Lorrie Morgan Wants 5 Minutes of Your Time

Chuck Zimmerman

Lorrie MorganWhat part of “You must attend Commodity Classic” don’t you understand?

Commodity Classic, the combined convention and trade show of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and the American Soybean Association (ASA), has announced country star Lorrie Morgan will be the headline act for the Evening of Entertainment at the 2006 Commodity Classic in Anaheim, Calif., March 2-4.

Commodity ClassicThe Evening of Entertainment will be Saturday evening, March 4, at the Anaheim Convention Center Arena. For more information about Commodity Classic, visit www.commodityclassic.com.

Commodity Classic

The Resurrection of The Livestock Round-Up

Chuck Zimmerman

Livestock UpdateThe Livestock Marketing Information Center has resumed publishing a quarterly electronic version of the “Livestock Round-Up. It’s an online PDF file that you can download from a sidebar link on their website.

Would you like to know more about consumer demand for beef, the outlook for cattle and sheep and lamb prices, and the Canadian cattle industry? Those topics are covered in the most recent issue of the quarterly Livestock Round-Up published by the Livestock Marketing Information Center (LMIC).

Some of you “old time” livestock market observers may remember receiving the brown and white monthly Western Livestock Round-Up newsletter in the mail during the ’70s and ’80s. Later, readers across the Western and Great Plains states received the Round-Up as an insert in state agricultural magazines.

The LMIC is a unique cooperative effort that includes 24 state Extension Services (including the NDSU Extension Service), five cooperating USDA agencies and seven associate livestock-related organizations.

Publication dates are March, June, September and December. Articles will focus on livestock markets and related issues. The major species covered in terms of market situation and outlook will be cattle, hogs and sheep. Other species and related industries also will be covered periodically.


Sunbelt Ag Expo Features Over 1,200 Exhibitors

Chuck Zimmerman

Sunbelt Ag ExpoHere’s the latest news from Sunbelt Ag Expo in Moultrie, GA. The reports we’ve had were sent in courtesy of Randall Weisman, Southeast AgNet. Thanks for the news!

The 28th Annual Sunbelt Ag Expo continues here in Moultrie, Georgia with big crowds enjoying everything from stockdog sheep trials, to beef cattle seminars, haymaking sessions, field crop exhibits, to machinery exhibits and machinery demonstrations. Overall, there are 1200 exhibitors on hand showing their goods and products.

As we mentioned Tuesday, the Lancaster/Sunbelt Farmer of the Year award was presented to Louis “Red” Larson of Okeechobee, Florida. But it has also been announced a ninth state has been added to participate in the prestigious program in 2006. Kentucky will join the eight original states of Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia at next years event.

But this years Sunbelt Ag Expo is still underway and runs through Thursday.

Farm Shows

1,207 Posts, 4 Blogs, 6 Months

Chuck Zimmerman

For the first time today I actually forgot about something that I had posted. I mean I was talking to someone today on the phone and saying that what we were talking about would be good material for AgWired and she pointed out that I had written about it 2 months ago! Wow. She was also someone I’ve never met and was talking to for the first time. In fact, I didn’t even get her name. I guess AgWired’s getting out there. But it made me wonder. How many of these posts have I posted? Maybe there’s a reason I’d better search my own blog before posting!

In 6 months I’ve posted 1,207 articles (my word for posts) onto 4 different ZimmComm blogs. Now this doesn’t count two personal blogs I operate or 2 different volunteer blogs I operate like the one for Gateway NAMA.

So here’s how that 1,207 breaks out:

AgWired – 965
World Dairy Diary – 197
DomesticFuel – 39
Talking News Releases – 6

I’ll bet you didn’t know there were that many things to write about in the agricultural marketing world. That’s only 6 months folks. You ain’t seen nothing yet. Why? Because we’re going to have some more writers and contributors to AgWired. I’m working on it. I can’t pay much yet and I’m only interested in someone who knows “ag” and who’s already blogging! But we’ll be introducing you to some pro bloggers here very soon. BTW. Are you interested? If so, please feel free to make your interest known but remember you have to be blogging already.


Vermeer Manufacturing Promotes Cheap Roughage

Chuck Zimmerman

Vermeer ManufacturingWith all the corn harvesting going on Vermeer Manufacturing wants growers to know how important baling the stalks can be as an economical roughage for livestock. To help get the word out they sent a Talking News Release today.

When it comes to a good, affordable source of roughage, many cattle producers and livestock feeders are finding that cornstalk bales really fit the bill. Daniel Rippe (Rip-ee) who has a cow-calf operation in Auburn, Nebraska says he has found that cornstalk bales work better for his operation than hay bales.

“Part of it is that they’re – well, cheap. And I can feed distiller’s products with the corn stalks and end up with a decent ration and still be cheaper than going out and buying some higher quality hay.” Full Release

This is the third in a series of releases that Vermeer has distributed on this subject.

Agribusiness, Audio, Talking News Release

Pasta & Pork Month

Chuck Zimmerman

Spaghetti Pizza PieThis just looks good. Maybe it’s because I’m hungry but I like what I see. You just never know what you’re going to get here on AgWired and right now it’s a recipe because it’s Pasta Month and the North Dakota Wheat Commission wants everyone to know it since if you’re eating pasta it might have got its start there.

You’ll notice that the recipe gives you choices on the meat but since it’s also Pork Month I know which one you’ll choose. At least the folks at the National Porkboard are hoping that’s the case.

Spaghetti Pizza

Makes 8 servings
1/2 pound lean ground turkey, beef, or pork
1 medium clove garlic, peeled and minced
6 ounces uncooked spaghetti
1/2 cup skim milk
1 egg, beaten
2 cups spaghetti sauce
1 cup shredded, part-skim mozzarella cheese
Suggested toppings (as desired): mushrooms, ripe olives, green pepper, zucchini, carrots, broccoli, and/or sliced pepperoni

Preheat oven to 350°F.

Spray a 12-inch pizza pan or 9- x 13-inch pan with cooking spray. Do not choose a pizza pan with holes designed for a crisp crust.

In a small skillet, brown meat with minced garlic; drain. Break spaghetti into 3-inch pieces. Cook according to package directions; drain thoroughly.

In a large bowl, combine milk and egg. Stir in spaghetti. Pour into prepared pan. Top with meat, sauce, cheese, and ¼ cup each of your choice of toppings: drained, sliced mushrooms; drained, sliced ripe olives; finely chopped green pepper. If using zucchini slices, carrots, broccoli, or fresh mushrooms, sauté or cook in microwave until crisp-tender and drain off any liquid. Add 1/2 ounce sliced pepperoni for added variety.

Bake 25 to 30 minutes or until spaghetti crust is firm and cheese melts. Serve immediately.

Note: This recipe can be easily doubled. Bake in a greased 15½- x 10½- x 1-inch jellyroll pan at 350°F for 30 minutes.

Source: Wheat Foods Council

Ag Group

Sunbelt Ag Expo Honors Florida Dairy Farmer

Chuck Zimmerman

Sunbelt Ag ExpoOut here in the midwest we hear a lot about shows like Farm Progress but what about the Southeast? Well this week it’s the Sunbelt Ag Expo. I have many fond memories of covering this show in year’s past. Some that maybe just need to be forgotten too.

Thanks to Randall Weisman, Southeast AgNet, I have a little Sunbelt Ag Expo update to offer you about today’s activities.

Red Larson - Photo courtesy of Sunbelt Ag ExpoThe 28th annual Sunbelt Agricultural Exhibition kicked off Tuesday in Moultrie, Georgia with a variety of announcements being made. The Lancaster/Sunbelt Expo Southeastern farmer of the Year was one of those, as this year’s recipient was Okeechobee, Florida dairy farmer, Louis “Red” Larson. U.S. Ag Secretary Mike Johanns attended the Expo, as held one of his Farm Bill Forums, where he was able to hear from farmers across the region give their thoughts about the 2007 farm bill. But before the forum began, Johanns during a press conference, announced he had appointed Teresa Lasseter as adminstrator of the Farm Service Agency. Johanns also announced the FSA Tomorrow plan has been put on hold for the time being, as more research needs to take place. North America’s Premier Farm Show, the Sunbelt Ag Expo runs through Thursday.

Once upon a time Cindy and I lived and worked in Florida and we got to know the Larsons, especially Red’s son Woody. They are great people and we congratulate Red Larson on his award!

Farm Shows

New MCGA President Outlines Priorities

Chuck Zimmerman

CornTalk podcastCornTalk, a weekly program for the Missouri Corn Growers Association, features an interview with the newly elected president of the organization, Terry Hilgedick. Terry outlines the priorities for the organization this year, including the Missouri Renewable Fuel Standard, which will see significant action in the upcoming legislative session. Terry also talks about the corn harvest, comparing it to last year and as he puts it, “What a difference a year makes.”

You can listen to this week’s CornTalk here: Download MP3 File

CornTalk is a weekly AgWired podcast which you can subscribe to using the link in our sidebar.

Ag Group, Corn, CornTalk, MCGA, Podcasts

Avoid Fuzzy Pumpkins

Chuck Zimmerman

American Phytopathological SocietyOne way to bring attention to your organization is to apply what you do to what people are interested in. For example, the American Phytopathological Society has these tips for picking a healthy pumpkin and also provides some very technical information about what causes, um, unhealthiness.

Visually check for moldy areas or soft spots on the fruit (remember to check the bottom).
Check the stem; healthy stems are green in color. A good stem will support the weight of the fruit.
Most pumpkin varieties are a bright orange when mature. A yellow pumpkin may not be completely mature.
If possible, keep your pumpkin in a dry, shady place and try to prevent it from freezing. This should increase the ‘porch life’ of your pumpkin.
Once pumpkins are carved, the process of decay will become more rapid. To help insure that a Jack-o-Lantern lasts through Halloween, don’t carve it until a few days before the event.

Now for some of the technical stuff.

. . . Another disease that affects pumpkins is Phytophthora blight. This disease is usually found in regions that have experienced heavy rainfall. Pumpkins with Phytophthora blight will have areas of white mold that appears fuzzy. Another disease, bacterial fruit spot, will cause scabby lesions to appear on the fruit.

I for one wouldn’t want white fuzzy spots on my pumpkin if you know what I mean. That’s why we have organizations like this to protect us!!

Ag Group

Spamalot In South Korea

Chuck Zimmerman

Spam ProductsI don’t know if you’ve ever tasted Spam but the United States isn’t the only country that consumes a lot of it. According to a story in the Seattle Times, South Korea is the largest market outside the United States with sales of $136 million. What’s even more interesting is that it’s often bought as a gift.

I can just see it here at my house. I’d come home and say to Cindy, “Hi Dear, I got you a can of Spam.” Actually, that might work the other way around. I like it fried with a couple of eggs and some grits for breakfast!

Just in case you do want to do some Spam shopping they have an online store and you have to get the latest recipes, join the fan club and you can also learn what they think of the use of the word “spam” when it comes to unsolicited junk email. You might also want to check out the website for the upcoming Monty Python movie, “Spamalot.”