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Analysis shows steady progress toward 25x'25 renewable energy goal


Renewable energy produced in the United States between 2004 and 2009 grew by about 23%, according to a report issued by the leaders of the 25x’25 Alliance. Meeting the 25x’25 Goal: A Progress Report, is a 32-page analysis that details the advances made by the renewable energy sector since the Alliance was formed in 2004 toward meeting 25% of the nation’s energy needs with renewable resources from the land by 2025.
The report’s findings come from the leading renewable energy sector groups in the country and government agencies such as DOE’s Energy Information Administration. Other conclusions from the report show that:

  • · U.S. renewable energy consumption at the end of 2009 was 8.3% of total energy consumption, up from less than 6% in 2004.
  • · Ethanol production tripled in the last 5 years with 10.8 billion gallons produced in 2009, while biodiesel production climbed in 2008 to almost 700 million gallons.
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Analysis shows steady progress toward 25x’25 renewable energy goal


Renewable energy produced in the United States between 2004 and 2009 grew by about 23%, according to a report issued by the leaders of the 25x’25 Alliance. Meeting the 25x’25 Goal: A Progress Report, is a 32-page analysis that details the advances made by the renewable energy sector since the Alliance was formed in 2004 toward meeting 25% of the nation’s energy needs with renewable resources from the land by 2025.
The report’s findings come from the leading renewable energy sector groups in the country and government agencies such as DOE’s Energy Information Administration. Other conclusions from the report show that:

  • · U.S. renewable energy consumption at the end of 2009 was 8.3% of total energy consumption, up from less than 6% in 2004.
  • · Ethanol production tripled in the last 5 years with 10.8 billion gallons produced in 2009, while biodiesel production climbed in 2008 to almost 700 million gallons.
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Leaf diseases showing up early

By Ryan McAllister, CCA Team Sales Agronomist for Beck’s Hybrids

Upon traveling a good portion of the state of Ohio and most of eastern Indiana, I am beginning to see leaf diseases earlier than what I would normally expect to see them.  The most common disease present has been common rust followed by (GLS) Gray Leaf Spot, and I am just beginning to be able to find some northern corn leaf blight lesions.  All of which are earlier than normal due to the excessive and prolonged saturated rain events and warm weather.  Be scouting your fields to see if a fungicide application is warranted.  Progression up the plant is what we are looking for. It is important to protect the leaves that are ABOVE the ear leaf. Upon traveling a good portion of the state of Ohio and most of eastern Indiana, I am beginning to see leaf diseases earlier than what I would normally expect to see them. 

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Cover crops on prevented planting acres

By Alan Sundermeier, Ohio State University Extension

Those fields that never dried out to allow crop planting and now qualify as “Prevented Planting” should determine agronomic options to make the best out of this situation.

Producers are advised to check with their crop insurance company and Farm Service Agency on harvest restrictions for cover crops.  Harvest of cover crops may not be allowed until after November 1.

If a burndown or residual pre-emergence herbicide was applied earlier this spring, then check the label for restrictions on planting subsequent crops.

A cover crop will help restore the soil tilth and protect the soil from further wind or water erosion.

Germination of summer seeded cover crops will be improved if drilled versus broadcast.  If hot, dry weather occurs after seeding, a drilled seed has a better chance of establishment.

To prevent cover crops from forming viable seed, mowing or herbicide applications may be needed. 

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Weekly Crop Progress Statistics

Released June 28, 2010, by the National Agricultural Statistics Service
(NASS), Agricultural Statistics Board, U.S. Department of Agriculture.  For
information on “Crop Progress” call Julie Schmidt at (202) 720-7621, office
hours 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. ET.

Corn:  Percent Silking,
Selected States 1/
————————————–
:      Week Ending      :
:———————–: 2005-
State:Jun 27,:Jun 20,:Jun 27,: 2009
: 2010  : 2010  : 2009  : Avg.
————————————–
:            Percent
:
CO    :   0      NA       0       1
IL    :  15      NA       2       6
IN    :   8      NA       0       2
IA    :   0      NA       0       0
KS    :  11      NA       5      14
KY    :  17      NA       3      14
MI    :   0      NA       0       0
MN    :   0      NA       0       0
MO    :  20      NA       7      19
NE    :   0      NA       0       0
NC    :  80      NA      62      50
ND    :   0      NA       0       1
OH    :   1      NA       0       0
PA    :   0      NA       0       1
SD    :   0      NA       0       0
TN    :  68      NA      24      39
TX    :  51      NA      61      61
WI    :   0      NA       0       0
:
18 Sts:   7      NA       4       5
————————————–
1/  These 18 States planted 92% of
last year’s corn acreage.

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Crop insurance options for prevented planting and replanting

With the late planting season onset of heavy rainfall,  many farmers found that planting or replanting corn and soybeans was just not a feasible option. Farmers unable to plant or replant will want to start exploring their crop insurance options, said George Patrick, Purdue University agricultural economist.

“In some instances, farmers may not have been able to plant their original crop and in other instances farmers may have lost crops due to flooding,” Patrick said. “If producers have followed good farming practices, they may be eligible for different crop insurance benefits — depending on individual circumstances and the type of insurance they have.”

Farmer-based multiple peril crop insurance plans include Actual Production History (APH), Crop Revenue Coverage (CRC), Revenue Assurance (RA) and Income Protection (IP). If planting was prevented because of the weather, an insured producer could choose not to plant a crop and take a payment of 60% of the original yield guarantee level.

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OCGA Board Member Anthony Bush testifies before Congress

National Corn Growers Association Public Policy Action Team Chairman Anthony Bush, a grower from Mt. Gilead, Ohio testified before the House of Representatives Subcommittee on General Farm Commodities and Risk Management during a hearing to review U.S. farm safety net programs. The committee called this meeting to gain grower insight in advance of the 2012 farm bill.
Bush testified as part of a panel which also included representatives from American Farm Bureau Federation, National Farmers Union, National Barley Growers Association and American Soybean Association on June 24.

During his introductory remarks, Representative Collin Peterson expressed that there could be reconciliation next year. If reconciliation takes longer, the farm bill will not include any additional funding and would probably cut funding to a degree.
Acknowledging the difficult fiscal conditions, Bush pushed for more effective risk management tools. Explaining how rising input costs, coupled with an industry that is already capital intensive and operates on thin-margins, have decimated farmers in some areas, he asked the panel to provide growers with the tools they need to continue producing feed, food, fuel and fiber.
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Long-Term Ohio State Research Points to Benefits of Drainage on Field Crops

For every $1 spent on drainage technology, producers get $3 to $4 back in corn and soybean profits, according to long-term Ohio State University research.

Twenty-five years of field studies (from 1984 to 2009) at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) Northwest Agricultural Research Station in Hoyvtille showed that subsurface drainage significantly improved corn and soybean yields on poorly drained soils. Add crop rotation and some sort of conservation tillage practice and production just keeps getting better.

“Overall, a farming system that includes subsurface drainage, crop rotation, and no-till, or other conservation tillage system, provides the best long-term economic and environmental benefits for the farmer,” said Randall Reeder, an Ohio State University Extension agricultural engineer.

Reeder, who also holds an OARDC appointment, said that the long-term research was designed to evaluate the effects of drainage, tillage systems and rotation on corn and soybean yields to provide a better understanding of how to increase yields while maintaining sound conservation practices.

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Energy debate must include ethanol

As Congress prepares for an Independence Day Recess to be followed by vigorous discussion of a new energy bill, the National Corn Growers Association has stepped up its campaign to ensure that corn-based ethanol is part of the formula that brings our country to energy security and independence.

“With nearly two-thirds of our oil imported, we need to focus on a broad range of domestic fuel solutions,” said Darrin Ihnen, NCGA President, a South Dakota farmer. “Legislation is before Congress to continue much needed incentives and there is a new energy bill on the horizon, making it an important and critical time to talk about ethanol’s many environmental and economic benefits to our country.”

Front and center in the NCGA campaign is a new television ad using powerful images and common sense to stress the importance of ethanol. It will air starting Monday, June 28, on local news programs in Washington and on major cable channels such as Fox, CNN and MSNBC.

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Crop Insurance and Vomitoxin In Wheat: What are Farmers Options?

By Chris Bruynis, Assistant Professor/Extension Educator, OSU Extension

Producers that carry multi-peril crop insurance policies subsidized and reinsured by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (as overseen by the Risk Management Agency (RMA)) may be eligible for quality loss adjustments if the reason for the loss in value is due to a covered event such as the excessive precipitation received this spring. Reports coming from the elevators on harvested wheat indicate that not only are wheat yields lower than expected, but vomitoxin levels are high, ranging from 5 to 10 parts per million (ppm) in Northwest Ohio.

In order for producers to protect their rights, it is imperative to report any damage in the required time frame and seek advice from the insurance company before proceeding with harvest or destruction of the damaged crop. Failure to do so may jeopardize the claim. Crop insurance policies require that farmers notify their company within 72 hours of noticing a loss.

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Legalities of Vomitoxin in wheat for buyers and sellers

By Robert Moore, Wright Law Co. LPA

Head scab is causing legal headaches for buyers and sellers of Ohio wheat.The unusually wet spring has predictably caused disease problems in Ohio’s wheat crop. In addition to head scab and other more common diseases, vomitoxin is being found in this year’s crop. Vomitoxin is a mycotoxin that causes suppressed appetite in livestock and can be harmful to people as well.

Producers with a contract

Producers who have a contract with a buyer must look to the contract to determine their rights. All provisions, including any small print on the back of the contract, must be read entirely before assessing legal rights. The language of the contract is what matters; any verbal agreements made outside the contract have very little effect in enforcing legal rights. Even if the producer and buyer agree to certain terms, if the terms do not find their way onto the contract then the parties are probably not bound by the terms.

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Wet fields still foiling farmers

Farmers who can’t get into their cropfields to work because of excessive June rainfall shouldn’t surrender to Mother Nature, Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service specialists say.

There was no shortage of  in the month’s first 23 days, leaving thousands of acres of corn, soybeans and hay either in standing water or in drenched soils, and producers desperate to tend to their crops.

There’s still time for growers to work their fields if weather conditions improve and soils dry, said Tony Vyn, cropping systems specialist.

On the positive side, the rain, heat and humidity has accelerated corn crop development — so much so that many crops have outgrown the ability of some insects to feed on them, Vyn said. That rapid growth, however, is quickly making weed control more difficult and delaying necessary nitrogen fertilizer applications.

“I would encourage farmers not to give up on those applications and to keep trying,” Vyn said.

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OSU Research Points to Benefits of Drainage on Field Crops

 

For every $1 spent on drainage technology, producers get $3 to $4 back in corn and soybean profits, according to long-term Ohio State University research.

Twenty-five years of field studies (from 1984 to 2009) at the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) Northwest Agricultural Research Station in Hoyvtille showed that subsurface drainage significantly improved corn and soybean yields on poorly drained soils. Add crop rotation and some sort of conservation tillage practice and production just keeps getting better.

“Overall, a farming system that includes subsurface drainage, crop rotation, and no-till, or other conservation tillage system, provides the best long-term economic and environmental benefits for the farmer,” said Randall Reeder, an Ohio State University Extension agricultural engineer.

Reeder said that the long-term research was designed to evaluate the effects of drainage, tillage systems and rotation on corn and soybean yields to provide a better understanding of how to increase yields while maintaining sound conservation practices.

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Soybeans find their way into OSU printers

Ohio State University kicked off a new “Soy Toner Alliance” to celebrate its use of soy-based toner in many of the university’s laser printers.

The effort has been spearheaded by the university’s printing facility, UniPrint, which maintains about half of the estimated 7,000 printers on the Columbus campus. UniPrint will be using soy-based toner in any printer it maintains for which cartridges are available, currently totaling about 700. Those printers print about 800,000 pages per month.

“It is not simply about using a new product,” said E. Gordon Gee, university President. “It’s about staking our claim that this university and its leadership role in this state is making sustainability a very important part of who we are.”

The event was held at the university’s first LEED-certified “green” building on campus, the Nationwide and Ohio Farm Bureau 4-H Center. The 4-H Youth Development program is part of Ohio State University Extension, housed in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES).

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Soybeans find their way into OSU printers

Ohio State University kicked off a new “Soy Toner Alliance” to celebrate its use of soy-based toner in many of the university’s laser printers. The effort has been spearheaded by the university’s printing facility, UniPrint, which maintains about half of the estimated 7,000 printers on the Columbus campus. UniPrint will be using soy-based toner in any printer it maintains for which cartridges are available, currently totaling about 700. Those printers print about 800,000 pages peOhio State University kicked off a new “Soy Toner Alliance” to celebrate its use of soy-based toner in many of the university’s laser printers. The effort has been spearheaded by the university’s printing facility, UniPrint, which maintains about half of the estimated 7,000 printers on the Columbus campus. UniPrint will be using soy-based toner in any printer it maintains for which cartridges are available, currently totaling about 700. Those printers print about 800,000 pages per month. “It is not simply about using a new product,” said E.

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Sustainability research results shows progress in the U.S.

New research shows nearly 70% of U.S. consumers consider sustainability when choosing food products at the grocery store. What’s more, 78% of consumers consider the sustainability of farm-produced ingredients when buying products on the supermarket shelf.

To measure U.S. consumers’ perceptions of sustainable farming, the United Soybean Board (USB) fielded an independent quantitative study in early 2010. When American consumers think about sustainable farming, they most often refer to a way of raising food that is healthy for consumers and animals, does not harm the environment, is humane for workers, provides a fair wage to the farmer and supports and enhances rural communities. They highly rate the nation’s soybean crop, which produces soyfoods like tofu as well as soybean oil for fried foods, baked goods, salad dressing and cooking oil (where it’s often labeled “vegetable oil”).

In the USB study, 72% of consumer participants agree U.S. soybean farming is sustainable. Asked what country leads in sustainable farming, respondents rate the U.S.

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Properly Harvesting and Testing Scabby Wheat Important to Minimize Vomitoxins

 

With wheat harvest now under way in Ohio, sampling and testing for vomitoxin in head scab-infected wheat is vital to prevent further losses and avoid potential health problems in humans and livestock.

Pierce Paul, an Ohio State University Extension plant pathologist and small grains specialist, said that grain elevators will likely be testing every lot to ensure that any vomitoxin in infected grain stays below the acceptable limit of 2 parts per million.

“It’s important that the testing be conducted correctly to avoid overestimating or underestimating vomitoxin in the grain,” Paul said.

Wheat in some portions of Ohio is experiencing upwards of 60 percent incidence of head scab — a disease that attacks the wheat during flowering under wet, humid conditions. The disease can impact yields. In addition, the fungal pathogen that causes head scab produces several mycotoxins, including vomitoxin, that affect grain quality. Feeding infected grain to livestock can be harmful, and using infected grain for bran, flour and germ can be unhealthy for human consumption.

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Soybean Growers: Keep an Eye Out for White Mold

Ohio soybean growers may not have to worry about soybean rust, but they should be keeping their eyes out for potential white mold developments.

“The weather conditions over the past few weeks are very similar to last year. If it stays cool and wet, then white mold will be the next issue to monitor,” said Anne Dorrance, an Ohio State University Extension plant pathologist with the Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center.

Last year, rainy weather and cooler-than-normal summer temperatures resulted in the first major white mold outbreak in Ohio in nearly a decade.

White mold, also known as Sclerotinia stem rot, is a common fungal disease that spreads by infecting old, decaying soybean stem tissue or blossoms prior to flowering (R1 stage) and during flowering (R2 stage). The fungus invades the plant by producing a compound called oxalic acid, which kills plant tissue and allows the fungus to take hold.

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June 21 Crop Progress Statistics are Out

Released June 21, 2010, by the National Agricultural Statistics Service
(NASS), Agricultural Statistics Board, United States Department of
Agriculture (USDA).

Special Note

NASS is in the process of modifying report layouts in order to improve
readability. This issue is produced using the new layout. This report will be
published weekly using both layouts through June 28, 2010. Beginning July 6,
2010, Crop Progress will only be produced using this layout. The previous
layout is available on the NASS website: http://www.nass.usda.gov.

Corn Condition – Selected States: Week Ending June 20, 2010
[National crop conditions for selected States are weighted based on 2009
planted acreage] —————————————————————————–
      State      : Very poor :   Poor    :   Fair    :   Good    : Excellent
—————————————————————————–
                 :                          percent                         
                 :                                                          
Colorado ……..:     –           2          12          67          19    
Illinois ……..:     3           7          21          52          17    
Indiana ………:     2           8          22          49          19    
Iowa …………:     2           5          18          52          23    
Kansas ……….:     1           3          24          61          11    
Kentucky ……..:     –           5          18          57          20    
Michigan ……..:     1           5          19          51          24    
Minnesota …….:     –           –           7          61          32    
Missouri ……..:     6          14          31          39          10    
Nebraska ……..:     1           3          18          62          16    
North Carolina ..:     3           9          25          53          10    
North Dakota ….:     –           2          10          75          13    
Ohio …………:     2           8          27          49          14    
Pennsylvania ….:     –           3          13          59          25    
South Dakota ….:     2           4          20          59          15    
Tennessee …….:     1           4          21          55          19    
Texas ………..:     2           5          18          56          19    
Wisconsin …….:     –           2          12          63          23    
                 :                                                          
18 States …….:     2           5          18          56          19    
                 :                                                          
Previous week …:     1           4          18          58          19    
Previous year …:     2           5          23          54          16    
—————————————————————————–
– Represents zero.                                                          

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Supreme Court overturns judge in major win for biotech crops

The Supreme Court over-turned a lower federal judge’s ruling that farmers could not plant a biotech alfalfa variety while the U.S. Department of Agriculture prepared a detailed Environmental Impact Assessment on the crop. In a major win for biotech crop breeders, the Supreme Court held by a 7 to 1 majority in Monsanto Co. v. Geertson Seed Farms that the federal district court judge abused his discretion by refusing to permit any planting at all, despite the USDA’s 2005 approval of the variety.

The news was welcomed by a coalition of agricultural organizations who had filed a joint friend-of-the-court brief to the Supreme Court in support of the petitioners in the case. The brief was submitted by the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF), Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO), American Seed Trade Association, American Soybean Association (ASA), National Alfalfa and Forage Alliance (NAFA), National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG), National Cotton Council and National Potato Council.

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