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  • The American Farm Bureau Federation has appointed new members to its national Young Farmers & Ranchers Committee for the 2015-2017 term beginning in March.
  • Case IH recently garnered six industry awards, a testament to its commitment to innovation and deep understanding of producers’ needs.
  • Mitas is planning to test the first agriculture tire made from agricultural cultivated crops.
  • Cargill executives expressed support for the White House’s plan to normalize relations between the United States and Cuba.
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Jon Doggett Named NCGA Executive Vice President

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

ncga-doggett-headThe National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today announced the promotion of Jon Doggett to Executive Vice President, effective January 1.

Doggett has served as Vice President of Public Policy since July 2002, where he directs all aspects of NCGA efforts involving the federal government. He was also named one of Washington’s Most Influential Lobbyists by The Hill newspaper. In his new role, Doggett will lead efforts to expand NCGA’s alliances and strategic partnerships, and elevate its national profile. He will continue to manage the organization’s 10-person Washington, DC office and lead its public policy efforts.

Raised on his family’s ranch in Montana, Jon has substantial knowledge of production agriculture and more than 25 years of agricultural policy experience. Prior to joining NCGA, Doggett spent eleven years at the American Farm Bureau Federation, where he was the Bureau’s lead lobbyist on a number of public policy issues, including federal lands, climate change, land use, energy, and endangered species.

Corn, NCGA

Deere to Sell Crop Insurance Business to FMH

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

johndeerelogoDeere & Company has announced an agreement to sell its crop insurance business, subject to regulatory approval, to Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Company (FMH) of West Des Moines, Iowa.

The action is a result of Deere’s previously announced review of strategic options for the crop insurance business. The agreement will result in Deere selling both John Deere Insurance Company and John Deere Risk Protection, Inc., which together made up the crop insurance business unit of John Deere Financial.

“We are confident that customers of John Deere crop insurance will be well served with this action,” said Don Preusser, president, John Deere Insurance Company and John Deere Risk Protection, Inc. “Farmers Mutual Hail has provided tailored crop insurance packages to farmers for more than 120 years. We believe the success and long tenure of FMH speaks volumes about their dedication to customer service.”

The deal is expected to be closed during the first quarter of 2015.

Insurance, John Deere

New Holland Wins Four Innovation Awards

John Davis Leave a Comment

ae50_LogoOur friends at New Holland are being honored for their engineering innovation. This company news release says New Holland won fourprestigious AE50 Awards for smart engineering innovations by the American Society of Agricultural and Biological Engineers (ASABE).

“We’re proud to receive these awards recognizing industry-leading advances in technology,” says Abe Hughes, New Holland’s Vice President of North America. “In 2015, New Holland will be celebrating our 120th year as an innovator, and these AE50 awards affirm our continued commitment to providing the smart, cutting-edge technology growers need to increase their efficiency and profitability.”

The New Holland award winners include:

QuickMax™ disc cutterbar quick-change knife system
41-foot 760CG Varifeed™ grain header
Integration of LIN remote-control actuators on New Holland CR combines
Triple-Clean™ cleaning shoe technology for CX5000 and CX6000 Elevation combines

You can read more about each of the four winners here.

The AE50 awards are presented for the fifty most innovative product ideas to enter the market in 2014, honoring new product ideas that are ranked highest in innovation, significant engineering advancement, and impact on the market served.

Agribusiness, New Holland

Farm Bureau Names New Promotion Committee

John Davis Leave a Comment

afbf-logoIn an effort to develop and centralize resources that inspire and equip Farm Bureau members to convey the significance of agriculture, the American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) has appointed farmer and rancher members to the organization’s new national Promotion & Education Committee.

AFBF President Bob Stallman announced the appointment of the following members to the committee: Phyllis Couture, West Valley, New York (greenhouses); Melinda Groth, Houston, Minnesota (dairy cattle and crops); Chris Hoffman, McAllisterville, Pennsylvania (hogs and poultry); Hilary Maricle, Albion, Nebraska (beef cattle, hogs and crops); Renee McCauley, Lowell, Michigan (dairy cattle and crops); Teribeth Spargo, Naylor, Missouri (crops); and Val Wagner, Monango, North Dakota (crops and beef cattle).

Hoffman was appointed to a two-year term as chair of the committee; Wagner was appointed to a two-year term as vice chair.

“People today are more interested than ever in where their food comes from,” Stallman said. “The members of the national Promotion & Education Committee will fill an important role in bridging the gap between farmers and consumers by providing tools and resources to other Farm Bureau members who are eager to help share agriculture’s story.”

The national committee members are nominated by their respective state Farm Bureaus and will support and encourage state Farm Bureau volunteers to participate in projects and activities by providing resources for programs, communicating with state leaders and contributing collaborative ideas.

AFBF, Ag Group

Bayer Encourages Comments on Neonic Benefits

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

asta-css-14-beckyFarmers and other stakeholders have only a few days left to comment on the EPA report about the “Benefits of Neonicotinoid Seed Treatments to Soybean Production” which finds little or no overall benefits. The comment period concludes on December 22.

Dr. Becky Langer, Bayer CropScience Bee Care Program manager, says they developed a platform for people to comment on the report called AgVoice4Choice.com. “Where stakeholders can go and submit a letter based on their zip code, they can choose whether they’re a grower, applicator or concerned citizen, and let their concerns be voiced.”

Langer says the EPA document came out of the presidential memorandum this year to develop a national pollinator strategy. “I believe they are using the information to see what kind of response they get,” she said. “Soybean we don’t see as much yield increase as we do with some of the other crops, so perhaps that’s why they chose it to see how much interest there is.”

Becky explains more in this interview: Interview with Becky Langer, Bayer CropScience

2014 ASTA CSS & Seed Expo photo album

ASTA, Audio, Bayer, Insecticides, pollinators

Nufarm U.S. Promotes Schwehr

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

nufarmNufarm announced that Rob Schwehr has been promoted to the position of Vice President of Innovation & Regulatory Affairs for Nufarm Americas. In this position, Schwehr will oversee product development and interactions with governmental agencies which regulate Nufarm products. In addition, he will oversee the Technical Service Group within Nufarm Americas. He will continue to be located in the company’s Morrisville, North Carolina office.

“Rob has been an integral part of our team and our success since he joined Nufarm in 2008,” said Darryl Matthews, general manager for Nufarm in North America. “With his extensive experience in the crop protection industry, he will continue to help us find new and better ways to bring innovative crop protection solutions to market, as we pursue our mission to ‘Grow a Better Tomorrow.’”

Schwehr started as a product manager with Nufarm in 2008. He then moved to Colombia and served as the general manager for Nufarm’s operations in that country. He returned to the U.S. as the tree, nut, vine and vegetable (TNVV) marketing manager in 2013. He took on the additional role of leading the Core Chemistry team at Nufarm earlier this year.

Prior to Prior to joining Nufarm, Rob worked for 25 years with Bayer CropScience and its legacy companies in technical and marketing positions, including serving as product manager for imidacloprid and thiacloprid products. He has a master’s degree from the University of Georgia.

Agribusiness, Company Announcement

2015 Interest Rates for Rural America

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

15821157975_fcca025115_zBrian O’Keane, Executive Vice President of AgriBank, spoke with our intern, Taylor Truckey, during Trade Talk at the 2014 National Association of Farm Broadcasting’s annual meeting. AgriBank is one of four banks in the Farm Credit system. Their main priority is accessing capital from Wall Street and making that available for borrowers in rural America.

“If you look at the last few years borrowers in ag have been beneficiaries of a high commodity prices and historically low interest rate environments. That has created opportunities for those customers to manage and instill some discipline in their operation.”

Looking into 2015, Brian said interest rates will likely start rising due to the fact they are so low now. But, by how much? Brian and his colleagues expect about half a percent within the next year, over one percent in two years and two or more in three years.

In Taylor’s complete interview with Brian, he discusses products and services they offer to help their clients manage risk in this ever-changing environment. Interview with Brian O’Keane, AgriBank

Find photos from the event here:
2014 NAFB Convention Photos

Agribusiness, Audio, Farm Credit, Financial, NAFB

How BASF Flo-Rite Helps Increase Yields

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

asta-css-14-basf-justinKeeping seed treatment on the seed to retain the active ingredient at maximum capacity is one of the main benefits of BASF’s Flo Rite Plantability Seed Coating and that benefits growers at harvest time.

“Our Flo Rite plantability polymer acts as a thin film coating that locks that seed treatment on the seed and keeps it there where a grower can realize the maximum benefit,” said BASF Technical Market Specialist Justin Clark. Think of it as kind of like the candy coating on M&Ms.

Clark says the polymers are very unique in the benefits they provide, in terms of flowability, better and more accurate seed placement, and reduction of skips and doubles in the planting process for corn, soybeans, cotton and wheat. Interview with Justin Clark, BASF

At the ASTA CSS 2014 and Seed Expo, Justin had a demonstration showing the flowability properties of Flo Rite and how it helps with yields in the long run. Watch the video to see for yourself.

2014 ASTA CSS & Seed Expo photo album

Coverage of CSS 2014 and Seed Expo brought to you by
Coverage of CSS 2014 and Seed Expo brought to you by the American Seed Trade Association and Coverage of CSS 2014 and Seed Expo brought to you by BASF Ag Products
ASTA, Audio, BASF, Seed, Video

NFU Disagrees with RFS Report Recommendations

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

NFUlogoThe National Farmers Union (NFU) represented agriculture on a Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) advisory group that helped develop a new report on “Options for Reforming the Renewable Fuel Standard.”

“It was very important that agriculture that supports the renewable fuels industry be present at the table,” said NFU vice president of programs Chandler Goule, who notes that while the meetings were held in a very professional manner, “they were heavily skewed toward big oil.”

In fact, the 23 member advisory group included seven representatives of the oil industry, who apparently heavily influenced the report recommendations. Goule says NFU has major objections to two of the policy recommendations made in the report. “The flattening of the total renewable fuel mandate at its current level going forward, but continuing to increase the three advanced categories, we have significant concerns about what that would to do ethanol and biodiesel,” he said. “Even more concerning was removing the total renewable fuel mandate and only mandating the three advanced categories. Basically what they are doing is giving in to Big Oil’s conclusion that a blend wall exists, which it does not.”

In this interview, Goule also comments on NFU’s concerns with the spending bill passed by Congress, their pleasure with the tax extenders package, what they are looking forward to in 2015, and the NFU annual meeting in March. Interview with Chandler Goule, NFU

Ag Group, Audio, Biodiesel, Ethanol, NFU