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Ohio beef farmers partner with Kroger to provide for local military families

Ohio beef farmers, through the Ohio Beef Council, in conjunction with Kroger, were able to donate 2,000 pounds of ground beef to the central and southern Ohio USO, all going to military famillies in need.

The six-day campaign was launched on May 26 via Facebook encouraging social media enthusiasts to “share” a post on Facebook, and “like” both Ohio Beef Council and Kroger Facebook pages. Each Facebook ‘share’ would result in another pound of beef being donated to the USO.

Beef farmers and Kroger respresentatives were overwhelmed with the amount of support they received. “This promotion is a great example of collaboration to achieve a common goal,” said Joe Grieshaber, President of Kroger’s Columbus Division. “Together, with our friends at the Ohio Beef Council, we were able to donate 2,000 pounds of ground beef to local military families. At Kroger, we are proud to support our troops and their families any way we can.”… Continue reading

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Supplemental forage options for early summer planting

Now that first harvest of forage crops is completed or in progress, some may be noticing the low yields in damaged forage stands, or they may realize the need for additional forage supplies this summer. There is always the temptation to no-till something into existing stands in an effort to produce more tonnage, but I believe that is a risky proposition this time of the year. The existing stand will compete heavily for moisture and regrowth of the existing stand will shade new seedlings struggling to get established. So at this point in the year, I think it is best to either kill a poor stand and seed an annual crop for summer forage production, or find open land available to seed an annual forage for supplemental feed.

There are several good options for producing supplemental forage from annual crops planted in June, which are discussed here. Additional options for supplemental forage exist for planting in late summer, particularly following wheat harvest.… Continue reading

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Over-the-counter antibiotics for livestock being phased out

Changes are coming for livestock producers. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued the final rule that will phase out the use of feed grade and water soluble antibiotics for increased feed efficiency or to promote growth. FDA is also changing how producers can obtain these products to treat diseases, which will be by prescription only.

Craig Payne, the director of Veterinary Extension at the University of Missouri, says animal health companies have agreed to voluntarily change labeling to accomplish these goals. In order for producers to get a prescription – or Veterinary Feed Directive – they have to establish what’s called a Veterinary Client Patient Relationship (VCPR).

“Livestock producers now have to have a working relationship with their veterinarian before their vet can legally write a veterinary prescription,” Payne said.

Even though the target date for the changes isn’t until December 2016 – Payne encourages producers to begin discussing these changes with their veterinarian.… Continue reading

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Researchers look at lower-cost alternative protein source for pig diets

Threonine is an indispensable amino acid, which is often provided in supplement form in swine diets. With U.S. production of crystalline amino acids increasing, more co-products from amino acid production are becoming available, and these co-products can also be fed to pigs. Researchers at the University of Illinois are investigating a co-product of synthetic threonine as a lower-cost alternative protein source to fish meal.

“To create synthetic threonine, you ferment a carbohydrate substrate using selected strains of bacteria, then extract the crystalline L-threonine from the fermentation product,” said Hans H. Stein, a professor of animal sciences at U of I. “The biomass that’s left over, even though most of the threonine has been extracted, is still rich in amino acids. If those amino acids are well digested by pigs, this could be a good source of protein.”

Stein and his fellow researchers conducted two experiments comparing threonine biomass with fish meal.… Continue reading

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June weather outlook

It appears June will remain a warm and humid month overall. Most daytime temperatures will remain at or below 90 degrees but nighttime low temperatures will be much above average due to more clouds and humidity during June. Expect lots of lows in the 60s and even some 70s in June.

Even though there are pockets of dry areas, expect a wetter month of June. There are some scattered rain chances early and again the middle of the week but it will be scattered. Rain chances appear to increase into the week of June 14-21 with locally heavy rain possible.

See the latest week 2 outlook from NOAA at:

The 16-day rainfall outlook on NOAA/NWS/Ohio River Forecast Center:

Normal rainfall is close to an inch per week.

The latest water resources outlook from the Ohio River Forecast Center can be found at:

Looking ahead into July, temperatures still look normal or slightly above normal with rainfall possibly drying out.… Continue reading

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Seedling blights of corn

We like growers to plant their corn early, however, we want them to wait until the ground is ready and soil temperatures are 50 degrees and above. When you have a lot of area to cover, you have to plant when the weather will let you. But this can create opportunities for disease organisms and insects to attack the newly emerging plants. This year after planting, it turned cold and the seedling blights had their chance to invade. There have been several reports of seedling root-rot in corn fields. Some of the causes for seedling blights are as follows:

• Seedling diseases are favored by wet and cool soil conditions (50-55 F) after planting. Corn planted early or in no-till ground is more susceptible to these diseases. Recent cool and wet periods were ideal for the pathogens that cause seedling blights.

• The disease organisms that infect corn seedlings are species of Pythium, Fusarium and Rhizoctonia.… Continue reading

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ODA announces 2015 agricultural easements approved for purchase

The Ohio Department of Agriculture (ODA) today announced approval for local sponsors to purchase agricultural easements on 54 family farms representing 7,512 acres in 26 counties.

Local sponsoring organizations, which include land trusts, counties, a township and local Soil and Water Conservation Districts, receive funding from the Clean Ohio Fund to manage the Local Agricultural Easement Purchase Program (LAEPP). The easement ensures farms remain permanently in agricultural production. The program supports the state’s largest industry, food and agriculture.

To be eligible for the program, farms must be larger than 40 acres or next to a preserved farm, actively engaged in farming, participate in the Current Agricultural Use Valuation program, demonstrate good stewardship of the land, have support from local government and not be in close proximity to development. Landowners may use the proceeds of the easement in any way they wish, but most reinvest it in their farm operation.

Communities wishing to participate next year can apply to be Certified Local Sponsors between September 15 and October 15, 2015.… Continue reading

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Ohio Corn and Soybean Enterprise Budgets project slightly lower costs but low to negative returns

Production costs for Ohio field crops may be flat to slightly lower in 2015 but the profit picture looks poor, much the same as it did 2014. Variable costs for trend line Ohio corn and soybean production for 2015 will be slightly lower than 2014. Variable costs for corn (163 bushels per acre) for 2015 are projected to be $412 per acre. Variable costs for 2015 Ohio soybeans (48 bushels per acre) are projected to be $210 per acre. Lower energy and crop insurance costs and zero to slight increases for many other inputs have led to the slightly lower production cost projections for Ohio’s two major commodity crops.

With continued lower crop prices expected for 2015 returns will likely be low to negative for many producers. Projected returns above variable costs (contribution margin) range from $138 to $272 per acre for corn and $236 to $439 per acre for soybeans.… Continue reading

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Purple corn showing up in Ohio

Purple corn?

No, you’re not seeing things.

Growers who have reported finding corn seedlings in their fields that have turned purple or yellow probably don’t need to panic – the color change is likely just a cosmetic problem that will go away on its own, said an agronomist in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University.

But, if the plants don’t change back to their normal color, growers will have to determine if a nutrient deficiency or some other issue may be causing the issue, said Peter Thomison, an Ohio State University Extension agronomist. OSU Extension is the statewide outreach arm of the college.

Corn seedlings can take on strange hues for environmental reasons, but will change to normal healthy green after several days of 70 degree or higher temperatures, Thomison said. But they also might turn yellow due to low nitrogen uptake or limited chlorophyll synthesis or purple due to reduced root development, he said.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Crop Progress Report – June 8th, 2015

Last week’s weather allowed for fields to dry out and field work to continue, according to the USDA, NASS, Great Lakes Regional Office. There were 4.3 days suitable for fieldwork for the week ending June 7th. Heavy rains two weeks ago forced many to spend the week replanting corn and soybeans. Hay making was underway as hay growth demanded it although damp wet conditions weren’t ideal for dry hay making. Wheat continued to go through heading and flowering stages. Spraying and side-dressing continued last week as well; producers are still waiting to determine if disease will spread from the rains two weeks ago.

Read the latest Crop Progress Report for OhioContinue reading

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Milk price outlook

Two key U.S. dairy commodity prices are showing signs of new life; cheese ($1.70+ per pound) and butter ($1.95+ per pound) are up from recent seasonal lows. Grade A nonfat dry milk continues to be weak (under $0.90 per pound). The export market remains tepid at best. The U.S. dollar, while retreating somewhat, remains historically high. Prices in the key grain and feed markets are at four year lows. Corn remains below $4 per bushel, soybean meal under $350 per ton, and alfalfa hay under $185 per ton. With this constellation of prices, it appears very likely that the USDA/FSA MPP program payments for May-June will be zero or only a few pennies. 

Using the current (6/02/2015) futures market price data on milk and feed input prices, the USDA Farm Services Agency Decision tool for MPP ( shows an anticipated May-June margin of $8.30/cwt. Anticipated margins for the remaining three calculation periods are: July-August ($9.49 per hundredweight), September-October ($10.41 per hundredweight) and November-December ($10.45 per hundredweight).… Continue reading

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Imminent House vote on TPA

With the U.S. House soon to take up Trade Promotion Authority (TPA) legislation, NPPC announced it would “key vote” lawmakers’ votes on the measure, which is vital to finalizing free trade agreements. (The Senate passed TPA May 23.)

Periodically, NPPC scores members of Congress on their votes on issues and legislation that are of paramount importance to the livelihoods of America’s pork producers. The scores then are made public so voters have the information when determining the candidate of their choice in the next election. TPA defines U.S. negotiating objectives and priorities for trade agreements and establishes consultation and notification requirements for the president to follow throughout the negotiation process. Once trade negotiators finalize a deal, Congress gets to review it and vote yes or no – without amendments – on it.

Congress has granted TPA to every president since 1974, with the most recent law being approved in August 2002 and expiring June 30, 2007.… Continue reading

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John Deere beefs up utility tractor performance with new 5E & 5ML models

New 4-cylinder and specialty models offer more in power, durability and operator comfort.

Like a boxer fighting above his weight class, the new four-cylinder 5E and 5ML Series Tractors from John Deere pack a lot of heavy-duty power and versatility for utility tractors of their size.

“We’ve taken our popular, market-proven 5 Series Utility Tractor lineup and added new models that make it even easier to perform more jobs on the property or around the farm, ranch or orchard,” says Brad Aldridge, 5 Series product marketing manager for John Deere. “These versatile 5E and 5ML Tractors combine durability with value and are the perfect choice for many types of customers.”

The new four-cylinder 5E Series Tractors are built for a variety of applications such as livestock feeding, haying operations, roadside mowing and property maintenance. The two new 5ML models are low-profile machines that are perfect for working in orchards, livestock barns and other environments with restricted heights.… Continue reading

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2015 study points to succession planning communication barriers

Over the years I have met with many farm families in barns, fields and around kitchen tables to discuss succession planning and all that it involves. These can sometimes be very stressful, difficult and emotional visits. Some families put off these discussions because the topic is one that many don’t like to consider. However, planning and preparation will be beneficial to all family members involved in the farm business.

Faculty at Penn State University, California State University and Old Dominion University published in the Journal of Extension the findings of a study they conducted of Pennsylvania farm families on the topic of farm succession planning. Below is a summary of the research findings.



In addition to growing concerns about how to meet the retirement needs of older farmers, it is disconcerting that few senior operators have decided how managerial control of the farm will be passed to a successor prior to their death.… Continue reading

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Organic checkoff proposal period extended

National Farmers Union (NFU) President Roger Johnson hailed the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) decision to extend the proposal period for the organic checkoff.

“We are very pleased that USDA is accepting additional viewpoints from the organic community,” Johnson said. “We believe it is in the best interest of organic family farmers and the future success and effectiveness of their checkoff that as many viewpoints and proposals as possible be solicited.”

USDA’s Agriculture Marketing Service initially received the proposal for an organic research and promotion program on May 12, 2015. The initial deadline for alternative or partial proposals was June 19, 2015; the deadline has now been extended to July 20, 2015.

Johnson noted that since this is a rather complex checkoff, farmers need additional time to review and submit proposals. And given the fact that for most organic farmers this is a very busy time of the year, the additional time is greatly appreciated.… Continue reading

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Current abundance does not assure long-term wheat food security

Near record production and higher beginning stocks that added to a comfortable level of world wheat supplies, got the lion’s share of attention in USDA’s first estimate of wheat supply and demand for marketing year 2015/16. Looking beyond the snapshot of today’s situation, however, there are trends and other information that could present unseen challenges — and demand new solutions.

Over the past few years, good conditions blessed the majority of the world’s wheat farmers. They produced record yields of 717 million metric tons (MMT) in 2013/14 and increased that to 726 MMT in 2014/15. USDA’s initial forecast for 2015/16 is down, but only to 719 MMT. The International Grains Council forecast is even less optimistic, with production at 708 MMT for 2015/16. The global stocks-to-use ratio of a 28% forecast by USDA matches the five-year average and adds comfort for buyers.

However, the trend in world demand is even more impressive.… Continue reading

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Head scab risk for wheat generally low

The last few wheat fields — mostly later maturing fields and fields in northern Ohio — are finishing up flowering this week. According to the forecasting system, the risk for head scab is low for these last fields that were flowering. Although it has rained through several crucial periods of risk for the disease, conditions have been relatively cool, which likely reduced the risk of the scab fungus infecting the wheat spikes.

During most of the flowering window for the 2015 season when the crop is most susceptible to infection, conditions have generally not been favorable for scab — either too dry or too cold. Scab develops best under moderate to warm temperatures and humid conditions.… Continue reading

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Ohio Soybean Council to elect five trustees

The Ohio Soybean Council (OSC) Board of Trustee elections will be held in five districts this summer.


Districts up for election


District 1               Fulton, Henry, Lucas, and Williams

District 2               Erie, Ottawa, Sandusky, and Wood

District 5               Allen, Hancock, and Putnam

District 9               Delaware, Marion, Morrow, and Union

District 13             Adams, Brown, Clermont, Clinton, Highland, and Warren


To be eligible for election to OSC, candidates must live in a county in the districts listed, be a soybean producer engaged in the growing of soybeans in the State of Ohio, who owns or shares the ownership and risk of loss of such soybeans at any time during the three year period immediately preceding November 15 of the current year.

Those eligible producers (spouses who jointly produce soybeans are considered to be a “family” and are considered to be one person) who have contributed to the soybean checkoff and have submitted a petition with the signatures of 15 eligible soybean producers who reside in the respective district shall be determined candidates for election.… Continue reading

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JD Equipment helping with Safety Town

JD Equipment continues its community involvement by donating $250 to the City of Hilliard Safety Town Program. Safety Town is a one-week course that focuses on teaching children safe practices both at school and at home. The curriculum includes: bicycle safety, pedestrian safety, school bus safety, fire safety, seat belt safety, 9-1-1 emergency calls, stranger danger and what to do if they find a gun. The children are instructed and practice how to cross the street safely. This program is geared to help children become comfortable around Law Enforcement and Fire Fighters.

Safety Town utilizes a realistic, child-sized town designed to provide a complete hands-on safety education for children entering kindergarten in the fall. Working traffic signals, miniature buildings, cross walks, and traffic provided by the children on tricycles help give the children the experience they need before they take their final walk on a real street with real traffic and signals escorted by police officers.… Continue reading

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Ohio Cattlemen’s Association to host beef industry update meetings

The planning for the new OCA Beef Industry Update Meeting series is well underway for the months of June through October. OCA Allied Industry Council member, Multimin USA, is the title sponsor of the meetings that will be hosted around the state. Their sponsorship will provide a steak dinner to all of the attendees at the meetings.

The program outline for each meeting will have a veterinarian discussion for the first half of the meeting followed by a complimentary beef dinner and concluding with an OCA membership, event and policy update.

Dates for upcoming meetings:

Tuesday, June 30 — Columbiana, Mahoning and Trumbull Counties, American Legion in Leetonia, 540 Main Street, Leetonia, OH 44431 at 6 p.m.

Wednesday, August 19 — Shelby County

Thursday, August 20 — Athens, Meigs and Washington Counties

Tuesday, September 8 — Carroll County

Thursday, September 10 — Knox County

Monday, October 5 — Morgan County

Contact Stephanie Sindel at 614-873-6736 or email beef@ohiobeef.orgContinue reading

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