Uniting the ag community

CEW-MR-1-Uniting the 1 copyby Sally Colby
Trent Loos talks about ag with just about everyone he encounters, and wants every farmer and rancher to do the same. “What we’re talking about is getting everyone in the food business, from food producer to food consumer, in the right frame of mind,” he said. “Not to be defensive and reactionary, but to seek opportunities and to be good listeners.”
Loos is a sixth-generation United States farmer with a strong passion for ag. After realizing that celebrities and vegan zealots had more voice and influence than real farmers and ranchers, Loos began to speak on behalf of those who dedicate their lives to producing food. [Read more…]

In southside Virginia, Blue Ridge Aquaculture gears for growth

CM-MR-3-In southside Virginia 1by Karl H. Kazaks
RIDGEWAY, VA — Blue Ridge Aquaculture (BRA) is already the world’s largest sustainable indoor fishery — yet it’s poised to get even bigger.
BRA is looking to add a facility somewhere in the western U.S. to reach markets in that part of the country in addition to the eastern markets it already serves. What’s more, the company is more than five years into a research program to develop commercial indoor shrimp production, which would give it an extra product to sell along with the live tilapia it currently produces.

[Read more…]

All Breed Beef Cattle Clinic at Stonewall Farms huge success

CEW-MR-2-All beef breed 622by Judy Van Put
Stonewall Farms, located on Callicoon Center Road, Jeffersonville, NY, was the place to be recently for all who have an interest in Beef Cattle. Host Eddie Moran worked tirelessly in preparation of the event, which drew Beef Cattle enthusiasts from near and far, along with his wife, Barbara, who was pleased with the almost-300 that came to their farm for the clinic. [Read more…]

Corn Growers Pleased to See House Ag Committee Progress on Farm Bill

WASHINGTON (May 16, 2013) – National Corn Growers Association President Pam Johnson released the following statement in response to the House Committee on Agriculture’s farm bill passage late Wednesday night:

“We greatly appreciate the work by House Committee on Agriculture’s Chairman Frank Lucas, Ranking Member Collin Peterson and the Committee to move forward in the process to develop a five-year farm bill. NCGA is assessing similarities and differences between the legislation and our grower-developed policy.

“While we are pleased the process is moving forward, NCGA remains extremely concerned with the Committee’s decision to adopt a fixed-target-price program that moves U.S. farm policy away from the market-oriented reforms that have made possible a robust rural economy. It is also disappointing the Committee failed to use this opportunity to ensure a Revenue Loss Coverage program that is a genuine risk management option for producers.

“We understand this is only the second step in a long process, and we do applaud the House Ag Committee for holding a markup. Now, we call upon Speaker John Boehner to quickly take up the bill in the full House. We look forward to our continued work with members and staff on this important piece of legislation and urge Congress to pass a farm bill this year.”

House Agriculture Committee Passes Farm Bill, ASA Calls on Full House to Bring Bill to the Floor

ST. LOUIS (May 15, 2013) – The American Soybean Association (ASA) applauds Chairman Frank Lucas, Ranking Member Collin Peterson and the members of the House Agriculture Committee for passing the Federal Agriculture Reform and Risk Management Act earlier today. The bill, which passed the Committee on a 36 to 10 vote, will now head to the House floor for consideration. ASA President Danny Murphy, a soybean farmer from Canton, Miss., commended the Committee and called on the full House to pass the bill as quickly as possible.

“ASA is very pleased that the farm bill is moving forward, and we applaud Chairman Lucas and Ranking Member Peterson, as well as the entire Committee, for their work on the bill,” said Murphy. “The House bill contains several key ASA priorities including provisions to strengthen crop insurance and continue our overseas marketing programs. We remain concerned with the bill’s inclusion of a price-based program under which payments are tied to current plantings, and the potential planting distortions this program could cause if market prices fall. That said, we believe these differences can be ironed out, either on the House floor or in conference with the Senate.”

Murphy noted that ASA was particularly pleased that Rep. Bob Gibbs (R-Ohio) offered and spoke to an amendment that would have decoupled payments under the Price Loss Coverage (PLC) program from current-year plantings in order to avoid production distortions. Rep. Gibbs made clear in his remarks that the PLC program, as included in the draft Committee bill, could distort plantings during periods of low prices, and he argued that all crops should be supported at a consistent level, based on market prices. In withdrawing his amendment, Rep. Gibbs made clear his intention to raise these issues again when the bill moves to the House floor.

“We appreciate Rep. Gibbs’ efforts to highlight the potential distortions that could result from a program based on target prices that are coupled to current-year plantings. The avoidance of such distortions has been a core ASA priority from the beginning, and we commend the Congressman for bringing up this concern during Committee markup.”

Rep. Gibbs was successful in including a second amendment that would require the Secretary of Agriculture to report annually on the impact of the PLC and Revenue Loss Coverage (RLC) programs on the planting, production, price, and export of commodities, as well as on the cost of these programs. ASA supported this provision as a means for monitoring Title 1 programs, particularly if payments based on high support levels are tied to current-year production, which could distort planting decisions.