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A look at bale grazing

By Christine Gelley, Ohio State University Extension Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator, Noble County

Extending the grazing season is one of the best ways to save money on feed and reduce labor on the farm. In order to add grazing days to the calendar, farm managers must approach grazing with a plan and the willingness to be flexible. Rotationally grazing, utilizing multiple forage species and growing seasons, being thoughtful about stocking rates, adding fertility when needed, and having plentiful fence and water will increase chances for success.

Whether you have the ability to graze for a couple extra weeks or a couple extra months, the benefits of preparation will show up in the money you save on harvesting or purchasing supplemental feed. Regardless of how diligent you are about your grazing plans, it is difficult to provide sufficient grazing for livestock 365 days a year in Ohio and eventually you’ll be relying on stored feeds to meet the needs of your livestock.… Continue reading

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“Christmas Tree Ship” tradition returns

By Dan Armitage, Buckeye Sportsman

As in days of old in many Great Lakes ports, Christmas trees will in Toledo by boat on Saturday, Dec. 2, when The National Museum of the Great Lakes, in partnership with Geo. Gradel Co., invites folks to join a holiday tradition by welcoming back the “Christmas Tree Ship.” And thanks to the generosity of The University of Toledo Medical Center (UTMC), museum admission will be free for all on that Merry Saturday.

Here’s the backstory: on Nov. 23, 1912, the schooner Rouse Simmons sank in Lake Michigan while carrying Christmas trees, a popular way to transport the holiday trees at the time. Remembered as the Christmas Tree Ship, her captain, Herman E. Schuenemann, was known for giving trees to families in need. The story provides the inspiration behind the Museum’s community giveback event encouraging individuals to make a memory to last a lifetime by watching Santa arrive at the museum’s dock delivering Christmas Trees and holiday support.… Continue reading

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Trimble opens Technology Labs to advance agriculture and construction talent

Two state-of-the-art Trimble Technology Labs are now open to students at The Ohio State University College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES). One lab is on Ohio State’s Columbus campus, while a second is located on the CFAES Wooster campus. 

Trimble, headquartered in Westminster, Colo., built the multidisciplinary labs to enhance the university’s hands-on learning, teaching, research, and outreach activities in food and agricultural engineering, as well as in construction management. 

“The new Trimble Technology Labs help Ohio State lead the way when it comes to innovative agriculture programs,” said Cathann A. Kress, Ohio State vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES. “Not only does Trimble help the university in the classroom, but having such a well-respected agriculture partner engaged with the college opens a lot of doors within the industry for our students and community.”

The new Trimble Technology Labs provide students with access to leading agriculture and construction technologies used by industry professionals.… Continue reading

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Make the right fungicide choices to protect yields, ROI

Join Ohio Ag Net’s Joel Penhorwood in a timely discussion with BASF Technical Marketing Manager Kim Tutor, delving into the critical role of fungicides in Ohio’s unique growing conditions. Tutor highlights the impact of environmental stress on crops and how BASF’s fungicides provide a triple threat: disease control, stress mitigation, and improved growth efficiency. With a focus on corn for tar spot and the upcoming soybean fungicide innovation, the discussion arms growers to be prepared for the 2024 season.… Continue reading

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Hear Ohio Ag Net on 92.1 The Frog

We continue our series highlighting the outstanding Ohio Ag Net radio affiliates carrying the best in Ohio ag news.

This week, we say thank you to WFGF-FM serving Allen and surrounding counties, with newly added coverage of the 15-minute Morning Farm Show airing at 5:45 a.m.Tune in to 92.1 out of Lima to hear the Ohio Ag Net Monday-Friday at 5:45 a.m., 11:50 a.m., and 4:20 p.m.

The best in Ohio ag news is easy to find! If your current station doesn’t feature the voice of Ohio Ag—turn the dial! Click here to view the complete affiliate listing, including air times.Continue reading

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Poor tip-fill in corn

By Matt Hutcheson, CCA, Soybean Lead/Field Agronomist, Seed Consultants, Inc. 

One common issue observed and discussed during the 2023 growing season is poor tip fill, or tip-back in corn ears. A lack of kernel development at the tip of the ear can be cause for concern among growers. Keep in mind that any stress right before and during pollination can significantly impact kernel development. If you have scouted your corn fields late in the growing season and have noticed tip back, there are several factors that could be the cause:

• Pollination— if kernels did not develop at all near the tip of the ear, this is a sign of a pollination problem. The silks at the tip of the ear emerge last and stress at pollination can significantly impact them. Heat and drought stress can cause a lack of viable pollen as well as delayed silk emergence, resulting in no kernel development at the tip of the ear.… Continue reading

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Thanksgiving costs down for Ohioans

Courtesy of the Ohio Farm Bureau Federation

U.S. consumers will pay less for their favorite Thanksgiving dinner foods, including turkey, stuffing, pumpkin pie, sweet potatoes, cranberries, and milk, based on a new American Farm Bureau Federation Thanksgiving dinner cost survey.

The average cost of Thanksgiving dinner fixings for 10 people is $61.17, which breaks down to just over $6 per person. The overall cost for the holiday meal is down 4.5% or about $3 from last year, but the cost is still more than 25% higher than it was in 2019, which highlights the impact high supply costs and inflation have had on food prices.

“Because turkey is about half of the cost of the basket, any reduction in turkey prices ends up having a pretty substantial impact on the total cost,” said AFBF Senior Economist Veronica Nigh. “Turkey is down 5.6%. The big reason is that we didn’t have nearly as many cases of high path avian influenza.… Continue reading

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Pardon me, Mr. Turkey: National FFA’s Morgan Anderson assists in White House ceremony

Morgan Anderson, Ohio’s recently elected National FFA Officer, was one of those in attendance alongside her fellow student leaders as one of the great American traditions around this time of year took place. That’s right – two fortunate National Thanksgiving Turkeys were pardoned this week by President Biden on the South Lawn of the White House.

According to the National Turkey Federation, this White House tradition has been observed since 1947, signaling the beginning of the holiday season of national thanks and representing agriculture’s plentiful harvest and the contributions of America’s turkey growers.

The FFA members were able to witness the 20-week-old, 42-pound birds, named Liberty and Bell be pardoned.

In this interview, our own Matt Reese talks with Anderson about the unique experience.

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Using futures in a hedge account versus HTAs

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC 

Brazil’s weather caused some excitement in the bean market last week. One day forecasts showed no rain, and the next it did. Until late January, farmers should expect South America’s weather forecasts to have a big impact on prices. 

Unfortunately, corn hit a new calendar low this week at $4.61. While Brazil weather issues could still help corn prices, the estimated 2+ billion-bushel carryout will be hard to overcome without a big increase in export demand. 

Hedging grain — Using futures in a hedge account verses HTAs

I am often asked why I hedge my grain using a futures account instead of using HTA (Hedge To Arrive) contracts with an end user. Following are some of the pros and cons. 

Setting up a futures hedging account

This is a one time “hoop” hedgers using futures must do that selling an HTA does not require. Including a hedge line with a bank to finance the hedge account is also a good idea. … Continue reading

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Progress in the pushback on fertilizer tariffs

A recent decision by the U.S. Department of Commerce to significantly lower duties placed on phosphate fertilizers imported from Morocco has the potential to provide true savings to farmers while giving them access to crucial inputs that have been scarce over the last couple years, according to a recent analysis by the National Corn Growers Association. The decision comes after an intense advocacy effort by state and national corn grower associations.

Commerce decided in November to reduce rates on the imports from 19.97% to 2.12%. While that decision covers duties from Nov. 30, 2020 to Dec. 31, 2021, it could still be an incentive for OCP, the Moroccan company that manufactures the products, to reenter the U.S. market.
Growers say it is a big step in the right direction.

“The decision is very meaningful to us,” said Harold Wolle, Minnesota farmer and NCGA President. “Farmers were already facing rate hikes on inputs and the duties were making the situation worse.… Continue reading

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Farmland Values and Cash Rent

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

Every two years, Ohio State conducts a survey of farmers on cropland values and cash rent. Barry Ward, OSU Economist conducts this survey of professionals including ag business, farm managers, farmers, rural appraisers, and ag lenders. Western Ohio cropland values and rental rates are significantly different than the eastern and southern values. The type of soil, fertility, productivity, and generally higher returns result in higher prices in Western Ohio. Also, larger squarer fields, flatter soils, and access to crop markets add value to the cropland and to rental rates. In 2022-2023, Barry Ward surveyed 190 participants and the results were just released in August 2023. The numbers are reported for top, average, and bottom farmland with only the average farmland and cash rent values reported.

For all of Western Ohio, average producing cropland produced 185.3 bushels corn per acre and had a projected value of $9,672/acre in 2022 with a projected value of $10,329/acre in 2023 for a 6.8% increase in land values expected.… Continue reading

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Operation Evergreen again sending trees to troops

The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) and Ohio Christmas Tree Association (OCTA) are partnering once again to send American troops stationed in Kuwait 75 Ohio-grown Christmas trees. Operation Evergreen is an annual event that was held at ODA’s Reynoldsburg campus and organized by OCTA.

“Our servicemen and women deserve the best,” said Brian Baldridge, ODA Director. “Everything our farmers grow is first-rate and that includes Christmas trees. I am proud of the contribution both Ohio growers and ODA are making to ensure military members get a piece of home for the holidays.”

The trees are donated by Ohio Christmas tree growers and checked by ODA nursery inspectors before being sent to soldiers serving in the armed forces. Trees received a phytosanitary certificate for international shipment and will be delivered to troops. In addition, decorations were donated by local schools, churches, and veterans’ groups, ensuring the military units receiving the packages will have all that is needed to celebrate the holidays.… Continue reading

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Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 325 | Spilling the Beans About the Farm Bill Extension

In this episode of the Ohio Ag Net Podcast, hosts Matt Reese of Ohio’s Country Journal and Dusty Sonnenburg of Ohio Ag Net talk with Brandon Kern, Director of Public Policy and Issue Analysis at the Ohio Soybean Association. They talk about the future of the Farm Bill with the recent extension of the 2018 Farm Bill. Brandon also talks about priorities of soybean farmers and other policy updates. 

 More in this week’s podcast:   

  • Jonathan Coppess, University of Illinois: Jonathan talks with Matt about the Farm Bill process and what it looks like in broad terms. 
Jonathan Coppess6:48
Main Conversation, Brandon Kern17:30
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Corn harvest advances

Farmers took advantage of last week’s fair weather, making steady progress towards harvest completion, according to Ben Torrance, State Statistician, USDA NASS, Ohio Field Office. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated 2 percent very short, 20 percent short, 73 percent adequate, and 5 percent surplus. Statewide, the average temperature for the week ending on November 19 was 44.9 degrees, 3.7 degrees above normal. Weather stations recorded an average of 0.58 inches of precipitation, 0.01 inches below average. There were 5.4 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending November 19.

Last week’s field activities included corn harvesting, lime application and fall tillage. Eighty-one percent of corn was harvested. The moisture content of corn grain at harvest was 20 percent, unchanged from last week. Winter wheat was 95 percent emerged. Winter wheat condition was 84 percent good to excellent, down slightly from the previous week.

Click here to read the full report from USDA.Continue reading

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EPA pesticide proposal would affect millions of soy acres

By Scott Gerlt, American Soybean Association Chief Economist

The Environmental Protection Agency has recently released several proposals regarding its Endangered Species Act commitments under its pesticide program. One such proposal could significantly hinder or prevent pesticide use on close to 13 million acres of cropland, including over five million acres of soybeans. EPA holds responsibility for approving federal registration of pesticides in the United States. It determines the parameters for use during the registration process, including ensuring pesticide uses will not harm wildlife or the environment. The Vulnerable Species Pilot Project (VSPP) is part of EPA’s efforts to meet its obligations under the Endangered Species Act (ESA) to consider endangered species as part of federal  registration process. The broad approach EPA is proposing as part of the VSPP would greatly inhibit agriculture on a significant amount of land, and the agency intends to expand the pilot project to scale up the program to much larger areas in the future.… Continue reading

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Expanding opportunities for agroforestry

A team of Michigan, Ohio, and Wisconsin researchers and Extension professionals has recently been awarded funding from USDA and the National Fish and Wildlife Foundation to help support use of agroforestry practices and markets by small and medium sized farms in the region.

“This project involves a team of passionate and dedicated researchers and Extension professionals who have worked with farmers and woodland owners in the Upper Midwest for decades. This is a unique opportunity to support synergy between forestry and agriculture professionals and landowners to expand use of agroforestry practices through the region,” said Emily Huff, the project lead and associate professor in the Department of Forestry at Michigan State University.

Much is known about the characteristics, attitudes, and behaviors of U.S. family forest owners and agricultural landowners independently. However, little is known about those who own bothwoodland and farmland, and what, if any, agroforestry and woodland management practices are used by these Farmer Woodland Owners (FWOs).… Continue reading

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Consumers looking for soy-fed livestock

By Matt Reese and Dusty Sonnenberg

It is no secret that consumers are increasingly opinionated concerning the origins, production methods and ingredients in the food they eat. With this in mind, the United Soybean Board is working to better understand and quantify consumer preferences with regard to the meat they purchase.

“A lot of people aren’t sure what the protein source that they’re choosing to buy at the grocery store or some other retail establishment has been fed. One of the statistics out there says that 49% of consumers say that they knew that the animals were fed a vegetarian diet. We know from the industry that means the meat and bone meal has been excluded from the livestock diet. For the average consumer, though, they’re not aware of that. They do not understand we’re taking the soybeans we’re growing and producing another very healthy product for the consumers to eat.… Continue reading

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