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March 31 numbers bullish corn, bearish soybeans

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

USDA numbers on March 31 include U.S, Prospective acres and U.S. quarterly grain stocks as of March 1. U.S. acres: corn 89.49 million acres, soybean 90.96 million acres, and all wheat 47.35 million acres. U.S. grain stocks: corn 7.85 billion bushels, soybean stocks 1.931 billion bushels, and wheat stocks 1.02 billion bushels. 

Finally it is a USDA report day which has been on everyone’s radar for weeks. This report day has a long history of extreme volatility. The roller coaster ride for grain prices in the first 30 minutes following the report release could easily be violent. Many refer to this USDA report day as ranking in the top three report days of the entire year. End users are behind in getting forward coverage in place. If corn and soybean numbers are bearish, end user pricing could cushion the negative news.

Just after the noon report release, corn was up 22 cents, soybeans down 12 cents, and wheat up 15 cents.… Continue reading

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A spring of war

By Matt Reese

Retired Ohio State University Extension agronomist Harold Watters has been working with Ukrainian farmers and agronomists for over a decade. He has traveled to Ukraine many times to teach agronomics in person, but had switched to virtual teaching since 2020. Watters was finally set to return in person late last year.

“I was supposed to go in December and it got canceled because of impending disaster. Then I was supposed to go Feb. 18 but that got canceled too,” Watters said. “We were basically in the middle of a virtual class when it got canceled. They were saying, ‘We’re under attack and we’re shutting down.’ I am so worried about my friends there. I have met so many farmers across that country and they are very resilient. They are survivors. This country has been beat up on before. I am not surprised they are fighting back.

“They are wondering what they should do.… Continue reading

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USB adding value to soybeans

By Matt Reese and Dale Minyo

Farmer-leaders of the United Soybean Board (USB) announced a new strategic plan earlier this year that prioritizes sustainable soy solutions for global and domestic customers while ensuring value and profitability for U.S. soybean farmers. 

The seating of the new Chair and Executive Committee at its December meeting included appointments of the Supply and Demand Action Team leads, Priority Area coordinators and Communication & Education Committee chair, among other key roles within the organization.

“We take checkoff dollars to create value for the U.S. soybean and we invest that in research, education and, of course, promotion,” said Steve Reinhard, United Soybean Board treasurer and board member who farms in Crawford County. “Every dollar invested is returning $12.34 back according to a Cornell study. We are trying to be very targeted and strategic in the investments we make.” 

The USB Strategic Plan will guide checkoff investments in research, education and promotion across three priority areas of Infrastructure & Connectivity, Health & Nutrition, and Innovation & Technology.… Continue reading

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Time to assess forge stands

By Mark Sulc, Ohio State University Extension

With the onset of recent warm temperatures, forage stands are beginning to green up. Wet soil conditions and widely fluctuating temperatures have presented tough conditions for forage stands this winter. This is especially true of taprooted legumes like alfalfa and red clover. Many forage stands suffered significant fall armyworm feeding damage late last summer and into the fall, so those stands should be carefully evaluated this spring as they greenup. It is time to start walking forage stands (especially in southern and central Ohio) to assess their condition so decisions and adjustments for the 2022 growing season can be planned if necessary.

Forage stand evaluation can be performed when 3 to 4 inches of new shoot growth is present. Select random sites throughout the field and count the plants in a one-foot square area.  Check at least 4 to 5 random sites in each 20- to 25-acre area.… Continue reading

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EPA allows Enlist products in 134 previously banned counties for the 2022 growing season

Following the thorough review of a proposed label amendment, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has approved the use of Enlist One and Enlist Duo in 134 additional counties, providing growers with additional weed management options for the 2022 growing season. 

Enlist One and Enlist Duo, two herbicides used to control weeds in conventional and genetically-modified corn, cotton, and soybean crops, can now be used in all counties of Ohio, including the 12 counties in which previously banned. Other states with previous county bans are Arkansas, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, and South Dakota. In Texas, Enlist products can now be used in Bowie, Cooke, Fannin, Grayson, Lamar, and Red River counties. Read page 16 of the new Enlist One label and page 16 of the new Enlist Duo label to see which counties remain prohibited.

In January 2022, EPA issued seven-year registrations for these Enlist products. At that time, Enlist One and Enlist Duo were not approved for use in all counties of the United States.… Continue reading

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Avian Influenza found in Franklin county backyard flock

A release from the Ohio Department of Agriculture Wednesday confirmed that Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza has been detected in a backyard chicken flock located in Franklin county. The test samples were confirmed at the United States Department of Agriculture’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service laboratory. According to the release, the virus is highly contagious among birds and can be deadly to flocks in backyards and commercial facilitates.

Authorities have quarantined the area and are maintaining a surveillance zone in a 10-kilometer radius around the infected premises. The impacted livestock will be depopulated to contain the disease. Animals will not enter the food supply.

“Enhanced Biosecurity is the number one preventative measure against avian influenza,” said Dr. Dennis Summers, State Veterinarian in a statement. “HPAI can infect any size flock. We urge all poultry owners to intensify their biosecurity and best management practices.

Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza is carried by waterfowl like ducks, geese and shorebirds and can infect all poultry including chickens, turkeys, pheasants, quail, domestic ducks, geese, and guinea fowl.… Continue reading

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Managing for a high yielding 2022

By Matt Hutcheson, CCA, product manager, Seed Consultants, Inc.

With spring planting right around the corner, it is a good time to discuss key management practices and the impact they have on the growing season. You may have heard that the crop starts the season in the bag with its highest yield potential. That yield potential can be lost due to several factors throughout the season. While many factors leading to yield loss are out of our control (drought, disease development, insect pressure, etc.), it is important to properly manage the factors that can be controlled.  

Matt Hutcheson, product manager for Seed Consultants, Inc., talks to customers at a field day.

With the presence of herbicide-resistance weeds and the growing number of herbicide trait options, it is increasingly important for farmers to be well informed and meticulous in their weed control decisions. Knowing what weeds are present and which herbicides most effectively control them is a must.… Continue reading

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Are prices high enough to cure high prices?

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

Futures values are similar to Midwest weather, if you don’t like what is happening today wait until tomorrow and it will change. Last week:

• July corn finished up 22 cents at a new high of nearly $7.35

• December corn finished up 24 cents near $6.70, which is only 3 cents from its record high on Wednesday

• November finished up 30 cents, just shy of $15

• July wheat finished up 52 cents, just below $11, keeping it within the $10.25-$11.25 range from the last two and half weeks.

The destruction of Ukraine’s critical export infrastructure suggests that even if the war ends soon, it will take several months, if not years, before things resemble anything “normal.” The market will need to ration demand moving forward. High prices usually cure high prices, but these prices may not be high enough.

On March 31 the USDA will release their 2022 planting intentions estimates.… Continue reading

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Ocean shipping reform progressing

Last week, the Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee approved the “Ocean Shipping Reform Act of 2022” (S. 3580) to address longstanding supply chain issues and shipping port disruptions. The bill now moves to the full Senate; the House approved a similar measure late last year. Agriculture was well represented among 89 business groups that expressed support for the Senate bill in a late February letter to bill sponsors Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) and John Thune (R-SD). 

The groups noted that supply chain problems are expected to continue throughout 2022 and will “have a significant effect on inflation as well as continued economic recovery.” They pointed out that one of the biggest issues facing cargo owners and other supply chain stakeholders is detention and demurrage fees charged by shipping ports, terminal operators and common carriers on exporters and importers. S. 3580, among other actions, would formalize a Federal Maritime Commission interpretive rule on detention and demurrage charges and define the parameters for using them.… Continue reading

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Farm Credit lenders expanding online lending platform

Farm Credit lenders in 28 states announced they are collaborating to nearly triple in size the area where their shared online land loan application service will be available., the online service, will accelerate and simplify the farm and ranch loan process across more than 300 million acres. allows borrowers to apply for land financing 24/7, when and where it’s convenient for them. Within three business hours, applicants are contacted by a financing expert who answers questions and helps guide their loan application through their Farm Credit association’s review and approval process. 

“The FarmLend experience has been especially well-received by customers who value online convenience paired with quick access to financing and ag expertise,” said Carl Horne, vice president of digital loan products and services at Farm Credit Services of America (FCSAmerica). “Making financing experts who understand the ag real estate market accessible soon after someone applies online has allowed FarmLend to provide a unique ‘best of both’ experience that customers highly value.”… Continue reading

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U.S. and United Kingdom progressing with tariff talks

The United States and the United Kingdom agreed to drop retaliatory tariffs on each other’s products as part of trade talks between the two countries. U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai and U.K. Secretary of State for International Trade Anne-Marie Trevelyan met last week in Baltimore to discuss a U.S.-U.K. trade and investment agreement. A second round of talks will take place in the U.K. in the coming months.

Trevelyan also met with U.S. Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo to work out the tariffs issue, with the United States agreeing to rescind tariffs on British steel and aluminum imports and the U.K. dropping retaliatory duties on U.S. goods. The first Joint U.K.-U.S.Dialogues on the Future of Atlantic Trade included senior representatives from government and the business sectors. The two sides are seeking to boost trade between the countries and were expected to discuss how they can work together on digital and green trade. The National Pork Producers Council has been pressing the White House to negotiate new FTAs, including with the United Kingdom, and has been a supporter of closer trade relations with the U.K.… Continue reading

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Reducing off-target pesticide movement

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

Simply put, one of the primary goals of a spray applicator is to get the product on the target. While this sounds relatively straight forward, there are a number of factors that come into play. According to Erdal Ozkan, Professor in the Department of Food, Agricultural and Biological Engineering at The Ohio State University, factors that significantly influence the off-target movement of pesticides include wind velocity and direction, spray droplet size and density, and the distance between the spray tip and the target. Other factors include the velocity and direction of the spray droplet, volatility of the product being sprayed, air temperature, relative humidity, and turbulence. At the end of the day, if the product does not reach the target, the pesticide application will not be effective, and there may even be a situation of off-target pesticide movement that can injure adjacent crops or landscape plants.

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USDA extends application deadline for Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced the Department is extending to May 11, 2022, the application deadline for the Meat and Poultry Processing Expansion Program (MPPEP), which provides funding to expand meat and poultry processing capacity. 

The decision to extend the deadline comes after Rural Development heard directly from applicants about challenges with System for Award Management (SAM) registration, which must be completed prior to filing an application. 

“Strengthening our food supply chain is a top priority of the Biden-Harris Administration,” Vilsack said. “The new deadline should ensure that all interested and eligible meat and poultry processors have ample time to complete their applications.”

USDA Rural Development is making $150 million of American Rescue Plan Act funding available through the MPPEP. USDA is offering grants of up to $25 million each to expand processing capacity through a variety of activities, including but not limited to construction, expansion of existing facilities, and acquisition of equipment.… Continue reading

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Efforts encouraging more dairy in school lunches

The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) and the International Dairy Foods Association (IDFA) submitted joint comments to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service urging the agency to improve nutrition security by updating school meal nutrition standards to encourage increased consumption of dairy in keeping with recommendations from the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA) report and with leading health organizations.

In 2020, the federal Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee report found that a staggering 79 percent of 9- to 13-year-olds are not meeting the recommended intake of dairy foods and thereby under-consuming a variety of nutrients during childhood and adolescence, including potassium, calcium, and vitamin D. In their comments to USDA, IDFA and NMPF noted that school children of all ages are falling short of these recommendations, and they rely on school meals to meet their nutritional needs. IDFA and NMPF also noted that falling participation rates in school breakfast and lunch programs as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic are a growing concern for overall nutrition security among students.… Continue reading

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SEC requiring firms to report GHG emissions

The Securities and Exchange Commission voted 3-1 to propose regulations mandating that publicly traded companies report their carbon emissions and other climate-related information, providing risk analyses, goals and other potentially sensitive business data.

In addition to detailing their direct greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions, firms would be required to report on the GHGs from partner companies, suppliers and distributors. One research and advisory company with experience in environmental, social and governance reporting estimates the cost of complying with the rule would be $6.7 billion over the next three years.

A public comment period of at least 30 days will follow the proposed rule’s publication in the Federal Register. The National Pork Producers Council and other agricultural organizations are reviewing the 570-page regulation and will submit comments on a number of concerns.… Continue reading

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When will you start planting corn and soybeans?

By Greg LaBarge, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

Every agronomist and farmer knows the connection between timely planting and crop yields. The Ohio Agronomy Guide has a recommended Ohio corn plant date range of April 15 to May 10 for northern and April 10 to May 10 for southern regions. Recommended soybean planting is a similar timeframe. RELATIVE grain yield potential is indeed reduced after May 1. However, we need to remember more factors than planting date influence ACTUAL YIELD at harvest. Soil conditions at and after planting are more important than the calendar date to answer when to start planting.

At the Conservation Tillage and Technology Conference (CTTC), we had research agronomists from around the Midwest share their research on planting date and management interactions. Dan Quinn, Purdue Corn Agronomist, shared these corn planting observations. 1) Early planting favors higher yields but are no guarantee. 2) Statewide averages for planting date and yield are not strongly related.… Continue reading

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Price volatility continues

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Mid-March price volatility continues to be huge for all the grains. Wheat has experienced by far the largest number of limit days since early February. Daily limits for wheat expanded multiple times, finally reaching $1.30 and then declining to 85 cents just before St. Patrick’s Day. The normal daily range for wheat is 50 cents. Updated daily limits will be announced later this month, remaining in effect until Nov. 1. Wheat has been the most volatile commodity since the Russia invasion into Ukraine.

Upcoming USDA reports 

USDA was scheduled to release two potential market moving reports on March 31: Planting Intentions, and Quarterly Grain Stocks. Trade estimates for the Planting Intentions Report were lacking at this writing. USDA will release the first supply and demand tables for the 2022 U.S. growing season on May 12. Three weeks ago trade estimates for 2022 US corn and soybean acres were very similar to 2021 numbers.… Continue reading

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The Agriculture Education Foundation offers scholarships for future agri-science educators

The Agriculture Education Foundation is accepting applications for five $1,000 scholarships to be issued to college students enrolling in Ohio’s agriculture educator programs for the fall semester 2022.

This opportunity is open to any student who meets the minimum qualifications and is enrolled or planning to enroll in an agriculture teaching major or 4-H extension major at any of Ohio’s three Universities offering these programs, another two year or four-year school in Ohio offering a two plus two programs or another pathway to become an agriculture teacher or extension educator.

The five scholarships will consist of two for students at a four-year institution, two for students at a community college with a 2 plus 2 program, and one for an individual using the alternative pathway to become an agri-science teacher. This will be a non-reimbursable scholarship that can be used for tuition, university housing and class materials. All funds will be administered through the institution’s office of billing and or tuition assistance.… Continue reading

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Breed show results from Beef Expo

The 34th Ohio Beef Expo was held March 17-20 at the Ohio Expo Center in Columbus, Ohio.

Four breeds held shows on Friday to display cattle being sold in the sales. The following are the results from the shows: 

Miniature Hereford 

Judge – Ray Ramsey, Greenfield, IN
Champion Bull – THF TB12 2721 – Brenna Thorson, Rudolph, Ohio
Reserve Champion Bull – ALL HIS WAYLON – All His Farm, Butler, Ohio
Champion Prospect Steer – EL THEO – Cayden Wood
Reserve Champion Prospect Steer – RDS FRITTER – Seamus Bly, Painesville, Ohio

Champion Female – WCR STLZ HF BELLA D01J ET – John Humphreys, Wolcott, IN
Reserve Champion Female – AAH SHE’S ALL CASH J001 ET – Anville Acres, Boonsboro, MD
Champion Market Steer – EL WOODY – Trenton Havenar, Piqua, Ohio
Reserve Market Steer – EZ THOR – Kylie McDonald, Greenville, Ohio 


Judge – Gene Steiner, Ohio 

Champion Shorthorn Bull – Pleasant White Lightening – Pleasant View Farms, Given, WV 

Reserve Champion Shorthorn Bull – MBCF Raising A “LiL” Kane – Maple Brook Farms, Ridgeway, Ohio 

Champion ShorthornPlus Bull – KCE Wicked Pissah 094J – Kleine Cattle Enterprises, Middletown, IN 

Reserve Champion ShorthornPlus Bull – Rainy Day Kamikaze – Rainy Day Shorthorns, Jerusalem, Ohio 

Champion Shorthorn Female – Paradise Proud Fool 2103 ET – Paradise Cattle Company, Ashville, Ohio 

Reserve Champion Shorthorn Female – DASC Cindy Beauty 2103 ET – Dasco Cattle Company, LLC, Republic, Ohio 

Champion ShorthornPlus Female – JJB Moonstruck 428C ET – BIll Apple Cattle Company, Gowanda, NY 

Reserve Champion ShorthornPlus Female – Agle Max Rosa – Agle Family Shorthorns, South Vienna, Ohio 


Judge – Ray Ramsey, Greenfield, IN 
Champion Bull – UHF U14F Stetson U24H – Ralph E.… Continue reading

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