Upcoming Nebraska Farmers Union Virtual Convention Agenda Highlights Announced
“108 Years of Leadership” is the theme for the 108th annual Nebraska Farmers Union (NeFU) state convention. John Hansen, NeFU President said, “Despite the ongoing challenges from the COVID-19 pandemic, the service work and focus of our general farm organization to serve the needs of family farmers, ranchers, and rural communities goes on. While we were hoping for the return of our normal in-person State Convention with handshakes and hugs, it is the judgment of our Board of Directors that in order to conduct the necessary elections and business of the organization, and keep our members safe from the Delta variant, we will be doing our state convention virtually via ZOOM.”
The 2021 NeFU State Convention was scheduled to be held in Lincoln at the Cornhusker Hotel, but instead will be held in farm homes across the state. Successful NeFU and NFU virtual Conventions were held last year, NeFU spring and fall District meetings, and two NFU Fly-In events. “NeFU Vice President Vern Jantzen of Plymouth said, “Our state needs to take full advantage of the additional federal funding to improve and expand rural broadband capacity and accessibility. We obviously need this technology.”
NeFU delegates and members will elect Board of Directors for three year terms from Districts 2, 4, and 6. Lynn Belitz is running for election for District 2 as the result of the retirement of Jim Knopik. Vern Jantzen is running for re-election in District 4. Graham Christensen is running for re-election in District 6. The final district caucuses to field potential additional candidates and all elections will be held Friday morning between 11:00 am and noon.
John Hansen has announced his candidacy for re-election to a two year term as President. Friday morning between 11 and noon will be the time for any other nominations and the election.
In addition to electing officers, three delegates and alternates to the National Farmers Union (NFU) Convention will be elected 11 to noon Friday morning. The 2021-2022 NeFU policy day will be held Tuesday, November 23rd.
Hansen noted “Since there are no transportation, lodging, meal, or registration costs, this is a great opportunity for our members to attend state convention.” Registration is at the NeFU website: https://nebraskafarmersunion.org/convention/. The latest information will be on the website. The usual two day format will be condensed to one day. NFU President Rob Larew will be the Friday noon keynote speaker followed by the always popular State Senator panel with Senators Carol Blood, John Cavanaugh, Myron Dorn, and John McCollister.
NeFU Vice President Vern Jantzen of Plymouth will chair the policy adoption process Friday afternoon.
NeFU President John Hansen concluded, “Our virtual convention will be practicing extreme social distancing, but masks will not be needed in order to keep us safe.”
Cuming County Board of Supervisors Seeking Extension Board Nominations
The Cuming County Board of Supervisors, are seeking nominations for individuals interested in serving a three-year term on the Cuming County Extension Board. Due to changes in the laws, Extension Board Members are appointed by the Board of Supervisors rather than being elected.
Three positions on the Cuming County Extension Board are up for appointment. The district lines are defined according to the Cuming County Board of Supervisors districts. Nominees are needed for the districts served by Supervisors District Steve Meister District 1 and Norbert Holtz, District 7. Eric Brockmann, Extension Board Representative, has agreed to a second 3-year term in District 3 (Supervisor Judy Mutzenberger). Potential candidates are encouraged to contact the Extension Office, if you have questions on which supervisor district you reside in.
A nominating committee is seeking nominations or calls from interested individuals. This nomination committee will be responsible for preparing a slate of potential candidates that will be submitted to the Board of Supervisors for their consideration. If you are interested in being a candidate, please feel free to contact the Cuming County Extension office at 402/372-6006. You may also contact nominating committee members Kristie Borgelt or Joan Plagge.
According to Extension Educator Hannah Guenther, the operation of Nebraska Extension should be given serious consideration by all county residents. It operates the tax funds under the guidance of the Cuming County Extension Board. Extension programs focus on priority needs and issues facing people of the county.
Challenge Champions Selected at Aksarben Stock Show 2021
The 94th Aksarben Stock Show held its first ever Grand Drive in Grand Island, Nebraska with a full house watching as Champions were selected in beef, swine, sheep, goats, and broilers. There were 2,326 exhibitors from 14 States that exhibited Swine, Sheep, Beef, Goats, and Broilers. Sponsors were on hand to present scholarships/premiums to 52 accomplished exhibitors totally over $152,000. Scholarship/Premiums were presented to winners in all species. Another segment of the Aksarben Stock Show was the Challenge Program. Challenge Champions were crowned in the calf, lamb, and pig areas. This year’s show had 46 entries that were supported by 46 Sponsor/Partners.
The Challenge Program is a highly educational program that encourages youth to learn more about feeding, health, and care of their animals. They also go through a live interview process that allows youth to communicate their knowledge of the entire program. Earlier this year individuals drew for their animal at a distribution site. After returning home with their animal, they cared for and trained their projects in preparation for exhibition at the Aksarben Stock Show. Scores were tabulated that included record book, sponsorship communication, live placing, showmanship, average daily gain, and live interview. The Challenge animals were provided by Wagonhammer Ranches (Calf), Burch Livestock, LLC (Lamb), and Zimmerman Hog Farm (Pig).
The top three individuals from calf, lamb, and pig were announced and presented Scholarship/Premiums at the Grand Drive. Winners of the Challenge Program were:
Beef: Grand Champion-Lacey Schmidt, Deshler, Nebraska ($5,000); Reserve Grand Champion-Jack Ritter, Beemer, Nebraska ($3,000); 3rd-Kade Schweitzer, Wellington, Colorado ($2,000).
Lamb-Grand Champion-Leah Spencer, Culbertson, Nebraska ($2,500); Reserve Grand Champion-Kallie Nelson, New Richland, Minnesota ($1,500); 3rd-Hanna Bedwell, New Virginia, Iowa ($1,000).
Pig-Grand Champion-Mason Janda, Ravenna, Nebraska ($2,500); Reserve Grand Champion-Matthew Bruns, North Platte, Nebraska ($1,500); 3rd-Trevor Parde, Adams, Nebraska ($1,000).
The Scholarship/Premium Program was made possible by the following donors: Grand Island Saddle Club, Pinnacle Bank, American Foods Group, Jay Wolf, Nebraska Pork Producers, and an anonymous donor.
The 95th Aksarben Stock Show will be held Sept. 23-26, 2022 at Fonner Park in Grand Island, Nebraska. The show moved from Omaha to Grand Island in 2017. It is being managed and produced by the Nebraska State Fair.
FALL IRRIGATION ON ALFLAFA
- Brad Schick, NE Extension Educator
There have been many stressors on alfalfa fields this year, from early weevils to drought and hail and now fall armyworms and cutworms. Can fall irrigation help with stand stress?
For irrigated alfalfa, targeted fall irrigation may help the long-term strength of the stand. Although alfalfa is drought tolerant with its deep roots, it uses a lot of water. With warmer than normal projections for the fall, alfalfa will continue to grow and use water, depleting the soil profile. Additionally, some moisture on the surface is necessary to prevent the roots from drying out and dying over the winter. With a full soil moisture profile headed into winter, soil temperature is better regulated, helping keep plants alive during the winter and initiating growth better in the spring.
Late season irrigation occurs during a time when evaporation is very low. This means little of what we supply will be lost, with most going to late season growth or filling the soil profile for strong spring growth. In many alfalfa fields, the water supplied during the growing season may never reach beyond 4 feet, when the roots go down 8 feet. By padding the profile now, extra water will help plants better deal with stress during high heat and high water demands next summer. Alfalfa fields that have soils with low infiltration rates may not be able to absorb enough water during peak use periods of the year, even when supplemented with irrigation. Having a full profile going into next year for these fields to start out ahead instead of playing catch-up is one more reason for fall irrigation if available.
Watering dry alfalfa fields in the fall will help recharge water in the soil profile, combat winter stress, and start plants growing strong during the spring of a dry year.
USDA to survey row crops county acreage and production
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will survey producers in 38 states, including Nebraska, as part of its 2021 Row Crops County Agricultural Production Survey. The survey will collect information on total acres planted and harvested and total yield and production of row crops to support estimates down to the county level. Producers can complete their survey securely online at agcounts.usda.gov.
“The data provided by producers will help federal and state programs support the farmer,” said Nicholas Streff, director of the NASS Northern Plains Regional Field Office, “We hope every producer who receives this survey will take the time to respond. Producers benefit when there are data available to help determine accurate loan rates, disaster payments, crop insurance price elections, and more. Without data, agencies such as USDA’s Risk Management Agency or Farm Service Agency may not have enough information on which to base their programs.”
If producers don’t respond online, in a few weeks a NASS representative will contact selected Nebraska growers to arrange telephone interviews to complete the survey.
The information you provide will be used for statistical purposes only. In accordance with federal law, your responses will be kept confidential and will not be disclosed in identifiable form.
The survey results will be published in NASS’s Quick Stats database (quickstats.nass.usda.gov). For more information on NASS surveys and reports and for the release dates by commodity, visit nass.usda.gov/Publications/Calendar/reports_by_date.php or contact the NASS Northern Plains Regional Field Office at (800) 582-6443.
Pro-Ag Outlook and Management Webinar Series Set for November
The Iowa State University Extension and Outreach farm management team will hold its annual Pro-Ag Outlook and Management program via five webinars, scheduled for Nov. 1-5.
The goal of the program is to provide agribusiness leaders a concise evaluation of current market conditions, opportunities and challenges, and expected trends in crop and livestock income potential and management considerations heading into a new year.
Producers will hear about the COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 impact on farm markets, and what might lie ahead as the U.S. and the world continue to recover.
“We’re still recovering and trying to move forward from the COVID crisis,” said Chad Hart, professor in economics and extension grain markets specialist at Iowa State. “Whether it’s crop and livestock prices, supply chain disruptions or changes in land values and agricultural investments, producers have a lot on their mind right now.”
Speakers include ISU Extension and Outreach specialists Chad Hart; Alejandro Plastina, associate professor in economics and extension economist; Lee Schulz, associate professor in economics and livestock economist; Bobby Martens, associate professor and ag supply chain specialist; and Wendong Zhang, associate professor in economics and extension economist.
This program takes an in-depth look into the outlook for agriculture in 2022 and provides an opportunity to discuss the current Iowa economic situation with university experts.
Seminars dates and speakers
Monday, Nov. 1. Chad Hart discusses crop markets and prices beyond 2021.
Tuesday, Nov. 2. Bobby Martens discusses supply chain disruptions -- short and long-term consequences on agriculture.
Wednesday, Nov. 3. Alejandro Plastina discusses short and long-term views on voluntary ag carbon markets.
Thursday, Nov. 4. Wendong Zhang discusses farmland values and U.S.-China agricultural trade.
Friday, Nov. 5. Lee Schulz discusses livestock outlook and profit potential for beef, pork and other Iowa industries.
All webinars will be moderated by Ann Johanns, education extension specialist with ISU Extension and Outreach. She can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 515-337-2766.
Registration http://www.aep.iastate.edu/proag/ for the whole series is $20 per email address and includes access to five live programs and archived recordings of each session. Viewing of the live and recorded programs is through a web browser and no additional software downloads are needed.
Only paid registrants will have access to the webinar recordings following the live events. Initial questions for the presenters can be sent to email@example.com.
Researchers Developing New Genetic Lines for Organic Corn Production
Iowa State University scientists are leading an effort to improve efficiency and genetics in organic corn production, a fast-growing sector of the agricultural world since the beginning of 2020.
Thomas Lübberstedt, a professor of agronomy at Iowa State, leads a research team aiming to develop new lines of corn that take advantage of recent advancements in crop genetics that also can be grown according to organic standards. The research team recently received a $1.4 million grant from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Institute of Food and Agriculture to apply genetic tools to the development of organic sweet corn and varieties of corn for specialty uses, such as for popcorn and tortillas.
"We're going to identify new genes that can be used in organic production to improve efficiency," Lübberstedt said. "By using modern DNA marker technologies, we think we can more efficiently develop organic sweet corn and specialty corn varieties."
The research team also includes Paul Scott, a research geneticist for the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Agricultural Research Service, who will focus on genetic traits such as nutritional value and genetic purity. Scott also studies specialty corn varieties, such as white and blue corn, often used to make tortilla chips. Bill Tracy, a professor of agronomy at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, will focus on improving sweet corn traits.
Lübberstedt said the researchers will build on previous work to identify genes controlling traits valued by organic producers, such as pest tolerance and kernel quality.
"In this new project, we say that there's quite a few genes that are already known in maize that would add value to rapidly generate new sweet corn or specialty corn varieties if you could handle them efficiently using the tools and methods allowed in the organic production context," he said.
To be certified organic, producers cannot use any synthetic chemicals or inputs in growing their crop. That means many of the fertilizers, pesticides and herbicides used in conventional corn production are off limits when growing organic corn. Instead, organic farmers rely on manure or compost to fertilize their crops. They also prize varieties that are more tolerant of pests, since they can't treat their fields with synthetic pesticides.
Most seeds bred for corn production are suited to conventional agricultural systems, not organic. The researchers will create proof-of-concept corn varieties better suited for organic production. The researchers will utilize an organic-compatible version of doubled haploid technology, which allows for the development of usable inbred lines much faster than conventional breeding. Organic farmers who have agreed to evaluate the hybrids will supply feedback to the researchers on which varieties appear most promising.
Kathleen Delate, a research team member and professor of horticulture and agronomy, said the demand for organic corn has grown rapidly in recent years as consumers gain greater awareness of the environmental impacts of food production. Sales of organic food in the United States climbed over 12% last year, jumping from roughly $55 billion in 2019 to around $62 billion in 2020. Delate said there are around 132,000 acres devoted to organic production in Iowa, roughly evenly split between corn and soybeans, she said.
Delate said organic corn is a particularly important product because organic livestock, poultry and egg production depend on organic corn for feed.
"Even if you're not consuming organic corn directly, it has a big impact on the market," she said.
Surge in New Farmer Membership Strengthens ISA's Influence as New Program Year Begins
A surge in Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) farmer membership strengthens the association’s influence and service to the industry as a new program year begins.
A record 1,120 new farmer members joined ISA during the 2021 program year ending Sept. 30. The explosive growth brings the new number of farmer members to more than 13,500 as of Oct. 1 and the start of the association’s 2022 program year.
“Farmer membership in the association is critical in enabling the industry to flourish,” said ISA President Robb Ewoldt of Davenport. “Their insights, ideas and participation will sharpen ISA’s focus, delivering results and opportunities by growing soybean production and demand. The record membership growth will undoubtedly strengthen ISA’s voice on issues impacting all industry stakeholders.”
ISA’s Farmer Membership is available at no additional cost for farmers who certify they produce and market at least 250 bushels of soybeans annually.
Becoming an ISA farmer member expands access to programs and important industry information, says ISA Producer Services Coordinator Whitley Frieden.
“ISA is driven to increase yields and find new uses for soybeans by providing producers with farmer-focused research to help make the best decision for their operation,” she says. “Whether it’s participating in research trials, sharpening your communication skills, or receiving the latest information and insights, there are benefits for every farmer.”
Farmer membership facilitates the sharing of timely information regarding soy-centric issues. It also gives farmers seamless access to meeting notifications, opportunities to provide feedback and input and ways to become more involved in programs and activities sponsored by ISA.
“Farmer membership opens a world of opportunity to engage and help lead the industry forward,” Ewoldt adds.
Soybean farmers wanting to activate or validate their ISA farmer membership can do so at iasoybeans.com.
EPA, Army Announce Regional Roundtables on WOTUS
Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and U.S. Department of the Army (the agencies) called on communities to propose roundtables to provide input on the regional implications of “waters of the United States” (WOTUS). The regional roundtables will engage stakeholders representing diverse perspectives in meaningful dialogue to help inform the agencies’ work to develop an enduring definition of WOTUS that supports public health, environmental protection, agricultural activity, and economic growth.
“Crafting a lasting definition of WOTUS means that we must bolster our understanding of how different regions experience and protect our nation’s vital waters,” said EPA Assistant Administrator for Water Radhika Fox. “These roundtables will provide a great opportunity to deepen our shared knowledge. They also represent one opportunity—in a suite of strategic tools—the agencies are utilizing to obtain input on this important topic.”
EPA and Army are announcing a process for stakeholders to submit nomination letters with a slate of participants to potentially be selected as one of ten geographically focused roundtables. EPA and Army are seeking to understand perspectives:
- Highlighting how different regions are affected by the various WOTUS definitions.
- Learning about stakeholder experiences, challenges, and opportunities under different regulatory regimes.
- Facilitating engagement across diverse perspectives to inform the development of a durable and workable definition of WOTUS.
The agencies’ experience implementing previous definitions of WOTUS has highlighted the regional variability of water resources and the importance of close engagement with stakeholders to better understand their unique circumstances. The regional roundtables will provide opportunities to discuss geographic similarities and differences, particular water resources that are characteristic of or unique to each region, and site-specific feedback about implementation.
The agencies are inviting stakeholders to organize a targeted set of interested parties and regional representatives to participate in these discrete roundtables. Each nomination for a roundtable must include a proposed slate of participants representing perspectives of agriculture; conservation groups; developers; drinking water/wastewater management; environmental organizations; environmental justice communities; industry, and other key interests in that region. The agencies request that organizers submit their self-nomination letter via email not later than November 3, 2021.
For more information visit: www.epa.gov/wotus.
The Clean Water Act prohibits the discharge of pollutants from a point source to navigable waters unless otherwise authorized under the Act. Navigable waters are defined in the Act as “the waters of the United States, including the territorial seas.” Thus, “waters of the United States” (WOTUS) is a threshold term establishing the geographic scope of federal jurisdiction under the Clean Water Act. The term “waters of the United States” is not defined by the Act but has been defined by EPA and the Army in regulations since the 1970s and jointly implemented in the agencies’ respective programmatic activities.
On Jun 9, 2021, EPA and Army announced their intent to revise the definition of WOTUS to better protect our nation’s water resources. On July 30, 2021, EPA, Army, and USDA announced a series of engagement opportunities, including the agencies’ intent to convene ten regionally focused and inclusive roundtables during the fall and winter.
Anhydrous Breaks $800 Per Ton as Fertilizer Prices Soar
According to retail fertilizer prices tracked by DTN for the first week of October 2021, nearly all of the major fertilizers were up a sizeable amount. DTN designates a move of 5% or higher as a significant increase or decrease. Seven of the eight major fertilizers recorded a considerable move higher compared to last month.
Potash and urea led the way, with both up 17% compared to last month. Potash had an average price of $675/ton, while urea was at $653/ton. MAP was 10% more expensive from the prior month. The phosphorus fertilizer had an average price of $829/ton. Both UAN28 and UAN32 were 8% higher compared to last month. UAN28 had an average price of $400/ton while UAN32 was at $456/ton. UAN28 crossed the $400/ton level for the first time since the second week of May 2013. That week the price was $400/ton as well.
Anhydrous is 7% more expensive compared to a month prior. The nitrogen fertilizer has an average price of $803/ton. Anhydrous broke through the $800/ton level for the first time since the second week of July 2013. That week the average price was $809/ton. DAP is 5% higher looking back a month. The phosphorus fertilizer had an average price of $736/ton. The remaining fertilizer, 10-34-0, was just slightly higher compared to last month. Starter fertilizer had an average price of $639/ton.
On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.71/lb.N, anhydrous $0.49/lb.N, UAN28 $0.71/lb.N and UAN32 $0.71/lb.N.
Retail fertilizer prices compared to a year ago show all fertilizers have increased significantly. 10-34-0 is now 40% more expensive, DAP is 67% higher, MAP is 78% more expensive, urea is 81% higher, UAN32 is 83% more expensive, anhydrous is 89% higher, UAN28 91% is more expensive and potash is 101% higher compared to last year.
EIA forecasts higher U.S. heating bills this winter
The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) expects that U.S. households will spend more money on heating costs this winter and consume more energy to keep homes warm. In its Winter Fuels Outlook, EIA forecasts an increase in average heating prices this winter for all regions of the United States and all heating fuels under a wide variety of weather conditions.
Compared with last winter’s heating costs, EIA forecasts U.S. households will spend 54% more for propane, 43% more for heating oil, 30% more for natural gas, and 6% more for electric heating. U.S. households will spend even more if the weather is colder than expected.
“As we have moved beyond what we expect to be the deepest part of the pandemic-related economic downturn, growth in energy demand has generally outpaced growth in supply,” said EIA Acting Administrator Steve Nalley. “These dynamics are raising energy prices around the world.”
In addition to higher fuel costs, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration expects a slightly colder winter this year than last year. EIA expects those colder temperatures to increase U.S. energy consumption for heating this winter.
“The higher global and domestic energy prices that are resulting from economies beginning to grow again are going to translate into larger household bills for energy this winter,” Nalley said.
The Winter Fuels Outlook is a supplement to EIA’s Short-Term Energy Outlook (STEO). Other highlights from this month’s STEO include:
EIA revised its Henry Hub natural gas spot price forecasts to average $5.80 per million British thermal units in the fourth quarter of 2021, 45% higher than last month’s estimate. “Increased natural gas demand in Europe and Asia is supporting record U.S. LNG exports to those regions,” Nalley said. “Low natural gas inventories in the United States and Europe make our price forecasts very uncertain, because a severe cold snap could lead to significant price effects.”
Brent crude oil prices averaged more than $80 per barrel (b) so far in October, a nearly seven-year high, as Hurricane Ida reduced U.S. oil production and OPEC+ announced it would stick to its plan of increasing crude oil production by 400,000 barrels per day in November. EIA estimates that Brent crude oil will average $81/b for the remainder of 2021, $10 higher than its previous estimate. “We expect U.S. crude oil production to ramp up in 2022 as tight oil production rises, which should help moderate prices from this level next year,” Nalley said.
The entire Short-Term Energy Outlook is available on the EIA website https://www.eia.gov/outlooks/steo/.
The product described in this press release was prepared by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), the statistical and analytical agency within the U.S. Department of Energy. By law, EIA’s data, analysis, and forecasts are independent of approval by any other officer or employee of the U.S. government. The views in the product and this press release therefore should not be construed as representing those of the U.S. Department of Energy or other federal agencies.
Bartlett to Construct Soybean Crushing Plant in Southeast Kansas
$325 million facility to benefit supply chains for renewable fuels, food products and animal feeds
Bartlett, a Savage Company, has obtained approval from the Board of County Commissioners of Montgomery County, Kansas to receive county-issued industrial revenue bonds to support Bartlett’s development of a soybean crushing facility in Montgomery County. The Bartlett plant will be capable of handling approximately 38.5 million bushels of soybeans annually to crush into soybean meal and refined soybean oil, feedstock used in producing renewable fuels, food products and animal feeds.
“This is an important milestone for our project, enabling infrastructure investment in Kansas that accelerates the nation’s transition to a cleaner, greener and more sustainable transportation system,” said Bartlett President Bob Knief. “We appreciate the County Commissioners’ recognition of the long-term benefits this plant will provide by expanding markets for area producers and agribusinesses and driving economic growth in Montgomery County and Southeast Kansas. With strong demand for soybean products, we look forward to our crushing facility supporting farming families in the Midwest and playing a vital role in multiple supply chains including renewable diesel production.”
“Agriculture-based and renewable energy businesses are major economic drivers in Kansas, and I am extremely pleased to see Bartlett recognize just how ideal this location is for the future of their operations,” Governor Laura Kelly said. “Powered by Kansas’ outstanding infrastructure and talented workforce, I’m confident Bartlett’s new project will be a tremendous success and have a significant economic impact on the region and our state as a whole.”
“With our strategic location in the middle of the country and our strong agricultural roots, I’m absolutely thrilled that Bartlett chose Kansas as the place to locate this impressive new facility,” Lieutenant Governor and Commerce Secretary David Toland said. “We know they had other states in the region to choose from, so I am proud but not surprised that they selected Kansas as the winning location for this project. It’s proof of their visionary approach, and of the strong assets in Kansas we have to offer ag-based and renewable energy companies.”
Construction is scheduled to start in early 2022, with plant operations anticipated to begin in 2024. The Bartlett facility will create about 50 permanent jobs and process about 110,000 bushels of soybeans per day. The project also will support additional jobs and economic activity during construction.
The approved bond incentives from Montgomery County and tax credits available through the state’s High Performance Incentive Program (HPIP) make Bartlett’s estimated $325 million investment in soybean processing infrastructure possible. With easy access to highways 160, 166, 169 and 400, the plant will create strong local demand for soybeans and provide a consistent and competitive source of soybean meal, hulls and oil for the feed, food and renewable fuel industries. This project also will encourage rail improvements benefitting Southeast Kansas. The South Kansas & Oklahoma Railroad, owned and operated by WATCO, will provide rail services for the facility, connecting the plant to a network of Class 1 carriers.
Bartlett is part of the Savage family of companies, a global provider of industry infrastructure and supply chain services, based in Salt Lake City, Utah. The Company is actively working with partners in the agriculture and energy industries to lead the buildout of renewable energy assets and services across North America. In addition to Bartlett’s planned soybean crushing facility in Kansas, Savage recently announced its newly completed multi-commodity railport near Stockton, CA that provides a gateway for the distribution of renewable fuels into California. Other projects, spanning all areas of renewable energy supply chains, are in various stages of development.
"Come Together for Animal Ag" at 2022 Animal Ag Alliance Stakeholders Summit!
The Animal Agriculture Alliance's 2022 Stakeholders Summit set for May 11 -12 in Kansas City, Missouri will be themed "Come Together for Animal Ag: Be Informed, Be Ready, Be Here."
The Summit is a one-of-a-kind conference attended by a diverse group of decision makers, including representatives from farms, ranches, allied industries, food processors, restaurants, grocery stores, legislatures, universities, government agencies and media. The 2021 event (hosted virtually) was the largest yet, attracting 594 attendees from around the world. The 2022 Summit will offer both virtual and live attendance options and will include a preconference webinar series leading up to the main in person event.
There’s only one way to effectively safeguard the future of animal agriculture—together. And now, we finally have the opportunity to come together in person once again. The 2022 Animal Agriculture Alliance Stakeholders Summit is your chance to meet and collaborate with stakeholders throughout the food chain and across commodities. Be informed on the latest news, data and developments in animal welfare, sustainability and other hot topics. Be ready with the tools to work side by side to protect our livelihoods. Be here as we come together to connect, engage and protect the farm and food communities. Join us at the 2022 Summit – “Come Together for Animal Ag: Be Informed, Be Ready, Be Here!”
Registration for the Summit will open in early 2022 and a tentative schedule will be shared at that time. Check the Summit website https://animalagalliance.org/initiatives/stakeholders-summit/ for the most up-to-date information. You can also follow the hashtag #AAA22 for periodic updates about the event on social media.
Greeneye Announces Commercial Launch of AI Precision Spraying Technology Proven to Cut Herbicide Use By 78%
Agritech pioneer, Greeneye Technology, today announces the commercial launch of its unique AI-enabled precision spraying technology. Marking a major milestone in its mission to significantly reduce chemical usage in agriculture and increase productivity and profitability for farmers, the company has secured its first commercial sale with one of the largest farming operations in Israel.
Significantly, this news represents the first stage in Greeneye’s global roll-out, which will continue in early 2022 with its launch in North America, where it will initially work with corn and soybean farmers in the Midwest, before increasing availability to other states in 2023. Reflecting the growing demand from farmers for a commercially-viable precision spraying solution, Greeneye’s early adopter program in North America was oversubscribed within days of its announcement, and the company already has a long waiting list of customers for 2023.
Backed by leading global agrochemical manufacturer, Syngenta, Israeli-based Greeneye Technology has developed a proprietary precision spraying technology that is proven to cut herbicide use by 78% and reduce herbicide costs by more than 50%1 (average figures) while also improving weed control efficacy compared to traditional broadcast spraying (see video). This breakthrough is achieved with the use of AI technology that can detect and spray weeds amongst crops (green on green) with 95.7% accuracy. Crucially, the system is designed to integrate seamlessly into any brand or size of commercial sprayer, removing the need for farmers to invest in new machines. It also ensures that precision spraying can be carried out at the same travel speed as broadcast spraying – 20 km/h – ensuring no reduction in productivity for farmers.
Nadav Bocher, CEO, Greeneye Technology, comments: “Weeds represent one of the greatest threats to global crop production – in the US alone, they are estimated to cost farmers more than $33b in lost production annually. Today, farmers address this challenge by spraying herbicides across the entire field – even though weed infestation may be as low as 10%. As a result, not only are farmers spending far more money on herbicides than they need to, but millions of gallons of herbicides are being needlessly sprayed each year, which is contributing to the mounting challenges posed by herbicide-resistant weeds, chemical drift, and soil and water contamination.
“Despite a concerted effort by the agriculture industry to develop precision spraying technologies, so far very few of these projects have moved beyond the trial phase. This is because the technology either fails to deliver the necessary level of accuracy and efficacy, or it requires farmers to invest in new spraying machines, making it prohibitively expensive. Uniquely, Greeneye’s solution overcomes both of these challenges, offering farmers what we believe is the most advanced commercially-viable precision spraying technology on the market.”
Greeneye’s solution uses a combination of hardware and deep machine learning to enable intelligent, real-time weed management decisions in the field. Cameras mounted directly onto spraying machines capture images at a rate of 40 frames per second, enabling rapid detection and classification of weeds down to the species level. Utilizing Greeneye’s proprietary dataset and algorithms, the system instantly calculates the amount of herbicide required and sprays it directly onto the weeds, leaving nearby crops unaffected.
Another important advantage of Greeneye’s technology is its unique dual-spraying function which enables farmers to apply residual herbicides on a broadcast basis while applying non-residual herbicides precisely on weeds. Currently, farmers mix together residual and non-residual herbicides and spray them from the same nozzle, meaning they use far more non-residual herbicide than is needed. The dual-spraying system overcomes this challenge by enabling farmers to spray only the herbicide that is required.
“We are incredibly proud to announce the commercial launch of our precision spraying technology, but reducing herbicide use is just the beginning. The next generation of our technology, which is already in development, will also be capable of precisely spraying chemicals such as fungicides and micronutrients, increasing savings to farmers beyond herbicides,” says Bocher.
“At the same time, our unique AI capabilities enable us to collect ultra-high resolution data from the entire field, providing valuable insights to farmers and enabling them to treat their field at the plant level. With this information at our fingertips, Greeneye is uniquely positioned to guide the global agriculture industry towards a more sustainable – and profitable – future.”
Thursday, October 14, 2021
Wednesday October 13 Ag News
Upcoming Nebraska Farmers Union Virtual Convention Agenda Highlights Announced
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