Wednesday, August 24, 2022

Wednesday August 24 Pro Farmer Crop Tour (Western Iowa) + Ag News

Pro Farmer Crop Tour - Western Iowa Results - Aug. 24, 2022

Corn Yield Estimates (bu/acre)
District - '22  -  '21  -  3 year ave
1 (NW)  - 181.12  -  183.96  -  183.37  
4 (WC)  - 180.80  -  201.10  -  188.74
7 (SW)  - 173.70  -  192.47  -  187.83

Soybean Pod Counts (3'x3' sq.)
District - '22  -  '21  -  3 year ave
1 (NW) -  1089.74 - 1089.35 - 1066.20
4 (WC)  -  1258.94 - 1225.24 - 1199.57
7 (SW)  -  1223.85 - 1367.61 - 1250.92

Full Iowa estimates will be released on Thursday evening during a joint program in Rochester, MN.  Pro Farmer will then release their U.S. corn and soybean yield estimates on Friday afternoon shortly after the markets close for the day.  

Ricketts Provides Update on Trade Mission to the United Kingdom & Ireland

Today, Governor Pete Ricketts provided an update to media on the State of Nebraska’s trade mission to the United Kingdom and Ireland.  The Nebraska trade delegation departed for the mission on August 21st and will return home on August 28th.  It includes State agency directors, agricultural producers, insurance industry leaders, and economic development leaders.

On Monday, the trade delegation met with the Association of British Insurers to highlight Nebraska’s strength in insurance.  Since the United Kingdom exited the European Union in 2020 (Brexit), UK insurers have been looking to develop stronger relationships in the United States.  Nebraska Department of Insurance Director Eric Dunning and other key leaders from the state’s insurance industry are developing relationships with regulators and insurers in the UK during the trade mission to position Nebraska as a key partner with their insurance sector.

On today’s conference call, Malcolm Smith, VP of State Government Relations for AFLAC, shared his company’s great experience in Nebraska after having domiciled in the state about 20 years ago.  As part of the trade delegation, he is helping to advocate Nebraska’s responsive and fair regulatory environment to UK insurers looking to do business in the United States.  During his comments on today’s call, Gov. Ricketts reiterated the value of being able to promote Nebraska as an ideal place for UK companies to locate as they seek to expand product and service offerings across America.

While in the United Kingdom, the Nebraska trade delegation is working to reduce trade barriers.  On Tuesday, Gov. Ricketts met with Penny Mordaunt, the UK’s Minister of State for Trade Policy.  With bilateral trade talks stalled between the British and American federal governments, the UK has begun reaching out to individual US states.  In their meeting, Gov. Ricketts and Minister Mordaunt discussed ways to open up trade between Nebraska and the UK.

Growing Nebraska agriculture is another key priority of the trade mission.  During today’s conference call, Nebraska Farm Bureau President Mark McHargue talked about opportunities for beef and ethanol exports to the UK.  He said that Nebraska ranchers have been able to share their success reducing energy inputs, while increasing beef production.  The trade delegation met with the UK’s Department of Environment, Food, and Rural Affairs to tell the story of Nebraska agriculture.  They also dined at Goodman’s restaurant in London, which sells premium beef from Nebraska.

Gov. Ricketts added that the Nebraska delegation has been able to highlight advancements in ethanol—like carbon sequestration and the adoption of higher ethanol blends—to leaders in the UK.  Last year, the UK upped its ethanol blending requirement for all gasoline from 5% to 10%, generating demand for biofuels.  The Governor said Nebraska ethanol offers a great solution for consumers in the UK concerned about rising fuel costs and looking to reduce their carbon footprint.

Tomorrow, the trade delegation will meet with leaders of Haleon to thank them for doing business in Nebraska.  The company (recently spun off from GSK), is headquartered in central London, and it manufactures consumer healthcare products at a facility just east of Nebraska’s capital.

The Nebraska trade mission will continue Thursday afternoon in Ireland.

Saunders County Quarterly Ag Breakfast

 Aaron Nygren, Water & Integrated Cropping Systems Extension Educator

Nebraska Extension in Saunders County would like to welcome you to join us this Friday, August 26th at 7:30 a.m. at the Eastern Nebraska Research and Extension Center (Formerly known as the ARDC) south of Mead for the Saunders County Quarterly Ag Breakfast. We will start the program with a hot breakfast sponsored by First Northeast Bank of Nebraska and the Saunders County Livestock Association and then will get an update on commodity markets by Jeff Peterson of Heartland Farm Partners.

Hope to see you on Friday!


– Jerry Volesky, NE Extension Educator

Whether it is a new stand of alfalfa or cool-season grasses, late summer is an ideal planting time.  These forages planted at this time establish well and usually have much less weed pressure.  However, for non-irrigated acres, adequate and consistent moisture will be needed after planting.

Proper seedbed preparation is crucial for late summer plantings.  Good seed-to-soil contact and weed control are critical, both when seeding into tilled, prepared seedbeds or into wheat stubble.  Conserve soil moisture whenever possible and put extra effort into getting a firm seedbed.  For alfalfa, be sure to plant early enough, so it has six to eight weeks between emergence and a hard freeze to develop good cold tolerance.

For cool-season grasses, plant at least three or more grasses in a mixture rather than a single species.  No single plant is best adapted to all situations, so mixtures help maximize your stand and production potential.

Several grasses can be used, but one of the best is orchardgrass.  It regrows fast after proper grazing and grows better in summer than most cool-season grasses.  However, it does tend to thin out over time.  Smooth brome works well with orchardgrass because it is long lived and can spread into areas as orchardgrass plants die.  It also is very palatable, but summer growth is slow.  Other good choices include meadow brome, intermediate wheatgrass, tall fescue, and festulolium.  Legumes such as alfalfa or red or white clover can also be part of the mixture.

With late summer plantings of alfalfa or cool-season grasses, be especially wary of grasshoppers.  They sometimes seem to come from nowhere, and they love to eat new seedlings.  Spray field margins with insecticides before planting if necessary.

 Women in agriculture workshop to provide tools to manage anxiety

A two-part virtual workshop hosted by Nebraska Extension’s Women in Agriculture program in September will focus on managing and working through anxiety.

“Breaking Down Anxiety: Tools to Help You Live a Less Anxious Life,” will hold its first session from 1 to 3 p.m. Central time on Sept. 8. The second session is scheduled for 1 to 2 p.m. Central time on Sept. 29.  

It will be facilitated by Ashley Machado, a mental health consultant who works primarily with agricultural professionals and their families.  

“Sometimes anxiety can feel all-consuming, like you’re on a train you don’t want to be on and you don’t know how to get off. Other times it can feel like there’s a light at the end of the tunnel, but you keep getting stuck on a hamster wheel,” Machado said.  

The workshop will discuss how anxiety shows up, why it can be a reaction to uncertainty, and offer advice for developing skills to manage anxiety and its effects.  

Machado is an advocate of rethinking the ways that we support mental health in the agriculture industry and specializes in breaking down big ideas and deep feelings into simple, actionable strategies. She applies 15 years of experience to helping individuals and organizations in agriculture to develop the tools they need to maintain good mental health and operate and live fully.  

Machado holds a bachelor’s degree in human development and a master’s in social work with an emphasis in clinical mental health. She grew up in the dairy industry and now lives in California with her husband, a rancher and almond farmer.  

The workshop will be held via Zoom and participants should plan on attending both sessions. Registration is $20 per person and can be completed on the Nebraska Women in Agriculture website,  

This material is based upon work supported by USDA-NIFA under Award Number 2020-70028-32728.

AKRS Equipment Solutions and Zipline Brewing Co. Announce Launch of AKRS Ale

Two local leaders in their respective industries, AKRS Equipment Solutions and Zipline Brewing Co, have joined forces to create a new beer – AKRS Ale – proudly made for the hardworking Midwest farmer. Brewed with Nebraska-grown corn, AKRS Ale weighs in under 100 calories, and finishes crisp and clean with a light refreshing flavor. The beer will release on draft in limited volumes next week, followed by a full-scale launch, including 12-packs of cans, in October.

“AKRS prides itself on delivering superior quality products to its customers,” said Kevin Clark, CEO of AKRS. “So, when we started to conceive of AKRS Ale as a nod to our core customer base, we quickly settled on Zipline as our keystone partner for the project. Just as our customers associate the AKRS name with quality in the field, we want them to look for AKRS Ale when it’s time to wind down and know they’re getting a great American beer brewed with them in mind.”

“We’re extremely excited to be able to work with the AKRS team on this beer,” said Marcus Powers, Co-Founder and CEO of Zipline. “AKRS Ale is about to become the go-to brew for an entire group of folks that love light American beers, but might not think they have any great local options. In this project, we’re bringing together local companies to create a local beer, made with local ingredients, for local farmers.”

About AKRS Equipment Solutions
AKRS Equipment Solutions is the Midwest’s premier John Deere dealership with 27 locations in Nebraska and Kansas. AKRS formed in 2020 when Plains Equipment Group, Stutheit Implement, and Greenline Equipment joined forces to create the most innovative and forward-thinking dealership in the Midwest. Nebraska owned, and locally managed, AKRS provides its customers with a wide selection of new and used equipment to farms, ranches, and small businesses. Find out more at or on Facebook and Instagram at @akrsequipment.

About Zipline Brewing Company
Zipline Brewing Company crafts high quality artisan ales and lagers with precision in Lincoln, Nebraska. Our approach is clean, simple, and direct to help you focus your energy on enjoying our beers and sharing with friends. For more, visit or follow us on, and

Crop Margin Protection Is Another Insurance Tool for Farmers

Crop farmers have multiple ways to protect and insure their investments each year. While revenue protection and yield protection are the most popular in Iowa, farmers can also elect for margin protection.

The margin is defined as the difference between the revenue (yield multiplied by sales price) and the costs of growing the crop. Margin protection insurance is available for corn and soybeans, rice and spring wheat.

An indemnity is paid when the actual margin falls below the trigger margin, which is calculated using county-based yields and input costs calculated by the United States Department of Agriculture’s Risk Management Agency.

The margin protection option is explained in a recent article in the Ag Decision Maker newsletter, written by Alejandro Plastina, associate professor in economics and extension economist at Iowa State University, and Steve Johnson, retired farm management specialist with Iowa State University Extension and Outreach.

While the concept of margin protection is simple, Plastina said the options farmers face can be complex. For example, farmers can choose from 70% coverage up to 85% coverage, which carries a subsidy ranging from 59-44%.

Farmers can also choose “protection factors” with their coverage, which range from 80-120%.

The article explains the different coverage options farmers have, and how coverage might look for a given operation. It also summarizes the different advantages and disadvantages of using margin protection.

Plastina said it’s very important to pay attention to deadlines and timelines if using margin protection. The deadline to purchase margin protection is Sept. 30 prior to the insured crop year.

If an indemnity payment is triggered, it will be issued 21 months from the closing date of purchasing the protection.

Also, because the program relies on county-level averages for yields and national averages for costs, the margin formula may or may not produce results that favor an individual farm.

“Margin protection is another form of insurance available to farmers, but they should closely consider the pros and cons before choosing this option,” said Plastina. “The program protects against a drop in profit margins, but is considered an ‘area policy’ rather than a 'farm-specific policy.'”

Plastina and Johnson both recommend that farmers consult with a crop insurance agent to determine if margin protection best meets their needs and for detailed price quotes. Quick estimates of premiums can be obtained from the USDA Risk Management Agency Margin Protection Premium Estimator and Price Discovery, and to see prices published daily during the price discovery period.

Farm Progress & Pivot Bio Present Innovative Startups at the 2022 Farm Progress Show

The Farm Progress Show continues to be an important event to connect farmers with companies innovating the future of agriculture. This year, ten of the industry’s newest start-ups will be highlighted as a part of Pivot Bio’s Original series, Farm Next. The Farm Progress Show is set for August 30th – September 1st in Boone, Iowa.

The Farm Next program, launched in partnership with Farm Progress, is a joint effort to scout out some of the best startups in agriculture and give voice to their founders and missions. Episodes of the show are available online, and the best ideas will be showcased within Farm Progress Show’s Innovation Experience.

Pivot Bio was a startup just 10 years ago when its co-founders developed a better nitrogen for farmers. That microbial nitrogen has gone from vision to product, having been available to farmers for the last four years. The Farm Next program is the company’s way of paying it forward for the next group of innovators.

 “Farm Next is a search for the next set of innovations that will solve the problems we face today and the problems we’ll face tomorrow, said Karsten Temme, Pivot Bio co-founder and CEO. “It’s what drives us to create great products at Pivot Bio, and we want to create a platform that encourages other entrepreneurs to keep inventing solutions for the next generation.”

The 10 companies featured in Farm Next include a range of new ideas for agriculture. From the Grain Weevil, a robot that can break up crusted grain and keep farmers out of bins, to ClearFlame Engine Technologies' clean energy conversions for diesel engines to run on more affordable ethanol fuel.  Additional startups will continue to be announced on Pivot Bio’s website leading up to the Farm Progress Show. To check out the series visit:

To learn more about this year’s Farm Progress Show or to purchase tickets, visit Admission is $20 for adults, $10 for ages 13-17, and ages 12 and under are free. Those purchasing advance tickets online receive a discount of $5 per adult ticket.

There is still time to respond to USDA’s Conservation Practice Adoption Motivations Survey

USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) will continue collecting responses to the Conservation Practice Adoption Motivations Survey over the coming weeks. Survey recipients may respond securely online at, by phone or mail. A representative for NASS may call producers to set up an interview to assist in the completion of the questionnaire.

In late May, NASS mailed the survey to 731 Iowa farmers and ranchers. A joint project between NASS and USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), this new survey is aimed at better understanding conservation practice adoption and the role of technical and financial assistance. The data will be used to guide the implementation of NRCS programs in the future.

“Gathering information about farmers’ and ranchers’ motivation for and adoption of conservation practices allows USDA to understand the use and awareness of its programs,” said Greg Thessen, Director of the NASS Upper Midwest Regional Field Office. “By continuing to collect survey responses, NASS can ensure we have the most accurate and representative data.”

There are two versions of the survey this year – one requesting information on crop conservation practices and one for confined livestock conservation practices. Data from both versions of the survey will be available later this fall on NASS’s website at

All information reported by individuals will be kept confidential, as required by federal law. For assistance with the survey, producers can call the NASS Upper Midwest Regional Field Office at (800) 772-0825.

United States and Canadian Cattle Inventory Down 2 Percent

All cattle and calves in the United States and Canada combined totaled 111 million head on July 1, 2022, down 2 percent from the 113 million head on July 1, 2021. All cows and heifers that have calved, at 44.5 million head, were down 2 percent from a year ago.
All cattle and calves in the United States as of July 1, 2022, totaled 98.8 million head, down 2 percent from July 1, 2021. All cows and heifers that have calved, at 39.8 million head, were down 2 percent from a year ago.

All cattle and calves in Canada as of July 1, 2022, totaled 12.3 million head, down 3 percent from the 12.6 million head on July 1, 2021. All cows and heifers that have calved, at 4.69 million head, were down 1 percent from a year ago.

This publication is a result of a joint effort by Statistics Canada and NASS to release the number of cattle and calves by class and calf crop for both countries within one publication. This information was requested by the United States cattle industry to provide producers additional information about potential beef supplies. United States inventory numbers were previously released on July 22, 2022. Canadian inventory numbers were previously released on August 23, 2022.

United States and Canadian Hog Inventory Down 1 Percent

United States and Canadian inventory of all hogs and pigs for June 2022 was 86.5 million head. This was down 1 percent from June 2021 and down 6 percent from June 2020. The breeding inventory, at 7.42 million head, was down 1 percent from last year and down 3 percent from 2020. Market hog inventory, at 79.0 million head, was down 1 percent from last year and down 6 percent from 2020. The semi-annual pig crop, at 79.7 million head, was down 1 percent from 2021 and down 5 percent from 2020. Sows farrowing during this period totaled 7.15 million head, down 1 percent from last year and down 6 percent from 2020.

United States inventory of all hogs and pigs on June 1, 2022 was 72.5 million head. This was down 1 percent from June 1, 2021 and down slightly from March 1, 2022. The breeding inventory, at 6.17 million head, was down 1 percent from last year, but up 1 percent from the previous quarter. Market hog inventory, at 66.4 million head, was down 1 percent from last year, and down slightly from last quarter. The pig crop, at 32.9 million head, was down 1 percent from 2021 and down 5 percent from 2020. Sows farrowing during this period totaled 2.99 million head, down 1 percent from 2021 and down 5 percent from 2020.  

Canadian inventory of all hogs and pigs on July 1, 2022 was 13.9 million head. This was down 3 percent from July 1, 2021 and down 2 percent from July 1, 2020. The breeding inventory, at 1.25 million head, was down 2 percent from last year but up slightly from 2020. Market hog inventory, at 12.7 million head, was down 3 percent from last year and down 2 percent from 2020. The semi-annual pig crop, at 14.9 million head, was down 3 percent from 2021, but up 2 percent from 2020. Sows farrowing during this period totaled 1.25 million head, down 2 percent from last year, but up slightly from 2020.

This publication is a result of a joint effort by Statistics Canada and NASS to release the total hogs, breeding, market hogs, sows farrowed, and pig crop for both countries within one publication. This information was requested by the United States hog industry to provide producers additional information about potential hog supplies. United States inventory numbers were previously released on June 29, 2022. Canadian inventory numbers were released on August 23, 2022.

Angus Foundation awards young commercial cattlemen scholarships

The Angus Foundation recently awarded the Commercial Cattlemen Scholarship to four outstanding youth in the beef industry. This scholarship is unique from others offered by the Angus Foundation as it aims to support students outside of the seedstock industry. To apply, youth and/or their parents/guardians must use Angus genetics in their breeding program.

"We’re excited to recognize these four young leaders in the beef industry," said Jaclyn Upperman, executive director of the Angus Foundation. "We understand the value of young commercial cattlemen who utilize Angus genetics, and we’re happy to support them in furthering their education."

Young men and women utilizing Angus sires and dams in their commercial operations are eligible to receive the scholarship. The students should be pursuing an undergraduate degree or vocational program at an accredited institution of higher education. Applications are reviewed by the Angus Foundation’s scholarship selection committee, comprised of two Angus Foundation representatives, two Angus industry representatives and one beef cattle industry leader. Emphasis is placed on the applicant’s knowledge of the cattle industry and their perspective of the Angus breed.

2022 Commercial Cattlemen Scholarship recipients:
Kaitlyn Heaton, Spanish Fork, UT – Utah State University
Tucker Huseman, Ellsworth, KS – West Texas A&M University
Michaela Keller, Valentine, NE – Eastern Wyoming College

Abigail Mosley, Hartville, MO – Truman State University

For more information on the Commercial Cattlemen Scholarship, visit Applications for the next scholarship cycle will be due May 1, 2023. Since 1998, the Angus Foundation has awarded more than $4.2 million in undergraduate and graduate scholarships.

Randy Blach recognized for 2022 Industry Achievement Award at Feeding Quality Forum

Always focused on the data and how it can deliver solutions earned Randy Blach the 2022 Industry Achievement Award, recognized at Feeding Quality Forum in Kansas City.

In 1980, Randy Blach put his Colorado State University animal science degree to work at CattleFax as a market analyst. It was a way to help bring value back to the family ranch near Yuma, Colo., where he would soon return.

"I thought this would be a perfect opportunity to spend a couple of years learning," he says. But CattleFax became a channel for his career passion – which has now served the beef industry for more than 40 years. "Honestly, I just fell in love with my work and the rest is history."

Always focused on the data and how it can deliver solutions, the decades of work earned Blach a second-nature understanding of the market and all that affects it. Intuition, experience and a growing database gave him the tools to show producers what the market demands. Their bottom line consistently guides his company and personal mission to help beef producers remain profitable, doing what they do best.

That kind of servant leadership earned Blach the 2022 Certified Angus Beef (CAB) Industry Achievement Award.

A product of his environment, mentors and board members guided him along the way.

Blach was an analyst for 21 years until the original CattleFax CEO (and 2014 Industry Achievement Award honoree) Topper Thorpe retired in 2001.

With the new role, Blach searched for ways to expand and improve CattleFax and the results it produced for clients.

The staff went from merely reporting to delivering decision-friendly data. After 26 years with CattleFax, Mike Murphy sees the difference in clientele relationships from then to now.

"Randy took us to another level in terms of the intimacy of how we work with our clientele," says Murphy, chief operating officer. "Everything Randy does is more about the CattleFax brand than it is about him."

"It was always about the work and being able to help people and support them," Blach says. "It’s been a love to be able to do that, serve the customer. Hopefully, keep them on the land by helping them make one or two more good decisions on an annual basis."

He gives much of the credit to his support system at home.

"What’s truly important about Randy is that he’s a teacher," says his wife, Karen. "He’s able to share his knowledge and help future generations understand what it's going to take to be successful in the world they’re living in."

"There’s always another challenge ahead," Blach says. Always up for that, he recognizes a kindred team and looks toward the future. "I’ve been blessed to work with a very talented staff and the same company all these years. I feel like my tank’s still full."

Anhydrous Leads Fertilizer Prices Lower

Retail fertilizer prices continue to move lower, according to prices tracked by DTN for the third week of August 2022. For three weeks in a row, all eight of the major fertilizers are less expensive compared to a month ago. After a week in which half the fertilizer prices were notably lower, only one fertilizer was considerably lower this week. DTN designates a significant move as anything 5% or more.

Anhydrous was 7% less expensive compared to last month. The nitrogen fertilizer's average price was $1,336/ton.  The remaining seven fertilizers were just slightly lower. DAP had an average price of $978/ton, MAP $1,026/ton, potash $881/ton, urea $807/ton, 10-34-0 $878/ton, UAN28 $576/ton and UAN32 $676/ton.

On a price per pound of nitrogen basis, the average urea price was at $0.88/lb.N, anhydrous $0.81/lb.N, UAN28 $1.03/lb.N and UAN32 $1.06/lb.N.

Despite lower prices in recent months, all fertilizers continue to be considerably higher in price than one year earlier. MAP is 36% more expensive, 10-34-0 is 39% higher, DAP is 41% more expensive, urea is 45% higher, potash and UAN28 are both 56% more expensive, UAN32 is 61% higher and anhydrous is 80% more expensive compared to last year.

Weekly Ethanol Production for 8/19/2022

According to EIA data analyzed by the Renewable Fuels Association for the week ending August 19, ethanol production increased 0.4% to 987,000 b/d, equivalent to 41.45 million gallons daily. Production was 5.8% more than the same week last year but 1.6% below the five-year average for the week. The four-week average ethanol production volume decreased 0.8% to 1.009 million b/d, equivalent to an annualized rate of 15.47 billion gallons (bg).

Ethanol stocks expanded 1.5% to a 15-week high of 23.8 million barrels. Stocks were 12.2% higher than a year ago and 9.2% above the five-year average. Inventories built in the East Coast (PADD 1) and Midwest (PADD 2) but thinned across the other regions.

The volume of gasoline supplied to the U.S. market, a measure of implied demand, sank 9.8% to a six-week low of 8.43 million b/d (129.29 bg annualized). Demand was 11.9% less than a year ago and 12.8% below the five-year average.

Refiner/blender net inputs of ethanol eased 1.1% to 919,000 b/d, equivalent to 14.09 bg annualized. Net inputs were 0.8% less than a year ago and 1.0% below the five-year average.

There were no imports of ethanol for the second consecutive week. (Weekly export data for ethanol is not reported simultaneously; the latest export data is as of June 2022.)

Purdue Launches Program to Track Meat Sentiment in News, Social Media

Purdue University's Center for Food Demand Analysis and Sustainability has added a meat sentiment dashboard to its roster of free-access food system dashboards. The new dashboard, updated weekly, shows the sentiment and volume of meat and meat alternative mentions in social media and online news.

Users may explore the sentiment and volume of #Meat mentions in all 50 states individually for social media or the entire country in a narrowly or broadly defined time range starting with April 2020 in online news and social media.

"The general perception is more positive than what the average person might guess," said Nicole Olynk Widmar, professor and associate head of agricultural economics at Purdue. During the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, for example, shoppers may have been unhappy with meat availability. Meat was available, but not always exactly what shoppers wanted, when and where they wanted it.

"Perception is going to reflect a few key headlines that may or may not have correctly reflected the state of the industry. This dashboard gives you a chance to look more holistically across the different products," she said.

The dashboard's color-coded sentiment gradient ranges from dark green for 100% positive to dark red for 100% negative. On social media in Indiana from April 2020 to July 2022, for example, poultry had a net sentiment of 49.30, followed by beef at 39.72 and pork at 37.30. Plant-based meat alternatives, meanwhile, rated a barely positive net sentiment at 3.20. The volume of relevant daily posts during this period ranged from a high of 2,955 to a low of 1,485.

In the news nationwide for the same time period, poultry (3 million posts) and pork (2 million posts) both had net sentiments of 32. Beef came out with a positive net sentiment of 29 over 1 million posts. Plant-based meat alternatives had a net sentiment of 26 over 387,000 posts.

Individual companies in various industries have a profit motive to privately collect and analyze data relevant to the demand for their own products. But when it comes to big data and agriculture, "It's just sitting there and not being used as well as it could be," Widmar said.

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