Sunday, August 8, 2021

Friday August 6 Ag News


Nebraska's farm real estate value, a measurement of the value of all land and buildings on farms, increased from 2020, according to USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service. Farm real estate value for 2021 averaged $3,100 per acre, up $310 per acre (up 11%) from last year.

Cropland value increased 14% from last year to $4,960 per acre. Dryland cropland value averaged $3,990 per acre, $530 higher than last year. Irrigated cropland value averaged $6,530 per acre, $710 above a year ago. Pastureland, at $1,080 per acre, was $40 higher than the previous year.

Cash rents paid to landlords in 2021 for cropland increased from last year. Irrigated cropland rent averaged $244 per acre, $4 above last year. Dryland cropland rent averaged $152 per acre, $3 higher than a year earlier. Pasture rented for cash averaged $25 per acre, $1 above the previous year.

County level averages of 2021 cash rents paid to landlords will be released on August 27, 2021 and will be available through NASS Quick Stats, located at


 Iowa’s farm real estate value, a measurement of the value of all land and buildings on farms, averaged $7,740 per acre in 2021, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service – Land Values 2021 Summary. This is up $670 per acre, 9% above last year’s value.

Cropland, at $7,810 per acre, was up $640 from last year. Pasture, at $3,020 per acre, was up $330 from last year.

Cropland cash rent paid to Iowa landlords in 2021 averaged $233.00 per acre according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Non-irrigated cropland rent averaged $233.00 per acre, up $3.00 from last year. Irrigated cropland rent averaged $229.00 per acre, down $9.00 from 2020. Pasture rented for cash averaged $58.00 per acre, up $4.00 from the previous year.

USDA Agricultural Land Values Highlights

The United States farm real estate value, a measurement of the value of all land and buildings on farms, averaged $3,380 per acre for 2021, up $220 per acre (7.0 percent) from 2020. The United States cropland value averaged $4,420 per acre, an increase of $320 per acre (7.8 percent) from the previous year. The United States pasture value averaged $1,480 per acre, an increase of $80 per acre (5.7 percent) from 2020.

NE Soybean Board and NE Extension Invite You to the 2021 Soybean Mgt Field Days

See your checkoff dollars at work and get best practices you can implement in your fields.  Plan to attend 2021 Soybean Management Field Days next week:
    Tuesday, 8/10: Jerome Fritz Farm (WILCOX)
    Wednesday, 8/11: Kevin Dinslage Farm (ELGIN)
    Thursday, 8/12: Bart & Geoff Ruth Farm (RISING CITY)
    Friday, 8/13: Mike Fuchs Farm (ARLINGTON)

Brought to you by the Nebraska Soybean Board and Nebraska Extension, the field days begin with 9 a.m. registration and conclude at 2:30 p.m. Free registration is available the day of the event.   

Learn how to profitably apply the products of technology and research at the farm level.  This educational event is for you - the soybean grower and agronomic representatives supporting the soybean industry.  Soybean Management Field Days will address issues important to farmers in our state and on an international level, while also providing the opportunity to learn about the various Nebraska Soybean Board research, marketing, and education efforts.

Experts will share their knowledge and experiences as they relate to soybean production, marketing and management including:

Grain Marketing & Cropland Cash Rental Rates in 2021
Jeff Peterson, President, Heartland Farm Partners
Jim Jansen, Nebraska Extension Agricultural Economist
    Understanding Soybean Markets
    Pricing Decisions and Opportunities
    Trends in Current Nebraska Cropland Rental Rates
    Determining Equitable Rents with Marketing Uncertainty

Strategies for Soybean Gall Midge and Insect/Disease Management in Cover Crops
Justin McMechan, University of Nebraska Crop Protection & Cropping Systems Specialist    
Tom Hunt, Nebraska Extension Entomologist
Robert Wright, Nebraska Extension Entomologist
Tamra Jackson-Ziems, Nebraska Extension Plant Pathologist
Asha Mane, University of Nebraska Graduate Student
    Soybean Gall Midge: Research Updates on a New Pest of Soybean
    Insect Management in Cover Crop Systems
    Fungicide Resistance in Frogeye Leafspot

Discussing Interseeding Cover Crops in Soybean:
Evaluating Soybean Variety, Cover Crop Planting,
Herbicide Placement and Weed Management
Chris Proctor, Nebraska Weed Management Extension Educator
and Local Nebraska Extension Educators
    Interseeding Cover Crops in Soybeans
    Weed Management in Soybeans

Soybean Production & Cover Crops –Water Use,
Planting Rates, Row Spacing, Planting Dates,
Maturity Groups, and Irrigation Management
Jim Specht, UNL Emeritus Professor of Agronomy and Horticulture
Aaron Nygren, Nebraska Extension Educator, Cropping Systems
Steve Melvin, Nebraska Extension Educator, Cropping Systems
    Spring Sunlight & Water - Split Use by Cover  & Cash Crop
    Row Width & Seeding Rate - 2020 SMFD Trial Results
    Matching Varietal Maturity Group (MG) with Plant Date
    Gain Knowledge About Irrigation Management with vs. Without Cover Crops
    Learn Differences in Managing Cover Crops in Irrigated vs. Rainfed Systems

For more information about the field days and maps to sites, visit, or contact the Nebraska Soybean Board at (402) 441-3240 or Nebraska Extension at (402) 624-8030.

NeCGA Born for the Field summer membership drive

This summer the Nebraska Corn Growers Association (NeCGA) is asking growers across the state, are you Born for the Field?  There are a lot of similarities between the baseball season and the growing season. Farmers and baseball players prepare in the spring and work hard all summer long to be in the fields in October. This summer, as members are out and about at events across the state, we want them to be asking their friends and neighbors if they are Born for the Field.

From now until September 30, 2021, members of the association can recruit 3-year members (new or renewals) and win great prizes. Following the baseball theme, growers can round the bases and increase their prize package.

1st Base (minimum 3 recruits) – Nebraska Corn food storage container
2nd Base (minimum 5 recruits) – Nebraska Corn stainless steel water bottle
3rd Base (minimum 10 recruits) – custom Nebraska Corn baseball jersey
Homerun (minimum 20 recruits) – $200 Cabela’s gift card

All members recruited during this summer membership drive will also count towards the overall top recruiter prizes awarded at the NeCGA Annual Meeting. The overall top recruiter for the year wins an expense paid trip to the 2022 Commodity Classic in New Orleans. More details can be found at

NeCGA seeking applicants for Director of Grower Services

The Nebraska Corn Growers Association (NeCGA) is seeking an energetic and self-starting individual to join our team as the director of grower services. The successful candidate will lead membership recruitment and retention programs, administer education and leadership programs, and coordinate communication efforts on behalf of the state’s leading corn association.

Additional responsibilities include leading collegiate and new leader programs, developing relationships with allied industries, and coordinating and editing our organizational newsletter. Ideal candidates should have a bachelor’s degree in an agricultural, leadership or related field, along with a preferred 3+ years of post-graduate experience in the agricultural industry.


Knowledge of common agricultural terms and issues, ability to work both independently and with others, including local producers to advance the Association’s mission, and communication skills to relay the Association’s key issues and develop new leaders are important. State and national travel will be part of the job. Competitive salary based on experience and benefits package available. Submit cover letter and resume to by August 20, 2021.

Using CRP Forages in Beef Cattle Diets Requires Attention to Detail

Several counties in Iowa have been released for emergency haying and grazing of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acres. While utilizing this additional forage resource provides producers with opportunities, there are challenges and considerations to think through when deciding how to best utilize the forage.

Forage quality

At best, forage quality of CRP acres harvested this late in the year is comparable to corn stalks. Quality is determined by the last time the acres were hayed or grazed, CRP program and forage species present, according to Iowa State University Extension and Outreach. Additionally, plants have been drought stressed this summer, and therefore, are more mature than normal. Previous samples of CRP forage have tested crude protein values as low as 2% to as high as 8%, with energy values frequently below 50% TDN.

More importantly, be aware of unwanted litter and debris (cans, shotgun shells, old fencing, garbage, etc.) that may be present, especially if baling CRP acres. To decrease the risk, avoid harvesting acres immediately alongside the ditch or fence line.

Consider supplementation

Due to the low forage quality, it is important to get a nutrient analysis on the forage resource to know what you are working with. Regardless of stage of production or class of cattle, additional energy and protein supplementation will be necessary to meet gestating cow or fed cattle nutritional requirements. Consider weaning calves to reduce cow requirements and subsequently, supplementation requirements.

Weed presence

Pay attention to weed presence and make sure you know if there any toxicities associated with that weed. CRP acres tend to contain a large amount of weeds or other forages and seed heads, that are not always desired in pastures, hay fields or even crop fields. Carefully consider your feeding areas when utilizing CRP hay to reduce the area where new weeds are introduced through seed dispersal in the hay or manure deposition or spreading. With drought stressed forages, bare ground will increase the likelihood of weeds next spring.

Water sources

If grazing CRP acres, carefully evaluate water sources. Water availability on CRP acres is often limited. Use caution when hauling water to cows. Avoid utilizing liquid fertilizer tanks to haul water, as it cannot be cleaned out well enough to prevent nitrate poisoning. Likewise, many ponds have experienced prolonged periods of hot temperatures and minimal influx of new water, which is the perfect environment for algae blooms. Watch for blue-green algae, or cyanobacteria, which is a major health risk for cattle.

Before grazing or harvesting, contact your local FSA office to ensure eligibility and approval. If you have questions regarding forage sampling or utilizing CRP forages in beef cattle diets, contact your ISU Extension and Outreach beef specialist. For additional resources dealing with drought, visit the resources provided by the Iowa Beef Center.

The Iowa Beef Center at Iowa State University was established in 1996 with the goal of supporting the growth and vitality of the state’s beef cattle industry. It comprises faculty and staff from Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, and College of Veterinary Medicine, and works to develop and deliver the latest research-based information regarding the beef cattle industry. For more information about IBC, visit

Iowa Farm Bureau returns to Iowa State Fair for the 'Great Meat Up'

Iowans and out-of-state visitors are eager to return to the sights, entertainment, activities and of course, food, at the 2021 Iowa State Fair held Aug. 12-22. This year, Iowa Farm Bureau has dubbed Farm Bureau Park, located on the Grand Concourse, as the ‘Great Meat Up’ where fairgoers can meet real Iowa farmers and learn on how food is grown today.   
“The ‘Great Iowa Meat Up’ celebrates our return to being together and the farmers who grow and raise the meat and dairy that Iowans love. No place is more of a testament to that than the Iowa State Fair where we see droves of people lined up for pork chops on a stick, huge turkey legs or ice cream desserts. But we also recognize many people want to know if their favorite fair foods were raised sustainably and with care,” says IFBF President Craig Hill.  “Farmers at Farm Bureau Park are excited to tell their story of top-notch animal care and the conservation efforts happening on their family farms. Through continuous innovation and technology, farmers today are doing more, growing more, and raising healthier animals than ever before – all while using fewer resources which is good for our planet and the animals. It’s a story they’re proud to share.”  
Free, low-touch family-friendly games with prizes will help visitors to Farm Bureau Park learn more about how nutritious real milk and dairy products are raised with the environment and animal care in mind. Dozens of Iowa farmers will also be on hand to answer questions fairgoers have on food and farming.

Iowa Farm Bureau members are encouraged to visit Farm Bureau Park to claim their free membership gift and enter a drawing to win a top-of-the-line Traeger Grill and ‘ultimate’ $500 Fareway meat package. Iowans who sign up to become a new Farm Bureau member are registered for a chance to win a Yeti Haul cooler and a $200 Fareway meat package. All visitors can also register to win $500 in free groceries by taking the Member Benefit Challenge. New this year, Farm Bureau Financial Services will hold daily drawings for $500 to invest in a college fund or retirement account.
Farm Bureau Day at the State Fair, Tues., Aug. 17 features the annual Farm Bureau Cookout Contest on the Grand Concourse with winners announced at noon. The contest is a celebration of Iowa-raised meat and hosts county Farm Bureau Cookout Contest contestants competing for cash prizes and the title of Cookout Champion. On Sat., Aug. 14, visitors can also meet Iowa’s youngest and brightest agriculturists during “Young Farmer Day” at Farm Bureau Park.

Iowa Farm Bureau-invited health partners will also provide many free services during the fair.  American Physical Therapy Association of Iowa will conduct physical and cognitive screenings on Aug. 13; Iowa Methodist Medical Center will do balance screenings and Unity Point will offer safe driving tips on Aug. 17 and 19; and Health Gauge will do free blood pressure screenings on Aug. 18. For a complete listing of events and activities going on this year at Farm Bureau Park, visit

ICGA Urges Bigger Role for Biofuels in President Biden’s Carbon Reduction Plan

President Biden released a carbon reduction plan for cars and trucks which includes a goal for electric vehicles to represent half of new vehicles sold starting in 2030 along with a proposed rulemaking to update fuel efficiency and emissions standards through model year 2026. The Iowa Corn Growers Association (ICGA) is urging the Biden Administration to support an increased role for clean, affordable, readily available renewable fuels such as ethanol to achieve its ambitious carbon reduction goals.

Below is a statement from Iowa Corn Growers Association President Carl Jardon:
“The Iowa Corn Growers Association understands and supports President Biden’s commitment to reducing the carbon footprint of our nation’s vehicle fleet, but this proposal could go much further to accelerate meaningful carbon reductions right now by utilizing the power and efficiency of clean, affordable, homegrown biofuels like ethanol. With 46 percent fewer greenhouse gas emissions compared to gasoline, we urge the Administration to embrace the important role ethanol can play as the most immediate, available, and affordable path to carbon reduction and cleaner air in the transportation sector both today and for the foreseeable future.”

The ICGA will continue to work with the Biden Administration to broaden the opportunity for biofuels to enhance the President’s carbon reduction plan and strengthen the final rulemaking on fuel efficiency and emissions standards.

Omission of High Octane Fuels from Fuel Emissions Standards is a Missed Opportunity, Per Farmers Union

In its proposed greenhouse gas emissions standards for passenger cars and light duty trucks, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) neglected to create a pathway to high octane, low carbon fuel, as National Farmers Union (NFU) and more than two dozen other farm, biofuels, and environmental organizations had urged the agency to do in a letter sent last month. The coalition noted that such fuels can not only help achieve “climate, environmental justice, public health, economic revitalization, and energy security objectives,” but that they are also supported by the Alliance for Automotive Innovation (AAI), which manufactures 99 percent of affected vehicles.

In a statement, National Farmers Union (NFU) President Rob Larew noted his disappointment with the proposal and urged EPA to find other routes to advance high octane fuels, including higher-level blends of ethanol.

“As the single largest contributor of greenhouse gas emissions, the transportation sector must be a central focus in our climate mitigation efforts – which is why NFU has been advocating the use of high octane, low carbon fuels, including higher-level blends of ethanol. While we support EPA’s proposal to reduce vehicles’ greenhouse gas emissions and other harmful air pollutants, the agency has missed a huge opportunity with its omission of these fuels.
“By transitioning to high octane fuels, we could improve vehicle efficiency and make significant strides towards many environmental goals, including better air quality and fewer emissions. But we aren’t just losing out on climate gains; we’re also squandering a chance to create new markets for farmers, grow rural economies, strengthen energy sovereignty, and cut drivers’ fuel expenditures. We are certainly disappointed by this oversight but will continue to work with EPA to find other paths to promote high octane fuels and realize their myriad benefits.”


This week, Sens. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Joni Ernst (R-Iowa), John Cornyn (R-Texas) and Cindy Hyde Smith (R-Miss.) introduced the Exposing Agricultural Trade Suppression (EATS) Act, which would prohibit state and local government from interfering with the production or manufacture of agricultural products in other states. The bill specifically aims to prevent states from passing similar measures as California’s Proposition 12, which imposes arbitrary animal housing standards that reach far outside of California’s borders to farms across the country.

“I don’t know why anyone would want to live in a state where it’s almost impossible to buy bacon. But California wants to impose such a rule on its residents. Iowa has an abundance of agricultural products to offer and folks from coast to coast should be able to enjoy them,” said Grassley.

The National Pork Producers Council supports this timely and highly important legislation. Preventing other states from imposing similarly harmful rules will benefit both agriculture producers and consumers throughout the country.

U.S. Beef and Pork Exports on Record Pace through June

U.S. red meat exports closed the first half of the year on a strong note, according to data released by USDA and compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF). Although volume and value eased from the enormous totals posted in April and May, export value was still the highest on record for the month of June and first-half shipments established a record pace for both beef and pork exports.

"USMEF had expected a continued strong performance in June for both beef and pork exports, despite significant headwinds," said USMEF President and CEO Dan Halstrom. "2021 has presented many formidable challenges for the U.S. industry, including a very tight labor situation, logistical obstacles that slowed product movement and foodservice restrictions in many key markets. So the fact that first-half exports reached record levels speaks to the loyalty of our international customer base, strong consumer demand for high-quality, nutritious U.S. red meat and the U.S. industry's ability to adapt to a challenging and rapidly changing business climate. We have also seen a welcome rebound in beef and pork variety meat volumes, which had been down last year."

June beef exports totaled 112,249 metric tons (mt), up 42% from a year ago when exports were still hampered by a COVID-related slowdown in production. Export value was $804.4 million, up 68% from a year ago and the third highest on record after April and May of this year. First-half exports reached 700,087 mt, up 18% from a year ago, valued at $4.64 billion (up 28%). Compared to 2018, the record year for U.S. beef exports, first-half results were up 6% in volume and 15% in value.

Beef exports were led by an exceptional performance in South Korea, rapid growth in China, strong demand in Japan and Taiwan and a rebound in shipments to Mexico and Central and South America.

Pork exports reached 238,935 mt in June, up 15% from a year ago, while export value climbed 35% to $696.8 million. First-half pork exports topped last year's record pace by 1% at 1.58 million mt, valued at $4.33 billion (up 7%).

While China/Hong Kong remains the largest destination for U.S. pork in 2021, first-half export growth was led by Mexico and Central America, along with a sharp increase in shipments to the Philippines and Colombia. Exports also increased to Japan and South Korea. With growing demand in these markets, exports to China/Hong Kong accounted for just under 30% of total U.S. export volume, after reaching 39% in the first half of 2020.

June exports of U.S. lamb were 37% below last year at 1,083 mt, but still managed a slight increase in value to $1.6 million. For the first half of the year, lamb exports increased 25% to 6,816 mt, valued at $9.1 million (up 14%). Growth was fueled mainly by strong demand for both muscle cuts and variety meat in Mexico, as well as larger muscle cut shipments to Bermuda, Trinidad and Tobago and Canada.

NPPC Applauds USDA’s Added Safety Measures on Imported Dogs from ASF-Positive Countries

Today, USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service announced a federal order establishing additional requirements for dogs imported into the United States for resale from African swine fever (ASF)-positive countries. Ensuring ASF and other foreign animal diseases don’t enter the country is one of the National Pork Producers Council’s (NPPC) top priorities. Earlier this year, NPPC sounded the alarm on the potential for imported rescue dogs to serve as disease carriers from their bedding, crates or coats, becoming a lead issue during our spring Legislative Action Conference (LAC).

The United States remains free of ASF – an animal disease affecting only pigs with no human health implications.

As USDA explained, effective immediately, importers of dogs into the United States for resale from a region in which ASF exists or is reasonably believed to exist, must submit written documentation verifying completion of the following requirements:
    The dog(s) and their shipping crate/container must be free of dirt, wood shavings, hay, straw, or any other organic/natural bedding material.
    All bedding that accompanies the dog(s) during transit must be properly disposed of at the U.S. post-entry point(s) of concentration.
    Each dog must have an ISO-compliant microchip implanted, and the individual microchip number must be verified immediately before each animal is bathed.
    Each dog must be bathed at the U.S. post-entry point(s) of concentration within two calendar days of arrival in the United States. Bathing must be documented in the Veterinary Services Dog Import Record.

“Each year, several thousand dogs enter the country for resale or adoption. If even one of these animals carried ASF into the country, it could put the U.S. swine herd and other livestock in jeopardy and have disastrous consequences for our nation’s agriculture sector,” said NPPC Chief Veterinarian Dr. Liz Wagstrom. “We thank USDA for implementing these additional safety measures to prevent the spread of ASF to the United States,” she added.

August Pork Checkoff Webinar To Focus on ASF

The next webinar for pork producers features Dr. Jack Shere from USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and John Sagle from U.S. Customs and Border Protection.

They will share how their agencies are working with the pork industry to prevent African swine fever from entering the U.S. USDA will also explain how it is assisting the Dominican Republic and other countries in dealing with the costly disease.   

What ASF in the Dominican Republic Means for U.S. Producers
Tuesday, August 10 at 1 p.m. CT  
Click to Register...

Farm Bureau Supports Bipartisan Infrastructure Legislation

The American Farm Bureau today sent a letter to all 100 U.S. senators expressing support for the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act. The following statement may be attributed to AFBF President Zippy Duvall:

“Modernizing America’s transportation infrastructure continues to be a priority for our members, which is why we are supporting this bipartisan legislation. The investments in our nation’s roads, bridges, ports and inland waterways are not just necessary, they are long overdue. This legislation also provides critical investments that will expand broadband internet access and repair and upgrade aging western water infrastructure that is, in many cases, 50 to 100 years old and not adequate to meet today’s needs.

“Our nation’s infrastructure gives America’s farmers and ranchers a competitive advantage and helps us move products from fields to consumers around the world. These investments will ensure we continue to safely and efficiently transport the agricultural and food products that our nation and the world rely on.

“It is welcome news that senators did not place the burden of these investments on America’s farmers and ranchers through increased tax rates or by eliminating stepped-up basis. We thank the senators who have spent months negotiating the deal and encourage the Senate to pass this investment in America’s future.

“Our leaders govern best when important and complex policy conversations are thoughtfully debated to find bipartisan common ground solutions.”

Ethanol Roars Again Into Sturgis

The Renewable Fuels Association is once again partnering with the Buffalo Chip Campground to host the 81st annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally, scheduled for today through Aug. 15 in Sturgis, S.D. As part of its work at Sturgis, RFA will once again host “Free Fuel Happy Hours” to help educate motorcycle enthusiasts about the benefits of using ethanol-blended fuels. RFA will also sponsor the annual Legends Ride on Monday, Aug. 9, participating along with South Dakota Governor Kristi Noem.

RFA became involved in the Sturgis rally more than a decade ago because it offers the opportunity to promote the benefits of high-octane, low-cost ethanol to the motorcycling community in a fun and exciting way.

“Ethanol is a powerful high-octane, low-carbon fuel choice for all sorts of vehicles, whether they are daily commuters or fishing boats and motorcycles,” said RFA Vice President of Industry Relations Robert White. “Programs like Sturgis showcase the power boost it offers while also clearing the air in such a magnificent natural setting as South Dakota’s Badlands and Black Hills. This year, we’re especially pleased to see Gov. Noem—a stalwart supporter of renewable fuels—in attendance.”

As a special benefit for bikers, RFA will again host its popular Free Fuel Happy Hours at the rally, providing a free tank of 93 octane E10 (10% ethanol) for motorcycles and a commemorative t-shirt. The free tank giveaway will be held from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. each day from Aug. 9 to 12, at the CrossRoads area of the Buffalo Chip Campground. The fuel station that will feature the Free Fuel Happy Hours was donated by the RFA in 2017. RFA will also have a presence throughout the campground with banners, videos on the jumbotrons, and addressing the concert crowd each night.

This will be the 13th rally for RFA. White and other RFA representatives will be on hand during the Free Fuel Happy Hours to answer any questions as motorcycle riders fill up on the high-octane fuel. Additionally, several RFA members will be in attendance to help educate riders about the numerous benefits of ethanol. This year, White will also speak to a group of several hundred female motorcycle enthusiasts as part of the rally’s Women’s Day program on Tuesday, Aug. 10.

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