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Pharmacy loses in opioid case ruling

By Leisa Boley Hellwarth

Just this past November, a federal jury in Cleveland delivered the first jury verdict in an opioid case and the first verdict against a pharmacy. In the late 1990s, pharmaceutical companies reassured the medical community that patients would not become addicted to opioid pain relievers, and healthcare providers began to prescribe them at greater rates. Increased prescription of opioid medications led to widespread misuse of both prescription and non-prescription opioids before it became clear that these medications could indeed be highly addictive. In 2017, HHS declared a public health emergency. 

All I know about the opioid epidemic I learned from Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic by Sam Quinones. I highly recommend this book that deftly recounts how a flood of prescription paid meds, along with black tar heroin from Nayaril, Mexico, transformed the once-vital blue-collar city of Portsmouth, Ohio and other American communities into heartlands of addiction.… Continue reading

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Drainage water management and winter cover crops

By Vinayak Shedekar, Rachel Cochran and Boden Fisher

With water-level control structures for controlled drainage gaining popularity in farms across Ohio, some questions about the management practice have surfaced, including this one: How can we effectively utilize both controlled drainage and winter crops? 

The NRCS Practice Standard 554 recommendation is to raise the outlet elevation of the water control structure to within 12 inches or less of the ground surface during non-cropped (fallow) periods. Ordinarily, this wouldn’t pose any issues, as there isn’t a need for field trafficability in the wintertime. However, having a water table within 6 inches to 12 inches of the soil surface while a crop is growing in that field may pose some risk for the crop’s root growth and yield potential. We spoke with experts in and around Ohio and a few farmers who are already using controlled drainage and winter crops to find out how they are managing both practices.… Continue reading

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Wellmann passed away

James A. Wellmann, 67, of Delphos, passed away January 18, 2022, at Mercy Health St. Rita’s.

He was born January 16, 1955, to the late Elmer John and Phyllis (Davis) Wellman. On November 18, 1989, he married the love of his life, Jean Ditto, who survives in Delphos.

James Wellmann

James was a very devoted and loving husband and father. He was a very humble, unassuming and faithful man. The most memorable times of his life were spent with Jean, Father Andrew and Chelsea.

James was a 1973 graduate of St. John’s High School and a 1977 graduate of The Ohio State University, where he earned a Bachelor’s Degree in Agriculture with a major in Agronomy. His first job “off the farm” was from 1973 to 1977 when he worked with Joe Parsons and Dave Roach broadcasting high school ballgames on WDOH. James was president of Wellman Seeds, Inc., Wellman Farms, Inc.,… Continue reading

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Deerfield Ag Services Fair Funding Starter Scholarship Program

Deerfield Ag Services has launched their Fair Funding Starter Scholarship Program. 

As a family-owned, full-service agricultural service provider, Deerfield Ag Services has supported 4-H and FFA youth exhibitors at county fairs for decades through participation in county fair livestock auctions. During the 2022 fair season, they are launching a new initiative that will grant funding to individual youth exhibitors at the start of their projects, intended to

offset some of the initial investments associated with fair livestock projects. While these scholarships will not likely offset the full cost of getting started, they hope to help make it more attainable for junior fair participants to take part in exhibiting the livestock of their choice. The scholarship amounts vary by project, and are as follows:

● Rabbit & Poultry — $25

● Goat and Lamb — $75

● Horse — Up to $100

● Swine — Up to $250

● Beef — Up to $350

The scholarship is eligible to students in Portage, Stark, Columbiana, Mahoning and Trumbull

Counties.… Continue reading

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Mental Health First Aid training series

First Aid isn’t always a band-aid, CPR, or the Heimlich Maneuver. Sometimes people just need you! 

Learn more about the warning signs and symptoms of mental health issues in the Mental Health First Aid training series. The next training is April 14 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Future trainings will be held May 6, June 3, July 18, and Aug. 12. 

Two hours of self-paced training needs to be completed prior to the 4.5 hour Zoom training which begins at 10:00 a.m. and includes a lunch break. This course is valued at $170 but is FREE thanks to funding from a USDA FRSAN grant.

This research was supported by the intramural research program of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, 7 U.S.C 5936, Section 7522 of FCEA of 2008, Farm and Ranch Stress Assistance Network (FRSAN).

Ohio State university’s CFAES provides research and related educational programs to clientele on a nondiscriminatory basis.… Continue reading

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Enjoying the view

By Matt Reese

As I write this I’m listening to the cold January wind whistle in around one of the last couple of old windows in my old farmhouse. Most of the windows in the house have been replaced, but this one has not, for a couple of reasons. 

Foremost, the picture window is the largest in the house and the most expensive to replace. And, well, I have been raised by generations of frugal farmers trained to make do with what you’ve already got (my grandfather was known to wear 30-year-old dress pants patched with strips of duct tape rather than purchase new farm work pants). 

There is also some sentimentality with the old window not lost upon me. Years ago an older gentleman who grew up in this house long before I owned it stopped by and asked if he could come in and see the old place, and how it has changed since his time here.… Continue reading

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Weed management considerations (part 4)

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader, a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean check-off

Weed control in soybeans and herbicide trials have been the subject of research conducted in the Becks Practical Farm Research (PFR) the last several years. Getting back to the basics of herbicide application and tank mixing, and even the water used as a carrier are important considerations. “Most of the water used for spraying is well water which has varying degrees of hardness,” said Luke Schulte, Field Agronomist for Becks. “Anything about 125 parts per million is considered hard. The calcium and magnesium present in the water are cations that make water hard and can interfere with herbicide performance.”

The use of ammonium sulfate (AMS) to condition spray water is important for multiple reasons.

“AMS has two roles. The first role is as a nitrogen source to bond and magnetize with the weak acids herbicide to help move it into the plant,” Schulte said.

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Congratulations to Harold Watters on his retirement!

By Laura Lindsey, Ohio State University Extension

After 20+ years at Ohio State, Harold Watters retired earlier this year. Most recently, Harold was an Ohio State University Extension Field Specialist for Agronomic Systems, but his history at OSU dates back to 1975 when he was a student employee at the Farm Science Review. In his own words, Harold’s goal has been “…to do the work that needed to be done for row crop farmers — whether it was in response to drought in 2012, or floods and late planting in 2015…or the concerns of nutrient management and water quality.”

I cannot even begin to list Harold’s involvement, achievements, and impact he has had on Ohio’s agricultural community (and also international work in the Ukraine). Harold was co-leader of the OSU Extension’s AgCrops Team from 2004 through 2019. He helped move the team forward into the digital age with a website, easier transfer of the CORN newsletter, and provided lots of support for agronomic crops meetings.… Continue reading

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Where is the cacao?

By Jeffrey K. Lewis, Attorney and Research Specialist, Ohio State University Agricultural and Resource Law Program 

A California man (Plaintiff) is suing Costco Wholesale Corporation (Costco) for allegedly mislabeling Costco’s “Chocolate Almond Dipped Vanilla Ice Cream Bars” (the Product). Plaintiff argues that because of the Product’s packaging and name, he expected the Product’s chocolate would have been predominately derived from cacao beans. Plaintiff asserts that chocolate is defined by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and California law “as prepared from ground roasted cacao bean” and that it must be “made chiefly from cacao beans with a small amount of optional ingredients.” Based on this definition, Plaintiff claims that Costco’s packaging is misleading because the Product’s chocolate contains mostly vegetable oils and small amounts of ingredients derived from cacao beans. In his Complaint, Plaintiff argues that federal regulations require Costco to label the Product as “milk chocolate and vegetable oil coating” rather than just “chocolate.”… Continue reading

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Enlist herbicide banned in 12 Ohio counties

By Mark Loux, Ohio State University Extension herbicide specialist

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a new seven-year registration for Enlist One and Enlist Duo, valid through January 2029. Changes include a revised application cutoff for soybeans, “through R1” that replaces “up to R2” on previous labels, and the addition of a slew of spray nozzles to the approved nozzle list. The most significant change for Ohio is that, due to changes in Endangered Species information, Enlist One and Enlist Duo cannot be used in 12 Ohio counties: Athens, Butler, Fairfield, Guernsey, Hamilton, Hocking, Morgan, Muskingum, Noble, Perry, Vinton, and Washington. We contacted Corteva to see if this was likely to change anytime soon, and got no assurances of this, although the PR information they have distributed indicates it is possible. 

This really couldn’t happen at a worse time for growers in these counties. We’re in the middle of an endless pandemic, a worldwide shipping fiasco, with herbicide scarcities and price increases, and parts shortages.… Continue reading

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Weed management considerations (part 3)

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Ohio Field Leader, a project of the Ohio Soybean Council and soybean check-off

Planting soybeans early can pay off.

“When you think about all the management practices preformed on a soybean field, such as tillage or foliar feeding, the most common thread among high yielding soybeans is planting as early as you can,” said Luke Schulte, Field Agronomist for Becks. “The risk of early planting is a higher volume of cold fronts with cold wet soils. Those conditions can impact soybean growth and herbicide metabolism. Injured soybeans may not metabolize certain herbicides as efficiently when injured.”

Yield loss can occur if there is injury to beans, but also if there are weed escapes from the pre- that needs to be contended with in the post application.

When going into a season, the weather and growing conditions need to be taken into consideration when implementing a herbicide program.

Continue reading

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Tax reporting and third-party payment apps

By Brian Ravencraft

The various third-party payment apps that have become popular in recent years have changed the game for sure. They include PayPal, Venmo, and Cash App, just to name a few. We all use our favorite apps for different reasons, but moving forward, things won’t be as simple as pressing a button.

The IRS recently released a tax law requiring those conducting business on third party payment apps to report all transactions exceeding $600 in a calendar year. The new law went into effect on Jan. 1, 2022, so business owners need to be documenting those transactions carefully from this month on. Taxpayers who cross over the $600 mark using third-party apps for payment will receive a 1099-K form. From there, the taxpayer will be required to report the information to the IRS by a certain deadline.

Currently, reporting is only required if a payment was made in exchange for goods and services. This means, if you send your friend Venmo for the dinner tab they picked up, reporting is not required.… Continue reading

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Right to Farm Act upheld in North Carolina

By Jeffrey K. Lewis, Attorney and Research Specialist, Ohio State University Agricultural and Resource Law Program 

A three-judge panel on the North Carolina Court of Appeals upheld the constitutionality of North Carolina’s right to farm law. In 1979, the North Carolina legislature enacted the Right to Farm Act (the Act). In 2017 and 2018 the North Carolina legislature amended the Act by passing House Bill 467 and Senate Bill 711 (collectively referred to as the Amendments). The Amendments sought to clarify and strengthen North Carolina’s right to farm law. The Plaintiffs argued that the Amendments violated North Carolina’s equivalent of the U.S. Constitution’s Fourteenth Amendment Due Process Clause and that the Act exceeded the scope of North Carolina’s police power. The Court of Appeals disagreed. The Court recognized North Carolina’s interest in promoting and preserving agriculture and that North Carolina has the authority to regulate such an interest. 

The Plaintiffs also argued that the Amendments were “private laws” to specifically protect the swine industry in violation of North Carolina’s Constitution.… Continue reading

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USDA to invest up to $225 million in partner-driven conservation on agricultural and forest land

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced up to $225 million in available funding for conservation partners through the Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP). RCPP is a partner-driven program that leverages collective resources to find solutions to address natural resource challenges on agricultural land. This year’s funding announcements include opportunities for projects that address climate change, benefit historically underserved producers and support urban agriculture.  

“These public-private partnerships are powerful tools that allow us to work together to address challenges such as climate change and supporting producers and communities who have been underserved in the past,” said Jon Bourdon, Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Acting Ohio State Conservationist.

There are two types of funding opportunities under RCPP:  RCPP Classic and RCPP Alternative Funding Arrangements (AFA). RCPP Classic projects are implemented using NRCS contracts and easements with producers, landowners and communities, in collaboration with project partners. Through RCPP AFA, partners have more flexibility in working directly with agricultural producers to support the development of new conservation structures and approaches that would not otherwise be available under RCPP Classic. Project… Continue reading

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Meat exports staying strong

U.S. beef export value reached another new high in November, topping $1 billion for the second time in 2021, according to data released by USDA and compiled by the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF). November pork exports were lower than a year ago, but year-to-date export value maintained a record pace at more than $7.5 billion.

November beef exports totaled 123,641 metric tons (mt), up 7% from a year ago and the fourth largest monthly volume in the post-BSE era. Export value was a record $1.05 billion, up 49% year-over-year and exceeding the previous high set in August 2021. For January through November, beef exports were on a record volume pace at 1.32 million mt, up 16% from a year ago. Beef export value, which had already set a new annual record through October, increased more than $2.5 billion from a year ago, soaring 39% to $9.59 billion. Beef exports to South Korea, China/Hong Kong and Central America have already set new annual records for both volume and value, while exports to Taiwan and the Dominican Republic reached new value records.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 235 | Data, Data, Data

David Scheiderer and JD Bethel of Integrated Ag Services join the podcast to talk about plot trials and yes, lots of Data. Dale has a report with Farm Credit Mid America’s Patrick Link and Jennie Schultice on the “Stock The Trailer” program. He also visits with Connie Smith of the Fairfield County Fair, the fair that won the food bank challenge. All of that and more thanks to AgriGold!… Continue reading

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When energy policy and sustainability clash

By Guil Signorini, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science, The Ohio State University

Guil Signorini

Brazil offers one of the most exciting cases of success when it comes to clean energy. Due to a favorable landscape, an abundance of rivers, and natural dams, approximately 65% of the electricity consumed in the country comes from large-scale hydropower plants. But it was through innovative policy reform in 1995 that renewable energy producers were authorized to trade electricity directly with final consumers. Fast forward, estimations suggest that 9.5% of the electricity consumed today comes from biomass, the second most important source in Brazil’s electricity matrix. Biomass-based electric generated by agricultural products is used for lighting approximately one-tenth of the country’s houses, farms, and businesses.

The Brazilian fuel sector is just as clean. Nearly all fuel stations sell ethanol, gasoline, and diesel. Most passenger cars and motorcycles are equipped with flex-fuel engines that can take gasoline, ethanol, or any blend between the two fuels.… Continue reading

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“Planning for the future of your farm” workshops

To kick off 2022, OSU Extension will be offering “Planning for the future of your farm” workshops to help farm families actively plan for the future of their farm business. The workshops are designed to help farm families learn strategies and tools to successfully create a succession and estate plan which can be used as the guide to transfer the farm’s ownership, management, and assets to the next generation. Learn how to have the crucial conversations about the future of your farm.

Topics discussed during this series include: Developing Goals for Estate and Succession; Planning for the Transition of Control; Planning for the Unexpected; Communication and Conflict Management during Farm Transfer; Legal Tools & Strategies; Developing Your Team; Getting Your Affairs in Order; and Selecting an Attorney.  This workshop will be taught by members of the OSU Farm Office Team.

Families can choose to attend the workshop virtually or in-person at regional workshops which will be held across the state.… Continue reading

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OPA elects new officers

The Ohio Poultry Association (OPA) announced its 2022 officers during the organization’s recent board meetings held in Columbus. Three individuals were elected to the Board and will work over the next year to further advance the organization’s mission. 

The 2022 Board officers include: 

• OPA President Sandra Lausecker. Lausecker is vice president of Nature Pure and co-owner of Outward Farms located in Raymond. She also serves on the board of the American Egg Board and United Egg Producers.  

• OPA Vice President Jeff Cutler. Cutler serves as the eggs division manager for Cooper Farms located in northwest Ohio. In addition, he also serves on the board of the American Egg Board. 

• OPA Secretary Drew Bowman. Bowman is co-owner of Bowman & Landes, based in New Carlisle, Ohio.  

• In 2022, Doug Mack will move into the past president role for the association. Mack currently serves as the chief operating officer for Trillium Farms, in Croton.  

 “I look forward to working with these exceptional leaders over the next year as they each bring unique perspectives to the table to further advance our work,” said Jim Chakeres, OPA executive vice president.… Continue reading

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Soybean farmers invited to participate in survey

Gary Schnitkey, University of Illinois, and Carl Zulauf, Emeritus Professor, The Ohio State University, are conducting an online survey of soybean growers in nine soybean producing states, including Ohio. The nine states represent 75% of U.S. soybean production.

The researchers intend to measure the impact of each communication channel – mass media, social media, and interpersonal meetings – on farmers’ decision-making to adopt a new digital technology. This survey is focused on soybean producers in these states: Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Indiana, Nebraska, Missouri, Ohio, South Dakota, and North Dakota. The results will support new research and contribute in a practical way to increase knowledge about the most efficient communication channels for the dissemination of digital agriculture technologies.

The survey takes approximately five minutes to complete, and all data will be kept confidential.  If interested, you can provide your email address to receive a copy of the final survey results.

If you are interested in participating in this survey, please click here: reading

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