Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Monday June 13 Ag News


For the week ending June 12, 2022, there were 4.5 days suitable for fieldwork, according to the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service. Topsoil moisture supplies rated 9% very short, 24% short, 65% adequate, and 2% surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies rated 13% very short, 30% short, 56% adequate, and 1% surplus.

Field Crops Report:

Corn condition rated 3% very poor, 9% poor, 23% fair, 52% good, and 13% excellent. Corn emerged was 92%, behind 98% last year, and near 95% for the five-year average.

Soybean condition rated 3% very poor, 7% poor, 21% fair, 57% good, and 12% excellent. Soybeans emerged was 89%, near 90% last year and 85% average.

Winter wheat condition rated 19% very poor, 18% poor, 34% fair, 25% good, and 4% excellent. Winter wheat headed was 87%, near 91% last year, and equal to average.

Sorghum condition rated 1% very poor, 11% poor, 30% fair, 55% good, and 3% excellent. Sorghum planted was 90%, ahead of 85% last year, and near 86% average.

Oats condition rated 11% very poor, 14% poor, 20% fair, 45% good, and 10% excellent. Oats headed was 40%, well behind 68% last year and 60% average.

Dry edible beans planted was 66%, near 70% last year, but ahead of 48% average. Emerged was 26%, behind 41% last year, but near 22% average.

Pasture and Range Report:

Pasture and range conditions rated 10% very poor, 15% poor, 31% fair, 39% good, and 5% excellent.


Scattered rainfall and some hail combined with mild temperatures resulted in 3.9 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending June 12, 2022, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Fieldwork activities included cutting hay and grass, and less wind allowed more chemical applications.

Topsoil moisture conditions rated 2 percent very short, 9 percent short, 79 percent adequate and 10 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture conditions rated 3 percent very short, 16 percent short, 75 percent adequate and 6 percent surplus.

Row crop planting was virtually complete. There were reports of recent weather issues making corn or soybean replant necessary for some producers.

Corn emergence reached 95 percent, 1 week behind last year but 1 day ahead of the 5-year average. Corn condition rating remained 86 percent good to excellent. Ninety-seven percent of soybeans have been planted, 8 days behind last year but 4 days ahead of the 5-year average.

Eighty-four percent of soybeans have emerged, 1 week behind last year but 2 days ahead of average. Iowa’s soybean condition rated 82 percent good to excellent.

Thirty-eight percent of the oat crop has headed, 5 days behind last year. Iowa’s oat condition rated 82 percent good to excellent.

Fifty-nine percent of the State’s first cutting of alfalfa hay has been completed, 6 days behind last year. All Hay condition rated 71 percent good to excellent. Pasture condition rated 65 percent good to excellent.

There was a report of an increase in the fly population affecting livestock.

USDA Crop Progress Report: Crop Conditions Up From Last Year

Following a slow start this spring, both corn and soybean planting had caught up to the five-year average by the end of last week, USDA NASS said in its weekly Crop Progress report Monday. Corn emergence was also near normal, while soybean emergence was slightly behind average.


-- Planting progress: 97% nationwide as of Sunday, June 12, up 3 percentage points from the previous week and now even with the five-year average of 97%.
-- Crop development: 88% of corn was emerged nationwide as of Sunday, up 10 percentage points from the previous week and near the five-year average of 89%.
-- Crop condition: 72% of corn was rated in good-to-excellent condition, down 1 percentage point from 73% the previous week but up from 68% a year ago.


-- Planting progress: 88% nationwide as of Sunday, up 10 percentage points from the previous week, and now also equal to the five-year average.
-- Crop development: 70% of soybeans had emerged nationwide as of Sunday, 4 percentage points behind the five-year average of 74%.
-- Crop condition: In its first condition report of the season for soybeans, NASS rated the crop as 70% good to excellent, up from 62% at this time a year ago.


-- Crop development: 86% of the winter wheat crop was headed nationwide as of Sunday, 4 percentage points behind the five-year average of 90%.
-- Harvest progress: 10% of winter wheat was harvested as of Sunday, ahead of 5% last year, but 2 percentage points behind the five-year average of 12%.
-- Crop condition: 31% of winter wheat was rated good to excellent, up 1 percentage point from the previous week and now even with conditions in 2013 but 17 percentage points behind last year's rating at this time of 48% good to excellent.


-- Planting progress: 94% of the spring wheat crop was planted as of Sunday, up 12 percentage points from the previous week, but down 5 percentage points from the five-year average.
-- Crop development: 72% of spring wheat was emerged, 21 percentage points behind the five-year average of 93%.
-- Crop condition: In its first condition rating of the season for spring wheat, NASS pegged the crop's condition at 54% good to excellent, up from 37% a year ago, but with wide variation among the six states reporting.


Epperly Wins 2022 World Livestock Auctioneer Championship

Will Epperly, from Dunlap, Iowa, was named the 2022 World Livestock Auctioneer Champion at the 58th annual competition held at Shipshewana Auction & Trading Place, Shipshewana, Ind., and presented by the Livestock Marketing Association (LMA).

“It was such a powerful moment,” Epperly said. “I thought to myself, ‘this can’t be real,’ and the emotions that came over me were a flood. It was joy, excitement and nervousness for the year to come, but I hope to represent everyone and the Livestock Marketing Association very well.”
This was Epperly’s 12th year competing at a WLAC-affiliated event. He earned his spot to compete in this year’s competition by winning Runner-Up honors at LMA’s 2022 Midwestern Qualifying event. Thirty other contestants also qualified through three regional qualifying events.

Justin Dodson of Welch, Okla., earned Reserve Champion honors, and Jacob Massey from Petersburg, Tenn., was named Runner-Up Champion.

Other top ten finalists were Eric Drees, Caldwell, Idaho; Dean Edge, Rimbey, Alberta; Steve Goedert, Dillon, Mont.; Wade Leist, Boyne City, Mich.; Sixto Paiz, Portales, N.M.; Jake Parnell, Sacramento, Calif. (High Score Interview); Barrett Simon, Rosalia, Kan. (Rookie of the Year).

Additional semi-finalists were Zach Ballard, Presho, S.D.; Andy Baumeister, Goldthwaite, Texas; Neil Bouray, Webber, Kan.; Brandon Frey, Diagonal, Iowa; Joshua Garcia, Goliad, Texas; Philip Gilstrap, Pendleton, S.C.; Brandon Hamel, Natoma, Kan.; Michael Imbrogno, Turlock, Calif.; Marcus Kent, Dunnellon, Fla.; Lynn Langvardt, Chapman, Kan.; Kyle Layman, North Platte, Neb.; Justin Mebane, Bakersfield, Calif.; Daniel Mitchell, Cumberland, Ohio; Ross Parks, New Concord, Ohio; Chris Pinard, Swainsboro, Ga.; Jack Riggs, Glenns Ferry, Idaho; Jeff Showalter, Broadway, Va.; Dustin Smith, Jay, Okla.; Andrew Sylvester, Wamego, Kan.; Curtis Wetovick, Fullerton, Neb.; and Tim Yoder, Montezuma, Ga.

Kristen Parman, LMA VP of Membership Services, said, “LMA is proud to sponsor an event that brings together North America’s top livestock auctioneers in a competition that showcases professionalism and promotes the auction method of selling livestock.”
As the new champion, Epperly will spend the next year traveling the country, sharing his auctioneering skills with other livestock auction markets and acting as a spokesperson on behalf of the livestock marketing industry and LMA.

“I look forward to meeting new people, getting to travel the country, getting to see different markets and how they run around the United States,” Epperly said. “The greatest part of it is the opportunity to represent them and the industry we serve.”
 Epperly, a self-taught livestock auctioneer, works for Dunlap Livestock Auction in Dunlap, Iowa, and West Point Livestock Auction, Inc. in West Point, Neb. He lives in Dunlap, Iowa, with his wife, Ally, and son, Zeke.
A one-hour highlight show from the 2022 competition will air on RFD-TV June 30, with starting times based on local listings.

Soybean Gall Midge Emergence Update


First adult emergence was reported near Pilger (Stanton County) today in Northeast, NE as well as some new locations in east-central Nebraska over the past few days:
-          Saunders County near Mead, NE on June 9th
-          Otoe County near Syracuse, NE on June 11th
-          Saunders County near Memphis on June 12th
-          Sarpy County near Springfield, NE on June 12th
-          Cass County near Weeping Water on June 13th

No emergence has been reported in Iowa, Minnesota or South Dakota.  To see the full map of soybean gall midge emergence, go to soybeangallmidge.org.


– Jerry Volesky, NE Extension

While generally not as problematic in Nebraska compared to other western states, poisonous plants can exact their toll on livestock enterprises, and many times the losses are unrecognized.

There are 17 species listed as primary toxic plants that can be found in Nebraska.  Toxic plants contain or produce substances injurious or lethal to animals.  The amount of plant material consumed by the grazing animal before death or poisoning symptoms appear, does vary by species.  Poisoning symptoms will vary depending on the toxic compound in the plant, but may include difficulty breathing, excess salivation, nervousness, or staggering.  Many poisonous plants are avoided by the animal, but a scarcity of forage, such as under drought conditions may lead to a situation where they are consumed.

There are some species, such as prairie larkspur, where grazing animals may select for them when they are flowering (mid-June to early July).  Other relatively common poisonous plants in central and western Nebraska include Riddell groundsel, Lambert crazyweed, wooly locoweed, and chokecherry.

Poison hemlock and spotted water hemlock are common statewide.  These two species prefer moist areas in pastures, creek banks, ditches, and disturbed sites.

If you suspect a poisonous plant problem in your pastures, be sure to get a positive identification of the plant.  When control or removal of the plants is not possible, it may be best to move livestock to a different pasture.

Nebraska Extension does have a great resource called Nebraska Plants Toxic to Livestock (EC3037) https://extensionpublications.unl.edu/assets/pdf/ec3037.pdf that can be found online or obtained through your local Extension office.

State departments of agriculture celebrate supply chain success with passage of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act

The National Association of State Departments of Agriculture CEO Ted McKinney issued the following statement in response to the U.S. Senate’s passage of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act.
“Undue burden to our food system and supply chain has been lessened today with the passage of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act, which maintains fair ocean carrier practices. Today’s actions couldn’t have come at a more needed time for the United States and the world as changes from the Ocean Shipping Reform Act will enable more U.S. agricultural products to reach the global marketplace,” McKinney said.
“NASDA also thanks Congress for working together in a bipartisan fashion to swiftly pass and provide solutions through the Ocean Shipping Reform Act.”

USMEF Statement on Passage of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act

Today the House of Representatives passed S.3580, advancing the Ocean Shipping Reform Act for President Biden’s approval.

U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) President and CEO Dan Halstrom issued this statement:

USMEF thanks both houses of Congress for their strong bipartisan support of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act, and we look forward to final approval by President Biden. In these times of rising input costs, it has never been more important to maximize the value of our agricultural products, and the best way to do that is to ensure access to the international marketplace. This legislation takes important steps forward in improving the shipping services available to U.S. exporters.

AFBF Applauds Final Passage of Ocean Shipping Reform Act

American Farm Bureau Federation President Zippy Duvall commented today on final congressional passage of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act.

“AFBF appreciates lawmakers for working together to pass the Ocean Shipping Reform Act. Record-high shipping costs and delayed access to containers have worsened supply chain issues and limited exports at a time when the world is calling on America’s farmers to meet growing demand. Some estimates suggest we’ve lost out on more than $25 billion in agricultural exports over the past six months because of ocean shipping constraints. That’s unacceptable. Limited trade has also made it more difficult to import supplies like fertilizer, which increases costs to farmers and ultimately hurts all families through higher grocery bills.

“I was pleased to team up with President Biden to urge passage and look forward to him quickly signing the Ocean Shipping Reform Act into law so farmers and ranchers can continue to meet the needs of families in America and overseas.”

Ocean Shipping Reform Act to become law

More than 2 ½ years ago, the Specialty Soya and Grains Alliance was one of the first agricultural associations to sound the alarm on the crisis taking place in container shipping. Finally, some relief is in sight, as the Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022 is heading to President Biden’s desk. On Monday, U.S. House of Representatives overwhelmingly passed the Senate version of the bill, 369-42.

The House first passed a version of the bill in December, and the Senate passed its version by unanimous consent on March 31. Rather than reconcile the two bills by conference committee, the House opted to pass the Senate version.

SSGA acknowledges the bill’s sponsors, Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and John Thune (R-S.D.), and Reps. John Garamendi (D-Calif.) and Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.) for their bipartisan efforts in getting through a bill that would provide the Federal Maritime Commission with new, additional enforcement authority. It also will ensure a more competitive global ocean shipping industry and provide relief to U.S. exporters, including SSGA-member agricultural exporters, who have struggled with significant supply chain disruptions over the past two years.

“We applaud the work that’s been done so far,” SSGA Executive Director Eric Wenberg said. “We’ve used our expertise in intermodal shipping to inform and educate the debate and will continue to do so. With three of the four congressional sponsors being from South Dakota and Minnesota, we trust that the message is clear and that the final rule, when it emerges, will support agricultural shippers from the central United States.”

Once signed, the law also would provide additional enforcement tools to address unreasonable and unfair ocean carrier practices that have been harmful to U.S. exporters, including prohibiting carriers from unreasonably declining opportunities to U.S. exports.

On Tuesday, SSGA will hold its quarterly board meeting in Tacoma, Washington, prior to the annual meeting of the Agriculture Transportation Coalition’s annual meeting where senators and representatives who sponsored the Ocean Shipping Reform Act are scheduled to appear.

SSGA has long supported passage of the Ocean Shipping Reform Act and has worked since October 2020 to inform the general public about the supply chain crisis, working on behalf of its members who export high-quality, Identity Preserved and specialty grains and oilseeds to help them meet the needs of their overseas customers.

Lack of service, carrier cancelations, delays and rising freight rates and fees have “reached a condition critical situation,” according to SSGA Chairman Rob Prather, chief strategic ambassador for Iowa-based Global Processing, affected business and have had a human toll, as well, causing hardships to logistics staffs, farmers, truckers, suppliers and customers both in the U.S. and abroad.

ACE Introduces Carbon Intensity Calculator to Showcase Ethanol’s Ability to Reach Net-Zero and Net-Negative GHGs

The American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) has introduced a new carbon intensity (CI) calculator to help its members understand the carbon intensity (CI) of their farms and ethanol operations along with  a simplified version of the tool to raise awareness about  factors impacting the CI of ethanol. Combined, these tools help illustrate corn ethanol’s ability to attain net-zero and net-negative greenhouse gas emissions.

The topic of carbon intensity can generate confusion because various regulatory bodies (EPA, CARB, etc.) apply different approaches to derive carbon scores. What’s more, some regulatory bodies use outdated lifecycle factors to overstate ethanol’s CI, causing understandable apprehension from producers about new clean fuel policies. ACE’s detailed calculator allows users to break through this confusion by using their own corn farming and ethanol production information to estimate a carbon score and compare it to the Argonne National Laboratory’s GREET model and average scores used by the California Low Carbon Fuel Standard.

"When I first looked at the GREET model's ‘Midwest average’ carbon intensity for corn production, I immediately saw the potential for rapid reductions with more accurate modeling that reflected actual climate-smart production practices being employed by tens of thousands of farmers across the Midwest,” said Ron Alverson, Calculator Creator, Farmer, Dakota Ethanol and ACE Board Member. “The CI calculator we developed at ACE is a tool for farmers and ethanol producers to see for themselves what their potential is to lower their carbon score.”

“ACE is focused on highlighting how climate-smart farming practices, efficiencies at ethanol plants, and the capture and sequestration of CO2 from facilities puts ethanol on a trajectory to reach both net-zero and net-negative emissions; a trajectory unique to ethanol,” said Brian Jennings, ACE CEO. “The calculator is not only useful for farmers and ethanol producers who want to know their CI score, it also helps ACE highlight the need for farm-level practices to receive carbon benefits in clean fuel markets.”

Clean Fuels Applauds Chevron on the Completion of Its Acquisition of REG

Earlier today, Clean Fuels Alliance America CEO Donnell Rehagen welcomed news that Chevron Corp. has finalized its acquisition of Renewable Energy Group, a longtime Clean Fuels Alliance America member. As the acquisition is finalized, Chad Stone of REG will continue to lead the Clean Fuels Governing Board as chair.

“This is a meaningful acquisition for our industry and for Clean Fuels for many reasons,” said Rehagen, who noted that Iowa-based REG has been an association member since 2006. “REG has been a leader in our industry from its inception, being one of the very first companies to build a biodiesel plant in the United States. This leadership in renewable fuels, coupled with the history and strength in the energy sector Chevron brings, will continue to build on the momentum our industry is experiencing as the country continues on its path of carbon reduction through cleaner fuels.”

With 11 biorefineries in the U.S. and Europe and more than half a billion gallons of production of biodiesel and renewable diesel, REG is also one of Clean Fuels’ largest members in terms of fuel production.

California-based Chevron has steadily grown its clean fuels business, actively marketing its Renewable Diesel Blend at the pump in California. REG will remain headquartered in Ames, Iowa, and the team will focus on growing Chevron’s portfolio of lower carbon fuels and feedstocks. The combined company is committed to harnessing complementary cultures and proven track records of developing innovative technologies to grow its renewable fuels production capacity to 100,000 barrels per day by 2030.

Stone, who joined the Clean Fuels board in 2015, said he was pleased to continue as board chair during this dynamic time both for REG and Clean Fuels.

“We have been working together for decades to build this industry and never before have we seen such interest or investment in our fuels,” said Stone, who serves as senior vice president of commercial performance at REG. “I am excited to see what the future holds as we join forces to provide fuel solutions that meet the growing demand we’re seeing in the marketplace.”

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