COMMENTED ON BY DANIEL LOOKER
Vilsack defends ag on Earth Day By: 04/22/2014 @ 6:13pm

With Congress doing little to address climate change, those who care about the issue are looking to states and cities to act. So, on the 44th Earth Day, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack, found an…

USDA Fosters $150 Million Rural Fund By: 04/21/2014 @ 4:34pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Monday announced the formation of a new investment program designed to help rural businesses grow.The Advantage Capital Agribusiness Fund will use about $150 million to help…

Congress Members Try to Rescue GMOs By: 04/09/2014 @ 5:47pm

Two members of Congress introduced a bipartisan bill Thursday that would replace state-level GMO labeling laws with a federal requirement for a Food and Drug Administration review of the safety of…

Fed not regulating common farm water practices -- EPA chief By: 04/07/2014 @ 4:57pm

The EPA's new proposed rule for defining "waters of the U.S." does not mean the agency is regulating common farm practices, EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy said at the annual meeting of North American…

Vilsack: Farm Bill Implementation on Track By: 04/07/2014 @ 1:27pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack told members of North American Agricultural Journalists in Washington, DC, Monday that farmers should be able to begin comparing the farm bill's new commodity programs…

Credit For Start-Up Farmers By: 04/04/2014 @ 2:13pm

We all know that many farmers don’t retire. One reason some give is that young people aren’t attracted to the hard work.Don’t tell that to Alison and Jim Deutsch of Osseo, Wisconsin. Neither one grew up…

No Shockers in Report, Says Good By: 03/31/2014 @ 4:46pm

USDA's grain stocks and planting intentions report Monday was tame compared to a year ago, but with corn stocks and potential acres both smaller than prereport guesses from the trade, ag economist Darrel…

Farmers Can Adapt to Changing Climate By: 03/31/2014 @ 1:56pm

One day before an international report showing that agriculture faces serious challenges if the planet's climate continues to warm rapidly, a small group of farmers speaking in Ames, Iowa, said that…

Online Marketing Tool Tracks Returns By: 03/28/2014 @ 6:51pm

We all know that any of last year's grain still in bins, if it wasn't hedged or sold, has been losing value for much of the winter. Troubles in Ukraine sparked a spring rally in futures, but the…

Bearish Signals = Prepare for Shrinking Margins By: 03/24/2014 @ 12:58pm

As we close out a discontented winter of Midwestern cold, California drought, and gloomy USDA forecasts, those of us old enough to remember farming in the bad old 1980s can reflect on times that are still…

Biodiesel Boom to Bust By: 03/24/2014 @ 11:07am

Biodiesel doesn’t get the attention of ethanol or its bashing in the media. At an EPA hearing in Washington, D.C., last December, environmentalists were still using old data to incorrectly claim that ethanol…

Slow Road to Japanese Agriculture Trade By: 03/24/2014 @ 10:22am

With the biofuels boom slowing, trade and exports are regaining importance. When Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack addressed the Commodity Classic last month, he got applause with a promise to use USDA trade…

Crop Revenue: Thriving on Less By: 03/19/2014 @ 4:54pm

As the markets have been telling us for months, returns to corn and soybeans will be sharply lower for 2013 and 2014 crops. University of Illinois ag economist Gary Schnitkey gave his latest projections of…

Ag Groups Want Japan Trade Concessions By: 03/13/2014 @ 4:50pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and representatives of several leading farm groups said Thursday that the U.S. should not agree to a Japanese proposal to leave agricultural products out of the current…

Crop Insurance: Good News, Bad News By: 03/12/2014 @ 4:14pm

Crop insurance: Good news, bad news.It's that time of year again – the March 15 deadline is looming for buying crop insurance for spring planted crops in most areas of the Midwest. The good news this…

The industry needs more hamburger cattle By: 03/11/2014 @ 4:23pm

A comeback trail for beefDon Close knew he was risking trouble when he went to Nashville last month. The livestock economist for Rabobank went to the National Cattle Convention on a mission: Change the beef…

The Farm Bill's Commodity Program By: 03/11/2014 @ 4:10pm

A new safety netRemember this price: $3.70 a bushel. Its importance to you depends on how bearish or bullish you are about the price of corn – not just this year, but through 2018. If you think the…

EPA misses chances to encourage E15 and E30 By: 03/04/2014 @ 7:05pm

This week the EPA released its final rule for cleaner, lower-sulfur gasoline that could have made it easier for automakers to use high-octane ethanol blends that may be needed in tomorrow's more efficient…

Ukraine's woes regain U.S. corn exports, for now By: 03/04/2014 @ 1:34pm

At one time, U.S. corn exports to Egypt and the rest of North Africa had a 90% share of that market. But as Ukraine's agriculture has modernized on its rich soils, American farmers lost all but a tenth of…

On to other challenges By: 03/01/2014 @ 5:47pm

Farmers meeting at the Commodity Classic in San Antonio, Texas, still have plenty to do after passage of a farm bill that the groups like. When the National Corn Growers Association and American Soybean…

No quick fixes for waterways By: 02/28/2014 @ 6:27pm

Extreme weather and government neglect are combining once again to challenge barge shipping on U.S. waterways, according to the head of a major commodities shipper who joined in a panel discussion on…

Vilsack fills calendar By: 02/28/2014 @ 1:24pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack joked with reporters Friday that, now that a farm bill has been passed, he feels "like the dog that caught the bus."A complex new law that affects agriculture and resources in…

Deputy Ag Secretary says USDA not staffing up By: 02/27/2014 @ 5:37pm

USDA's Deputy Secretary of Agriculture, Krysta Harden, whose parents still farm in Camilla, Georgia, got a standing ovation from old friends at the American Soybean Association at the Commodity Classic in…

NCGA not resting By: 02/26/2014 @ 5:42pm

Members of the National Corn Growers Association took just a minute or two to bask in the recent passage of a farm bill Wednesday at the Commodity Classic in San Antonio, Texas. Then they looked forward to big…

Reading the ethanol RINs By: 02/25/2014 @ 4:19pm

University of Illinois ag economist Scott Irwin doesn't read tea leaves, but he does find clues to EPA biofuels policies when he looks at the market for RINs, the renewable identification numbers that act…

Normal or better rainfall? By: 02/21/2014 @ 3:29pm

Long-term outlooks for weather during the growing season aren't forecasts, meteorologists speaking at the USDA Agricultural Outlook Forum reminded listeners Friday. They show the probability of weather…

Is USDA too optimistic on weather? By: 02/21/2014 @ 10:58am

The USDA projections for supply and demand for corn show a buildup in ending stocks to 2.1 billion bushels by the end of the next, 2014-15 marketing year.As Economic Research Service economist Mark Ash…

Drilling into a downturn By: 02/20/2014 @ 4:53pm

USDA economists gave more details of the department's recent forecasts for lower farm income Thursday at the Agricultural Outlook Forum in Arlington, Virginia.A drop in cash receipts is the main reason…

Ag Census partly finished By: 02/20/2014 @ 12:51pm

USDA released preliminary data from its five-year, 2012 Census of Agriculture Thursday that showed a 4.3% decline in the number of U.S. farms, to 2.1 million and a leveling off of the loss of farmland.Speaking…

USDA sees only modest drop in acres By: 02/20/2014 @ 9:58am

With a soybean-to-corn futures ratio that favors beans, USDA expects a shift to larger soybean plantings in 2014. But that change will be part of larger crop acreage that won't decline much.That's…

Lower prices but ag still strong By: 02/20/2014 @ 8:50am

Assuming that the nation returns to normal yields for spring-planted crops, USDA expects 2014-15 prices to be sharply lower than prices farmers are getting for sales of last year's harvest, USDA Chief…

USDA sees continued record exports this year By: 02/20/2014 @ 7:46am

U.S. agricultural exports are expected to rise to a record $142.6 billion in the federal fiscal year that began in October, USDA Chief Economist Joe Glauber told the 2014 Agricultural Forum taking place near…

Livestock disaster aid in 60 days By: 02/14/2014 @ 3:39pm

Senator John Thune (R-SD), a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee had praise Thursday for a USDA announcement that it plans to have the livestock disaster programs that were recently reauthorized in the…

Some Farm bill insurance links By: 02/14/2014 @ 3:19pm

The new farm bill has rules that will punish procrastinators who can't pick a program this year, and the law's new links to crop insurance will make that an even harder choice.Remember the ACRE…

USDA projection has corn under new target By: 02/13/2014 @ 2:07pm

USDA's ten-year price projection for corn released Thursday shows that prices would be below the so-called reference price that would trigger payments to farmers under the farm bill's new Price Loss…

USDA projects $3.30 corn By: 02/13/2014 @ 11:04am

USDA's long term projections through 2023, released Thursday, show national average U.S. corn prices falling to $3.30 a bushel in the 2015-16 marketing year, before beginning a slow rebound that finishes…

Ohio heading toward fertilizing permits By: 02/10/2014 @ 7:37pm

Ohio commodity groups are supporting changes to legislation that will require one farmer per farm operation to be certified to apply chemical fertilizer--but not manure.The bill (SB 150) has passed the Ohio…

President signs farm bill By: 02/07/2014 @ 4:55pm

President Barack Obama traveled to East Lansing, Michigan Friday to sign the Agriculture Act of 2014, the Farm Bill, at Michigan State University's equine performance center. He was accompanied by Senate…

Senate passes farm bill By: 02/04/2014 @ 2:47pm

The Senate passed the Agricultural Act of 2014 by a vote of 68 to 32 Tuesday, ending a long, sometimes bitter and partisan, slog toward replacement of a 2008 farm law that expired 491 days earlier.The bill…

Senate clears way for farm bill vote By: 02/03/2014 @ 6:57pm

By a vote of 72 to 22, the Senate today advanced the farm bill to a final vote on Tuesday afternoon. Monday's vote to invoke cloture required 60 votes and prevents a filibuster. It leaves 20 minutes for…

OSHA wants large farms to report online By: 02/03/2014 @ 12:51pm

The Labor Department’s Occupational Safety and Health Administration has released a proposed regulation that would require employers to submit their records of accidents and injuries electronically, with the…

Insuring a loss: Revenue guarantees may not cover all By: 02/03/2014 @ 12:46pm

February is the month when many of us will obsess over new-crop soybean and corn futures. The February average of those futures sets the minimum insurable value for crop insurance. We’ve known for months…

Senate to vote on Farm Bill Tuesday By: 01/30/2014 @ 3:46pm

Debate on the 2014 Farm Bill will start at 2:15 p.m. EST next Tuesday, February 4, according to Senate Agriculture Committee member Tom Harkin (D-IA) and others in the Senate.The bill's passage…

House passes final farm bill By: 01/29/2014 @ 10:19am

In the end, the tally wasn't even close, with a bipartisan majority of 251 voting for the Agricultural Act of 2014, and 166 voting against the bill. The Senate is expected to pass the bill late this week…

Grassley will fight on By: 01/28/2014 @ 8:09pm

When the leaders of the House and Senate agriculture committees took questions from reporters Tuesday, they defended what critics said was a revision that guts payment limit reforms.Senate Agriculture…

Broad farm bill support By: 01/28/2014 @ 7:25pm

The 2014 Farm Bill is approaching the finish line with widespread cheers -- and some notable jeers from a coalition of meat packers and livestock commodity groups.Two of the nation's largest farm…

A quick look at new commodity programs By: 01/28/2014 @ 4:56pm

ANALYSISLike the leaders of most other farm groups -- including American Farm Bureau Federation and the National Corn Growers Association -- Ray Gaesser, an Iowa farmer who is president of the American Soybean…

Farm bill vote in House possible Wednesday morning By: 01/28/2014 @ 10:55am

The leaders of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees expressed optimism Tuesday that the House and Senate will soon pass a farm bill and that it will be signed by the President.House Agriculture…

Farm bill released for final votes in Congress By: 01/27/2014 @ 5:34pm

A final draft of a 2014 farm bill worked out in closed-door negotiations between House and Senate ag committee leaders was released late Monday, with support from leading farm groups but not all livestock…

Farm bill pay limit delay ends By: 01/27/2014 @ 12:47pm

One of the issues holding up the farm bill, a disagreement over payment limit reform, may have been resolved. Reports are circulating in Washington, D.C., over the weekend and today, that a final draft of the…

Corn ethanol competitive, growing overseas By: 01/25/2014 @ 11:41am

Corn ethanol production is taking place in Argentina and, soon, in Brazil, a sign that the industry can compete with sugarcane ethanol in South America, and that it's economically competitive, according…

Farm bill nearly finished By: 01/24/2014 @ 5:51pm

Two attorneys with Washington experience said Friday that negotiations over a final farm bill may have been completed, with a vote in Congress possible as early as next week.Rumors are circulating "that the…

Vilsack sees farm bill finish line By: 01/23/2014 @ 4:56pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack compared the years-long farm bill process to his experiences running a marathon. In the race's 26.2-mile distance, "that last two-tenths of a mile can be the most…

Ethanol vortex hits By: 01/23/2014 @ 4:00pm

On one of the coldest days of the year, ethanol was generating heat Thursday, both in the Midwest and in Washington, D.C., where opponents to an EPA proposal to trim the biofuels mandate has whipped up a storm…

RFS hearing set for Iowa this Thursday By: 01/21/2014 @ 4:17pm

This Thursday, Midwesterners who tried to get EPA to hold a field hearing on its proposal to reduce the Renewable Fuel Standard for 2014 will hold one anyway without the agency's official sanction.EPA…

Franken urges more letters to EPA, White House By: 01/19/2014 @ 6:14pm

When Senator Al Franken (D-MN) walked into the Four Daughters Vineyard & Winery near Spring Valley, Minnesota, Saturday afternoon, he was the only one wearing a suit. He told some 30 farmers waiting for…

NRCS user fees not killed By: 01/17/2014 @ 3:00pm

Now that Congress seems to be working again, farmers who care about conservation may soon be asked to pay a fee the next time they visit a Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) office.Conservation…

Johnson adds support to payment limit debate By: 01/15/2014 @ 5:07pm

Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) on Wednesday weighed in on the payment-limit issue that is among the sticking points holding up a final draft of a farm bill.When asked his views on reports that farm bill…

Grassley sees public opinion favoring payment limits By: 01/14/2014 @ 3:20pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) agrees with Representative Collin Peterson (D-MN) that language Grassley authored to put strong payment limits in the Senate Farm Bill is holding up completion of a final bill…

Stallman urges Congressional action By: 01/12/2014 @ 12:27pm

American Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman expressed hope Sunday that Congress will soon finish a farm bill and legislation to authorize lock and dam repairs, and he called on those legislative leaders to…

Farm bill likely to pay on base acres By: 01/09/2014 @ 10:07am

Speaking to reporters Thursday, Senate Agriculture Committee member and past chairman Tom Harkin (D-IA) said that working out the details of commodity programs remains one of the sticking points to holding a…

Farm bill debate rolls on By: 01/07/2014 @ 11:00pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), told reporters today that when the conference committee drafting a final farm bill meets, it may vote on whether or not it will keep strong payment limits that are already in…

Ethanol groups: Speak up now for RFS! By: 12/23/2013 @ 11:28am

If you think it's a mistake for EPA to scale back its ethanol blending mandate, the Renewable Fuel Standard, you have until January 28 to let the agency know. EPA's proposed 2014 RFS of about 13…

New fees for conservation plans? By: 12/23/2013 @ 10:11am

The two-year budget deal passed by Congress this month makes cuts to conservation spending, on top of cuts planned for the farm bill, and, for the first time since federal conservation programs began in 1933…

Untangling red tape By: 12/17/2013 @ 12:47pm

In New York State, dairy farms are preparing for unannounced inspections by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) in 2014. In Washington, D.C., Farm Bureau lobbyist Don Parrish watches to…

EPA gets an earful on RFS By: 12/05/2013 @ 6:32pm

An EPA hearing in Arlington, Virginia, Thursday on its proposal to roll back its mandate for blending ethanol and biodiesel into the nation's fuel supply next year drew bewildered opposition from corn…

Good cop, bad cop on nutrient management By: 12/03/2013 @ 7:13pm

At its annual meeting in Des Moines this week, the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation is promoting the state's voluntary nutrient management plan, showcasing some of its most conservation-minded members --…

White House deploys economists for farm bill By: 11/21/2013 @ 4:41pm

The White House Rural Council and Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack released a report today that could be used to help the House-Senate farm bill conference committee sell their finished product before the…

Farm bill deadline looms By: 11/20/2013 @ 7:24pm

Farm bill negotiations are underway among the leaders of the House-Senate farm bill conference committee, but the group's self-imposed deadline of Thanksgiving to wrap up tough issues, including Title I…

Grassley: Pay limits threatened By: 11/19/2013 @ 2:01pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who has championed tough commodity payment limits for years, said Tuesday that the leaders of the House Agriculture Committee in the farm bill conference committee are trying to…

Oil companies win RFS round one By: 11/15/2013 @ 3:04pm

The EPA announced its proposal for the 2014 Renewable Fuel Standard Friday and, as expected, it would leave less room for corn-based ethanol in gas tanks next year.The proposed rule, which will be followed by…

Interest rates: looking up? By: 11/15/2013 @ 11:49am

The Federal Reserve's unprecedented intervention in the economy and how it unwinds will ultimately affect interest rates farmers pay for long-term and short-term loans. But forecasting how fast and how…

Robust corn basis faces tougher times By: 11/14/2013 @ 12:54pm

Strong demand from ethanol plants and slow farmer selling has helped drive the local basis for corn to unusually strained levels, but that situation is likely to change dramatically next winter and…

Harkin: Farm bill negotiating starting By: 11/07/2013 @ 6:36pm

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), one of the members of the House-Senate conference committee trying to write a final farm bill, said Thursday that the chairs and ranking members of both chambers' agriculture…

OSHA: large farms should put accident reports online By: 11/07/2013 @ 5:29pm

The Labor Department's Occupational Safety and Health Administration released a proposed regulation Thursday that would require employers to submit their records of accidents and injuries electronically…

Oil could gain billions from freezing RFS By: 11/06/2013 @ 5:59pm

Representatives of two companies that are among the first to commercialize cellulosic ethanol production said Wednesday that an oil-industry goal of freezing renewable fuel mandates at or below current levels…

Falling corn prices = cheaper fertilizer By: 11/06/2013 @ 12:27pm

If there is a silver lining in today’s storm clouds of lower crop prices and shrinking margins, it’s fertilizer. Prices are falling and could continue to fall – especially for nitrogen – as the global…

Financial management key to lower price survival By: 11/06/2013 @ 11:40am

We all know that crop prices are much lower than a year ago and that farmland prices are leveling off. Kevin Kane, a financial analyst for Rabobank based in St. Louis, also tracks yields on 10-year treasury…

Ethanol usage rebounding in 2014 By: 11/06/2013 @ 11:31am

Few ag economists understand the complex details of the Renewable Fuel Standard as well as Scott Irwin at the University of Illinois. This fall, the EPA was expected to propose the size of the RFS for 2014…

Grain transportation bottlenecks and prices By: 11/06/2013 @ 11:27am

Poor transportation costs you. Grain shipping charges are normally built into the cash basis buyers pay for your soybeans, corn, and other grains. Though, for at least a year, little about U.S. commodity…

Survey: Marketing & farm size By: 11/06/2013 @ 11:17am

Gerry Bade, who grows corn, soybeans and alfalfa, and raises beef cattle in Minnesota, is typical of 1,100 producers who took the Successful Farming® Benchmark Marketing Survey this year. For Bade, cash…

Pay limits a thorn in farm bill negotiations By: 11/05/2013 @ 6:57pm

Last week the members of a House-Senate conference committee tasked with putting together a final farm bill talked a lot about bipartisan compromise at their first public meeting on October 30.Aside from the…

Time to skip a turn with buying land? By: 11/05/2013 @ 7:25am

In the farmland market, are you planning your next move?If farming were a game that comes in a box, some Iowa fields would be the equivalent of Monopoly’s Boardwalk. Just this fall, land near Cedar Rapids…

Shifting farmer views on climate change By: 10/25/2013 @ 3:58pm

A report to be released in about two weeks suggests that farmers are definitely not climate change deniers, although your views about the causes still reflect a lot of uncertainty and differing opinions.Iowa…

Barging ahead with a water bill (the WRRDA) By: 10/24/2013 @ 5:28pm

An amazing thing happened in Washington Wednesday evening. The House of Representatives passed a bill. It wasn't just bipartisan. It was nearly unanimous.By a vote of 417 to 3, the House approved the…

Seed companies hoping to end Mexico's GMO suspension By: 10/18/2013 @ 3:20pm

In a brief interview with Agriculture.com, 2013 World Food Prize Laureate Robert Fraley, Monsanto's Chief Technology Officer, said the he expects his company to try to end a recent suspension of field…

Climate and hunger, a painful link By: 10/17/2013 @ 9:58pm

In the developed world, the effects of climate change often seem theoretical, with the worst effects set in the future: Will New York City need a sea wall? Will insect pests in Missouri move into Iowa? In…

Farm tech in a warming world By: 10/17/2013 @ 12:32pm

Farmers from Africa, Argentina, India and Europe said Wednesday that they will need all of the technology science can offer to feed a growing population as the world's changing climate intensifies bad…

No export effect likely from Mexican GMO ban By: 10/15/2013 @ 11:00pm

Staffers at the U.S. Grains Council in Washington, D.C. were getting calls Wednesday from commodities traders after a report was posted on the activist social media website, Care2, that "Mexico Bans GMO corn…

Winning the debate and losing the audience By: 10/14/2013 @ 8:32pm

This week may be remembered as the Great GMO Debate at the World Food Prize in Des Moines, Iowa. Three pioneers in genetic engineering of plants share the prize as the 2013 laureates -- Marc Van Montagu of…

For most farmers, crop insurance stays the same By: 10/03/2013 @ 1:10pm

Crop insurance companies are affected by the federal government shutdown, but because farmers have contracts with those private companies, most aren't likely to be affected.In a telephone press…

Crop insurance, payments in limbo? By: 09/30/2013 @ 11:00pm

As promised, the USDA's website is offline, one effect on agriculture from the shutdown of the federal government today. Most farmers can do just fine without that, but a few may feel other…

Former USDA Undersecretary honored for local food work By: 09/30/2013 @ 12:38pm

In the Netflix television drama House of Cards, Congressman Frank Underwood manipulates people for his own personal and political gain. In the real world of Washington, D.C., one-time Undersecretary of…

Iowa corn farmers invest in genome research By: 09/23/2013 @ 5:35pm

One of the first researchers in the world to sequence the corn genome in 2009, Patrick Schnable, is now Iowa State University's Iowa Corn Promotion Board Endowed Chair in Genetics.The University and the…

House narrowly passes nutrition cuts By: 09/18/2013 @ 11:00pm

The House of Representatives took the next step toward getting a five year farm bill with passage of nearly $40 billion in cuts to the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program after hours of bitter, partisan…

Railroads say they're ready for harvest By: 09/12/2013 @ 10:42pm

For many reasons –- including increased on-farm grain storage, an economy still growing slowly, and railroad capital investments of more than $12 billion annually -- finding covered hopper cars and unit…

Cellulosic plants finally hit higher volume By: 09/04/2013 @ 3:41pm

Near Emmetsburg in northern Iowa, buildings and tanks where corn stover will become ethanol are up. The rest of the new POET-DSM cellulosic ethanol plant will be done in time to start making 20 million gallons…

Q&A: Ray Gaesser, soybean go-to guy By: 09/04/2013 @ 3:20pm

Ray Gaesser, a gregarious corn and soybean farmer from southwest Iowa, becomes president of the American Soybean Association in December. He led his state soybean association in 2007-08 and has worked with…

E15 taking baby steps forward By: 09/04/2013 @ 3:08pm

This month marks one year since Linn Co-op Oil Company first sold E15 at its Marion, Iowa, station, becoming the first in that state to offer it. The new 15% ethanol blend makes up 5% of the farmer…

More signs of land price leveling By: 08/30/2013 @ 3:06pm

A report to be released next week on land prices will mirror a leveling off shown this week by an Illinois study.Rabobank will release its own report, which, like the Illinois survey, will show that land…

Farm Bureau president urges nutrient management By: 08/28/2013 @ 6:29pm

This month the state of Iowa is starting a voluntary nutrient management program that drew praise from EPA administrator Gina McCarthy when she visited the Iowa State Fair.It's not the mandate that some…

Ethanol mandate safe, for now By: 08/27/2013 @ 5:31pm

The top lobbyist for a South Dakota-based ethanol trade group said Tuesday that repeal of the Renewable Fuel Standard in unlikely in Congress this year."The repeal of the Renewable Fuel Standard is already off…

A sustainable legacy By: 08/23/2013 @ 11:33am

A great farmer leader died on August 17, 2013 at the age of 81. Farmers outside of Iowa may not have heard his name. Yet future generations may be quite familiar with the legacy of Dick Thompson.Thompson was…

More voices needed By: 08/19/2013 @ 9:00am

Now that the farm bill debate is almost over -- either bogged down again in Congress or resurrected -- consider joining a commodity group if you haven’t yet. Why? Because the other issues those groups tackle…

EPA chief praises nutrient plan By: 08/15/2013 @ 4:43pm

Thursday, the new administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, Gina McCarthy, made the Iowa State Fair her first trip destination after starting her job three weeks ago.Like many visitors, she had…

Gulf fishermen visit South Dakota By: 08/09/2013 @ 6:23pm

Friday, a group of Louisiana fishermen were on their way to visit an ethanol plant in South Dakota, as part of a four-day exchange trip aimed at increasing understanding between independent business owners who…

Better corn weather? By: 07/23/2013 @ 5:10pm

Sometimes the past can be prediction. For much of this summer, Iowa State University climatologist Elwynn Taylor saw erie similarities between the wet spring and dry summer of 1947 and this year's weather…

Economic Summit: Iowa a net corn importer By: 07/22/2013 @ 11:00pm

AMES, Iowa (Agriculture.com)--Pork and poultry production are likely to continue expanding in 2014, with pork exports picking up. As corn production rebounds from last year and ethanol production recovers…

Farm bill in motion By: 07/16/2013 @ 7:10pm

The farm bill is in motion again in Washington. This week it has become both a political football, and also a physical bill passing from one chamber of Congress to another in what could be the start of writing…

Smithfield review is secretive By: 07/16/2013 @ 11:08am

The Obama Administration is keeping its review of the sale of Smithfield Foods to a Chinese hog company virtually secret, which may be a normal practice for the reviewer, the Committee on Foreign Investment in…

Senate waits for House farm bill By: 07/15/2013 @ 4:42pm

The Senate Agriculture Committee's Chairwoman, Debbie Stabenow (D-MN) warned the leadership of the House of Representatives Monday that time is running out to get a farm bill passed before the old law…

House passes part of farm bill By: 07/11/2013 @ 3:33pm

By a partisan vote of 216 to 208, the House Thursday passed a stripped down farm bill that leaves out its most expensive part, the Nutrition Title."Pass the farm bill farm bill, so that I can begin to work on…

Goodbye U.S. bacon? Smithfield buyout debate continues By: 07/10/2013 @ 8:13pm

The Senate Agriculture Committee pondered the effect of a Chinese company's $4.7 billion purchase of Smithfield Foods Wednesday with some members admitting they have little power to stop it.Will it be the…

Hot Senate Smithfield hearing? By: 07/09/2013 @ 3:24pm

A Senate hearing that matches summer's heat could be on tap tomorrow.That's when the Senate Agriculture Committee takes a close look at the planned $4.7 billion sale of Smithfield Foods to…

Grassley: split bill unlikely By: 07/03/2013 @ 11:36am

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) likes the concept of splitting nutrition spending from the rest of the farm bill. He voted for that approach in the Senate last year.But Wednesday he said that route to getting a…

Farm groups oppose split bill By: 07/02/2013 @ 3:41pm

One of the largest coalitions of agriculture-related industries sent a letter to the leader of the House of Representatives Tuesday opposing a move by some members to split the nutrition title from the rest of…

Could have been worse By: 06/28/2013 @ 3:51pm

Like many analysts, Iowa State University economist Chad Hart was surprised by USDA's big acreage report Friday that increased corn, wheat, and soybean acres.But after the markets closed, he believes more…

Corn Belt 'exodus' seen in report By: 06/28/2013 @ 2:14pm

Looking at today's planted acreage report, North Dakota State University economist Frayne Olson finds a shift out of the normally good growing areas of the Corn Belt."As you dig into the numbers a little…

Why such a bearish report? By: 06/28/2013 @ 1:42pm

The trade underestimated the acreage starting point before some soggy fields were abandoned, and farmers did all they could to avoid low prevented-planting crop insurance payments to get the crop…

High abandonment ahead for crop acres? By: 06/28/2013 @ 12:08pm

It's important to remember that today's planted acres report is partly planting intentions, says veteran University of Illinois economist and market analyst Darrel Good."I think we have to remember…

USDA sees more corn By: 06/28/2013 @ 11:10am

USDA has an astounding estimate for planted corn acres today: 97.4 million acres, up slightly from last year. This is above the top end of analysts' expectations of 96.4 million acres and well above…

Senate passes immigration bill By: 06/27/2013 @ 4:01pm

By a vote of 68 to 32, the Senate approved an immigration reform bill Thursday.Two of the nation's largest farm groups welcomed the legislation, which faces an uncertain future in the House."The…

Biofuels part of climate plan By: 06/26/2013 @ 3:10pm

Top administration officials, including Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, shared more details Wednesday on how President Barack Obama's plan to fight carbon pollution may be put into effect.Just last…

Grassley backs pressure on House By: 06/25/2013 @ 9:24am

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said Tuesday that he supports the Senate not extending the 2008 farm law again in order to keep pressure on the House of Representatives to pass a new farm bill.Senate Majority…

Stunned ag leaders regroup after farm bill failure By: 06/20/2013 @ 5:52pm

In the end, it was a stunning defeat in the House of Representatives Thursday for a farm bill labeled as reform. The House Agriculture Committee, led by a patient Oklahoma populist, Frank Lucas, had rejected…

House flies through farm bill amendments By: 06/19/2013 @ 11:37pm

On the first day of voting on amendments to the House Farm Bill, an effort by 71 Democrats to restore cuts to food stamp spending failed by a vote of 188 to 234. The vote was almost entirely along party lines…

House defeats farm bill By: 06/19/2013 @ 11:00pm

Thursday, the House of Representatives defeated a farm bill that cuts food stamp spending too much for most Democrats. It also, for the first time ever, would have put a strong $250,000 cap on commodity…

White House opposes farm bill By: 06/17/2013 @ 11:00pm

The White House has announced that it opposes the House version of a farm bill, known as Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management (FARRM) Act of 2013."The Administration strongly opposes H.R. 1947, the…

Committee members sell a farm bill By: 06/17/2013 @ 11:00pm

Members of the House Agriculture Committee, led by Chairman Frank Lucas (R-OK) and the ranking member, Collin Peterson (D-MN) took to the House floor Tuesday to urge a vote for a farm bill.Reflecting deep…

Oil industry fighting new ethanol sources By: 06/11/2013 @ 1:42pm

Lobbyists told ethanol producers at the Fuel Ethanol Workshop in St. Louis Tuesday that their industry is at war with the petroleum industry, which doesn't want to give up market share, especially as…

Senate passes farm bill, again By: 06/10/2013 @ 6:00pm

In just under one year, the U.S. Senate passed a farm bill for a second time Monday, by a vote of 66 to 27.The 2013 version incorporates nearly all of the amendments offered to the 2012 bill, which passed by a…

Anti-GMO movement builds By: 06/06/2013 @ 11:00pm

This week the Connecticut legislature became the first in the Union to pass a law requiring food with genetically modified (GMO) ingredients to be labeled. Four other states must pass a compatible law before…

Key farm bill vote Thursday By: 06/03/2013 @ 11:00pm

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid announced late Tuesday that the Senate will hold a cloture vote on the farm bill Thursday morning, a key vote that would prevent any delays from filibustering. Senators will…

Senate farm bill plods along By: 06/02/2013 @ 11:00pm

The Senate is still treading water with its 2013 farm bill, passing only two amendments Monday while its agriculture committee leadership negotiated behind the scenes to limit the number of amendments to be…

Senate trims insurance subsidies for some By: 05/23/2013 @ 7:08pm

Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) doesn't think the federal government should saddle our children with debt to pay 62% of high-income farmers' crop insurance premiums. And Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL)…

Senate keeps USDA sugar program By: 05/22/2013 @ 6:28pm

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) threaded a new farm bill through another day of amendments on the floor of the Senate Wednesday, succeeding in preventing its food stamp program…

Senate rejects farm bill food stamp changes By: 05/21/2013 @ 5:58pm

The Senate defeated two amendments to change food stamp spending in a farm bill being debated on the floor Tuesday. One, introduced by Senator Pat Roberts (R-KS) would have saved an estimated $31 billion over…

Ag committee's new alliances By: 05/16/2013 @ 11:09am

Just before the House Agriculture Committee finished debating its farm bill late Wednesday night, a freshman Democrat on the committee, Michelle Lujan Grisham, spoke about an amendment she was withdrawing that…

Better margin for House farm bill By: 05/16/2013 @ 7:10am

Just before midnight Wednesday, the House Agriculture Committee voted 36 to 10 to advance its own version of a farm bill for a vote that's expected in June on the floor of the House.The bill drew slightly…

House progresses on farm bill By: 05/15/2013 @ 4:38pm

As bitterly divided over food stamp spending as a year ago, the House Agriculture Committee worked halfway through its 576-page farm bill by midafternoon Wednesday. It approved commodity programs that put more…

Senate tacks on conservation compliance By: 05/14/2013 @ 7:58pm

When it approved a new farm bill Tuesday, the Senate Agriculture Committee formally adopted a conservation compliance compromise worked out between farm groups and conservation advocates.The compromise drops a…

Senate Committee advances farm bill By: 05/13/2013 @ 11:00pm

By a vote of 15-5, members of the Senate Agriculture Committee approved a farm bill Tuesday that is projected to save almost $24 billion in federal spending over a decade. It continues some of last year's…

Southern crops rise in farm bill By: 05/13/2013 @ 1:58pm

Nostalgic prints of cotton farming scenes hang from the walls of Danny and Jo Anne Murphy's farm home outside of Canton, Mississippi. In one, families crowd a country road to watch a crop duster swoop…

Down South, mud season lingers By: 05/11/2013 @ 11:00pm

Central and eastern Corn Belt farmers aren't alone in struggling with excess rain and cool weather this year. Canton, Mississippi, farmer Danny Murphy has his corn planted, but its development is lagging…

Congress tries to keep rivers open By: 05/07/2013 @ 5:37pm

If you buy fertilizer or sell grain shipped on the Mississippi or Ohio River, you'll be glad to know that on Tuesday the Senate began to consider a new version of the Water Resources Development Act of…

Ag groups back conservation compliance By: 05/06/2013 @ 11:00pm

A coalition of conservation groups and farm and commodity organizations has agreed to back linking conservation compliance to eligibility for crop insurance premium subsidies in the Senate's 2013 farm…

Farm Bill drama ahead By: 05/01/2013 @ 6:14pm

This year, the farm bill debate has been behind the scenes, as members of congressional agriculture committees wrestle with food stamp spending and regional differences over commodity programs. Farm groups…

Franken seeks to improve E-Verify rules By: 04/18/2013 @ 4:22pm

Senator Al Franken (D-MN) told reporters Thursday that he'll try to get farms and small businesses treated differently in a Senate immigration bill that would eventually require all businesses to use the…

A step to ag worker reform By: 04/15/2013 @ 11:00pm

The broad outline of an immigration reform bill was made public Tuesday, including changes designed to streamline a guest worker program for the nation's farms. The bill would make an estimated 1 million…

Mixed views of ag budget By: 04/11/2013 @ 4:49pm

Some farm groups are pushing back on Obama Administration proposals for the USDA budget but members of Congress aren't completely opposed.Thursday, the American Soybean Association expressed opposition…

Obama proposes crop insurance cuts again By: 04/10/2013 @ 3:30pm

When the White House today released its proposed federal budget for fiscal year 2014 (which starts in October) it included cuts for premium subsidies for farmers for crop insurance.The Obama administration…

Food Aid debate grows By: 04/09/2013 @ 11:00pm

In the $3.8 trillion 2014 federal budget proposed by the Obama Administration Wednesday, a shift of more than $1 billion from one emergency food aid account to another might be just a footnote. Instead…

Farm bill in works, still difficult By: 04/08/2013 @ 11:00pm

Leaders of congressional ag committees from both parties seem optimistic that there will be a farm bill this year, but tough negotiating remains, especially if committees have to trim spending even more than…

A turnaround for ethanol? By: 04/05/2013 @ 4:03pm

With the ethanol industry running at about 85% of capacity and corn prices suddenly cheaper after last week's bearish USDA reports, the industry may be poised for a brief rebound, according to estimates…

Thriving in a harsh climate By: 04/02/2013 @ 1:36pm

Ray Gaesser started using no till on his southwest Iowa farm in the early 1980s. That, combined with terraces, assured that "we had virtually no erosion," he said Tuesday. Then around 2010, his farm started…

Farmers already adapting to erratic weather By: 03/20/2013 @ 2:17pm

Weather and climate aren’t the same, but near-term weather cycles and longer-term changes in climate have this in common: Both will bring more extremes of wet and dry years. So far, farmers are adapting to…

Drought 2.0: Staying ahead of an uncertain 2013 By: 03/20/2013 @ 2:09pm

After the 2012 drought, the nation's worst since the 1950s, some farmers are preparing for a tough 2013. Winter wasn’t encouraging. Weekly U.S. Drought Monitor maps showed exceptional drought – the…

Farming's new faces By: 03/20/2013 @ 10:56am

They are different, yet united by a toughness that farming demands. They are among the newest faces on the nation’s landscape, yet many have a long heritage in growing food.Laurie Schmidt of Nemaha, Iowa, is…

Cuts target farm programs, insurance By: 03/11/2013 @ 11:00pm

Once again, farm programs are on the chopping block in Washington.Tuesday, House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) released a budget that would trim $4.6 trillion in federal spending over the next…

Finding real solutions By: 03/06/2013 @ 5:12pm

We're at the start of a century that will test the planet's resources to produce food, fiber and energy, but the solutions from that challenge are likely to come first from landowners and…

Business apps By: 03/04/2013 @ 1:32pm

Smartphones are being used more and more for crop production on farms. They're helpful for mapping, weed identification, and, of course, checking the weather.The apps listed here can also extend your…

Farm bill options shrinking? By: 03/02/2013 @ 5:42pm

Three major commodity groups will leave the Commodity Classic in Florida without making big changes to their top goals for farm policy--getting a farm bill passed this year and defending crop insurance from…

Vilsack outlines sequester hits to ag By: 03/01/2013 @ 12:14pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack shared his frustration with Washington gridlock as well as details of how spending reductions will hit agriculture when he spoke to members of corn, grain sorghum, soybean and…

Fighting for a now-smaller farm bill? By: 02/28/2013 @ 8:23pm

Leaders of the American Soybean Association and National Corn Growers Association said Thursday at their annual meeting in Kissimmee, Florida that a top goal remains passage this year of a five-year farm…

Soybean board promotes healthier oil By: 02/28/2013 @ 5:01pm

The soybean checkoff and two major seed companies are fighting to regain the 28% share of the vegetable oil market that soybeans lost after the federal government required labeling of trans fatty acids in food…

Better weather? By: 02/22/2013 @ 3:50pm

The odds are improving for a wetter spring and summer in the eastern Corn Belt, a seasonal forecaster with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Climate Prediction Center said on Friday at…

Weather hangs over USDA price projections By: 02/22/2013 @ 10:58am

At the end of his talk about the outlook for grain and oilseed prices Friday, USDA economist Pete Riley listed the usual caveats that show that projections aren't really predictions.There's China…

Farm income: Good for now By: 02/21/2013 @ 5:35pm

Net farm income is expected to increase 14.6%, to $128.2 billion in the current, 2013 calendar year, according to Kevin Patrick, an agricultural economist with USDA's Economic Research Service.Speaking at…

Are funds starving the poor? By: 02/21/2013 @ 11:46am

After the dramatic increase in commodity prices in 2007-2008, a respected hedge fund manager, Michael W. Masters testified before Congress that commodity index investment was exaggerating prices trends by as…

Modest acreage, big price changes By: 02/21/2013 @ 9:26am

USDA's latest projections for acreage and prices for major commodities show only slight changes in acreage from last year but big declines in prices as the department's economists factor in more…

Direct payments thrown into deficit battle By: 02/14/2013 @ 7:08pm

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow announced on Thursday that agriculture plays a key role in a plan by Senate Democrats to prevent across-the-board spending cuts scheduled to start March…

Pressure on crop insurance By: 02/14/2013 @ 2:08pm

At $9 billion a year or more, federal subsidies for crop insurance are now the biggest single USDA program for farmers, making them a fat target for budget cutters. In Washington, there's talk of shaving…

Not a good weather start By: 02/05/2013 @ 4:11pm

Mark Svoboda, climatologist for the National Drought Mitigation Center in Lincoln, Nebraska, greeted participants to a regional listening session on the science of climate assessment Monday with a slide. It…

Improve working capital By: 02/05/2013 @ 9:04am

To say that 2012 was challenging for hog producers is an understatement. As president-elect of the Illinois Pork Producers Council, Todd Dail knows that well. “If you're a hog producer and you buy feed…

Communication is key for young farmers By: 02/02/2013 @ 8:16pm

Iowa State University's Beginning Farmers Conference Saturday offered students who want to farm a crash-course in making the transition to the real world, with tips on getting low-interest loans from…

USDA stands behind ethanol By: 01/30/2013 @ 5:26pm

Iowa's ethanol and biodiesel plant industry got a pat on the back Wednesday from the head of a key branch of USDA, Rural Development.Speaking at the Annual Iowa Renewable Fuels Summit in Altoona, Iowa…

A visionary Vilsack is still enthused By: 01/24/2013 @ 5:51pm

Just when it seems that some of President Barack Obama's Cabinet members are leaving, exhausted or frustrated, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack welcomes staying on for a second term, undaunted by the…

Possible cuts to crop insurance By: 01/23/2013 @ 4:32pm

Art Barnaby is counting the ways.No, the Kansas State University economist isn't trying to top Elizabeth Barrett Browning at writing love poems. If anything, he's advocating tough love for the most…

Farm tax deadline is April 15 By: 01/22/2013 @ 10:04am

At the urging of Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) the IRS has moved the tax filing deadline from March 1 to April 15 this year.Grassley was concerned that the IRS might not have the forms needed by farmers in…

Farm Bureau opposes insurance caps By: 01/16/2013 @ 12:48am

Any doubts that crop insurance tops the list of farm policy goals for farmers were dashed by Farm Bureau delegates at the group's annual meeting in Nashville Tuesday. The group made it clear they…

Vilsack seeks farm policy certainty By: 01/14/2013 @ 9:11pm

Former Iowa Governor Tom Vilsack, who will serve as Agriculture Secretary in President Barack Obama's second term in office, got a warm welcome from American Farm Bureau president Bob Stallman Monday as…

Lingering drought effects hit markets By: 01/13/2013 @ 9:24pm

Chad Hart, Iowa State University Extension economist and grain market analyst, looks for another year of volatile prices. But with weaker demand and some drought recovery in the eastern Corn Belt, prices could…

Optimism for immigration reform By: 01/13/2013 @ 1:59pm

Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman said Sunday that he's optimistic that some type of immigration reform might be passed in Congress, if it can happen within the next nine months, before the next election…

Farm Bureau still wants farm bill By: 01/12/2013 @ 11:00pm

Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman said Sunday that he's optimistic that some type of immigration reform might be passed in Congress, if it can happen within the next nine months, before the next election…

Income taxes rise faster than thought By: 01/10/2013 @ 7:41pm

If you think that higher income tax rates don't kick in until you report income of $450,000 filing jointly with your spouse, think again. The new fiscal cliff tax legislation passed on New…

An animal welfare first for U.S. By: 01/10/2013 @ 3:57pm

An unusual coalition of farm groups, animal welfare experts and state officials Thursday announced a new Iowa group that will make it easier  for anyone in the state to report perceived animal care…

Can Civilization Age Gracefully? By: 01/09/2013 @ 9:05am

Long before most of us, Tom Gillaspy knew 2008 would not be a great year. He didn't know that Lehman Brothers would collapse that year, helping to trigger a financial crisis and the biggest downturn…

Great new tax breaks . . . and pitfalls By: 01/07/2013 @ 11:00pm

As agricultural tax experts dig into a much-criticized fiscal-cliff deal, they're finding plenty that will benefit farmers and ranchers.Estate planning has more certainty, now that the Taxpayer Relief Act…

Franken: new farm bill to be similar By: 01/05/2013 @ 4:12pm

Senator Al Franken (D-MN) said Friday that he doesn't expect major changes when the Senate writes a new farm bill this year."I think we're going to pass something very similar to what we passed in…

Insurance payouts still lag 2011 By: 01/03/2013 @ 4:47pm

When 2012 ended, the nation's crop insurance companies, with the backing of USDA, had made just over $10 billion in indemnity payments to cover losses from one of the nation's worst droughts.While…

Grassley sees mixed results By: 01/02/2013 @ 11:29am

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee who has long championed reforms in how commodity payments are made, said Wednesday that he has mixed feelings about the nine-month…

McConnell plunges into milk policy By: 12/31/2012 @ 9:45pm

In a last-minute addition to the fiscal cliff deal moving through the Senate, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is reportedly crafting his own farm bill extension that continues direct payments at…

Avoiding the dairy cliff? By: 12/29/2012 @ 11:00pm

So much for reform.With no new farm bill to include in any last-minute "fiscal cliff" agreement, House and Senate agriculture committee leaders over the weekend agreed to extend the 2008 Farm Bill through next…

Dispatch from the asylum By: 12/21/2012 @ 3:26pm

As a lobbyist for the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition, Ferd Hoefner takes a clear-eyed view of the dysfunctional world of Congress, whether he's talking about the fiscal cliff negotiations or…

Harkin: Insurance cuts unlikely By: 12/20/2012 @ 9:34pm

Recently the Environmental Working Group and a coalition of several conservative small-government organizations called for cutting $20 to $30 billion out of federal subsidies for crop insurance. That…

Ag Census on its way By: 12/17/2012 @ 11:00pm

Starting today, some 3 million forms for the USDA's Census of Agriculture are being shipped from a federal processing center in Louisville, Kentucky. They'll be hitting the mailboxes of farmers and…

Farm bill detour? By: 12/14/2012 @ 2:54pm

Some members of the U.S. Senate are looking for other ways to speed passage of a farm bill in addition to attempts to attach it to any legislation that might address the fiscal cliff, the year-end expiration…

Farm bill at the cliff By: 12/12/2012 @ 11:00pm

With time to reconcile differences between a Senate and House Agriculture Committee farm bill running out, a bipartisan group of 33 senators today urged the Senate leadership to push for including its version…

Higher farm income, higher farm risk By: 12/12/2012 @ 4:54pm

Every year University of Illinois agricultural economist Gary Schnitkey projects returns per acre for corn and soybeans grown in his state, and net income for a typical 1,200-acre farm. In spite of the…

Grain market reprieve ending? By: 12/11/2012 @ 9:16pm

When ag economist Darrel Good kicked off the 2012 Illinois Farm Economics Summit at DeKalb County's Center for Agriculture on Tuesday, he acknowledged that it's very early to project crop prices for…

Crop loss payouts speed up By: 12/10/2012 @ 3:55pm

Now that crop insurers and USDA's Risk Management Agency (RMA) know the final market value of drought-damaged crops, the pace of indemnity payments is starting to pick up, a senior official with the…

Food stamps remain farm bill obstacle By: 12/06/2012 @ 5:18pm

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee said Thursday that committee leaders are working to resolve differences in commodity programs before a final farm bill is considered, it…

Open up, Grandin tells farmers By: 12/05/2012 @ 9:41pm

Temple Grandin, a woman who overcame autism to become one of the world’s most influential authorities on livestock behavior, shared her ideas on how farmers can tell their story to the public at the Iowa…

Selling now? By: 12/05/2012 @ 11:18am

Even before the election, Kansas Farm Bureau was urging members to ask Congress for a “virtual repeal” of the estate tax in the lame-duck session: an exemption of $5 million and a top rate of 35%. That…

Livestock follows the corn By: 12/04/2012 @ 7:54pm

Iowa will likely add 600,000 new pig spaces in 2013, and finding a spot for them is getting tougher, Brian Waddingham, Executive Director of the Coalition to Support Iowa's Farmers told members of the…

Ag leaders talking -- Grassley By: 12/04/2012 @ 8:48am

Behind the scenes, the leaders of the House and Senate agriculture committees may already be working out differences between their two versions of a farm bill, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), a member of the…

Trapping elusive nutrients By: 12/03/2012 @ 11:00pm

At a packed meeting room in Des Moines, Iowa, members of the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation got a detailed look at the science and the politics behind the new Iowa Nutrient Reduction Strategy Tuesday.While some…

Farm bill scenarios unfold By: 11/27/2012 @ 10:56am

On a day when political posturing in Washington sent the stock market plunging, Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) told reporters he remains optimistic that Congress will deal with the so-called fiscal cliff before…

Grassley: farm bill has a chance By: 11/20/2012 @ 10:26am

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, told reporters Tuesday that leaders of the committee remain optimistic about a new farm bill being passed in the current lame-duck…

Crop insurance tax traps By: 11/16/2012 @ 2:46pm

Federal tax laws allow farmers using cash accounting to defer income into another year fairly easily by delaying grain sales.This year, a big chunk of your income may be indemnity payments from crop insurers…

Crop insurance jitters By: 11/16/2012 @ 2:41pm

After drought, crop insurance indemnity payments could be one-sixth of a record $122 billion in 2012 U.S. net farm income. But this success makes it a political target – just one concern farmers have about…

Futures shock By: 11/16/2012 @ 2:26pm

It doesn't matter what marketing experts advise. In the real world's uncharted sea of money, financial icebergs lie beneath the surface. In October 2008, VeraSun Energy, one of the largest ethanol…

Ethanol tops out By: 11/16/2012 @ 1:12pm

Chuck Woodside, CEO of KAAPA Ethanol near Minden, Nebraska, is obsessed with corn this fall. By October, he had heard of irrigated yields as high as 250 to 300 bushels an acre farther east in the Platte River…

Grassley on election and ag By: 11/13/2012 @ 3:33pm

Senator Chuck Grassley, one of few members of Congress to actively farm, sized up the election results for agriculture Tuesday, saying the voters' choice of president had little effect on the farm bill…

Nearly all of ag wants farm bill action By: 11/12/2012 @ 11:00pm

On Tuesday, the day that Congress starts its lame-duck session, 235 groups representing nearly every facet of agriculture sent a letter to leaders of the House of Representatives asking for a vote on the 2012…

An Obama fan By: 11/09/2012 @ 4:59pm

It wasn't quite like New Jersey Governor Chris Christie shaking hands with the President when Barack Obama visited Christie's storm struck state. Another big fan waited until after the election to…

Last gasp for 2012 farm bill By: 11/09/2012 @ 4:03pm

Farm groups are likely to make a push for getting a farm bill passed immediately when Congress returns to work late next Tuesday. But few are betting that a new five-year law will be passed in the lame duck…

Day-after disappointment and hope By: 11/07/2012 @ 6:24pm

Last June, when Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney made a campaign stop in Council Bluffs, Iowa, Ray Gaesser was among a small group of farmers who got to have breakfast with the former…

Documentary brings Dust Bowl to life By: 11/06/2012 @ 10:10am

In Oklahoma, conservation is personal.About 400 showed up at the student union at Oklahoma State University in Stillwater for an advance screening of The Dust Bowl by documentary film maker, Ken Burns. There…

Election could affect farm bill timing By: 11/06/2012 @ 8:10am

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (R-OK) still wants to pass a farm bill in the lame duck session of Congress after the election, but it could be pushed into 2013, he said shortly before voting…

Using cellulose By: 11/01/2012 @ 10:47am

For two years, Jeff Taylor, a Gilbert, Iowa, corn and soybean farmer, has sold corn stover to DuPont Industrial Biosciences. DuPont pays him $15 a ton for the 2 tons per acre taken off his fields by a custom…

Ethanol tops out By: 10/26/2012 @ 11:24am

Chuck Woodside, CEO of KAAPA Ethanol near Minden, Nebraska, is obsessed with corn this fall. By October, he had heard of irrigated yields as high as 250 to 300 bushels an acre farther east in the Platte River…

Oxfam: slim down; feed more By: 10/17/2012 @ 4:51pm

Oxfam America, part of a global network of food aid and development groups that started in Britain, served a meatless, locally grown meal in Des Moines, Iowa Wednesday to encourage overfed Americans to help…

Avoid start-up pitfalls By: 10/01/2012 @ 2:39pm

A panel of relatively young but grizzled veterans of agriculture shared tips on everything from managing debt to avoiding divisions within agriculture at the New Century Farmer Conference in Johnston, Iowa…

Dashboards By: 10/01/2012 @ 11:26am

Imagine driving a grain truck down a steep grade into the Ohio River Valley without a speedometer. If the brakes and transmission work, you can do it, of course. But that missing gauge could mean a speeding…

Rotating saves By: 10/01/2012 @ 10:33am

Since 2003, Iowa State University agronomist Matt Liebman and other researchers have been comparing two-year corn-soybean rotations with two longer-term rotations on plots west of Ames, Iowa. Economic analysis…

Stabenow to push farm bill after election By: 09/20/2012 @ 6:08pm

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) said Thursday that she will push for completing the 2012 farm bill in the lame duck session of Congress that takes place after the November…

Indemnity checks to spill into 2013 By: 09/20/2012 @ 4:02pm

As some 5,000 crop insurance adjusters work through the claims from one of the nation's worst droughts, delays in the process don't surprise Rhonda Smith, Vice President, Insurance, for Farm Credit…

Farm Bill inaction risky, Vilsack says By: 09/14/2012 @ 3:59pm

The House could pass a farm bill in 24 hours if its leadership wanted to, Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack told members of the National Association of State Departments of Agriculture in Des Moines, Iowa…

Farm bill has one more chance By: 09/13/2012 @ 6:58pm

A bipartisan group in the House of Representives took one last stand Thursday to force a vote on a farm bill before Congress leaves town to campaign for re-election. Shortly after the House Agriculture…

Land a Threat To Credit? By: 09/13/2012 @ 4:36pm

Recently Fitch Ratings warned that the rising land costs pose a threat to ag lenders “should prices reverse quickly.”“In the event that the long-term trends of low interest rates and rising commodity…

Polite bashing By: 09/12/2012 @ 11:08pm

Two stand-ins for President Barack Obama and his Republican challenger, Mitt Romney, managed to bash each other's candidate without raising their voices Wednesday at a debate agriculture in Des Moines…

Farm bill is still doable, Stabenow says By: 09/11/2012 @ 3:43pm

One day before hundreds of farmers and farm group leaders rally for a new farm bill in Washington, Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) said it's not too late to pass a farm bill…

USDA forms watershed research network By: 09/10/2012 @ 9:24pm

Scientists at USDA's Agricultural Research Service are doing ground-saving research on watersheds across the United States, but they aren't always able to work with all of the information their…

Groups urge farm bill vote By: 08/28/2012 @ 8:18pm

In a hot and muggy media tent at the Farm Progress Show outside of Boone, Iowa, leaders of a diverse coalition of farm groups made another pitch Tuesday for Congress passing a farm bill before the current law…

Stabenow gets 'er done By: 08/13/2012 @ 3:43pm

If Congress had more leaders like Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Washington might not be gridlocked. As chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, Stabenow treated the ranking Republican, Pat Roberts of…

Lucas threads a thin needle By: 08/13/2012 @ 3:40pm

If anyone is qualified to be chairman of the House Agriculture Committee, it’s Frank Lucas. His rural western Oklahoma district comprises almost half the state and is one of the nation’s largest. He’s an…

Ethanol industry faces critics, drought By: 08/09/2012 @ 3:19pm

The American Coalition for Ethanol marked its 25th anniversary at its annual meeting in Omaha Thursday. Celebrate wasn't quite the right word, the group's executive vice president, Brian Jennings…

Costly crop insurance? By: 08/01/2012 @ 2:50pm

Crop insurance has solid support from the leaders of the House and Senate Agriculture Committees. They opposed Obama administration budget cuts for 2013 that would shave crop insurance premium subsidies for…

Mixed views of disaster bill By: 07/31/2012 @ 11:00pm

Thursday, the House is expected to vote on a bill that would find funds for livestock disaster programs that expired last year. The effort is all that remains of a one-year farm bill extension that was…

Farm bill extension withdrawn By: 07/31/2012 @ 5:54pm

The House leadership, unable to muster support to pass a 2008 farm bill extension, has withdrawn the bill and will consider a separate measure to offer livestock farmers drought assistance, say farm group…

Wheat Growers oppose extension By: 07/30/2012 @ 11:00pm

The National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) Tuesday joined other major farm groups in opposing a one-year extension of the 2008 farm bill which has been offered by the leadership of the House of…

Ag groups oppose farm bill extension By: 07/30/2012 @ 6:42pm

Some of the nation's biggest and most influential farm and conservation groups came out against a one-year extension of the current farm bill Monday, with some saying that it offers virtually none of the…

EPA asked to reduce ethanol mandate By: 07/29/2012 @ 11:00pm

A coalition of meat, poultry and dairy groups Monday asked the Environmental Protection Agency to waive all or part of the renewable fuels standard, which mandates the use of ethanol in the nation's fuel…

Farm bill now an extension By: 07/26/2012 @ 11:00pm

Farm groups continued to call for a vote in the House on a five-year farm bill Friday, as its leadership appeared ready to vote only on a one-year extension the the existing farm bill. But a one-year extension…

EWG: What? Me worry? By: 07/19/2012 @ 5:52pm

With charts supplied by Iowa State University economist Bruce Babcock, the Environmental Working Group explained to urban reporters Thursday that, thanks to crop insurance, there's no rush to push a farm…

Pelosi calls for House farm bill vote By: 07/19/2012 @ 5:08pm

House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) Thursday joined a growing chorus of national leaders urging the leadership of the House to vote on its version of a farm bill before the August recess.“I join…

Livestock groups hit ethanol mandate By: 07/19/2012 @ 4:11pm

The nation's top livestock groups organized a briefing for congressional staffers in Washington Thursday that supports altering U.S. energy law to shrink the mandate for ethanol use in short crop years…

Avoiding pitfalls, from debt to divisions By: 07/13/2012 @ 4:55pm

A panel of relatively young but grizzled veterans of agriculture shared tips on everything from managing debt to avoiding divisions within agriculture at the New Century Farmer conference in Johnston, Iowa…

Ag Groups ask House to vote on farm bill By: 07/13/2012 @ 12:59pm

A letter calling for a farm bill vote was sent to the leadership of the House of Representatives today by 46 national farm, commodity, financial, conservation, rural, religious, and research organizations.The…

House committee approves farm bill By: 07/11/2012 @ 11:00pm

At 12:55 a.m. Thursday, after more than a day of sometimes contentious debate, the House Agriculture Committee voted 35 to 11 to approve an amended farm bill.Those voting no included three Republicans who…

Tension grows over food stamps By: 07/11/2012 @ 3:34pm

For decades, the farm bill has passed Congress with support from urban and rural politicians with a common interest in food.  As the House Agriculture Committee marked up its version of a five-year farm…

House committee takes up farm bill By: 07/11/2012 @ 2:42pm

The House Agriculture Committee began considering its version of a farm bill Wednesday, with some 100 amendments stacked on the table in the committee's hearing room. Staffers working for Chairman Frank…

Digesting the House farm bill By: 07/06/2012 @ 6:47pm

The staff of farm groups and members of Congress were still digesting the House Agriculture Committee's draft of a Farm Bill Friday, and finding parts of it more palatable than others. To the National…

House farm bill draft emerges By: 07/04/2012 @ 11:00pm

The House Agriculture Committee released a farm bill "discussion draft," Thursday. As expected, the proposed Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act (FARRM), cuts nutrition programs more deeply than…

Senate passes farm bill By: 06/21/2012 @ 1:50pm

Early Thursday afternoon the U.S. Senate passed a farm bill, the Agriculture Reform, Food and Jobs Act of 2012, by a vote of 64-35, four more than the 60 votes required.The relatively narrow margin of victory…

Negotiating over premium cut By: 06/20/2012 @ 12:42pm

In her press conference earlier today, Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) indicated that Senator John Thune (R-SD) and Senators Tom Coburn (R-OK) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) are negotiating…

Stabenow not enthused on crop insurance changes By: 06/20/2012 @ 9:57am

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow said Wednesday that  she doesn't think an amendment to tie conservation rules to crop insurance eligibility will pass when the Senate takes up…

Crop insurance linked to income, conservation By: 06/19/2012 @ 11:00pm

In what could be a historic change of fortune for the nation's crop insurance industry, the Senate voted Wednesday to link eligibility for coverage to meeting conservation rules, and it approved reducing…

Senate plunges into farm bill amendments By: 06/19/2012 @ 7:46pm

It's rare to see a speech on the Senate Floor that lasts  only two minutes, but that's how much time each sponsor of a farm bill amendment had to argue his or her case Tuesday. Opponents had…

South Dakota senator defends payment limits By: 06/18/2012 @ 6:19pm

Senator Tim Johnson (D-SD) called for action on the farm bill Monday, as leaders of the Senate and its agriculture committee continued negotiations to limit amendments to the bill.Johnson said that he hoped a…

Can civilization age gracefully? By: 06/15/2012 @ 3:56pm

Long before most of us, Tom Gillaspy knew 2008 would not be a great year.He didn't know that Lehman Brothers would collapse that year, helping to trigger a financial crisis and the biggest downturn in the…

Senate winnows amendments By: 06/14/2012 @ 5:11pm

Most of the farm bill action in the Senate this week was behind the scenes, as the leadership negotiated a smaller number of amendments to consider than some 250 offered so far.Late Thursday, Senate…

Farm bill debate starts By: 06/12/2012 @ 11:00pm

Leaders of the Senate Agriculture Committee are working behind the scenes to get amendments to their  farm bill down to a manageable number that are relevant to the committee's jurisdiction.By…

Co-ops: quiet players with big role By: 06/07/2012 @ 11:00pm

The grain silos of small-town co-ops are like beacons for travelers crossing the Corn Belt and High Plains wheat country. They're so common they're easy to take for granted.But Chuck Conner…

Amendments cover ethanol, insurance, beginners By: 06/07/2012 @ 6:47pm

By Thursday, more than 30 amendments had been filed to the 2012 Senate farm bill, ranging from a ban on support for ethanol blender pumps, to two approaches to limiting crop insurance premium subsidies, to…

Farm bill leaps first hurdle. By: 06/06/2012 @ 11:00pm

On Thursday the Senate voted 90 to 8 to move the farm bill forward to debate and a final vote that ag committee members would like to hold soon.It was far more than the 60 required under Senate rules, but the…

More trims to crop insurance? By: 06/06/2012 @ 7:07pm

An amendment to limit crop insurance premium subsidies to America's largest farms is one of some 30 changes that farm groups will be watching for when the Senate begins active debate on its farm bill on…

Hunting, fishing interests weigh in on farm bill By: 06/04/2012 @ 1:10pm

Farmers and nutrition advocates aren't the only groups lobbying for a farm bill. So are groups that represent the $100 billion-a-year hunting and fishing industry."Our top priority right now is to get as…

Stabenow open to farm bill changes By: 06/03/2012 @ 11:00pm

Just before the Senate is expected to debate its 2012 farm bill this week,  Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) said she's willing to consider last-minute changes to…

Farm bill floor debate likely By: 06/03/2012 @ 10:30pm

Like many other agricultural organization leaders, Chuck Conner will be watching closely this week if the U.S. Senate starts floor debate on a farm bill.Conner, who is CEO of the National Council of Farmer…

EWG spotlights $1 million subsidies By: 05/30/2012 @ 11:00pm

In what could be a prelude to a Senate floor debate over crop insurance spending, the Environmental Working Group released a study Thursday that documents large subsidies to farms to lower their cost of buying…

June farm bill vote likely By: 05/25/2012 @ 11:09am

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) past chairman of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said Friday that a June vote on the Senate version of a farm bill is likely, along with some amendments that could affect how the…

Meat export boom continues By: 05/24/2012 @ 10:49am

In spite of an array of challenges around the globe, the outlook for U.S. meat exports remains strong, according to the leaders of the U.S. Meat Export Federation, which is holding its board meeting in New…

President claims progress with biofuels By: 05/23/2012 @ 11:00pm

After visiting a wind energy plant in Newton, Iowa, Thursday, President Barack Obama made a campaign stop at the Iowa State Fairgrounds, where he was greeted by an enthusiastic crowd of supporters at the Paul…

More groups back commodity program choices By: 05/17/2012 @ 11:32am

Members of several farm groups told a House Agriculture subcommittee Thursday that they support giving producers choices of commodity programs in the next farm bill, instead of the approach taken by the Senate…

House leans away from Senate farm bill By: 05/15/2012 @ 11:00pm

Members of the House Agriculture Committee cast doubt Wednesday that they’ll follow every detail of a Senate version of a farm bill, especially for crops that may benefit less than corn and…

Ethanol saved you $1.09/gallon By: 05/15/2012 @ 2:57pm

In 2011, consumers saved an average of $1.09 a gallon for gasoline, thanks to the addition of less expensive ethanol in the mix, according to a study by the Center for Agricultural and Rural Development (CARD)…

Grassley seeks clarity on farm bankruptcy law By: 05/15/2012 @ 10:32am

Chapter 12 bankruptcy, a provision of the law written for farmers who are trying to reorganize debts, was weakened by a Supreme Court ruling Monday that requires an Arizona farm couple to pay full capital…

War vet advocates for young farmers By: 05/11/2012 @ 4:25pm

In writing the next farm bill, Congress needs to support programs for beginning farmers, too, an Iraq war veteran and young farmer from Plainview, Nebraska, told a House Agriculture Committee panel on Thursday…

Will Indiana vote hurt ethanol? By: 05/10/2012 @ 6:06pm

The historic upset of Senator Dick Lugar by Indiana Treasurer Richard Mourdock in Tuesday’s Republican primary in that state may affect ethanol. At least that’s the view of Senator Tom Harkin, who…

Crop insurance showdown looms By: 05/09/2012 @ 11:00pm

Senator Tom Coburn, an Oklahoma doctor who is leading a crusade against the rising federal deficit, is planning to introduce an amendment to the Senate Agriculture Committee’s farm bill that would cap crop…

Record Ukraine corn crop coming By: 05/08/2012 @ 2:25pm

Ukraine is expected to have record corn production and exports following the 2012 crop, according to a USDA report released this week.  The Grain and Feed Annual produced by Foreign Agricultural Service…

Global corn competition gets difficult By: 05/03/2012 @ 3:05pm

In a Washington, D.C., office building, Tom Dorr, president and CEO of the U.S. Grains Council, takes stock of big changes sweeping the global grain trade.“This year, for the first time, the U.S. will export…

Can you afford costlier crop insurance? By: 05/02/2012 @ 11:00pm

In India, cows are sacred. In the Corn Belt and much of the rest of agricultural America, crop insurance seems to be revered. At least that’s the impression you’d get from attending recent farm bill…

Fed backs off child labor on farms By: 04/27/2012 @ 11:08am

Thursday evening the Obama Administration announced that it is withdrawing a proposed rule that would have restricted child labor on farms that drew strong criticism from rural areas.According to a Department…

Senate Ag Committee approves farm bill By: 04/25/2012 @ 11:00pm

Over the objections of southern Senators and one from New York, the Senate Agriculture Committee approved a five-year farm bill Thursday that now heads for a vote on the Senate floor.The bill, called the…

A giant no more? By: 04/24/2012 @ 3:21pm

In a Washington, D.C., office building, Tom Dorr, president and CEO of the U.S. Grains Council, takes stock of big changes sweeping the global grain trade.“This year, for the first time, the U.S. will export…

Grassley seeks funds for energy By: 04/24/2012 @ 12:53pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said Tuesday that he and possibly two other Republicans on the Senate Agriculture Committee will introduce an amendment to provide $800 million in funding over 10 years for an…

Here's Agriculture Risk Coverage By: 04/20/2012 @ 3:23pm

The Senate Agriculture Committee has released a 2012 farm bill draft that would repeal direct payments, countercyclical payments and the average crop revenue election (ACRE) program. The bill, if it becomes…

Senate to end direct payments By: 04/20/2012 @ 1:36pm

Before laying out farm bill details, Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) released a summary on Friday. As expected, the committee's draft of a bill ends direct…

Farm bill still expected...maybe By: 04/20/2012 @ 10:24am

There are doubters among Washington’s farm lobbyists, but most are expecting the Senate Agriculture Committee to release a draft of a farm bill today ahead of a full committee session to approve it next…

Farm bill draft near in Senate By: 04/17/2012 @ 10:16pm

Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow (D-MI) said she hopes to be able to make a draft of her committee’s farm bill public by Friday of this week, with the full committee voting on its…

Vilsack outlines leaner farm bill By: 04/16/2012 @ 4:15pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Monday outlined a leaner 2012 version of what he calls a “Food, farm and jobs bill” that he expects to pass the Senate by early summer and defended his department’s…

Fertilizer runoff threatens Midwest water By: 04/11/2012 @ 11:00pm

Forget the Gulf of Mexico or Chesapeake Bay, waters that conservation and environmental groups say are threatened by agricultural runoff. Thursday the Environmental Working Group released a report that…

Mexico ups U.S. corn imports By: 04/10/2012 @ 1:21pm

The corn market in Mexico is hot, literally. The same drought that devastated Texas last year hit corn production hard in Mexico and Tuesday the USDA reflected that with a boost in its estimate of corn…

Sizzling corn exports to Mexico By: 04/10/2012 @ 12:40pm

The corn market in Mexico is hot, literally.The same drought that devastated Texas last year hit corn production hard in Mexico and Tuesday the USDA reflected that with a boost in its estimate of corn exports…

Coalition backs farm bill energy By: 04/06/2012 @ 5:02pm

Late this week more than 100 groups asked agricultural leaders in Congress to continue energy programs in any new farm bill.   The 2008 Farm Bill included an energy title that the groups say represents…

Asia will lead foods By: 04/05/2012 @ 3:23pm

Today, China is a key market for bulk commodities from the U.S. But in the future, we'll lose out if we don't anticipate demand from affluent Asian consumers for specialized foods that fit their…

North Dakotans release farm bill idea By: 04/04/2012 @ 11:18am

North Dakota's two U.S. senators, Democrat Kent Conrad and Republican John Hoeven, released a proposal for the next farm bill Wednesday that combines features of the current law's ACRE and SURE…

Grassroots message: farm bill this year By: 03/23/2012 @ 6:52pm

Midwest farmers invited to a House Agriculture Committee field hearing Friday in Galesburg, Illinois, had a two-part message for Congress:  Pass a farm bill this year and, as John Mages, a corn and…

Commodity consensus? By: 03/21/2012 @ 11:30am

Major farm groups have been meeting to build consensus before the Senate Agriculture Committee holds its hearing March 21 on a commodity title for the next farm bill.Farm Bureau, National Farmers Union, and 11…

Senate wrestles with commodity programs By: 03/14/2012 @ 11:00pm

At the end of about five hours of testimony on commodity programs for the next farm bill,  Senate Agriculture Committee Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow left the meeting Thursday with one parting comment to…

Farmers Union gears up for farm bill By: 03/07/2012 @ 7:31pm

National Farmers Union delegates wrapped up work on farm bill policy at their annual meeting in an Omaha suburb Wednesday, tackling dairy policy and the beef checkoff, among other things. Taking a break from…

Farmers Union backs a grain reserve By: 03/06/2012 @ 7:47pm

By a large majority, delegates to National Farmers Union’s annual meeting in Omaha voted Tuesday for a 2012 farm bill program that would allow farmers to voluntarily take grain off the market if prices reach…

Insuring against bad weather By: 03/06/2012 @ 10:45am

Doug Theobald's Shelbyville, Indiana, farm fought a wet planting season last year.“The majority of what we planted was at the end of May and early June,” he says. Fortunately, Theobald had insured…

Farm groups stick to policy By: 03/03/2012 @ 8:40pm

Groups representing corn and soybean farmers closed out the Commodity Classic in Nashville, Saturday with no major changes in their wish list for commodity programs in the next farm bill. Both have their own…

Vilsack adds voice for farm bill By: 03/02/2012 @ 12:30pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said Friday that the American people are tired of hearing excuses from Congress about its lack of action on the nation’s problems and called for speedy passage of a farm…

Animal rules raise food prices -- study By: 03/01/2012 @ 11:00pm

Regulations that increase the cost of production for poultry and livestock could add $16.8 billion to the cost of food for U.S. consumers, says a study released Friday by the United Soybean Board at the…

Insurers see different TA strategies By: 03/01/2012 @ 11:00pm

If you haven’t decided yet, you’ve got until March 15 to decide whether or not to opt for trend-adjusted actual production history (APH) ­– even less time if you’re considerate of your insurance…

Groups unite for crop insurance By: 03/01/2012 @ 6:16pm

What do President Barack Obama and House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan have in common?Maybe very little, but together they’re helping to united the four commodity organizations meeting in Nashville…

Groups weigh in on conservation By: 02/27/2012 @ 6:08pm

The Senate Agriculture Committee holds a hearing Tuesday of this week on conservation policy for the next farm bill. Even before that, hundreds of groups are offering support for conservation programs, and one…

Good times roll, maybe through fall By: 02/24/2012 @ 10:48am

On Friday USDA released more detailed analysis of its grain and oilseeds outlook for 2012 that shows an increase in corn exports this year but a lower, $5-a-bushel price for corn after this year’s crop is…

Changes coming in BRIC nations By: 02/23/2012 @ 5:53pm

BRIC is an acronym for four of the world’s fastest developing nations Brazil, Russia, India and China. BRIC could also be a building block for dramatic changes in world agricultural markets, both as new…

Good year ahead but big challenges By: 02/23/2012 @ 12:09pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack opened USDA’s annual Agricultural Outlook Forum with an upbeat view of what to expect in the farm economy this year, and a challenge to Congress to deal with pressing…

Farm economy stays strong - USDA By: 02/23/2012 @ 11:14am

At the USDA Agricultural Outlook Forum Thursday, Chief Economist Joseph Glauber said the department expects another good year in 2012 for agriculture though it’s not likely to match 2011. That was a record…

Sophisticated Asian markets ahead By: 02/22/2012 @ 2:54pm

Today, China is a key market for bulk commodities from the U.S. and South America. But in the future the U.S. could lose out if we don’t anticipate demand from affluent Asian consumers for specialized foods…

Too soon for farm bill extension By: 02/17/2012 @ 1:11pm

Farm groups are getting nervous about the odds of a new farm bill getting done before the current one expires this year.   But the Senate started hearings on the next bill this week and House…

The premium rate shuffle By: 02/16/2012 @ 3:39pm

In late November, USDA's Risk Management Agency revealed good news: Farmers in much of the Corn Belt will see rates used to calculate 2012 crop insurance premiums fall by 10% or more for corn. Rates are…

China seeks better ties here By: 02/16/2012 @ 3:02pm

DES MOINES, Iowa (Agriculture.com)--China’s vice president, Xi Jinping mixed nostalgia with high-level bargaining for closer agricultural ties with the United States at the first U.S. – China Agricultural…

Chinese promise to buy soybeans By: 02/15/2012 @ 4:40pm

A delegation of Chinese leaders agreed to buy 8.62 million metric tons (MMT) of U.S. soybeans worth $4.3 billion at a signing ceremony in Des Moines, Iowa Wednesday. That amount equals almost 316 million…

President’s insurance ideas rejected By: 02/15/2012 @ 11:55am

Members of both the Senate and House agriculture committees showed more resistance to proposed cuts to crop insurance put forth in President Barack Obama’s 2012 budget this week.“I would hope that we…

Insurance cuts would hit farmers By: 02/14/2012 @ 3:57pm

Farmers would take a big hit in cuts to crop insurance premiums proposed in the Obama Administration’s 2013 USDA budget released Monday. That idea isn’t going over well, either in Congress or among farm…

Why USDA's budget is extremely dead By: 02/13/2012 @ 4:26pm

It doesn’t matter which party controls the White House, USDA budgets have ideas that are often ignored by Congress, earning  them a “dead on arrival”  reputation every year.But the USDA budget…

USDA projects $5 new crop corn By: 02/13/2012 @ 11:41am

USDA’s first look at prices for 2012 crops, a projection of current economic conditions and normal weather, not a forecast, has U.S. corn prices at the farm level averaging $5 a bushel for the 2012-13…

Seeking consensus By: 02/13/2012 @ 9:54am

Major farm groups have been meeting to build consensus before the Senate Agriculture Committee holds its hearing March 21 on a commodity title for the next farm bill.Farm Bureau, National Farmers Union and 11…

Farm bill pressure grows By: 02/10/2012 @ 3:22pm

Pressure on Congress to write a farm bill this year instead of extending the old one is building. Today more than 80 organizations representing farmers, environmentalists, hunters, and churches wrote leaders…

Facing cancer By: 02/10/2012 @ 10:36am

I last saw my father alive in a Lincoln, Nebraska, nursing home in 1993. He managed a weak smile before lapsing into morphine-enabled sleep. He died weeks later – five years after diagnosis of prostate…

Prostate cancer: Now what? By: 02/10/2012 @ 10:28am

You’ve gotten a PSA test result that may indicate prostate cancer. Or, more daunting yet, you’ve been diagnosed with it. What’s your next step?If you’ve read my Healthy Manager column, you know that…

Grassley: Farm bill needed soon By: 02/07/2012 @ 2:01pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), a veteran member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said Tuesday that he’s pleased the Chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture Committee has announced a series of hearings on…

CRP signup set for March By: 02/01/2012 @ 11:37am

The USDA will hold a four-week general signup for the Conservation Reserve Program from March 12 to April 6, Acting Under Secretary for Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services (FFAS) Michael Scuse announced…

Too much ag optimism? By: 01/31/2012 @ 3:49pm

Writing a farm bill during good times for agriculture could result in programs that won’t help farmers much if prices crash.That’s the risk that University of Tennessee economist Daryll Ray laid out for…

The incredible shrinking farm bill By: 01/30/2012 @ 3:13pm

The script says in 2012, a presidential election year, a dysfunctional Congress is supposed to write a five-year farm bill in a struggling economy with less money.We saw a preview last fall, when a hurried-up…

Ag weighs in on Obama's energy plans By: 01/25/2012 @ 3:38pm

President Barack Obama devoted more than a tenth of his State of the Union address to Congress Tuesday to energy. And farm and ethanol groups welcomed his comments in a flurry of press releases Wednesday.But…

Farm Bureau gets ready for farm bill By: 01/11/2012 @ 3:50pm

After hours of debate at its annual meeting in Honolulu, Hawaii, this week, it appears that Farm Bureau will continue to press for some form of protection against catastrophic revenue losses as Congress…

Caucus-day GOP ethanol rankings By: 01/03/2012 @ 2:35pm

Of all the Republican candidates seeking a win in the Iowa Caucuses today, Rick Perry seems to be the least supportive of federal support for ethanol and Newt Gingrich the most supportive, Senator Chuck…

A farm land value bubble? By: 12/14/2011 @ 12:13pm

The big question on everyone’s mind after hearing that Iowa land values are breaking records is, is this a bubble?Iowa State University economist Mike Duffy, who conducted the latest Iowa Land Values survey…

Iowa land prices rise at record pace By: 12/14/2011 @ 10:03am

The growth in land values jumped at a record pace of 32.5% in the past year, according to the Iowa Land Value Survey conducted by Iowa State University in November.ISU economist Mike Duffy, who conducts the…

Iowa Senators fight for wind credits By: 12/13/2011 @ 12:39pm

A tax credit that benefits the wind power industry doesn’t expire for another year, but already the specter of congressional gridlock over its extension is slowing investment.   Iowa’s Senators Tom…

Support for keeping framework By: 12/08/2011 @ 1:29pm

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) said Thursday that he hopes congressional ag committees won't abandon their work on a farm bill that was submitted to the deficit-cutting "Super Committee" last month."I thought…

Texan fights to enhance crop insurance By: 12/01/2011 @ 12:45pm

An add-on policy designed to cover shallow losses was part of the farm bill proposal that was being rushed to the failed deficit-cutting Super Committee, Representative Randy Neugebauer (R-TX) told…

Washington to cut subsidies By: 11/17/2011 @ 3:00pm

They mean it this time. Cuts to subsidies for commodity crops are virtually certain, even if the exact new farm programs haven't been hammered out by the congressional agriculture committees charged with…

Wired for marketing By: 11/17/2011 @ 2:47pm

Two years ago, Successful Farming magazine described new ways to market grain electronically online. Some of those ways are still available, and some new players have entered the market. Following are two new…

Ethanol: at the cliff's edge? By: 11/17/2011 @ 11:30am

Whatever you think of ethanol, it could well be the most emotional fuel on the planet. Midwestern farmers have invested in ethanol plants and see it as energy that's green and homegrown. Environmentalists…

China's hogs need U.S. beans By: 11/17/2011 @ 10:44am

When it comes to soybeans, Jerry Gidel is a bull in China's shop of food imports.China's huge soybean market accounts for two of the three reasons the analyst thinks export demand for U.S. soybeans…

More ag uncertainty than ever? By: 11/11/2011 @ 4:53pm

The experts assembled at a recent ag outlook meeting could hardly be described as pessimistic.Cattle feeders and hog finishers can at least lock in a break even margin months ahead, according to Extension…

No farm bill deal yet By: 11/10/2011 @ 2:36pm

One of the reasons there is still no farm bill to offer to the deficit trimming Super Committee in Congress is that members of the ag committees still haven’t seen a written draft of the bill.That’s the…

Getting closer on a farm bill By: 11/08/2011 @ 4:15pm

Members of congressional agriculture committees are learning more about the shape of a farm bill that may go soon to the deficit cutting super committee but regional disputes are still holding it…

Group backs conservation consolidation By: 11/04/2011 @ 2:57pm

Jon Scholl, president of American Farmland Trust, told reporters Friday that his group favors streamlining the conservation title of the next farm bill, reducing the alphabet soup of programs from more than 20…

Debt delays By: 11/03/2011 @ 9:49am

Congressional ag committees could miss a chance to submit farm bill ideas to the Super Committee charged with drafting a deficit trimming plan by November 23, a member of the Senate Agriculture Committee said…

Ag Committees struggle with farm bill By: 11/01/2011 @ 5:26pm

A week ago, Senate Agriculture Committee member Chuck Grassley (R-IA) expected to be reading a draft of an abbreviated farm bill that the House and Senate ag committees expected  to submit to Congress’s…

Ag committees will meet deadline -- Grassley By: 10/25/2011 @ 2:02pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) a veteran member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, said Tuesday that he believes the leaders of congressional ag committees will finish drafting partial farm bill…

A blow to direct payments By: 10/21/2011 @ 3:01pm

By a vote of 85 to 14 early Friday morning, the Senate approved an amendment to a 2012 spending bill that ends direct payments to farmers with annual incomes exceeding $1 million.   Fiscal conservative…

Farm Bill ideas compared By: 10/19/2011 @ 5:29pm

Carl Zulauf, the Ohio State University economist who helped design the ACRE program in the 2008 Farm Bill, has put together a comparison of 10 of the top farm bill ideas, including those from farm and…

Key farm groups back revenue plan By: 10/19/2011 @ 3:58pm

Three influential farm groups Wednesday urged the House and Senate agriculture committees to replace the main existing commodity programs with a revenue-based risk management plan that would pay for some…

Debate intensifies over federal budget cuts to agriculture By: 10/18/2011 @ 1:26pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), a veteran member of the Senate Agriculture Committee, told Agriculture.com Tuesday how he expects proposed cuts to USDA spending to break down when his committee and the House…

Ag committees pick number for budget cuts By: 10/17/2011 @ 3:49pm

Both the Senate and House agriculture committees announced Monday that they’re recommending a $23 billion reduction in farm bill spending over the next 10 years to the congressional “super committee”…

Lula da Silva’s Brazilian charisma By: 10/14/2011 @ 11:44am

In a speech at a World Food Prize event in Des Moines, Iowa. Friday, former Brazilian President, Luis Inacio Lula da Silva described his country’s successful programs to eliminate poverty and hunger as a big…

Cellulosic ethanol falls short By: 10/05/2011 @ 5:08pm

For two years, now, the EPA has given fuel blenders a waiver from using the cellulosic ethanol mandated by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. That’s because, except for small amounts from…

Thrifty grants for start-ups By: 09/30/2011 @ 3:16pm

After earning an agronomy degree at Iowa State University in 2010, Nathan Anderson returned to his family's corn and soybean farm near Cherokee, Iowa, with dreams of improving an already well-run…

Hedging margins By: 09/30/2011 @ 2:54pm

Last July, Bruce Peterson, who farms with his brothers, Brian and Chris, near Northfield, Minnesota, was getting ready to buy some of his fertilizer for the 2012 corn crop.“Once we buy fertilizer, we'll…

Ag's global meetup By: 09/30/2011 @ 9:33am

At the Community Food Security Coalition meeting in Des Moines, Iowa, in October 2009, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack drew boos when he disagreed with an activist who called crop biotechnology dangerous and…

China wants quality soybeans at a good price By: 09/23/2011 @ 11:05am

A busload of visitors from China eagerly looked at partially shucked ears of corn and ripening soybeans at the farm of John Heisdorffer’s family near Keota, Iowa, Thursday afternoon. The group of 23 was…

Group calls for effective ag cuts By: 09/20/2011 @ 2:38pm

The National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition Tuesday said it’s calling on Congress’s deficit cutting “super committee,” to make cuts in ag spending that it says would be fairer and more effective…

GOP pushes back on ag cuts By: 09/20/2011 @ 11:05am

Republican agricultural leaders in Congress are rejecting most of President Barack Obama’s proposed spending cuts for agriculture. House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (R-OK) and Senator Pat…

Obama would cut ag programs By: 09/19/2011 @ 4:05pm

When it comes to farm policy, Congress often ignores White House proposals. It passed the 2008 Farm Bill over President George W. Bush’s veto and it’s possible both parties will ignore some of the ideas…

Corn Growers offer real safety net By: 09/16/2011 @ 1:02pm

After more than a year of careful study and preparation, the National Corn Growers Association unveiled a 2012 farm bill idea that, if adopted by Congress, could offer farmers a safety net program that works…

CHIMPing away at conservation By: 09/08/2011 @ 3:37pm

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA), a member of two powerful ag committees, told Agriculture.com today that he’ll offer an amendment to cut direct payments as part of an effort to restore funding for conservation and…

Measuring margins by the bushel By: 08/31/2011 @ 3:36pm

To outsiders, Jeff Taylor's picturesque farm near Gilbert, Iowa, looks idyllic. It has a pond for his passions of fishing and water skiing, and sheds for his kids' livestock projects. Yet, as Taylor…

Harkin backs ethanol expansion By: 08/24/2011 @ 4:04pm

Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) told the American Coalition for Ethanol Wednesday that he’ll continue to work for passage of a bill that would expand ethanol’s access to markets.It won’t be easy.Harkin…

More expensive ethanol? By: 08/23/2011 @ 6:05pm

Some in the ethanol industry have been saying they can survive without the federal 45 cent-a-gallon tax credit that expires this year. The Renewable Fuel Standard 2 still requires the blenders to use about 13…

Ethanol expects another tough year By: 08/23/2011 @ 1:23pm

The American Coalition for Ethanol is holding its annual meeting in Des Moines, Iowa this week without a lot to celebrate. The group’s president, Lars Herseth, joked Tuesday that ACE relocated one session of…

DOT: No changes to road rules By: 08/10/2011 @ 9:29am

If you haul grain as part of a crop share agreement with your landlord, you’re not going to have to get a commercial driver’s license (CDL).That’s what the Department of Transportation says in an…

Farm Credit gets boost from downgrade By: 08/09/2011 @ 4:48pm

Farmers who borrow from the Farm Credit System don’t need to join the panic on Wall Street yet. If anything, the volatility in stocks is making bonds more attractive to investors, including those who buy…

Will farm programs escape deep cuts? By: 08/04/2011 @ 9:21am

No one really knows how the next step in trimming the growth in federal spending will play out, but it’s a hot topic in Washington.Congressional leaders haven’t even appointed the all-powerful super…

Former Ag Committee chair has doubts By: 08/01/2011 @ 4:07pm

Representative Collin Peterson (D-MN) isn’t one of the liberal Democrats who are pledging to vote against the debt ceiling deal when it comes up in the House of Representatives today.But the former chairman…

Debt deal leaves ag hanging By: 08/01/2011 @ 10:16am

The debt ceiling deal hammered out over the weekend puts off making decisions on cuts to agricultural spending and tax credits for ethanol. But that’s not necessarily good news, say lobbyists who have taken…

Plan 2011 taxes now By: 07/29/2011 @ 9:13am

For Missouri farmers whose land disappeared under floodwaters last spring, Ohioans struggling with mud, and Texans whose land burned under drought-stoked wildfires, it seems like a cruel joke. But before an…

Breaching the ethanol blend wall By: 07/28/2011 @ 1:13pm

On a fence-mending trip to the Midwest in April, EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson put on a hard hat to tour a biodiesel plant in Newton, Iowa. It was a media event. Cameras clicked as reporters watched Jackson…

Futurist takes on ag trends By: 07/25/2011 @ 4:48pm

In a world that is wealthier than ever before, and in a nation with more disposable income, the next generation of farmers will have more opportunities than ever.That’s the take home message of New Mexico…

Farm sector wants debt deal soon By: 07/19/2011 @ 7:25pm

As the contentious debt ceiling negotiations in Washington approach the eleventh hour, the nation’s top farm and commodity groups are hoping to slip a letter under President Barack Obama’s door.“As…

Nutrition programs: cost or casualty? By: 07/18/2011 @ 8:48pm

In the white-knuckle showdown over raising the federal debt limit, House Republican opposition to tax increases gets a lot of press. But Democrats are just as nervous about potential cuts to favored programs…

Pushing a rock up Capitol Hill By: 07/14/2011 @ 10:35pm

The National Corn Growers Association’s Corn Congress ended in Washington Thursday, after two days of lobbying for continued support for crop insurance and ethanol, and debating the group’s own policy on…

What was lost in the ethanol compromise By: 07/07/2011 @ 6:46pm

After the ethanol compromise was announced by members of the U.S. Senate Thursday, Growth Energy’s CEO, Tom Buis, pointed out that a compromise means that opposing interests give up something.In fact, the…

Groups welcome ethanol compromise By: 07/07/2011 @ 11:31am

Ethanol supporters in the U.S. Senate on Thursday announced a deal that will preserve about $668 million in tax credits for the industry while allowing the main 45 cent-a-gallon blenders credit to expire on…

The return of the native grasses By: 06/23/2011 @ 10:57pm

Nathan Anderson stood at the top of a pasture steep enough to be a ski slope.“Two years ago this was bluegrass and dandelions,” he said, as a group visitors looked over green bunches of big and little…

Moving toward less ag spending By: 06/16/2011 @ 6:12pm

Thursday the Senate voted to kill ethanol’s tax credit but refused, by a vote of 41 to 59, to pass an amendment from Senator John McCain (R-AZ) that would prevent the USDA from spending funds on blender…

A symbolic blow to ethanol By: 06/16/2011 @ 1:48pm

In a second try to eliminate ethanol’s tax credit Thursday, ethanol backers from both parties suffered a big, and at this point symbolic, defeat when the Senate voted 73 to 27 to end the increasingly…

Another shot at ethanol this afternoon By: 06/16/2011 @ 9:28am

The Senate is expected to vote again on the Coburn-Feinstein amendment to end the ethanol blenders credit at 2 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time. Another amendment that would prevent the USDA from spending Farm…

Ethanol faces showdown Tuesday By: 06/13/2011 @ 11:31pm

Ethanol lobbyists and farm groups are urging members of the U.S. Senate to vote against an amendment that Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) is expected to offer Tuesday that would end the 45 cent-a-gallon blenders…

More hail insurance? By: 06/10/2011 @ 3:44pm

Hail has already hit areas of the Corn Belt and, if you don't yet have coverage that supplements your federal crop insurance, an industry consultant, Steve Griffin, says now might be a good time to buy…

Iowa Representatives: restore some USDA funds By: 06/03/2011 @ 4:05pm

Three Iowa Democrats in the House of Representatives said Friday that they’ve asked the Senate agriculture appropriations subcommittee to restore some of the funds that were cut in a House appropriations…

Are the funds for ag and ethanol drying up? By: 05/27/2011 @ 3:54pm

On Tuesday of this week the House Agriculture Appropriations subcommittee approved a 2012 spending bill for agriculture with discretionary spending that would be 26% lower than in 2010, if the bill becomes…

Agony of prevented planting By: 05/27/2011 @ 10:30am

As the final planting date for federal crop insurance on corn approaches many areas of a waterlogged Corn Belt, farmers are wrestling with a decision that gives even ag economists a headache.In some areas…

Fair and sunny By: 05/23/2011 @ 11:52am

Before the shopping mall, there was the fair -- outdoor sites for trade and revelry with a history stretching back to the Romans and medieval church feast days. America's fairs have farm roots, starting…

Booming land market continues By: 05/13/2011 @ 3:03pm

In the first quarter of 2011, land values in the U.S. heartland surged by 20% over a year earlier, according to a just-released survey of bankers in the Federal Reserve’s Tenth District ­– which…

During oil bashing, ethanol takes a punch By: 05/12/2011 @ 3:00pm

On Thursday members of the Senate Finance Committee asked executives from the nation’s top five oil companies why they shouldn’t give up $2 billion a year in tax credits to help trim the federal deficit…

Feed grain end users want easier opt-out for CRP By: 05/10/2011 @ 2:19pm

Seventy-two groups that represent livestock producers, feed processors and exporters have sent a letter to congressional ag committees asking that the 2012 Farm Bill make it easier for farmers to opt out of…

Harkin frustrated by ethanol infighting By: 05/05/2011 @ 4:27pm

All of the major ethanol groups backed a bill introduced in the Senate this week that would extend ethanol tax credits for a few more years after the current 45 cent-a-gallon credit expires in…

USDA proposal to create national leafy green marketing agreement By: 05/04/2011 @ 5:13pm

Gene McAvoy, County Extension Director and Regional Vegetable Agent for Hendry County Extension in LaBelle, Florida, tells us:The USDA is moving forward with rulemaking for the National Leafy Green Marketing…

Bill phases down ethanol tax credit By: 05/04/2011 @ 3:37pm

A bipartisan coalition of Midwest senators, headed by Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Democrat Kent Conrad of North Dakota, introduced a bill Wednesday that would extend the tax credit for ethanol over…

A fair education By: 05/04/2011 @ 10:38am

Before the shopping mall, there was the fair – outdoor sites for trade and revelry with a history stretching back to the Romans and medieval church feast days. America's fairs have farm roots, starting…

POET CEO meets with EPA administrator and Vilsack By: 04/21/2011 @ 1:31pm

When Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson visited Iowa earlier this week, they showed their support for biofuels by visiting the Renewable Energy Group biodiesel plant in…

A friendly visit from the EPA By: 04/19/2011 @ 3:54pm

To say that farmers are worried about what the Environmental Protection Agency may require of them is an understatement. The agency is doing a five-year review of its standards for dust emissions under the…

Jackson takes on EPA myths By: 04/13/2011 @ 2:20pm

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson says that some of the things you know about her agency are simply myths. Jackson has been attending hearings on Capitol Hill so often lately that members of Congress have…

Tougher decisions coming for ag spending By: 04/12/2011 @ 8:44pm

The compromise bill that averted a government shutdown and trimmed nearly $40 billion from federal spending this year included about $3 billion in cuts to USDA programs. But if there’s one thing agricultural…

Budget cuts will affect agriculture By: 04/12/2011 @ 2:59pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said that the compromise agreement to trim 2011 federal spending will speed up some cuts that the administration had already proposed for 2012 and will give his agency about…

Will the farm boom last? By: 04/11/2011 @ 3:09pm

USDA’s chief economist and an official of the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City shared a crystal ball for crop farmers Monday that’s still pretty rosy, at least in the short term—but don’t count on…

Senate targets ethanol infrastructure By: 04/07/2011 @ 3:59pm

The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee Thursday gave Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) a chance to promote a bill that would open larger markets for ethanol. It could be the first step toward passing…

Labor plan with Colombia improves FTA odds By: 04/06/2011 @ 4:02pm

The White House announced Wednesday that it has reached an agreement with the government of Colombia aimed at protecting the rights of labor leaders in that country, which it hopes will improve chances of…

Path to Prosperity goes through your fields By: 04/05/2011 @ 2:03pm

House Budget Committee Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI) released his 2012 budget proposal this week, called "The Path to Prosperity" and his belt-tightening ideas include agriculture.Ryan focuses mainly on reforms to…

Harkin worries about ethanol tax credit By: 03/31/2011 @ 3:49pm

A bipartisan amendment introduced in early March to repeal the 45 cent-a-gallon tax credit died in the Senate this week when one of its sponsors, Senator Tom Coburn (R-OK) said he would not hold up a…

Iowa farmland jumps 25% By: 03/22/2011 @ 3:09pm

Farmland values are racing ahead at a breathless pace, according to the latest survey released Tuesday by the Iowa Farm and Land Chapter of the Realtors Land Institute.Average cropland values in Iowa have…

Ohio leads in boosting bio-based products By: 03/09/2011 @ 4:55pm

Ohio is a national leader in requiring state entities, colleges and universities to give purchasing preference to bio-based products when the products are comparable in price, performance and availability.A…

Last-minute insurance checkup By: 03/08/2011 @ 3:14pm

If you’re still considering changes in crop insurance coverage before the March 15 deadline that applies to the Corn Belt, Kansas State University is offering a webinar this Friday, March 11, at noon CST.If…

Last minute check on crop insurance By: 03/07/2011 @ 1:44pm

If you’re still considering changes in crop insurance coverage before the March 15 deadline that applies to the Corn Belt, Kansas State University is offering a webinar this Friday, March 11, at noon CST.If…

Classic is a place to meet for farmers in TV ads By: 03/06/2011 @ 9:16pm

If you live in farm country, you’ve probably seen them –– the almost poetic television ads that are a montage of landscapes, bountiful harvests and photogenic families. They begin with the…

Classic is a place to meet for farmers in TV ads By: 03/06/2011 @ 9:16pm

If you live in farm country, you’ve probably seen them –– the almost poetic television ads that are a montage of landscapes, bountiful harvests and photogenic families. They begin with the…

NCGA supports shifting direct payments By: 03/05/2011 @ 9:05pm

Delegates to the National Corn Growers Association’s annual Corn Congress took a step toward reducing the direct payment program at their meeting in Tampa, Florida Saturday.   They changed their…

Corn growers pump up ethanol By: 03/05/2011 @ 8:26pm

After voting for shifts in farm policy and ethanol subsidies Saturday, members of the National Corn Growers Association went through an exercise that generated little controversy.Delegates to the Corn Congress…

Rabobank’s ways to reduce risk By: 03/04/2011 @ 3:06pm

Farm debt is rising along with land values and a volatile commodities market, but Rabo Agrifinance has several tools to help its farm borrowers withstand any downturns.That’s the view from the Commodity…

Vilsack, Lucas share policy visions By: 03/04/2011 @ 11:30am

Two of the most powerful agricultural leaders in Washington, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and House Agriculture Committee Chairman Frank Lucas (R-OK) spoke to the Commodity Classic in Tampa, Florida…

USB targets livestock support By: 03/04/2011 @ 7:57am

Soybean farmers seem to have forgotten who their biggest customer is as the livestock industry has separated from crop production, leaders of the United Soybean Board said Friday at the Commodity Classic in…

Spending bill spares E15 By: 03/02/2011 @ 12:09pm

A spending bill that keeps the federal government going for two more weeks will not stop EPA from putting regulations in place for 15% ethanol blends (E15) or cut food programs for the poor, as a House bill…

Global polls shows subsidy support By: 03/01/2011 @ 8:45am

A strong majority of farmers around the globe back continued subsidies for agriculture, according to a poll conducted by the British publication, Farmers Weekly, with cooperation from Successful Farming…

Ethanol group: cutting E15 hurts U.S. energy security By: 02/24/2011 @ 2:58pm

Leaders of Growth Energy said Thursday that stopping EPA from writing gas pump labels and rules for 15% ethanol blends (E15) is the wrong thing to do when U.S. national security is threatened by oil…

Signs of trouble for ethanol By: 02/22/2011 @ 3:38pm

One of the strongest supporters of ethanol in the U.S. Senate, Republican Chuck Grassley of Iowa, conceded Tuesday that last week’s vote to slow expansion of ethanol’s market by blocking EPA funds for E15…

Bad time to kill E15, retired Navy leader says By: 02/21/2011 @ 3:52pm

On a day when Libya teeters on the brink of civil war and cuts oil production, Retired Vice Admiral Denny McGinn takes little comfort from an announcement by the remaining members of OPEC that it will…

Ohio Corn and Wheat Growers reassure consumers By: 02/16/2011 @ 3:43pm

Rising food prices have consumers worried in the U.S. and they’re being blamed for unrest in the Middle East, with some American environmentalists saying corn ethanol is the real culprit. To respond…

Groups scramble to save ag spending By: 02/15/2011 @ 4:18pm

On the day that President Barack Obama defended his administration’s proposed cuts to federal spending in 2012, farm groups in Washington were fighting to save agricultural programs from even deeper…

Obama’s USDA budget to shrink $3 billion in 2012 By: 02/14/2011 @ 5:25pm

The Obama Administration’s proposed budget for the 2012 fiscal year that starts next October would fall by about $3 billion from the Administration’s 2011 request to Congress. The 2012 total spending…

COMBO merges revenue products By: 02/14/2011 @ 1:49pm

After long anticipation, USDA’s Risk Management Agency last summer unveiled its common crop insurance policy, or COMBO. Since then, experts have pored over it, finding few surprises, at least in the…

Making ethanol even greener By: 02/14/2011 @ 10:33am

For some time, a cloud has dimmed the greenness farmers see in ethanol. It’s a fog spewed by Washington interest groups. It leads some to believe that higher corn prices loosely tied to ethanol also…

McGovern vows to fight for global school lunch program By: 02/12/2011 @ 4:39pm

After learning Friday of a House Appropriations Committee plan to trim international food aid by $544 million this year, former Senator George McGovern (D-SD) told Agriculture.com Saturday that he plans to…

Food aid faces nearly 30% cut under House budget proposal By: 02/11/2011 @ 4:06pm

  In 2008, former senators and presidential candidates George McGovern (D-SD) and Bob Dole  (R-KS) earned the World Food Prize for their bipartisan achievement, convincing Congress to pass…

Short sugar supplies add to ethanol demand By: 02/09/2011 @ 1:03pm

Tight world supplies of sugar are contributing to the demand for corn in Wednesday’s USDA in two ways, by increasing exports of U.S. ethanol into markets usually served by Brazil, and by increasing…

Bullish report to boost crop futures By: 02/09/2011 @ 8:07am

Look for old crop corn, soybean and wheat futures to be sharply up today following a monthly USDA supply and demand report that cuts ending stocks of corn in the U.S. to 675 million bushels, down from…

USDA lowers corn ending stocks By: 02/09/2011 @ 7:38am

Today's USDA supply and demand report lowers corn ending stocks. According to the report released this morning by the World Agricultural Outlook Board:"U.S. corn ending stocks for 2010/11 are projected…

Time to think of crop insurance By: 02/08/2011 @ 9:17pm

For some people February means Valentine’s Day. But for farmers, it’s one of the most important  business planning months of the year.  When this month ends, USDA’s Risk Management Agency will…

More no-till benefit By: 01/26/2011 @ 2:12pm

No-till and a corn-soybean rotation can significantly cut field emissions of the greenhouse gas nitrous oxide, a Purdue University study shows.Agronomist Tony Vyn says no-till reduces nitrous oxide…

Obama on trade, energy By: 01/26/2011 @ 10:49am

In case you missed it, President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address touched on some issues important to agriculture, including energy and trade.Here’s what Obama had to say about energy:“At the…

Biofuels' near future By: 01/25/2011 @ 5:20pm

The next step the nation’s move toward energy independence is still likely to come from corn and soybeans, a panel of industry experts told the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association in Des Moines, Iowa…

EPA grows E15 By: 01/21/2011 @ 1:33pm

The EPA widened a crack in the so-called blend wall Friday, announcing that it has approved the use of gasoline blends of 15% ethanol for use in light passenger vehicles made for the 2001 model year…

Vilsack announces grants and loan guarantees for biofuels By: 01/20/2011 @ 3:45pm

On Thursday Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced grants and loan guarantees to all regions of the country to foster renewable fuel development through programs authorized by the Energy Title of…

Farm Bureau delegates keep options open on farm bill By: 01/11/2011 @ 8:51pm

Farm Bureau delegates voted to give their lobbyists the flexibility to work for continuing nearly all of the existing commodity programs at their annual policy debate in Atlanta, Georgia Tuesday, even…

Vilsack takes conciliatory tone to Farm Bureau By: 01/10/2011 @ 5:30pm

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack braved a rare Atlanta snow and ice storm Monday to thank members of the American Farm Bureau Federation for what they do as farmers and ranchers and pledged to…

Expo chairman cites growth in second year By: 01/09/2011 @ 1:09pm

Martin Richenhagen, CEO of ACGO and chairman of this year’s Ag Connect Expo in Atlanta said Sunday that the machinery and technology show’s second year drew more farmers. Registration for the show…

Farm Bureau president vows to fight EPA regulation By: 01/09/2011 @ 10:23am

Speaking to the 92nd annual meeting of the American Farm Bureau Federation in Atlanta, Georgia Sunday, the group’s president Bob Stallman vowed to fight overregulation. He announced that Farm Bureau…

Plenty of soy oil for fuel By: 01/08/2011 @ 5:10pm

The biodiesel industry is slowly coming back to life after a year without a $1-a-gallon tax credit, and there’s plenty of soybean oil available when it does. That’s part of the message that the United…

Ethanol 'all about national security' By: 01/08/2011 @ 3:04pm

To farmers who pioneered the ethanol industry, the goal was creating another market for corn. To retired General Wesley Clark, it’s about patriotism and national security. Clark, who is co-chairman…

Korean Trade Agreement best deal for ag in years By: 01/08/2011 @ 12:15pm

Korea’s ambassador to the U.S. and a former top ag negotiator the U.S. government told farmers why passage of a free trade agreement is crucial for agriculture Saturday at the AgConnect Expo in…

Grains Council scrambles to answer dumping case By: 01/06/2011 @ 1:43pm

With only 20 days allowed to respond to a December 28 antidumping case against U.S. exports of distillers grains to China, the U.S. Grains Council has been working around the clock to help this…

Grassley predicts lawsuit will fail By: 12/21/2010 @ 1:36pm

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said Tuesday that he believes a lawsuit filed this week to challenge EPA approval of E15 in newer cars will fail. “I think they’re going to loose because I think the…

Biodiesel industry finally gets good news By: 12/17/2010 @ 2:38pm

The Biodiesel industry is breathing a sigh of relief today as the compromise tax bill passed by Congress heads to the White House for President Barack Obama’ signature.  The law restores the…

Farm bill funding squeeze By: 12/15/2010 @ 3:06pm

By now,  it’s common wisdom that a tight federal budget is likely to make writing the next farm  bill harder than usual. At the Iowa Soybean Association’s annual policy…

City kids learn real ag By: 12/15/2010 @ 1:48pm

In September, I visited the cornfield where my son, Nate, worked last summer. The rented land on the Neal Smith National Wildlife Refuge at Prairie City, Iowa, is where Iowa State University (ISU)…

Insuring dairy By: 12/15/2010 @ 11:06am

Gary Kregel welcomes new ideas that work on his northeast Iowa dairy farm. Just out of college, he was among the first to use embryo transplants in his 240-cow herd. Today, he’s also among very few…

Best case for ethanol credit next year: gradual phaseout By: 12/14/2010 @ 9:07am

So far, Senator Chuck Grassley and other Midwestern senators from both parties seem to have salvaged ethanol and biodiesel tax credits for another year. But next year they’re not expecting to…

How the stars aligned for ethanol By: 12/10/2010 @ 5:06pm

In spite of the coverage you’re seeing of angry liberals in the House and of Senator Bernie Sanders’ (I-VT) filibuster in the Senate, the Obama-congressional compromise on extending tax cuts is very likely…

Looking ahead to 2011 By: 12/10/2010 @ 3:55pm

It's a time-honored tradition in publishing: During the slow news cycle near the year's end, we look back at the year that was and make fearless predictions about the new one. After talking to…

Ethanol lobby looks ahead By: 12/10/2010 @ 1:25pm

Leaders of Growth Energy, the newest of several groups lobbying for ethanol, expressed thanks Friday for the Senate’s inclusion of a 45 cent a gallon tax credit for ethanol in a tax bill the is…

Ethanol groups pleased with Senate bill By: 12/09/2010 @ 11:24pm

Groups that lobby for the ethanol industry thanked supporters in the Senate Thursday for getting a one-year extension of the 45 cent per gallon tax credit included in pending tax legislation.Brian Jennings of…

Ethanol tax credit set at 45 cents By: 12/09/2010 @ 6:19pm

The Senate's tax bill will include a 45 cent-per-gallon ethanol tax credit for one more year, through the end of 2011, a spokesperson for Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) told Agriculture.com at Thursday…

New Soybean Board Chairman will oversee record budget By: 12/09/2010 @ 2:18pm

On Thursday, Marc Curtis, of Leland, Mississippi, was elected chairman of the United Soybean Board, which administers the national soybean checkoff of 0.5% of the initial gross sales of…

Lower rate for ethanol credit likely By: 12/09/2010 @ 11:14am

Democrats in Congress who don't like the tax extension compromise worked out between the Obama administration and Republicans are still fighting for changes in the tax break extension.One of them, Senator…

Tax deal includes ethanol, biodiesel credits By: 12/07/2010 @ 9:51am

After meeting with Republican leaders Tuesday morning Senator Chuck Grassley, the ranking GOP member of the Senate Finance Committee, told reporters that 71 tax credits that expired in 2009 as well as credits…

Looking ahead to 2011 By: 12/06/2010 @ 1:45pm

It's a time-honored tradition in publishing. During the slow news cycle at the end of the holidays, we look back at the year that was and make fearless predictions about the new one. After talking to…

E15 will power NASCAR By: 12/03/2010 @ 4:30pm

The ethanol industry scored a public relations coup Thursday when NASCAR officials announced at their annual awards meeting in Las Vegas that its 2011 races will be powered by Sunoco Green E15. It’s…

Tax bill includes ethanol credit By: 12/03/2010 @ 2:51pm

Late Thursday Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-MT) unveiled a bill to extend middle class tax cuts that also includes a one-year extension of the ethanol tax credit through 2011…

Will a tax deal leave out ethanol credits? By: 12/02/2010 @ 12:23pm

As behind-the-scenes negotiations of the fate of Bush-era tax cuts continue, one senator who supports keeping a tax credit for ethanol said Thursday that he’s not certain of its fate. Senator Tom…

Farm groups back $5 million estate tax exemption By: 11/30/2010 @ 2:39pm

At least 10 groups agreed on one part of the looming tax battle in Congress next month. On a day when President Barack Obama and Republican and Democratic congressional leaders met to talk about the Bush…

Boatloads of meat By: 11/19/2010 @ 9:29am

James Herring is CEO of Friona Industries, the fourth biggest cattle feeder in the nation with four Texas Panhandle feedlots of 275,000-head capacity combined. He and the rest of the U.S. livestock…

Hedging margins By: 11/18/2010 @ 11:21am

Norm Brown, who farms about 1,500 acres near Aledo, Illinois, and finishes 40,000 hogs a year, is fine-tuning the goal of every farmer – making a profitable margin. For decades, soybean processors…

Feeding a growing giant By: 11/17/2010 @ 3:55pm

China is HUGE. The most populous nation on earth, with 1.3 billion people, is now the planet’s second biggest economy after the U.S. It’s big in area, too, ranking fourth in the world.Big as China is, two…

Don't panic, lock in margins By: 11/16/2010 @ 8:13am

Even with the recent selloff in corn and bean futures, one specialist isn't swerving from his advice to lock in margins, in part by starting to sell 2011 crops at prices that are relatively high."People…

Don't panic, lock in margins By: 11/12/2010 @ 4:04pm

Even with Friday's selloff in corn and bean futures, Iowa State University Extension farm management specialist Steve Johnson isn't swerving from his advice to lock in margins, in part by starting to…

GIPSA debate heats up with economic study By: 11/10/2010 @ 5:10pm

A USDA rule intended to put teeth in the 89-year-old Packers and Stockyards Act was debated at dueling press conferences held in Kansas City, Missouri, Wednesday as the National Association of…

Obama’s own fringe group problem -- environmentalists By: 11/04/2010 @ 4:10pm

Remember Terri Schiavo? The Florida woman with brain damage whose husband sought a court order to pull her feeding tube while her parents and family fought back? Congress voted to make it a federal case (which…

Ethanol lobbyist sees little shift in policy from GOP wave By: 11/03/2010 @ 5:00pm

Bob Dinneen, president of the Renewable Fuels Association, told reporters Wednesday that he doesn’t expect a major shift in support for ethanol after the Republican takeover of the House of…

Next farm bill likely to shrink in new Congress By: 11/03/2010 @ 3:54pm

With more than half of the 28 Democrats on the House Agriculture Committee defeated in Tuesday’s election, the new Republican dominated panel is likely to have a lot of fresh faces. Farm groups are…

Growth Energy’s new COO optimistic over election results for ethanol By: 11/02/2010 @ 3:29pm

This week a director of the ethanol lobbying group, Growth Energy, may have surfed the Republican wave in Congress to a higher profile with the group. Growth promoted Jim Nussle, an eight term former…

Grassley: ag will gain from today’s election By: 11/02/2010 @ 11:33am

Senator Chuck Grassley,  the top ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee and one incumbent who appears headed to victory in today’s election, predicts more bipartisanship in his own…

Panel sees ethanol as expensive, inefficient By: 10/19/2010 @ 2:58pm

The food versus fuel debate found a new audience Tuesday at the Global Financial Leadership Conference in Naples, Florida sponsored by the Chicago Mercantile Exchange.The consensus of a panel of experts was…

Hunger politics grow tougher By: 10/14/2010 @ 2:45pm

To David Beckmann, feeding the poor is a moral obligation tied to his Christian faith as a Lutheran Minister and president of Bread for the World. “God is calling us to get with the program,” he…

EPA set to back limited E15 By: 10/13/2010 @ 10:48am

The Environmental Protection Agency is expected to announce later today that it’s approving limited use of 15% ethanol blends in cars that are 2007 models or newer. It would be the agency’s latest…

Expanding distiller grains markets By: 10/08/2010 @ 12:27pm

As the ethanol industry grows toward a 15 billion gallon market by 2015, exports of its byproduct, distillers grains, are expected to grow from 7 million metric tons (mmt) last year to 11 mmt, That’s the…

Will the ethanol tax credit shrink? By: 10/07/2010 @ 5:02pm

Distiller grains from the ethanol industry are one of the big growth sectors in agriculture, if the Export Exchange in Chicago this week is on track. Speakers at the joint meeting of the U.S. Grains Council…

U.S. Grains Council releases estimate of China’s corn crop By: 10/05/2010 @ 10:33am

China will likely harvest a corn crop of 158 million metric tons (mmt) this year, according to an in-field survey and sampling conducted by the U.S. Grains Council. The Council released its results…

2009 ACRE payments big in a few states, with few takers in most By: 10/01/2010 @ 11:27am

This week USDA released its final weighted average price for 2009 crops covered by ACRE, the last piece of information the agency needs before making payments this fall.Kansas State University ag economist Art…

Ethanol tax credit vote still likely this year—Harkin By: 09/30/2010 @ 9:20am

When the Senate adjourned yesterday it left a lot of business unfinished until the lame duck session after the November 2 elections. It includes debate over whether or  not to extend the Bush era…

South Dakotans aim to ease prevented planting penalties By: 09/29/2010 @ 4:14pm

South Dakota growers know something about excess moisture, with parts of the state getting hammered by rain just last week, after a season that saw planting delays from heavy rains last spring. …

Ethanol tax credit vote could be delayed until 2011 By: 09/28/2010 @ 11:20am

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA), shared his view of how a Republican takeover of Congress might affect agriculture Tuesday. He sees little change in farm policy in the agriculture committees, more support…

Biodiesel tax credit rejected in Senate By: 09/16/2010 @ 1:37pm

The partisan logjam broke in the Senate Thursday, long enough to pass the Small Business Jobs and Credit Act. But when Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) tossed in a small twig – an amendment to renew a…

Strong signup for CRP By: 09/14/2010 @ 12:30pm

The USDA announced Tuesday that it has accepted 4.3 million acres that were bid into the 39th general signup for the Conservation Reserve Program during the month of August.The agency had more than 50,000…

Strong signup for CRP By: 09/14/2010 @ 11:21am

The USDA announced Tuesday that it has accepted 4.3 million acres that were bid into the 39th general signup for the Conservation Reserve Program during the month of August. The agency had more than…

Managing a nightmare soybean disease By: 09/10/2010 @ 4:57pm

It sounds like the plot for a cheap horror movie: For months, a monster lives buried in the soil, only to reach up and kill healthy looking soybeans, sometimes in broad swaths across the landscape. That…

Look for markets before leaping into organics By: 09/02/2010 @ 6:05pm

The Farm Progress show might seem an odd place to set up a booth on organic farming. The Varied Industries Tent is a bastion of the latest technology for conventional agriculture. Several farmers were…

Ethanol tax credit still has a chance in Congress By: 09/01/2010 @ 7:40pm

Iowa Secretary of Agriculture Bill Northey and Growth Energy CEO Tom Buis told reporters and members of the ethanol industry Wednesday that they believe Congress is likely to renew the ethanol tax credit…

China’s corn crop could grow By: 09/01/2010 @ 10:14am

Widespread flooding in China this summer is thought to have damaged parts of that country’s corn and soybean crops. But a grains and oilseeds analyst for Rabobank, says the global lender’s Beijing staff is…

China’s corn crop could grow By: 09/01/2010 @ 10:07am

Widespread flooding in China this summer is thought to have damaged parts of that country’s corn and soybean crops. But a grains and oilseeds analyst for Rabobank, says the global lender’s Beijing…

Energy bill less likely to pass without ethanol included, Harkin says By: 08/05/2010 @ 2:31pm

The U.S. Senate begins its August recess next week without passing even a scaled down energy bill. If the bill comes up when it returns in September, a bipartisan group of midwestern senators will try to amend…

Energy bill less likely to pass without ethanol included, Harkin says By: 08/04/2010 @ 11:00pm

The U.S. Senate begins its August recess next week without passing even a scaled down energy bill. If the bill comes up when it returns in September, a bipartisan group of midwestern senators will try to amend…

Senators get some answers on E15 By: 08/03/2010 @ 10:17am

A bipartisan group of senators met with EPA administrator Lisa Jackson and a Department of Energy (DOE) official Monday to learn more about why a request for higher ethanol blends is taking so long. They…

Senators get some answers on E15 By: 08/02/2010 @ 11:00pm

A bipartisan group of senators met with EPA administrator Lisa Jackson and a Department of Energy (DOE) official Monday to learn more about why a request for higher ethanol blends is taking so long. They got…

Harkin, Lugar, others, want answers from EPA and DOE By: 07/30/2010 @ 2:10pm

A bipartisan group of senators who support ethanol will meet with EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and Energy Secretary Steven Chu Monday to try to find out why industry requests for higher blends of the…

Lawmakers want ethanol answers from EPA and DOE By: 07/29/2010 @ 11:00pm

A bipartisan group of senators who support ethanol will meet with EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson and Energy Secretary Steven Chu Monday to try to find out why industry requests for higher blends of the…

Ag is bright spot in slowly growing economy By: 07/26/2010 @ 11:00pm

Terry Barr, an economist who heads CoBank's Knowledge Exchange, isn't one of the analysts who's looking for a double dip recession.Barr expects the U.S. economy to continue growing at a rate of…

Ag is bright spot in slowly growing economy By: 07/26/2010 @ 6:10pm

Terry Barr, an economist who heads CoBank's Knowledge Exchange, isn't one of the analysts who's looking for a double dip recession.Barr expects the U.S. economy to continue growing at a rate of…

Veterans of the 1980s look at today’s farm debt By: 07/22/2010 @ 11:00pm

Today they have the appearance of grizzled veterans, a little grayer than when they started in 1989 to tackle a woeful hodgepodge of financial record keeping methods that left lenders and farmers…

Better accounting is taking less time By: 07/21/2010 @ 10:35am

Thanks to GPS-based field mapping and harvest data, it's getting easier to use managerial accounting, says Paul Gorman, a farm management specialist who has taught farmers better record keeping at South…

Better accounting is taking less time By: 07/20/2010 @ 11:00pm

Thanks to GPS-based field mapping and harvest data, it's getting easier to use managerial accounting, says Paul Gorman, a farm management specialist who has taught farmers better record keeping at South…

Stick with ethanol tax credit, Grassley says By: 07/20/2010 @ 11:02am

Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) said Tuesday that he doesn't support a proposal to shift federal support for ethanol from a tax credit to building ethanol pipelines, blender pumps and more flexible fuel…

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