GROWMARK Announces 2019 Essay Contest Theme

Carrie Muehling Leave a Comment

High school FFA members in Illinois, Iowa, Missouri, Ohio and Wisconsin can compete in the 2019 GROWMARK Essay Contest.

The theme for the 26th year of the essay contest is: “What does the future of agriculture look like to you, and what skills will you need to play a part in it?”

GROWMARK and its FS member cooperatives, along with state FFA leaders, sponsor the essay contest each year to help young people develop their writing skills, learn about current issues affecting agriculture, and understand the unique role of cooperatives.

Essays will be submitted online. The deadline for all submissions is midnight Central time on November 9, 2018. Additional program details have been sent to agriculture teachers and are online at

Each state’s winner earns a $500 award and the winner’s FFA chapter receives a $300 award. Four runners-up per state each win $125 awards.

Cooperatives, FFA, GROWMARK

Bayer Outlines Vision for Future of Farming

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Joined by farmers, reporters, influencers and other agricultural stakeholders from around the globe, Bayer outlined its vision for the future of agriculture at the 2018 Future of Farming Dialogue, focusing on its commitment to innovation, sustainability and digital transformation.

In the global company’s first major event since the finalization of its acquisition of Monsanto on August 21st, the Future of Farming Dialogue is discussing ways to make the world’s food system more sustainable for the benefit of farmers, consumers and the planet.

“Farmers are hungry for innovation that will help them grow more with less and help ensure adequate access to safe, nutritious and affordable food now and in the future,” said Liam Condon, a member of the Bayer Board of Management and President of the Crop Science Division, during his presentation at the Future of Farming Dialogue 2018.

“We now have thousands of employees dedicated to research and development around the world with market-leading expertise in breeding, biology, chemistry and data science,” said Bob Reiter, the new Head of Research & Development for the Crop Science Division. “I know their combined creativity, collaborative spirit and passion for discovery will help drive tailored solutions for farmers while also driving our business. Breakthrough innovation always happens at the intersection of various scientific disciplines.”

Listen to remarks from both Condon and Reiter here –Bayer executives Liam Condon and Bob Reiter

Bayer Future of Farming Dialogue 2018 Photo Album

Agribusiness, AgWired Precision, Audio, Bayer, Sustainability

#Harvest18 Reminders from ASTA

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

As #Harvest18 gets into full swing, the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) reminds farmers about the importance of taking precautions to keep any treated seed from entering the grain supply.

“Seed treatments provide farmers with an economical means of protecting seeds and seedlings against early-season insect pests and diseases—resulting in stronger and more uniform stands, healthier plants and higher crop yields,” said ASTA President & CEO Andrew LaVigne. “Farmers and applicators know the importance of proper management to minimize the risk of pesticide exposure to humans and the environment. This includes removing all treated seed left in containers and equipment used to handle harvested grain, and disposing of it properly.”

ASTA and other stakeholder groups have developed resources to assist those involved in the process of treating, handling, transporting, or planting treated seeds, which can be found on the Guide to Seed Treatment Stewardship website.

In this interview, LaVigne talks about the importance of taking proper precautions at harvest to avoid any potential grain shipment contamination. Interview with ASTA CEO Andy LaVigne on Harvest18 reminders

AgWired Precision, ASTA, Audio, Harvest, Seed

ILeVO Seed Treatment in BASF Portfolio

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

One of the new products to join the BASF portfolio is ILeVO® seed treatment which offers effective protection against sudden death syndrome (SDS) and soybean cyst nematode (SCN), two of the top pests in soybean production.

On hand at the Farm Progress Show to talk about ILeVO was Jeremiah Mullock, BASF Product Development Manager, so he sat down with Chuck in the portable ZimmComm outdoor studio – otherwise known as a golf cart.

“ILeVO provides yield potential protection from SDS as well as nematodes throughout the growing season,” said Mullock. “SDS is a disease that we can’t always predict the severity of later on in the season, but it’s important to pair that tolerant SDS variety with ILeVO seed treatment, which has that direct efficacy against the disease early on in the season.”

Learn more about ILeVO in this interview with Jeremiah – FPS18 BASF interview with Jeremiah Mullock, ILeVO seed treatment

BASF at the 2018 Farm Progress Show

AgWired Precision, Audio, BASF, Farm Progress Show, Seed

Plant Biotech Pioneer Retires from Syngenta

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Syngenta recently celebrated the remarkable career of Mary-Dell Chilton during a recognition event on her retirement at age 79 after a 35-year career with the company.

Chilton is widely recognized as a founder of modern plant biotechnology, after she and her research teams demonstrated that Agrobacterium is an effective vehicle for DNA transfer and produced the first transgenic plant. Her ground-breaking work in academia and the private sector ultimately led to the development and commercialization of biotech crops, which help farmers effectively manage damaging insects, disease complexes, weed pressure and abiotic stress — resulting in greater yields, profitability and efficiency.

Chilton’s significant contributions to agriculture have resulted in numerous accolades, including the prestigious World Food Prize in 2013 recognizing individuals who have “increased the quality, quantity or availability of food in the world.” She was honored at the same time as Dr. Robert Fraley of Monsanto, who also recently retired as the company was being acquired by Bayer.

We first interviewed Chilton in 2006 during a Syngenta media day and she said at the time she was already way past retirement but still excited about going to work every day. Listen to that here: 2006 Interview with Mary-Dell Chilton, Syngenta

Watch the video Syngenta produced to honor Chilton’s achievements below:

Biotech, GMO, Syngenta, Video

BASF Celebrates Cotton with Texas Tech

Chuck Zimmerman Leave a Comment

The annual Celebrate Cotton Texas Tech football game provided the perfect opportunity for BASF to show off its branded BASF Seed Innovation Center.

Attendees were provided with tours that included both the Trait Development Building and the BASF Crop Analytics laboratory. After the tours media were able to meet with BASF leadership for one on one interviews. Then it was on to the game which was preceded by a FiberMax Tailgate.

Here are my interviews from the event.

Monty Christian, Head of Global Cotton, BASF – Interview with Monty Christian, BASF

Margaret Shields, US Cotton Breeding Manager, BASF – Interview with Margaret Shields, BASF

Malin Westfall, US Cotton Lead, BASF – Interview with Malin Westfall, BASF

Prior to the game start BASF received on-field and scoreboard recognition as sponsors. You can watch the video here:

Of course I’ve got lots of photos for your viewing/sharing pleasure: BASF Celebrate Cotton 2018 Photo Album

Agribusiness, Audio, BASF, Cotton, Video

AMVAC’s Roots Run Deep

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Visitors to the Farm Progress Show were able to see how AMVAC Chemical products like AZTEC and INDEX help improve corn root systems.

AMVAC Crop Marketing Manager for Corn and Soy Jim Lappin explained results of trials on how different products perform on various corn trait hybrids and seed treatments. “Our products, added to your trait packages, can give you bigger root mass and ultimately higher yields,” said Lappin. “Our ten year average is close to 10 bushel per acre advantage.”

Listen here or watch the video below as Lappin walks us through their corn root trial display. FPS18 Jim Lappin discusses AMVAC offerings


Click here to find more photos, videos and audio from AMVAC at the 2018 Farm Progress Show

AgWired Precision, AMVAC, Audio, Corn, Crop Protection, Farm Progress Show

Bayer Fluency Agency Advanced for Sustainability

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Bayer Fluency Agent Advanced, which was introduced in 2017, helped more farmers plant more sustainably this year than ever before.

Bayer developed Fluency Agent Advanced to replace standard seed lubricants made of talc, graphite or a talc-graphite blend for corn and soybean seeds. In addition to improving planter performance, Fluency Agent Advanced helps reduce the amount of total dust released in treated seed dust during planting, reducing the potential risk of exposure to foraging honey bees and other pollinators if they come in direct contact with the dust.

“The whole idea is stewardship – to make sure we keep the active ingredient where it needs to be,” said Bill Striegel, Bayer Seed Growth Product Development Manager, during a Farm Progress Show interview. “Besides the dust-reducing benefit, it provides easier clean-up, good simulation so we’re not seeing skips and doubles.”

Find out more in this interview – FPS18 Bayer interview with Bill Striegel, Fluency Agent Advanced

Bayer at the 2018 Farm Progress Show Photo Album

Content Creation at the Farm Progress Show brought to you by Farm Progress Show content creation courtesy of John DeereCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by GrowmarkCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by Bayer CropScience
AgWired Precision, Audio, Bayer, Farm Progress Show, Planting, Seed

Animal Ag Bites 9/17

Carrie Muehling Leave a Comment


  • The National Dairy Council New Product Competition seeks the next innovative dairy product from college students across the United States and Canada. Deadline for submissions is Jan. 14. For more information, visit or contact Rohit Kapoor at NDC (
  • A team of 18 interns will gain first-hand experience and be able to interact with leaders of every segment of the cattle and beef industry at the 2019 Cattle Industry Convention and NCBA Trade Show in New Orleans. Students must be able to work Jan. 27-Feb. 1, 2019. The deadline to apply is Oct. 10, 2018. For more information, contact Grace Webb at
  • The American Feed Industry Association announced Kirk Bowman as its 2018 Liquid Feed Hall of Fame inductee.
  • The American Feed Industry Association has opened registration for its online feed manufacturing course, conducted in partnership with Kansas State University, Oct. 29-Nov. 30.
  • Dairy Farmers of America products and brands recently earned 18 awards at the 2018 World Dairy Expo Championship Dairy Product contest, including a sweep of the Mozzarella category. For the full 2018 Dairy Product Contest results visit,
  • The Cattlemen’s Beef Promotion and Research Board will invest about $40.5 million into programs of beef promotion, research, consumer information, industry information, foreign marketing and producer communications during fiscal 2019, subject to USDA approval.
  • The recent discovery in an Egyptian tomb of a 3,000-year-old cheese contaminated with Brucella melitensis provided historic evidence of a disease still endemic across much of the developing world. It is a challenge that the US $30m Brucellosis Vaccine Prize competition is seeking to address. The competition remains open to new applications from animal health innovators across industry and academia via the competition website Full details and competition rules are also available on the website.
AgWired Animal, Animal Bites, Beef, Dairy

Doggett Named NCGA CEO

Cindy Zimmerman Leave a Comment

Congratulations to Jon Doggett, who has been chosen as the new chief executive officer for the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), the fifth CEO in the organization’s 61-year history.

Doggett has served in the capacity of NCGA interim CEO since August 1st and as NCGA executive vice president since late 2014. Prior to that, he served as vice president of public policy, and has continuously managed the organization’s 11-person Washington, DC office and led its public policy efforts since joining NCGA in July of 2002.

“The Corn Board is thrilled to have Jon Doggett at the helm to lead the charge for Corn Growers and guide the organization forward,” said NCGA President Kevin Skunes. “We have a lot of serious issues impacting America’s corn farmers and rural communities right now. As such, Jon’s experience and leadership in the broader American agricultural industry, as well as the epicenter of national and international policy in Washington D.C., are invaluable to our organization.”

Doggett brings more than 30 years of agricultural policy and leadership experience to the position. Before joining NCGA, Doggett served 11 years at the American Farm Bureau Federation, where he was lead lobbyist on public policy issues, including ethanol, climate change, land use, conservation, and endangered species.

“As the premier association in the U.S. for nearly 40,000 corn farmer members and 49 affiliated state growers’ associations and checkoff organizations, we have a lot of work ahead of us,” notes Doggett. “I am ready now to be front and center in the trenches, side-by-side with our state and national staff, farmer leaders, dues-paying members and checkoff investors, to listen and ensure we are doing everything we can and are driving the same direction to advance our mission. Corn Growers mission is creating and increasing opportunities for corn growers, through enhancing corn demand and promoting our way of life and tools and technologies of growing corn, all in our noble quest and vision to sustainably feed and fuel a growing world.”

Jon attended the University of Montana majoring in journalism and finance. He is a certified Sea Kayak Instructor. Jon and his wife, Nancy, have two adult children and two precious grandchildren.

Doggett was recently on a panel at the American Coalition for Ethanol annual meeting. Listen to an interview from that event where Doggett talks about the trade situation, as well as his thoughts on Acting EPA Administrator Andrew Wheeler and what it will take to please oil refiners so E15 can be approved year round –
Interview with Jon Doggett, NCGA

AgWired Energy, Audio, Corn, NCGA