Industry Ag News 9/10

Carrie Muehling

  • CHS Inc. announced a major soybean refinery expansion and renovation project at the CHS Mankato, Minn., soybean processing plant, driven by global oil demand. The more than $60 million project is the second phase of CHS investments to capitalize on changing market dynamics and opportunities to grow market access. When upgrades are completed, annual refined soybean oil production at the Mankato facility will increase by more than 35%.
  • With the GROWMARK System’s geographic footprint growing rapidly over the last few years, the organization is excited to announce expanded eligibility for the 2022 GROWMARK FFA Essay Contest to the entire United States. Previously, it had been limited to FFA members in several Midwestern states. The theme for the 2022 GROWMARK Essay Contest is: “What, in your opinion, has changed for the better in the agricultural industry as a result of the pandemic?”
  • The NCGA Corn Board recently confirmed Kelly Harsh of Ohio as its newest director. Kelly grows corn and soybeans on her family operation in Delaware, Ohio.
  • The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol will present six, live enrollment webinars focusing on how the program helps U.S. growers meet the changing demands from their end customer while also better documenting and verifying the sustainability practices and advances already incorporated into their farms.
  • Don’t miss America’s largest seed industry conference, Dec. 6-9 in Chicago! The American Seed Trade Association’s (ASTA) CSS & Seed Expo 2021 will feature an all-new “Villages” concept, showcasing interactive programming in the following key areas: ag tech innovation, operations and logistics, career skills and research/lab facilities, and treated seed. The conference will offer both in-person and virtual attendance options.
  • The American Farm Bureau Federation, along with 46 state Farm Bureaus and 280 organizations representing family-owned agribusinesses, sent a letter to congressional leaders urging them to leave important tax policies in place as they draft legislation implementing President Biden’s “Build Back Better” agenda. The letter addresses four key tax provisions that make it possible for farmers and ranchers to survive and pass their businesses on to the next generation: estate taxes, stepped-up basis, 199A small business deduction and like-kind exchanges.
  • Tennessee Farm Bureau Federation President Jeff Aiken announced he will not seek reelection at the annual meeting in December. Aiken, a third-generation beef cattle, hay, corn and tobacco farmer from Washington County, has served as president for the past six years and is only the 8th president in the organization’s 100-year history.
  • Farms.com is pleased to announce the acquisition of Merston Peters, based in Bury St Edmunds, United Kingdom, to its growing portfolio of Talent Resource solutions.
  • MGEX reports the best fiscal year in its history with a total of 3,380,945 contracts. There was a 28% increase in volume compared to the previous fiscal year, and it was the first time in MGEX history where total exchange volume surpassed three million contracts in a fiscal year.
  • With skyrocketing commodity prices, drought conditions spreading across many parts of the country and export markets booming, there is a lot of concern about U.S. farmers being able to produce anything close to “normal” yields. At the same time, the new Biden Administration is working to retire at least 4 million more acres and put more conservation on 30% of working lands. How will all of these various factors influence the ag economy and agribusinesses? The annual Ag Outlook Forum is a chance to get a comprehensive preview of what lies ahead from leading experts. Presented by the Agricultural Business Council of Kansas City and Agri-Pulse, this “must attend” event brings together USDA’s Chief Economist and other industry experts to share key insights on existing and new market opportunities.
Zimfo Bytes

USDA Invests in Renewable Energy Infrastructure

Cindy Zimmerman

Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Thursday announced that USDA is investing $464 million to build or improve renewable energy infrastructure and to help rural communities, agricultural producers and businesses lower energy costs in 48 states and Puerto Rico.

USDA is financing $129 million of these investments through the Rural Energy for America Program and $335 million through the Electric Loan Program.

Secretary Vilsack was asked about aid for biofuel producers affected by the pandemic last year. “We are in the process of finalizing plans to provide $700 million assistance to the biofuel industry because they didn’t receive benefits under previous COVID packages,” said Vilsack. However, he explained, these things take time and he can’t commit to when it might happen because he is not in control of the whole process. He also commented on the White House goal to achieve 3 billion gallons of SAF production and reduce aviation-related emissions by 20 percent by 2030.

USDA Announces Renewable Energy Investments (14:55)

Audio, Biofuels, Energy, USDA

Enogen Corn Could Increase Beef Producer Sustainability

Cindy Zimmerman

A five percent increase in feed efficiency can not only help livestock producers save some money, it can also help increase their sustainability.

Syngenta Seeds has found through research around the country that using Enogen corn for feed delivers an average 5% increase in feed efficiency, according to Chris Cook, Head, Enogen at Syngenta Seeds. “Potential feed efficiency gains of around 5% are highly significant for beef and dairy producers when you consider there are nearly 100 million cattle in the U.S. alone. It helps maximize potential in their farm operations while also helping to deliver environmental benefits through reduction of greenhouse gas emissions and improvements in land, energy and water use efficiency.”

During an interview at last month’s Cattle Industry Convention, Cook said they started working with the University of Nebraska and Kansas State University where they first identified the five percent efficiency gains. Based on those studies, the University of Arkansas Resiliency Center (UARC) developed a life cycle assessment highlighting the potential for beef producers to reduce their environmental footprint by using Enogen® corn for feed.

The research found potential environmental benefits per 1,000 head of cattle include savings equivalent to removing 35 passenger cars from the road for one year and powering 22 homes for one year. “You might say, well, big deal,” said Cook. “On a 100 million cattle, that’s 3.5 million cars, that’s 2.2 million homes of electricity.”

Syngenta believes Enogen corn for feed technology could represent a significant opportunity for the agricultural industry to reduce its overall impact on the environment, which supports Syngenta Group’s $2 billion global commitment to reduce agriculture’s carbon footprint and help farmers fight climate change.

CIC21 interview with Chris Cook, Syngenta Enogen (8:55)

AgWired Animal, Animal Agriculture, Audio, Beef, Cattle Industry Conference, Corn, Dairy, Feed, Livestock, Syngenta

Precision Ag News 9/8

Carrie Muehling

  • Valley® Irrigation has announced the expansion of their solar solutions into the United States.
  • In response to an announcement from the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) that it will offer Post Application Coverage Endorsement (PACE) in certain states for non-irrigated corn, National Corn Growers Association released the following statement: “PACE will play an extremely important role in helping farmers navigate changing weather conditions. We applaud the Illinois Corn Growers Association and our other partners for working to develop this new insurance product and are appreciative of the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation for seeing its value and approving its use. We look forward to working with USDA as it rolls out this new product.”
  • Tropic Biosciences has joined the leadership team of The Center for Food Integrity (CFI) Coalition for Responsible Gene Editing in Agriculture, a group of leaders in food, agriculture and science collaborating around the vision of global acceptance and support for the responsible use of gene editing technology in agriculture and food.
  • Conference registration is now open for American Seed Trade Association‘s CSS & Seed Expo 2021, December 6-9 in Chicago! This year will feature an all-new “villages” design which will enable attendees to roam throughout the venue to areas where sessions and exhibitors match in content, with networking areas and a “Food Truck” small plates food festival throughout both towers of the Hyatt Regency Chicago.
AgWired Precision, Precision Ag Bytes, Precision Agriculture

Field Notes from Koch Agronomic Services – Episode 14

Chuck Zimmerman

The Field Notes podcast series from Koch Agronomic Services (Koch) breaks down the science and technology behind agronomy to help growers do more with less.

The experts we’ve heard from on our previous episodes have covered topics ranging from how different crops use nitrogen to the 4R’s of Nutrient Stewardship and how growers and retailers work together to choose the best input for an operation. If you haven’t checked out the previous episodes, you can find them on your favorite podcast platform.

Development of ANVOL

In this episode, we’ll discuss how and why Koch Agronomic Services developed their ANVOL nitrogen stabilizer. Even with the well-accepted AGROTAIN nitrogen stabilizer already trusted by growers, Koch was listening to their customers on what improvements could be made. Hear from two Koch representatives, product marketing manager Eric Vogel and research and development manager Drew Bobeck, as they discuss how the company used the concept of creative destruction to bring a better stabilizer to market in ANVOL.

You can listen to the program here: Development of ANVOL (12:10)

And to make sure you don’t miss an episode, choose an option to subscribe

For Spotify on your computer download the desktop app.

Agribusiness, AgWired Precision, Audio, Koch Agronomic Services, Podcasts, Soil

Golden Harvest Launches Gold Series Soybeans for 2022

Cindy Zimmerman

To help farmers achieve the highest yield potential, Golden Harvest has launched the Gold Series line of soybeans featuring exclusive genetics in high-demand trait platforms. Available for the 2022 season, the new lineup includes Enlist E3® soybeans and XtendFlex® soybeans.

Gold Series soybeans include exclusive genetics from Syngenta Seeds, which has one of the longest-running soybean breeding programs in the United States. Syngenta Seeds’ elite pool of exclusive genetics enables Golden Harvest to offer farmers many of the industry’s highest-yielding and leading defensive soybean varieties with flexibility in herbicide trait choice. The diversity of the Gold Series portfolio provides farmers with tailored solutions for their challenges.

“We’re thrilled to launch our first line of soybeans with exclusive Syngenta Seeds genetics,” said Stephanie Porter, Golden Harvest soybean product manager. “Our Gold Series soybean varieties offer farmers not only choice of trait platforms, but also choice of genetics. More choice means farmers have more ways to manage risk and diversify their operations.”

Porter was on-hand at the Farm Progress Show last week in Illinois to answer farmers’ questions about the new Gold Series. Learn more here and in the interview below.
FPS21 Interview with Stephanie Porter, Golden Harvest (4:00)

Audio, Farm Progress Show, Seed, Soybean, Syngenta

Animal Ag News 9/7

Carrie Muehling

  • NCBA’s 9th annual National Anthem Singing Contest sponsored by Norbrook, Inc. is open to current members of NCBA, ANCW, or CBB. The contest winner will sing the Star-Spangled Banner at the Opening General Session and at the Thursday Night NCBA Event at the 2022 Cattle Industry Convention in Houston! Entries will be accepted through October 15, 2021.
  • Kubota Tractor Corporation, the U.S. leader in sub-compact and compact tractors, threw its hat into the arena joining new partner PBR (Professional Bull Riders) for its second-annual Air Force Reserve Cowboys for a Cause charity exhibition event from aboard the historic U.S. aircraft carrier, the USS Lexington, on Saturday in Corpus Christi, Texas.
  • Mike Pompeo, former director of the Central Intelligence Agency and secretary of state, will be among featured speakers at Dairy Strong, one of the Midwest’s premiere conferences for the dairy community.
  • USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) African swine fever (ASF) Action Week is Sept. 13-17. The week includes daily webinars from 2 to 3:30 p.m. EDT. Register to receive daily updates during the week from USDA APHIS.
  • The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association and Public Lands Council denounced the administration’s elevated focus on federal wilderness designations as an overly-broad tool for reaching climate goals and targets laid out under the America the Beautiful conservation campaign.
  • In the serene countryside of northern Illinois, not even 1.5 hours from Chicago, sits an equestrian center with an important mission – one that is curating the healing of veterans through close-knit bonds made with Mustangs. Operation Wild Horse is a program of Veterans R&R, providing “a safe community where veterans, active-duty military, and families can build a significant Mustang/human bond that allows barriers to fall, communication to enhance, and trust to form.” Consisting of a three-person team – the experienced Mustang trainer, veteran coordinator, and the Mustangs themselves – the Operation Wild Horse curriculum assists with Military service-related challenges including post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), traumatic brain injury, hyper-vigilance, transition and reintegration issues, deployment, depression, anxiety and much more.
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) published an advance notice of proposed rulemaking (ANPR) to solicit comments and information regarding the labeling of meat and poultry products made using cultured cells derived from animals under FSIS jurisdiction. FSIS will use these comments to inform future regulatory requirements for the labeling of such food products. To view the ANPR and information on how to comment or submit information, visit the FSIS website at www.fsis.usda.gov/policy/federal-register-rulemaking/federal-register-rules.
  • The 10th annual National Dairy Council (NDC) New Product Competition seeks the next innovative dairy product from U.S. college students. Undergraduate and graduate students are eligible to compete by developing innovative dairy-based products for gamers. Successful entries will meet competition criteria, demonstrate innovation and provide value to consumers. The deadline for submissions is Jan. 17, 2022.
  • Record high boxed beef prices, coupled with struggling fat cattle prices has magnified the work that R-CALF USA is doing on behalf of the cattle industry. Support showed as producers gathered to raise money that would further R-CALF USA’s efforts that range from, but are not exclusive to, increasing fat cattle market competition to reinstating a mandatory country of origin labeling (MCOOL) law for beef.
AgWired Animal, Animal Agriculture, Animal Bites

New Hybrids Join Golden Harvest® Corn Portfolio

Cindy Zimmerman

At the Farm Progress Show last week, Golden Harvest announced the addition of 19 new hybrids to its corn portfolio.

Backed by the speed, power and precision of Syngenta Seeds research and development, the 19 new Golden Harvest corn hybrids range in relative maturity from 90 to 117 days and include:

  • Four hybrids with Agrisure Artesian® technology, built for top-end yield potential and season-long water optimization.
  • Six hybrids with the Agrisure Viptera® trait, the most comprehensive above-ground insect control and the only effective western bean cutworm control trait.
  • 12 hybrids with the Agrisure Duracade® trait for above- and below-ground insect protection and the best-in-class corn rootworm control.
  • 18 hybrids available as E-Z Refuge® seed blend products, providing a convenient, in-bag seed blend.


Golden Harvest head of marketing Dave Young says with corn harvest preparations just around the corner, farmers already have their eyes on the 2022 growing season and what’s needed for maximum yield potential in their fields. “By listening to farmers first and prioritizing research and development, we’re able to offer corn hybrids that surpass the status quo and make maximum yield potential a reality,” he said.

Golden Harvest head of marketing Dave Young – new hybrids in the Golden Harvest corn portfolio
FPS21 Interview with Dave Young, Golden Harvest (4:00)

Audio, Corn, Farm Progress Show, Seed, Syngenta

Industry Ag News 9/3

Carrie Muehling

  • Protein is a critically important part of a basic diet but how can the global animal protein sector continue to sustainably feed a growing and increasingly hungry world? That question is at the core of the upcoming forum, Sustainable Solutions for Zero Hunger by 2030: A Vision for Animal Agriculture, scheduled virtually for 12-5 p.m. ET on September 14, 2021.
  • The Georgia Peanut Commission is hosting a photo contest May 12-Oct. 1, 2021, to fill the pages of the 2022 Georgia Peanut Calendar. Photo entries must be taken during the 2020 or 2021 peanut crop year and feature peanut production. Entries must also be high resolution (300 dpi), horizontal and not taken with a phone; otherwise, they may be disqualified.
  • The Georgia Cotton Commission, Georgia Peanut Commission and the University of Georgia Extension Cotton and Peanut Teams, will co-sponsor a joint research field day on Wednesday, Sept. 8, 2021, in Tifton, Georgia.
  • MGEX, a Designated Contract Market and Derivatives Clearing Organization, reports August 2021 as the third best month in the history of the Exchange with a total of 394,547 contracts traded. This past month is now the best August in history edging out August 2020 by 24%. Total options volume was 11,033, making it the third month in a row where volume surpassed 10,000 contracts.
  • To more accurately reflect current capabilities and premier execution solutions for the agriculture marketplace, Beck Ag, Inc. announced updated branding. This new branding represents the ongoing evolution of Beck Ag’s capabilities and focus on strategic partnerships with clients enabling execution excellence within their organizations.
Zimfo Bytes

Day Three of the 2021 Farm Progress Show

Chuck Zimmerman

2021 Farm Progress ShowIt is a beautiful day for a farm show in Illinois. However, I’m on my way back to ZimmComm World Headquarters in Cantonment, FL. This has not been easy since my Springfield, IL flight was cancelled this morning and I’m now on a flight out of St. Louis, MO.

At the end of the day yesterday the Chicago, Gateway, Heartland
& Mid-America Chapters of the National Agri-Marketing Association got together for a reception during the Farm Progress Show. Here are some of our reception attendees having fun and enjoying some friendly camaraderie.

Speak of NAMA, the annual NAMA Fall Conference will be held in St. Loui, MO, October 4-6. I’m planning to attend and hope you will too. Registration is open.

Farm Progress Show, Farm Shows, NAMA