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eFields Report a must-see for farmers in Ohio

The 2018 eFields Report has been released by the Ohio State University. The 200 page book contains on-farm research data from the last year collected from 95 research locations spread across 25 counties.

“The eFields report is documentation of all of the on-farm research across the state of Ohio being done by extension educators,”said Sam Custer, Darke County Extension Educator.

Ohio Ag Net’s Bart Johnson sat down with Custer to discuss highlights of the report and how you can see it for yourself.

Click here for the online copy.

There are reginal eFields meetings coming up around the state:

  • Southwest: February 13, 2019 – 9:00 am | Clinton County Extension Office: 111 South Nelson Ave. #2, Wilmington OH 45177
  • Northwest: February 20, 2019; 9:00 am – Noon | Robert Fulton Ag Center: 8770 OH-108, Wauseon, OH 43567
  • East: February 27, 2019; 4:30 pm – 8:30pm | RG Drage Career Conference Center: 2800 Richville Dr.
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Fudge selected for House Agriculture Subcommittee chair

House Agriculture Committee Chairman Collin Peterson of Minnesota announced the election of the Chairs of the six House Agriculture Subcommittees following the Committee’s Democratic Caucus organizational meeting today in Washington. This included Marcia Fudge of Ohio who will chair the Subcommittee on Nutrition, Oversight and Department Operations.

“I look forward to working with each of these talented Subcommittee Chairs,” said Peterson. “They bring a range of experiences and strengths to their work, and each is focused on how the work of their Subcommittee can further our efforts to bring practical solutions to the people we serve.”

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Countryside accepting 2019 farmers’ market applications

Countryside is accepting applications for its 2019 Farmers’ Market seasons at Howe Meadow and Highland Square through Feb. 27. Applications are also being accepted on a rolling basis for the year-round Countryside Public Market in downtown Akron’s Northside District.

Countryside Public Market will be celebrating their summer kick-off on May 26. Farmers and food producers interested in joining the market for the summer season and participating in this event should apply by May 6. Countryside’s markets serve a three-fold purpose: to provide farmers and food producers with a viable direct-to-consumer sales outlet, to connect consumers with the diversity and quality of locally grown and prepared foods, and to create a space for community interaction and engagement.

Countryside’s markets collectively serve over 80 local farmers, food businesses and artists. Since 2014, total vendor revenue has exceeded $1 million dollars annually. Countryside Farmers’ Market at Howe Meadow (Cuyahoga Valley National Park, 4040 Riverview Rd.

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A farmer panel with Seed Consultants

Ohio Ag Net’s Joel Penhorwood sat down with farmers Charlie Roberts of Pickaway Co., Ron Bywater of Union Co., and Chuck Hann of Madison Co., alongside Seed Consultants’ Director of Agronomic Services Bill McDonald to talk a range of topics hitting agriculture. The group chats on everything from the trend of low potash applications and the ongoing government shutdown to a change in equipment dealer ownership and ruts in fields. Tune in!

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House passes of legislation to revise Federal FFA Charter

Congressman Bob Latta (R-Bowling Green) is applauding the House passage of legislation, the National FFA Organization’s Federal Charter Amendments Act, which would amend the FFA charter and provide more control to FFA leadership. The legislation, H.R. 439, was passed by voice vote this week.

The legislation seeks to provide more flexibility to the FFA Board by reducing the number of board members appointed by the U.S. Department of Education and opens the door to allowing more than six national FFA officers. Under the current configuration, the Department of Education has left seats unfilled on the board for significant periods of time, which can threaten a quorum if there are any other absences.

“The National FFA provides more than 650,000 students with the opportunity to grow, learn, and prepare for the future,” Latta said. “I’ve seen the impact that FFA has had on students in Ohio, and it’s essential that the organization has the structure it needs to support more than 8,500 local FFA chapters across the country.

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Only 1-in-5 consumers think plant-based products should be called milk

With only days to go before the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) comment period on fake milks ends, new consumer research shows Americans widely disapprove of dairy terms being appropriated by fake-milk producers, as well as confusion on the nutritional content of milk versus plant-based imitators, offering further evidence that FDA must enforce long-existing standards of identity on dairy imposters.

The national survey conducted by IPSOS, a global market research and consulting firm, found:

• Only 20% of all consumers said plant-based beverages should be labeled milk, as U.S. dietary guidelines do not recommend imitators as a substitute for dairy milk; even when limited to buyers of plant-based drinks, support for mislabeling rose to only 41%.
• About 50% of consumers mistakenly perceive that the main ingredient of a plant-based beverage is the plant itself; such drinks are mostly flavored water.
• More than one-third of consumers erroneously believe plant-based beverages have the same or more protein than dairy milk.

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Northern Ohio Crops Day

By Allen Gahler, Ohio State University Extension

Northern Ohio Crops Day, held annually on the first Thursday in February at Ole Zim’s Wagon Shed near Gibsonburg, Ohio in Sandusky County is all set for another outstanding program that the progressive grain crop producer will not want to miss.

Thursday, Feb. 7, 2019, the program will begin at 8:30 a.m. with a look at fungicide use in alfalfa led by Jason Hartschuh, Ag Educator in Crawford County. Alan Sundermeier, Ag Educator in Wood County will then provide an update on the status of palmer amaranth and waterhemp in the area along with management strategies. A discussion on temperature inversions and their impact on our spray practices will be led by OSU Extension climatologist Aaron Wilson.

Greg Labarge, OSU Extension agronomic systems specialist will give an update on where we’ve been and what we’ve learned on Lake Erie, phosphorous, and water quality, and Andrew Kleinschmidt from OSU’s Ag Engineering department will present research findings on high speed planters and pinch row mitigation.

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2019 Extension Outlook Meetings to be held across Ohio

Ohio State University Extension is pleased to announce the 2019 Agricultural Outlook Meetings. In 2019 there will be seven locations in Ohio. Each location will have a presentation on Commodity Prices- Today’s YoYo. Additional topics vary by location and include U.S. Trade Policy: Where is it Headed, Examining the 2019 Ohio Farm Economy, Weather Outlook, Dairy Production Economics Update, Beef and Dairy Outlook, Consumer Trends, and Farm Tax Update.

Join the faculty from Ohio State University Extension and Ohio State Department of Agricultural, Environmental, and Developmental Economics as they discuss the issues and trends affecting agriculture in Ohio. Each meeting is being hosted by a county OSU Extension Educator to provide a local personal contact for this meeting. A meal is provided with each meeting and included in the registration price. Questions can be directed to the local host contact.

The outlook meeting are scheduled for the following dates and locations:

Date: Jan.

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Certified Livestock Manager training

By Glen Arnold, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

The 2019 Certified Livestock Manager (CLM) training will be on Wednesday Feb. 6 and Thursday Feb. 7 at the Ohio Department of Agriculture’s (ODA) Reynoldsburg campus.

A Certified Livestock Manager (CLM) certification is required for any of the following:

• For a Major Concentrated Animal Feeding Facility (MCAFF) with 10,000 or more cattle; 7,000 or more mature dairy cattle; 10,000 or more veal calves; 25,000 swine over 55 lbs. or 100,000 swine under 55 lbs.; 550,000 or more turkeys, or 820,000 laying hens with other than a liquid manure system. Other requirements for a CLM are in Section 903.07 of the Oho Revised Code (ORC) and Rule 901:10-1-06 of the Ohio Administrative Code (OAC).

• For a person who is a livestock manure broker that buys, sells or land applies more than 4,500 dry tons per year or 25 million gallons of liquid manure, or its equivalent.

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Time to share the facts about climate and food

By Hannah Thompson-Weeman, vice president of communications at the Animal Agriculture Alliance

A recent report published in the Lancet medical journal claims that people must drastically reduce their meat and dairy consumption to be healthy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions. While the report may make for sensational headlines, it ignores evidence about meat and dairy foods’ positive role in healthy diets and environmental sustainability.

The EAT Forum, the organization behind the report, is a privately funded think tank based in Oslo, Norway, and the Lancet is a UK-based medical journal. Their prescriptive global diet severely limits meat and dairy consumption, drastically departing from U.S. dietary guidance. Quantity and calorie caps apply to staple foods, including:

  • Beef (or lamb): one-quarter ounce per day (7g)
  • Pork: one-quarter ounce per day (7g)
  • Dairy: 250 grams per day — about one glass of milk
  • Chicken: one ounce per day (29g)
  • Eggs: less than half an ounce per day — about 1/5 of an egg
  • Fish: about one ounce per day – limited to 40 calories

The EAT-Lancet Commission comprises a small group of researchers and does not represent a global consensus of scientific experts in animal agriculture, nutrition or sustainability.

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New chair to lead plant pathology at Ohio State

The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES) has appointed a professor with additional experience leading a local government as the new chair of the Department of Plant Pathology.

Along with an extensive academic career, Tom Mitchell, a professor of fungal biology and molecular genetics in the department, led and served on the board of trustees of Liberty Township in Delaware County, north of Ohio State’s Columbus campus.

In that role, Mitchell served a population of nearly 20,000 residents, managed a budget of over $11 million, oversaw 72 employees, and led negotiations on union contracts.

“The experiences I had as a township trustee are far different than any I would normally encounter as an academic,” Mitchell said. “They taught me valuable leadership lessons that I continually apply on campus.”

Born and raised in Detroit, Mitchell received a bachelor’s degree in plant science from Pennsylvania State University and a master’s degree in plant pathology from Clemson University.

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Porkbelly BBQ wins CIFT Excellence Award

Porkbelly BBQ, manufacturer of four unique, handcrafted, Ohio-made barbecue sauces, was honored with the CIFT Excellence Award.

The award is in recognition of exceptional achievement in the development of the food company and the contribution to the industry and state of Ohio.

“This achievement comes at such an exciting time for Porkbelly BBQ,” said Rory P.J. Earl, co-founder/partners, Porkbelly BBQ. “Due to the assistance from CIFT, we have been able to focus on our business growth and expand our small business. Now, as we enter the final stages of opening our restaurant, we look forward to growing our business further and expanding the reach of our sauces.”

In 2011, Earl co-founded “RoarE Q” (doing business under the name of Porkbelly BBQ) with his wife, Heather, and parents Charles and Patricia Earl. They started producing barbecue sauce at the Northwest Ohio Cooperative Kitchen, managed by CIFT. Their sauces quickly became available in northwest Ohio grocery stores.

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Winter wheat management: What are tillers and how do they contribute to yield?

By Matt Hutcheson, CCA, product manager for Seed Consultants, Inc.

In the coming months as the weather warms, up winter wheat will break dormancy and will begin to green up. After a period of about 2 weeks producers should evaluate their stand in order to make management decisions for their wheat crop. Part of this evaluation includes counting tillers to determine if there is an adequate stand for achieving high yields. According an article in a 2014 C.O.R.N. Newsletter written by Laura Lindsey, Ed Lentz, Pierce Paul, “Yield potential is reduced if tiller numbers fall below 25 per square foot after green up.”

So, what is a tiller? And how should they be counted? Tillers are additional stems that develop off of the main shoot of the plant. Primary tillers form in the axils of the first four or more true leaves of the main stem. Secondary tillers may develop from the base of primary tillers if conditions favor tiller development.

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Winter weather impacts cattle markets

By Derrell Peel, Oklahoma State University Extension

A major winter storm this past week extended in a belt across the middle of the country from Denver east to the mid-Atlantic coast. Heavy snow hit parts of feedlot country across eastern Colorado, Kansas, southeastern Nebraska, southern Iowa and the eastern Corn Belt. Much of Nebraska and the northern Plains along with the Texas panhandle were spared the worst of the snow but rain has created wet, sloppy conditions in many places that will impact cattle performance in feedlots and in the country. Recent weather may delay fed cattle marketing enough to help support fed cattle prices or push prices higher. Whether or not weather impacts are widespread enough to noticeably impact overall market conditions, cattle producers in many areas face significant management headaches due to the weather.

Winter weather often impacts feedlot performance and efficiency. Feedlots typically post the lowest seasonal average daily gains (ADG) for cattle marketed in March to May, which reflects cattle fed over the previous four to six months.

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Extensive spread of corn toxin could affect 2019 crop

A wetter than normal summer and fall in Ohio led to the worst spread of a toxin on corn in at least a decade, according to a grain disease expert with The Ohio State University.

And next year’s crop may be at risk as well. The fungus that produces the toxin can survive the winter, particularly if stalks or other plant material from the 2018 corn crop are left on the surface of the soil, said Pierce Paul, an Ohio State University Extension specialist in corn and small grain diseases.

The extent of vomitoxin across Ohio and the rest of the Corn Belt led some farmers to receive a lower price for their crop, Paul said.

High moisture levels spur the spread of vomitoxin, which can cause people and animals to get sick. The rainy summer and fall in the state and across the Midwest not only left more moisture in fields, but also delayed some farmers from harvesting.

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Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 89 | Eskimo gloves

The 89th Ohio Ag Net Podcast, brought to you by AgriGold, joins host Dale Minyo alongside Bart Johnson, Matt Reese, and Joel Penhorwood as they talk the cold weather and more.

Interviews in this week’s piece includes a chat with Ohio Director of Agriculture Dorothy Pelanda, Jed Stinner of USDA’s Agricultural Research Service, and Annie Specht who recently competed in the American Farm Bureau Discussion Meet.

Other topics include the government shutdown and more. Tune in!

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Weak farm economy not hampering efforts healthier soils

The Soil Health Summit 2019 with Soil Health Partnership was the largest ever—360 registered attendees made their way to St. Louis to learn and network. A diverse group including farmers, corporations, educators and environmental groups spent two days talking about soil health. The summit provided many takeaway messages and insights of interest. Here are just a few:


  • Enthusiasm for learning new sustainability practices and adopting new farm management tools to protect and improve soil is not being slowed by a prolonged downturn in the farm economy. Many farmers, landlords, and others are investing in the long game to assure more sustainable and profitable agriculture.


  • SHP outreach is building a diverse coalition of partners from farms all the way to consumers. The program and the network being created is growing rapidly.


  • The common interest of proving the latest farming techniques, building healthier soils, cleaner water while maintaining farmer profitability is getting positive attention outside of agriculture, including with elected officials.
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New conservation practice could reduce nitrogen pollution in the Gulf of Mexico

Every summer, a “dead zone” forms in the Gulf of Mexico. Plumes of oxygen-robbing algae, fed by excess nitrogen coming in from the Mississippi River, kill off marine life and threaten the livelihoods of those who fish the Gulf. States bordering the Mississippi River are putting strategies in place to limit nitrogen from wastewater treatment plants, surface runoff, and agricultural fields. In a new study, University of Illinois scientists have estimated that a new conservation practice known as saturated buffers could reduce nitrogen from agricultural drainage by 5 to 10%.

“It might not sound like much, given that agricultural drainage only represents a portion of the nitrogen getting into the Mississippi. But 5 to 10% is pretty good for an inexpensive, passive system that farmers can put in and forget about,” said Reid Christianson, research assistant professor in the Department of Crop Sciences at U of I and co-author of the study.

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Shearer Equipment selling assets to Ag-Pro

Another farm equipment dealer in Ohio has sold to Ag-Pro.

Shearer Equipment announced this week they have signed a letter of intent to sell their company’s assets to Ag-Pro Ohio LLC, a subsidiary of Ag-Pro Companies.

Ag-Pro recently made a name in Ohio by buying the assets of JD Equipment in late 2018.

The anticipated transaction date is January 30, 2019, according to a letter posted by Shearer Equipment on social media.

Ag-Pro is based out of Georgia and has over 70 John Deere dealerships in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, Texas, and Ohio.

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