manage the lesser prairie chicken.
-    Eliminates duplicative reporting requirements for seed importers; requires improved economic analysis of FDA regulations.

Smith Votes for Farm Bill Conference Report

Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) voted in favor of H.R. 2642, the Farm Bill Conference Report.

“Nebraska producers have waited for more than three years for a long-term Farm Bill.  Policy certainty will help our farmers and ranchers remain competitive and benefit consumers, and the bill contains important reforms to save an estimated $23 billion for hardworking taxpayers.”

“Like any compromise, this legislation is not perfect.  There are several trade and livestock provisions which are not included in the bill.  I support a return to regular order, and am pleased we allowed the process to work, but it is my hope this body will act quickly to find solutions to the outstanding issues not addressed in this bill.”

The House passed the Conference Report to accompany H.R. 2642, the Agriculture Act of 2014, commonly known as the Farm Bill, by a vote of 251 to 166. 

Editor's Note:  Congressman Lee Terry also voted in favor of H.R. 2642. 

Fortenberry Comments on Farm Bill Vote

Congressman Jeff Fortenberry today commented on the passage of H.R. 2642, the Farm Bill Conference Report.  He voted against the measure.

“I have worked for years to help develop a responsible Farm Bill that provides certainty to producers, and I voted for the earlier versions.  Today’s measure includes some important reforms, such as ending the practice of direct payments, strengthening risk management tools for farmers,  requiring sound conservation plans, and providing a long-term solution to help mid-size rural communities address severe housing challenges.

“However, this Farm Bill  missed a key opportunity for significant reform. Responsible payment limits save taxpayer money, prevent fraud and abuse of the system, and level the playing field for smaller farmers. Payment limits reform passed both the House and Senate with significant bipartisan majorities – but the conference committee plowed it under.  I could not support today’s measure in good conscience.”

Statement by Steve Nelson, Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation President, On U.S. House Passage of Farm Bill

“The House’s passage of a new five-year farm bill is welcomed news to Nebraska farm and ranch families. Throughout the past few years Farm Bureau has sought to move U.S. farm policy in a direction that uses crop insurance and revenue loss protection as the foundation of a safety net for farmers and ranchers. While not perfect, the farm bill conference report is a step in that direction.” 

“We are also pleased by the inclusion and retroactive re-authorization of funding for livestock disaster programs that provide assistance to Nebraska livestock producers who have felt the greatest pressures from the 2012 drought and those ranchers in northwest Nebraska hit by the blizzard late last year.” 

“With passage in the House, it is our hope the U.S. Senate will follow with swift action so that this bill can move to the President's desk for his signature. The enactment of this bill will provide much needed certainty to Nebraska farm and ranch families.”  

Nebraska Cattlemen pleased with Farm Bill passage, disappointed in exclusion of GIPSA and MCOOL

Nebraska Cattlemen commends the House of Representatives and the Nebraska Delegation on completing the Farm Bill. NC appreciates all the effort to resolve many of the contentious issues that arose during deliberations.

Due to the exclusion of certain livestock provisions, Nebraska Cattlemen is extremely disappointed with the exclusion of language on the Grain Inspection Packers and Stockyards Act (GIPSA), the Conaway-Costa amendment. If included, the Conaway-Costa amendment would have refocused the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s regulation on the five specific areas of contraction and prevented much unneeded government intrusion in the free market.

NC is also disappointed that a WTO-compliant resolution to mandatory Country-of-Origin Labeling (MCOOL) was not included in the final Farm Bill, particularly in the face of retaliatory actions by the governments of Mexico and Canada.

“Nebraska Cattlemen has direct policy on these issues and it is disheartening to see that a sensible resolution was not achieved for GIPSA and MCOOL”, said Jeff Rudolph, Nebraska Cattlemen President. “Even though rewrites of these very important and key issues were not included due to the need of passing a long awaited Farm Bill, we will, and have already continued discussions with our delegation to keep the GIPSA and MCOOL discussion at the forefront of our membership.”

Nebraska Cattlemen continues to work for the betterment of members, and fully appreciates the many positives that the 2014 Farm Bill brings to the livestock industry such as the renewal of the Livestock Indemnity Program (LIP) and appropriating funds retroactively to 2012 and 2013 to cover disasters as well as through the life of the Farm Bill.

Nebraska Cattlemen is also pleased with the Livestock Forage Program that provides funds for grazing losses from drought or fire and the Environmental Quality Incentives Program that allocates 60 percent of its mandatory funding for livestock production.
“In total Nebraska's farmers and ranchers will benefit from the business securities that a new farm bill represents”, said Rudolph.

Iowa Soybean Association: Time for Senate to act on Farm Bill

Iowa Soybean Association President-Elect Tom Oswald of Cleghorn, Iowa, issued the following statement regarding Tuesday’s passage of the Agricultural Act of 2014 by the U.S. House of Representatives on a vote of 251-156:

 “Today’s affirmative vote by the House of Representatives brings us one step closer to a Farm Bill and greater certainty for farmers and security for American consumers. We now urge the Senate to carefully consider the legislation and act.

“The bipartisan approach means compromising. The Iowa Soybean Association has been actively engaged throughout the discussion to ensure the needs of soybean farmers are represented in this important legislation. While not perfect, it brings some certainty to farmers regarding risk management, export market promotions and growing the nation’s biodiesel and biobased product sectors.

“The legislation deserves timely action by the Senate. In doing so, the U.S. Department of Agriculture will have the time needed to successfully implement programs for 2014 crops.

 “Several priorities for soybean farmers are included in the legislation including a flexible farm safety net that offers a choice between price-based and revenue-based risk management tools and maintains the decoupling of payments from current planted acreage under both programs. It also streamlines greater adoption of conservation programs by soybean farmers who are committed to continuously improving environmental performance.

“We encourage soybean farmers to continue to monitor the bill and to contact their Senator to ensure that their opinions are heard and addressed.”

Soy Farmers Cheer House Approval of Farm Bill, Urge Senate to Pass Bill Quickly

Following this morning’s passage of the Agricultural Act of 2014 by the House of Representatives, the American Soybean Association (ASA) applauded the vote and quickly turned its attention to the upper chamber, encouraging the Senate to take up and pass the farm bill as quickly as possible. ASA President and Iowa farmer Ray Gaesser reiterated just how close the vote brings soybean farmers to a bill more than three years in the making.

“We are very, very close,” said Gaesser. “The House has done its part and come together across party lines to pass a good bill—a compromise bill—that represents the needs of soybean farmers and so many other aspects of agriculture. The House is to be commended for its work, but there’s no time to waste. We’ve been operating without a farm bill since the end of September; that means no certainty when it comes to risk management, export market promotion,  programs that assist our industry’s growing biodiesel and biobased products sectors, and countless others. Moreover, USDA needs time to put these programs in place for 2014 crops, which begin to be harvested in May.  The Senate needs to take up the bill and pass it immediately so we can put this process behind us and keep producing and planning for the tough challenges ahead.”

ASA has been active in support of the bill, which provides for multiple soybean farmer priorities, most notably a flexible farm safety net that includes a choice between price-based and revenue-based risk management tools and maintains the decoupling of payments from current planted acreage under both programs.

ASA supports the bill’s risk management framework; its strengthening of crop insurance; streamlining and optimization of conservation programs; investment in critical trade development and renewables like biodiesel and biobased products; support for beginning farmers and ranchers and acknowledgment of the role of agricultural research.

“We have maintained throughout this process that we are willing to work together with all of agriculture to move this process forward,” Gaesser said. “The bill is a reflection of that willingness to cooperate and compromise and Chairwoman Stabenow, Chairman Lucas, and Ranking Members Cochran and Peterson deserve great credit for producing a bill that captures that cooperation and compromise so well.

“We can see the finish line,” he added. “It’s been a long, long road to this point, but we’re almost there. It’s up to the Senate now to bring this process to fruition by passing the farm bill.”

Corn Growers Thank House for Quick Farm Bill Action

The National Corn Growers Association thanked members of the House of Representatives for quick passage today of the 2014 farm bill, the Agricultural Act of 2014. The bill passed the lower chamber with a 251-166 vote.

“We’re thrilled to see today’s action on the part of the House and look forward to an equally fast consideration in the Senate,” said NCGA President Martin Barbre, who observed the floor vote from the House gallery while visiting the Capitol. “This legislation provides an adequate and flexible farm safety net, as well as a strong federal crop insurance program. More importantly, farmers need the certainty of a new five-year law, and we are happy to see this legislation includes many reforms we’ve supported and stressed over the years, reforms that make sense both for farmers and taxpayers.”

Among other specific provisions, the bill:

•    Eliminates controversial direct payments while maintaining decoupled farm support programs that will minimize the possibility of planting and production distortions that could trigger new World Trade Organization challenges.
•    Allows farmer to either maintain existing crop acreage base or to reallocate their current base to reflect average acres planted to covered commodities in 2009-2012, a reform that will make programs more relevant and more defensible while not tying them to current-year plantings.
•    Consolidates 23 previous conservation programs into 13, and focuses conservation efforts on working lands.  It also ties conservation compliance for wetlands and highly erodible land to premium support for crop insurance.
•    Maintains authorizations for important agricultural research programs, including AFRI, as well as including a new Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research that will provide a structure and mandatory funding for new public/private partnerships and investments that will further USDA’s research mission.
•    Maintains authorizations and funding levels for export promotion, including the Foreign Market Development (FMD) Program and the Market Access Program (MAP).
•    Continues the combined authorization of both agricultural and nutrition programs, a linkage that has been essential in enacting every farm bill since 1974.

National Grange happy to see Farm Bill Passes House

On Wednesday, Jan. 29, the House passed the five-year comprehensive Farm Bill package proposed by the bipartisan Farm Bill conference committee on Monday, Jan. 27. The Farm Bill now goes to the Senate for a full vote and then to President Obama for his signature, a process that legislators and agricultural groups hope to see completed no later than next week.

Now two years overdue, American agriculture has patiently waited for legislators to reach an agreement on the nearly $1 trillion piece of legislation that funds American agricultural programs through 2018, National Grange Legislative Director Grace Boatright said Wednesday.

"American agriculture has withstood uncertainty and economic instability for over two years in the absence of a renewed comprehensive Farm Bill. They've been unable to make valuable, long-term decisions regarding their businesses and unable to grant their households and local communities the resources they require to move forward. Today, however, we are happy to see that the needs of farmers and ranchers across the country - and the millions of people who benefit from their work - are being made a priority." Boatright said.

The bill passed the House by a vote of 251-166, giving reassurance to Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow that the legislation could pass her chamber by next week.

The 949-page Farm Bill saves nearly $23 billion over a 10-year period, a third of which comes from the Nutrition Title that funds the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP). Other savings are reached through the elimination of the direct payment system. The Grange will be watching this issue closely as the bill works its way through the Senate.

NAWG Applauds House for Passing Farm Bill

A statement from the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) President Bing Von Bergen, a wheat farmer and seedsman from Moccasin, Mont:  “I and my fellow wheat growers applaud the House for passing the farm bill conference report this morning.  We look forward to a speedy vote in the Senate and the President’s signature as soon as possible. This bill provides our nation’s wheat farmers with the certainty they need and deserve. “

NSP Praises House Passage of the Farm Bill

National Sorghum Producers commends the House of Representatives for coming together and finally passing the Agriculture Act of 2014, H.R. 2642, by a vote of 251-166.

“The hard work and tenacity demonstrated by agriculture committee leadership is to be commended,” said J.B. Stewart, NSP chairman and sorghum farmer from Keyes, Okla. “It’s been a long road but the process thorough, and NSP applauds Chairman Frank Lucas (R-Okla.), Ranking Member Collin Peterson (D-Minn.) and their staffs for successfully bringing a good farm bill across the House floor.”

The bill achieves substantial budget savings but maintains balanced and solid protection for America’s farmers and ranchers. NSP looks forward to the Senate vote and hopes to see it through to fruition.

Statement by Bob Stallman, President, American Farm Bureau Federation, Regarding House Passage of Farm Bill

“The American Farm Bureau Federation commends the House for its passage of the new five-year farm bill today. It’s been a tough road for the legislation during the past two years, but we are pleased with the clear bipartisan vote that prevailed. We appreciate the conferees’ diligent work in making some tough decisions to put forth a solid bill and in getting it to this crucial point.

“We now turn our attention to the Senate for timely passage of the bill, which will provide farmers and ranchers certainty for the coming year and allow the Agriculture Department to begin planning for implementation of the bill’s provisions.

“Farm Bureau is optimistic the final 2014 farm bill will soon be ready for the president’s signature, and America’s farmers and ranchers can, with certainty, continue with their business of providing food and jobs for America.”

House Passes Farm Bill, NFU Praises Efforts

National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson issued the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the H.R. 2642, the Agricultural Act of 2014, by a 251-166 vote this morning.

“On behalf of the family farmers, ranchers, fishermen, rural residents and America’s consumers, I commend the House on passing the farm bill. The conference report is a true compromise and I am pleased to have certainty for all Americans.

“The farm bill has always been a bipartisan effort, and for that I am thankful. I urge the Senate to take up the conference report right away so the 2014 Farm Bill can be signed into law by the president and the policies can be put into action.”

Practical Time and Temperature Options to Curb PEDV

In a perfect world, all truck and trailers transporting hogs would be washed, disinfected and dried after every load. But since that’s not the case. What are the workable alternatives as we face Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea Virus (PEDV)? Pork Checkoff funded research at Iowa State University to get some answers.

“We were looking for alternatives between the full-blown-- washing, disinfecting and drying trailers—and doing nothing,” says Derald Holtkamp, DVM, Iowa State University. “We didn’t have any alternatives in the middle that would work to at least reduce the risk of PEDV exposure, if not eliminate it entirely.”

Having a practical alternative is particularly important for vehicles transporting market hogs and cull sows. A field study headed by Jim Lowe, DVM, University of Illinois, in the early days of the PEDV outbreak found that trucks/trailers hauling pigs to market were a source of cross contamination. At the time, 17.3% of the trailers tested positive for PEDV at market. The study showed that each PEDV-contaminated trailer arriving at a plant contaminated between 0.20 to 2.30 additional trailers.

“That’s as close to a smoking gun as you can get,” Holtkamp says. “It tells us we are moving this virus all around.”

So, Iowa State researchers looked at options for trucks/trailers that had been scraped and swept of organic matter, but not washed. They focused on finding time and temperature combinations that would inactivate the virus. In the end, they discovered that only two options worked—heating the trailer to 160 F for 10 minutes or leaving it sit at 68 F for seven days. For the high-end temperatures, researchers concentrated on 145 F and 160 F for 10 minutes. “Heating a trailer to 160 is expensive—it takes a lot of propane or gas,” Holtkamp says. “It would be good to see if other time and temperature combinations between 145 F and 160 F would work.” However, he adds that given the virulence of PEDV, he would not be surprised if 160 F was the minimum temperature.

Housing a truck/trailer at 68 F for 7 days is not feasible for many operations, but for producers who haul one load of pigs a week it offers a solution. “If you’re storing the trailer in an unheated machine shed—get it into a heated building if you can,” Holtkamp advises.

He offers producers these other take-home points:

-    Washing, disinfecting and drying trucks/trailers between loads of pigs is still the gold standard. “If you’re doing that today, we’re not suggesting that you stop,” Holtkamp points out. “But when you can’t get that done, the times and temperatures designated in our study provide an alternative.”
-    The first priority is to scrape and sweep the trailer to get out as much organic matter as possible; then apply heat.
-    Heating trailers to 145 F was not effective in killing PEDV; heating to 160 F for 10 minutes was effective. “If you have the ability to bake the trailer, we think that’s a good way to reduce your risk of PEDV,” Holtkamp notes.
-    For producers who have the ability, allowing a trailer to sit idle for seven days at 68 F also is effective at mitigating PEDV exposure.

“Trucks and transport vehicles have to be part of our PEDV biosecurity efforts,” Holtkamp says. “We now know, if a producer faces constraints that keep him from washing and disinfecting trailers, there are alternatives to reduce the risk of transmitting PEDV between groups of pigs.”

To read more about the Iowa State time and temperature trailer study, click here...  To learn more about PEDV, check out Pork Checkoff’s fact sheet here...

Weekly Ethanol Production for 1/24/2014

According to EIA data, ethanol production averaged 900,000 barrels per day (b/d)—or 37.80 million gallons daily. That is down 5,000 b/d from the week before. The four-week average for ethanol production stood at 898,000 b/d for an annualized rate of 13.77 billion gallons.

Stocks of ethanol stood at 16.9 million barrels. That is a 0.5% decrease from last week.

Imports of ethanol were zero b/d for the 17th week in a row.

Gasoline demand for the week averaged 360.5 million gallons daily.

Expressed as a percentage of daily gasoline demand, daily ethanol production was 10.48%.

On the co-products side, ethanol producers were using 13.646 million bushels of corn to produce ethanol and 100,443 metric tons of livestock feed, 89,546 metric tons of which were distillers grains. The rest is comprised of corn gluten feed and corn gluten meal. Additionally, ethanol producers were providing 4.69 million pounds of corn oil daily.

Alltech Feed Survey Reports Slight Increase in Global Feed Production in 2013

Results from the 2014 Global Feed Tonnage Survey released today by Alltech revealed a one percent increase in feed production, with global feed tonnage reporting in at 963 million metric tons, up from 954 million metric tons last year. Alltech assessed the compound feed production of 130 countries in Dec. 2013 through information obtained in partnership with local feed associations and Alltech’s sales team, who visit more than 28,000 feed mills annually.

“We were surprised that the feed industry did not break the one billion metric ton level in 2013, given the continued global growth in the consumption of animal proteins. The slower growth in feed production was likely influenced by a series of droughts that has plagued more than 30 countries worldwide in 2012, which, in turn has driven up the price of raw feed materials and food prices,” said Aidan Connolly, vice president of Alltech and director of Alltech’s annual Global Feed Tonnage Survey. “In our Survey, we recorded that Asia had the highest tonnage and the highest feed prices, averaging around $524 per ton for pig finisher diets and around $480 to $553 for laying hens and broiler finisher diets. With a significant drop in cereal prices during the final months of 2013, our respondents expect the feed prices will be lower in 2014, resulting in a year of recovery and a return to stronger growth in terms of tons of feed produced.”

Among the 130 countries assessed in Alltech’s survey, China was once again the number one country producing feed at 189 million metric tons and an estimated 9,500 feed mills. The United States and Brazil ranked second and third respectively, with the U.S. producing 169 million metric tons from 5,236 feed mills and Brazil generating 67 million metric tons from 1,237 feed mills. There was an observed decline in the number of feed mills in China, likely driven by government policy, which favors a smaller number of larger feedmills to facilitate traceability and improvements in quality, and the continued demand by urban consumers for further processed proteins from larger farms.

In terms of percent growth in comparison to the Dec. 2012 figures, Africa was reaffirmed as the fastest growing region. Countries such as South Africa, Cote d’Ivoire, Senegal, Mauritius and Namibia all experienced production increases, boosting Africa’s combined tonnage seven percent to just short of 31 million metric tons in 2013. Asia, of the six regions surveyed, is once again the leading overall region in terms of production of animal feed, with 348 million metric tons or more than one-third of global feed, but did not grow in 2013. The Middle East is estimated to have the largest feed mills by average tons per year. Globally, feedmills produced an average of 34,000 metric tons.

When analyzed by species:
-    Poultry held its position as the leading consumer of animal feed, with a 46 percent share of global production at 444 million tons, representing a six percent growth over 2012. Sixty percent of all poultry feed tonnage is dedicated to broilers, with the rest fed to egg layers, turkeys, duck and other fowl.
-    Pig feed increased by 11 percent, moving to 243 million metric tons globally.
-    The ruminant feed market, comprising dairy, beef and small ruminants, decreased in tonnage demand between late 2012 and December 2013. These animal sectors have the most alternative feed materials to switch to, including grazing and forages, when grain prices rise.
-    Equine feed tonnage once again increased 14 percent to 12.4 million metric tons, following on a 17 percent increase in 2012.
-    Aquaculture was the star performer again, with a 17 percent increase in 2013 to 34.4 million metric tons.  The Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) trends suggest that global consumption total of farmed fish and shellfish now exceeds beef on a weight basis.
-    Pet food tonnage remained relatively flat from 2012 to 2013, increasing just slightly from 20.5 to 20.7 million tons.

The Survey found that the total value of the feed industry exceeds $500 billion, higher than the previous estimate of $350 billion. This has been fueled by high feed prices but also the more accurate information collected by this survey. With an expected fall in feed prices in 2014, this value of the feed industry will likely not be as high in 2014.

 “This investment in evaluating the world’s feed industry is a part of our ongoing commitment from seed to feed to food in order to satisfy a growing population worldwide,” said Dr. Pearse Lyons, president of Alltech. “With Africa once again named the fastest growing region, we need to be asking ourselves, ‘What if sustainable aquaculture could eradicate poverty and hunger in Africa? What if farm yields in Africa were increased by 20 percent?’”

In 2011, Alltech began to leverage its global presence to obtain a finer estimate of the world’s feed tonnage, an area where production statistics have traditionally been difficult to quantify. This report outlines the third annual assessment that strives to serve as an industry resource for the coming year.

New administration option now available with RespiSure-ONE®

Zoetis is giving swine veterinarians and pork producers another on-label vaccination option by making RespiSure-ONE® available for a two-dose protocol.

With the new label indication, RespiSure-ONE can be administered intramuscularly with a 1 mL injection at processing and a second 1 mL injection at weaning. This vaccination option is in addition to the previously approved one-dose 2 mL injection at processing.

“Providing this flexible dose option demonstrates our commitment to giving veterinarians and producers solutions that fit their needs and help protect pig health,” said Richard Swalla, DVM, Pork Technical Services, Zoetis.

RespiSure-ONE is licensed for the vaccination of healthy swine 1 day of age or older as an aid in reducing chronic pneumonia caused by Mycoplasma hyopneumoniae (M. hyo). M. hyo is a common bacterial pathogen that infects up to 80% of swine around the world.1,2 It can reduce average daily gain and decrease feed efficiency. The bacteria typically transfers from sow to piglet during lactation as well as from older to younger pigs.

With the new administration option, piglets still get vaccinated on day one, which is important because they may be infected with M. hyo during the first three weeks of life.3,4

“You can be confident that your pigs are getting the protection they need against M. hyo whether you decide to administer two doses or one dose of RespiSure-ONE,” Dr. Swalla said.

Pioneer Introduces Two New Sorghum Hybrids

DuPont Pioneer continues its commitment to sorghum growers with the introduction of two new hybrids for 2014:
-    Pioneer® hybrid 86P20 is a 63RM hybrid with strong stress tolerance and early maturity rating.
-    Pioneer hybrid 85P05 has a 68RM rating, with excellent yield under stress and very good performance on the High Plains and in Kansas. This hybrid has above-average stalk lodging scores.

“Global sorghum testing allows Pioneer to develop products like these to meet challenges growers are facing now,” says Doug Pilkington, DuPont Pioneer sorghum marketing manager. “These new hybrids are also the result of our efforts to develop high-yielding solutions for U.S. grain sorghum producers.”

Growers planting Pioneer brand sorghum hybrids recently won four of seven first-place finishes and 12 of the 21 national categories in the 2013 National Sorghum Producers (NSP) Yield and Management Contest. Seven of those growers won national finishes with Pioneer sorghum hybrid 84G62. Growers planting Pioneer sorghum hybrids also captured 63 percent of all state category placements.

Pioneer sorghum research is worldwide in scope, yet focused on local adaptation.  Pioneer has three sorghum research stations in the United States and seven additional stations in sorghum-growing regions around the world. Each station is located in an environment where disease, insect or climatic constraints can be evaluated. Testing occurs in more than 100,000 yield plots at 60 locations in four countries.

The Pioneer sorghum research efforts are led by Dr. Kay Porter, director of sorghum research, from Plainview, Texas. The research program at Plainview focuses on developing hybrids adapted to dryland production areas of the High Plains and western Kansas. The Pioneer station in Manhattan, Kan., develops sorghum hybrids for growers in Nebraska, Kansas, Oklahoma, southern Illinois and eastern Missouri. The Taft, Texas, research station is responsible for developing hybrids for the southern United States and northern Mexico.

NuTech Seed Introduces YieldLeader Precision Placement Tool powered by MyFarms

NuTech Seed®, LLC is launching YieldLeader, a Web-based precision placement tool program powered by MyFarms, to their dealers and customers this season.

MyFarms, a leader in Data-Driven Farming, serves growers and their suppliers by delivering security, accuracy, and convenience.  With the help of their dealer, growers can review, select and place unique NuTech Seed hybrids based on soil type, management practices, diseases and pests, as well as desired agronomic characteristics.  Utilizing this program will help NuTech Seed growers increase their accuracy and efficiency, while ultimately increasing yield potential and adding convenience.

“The YieldLeader placement tool allows our growers to better use the field data they have collected over the years, combine it with all the great genetics and choices that NuTech offers, and use this information to make better decisions on their hybrid placement,” says Gene Kassmeyer, director of products for NuTech Seed.  “Growers can use this tool and technology to get suggestions on hybrids in minutes rather than hours. Time is valuable to farmers and every minute counts.”

“With ever increasing access to new technologies and devices, having a program for farmers to access anywhere will be more important down the road,” says Tim Elliott, general manager for NuTech Seed.  “The YieldLeader precision placement tool allows our dealers and growers to access their farm data from just about anywhere, at any time, as well as record notes about their day-to-day operations.”

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