Tag Archives: crops

LINCOLN, NEB. – As we move into the fall of 2020 with the COVID-19 pandemic still upon us, it is a year we won’t soon forget. Students may or may not be back in the classroom and we all may be either working from home or may be back at the office. But farmers and ranchers are working to move cattle and to start on harvest.

As the uncertainty of 2020 lingers through the year, this is a time when we especially need to slow down and pay more attention on farms, ranches, and on roads and highways.

Here are a few tips to remember as we see, large slow-moving machines on our roads coming in and out of fields across the state.

  1. Farmers: Get plenty of rest and slow down to avoid accidents on the farm. Don’t hurry through equipment repairs, take your time with backing up large pieces of machinery, keep your hands away and don’t wear loose clothing around moving auger parts.

  1. Drivers: Drive without distractions. We hear it all the time: Don’t text or check your smartphone while driving. But distracted driving continues to be a leading cause of vehicular accident and during harvest time it could be especially dangerous as there may be more slow-moving vehicles on our roads and highways.

  1. Farmers: If you’re driving farm equipment on public roads, it’s especially important that you’re clearly marked so motorists can see you in time to slow down — considering you’re probably driving less than 25 MPH. Make sure your lights are working and that all reflecting tape and slow-moving vehicle (SMV) emblems are properly placed. Remember to wipe down some of these safety features if your equipment is dusty to ensure they can be seen. Also use flashers on public roads.

  1. Drivers: If you are following behind a slow-moving vehicle, please play it safe and wait to safely pass and remember slow moving vehicles usually go from one field or pasture to another and turning may take extra time, so be patient. Most farmers will do their best to create space so you can pass, but awareness of where you’re driving and patience on everybody’s part is the best way to keep the roads safe during harvest season.

In the fall, harvest time can be one of the busiest and most dangerous seasons of the year for the agriculture industry. Remember, we share our roads and highways and in 2020 if we work together, we can keep everyone safe.

MANHATTAN, Kan. — EPA announced the interim decision for atrazine, marking the end of the registration review process and clearing the way for continued use of a key herbicide for Kansas farmers. The Kansas Corn Growers Association (KCGA) is a founding member of the Triazine Network, a coalition of organizations from a variety of crops across the nation that advocates for science-based regulatory decisions for the triazine herbicides. KCGA CEO Greg Krissek said today’s announcement is a positive step forward for atrazine, a product that provides needed weed control and is a valued tool in conservation tillage practices like no-till farming. Krissek and Missouri Corn CEO Gary Marshall, who are co-chairs of the Triazine Network, participated in a round table with EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler today near Springfield, MO.

“We were pleased with the announcement at today’s round table discussion with Administrator Wheeler which affirmed the continued use of atrazine as well as simazine and propazine. This is a culmination of years of work,” Krissek said. “The next step for atrazine is the Endangered Species Act review, and we will continue to work with EPA as the agency prepares its biological evaluation for the ESA review that is expected to be published with a comment period this fall. Our organizations will remain closely involved in these regulatory actions surrounding atrazine and the triazine herbicides.”

The registration review has been underway since 2013, and this decision is a positive outcome for growers.

“Today’s news provides much needed regulatory certainty for farmers during a time when few things are certain,” said Triazine Network Co-Chair Gary Marshall. “We appreciate today’s announcement from EPA Administrator Wheeler. We thank the agency on behalf of the farmers who rely on atrazine to fight problematic weeds and employ conservation tillage methods to reduce soil erosion and improve water and wildlife habitat. “

Atrazine ranks second in widely used herbicides that help farmers control weeds that rob crops of water and nutrients. Utilized for over 60 years, atrazine is the most researched herbicide in history and has a proven safety record. Today’s announcement concludes the registration review process where EPA is required to periodically re-evaluate existing pesticides under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA). The next step for the triazines is a draft biological evaluation required under the Endangered Species Act (ESA), which is expected to be published in October.

“This isn’t the last review of atrazine. In fact, the Endangered Species Act review will be key to the future of atrazine as well as other crop protection tools. Moving forward, we remain vigilant in ensuring the agencies involved utilize high-quality, scientific studies,” stated Marshall. “The EPA has said they will utilize the best available research, first in a letter the Triazine Network in 2019 and again today. Our stance has always been sound, credible science must win. We appreciate these commitments, and EPA must hold true to them in the ESA evaluation.”

Approved for use 1958, atrazine has been extensively reviewed by EPA and others over the decades and across administrations. The final ESA assessment is slated to be released in 2021.

TOPEKA, Kan. — Renew Kansas Biofuels Association submitted written comments to Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) regarding the agency’s notice of public hearing on its proposal to revoke an existing regulation limiting the Reid Vapor Pressure (RVP) of ethanol-blended motor vehicle fuel sold in the Kansas City area during the summer months.

“E15 fuel could be made available to consumers in Kansas City by simply revoking this unnecessary regulation,” Renew Kansas President and CEO Ron Seeber said. “Allowing the sale of higher blends of ethanol fuel in the Kansas City area will directly benefit fuel retailers, consumers, farmers and the Kansas ethanol industry. This rule change presents a solid win for Kansas.”

The regulation prohibiting higher blends of biofuels being sold in Kansas City during the summer months dates back to the 1971 federal Clean Air Act where both Kansas and Missouri entered into Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved State Implementation Plans (SIP) to assist Kansas City in attaining compliance with the national ambient air quality standard (NAAQS) for ozone.

The federal Clean Air Act limits the RVP of gasoline fuel to 9.0 psi during the summer. However, for blends of vehicle fuel containing up to 10 percent ethanol, a one-pound waiver of the RVP is allowed (RVP of up to 10.0 psi). In 2019, EPA interpreted the RVP of E15 fuel (15 percent ethanol) to be substantially similar to that of E10, and extended the one-pound RVP waiver to E15. However, the restriction in K.A.R. 28-19-719 still prohibits Kansas City retailers from selling E15 during the summer.

E15 is a clean, safe, and low-cost vehicle fuel with slightly lower evaporative emissions than E10. EPA first approved the use of E15 in vehicles in 2011. It is approved for use in more than 90 percent of the cars on the road today (all vehicles made in model year 2001 and after). In fact, both Travelers Motor Club, and Association Motor Club Marketing – reporting more than 20 million members nationwide – have endorsed E15 as a safe and affordable fuel.

E15 typically costs 3 to 10 cents per gallon less than E10 and gasoline. Allowing the sale of E15 year-round in Kansas City will provide consumers in that high-volume area more options to purchase a high quality fuel at a lower price. In fact, KDHE estimates that allowing consumers the opportunity to purchase E15 fuel in the Kansas City area could save them over $13 million annually.

Another private crop forecast predicts a record corn harvest for 2020. Main Street Data forecast the 2020 national corn yield at 178.1 bushels per acre for corn.

Despite setbacks from storms and a lack of rain, the forecast still surpasses the last national yield record, set in 2017 at 176.6 bushels per acre. However, Iowa corn yield was reduced further, thanks to derecho damage and a lack of rain. With Iowa and neighboring states reeling from the August 10 derecho, a lack of rain is now worsening yield forecasts for corn.

Main Street forecasts Iowa corn loss at 185 million bushels. This puts Iowa’s final yield forecast at 195.7 bushels per acre, compared to the Iowa record of 203 bushels per acre. With no derecho damage and good soil moisture, Indiana forecasts for both corn and beans may hit records, conversely, showing how yield can vary widely between states.

  • Cooler weather
  • Setting crop insurance on HRW
  • Corn & bean rally
  • Pull back in the markets today-was that surprise?
  • Cattle market thought of an ugly day…but finished higher on the feeder cattle
  • Short term low in place
  • Box beef lower Friday & Monday-seasonally shouldn’t be surprising
  • Demand how much more do we have with the college games etc being taken away

CHESTERFIELD, Mo. — The Soil Health Partnership is dedicating three days to wheat’s role in soil health during Wheat Week September 8-10, 2020. Each day will consist of a virtual field day that begins at 9:00 am Central Time.

“We have partnered with several organizations, along with farmers in Minnesota and Kansas, to spotlight the unique benefits of wheat,” said Anna Teeter, SHP Minnesota Field Manager. “Diversifying crop rotations with a small grain like wheat can provide opportunities to expand conservation practices.”

The first day will focus on why and how wheat industry groups are investing in soil health and striving for sustainability. Day two will feature SHP partner farmers in Kansas, Justin Knopf and Mike Jordan. Day three includes SHP partner farmers in Minnesota, Glenn Hjelle and Trinity Creek Ranch.

This provides the opportunity to hear from growers who have experienced challenges in their operations and are incorporating effective soil health practices to mitigate them, as well as how growers persevere with conservation practices in diverse growing conditions.

“Holding this virtually allows us to have impactful conversations with growers looking for guidance on soil health practices well beyond our area,” said Keith Byerly, SHP Kansas & Nebraska Field Manager. “When it comes to soil health, we find that while the practice may be different, the principle is still the same. So, no matter the region you farm, there are beneficial takeaways.”

To register for one or all three days go to: https://www.soilhealthpartnership.org/events/. If you cannot attend the live event, still register for access to the recording of the field day.

Scouts are on the Pro Farmer Crop Tour trail this week to get a look at corn and soybean crops in the Midwest. They’ll also get a look at crop damages from the derecho storm a week ago.

The violent thunderstorms traveled over 700 miles from Nebraska to Indiana. The storm was so powerful, as of last Thursday, more than 300,000 people hadn’t had power restored in northern Illinois and Iowa, which was the hardest-hit state.

The Washington Post says the 70 mile-per-hour winds hit more than 10 million acres of corn and soybeans in Iowa, adding more difficulty to an already challenging year for farmers. Up to 43 percent of the state’s corn and soybean crop suffered some level of damage from the storms, a big blow to the $10 billion agriculture industry that anchors Iowa’s economy.

Iowa Agribusiness Network Farm Broadcaster Dustin Hoffmann talked with Farm Director Susan Littlefield about the damage they saw in Iowa…

Hoffmann said many were surprised by the lack of green snap…

The damage was so extensive that it was even visible on weather satellites that were used to track the storm. Meteorologist Steven Bowen said on Twitter that “This has all the makings of a billion-dollar impact on agriculture in Iowa and Illinois. With that said, it will take some time for farmers to determine how much of the downed crops are salvageable for harvest.”