By Matt Reese
Beneath blue and sunny skies in the stunning Gaylord Palms Resort and Convention Center in Florida, the Commodity Classic is underway in Kissimmee. In between family trips to Disney, feeding the alligators every day and visits with Harry Potter, there is plenty of business to take care of for the farmers in attendance.
In terms of policy, the hot topics being debated include the stalled farm bill, political gridlock at the federal level and the labeling of genetically modified crops. When they are not in policy sessions, farmers are comparing notes, speculating about the potential for a continued drought in the western U.S. and seeing the newest agricultural offerings at the vast trade show.
Commodity Classic is the once-a-year, can’t-miss event for America’s soybean, corn, wheat and sorghum farmers. The event showcases the latest innovations first-hand and introduces game-changing ideas from the people who created them. Stay tuned for more policy updates from the event.
Here are some interviews and highlights from the event from Dale Minyo. Dale talked to Randy Dowdy, a first generation farmer from Georgia who grew more than 300-bushel corn, and Ohio farmers Mark Drewes, Jed Bower, and Don Jackson about how they are preparing for the 2013 growing season. Thursday’s coverage of Commodity Classic was sponsored by Seed Consultants, Simply the Best Value in the Seed Industry.
Don Jackson from Preble County was glad to get out of the drab Ohio weather and talked with Dale at Commodity Classic.
Fayette County farmer Jed Bower and he told Dale how 2012 weighs on his mind going into this year.
A good start in the fall has Ohio farmer Mark Drewes ready to go for 2013.
At BASF’s program on Wednesday, Georgia farmer Randy Dowdy talked about getting competitive corn yields in his part of the country.
Dale met up with Ohio producers Fred Yoder and Anthony Bush at Commodity Classic to talk about this year’s event.
Bart Johnson got in on the action in Florida and visited with Jim Otty of SFP.
Mark Schweibert is on the Grower Committee of Commodity Classic and he gave Matt Reese a behind-the-scenes look at how it all goes off without a hitch.
Dale also ran in to Schweibert and talked about his tenure on the National Corn Growers Association Board.
Many issues are being talked about at policy sessions at Commodity Classic. Dale talks with OCGA President Brent Hostetler about issues Ohio corn growers are discussing.
Channel is introducing new technology this year and Matt learned more from Dan Buesher.
Dale also visited with Buesher.
Ben Sequora caught Dale’s attention at the ESN Nitrogen booth.
Michelle Vigna visits with Dale about Roundup Ready technology.
An Ohio producer helping to make things happen on a National level is Hancock County farmer John Motter.