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Evening Edition | Tuesday, July 5, 2022

In tonight’s Evening Edition, read about crop progress around the country, agriculture policy, and an international perspective.

Crop Progress

USDA’s Crop Progress Report was released today, delayed one day from the usual Monday schedule due to the Independence Day holiday.

As of July 3, 7% of corn is silking compared with 11% for the previous five-year average. Corn in good/excellent condition dropped to 64%.

Read the latest summary from executive editor Laurie Bedord for updates on soybeans, wheat, and oats around the U.S.

XtremeAg farmers Kelly Garrett, Matt Miles and Kevin Matthews received crop-saving rains over the last week. As the crop gets closer to pollination, the farmers are hoping for a break in the heat and more frequent rains.

See photos from their farms in Iowa, Arkansas, and North Carolina in the latest article from XtremeAg.

Agriculture Policy

A recent report produced by Farm Action and Open Markets Institute, gave letter grades to three federal departments and agencies with roles enforcing antitrust laws and promoting competition: the Department of Justice, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Department of Agriculture. The DOJ and FTC both received B- scores; the USDA received a D+.

The organization cites failure to implement new rules for the Packers & Stockyards Act, which has been an ongoing struggle for the department. In 2010, the USDA failed to pass Packers & Stockyards rules and little progress has been made in the 12 years since.

“Secretary Vilsack, under the Obama administration, has already written these rules twice,” said Joe Maxwell, president of Farm Action, in an interview with the Daily Yonder. “We feel very strongly that after a year [since the executive order] they should be further along.”

A week after a House committee voted to prohibit China from purchasing U.S. agricultural land, the No. 3 House Republican leader cited national security concerns in spearheading legislation to block China from acquiring U.S. agricultural companies. The restrictions were proposed at the same time business groups sought removal of U.S. tariffs on Chinese goods, remnants of the Sino-U.S. trade war.
Chuck Abbott shares more in this recent article.

Since early this year, farm groups worried about rising production costs have called for higher reference prices, which are used in calculating crop subsidies, to be written into the 2023 farm bill. Congress is months away from drafting the farm bill, so there has been little discussion of the budgetary impact. But it could be significant, according to university economists who looked at a related concept: The reference-price escalator that was included in the 2018 farm law.

“The reference price escalator is likely to increase the reference price over the next farm bill period for a number of program commodities, including corn and soybeans,” said economists Gary Schnitkey, Krista Swanson, Nick Paulson and Jonathan Coppess of the University of Illinois and Carl Zulauf of Ohio State University.

Read what this could mean for your farm in the latest story from Chuck Abbott.

International perspective

Last month, Digital content editor Megan Schilling traveled to Denmark with agriculture journalists from around the globe. She toured biogas facilities, university research plots, farm cooperatives, and organic and seed crop farms.
The experience left her proud of her farming roots and the Successful Farming legacy.

Shilling reflects on the trip in the latest SF Blog story.

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Will you have enough on-farm storage for harvest?

I just want to see the responses
47% (23 votes)
35% (17 votes)
No, it’s going to be a bin-buster
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Maybe, depending on yields
6% (3 votes)
No, I am looking at new bins or temporary storage
4% (2 votes)
Total votes: 49
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