Local farmers were praised Wednesday for the work they do to feed the world.
Local Agriculture News
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When a group of dairy families opened Idaho Milk Products a decade ago, the company faced a murky future at best. Ten years later, after a $30 million plant expansion, it looks like the gamble is paying off.
We received 1.7 inches of rain at my house in the last week. We started chopping silage Monday. We opened the silage field by harvesting eight rows around the outside and one pass down the middle. There were spots in the field that had standing water in the spring that only yielded 50 to 60 bushels, or less.
The farmhouse framing project is coming along. We finished the sheathing of first-story walls and built the interior walls. We set floor joists and subflooring for the second story and plan to have all the walls up by Monday afternoon. And then we will start on the garage. The trusses are ordered and will be ready to go in a couple weeks.
These weeks seem to be flying past faster than they ever have. As they say, life is rough getting old. We had a productive week going in multiple different directions. We were able to wrap up our project in Muncie. That job was not complicated. Just takes longer because of the commute to the site. We also got a drainage ditch drained for the local county surveyor. That is a stinky job, dealing with all the rotten cornstalks, which all of us as farmers need to do a better job of keeping that stuff out of our ditches and streams. It cost a lot of money to remove and clean up and does all a lot more good in the field and not in the water.
Well, Mark won and we did indeed start on Monday. Moisture ranged from 24% to 20%, but the big surprise was the test weight at 62 pounds. We had a few hiccups, but those are all ironed out going forward. Now we are ready for the next Monday, where we will begin in earnest with the majority of the corn crop.
TOWANDA, Ill. — It was no surprise for those doing the 2019 McLean County corn yield estimates this year that corn planted in April will likely yield considerably better than that planted in June.
BRILLION, Wis. – The benefits in reducing farming’s climate-change footprint are immensely enhanced by no-till farming, according to an article by Nicholas Staropoli in the June 2016 edition of the Genetic Literacy Project. Fuel costs saved by running the tractor less can reduce fuel usage by as much as 80 percent, one estimate suggests.
SANTA ROSA — Elated Sonoma County Winegrowers announced a double-header achievement for the environment at a press conference on Sept. 12 at their Santa Rosa headquarters. Not only have the more than 1,800 members reached 99% certified sustainable vineyards, but they will build on their sustainability leadership by becoming the first wine region to participate in California’s pilot Climate First Certification program.
Senate Democrats moved to block appropriations funding this week as Congress deliberates over an annual funding continuing resolution (CR) needed to keep the government operating past Sept. 30.
Pork processing plants will have fewer federal inspectors, and could have faster line speeds, under a controversial rule the U.S. Department of Agriculture finalized this week.Inspectors reject live animals that look sick, or carcass sections that look suspect. "Under the new rule, just announced, pork companies have a new option," Dan Charles reports for NPR. "They can hire their own people to help out. These company employees would be at each inspection station, weeding out any problematic pig parts before the USDA inspector gives the meat a green light. There will be fewer USDA inspectors in the plant because they won't have as much to do."The new rule also eliminates limits on slaughter line speeds. Critics worry that will injure more workers, but industry representatives say it won't. Casey Gallimore, director of regulatory and scientific affairs at the North American Meat Institute, a lobbying group, "says that the new rules will allow plants to try out new ways of operating that could be more efficient," Charles reports. "She says it won't affect food safety. The additional company employees will be highly trained, and USDA inspectors still will look at every piece of pork that goes into the food supply."Critics say company employees aren't required to have extra inspection training, and worry they won't be as aggressive as USDA inspectors in looking for problems. Patty Lovera, an industry critic with the nonprofit Food and Water Watch, told Charles that "to ask company employees to be under that pressure, of pulling product out and costing their employer money, is a lot to ask."The new rules will go into effect in two months, and pork processors have several months to decide whether to switch to the new inspection system, Charles reports.
Representatives with the state’s largest agricultural groups say proposed changes to livestock siting rules would cause further harm to Wisconsin’s embattled farm industry.
SAVOY, Ill. — With estimates for the lowest price for soybeans and the lowest yields for corn in five years in Illinois, University of Illinois ag economist Gary Schnitkey predicted 2019 losses on both crops for most of the state’s farmers at the university’s Agronomy Day Aug. 22.