The season-long drought and extreme heat have created conditions prime for Aspergillus ear rot to develop in corn, so growers should scout their fields and inspect their grain, says Purdue Extension plant pathologist Kiersten Wise....More
The drought of 2012 seems to be impacting every facet of livestock production from feed needs to manure application concerns. Several new resources are available to help producers and nutrient applicators take the right steps while applying manure this fall....More
The Agriculture Department’s monthly crop report lowered the 2012 production forecasts for corn and soybeans. American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) economists say the report was “bearish” for corn prices in one respect, because the estimate for ending stocks was not reduced as much as expected by some market analysts....More
Since 1988, there have been 4-5 major downturns in the swine industry, each time challenging producers to find ways to decrease feed costs and boost feed efficiency, says Bob Thaler, South Dakota State University Extension swine
Limiting animal agriculture is not a healthy, sustainable way to save water, according to a statement released today by the American Society of Animal Science (ASAS) Board of Directors.
A recent paper by the Stockholm International Water Institute (SIWI) recommends that the world population could save water by cutting consumption of animal products by 75%. This recommendation is based on flawed data, says the ASAS....More
Americans can expect to pay more for groceries due to high commodity prices driven by this year’s drought. But food prices likely won’t hit their peak for a few months, says Iowa State University (ISU) grain market and agricultural experts this week....More
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack made a series of announcements this week about steps being taken to help farmers, ranchers and businesses impacted by the most severe drought in 50 years. The Secretary said the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) will modify emergency loans, allowing loans to be made earlier in the season helping livestock producers to offset increased feed costs and those who have liquidated herds....More
National Hog Farmer’s sister publication, Corn & Soybean Digest, reports that as of this week, with almost one-fifth of the corn crop reaching maturity, and over half of the overall crop denting, the corn harvest has started. As of Aug. 20, 4% of the 2012 corn crop has been harvested. Four percent of the soybean crop is dropping leaves, and overall soybean condition gained a point in the good-to-excellent rating category....More
Economic trends and concerns over the condition of grain because of the drought suggest there's little incentive for farmers to store grain this fall. But those who do will need to quickly dry it down to a proper moisture content and watch for contamination, Purdue University specialists say....More
In response to the current drought situation facing Iowa pork producers, Iowa State University (ISU) Extension and Outreach swine program specialists will host a webinar on Wed. Aug. 29 from 1 p.m. to 3:30 p.m. at various locations....More
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said the severity of the U.S. drought may be peaking, but the impact on corn and soybean crops may not be known until harvest, according to a report from Bloomberg News.
Steadying weather conditions may ease pressure to relax federal requirements for the use of corn to make ethanol, he added in an interview at the Iowa State Fair.
“The overall impact of the drought is beginning to decline,” Vilsack said. Uneven dryness from farm to farm make crop predictions difficult this year....More
Crops grown in stressful conditions, like this year's drought, are more susceptible to mold growth, and consequentially, mycotoxins. Hog producers need to take extra precautions when feeding corn that may be mycotoxin-infected, says Bob Thaler, South Dakota State University Extension Swine Specialist....More
In the midst of what may turn out to be the nation’s worst drought in about 70 years, a diverse coalition of livestock and poultry organizations is petitioning the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to waive the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS) for the rest of 2012 and for an appropriate portion of 2013....More
“The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) is grateful for USDA’s $100 million supplemental pork purchase, which will be used for various federal food assistance programs,” says NPPC President R.C. Hunt, a North Carolina pork producer.
“This purchase will help pork producers who are struggling with the effects of this severe drought, which has adversely affected much of the nation’s corn crop....More
As part of the Obama Administration's commitment to do everything it can to help farmers, ranchers, small businesses, and communities being impacted by the nation's persistent drought, Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced USDA's intent to purchase up to $170 million of pork, lamb, chicken, and catfish for federal food nutrition assistance programs, including food banks....More
Some of the key safety nets that benefit crop farmers dealing with this year’s scorching drought won’t help livestock producers who have been saddled with high feed costs and growing uncertainty, according to two agricultural experts at Iowa State University, says Chad Hart, an Iowa State University Extension and Outreach grain markets specialist and associate professor of economics....More
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved a program in Wisconsin designed to reduce phosphorus levels in the Great Lakes and Wisconsin's inland waters, according to a news release on the Wisconsin EPA Region 5 Web site....More
The North American Manure Expo will be held at the USDA Dairy Forage Research Center near Prairie du Sac, WI, on Wed., Aug. 22. The Expo is focused around the theme, “Professional Manure Management,” and will include commercial field demonstrations, hands-on product and education opportunities and commercial vendor displays. There is no cost to attend the Expo. Learn more at http://www.manureexpo.org/....More
The Iowa Manure Management Action Group (IMMAG) reports that the Iowa Beef Center is currently funding a demonstration project to look at the cost-effectiveness of using pumps to manage effluent from settling basins at small feedlots which qualify under the permitted size of 1,000 beef animals. Iowa law requires all feedlots, regardless of size, to settle the manure solids coming off a feedlot. Once the solids are settled, the effluent can be released as long as it does not cause a water quality violation. One effective solution is to use small pumps to divert the effluent runoff water from drainage pathways and distribute it on crop fields where growing crops can utilize the water and the nutrients. The demonstration project will include several field days at feedlots where beef producers can learn about these systems, as well as the development of a fact sheet and a video....More
A task force of authors made up of university faculty members and private industry professionals collaborated to produce a new Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) issue paper that addresses specific water and land concerns related to animal agriculture. The paper covers beef, dairy, pork and poultry production and focuses on policy transitions and environmental management programs. Scientific data is presented for North America, with a primary focus on the United States, and also compares data from other parts of the world....More
The Iowa Manure Management Action Group (IMMAG) says crops may be harvested early in some parts of Iowa due to dry conditions. IMMAG is telling producers and manure applicators to make some time now to organize activities related to manure application that may also happen earlier than normal due to dry conditions....More
The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) offers general reminders to the state’s producers regarding manure storage and land application during the drought of 2012. The DNR says cracks in the soil can provide a near-direct line for manure to reach a stream. The same weather conditions can also cause problems in earthen basins used to store manure....More
The drought plaguing much of the United States impacts nutrient management decisions in a variety of ways. Purdue University agronomists say dry soils have resulted in a high incidence of potassium deficiency symptoms in both corn and soybeans in Indiana. Dry soil reduces potassium uptake by slowing the movement of potassium from the soil solution to the plant root. Thus, according to Purdue agronomists Jim Camberato and Brad Joern, potassium deficiency will occur in a dry year at higher soil test levels than will occur in a wet year....More