Tuesday, September 20, 2022

Monday September 19 Crop Progress + Ag News


For the week ending September 18, 2022, there were 5.9 days suitable for fieldwork, according to the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Topsoil moisture supplies rated 40% very short, 40% short, 20% adequate, and 0% surplus. Subsoil moisture supplies rated 44% very short, 38% short, 18% adequate, and 0% surplus.

Field Crops Report:

Corn condition rated 18% very poor, 18% poor, 27% fair, 29% good, and 8% excellent. Corn dented was 93%, equal to both last year and the five-year average. Mature was 52%, near 51% last year, and ahead of 46% average. Harvested was 6%, equal to last year, and near 5% average.

Soybean condition rated 13% very poor, 18% poor, 29% fair, 32% good, and 8% excellent. Soybeans dropping leaves was 65%, near 68% last year and 61% average. Harvested was 5%, near 4% both last year and average.

Winter wheat planted was 18%, behind 32% last year and 31% average. Emerged was 1%, near 4% last year and 2% average.

Sorghum condition rated 46% very poor, 20% poor, 16% fair, 14% good, and 4% excellent. Sorghum coloring was 93%, near 96% last year and 92% average. Mature was 24%, behind 34% last year and 31% average. Harvested was 3%, equal to last year, and near 2% average.

Dry edible bean condition rated 4% very poor, 5% poor, 33% fair, 50% good, and 8% excellent. Dry edible beans dropping leaves was 72%, behind 84% last year. Harvested was 26%, well behind 47% last year.

Pasture and Range Report:

Pasture and range conditions rated 50% very poor, 28% poor, 15% fair, 6% good, and 1% excellent.


Widespread rainfall across the State resulted in 5.8 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending September 18, 2022, according to the USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service. Row crop harvest has begun, and other fieldwork included chopping silage, cutting hay, and seeding cover crops. Producers were also preparing equipment and bins for harvest.

Topsoil moisture condition rated 14 percent very short, 28 percent short, 57 percent adequate and 1 percent surplus. Subsoil moisture condition rated 19 percent very short, 31 percent short, 49 percent adequate and 1 percent surplus.

Corn in the dent stage or beyond was 93 percent, 5 days ahead of the 5-year average. Forty-two percent of Iowa’s corn crop was mature, 2 days behind last year but equal to the average. Harvest of the State’s corn crop began with 2 percent complete. Corn condition was 64 percent good to excellent.

Seventy-five percent of soybeans were coloring or beyond, 3 days behind last year. Soybeans dropping leaves were at 30 percent, almost 1 week behind last year and 3 days behind the 5-year average. Soybean condition remained 63 percent good to excellent.

Ninety-four percent of the State’s third cutting of alfalfa hay was complete.

Pasture condition rose slightly to 34 percent good to excellent. Some producers have livestock on dry lots due to lack of water in pastures.

USDA Reports Corn 7% Harvested, Soybeans 3% Harvested

After a faster-than-average start, the U.S. corn harvest slowed last week and fell slightly behind the average pace as of Sunday, Sept. 18, USDA NASS reported in its weekly Crop Progress report on Monday. The soybean harvest was also running behind its average pace, NASS said.

-- Harvest progress: 7% of corn was harvested as of Sunday, up just 2 percentage points from the previous week. That puts the current harvest progress 2 percentage points behind last year and 1 percentage point behind the five-year average of 8%.
-- Crop development: Corn dented was estimated at 87%, 1 percentage point behind the average. Corn mature was estimated at 40%, 5 percentage points behind the five-year average of 45%.
-- Crop condition: 52% of corn was rated in good-to-excellent condition, down 1 percentage point from 53% the previous week and 7 percentage points below last year's rating of 59%.

-- Harvest progress: In its first soybean harvest progress report of the season, NASS estimated that 3% of the crop was harvested as of Sunday, 2 percentage points behind both last year's pace and the five-year average of 5%.
-- Crop development: 42% of soybeans were dropping leaves, 5 percentage points behind the five-year average of 47%.
-- Crop condition: 55% of soybeans were rated in good-to-excellent condition, down 1 percentage point from 56% the previous week and 3 percentage points below last year's rating of 58%.

-- Planting progress: Winter wheat planting moved ahead 11 percentage points last week to reach 21% as of Sunday. That is 1 percentage point ahead of last year and 4 percentage points ahead of the five-year average of 17%.
-- Crop development: 2% of winter wheat was emerged as of Sunday, equal to the five-year average.

-- Harvest progress: Spring wheat harvest moved ahead 9 percentage points last week to reach 94% complete as of Sunday, equal to the five-year average.


 – Jerry Volesky, NE Extension Pasture & Range Specialist

Do you know the quality of the hay or silage that you harvested this past season?   It is important to know how much protein and energy your cows will get when you start feeding, or how much supplement to feed.  Find out by following instructions for sampling and testing.

Maybe the most important step in sampling hay is deciding which bales and stacks should be included in each sample.  Ideally, each sample should include only bales that were produced under similar conditions.

Obviously, the place to start grouping is to separate different types of hay, like alfalfa or CRP or corn stalk or meadow hay.  But each cutting of hay probably is different from the other cuttings also, so there is another separation.  And no two fields or meadows are ever exactly the same, especially if they were cut more than several days apart, this makes another grouping.  And what if part of the field was rained on before it was baled?  The hay made without rain damage will likely be different from hay with rain damage.

After you’ve made all these separations, which could result in quite a few groups of similar bales, then and only then are you ready to sample.  From each group gather a dozen or more cores from different bales or stacks and combine them into one sample.  Be sure to use a good hay probe that can core into at least 12 to 18 inches into the bale.

Finally, send these samples to a certified lab for tests of crude protein and energy content.  With the drought conditions of this past year, testing any annual forages or salvaged dryland crops for nitrates is a good idea.

Then use this information to feed your cattle as profitably as possible.   


The Nebraska Department of Agriculture (NDA) in conjunction with the United States Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) is announcing a ninth confirmed case of highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI). The last case in Nebraska was discovered in April. The ninth farm, a small backyard flock, is in Dawes County.

According to NDA State Veterinarian Dr. Roger Dudley, the flock has been humanely depopulated and disposed of in an approved manner. Additionally, NDA will be establishing a 6.2-mile surveillance zone, as is USDA policy, around the affected premises. Poultry producers in that surveillance zone should know the signs and symptoms of HPAI and notify NDA immediately of sick or dying birds.

HPAI is a highly contagious virus that spreads easily among birds through nasal and eye secretions, as well as manure. The virus can be spread in various ways from flock to flock, including by wild birds, through contact with infected poultry, by equipment, and on the clothing and shoes of caretakers. Wild birds can carry the virus without becoming sick, while domesticated birds can become very sick.
Symptoms of HPAI in poultry include: a decrease in water consumption; lack of energy and appetite; decreased egg production or soft-shelled, misshapen eggs; nasal discharge, coughing, sneezing; incoordination; and diarrhea. HPAI can also cause sudden death in birds even if they aren’t showing any other symptoms. HPAI can survive for weeks in contaminated environments.

NDA is encouraging bird owners to prevent contact between their birds and wildlife and to practice strict biosecurity measures. If producers suspect signs of HPAI in their flock, they should report it to NDA immediately at (402) 471-2351. More information for producers can be found at https://nda.nebraska.gov/animal/avian/index.html or http://healthybirds.aphis.usda.gov.

Enhanced biosecurity helps prevent the introduction and spread of viruses and diseases including HPAI. NDA and USDA have resources available to help poultry owners step up their biosecurity efforts.
• Know the warning signs of infectious bird diseases like HPAI. Be on the lookout for unusual signs of
behavior, severe illness and/or sudden deaths.
• Restrict access to your property and poultry.
• Keep it clean. Wear clean clothes, scrub boots/shoes with disinfectant and wash hands thoroughly before and after contact with your flock.
• If you, your employees, or family have been on other farms, or other places where there is livestock and/or poultry, clean and disinfect your vehicle tires and equipment before returning home.
• Don’t share equipment, tools, or other supplies with other livestock or poultry owners.
• In addition to practicing good biosecurity, all bird owners should prevent contact between their birds and wild birds, making sure wild birds cannot access domestic poultry’s feed and water sources.
• Report sick birds immediately to: NDA at 402-471-2351; the USDA at 866-536-7593; or your veterinarian. Early detection is important to prevent the spread of disease.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the risk to people getting HPAI infections from birds is low. No human cases of avian influenza viruses have been detected in the United States. All poultry entering Nebraska must be accompanied by a VS form 9-3 or Certificate of Veterinary Inspection (CVI, or health certificate). If you are considering moving an animal into Nebraska from an affected state, please call 402- 471-2351 to learn more. Nebraska poultry owners wanting to ship poultry out of state should consult the state veterinarians of the destination states for import requirements.


Growing up in Lincoln, Kennadi Griffis knew she wanted to pursue a career that would provide ample time outside.

“I didn’t want to have a desk job — that's the type of person I am, I needed to be on my feet,” she said. “And I was interested in agricultural sciences. Going through the list of majors, I saw environmental science, and I just knew that would be something that would have me up and moving.”

Her curiosity about the natural environment and the opportunities she has found at the University of Nebraska–Lincoln have propelled the Husker to an international championship in soil judging as a member of Team USA.

Joined by team members from Virginia Tech, North Carolina State and the University of Wisconsin, Platteville, Griffis competed in the International Soil Judging Competition in Stirling, Scotland, in July and placed first against teams from South Korea, Italy, Germany, the United Kingdom and Spain.

“We were confident but still surprised,” Griffis said. “We knew what we were doing, but we were also up against teams, like the U.K., that were more familiar with the soils we’d be working with.”

Griffis, a junior, got involved with the Husker soil judging team after taking a soil evaluation class her freshman year with the team’s coach, Becky Young, professor of practice in agronomy and horticulture. Judith Turk, pedologist in the Conservation and Survey Division of the School of Natural Resources, also coaches the team.

“Dr. Young talked about the team a lot in class and invited us to join,” Griffis said. “I went to one of the meetings just to check it out, and I ended up joining my third semester.”

Soon, she was getting into the soil pits on East Campus and taking additional soil classes to learn more. She added a soil science emphasis to her major. Soil judging takes a complex set of skills to determine soil health, composition and best use, and Griffis immediately enjoyed it.

“The judging is all done in the field, using standard techniques, and you learn from practice,” Griffis said.

Griffis’ first year of competition took her to nationals in Columbus, Ohio, where she placed fourth as an individual and earned her spot on Team USA. She is the first Husker to compete in the international competition.

In preparation for the competition, Griffis spent time reviewing her soil texturing skills, often called ribboning — where water is added to a ball of soil and then pressed between two fingers to form a ribbon. Ribboning helps determine the composition of the soil.

“I practiced texturing to continue to calibrate myself, seeing how much clay and sand and salt was in the samples I had because texturing is a really huge part of the scorecard,” Griffis said.

Griffis and her teammates also met over Zoom a handful of times to familiarize themselves with the international soil scorecard.

Once in Scotland, competitors spent four days in classes on Scottish soils, which contain more organic matter, are sandier and have different coloring than the Midwestern soils Griffis normally works with. Team USA also had to get to know one another to become a cohesive, competitive group.

“Meeting them in person was completely different than over Zoom,” Griffis said. “It's kind of crazy going from not really knowing people to having to work on a team together. One of the things that we did was hang out a lot after our lectures and after our practice during the day, to become friends. Forming that camaraderie and getting to know each other on a personal level helped us a lot, I think.”

The day of competition, each team member took on a task that aligned best with their strengths, and Griffis’ previous texturing practice was put to use as she was charged with evaluating color and texture.

“It was really cool to do the competition there,” she said. “You might only walk five or 10 minutes between two pits and they’d be completely different, depending on their landscape position. We saw a lot of different things.”

Over the course of a day, the team worked from pit to pit, spending about an hour at each, and their diligence paid off when they were announced as the winners at the opening ceremonies of the 2022 World Congress of Soil Science in Glasgow the following day.

It was a challenging and fun experience — one that she never expected to have.

“I really had no idea what soil judging was before I came to UNL,” Griffis said. “Now, I’ve made so many friends and connections, and those connections are really the biggest thing. I’ve already made plans to go to Wisconsin in December to see my teammates, and I’m keeping in touch with someone I made friends with on the Australian team. She’s going to come visit here.”

Naig Welcomes Nominations for Local Food and Farm Program Advisory Council

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig today welcomed Iowans and interested organizations to nominate qualified individuals to serve on the Local Food and Farm Program Advisory Council. The Council exists to support and advise statewide efforts to increase the availability of locally grown, raised, and produced foods.

“One of my top priorities as Secretary of Agriculture is expanding markets for Iowa farmers internationally, domestically, and locally. We have an opportunity here in Iowa to help shorten supply chains by increasing the availability of locally grown, raised, and produced meat, dairy, fruits, vegetables, and other foods,” said Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Mike Naig. “The Local Food and Farm Advisory Council helps guide the strategy and efforts to increase the availability local foods across the state and we are looking for passionate individuals who care about local foods to serve on the Council."

Nominations are being sought for the following positions:
    A livestock producer
    A poultry producer
    A dairy producer
    A fruit or vegetable producer
    A meat or dairy processor
    A fruit or vegetable processor
    A manager of a wholesale distributor of local food or food hub manager
    A grocery store engaged in the purchase and marketing of local food
    A food service provider that distributes food to a K-12 institution or early care provider
    A food service provider that distributes food to an institution that does not serve school children
    An attorney practicing in the areas of food and agricultural law
    Two persons engaged in local or regional community food organizations such as food banks or farmers’ markets
    An employee of a government entity who specializes in nutrition programs

Revitalizing and expanding membership of the Local Food and Farm Advisory Council was a recommendation of the Farm to Table Task Force in 2021, co-chaired by Secretary Naig and Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Vice President John Lawrence. During the 2022 Iowa legislative session, this recommendation was enacted by the Iowa General Assembly.

To nominate an individual, nominators should email a brief letter (100 words or less) summarizing the nominee’s experience and qualifications in the area of local foods to Colin Tadlock at colin.tadlock@iowaagriculture.gov. Nominators should include the nominee’s name, title, organization, position they are being nominated for, and contact information for consideration. Nominations must be submitted by October 15.

Off-Farm Income Increasingly Important for Agricultural and Rural Economy

U.S. farmers’ and ranchers’ increasing dependence on off-farm employment and income reveals the growing economic interconnection of rural communities and surrounding cities. According to a study by researchers at the University of Missouri, 82% of U.S. farm household income now comes from off-farm sources. The study was commissioned by CoBank and completed in partnership with CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange.

Most farmers cited reliable income as the top reason for off-farm employment, as one-half of farm households have negative farm income in a typical year. Health and retirement benefits were also cited as keys reasons for off-farm jobs within farm households.

Among the study’s key findings is that rural communities have increasingly diverse economies, and success within a rural community’s agricultural sector is largely dependent on other sectors of the regional economy at large. Today, only 6.5% of workers in rural counties are employed in agriculture, compared to 15.4% in 1970. The largest single source of employment in rural areas is the service sector, which accounts for 57.4% of all jobs. The majority of residents in farm-dependent counties are commuting to jobs outside of their home counties. As a result, rural and urban communities have grown economically closer as workers and businesses engage with each other across multiple counties.

“The rural economy has become more diverse and more complex than it was even 15 years ago,” said Dan Kowalski, vice president of CoBank’s Knowledge Exchange. “What that means for those of us who serve rural communities is we have to evolve our understanding of what fuels rural economies and what these communities need to succeed and thrive. In many cases, the historical concept of ‘rural’ no longer applies.”

The 2019 population of non-metro, or rural, counties was 46 million, or 14% of the U.S. population. Most of that population, 30 million or 65%, lived in counties adjacent to metro areas. The close ties between metro and non-metro counties reflects how the nation’s urban and rural communities have grown economically, and geographically, closer over the past 50 years.

Population loss has been a challenge for counties that have remained farm-dependent and have been less able to diversify their economies. Counties that were farm-dependent in 2015 had seen population decline by 4% from 1974-2019, on average. Conversely, counties that were not farm-dependent in 2015 had grown 55% in population over the same period.

Off-farm jobs are especially critical for young and beginning farmers as they build their businesses. Debt-to-asset ratio analysis and other research shows that off-farm jobs reduce financial risks, which is especially important for younger farmers who face higher debt needs as they grow their business.

The study concludes that economically resilient rural communities have regionally connected workforces and diverse industries to support a range of employment opportunities. These communities are better positioned to sustain young farmers and principal operators alike.

August Milk Production in the United States up 1.6 Percent

Milk production in the United States during August totaled 19.0 billion pounds, up 1.6 percent from August 2021. Production per cow in the United States averaged 2,018 pounds for August, 34 pounds above August 2021. The number of milk cows on farms in the United States was 9.43 million head,
11,000 head less than August 2021, but 8,000 head more than July 2022.

IOWA: Milk production in Iowa during August 2022 totaled 494 million pounds, up 7 percent from the previous August according to the latest USDA, National Agricultural Statistics Service – Milk Production report. The average number of milk cows during August, at 238,000 head, was 2,000 more than last month and up 13,000 from August 2021. Monthly production per cow averaged 2,075 pounds, up 20 pounds from last August.

U.S. Custom Harvesters Support Legislation for Streamlined CDL Requirements

U.S. Custom Harvesters has endorsed legislation introduced by U.S. Senator Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) that will remove burdensome government regulations and simplify the process of hiring CDL drivers, especially during a difficult labor market in the agriculture industry.

The legislation focuses on a law passed in 2012 called Entry-Level Driver Training (ELDT), a federal safety training program. The final rulemaking went into effect this year and requires new drivers seeking a Commercial Driver’s License (CDL) to complete ELDT in addition to existing state regulations and requirements. ELDT training classes range from $450 to $8,500 and can take up to 20 days to complete. The additional time and financial investment from custom harvesters adds to the burden of finding a qualified workforce when there is a nationwide trucker shortage of 80,000 drivers according to the American Trucking Association.

Rounds’ legislation, the Trucking Regulations Unduly Constricting Known Service-providers (TRUCKS) Act, will allow states to issue a new “Small Business Restricted CDL” so ELDT requirements will not affect small businesses with nine CDLs or less. The TRUCKS Act will allow states to exempt employees of agriculture-related industries, including custom harvesters, from ELDT requirements to obtain their CDL.

The TRUCKS act will protect small businesses from these constricting regulations so they can fill positions in a timely manner and remain competitive in the industry. “This legislation eases the burden on small trucking companies, agricultural producers, school districts and local units of government. It also gives power back to the states so they can decide their own rules of the road,” said Rounds.

“We’re appreciative of Senator Rounds for recognizing the burden of duplicative regulation on our industry. The additional time and financial investment required by ELDT creates obstacles for harvesters to meet the demand of farmers. We support safety measures, however, when each state has existing strict safety measures and regulations in place that our members comply with, ELDT is unnecessary bureaucratic red tape,” said JC Schemper, USCHI board president and co-owner of Schemper Harvesting, a multi-generation family owned and operated custom harvesting business.

In addition to U.S. Custom Harvesters’ endorsement, this legislation is supported by the Associated School Boards of South Dakota and is co-sponsored by the by Senators John Hoeven (R-N.D.), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.) and Kevin Cramer (R-N.D.).

“Custom harvesters across Kansas are overregulated by federal rulemakers who have never worked on a harvest crew,” said Marshall. “The ELDT requirements for new drivers are burdensome to small trucking companies, and this legislation is a common sense reform to eliminate barriers for small businesses, farmers, and custom harvesters crews who are already hard pressed to find an adequate amount of drivers.”

 “Our legislation provides important regulatory relief and flexibility by allowing exemptions for agriculture, small businesses and state and local governments. This will help ensure farmers, ranchers and other small businesses, as well as school districts and other government entities have access to the reliable and affordable transportation services they need while ensuring safety on our road,” said Hoeven.

“With the current supply chain issues and shortage of truck drivers nationwide at a time of tremendous demand, the last thing the transportation industry needs is more overbearing, bureaucratic red tape placed on them by the Biden Administration,” said Cramer.

JBS to Pay $20 Million in Pork Price-Fixing Settlement

(AP) -- JBS has agreed to pay $20 million to settle a lawsuit with consumers that accused the giant meat producer of conspiring with other meat companies to inflate the price of pork, which will only reinforce some of the ongoing concerns about how the lack of competition in the industry affects prices.

A federal judge in Minnesota approved the latest settlement in these price-fixing lawsuits last week. But the judge also ruled that nearly $7 million of the settlement will go to the plaintiffs' lawyers for their work in the case. It's not clear yet how much individual consumers who bought pork between 2009 and last year might receive out of the remaining $13 million.

This pork lawsuit is one of several price-fixing lawsuits making their way through the courts. Meat producers have also been accused of inflating beef and chicken prices, and several multimillion-dollar settlements have been announced in those cases. The meat companies have defended their pricing practices even though there have been a number of settlements in these cases.

Previously, JBS agreed to pay restaurants and caterers $12.75 million as part of a different settlement in this pork lawsuit, and Smithfield Foods agreed to pay two different groups of pork purchasers $83 million and $42 million in two different settlements in the case.

Officials at the Brazilian company's U.S. headquarters in Greeley, Colorado, didn't immediately respond to questions about the latest settlement on Monday, but JBS didn't admit any wrongdoing as part of the deal. The lead attorneys for the plaintiffs also didn't immediately respond to questions.

The pork lawsuit remains pending against other major producers including Hormel and Tyson Foods and the Agri Stats database company they allegedly used to share confidential information about price, capacity and demand. JBS agreed to cooperate with the case against those other companies as part of the settlement.

The lawsuit accuses the major meat processors, who together control more than 70% of pork production nationwide, of working cooperatively to limit the supply of hogs and inflate prices.

The White House, several agricultural trade groups and a number of prominent members of Congress have all questioned the industry's pricing practices although the meat producers argue that supply and demand factors, not anticompetitive behavior, drive prices.

The Justice Department has been looking into allegations of price fixing in the industry at least since 2020, but it hasn't provided updates on its investigation.

The Biden administration has announced several efforts to increase competition in the meat industry to help reduce prices including a $1 billion program to help establish and expand independent slaughterhouses. And the White House has tweaked administrative rules to make it easier for farmers and ranchers to report concerns or sue over anticompetitive behavior.

The judge who approved the settlement last Wednesday said awarding the lawyers involved 33% of the proceeds, as he did here, was in line with other similar class action lawsuits.

DFA Secures $45 Million in USDA Funding for Pilot Project

Dairy Farmers of America (DFA), a national dairy cooperative with more than 11,500 family farmers, has been selected to receive up to $45 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture to scale methane emissions reductions and increase soil carbon sequestration on U.S. dairy farms as well as develop and market climate-smart, low-carbon dairy products.

The grant was one of 70 announced on September 14, 2022, through the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Partnership for Climate Smart Commodities program, which awarded $2.8 billion in funding to pilot projects that will help build and expand opportunities for consumers to purchase food grown or produced in a climate-friendly way.

"We're thrilled to receive a Partnerships for Climate-Smart Commodities grant from USDA and appreciate their support for accelerating adoption of innovative, sustainable agricultural practices on our member farms as well as developing and marketing low-carbon dairy products to meet growing consumer demand," says Kevin O'Donnell, senior vice president of sustainability at Dairy Farmers of America (DFA).

"Given eco-efficiency gains and other leadership to date, we know that dairy is part of the solution to climate change. These funds will allow DFA to build on this foundation, using our Cooperative business model to ensure benefits are captured at our member farms. This will allow us an opportunity to establish a more circular economy where we can increase crop resilience in dairy production, innovate more widespread climate and related product solutions faster, and better position us to continue providing sustainable nutrition to families around the world."

Partners joining DFA in this project include Dairy One Cooperative, Inc., MyFarm, LLC, Dairy Nutrition Management and Consulting, LLC, Nestlé, Mars, Unilever, Barry Callebaut, Dairy Management Inc., U.S. Dairy Export Council, National Milk Producers Federation, Global Dairy Platform, Innovation Center for U.S. Dairy, CoBank and AGPROfessionals.

NCBA Seeking Summer Public Policy Interns for D.C. Office

The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), in conjunction with the Public Lands Council (PLC), is now accepting applications for public policy internships in the NCBA Washington, D.C., office for summer 2023.

Interns will have the opportunity to engage with NCBA and PLC staff on several fronts, including policy, communications and membership, and will work closely with the D.C. lobbying and regulatory teams to advance policies important to the beef and sheep industries.

Key responsibilities for public policy interns include participating in lobbying efforts, communicating with NCBA and PLC members, reviewing Federal Register notices, participating in meetings with federal agencies, collaborating with Congressional and agency staff, and other duties as assigned.

Applicants must be a junior or senior undergraduate student, or a graduate student. A background in agriculture or the beef industry is preferred. Applicants must have a minimum GPA of 3.0 and be available for the duration of the internship (May 2023 – August 2023). Successful applicants will also have excellent research, writing and communications skills.

NCBA and PLC are affiliate organizations working on behalf of cattle producers and ranching families across the country. NCBA represents cattle producers and advocates for federal policy while PLC specifically represents livestock producers that hold federal grazing permits. Together, NCBA and PLC represent the cattle and sheep industries and producers who operate on both public and private lands.

Interested students should visit the careers page of ncba.org. Questions about the internship program may be directed to Justyn Tedder (jtedder@beef.org).

Upcoming RFD-TV Cattlemen to Cattlemen Episode to Focus on the Importance of Beef and Corn Exports

Later this month, viewers of Cattlemen to Cattlemen on RFD-TV will get a firsthand look at the value of corn and beef exports at the Port of New Orleans. In 2021, beef and port exports accounted for 537 million bushels of corn usage.

“The U.S. is the world’s leading exporter of corn and when you pair that with the success of exports of the beef industry, it is an important demand driver for corn farmers,” said National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) incoming President and Minnesota farmer Tom Haag. “Being at the Port of New Orleans for this episode was a great backdrop because of the amount of agricultural goods and product that goes out of this port.”

Panel participants include Tom Haag, incoming NCGA President and Minnesota farmer; National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) President and Minnesota farmer Don Schiefelbein; NCGA Market Development Action Team Chair and Colorado corn and beef producer Troy Schneider; and Kyla Hamilton, a Texas corn and beef producer who also serves on MDAT. Special interview segments are also a part of the show this year, with Janine Mansour who is head of business development for the Port of New Orleans and Dean Myers, Chair-Elect of the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF).

NCGA’s Market Development Action Team (MDAT) funded this initiative. The episode will air on Tuesday, September 27th on RFD-TV at 8:30 PM ET. You can watch last year’s episode here.

NCBA's Cattlemen to Cattlemen is a television show for cattlemen created by cattlemen. Colorado cattle producer Kevin Ochsner hosts the show.

PepsiCo, ADM Agreement to Support Regenerative Ag Practices

ADM and PepsiCo announced a groundbreaking 7.5-year strategic commercial agreement to closely collaborate on projects that aim to significantly expand regenerative agriculture across their shared North American supply chains.

This strategic partnership is expected to reach up to 2 million acres by 2030, and represents a trailblazing effort by two global companies that share ambitious carbon reduction goals.

The companies' capabilities span the food and agriculture value chains, creating a unique, large-scale platform to support farmers' transition to regenerative agriculture, while building their resilience to climate change.

The long-term agreement will initially enroll corn, soy and wheat farmers across Kansas, Minnesota, Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and Nebraska, with the opportunity for future expansion, to increase visibility across the value chain and integrate a range of multi-year farmer-first regenerative agriculture initiatives, including cover crops, reduced tillage, nutrient management, diverse rotations, and responsible pesticide use. The companies plan to share resources and collaborate to create value throughout the supply chain by providing participants with technical and financial assistance, offering access to peer regenerative farming networks, hosting educational field days, and tracking results using trusted, third-party measurement systems.

Reaching the strategic partnership's goals could eliminate 1.4 million metric tons of greenhouse gasses - equivalent to the amount of electricity used to power 275,000 homes per year - at the farm level, while creating meaningful shared value directly for farmers.

Randy Dickhut Retires, New Senior Vice President of Real Estate Operations Announced  

Farmers National Company has announced that Randy Dickhut, senior vice president of real estate operations, will retire Sept. 30 after more than 20 years of dedicated work and leadership within the company. Randy began his career with Farmers National Company in 2002 as a farm manager in west-central Illinois.  

In 2006, he moved to Omaha, Neb., when promoted to vice president of client relations, and will complete his tenure with the company as the senior vice president of real estate operations. Dickhut also has served as a valued member of the executive team and on the board of directors.

Farmers National Company is pleased to announce that Paul Schadegg, western area sales manager, has been promoted to senior vice president of real estate operations. Paul brings a wealth of knowledge and expertise to his new role with 20+ years of real estate and farm management experience, including a successful track record in both real estate sales and business development.  

In his new role, Schadegg will lead Farmers National Company’s strategy for real estate and appraisal, as well as the company’s Hunting Lease Network.  

“I'm excited to move into this new role and leverage my real estate experience to continue the progress and success of Farmers National Company’s real estate operations," he said. Schadegg’s profile can be found at www.FarmersNational.com/PaulSchadegg.  

"I want to thank Randy for more than 20 years of service to Farmers National Company and congratulate him on his upcoming retirement,” said Clayton Becker, president. “We will certainly miss his experience and consistent media presence as an industry expert on the latest trends in the farmland market. I’d also like to congratulate Paul on his appointment as senior vice president of real estate operations to replace Randy. Paul possesses an abundance of knowledge and experience, and we are looking forward to his continued leadership within the company.”

Nutrien Ag Solutions - Northern High Plains Division Joins NSP Industry Partner Program

National Sorghum Producers is pleased to announce Nutrien Ag Solutions - Northern High Plains Division has joined the NSP Industry Partner program as a sponsor.

“We welcome Nutrien Ag Solutions - Northern High Plains Division to our industry program and thank them for their support of the sorghum industry through this partnership,” NSP Industry Relations Director Jamaca Battin said. “Nutrien provides critical products and services to sorghum farmers, and we look forward to continuing to work together in this new capacity on behalf of sorghum farmers.”

Nutrien Ag Solutions - Northern High Plains Division joins NSP as a Partner level sponsor. Nutrien is the world’s largest supplier of crop inputs and and services and its Northern High Plains Division provides growers with unparalleled access to high-performing inputs, innovative technologies and personalized agronomic expertise.

“Nutrien Ag Solutions - Northern High Plains is proud to partner with NSP as we believe both organizations strive to provide our producers with the best ROI through a sustainable sorghum crop,” Nutrien’s Sales Agronomist Matt McCune said. “The advancements NSP has brought to the sorghum producer mirror what our Dynagro and Loveland products aim to provide for our customers.”

Support from industry partners like Nutrien Ag Solutions - Northern High Plains Division helps NSP better advocate, promote and defend sorghum farmers and the industry. For more information about the NSP Industry Partner program, contact Jamaca Battin at jamaca@sorghumgrowers.com, or visit SorghumGrowers.com/industry-partners.

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