Thursday, July 3, 2014

Thursday July 3 Ag News

Ibach, Loos to speak at Nebraska Manure Demo Day

Agriculture advocate and radio personality Trent Loos along with Greg Ibach, the director of Agriculture in Nebraska will be the keynote speakers at Manure Demonstration Day on July 29th during the luncheon.  Both men are strong advocates for agriculture and will each provide a unique perspective.  Organizers are taking registrations for the FREE meal. Register today at

Trent Loos, who farms with his family near Loup City, is a sixth generation farmer with a passion for agriculture.  Loos Tales, Trent’s radio show, launched in 2001 and in 2008, he was recognized as the “Voice of Rural America” by the West Quest organization for his ground-breaking work in advocating for agriculture and speaking on behalf of farmers and ranchers.  Trent also writes a blog named “Truth Be Told” at

“We are excited to have both Trent Loos and Greg Ibach as speakers for a luncheon at Manure Demo Day.  Both men will entertain, educate and inspire our guests.” Said  Leslie Johnson, UNL Extension. 

University of Nebraska Extension with support of many Agri-Business groups and Nebraska Commodity organizations are working together to present Nebraska Manure Demonstration Day.  Numerous educational presentations and demonstrations are planned throughout the day.  There will be two educational tracks: #1 “Managing What We Can’t See in Manure”, and #2 “Connecting Manure and Fields”. Guests will be able to choose presentations that best fit their needs.  

Livestock producers, custom applicators, consultants and others interested in learning more about the efficient utilization of manure are encouraged to attend this free event.  The 2014 Nebraska Manure Demonstration Day will be held at the Dawson County Fairgrounds on July 29th from 8:30am to 5pm.  

The event will focus on the needs of the manure industry in Nebraska.  Participants can view demonstrations of the latest manure handling equipment and will have the opportunity to learn from experts about new developments in manure management and handling. Educational topics include, PEDV, mortality composting, composted manures, using manure on crops, and soil health following manure application. 

Educational events will include opportunities for CCA Credits and NDEQ Land Application Training Recertification.

For more information about the 2014 Nebraska Manure Demonstration Day and to register for the free noon meal visit  

Damage to Corn Plants by Strong Winds

R.L. (Bob) Nielsen, Agronomy Dept., Purdue University

Storms packing strong winds have rolled through several areas of the corn belt several time already this growing season. Recent storms, in particular, caused quite a bit of damage to the corn crop in some fields. The damage includes minor leaning or bending of plants, outright uprooting of plants (root lodging), and the so-called "green snap" phenomenon where stalks literally break off or snap above a stalk node (often below the harvestable ear).

The crop is particularly vulnerable to such damage from strong winds when it is in the latter stages of the rapid growth phase prior to pollination, wherein overall plant and root dry matter increases rapidly but more importantly, stalk internode elongation occurs very rapidly. Rapid elongation of the stalk internodes (the tissue between the stalk nodes or "joints") often outpaces the lignification of the same tissue. The development of lignins provide the structural strength to the stalk.

Assessing the damage and predicting the eventual effect on grain yield from such damage can be challenging. The one certain advice that can be given is that such assessment should not be done the day after the storm. Rather, you should wait at least 4 to 5 days to allow the damaged plants to demonstrate whether or not they will recover.

-    Simple leaning or bending of plants caused by strong winds represents the least of the damage. Such plants should recover most, if not all, of their uprightness AND if this recovery occurs prior to pollination, there should be little effect on the success of pollination. However, if the damage occurred near the onset of pollen shed and silking, then there may be some "shading" of the exposed silks (relative to pollen capture) by the leaves and stalks of neighboring lodged plants and pollination may not occur successfully.

-    Plants that are root-lodged often recover by "goose necking" or gradually returning to uprightness, as demonstrated two years when similar strong storms caused wide areas of uprooted plants. Much like the assessment of plants that are simply leaning from wind, if the "goose necking" of root-lodged plants does not occur before the onset of pollen shed and silking, then there may be some "shading" of the exposed silks by the leaves and stalks of neighboring lodged plants and pollination may not occur successfully.

-    The likelihood that "green snapped" plants will recover is obviously low. Plants snapped off below the harvestable ear clearly represent direct loss of yield potential, but plants snapped off above the harvestable ear may yet produce grain, albeit less than desired. Because such reduction in harvestable plant population occurs so "late in the game", there is less opportunity for compensation by neighboring plants and so the estimated yield loss will be approximately equal to the percent of green-snapped plants.

Flood Waters Impacting Upper Mississippi Locks and Dams

(from ASA)

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers was expecting rising flood waters to make 11 locks and dams impassable on the mid- and upper-Mississippi River and force the closure of the river from Bellevue, Iowa, to Saverton, Mo.

At least 80 barge tows are expected to be affected by the closure, which would be the most extensive on that portion of the River since 2008. Rains caused extensive flooding last week in parts of Minnesota, Iowa and the Dakotas. The rising waters prompted lock closures in Minneapolis and St. Paul, which prevented barges from being loaded and slowed the transportation of grain and other commodities.

Informa Corn, Soybean Production Estimates Smaller Than USDA Forecasts

Private analytical firm Informa Economics said U.S. farmers have the potential to produce a 13.7 billion bushel corn crop and a 3.7 bb soybean crop this year.

The national average corn yield is forecast at 165 bushels per acre, 1.6 bpa above its previous estimate, and a soybean yield of 44.5 bpa, even with its last forecast. Both are slightly below USDA's estimates.

Informa adjusted USDA's acreage figures using data from its own survey of farmers. It thinks farmers planted corn on 91.39 million acres with harvested acres projected at 83.24 ma.  The corn harvested acreage estimate is 600,000 less than USDA's with the difference stemming from a 250,000 acre reduction in planting and 350,000 acres abandoned due to excessive moisture.

Farmers are likely to harvest 83.23 ma of soybeans, Informa said, 830,000 less than USDA's June estimate with the reductions coming from fewer planted and harvested acres in Ohio, Michigan, Louisiana, Illinois and South Dakota. Informa sees abandonment increasing in Minnesota, Iowa and North Dakota.

The firm's global forecasts included a few changes. Informa increased Brazilian corn production to 76.5 million metric tons, which is 2.5 mmt above USDA's estimate and "suggests that USDA may increase its world corn production estimate in the July 11 WASDE report."

USDA's World Agricultural Outlook Board will release its initial projections of U.S. production in its next report on July 11 at 11am CDT. USDA will also update supply and demand tables in its upcoming report to include the recent Grain Stocks report, which indicated larger corn and soybean supplies on hand than previously thought.

USDA Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden to travel to China

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced today that Deputy Secretary Krysta Harden will travel to Beijing and Guangzhou, China, July 7-12.

While in China, the deputy secretary will lead the USDA delegation at the U.S.–China Strategic and Economic Dialogue. The Dialogue will bring together high level officials and discuss the challenges and opportunities that both countries face on a wide range of bilateral, regional and global areas of immediate and long-term economic and strategic interest. The U.S. delegation will be led by Secretary of State John Kerry and Secretary of the Treasury Jacob Lew.

Along with participating in the Strategic and Economic Dialogue, Harden will have additional meetings with high level Chinese officials while in Beijing. In Guangzhou, she will meet with Chinese importers of American agricultural products and visit facilities that handle American products, including a soybean crushing facility and a denim factory.

USDA Dairy Products May 2014 Production Highlights

Total cheese output (excluding cottage cheese) was 965 million pounds, 2.2 percent above May 2013 and 1.3 percent above April 2014.  Italian type cheese production totaled 414 million pounds, 5.1 percent above May 2013 but 0.4 percent below April 2014.  American type cheese production totaled 391 million pounds, 1.0 percent above May 2013 and 3.9 percent above April 2014.  Butter production was 165 million pounds, 0.5 percent above May 2013 but 0.7 percent below April 2014.

Dry milk powders (comparisons with May 2013)
Nonfat dry milk, human - 164 million pounds, up 8.7 percent.
Skim milk powders - 58.2 million pounds, up 6.2 percent.

Whey products (comparisons with May 2013)
Dry whey, total - 81.3 million pounds, up 2.0 percent.
Lactose, human and animal - 97.3 million pounds, up 11.6 percent.
Whey protein concentrate, total - 48.2 million pounds, up 11.1 percent.

Frozen products (comparisons with May 2013)
Ice cream, regular (hard) - 69.9 million gallons, down 8.9 percent.
Ice cream, lowfat (total) - 39.2 million gallons, down 7.8 percent.
Sherbet (hard) - 3.62 million gallons, down 21.6 percent.
Frozen yogurt (total) - 6.52 million gallons, down 25.6 percent.

Dairy Cattle Entries Now Open for World Dairy Expo 

World Dairy Expo’s 2014 dairy cattle entries are now open. Exhibitors can choose to enter through the Expo online entry system or by mail. Initial entry deadline is Sunday, Aug. 31, 2014. Premium Books were mailed to recent year’s exhibitors July 1. The Premium Book is also available online or new exhibitors can request a copy from World Dairy Expo at 608-224-6455. Visit for complete event details.

Dairy cattle exhibitors are encouraged to utilize the user-friendly Expo online entry system that contains the 2014 Premium Book and all entry forms. Exhibitors utilizing the online system can submit all animal entries, stalling requests, tent and/or booth space purchases and Futurity entries. Additionally, youth showmanship and fitting contest entries and judge nominations can also be submitted.

Entries must be submitted and payment transaction completed by Aug. 31, 2014. The online entry system will be available and credit card payment accepted for late entries until 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Sept. 14, 2014. Late fees will be assessed for entries submitted between Aug. 31 and Sept. 14.

Exhibitors should to be prepared to enter animal’s name, registration number, 15-digit Animal Identification Number (AIN) or Canadian Cattle Identification Agency Number (CCIA) and pedigree information. Exhibitors will be able to refer back to their entries after payment. Exhibitors are encouraged to review the 2014 Premium Book, especially Page 71, which includes changes for this year’s show.

World Dairy Expo is recognized as the meeting place for the global dairy industry. More than 70,000 dairy producers and industry experts from 90 countries travel to Madison, Wis. annually. The world-class event includes 2,500 head of North American dairy cattle competing on the famed colored shavings, more than 850 exhibiting companies in the renowned trade show, Expo Seminars, Virtual Farm Tours and exciting youth competitions. World Dairy Expo’s theme is “Designer Dairy” and will be held Sept. 30 through Oct. 4, 2014. Visit, follow us on Facebook or Twitter @WDExpo or #WDE14 for more information.

It’s Time to Visit Nebraska’s County Fairs

Governor Dave Heineman
Summer is a great time to visit fairs and festivals held across our state. Nebraska’s county fairs offer a wonderful opportunity to showcase the best of our state and highlight the agricultural heritage, achievements and talents of Nebraska producers, youth and hobbyists.

Nebraska is home to nearly 90 county fairs that offer a variety of experiences and traditions for families that feature livestock show competitions, demolition derbies and championship rodeo competitions. No matter what your age, there is something for everyone at the county fair, which includes the diverse culture that makes Nebraska unique.

I have visited many county fairs and the thing that stands out the most about the county fairs I have attended is the participation from our 4-H and FFA youth.  Each year, 4-H provides our young people the opportunity to gain important life skills that help them become productive, capable, responsible and compassionate individuals. In Nebraska, one in three age-eligible youth in all 93 counties participate in 4-H programs - that is over 140,000 young people. By participating in 4-H, our young people gain skills in science, explore career choices, learn about healthy behaviors and understand the importance of agriculture in our state.

Our FFA youth are no different. There are over 6,600 FFA members participating in 157 FFA chapters across the state, including 8 new chapters for the 2014-2015 school year.  Through their involvement in FFA, these young people are truly following the FFA motto of learning to do, doing to learn, earning to live and living to serve.

I continue to be impressed with the youth of our state. For those participating in county fair events, their determination, dedication and drive learned through fair projects is superb. Young people work on and share projects in a wide range of interests, from rocketry, technology, wildlife, photography, woodworking, and more. Thousands of others invest significant time and energy in learning to care for livestock.

County fairs offer our young people the opportunity to showcase their achievements of the past year, while also offering fairgoers an opportunity to experience family friendly entertainment – from tractor pulls, to pie-baking contests, concerts and musical performances.

If it’s your first visit to a fair, or whether you are a regular participant, I encourage you and your family to visit one of Nebraska’s county fairs and festivals this year. A listing is available online from the Nebraska Association of Fair Managers at

The more than one million people who attend Nebraska’s fairs and festivals each year can attest to the quality of life Nebraska has to offer. Our county fairs and festivals are an opportunity to experience the traditions and culture that make Nebraska a great place to live, work and raise a family.

USDA Support Keeps Old Glory Flying High

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack

What began as a small sail-making shop in 19th century New York City has evolved into the modern realization of one family’s American Dream—a family-owned and –operated small business whose product has been a part of some of the most iconic images in our nation’s history.

Alexander Annin’s sail-making shop, established in the 1820s, has evolved into the oldest and largest flag company in the United States and is still in operation today. Commencing with Zachary Taylor’s 1849 presidential inauguration; to the flag-draped coffin of President Abraham Lincoln in 1865; onward to the iconic image of U.S. Marines hoisting the flag on Iwo Jima’s Mount Suribachi in 1945; to the flag planted by Neil Armstrong and Buzz Aldrin on the moon in 1969—all were Annin-made flags.

Today, Annin Flagmakers is still family-owned and fiercely committed to using only U.S. labor and materials to produce an average of 35,000 flags each week. From start to finish, Annin flag makers oversee every stitch in more than 15 million flags every year.

In recent years, USDA Rural Development has helped this small business continue to grow and thrive through support from our Business and Industry loan program. The company used the funds to purchase, renovate and expand its manufacturing facility in rural Coshocton, Ohio which today employs approximately 225 proud Ohioans.

Most recently, Annin Flagmakers donated labor and materials to help restore the National 9/11 Flag, destroyed in the aftermath of the September 11 attacks on the World Trade Center. This flag, which has traveled the breadth of the United States and has been stitched upon by hundreds of American hands, also integrates thread from the original Star Spangled Banner that flew over Fort McHenry during the War of 1812.

As we celebrate American independence this weekend with family, friends, feasting and fireworks, let us also remember the brave men and women across the centuries whose commitment to duty was so deep that they gave their own lives to protect others. The American flag stands as a proud symbol of their sacrifice, and reminds us of our many blessings. Because of them, each and every one of us is able to pursue the opportunity for life, liberty, and our own personal American Dream.

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