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Ohio Cattlemen’s Association Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet Jan. 13

The Ohio Cattlemen’s Association (OCA) will be hosting their Annual Meeting and Awards Banquet on Jan. 13, 2024 in Columbus. OCA members are encouraged to attend and participate in discussions that will decide the association’s top priorities for the year.

The day will begin with lunch where guest speaker Todd Wilkinson, President of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA), will give an update on important NCBA priorities and programs. Wilkinson is a co-owner and operator of a commercial cow-calf operation alongside his son, Nick, in De Smet, South Dakota. He is also a co-owner of Redstone Feeders, family-owned cattle feeding and finishing operation as well as owns his own law-firm, Wilkinson & Schumacher where he has practiced law for more than 40 years, specializing in estate planning and agricultural law.

The Annual Meeting will begin after lunch where OCA members are encouraged to take an active role in their organization as they will set policy priorities for 2024 and be involved in important industry updates. … Continue reading

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Line speed trial extended

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) announced that it granted a 90-day extension for trials at six pork packing plants around the country with faster harvest line speeds. The harvest capacity facilitated by higher line speeds at the six trial plants represents over 3% of national capacity. Extending and making permanent this added capacity is a major priority for the National Pork Producers Council. 
In late 2019, a new USDA rule established for processing facilities the New Swine Inspection System (NSIS), which included a provision that allowed plants to determine their own line speeds based on their ability to maintain process control. In March 2021, a U.S. District Court vacated the provision, citing a lack of safety data. At NPPC’s urging, in November 2021, FSIS implemented a time-limited trial for six NSIS facilities to operate at increased slaughter line speeds for one year while collecting data to evaluate the impact of the faster speeds on worker safety.… Continue reading

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Who will go first to make things happen?

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

Moving soybeans via supply chains that utilize the Great Lakes need more exporters to utilize the system. At this time the stance of many exporters is that they will not use the Great Lakes/St. Lawrence Sea Way system until they see more investment in the system.  Who will make the first move to get the ball rolling is the big question. Recently the DeLong Company made an investment to expand their export capacity at Port Milwaukee. This was the first step to create momentum in a positive direction. The U.S. Maritime Administration responded to the DeLong investment with a grant of $9.27 million dollars to further enhance the system. The U.S. Maritime Administration is an agency under the supervision of the U.S. Department of Transportation. The U.S. Maritime Administration focuses on ways to enhance and improve U.S.… Continue reading

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Farm labor costs set to continue to increase

By Veronica Nye, senior economist for American Farm Bureau

In November, USDA-National Agricultural Statistics Service’s released the semi-annual Farm Labor Report (FLC). The report includes quarterly estimates of the number of hired workers, average hours worked per worker and average hourly wage rates. The report also provides an annual weighted average hourly wage rate for field workers, field and livestock workers combined, and all hired workers, based on the quarterly estimates. Of utmost importance to users of the H-2A visa program, the field and livestock workers’ combined wage rate for 2023 contained in the FLR becomes the Adverse Effect Wage Rate (AEWR) utilized in the H-2A program in 2024. 

So, while the rates don’t become official until they are released by the Department of Labor in the Federal Register, usually around mid-December, the rates published in the Federal Register are typically unchanged from what is published in the Farm Labor Report.… Continue reading

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Hear Ohio Ag Net on WKSD 99.7

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 WKSD-FM serving Paulding and surrounding counties. Tune in to 99.7 out of Van Wert to hear the Ohio Ag Net Monday-Friday at 5:34 a.m., 5:52 a.m., and 12:50 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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Surprisingly few changes in Dec. 8 USDA numbers

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Trade expectations: U.S. soybean exports and while U.S. soybean crush were both unchanged. That is a surprise. U.S. corn exports up 25 million bushels.

U.S. highlights

Few changes were expected. USDA follows the pattern of years past as  December corn and soybean production and yields mirror those of November. Corn 2023 production 15.234 billion bushels, yield 174.9. Soybean 2023 production 4.129 billion bushels, yield month 49.9.  U.S. corn exports for 2023-2024 were up 25 million bushels.      

Following the noon USDA report release, corn was up 1 cent, soybeans up 3 cents, and wheat  down 7 cents. Moments before the report was released, corn was up 2 cents, soybeans up 9 cents, and wheat down 3 cents.

U.S. 2023-2024 ending stocks: corn 2.131 billion bushels, last month 2.156 billion bushels; soybeans  million bushels, last month 245 million bushels; and wheat 659 million bushels, last month 684 million bushels. … Continue reading

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Ohio Farm Bureau Annual Meeting highlights

Farmland preservation and development pressure were just a few of the important topics discussed by the delegates at Ohio Farm Bureau’s 105th annual meeting this week. In all, 359 delegates representing all county Farm Bureaus participated in the debate and discussion.

“Our state policy development committee is made up of some of our state board members as well as local board members and they set the tone for what we talk about at annual meeting every year. They debate some of those topics in October and then the counties submit their policies and they debate those in November. Those are the policies that are on the floor at Annual Meeting and we’ve had some good discussions about issues affecting agriculture,” said Evan Callicoat, Ohio Farm Bureau director of state policy. “We talked about solar — that is definitely an issue out there in the counties right now. Many places around the state are dealing with those projects so debating that solar policy.… Continue reading

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Ohio farmers elected to national roles

Ohio soybean farmers Steve Reinhard and Scott Metzger were recently elected to national leadership positions. 

Reinhard is an Ohio Soybean Council (OSC) board member, from Crawford County. He was elected to lead the national United Soybean Board (USB) as its chair. Reinhard has served on USB since 2017 and previously served as treasurer and vice chair as well as chair of the Demand Action Team.

“Congratulations to Steve on his newly elected position,” said Jeff Magyar, OSC chairman, who farms in Ashtabula County. “He is the perfect candidate to lead the national soybean checkoff during a time when the soybean industry is full of opportunity.”

Reinhard farms 1,300 acres of soybeans, corn and wheat in Bucyrus. In addition to his position on USB, he serves on the OSC board of trustees, where he has previously served as chairman, vice chairman and treasurer. In addition to his roles with OSC and USB, Reinhard also represented Ohio on the Soy Transportation Coalition board of trustees.… Continue reading

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YAP State Committee members named by Ohio Farm Bureau

The Ohio Farm Bureau Federation has named the newest members of its Young Agricultural Professionals State Committee: Joe and Casey Everett of Shelby County, Mike Hannewald of Lucas County, John and Kacy Hummel of Franklin County and Emily Warnimont of Hancock County. Committee members are selected based on Farm Bureau involvement, leadership potential and community service.

The committee is composed of eight members or couples who suggest, develop and conduct activities that provide opportunities for young farmers and ag professionals to be more involved in Ohio Farm Bureau programs. Duties include planning the yearly YAP winter leadership conference and hosting Young Agricultural Professionals in a variety of in- and out-of-state events.

The Everetts are part of a corn and soybean operation with Joe’s dad, uncle and cousin. Casey is a reading specialist with Troy City Schools and also serves as Student Council adviser, while Joe farms full-time and works with Ohio Ag Net Communications as a marketing specialist.… Continue reading

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OCWGA annual meeting highlighted success in 2023

At the Ohio Corn & Wheat Growers Association Annual Meeting held in late November, several growers were elected to office. They were: 

  • Denny Vennekotter from Putnam County for District 3 seat
  • John Linder from Morrow County for District 4 seat
  • Sam Boyce from Richland County for an At-Large seat
  • Scott Ruck from Wayne County for an At-Large seat
  • Gary Wilson from Hancock County for an At-Large seat.

The event was an occasion to highlight the accomplishments of the year, and there were many. One highlight is the ongoing success with the Feed the World program that provides Ohio middle and high school educators with educational materials based on Ohio curriculum standards.

“This year I’m proud of the Feed the World Program. I think that’s a really good program we’ve been funding for the last several years,” said Clark Sheets, chairman of the Ohio Corn Marketing Program. “We’re doing some funding with research for vomitoxin and we’re trying to get some good information on that.… Continue reading

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Sustaining optimal body condition from fall calving to breeding season

By Kate Hornyak, Ohio State University Extension program coordinator, Delaware County

Maintaining optimal body condition in cattle from fall calving through to the breeding season is pivotal for the success of any beef operation. In Ohio, with its unique climate and agricultural landscape, this task can present unique challenges and opportunities. There are comprehensive strategies tailored to Ohio’s environment, helping cattle producers ensure their herds are in peak condition, promoting reproductive success and overall herd vitality.

During the fall, fluctuating temperatures and early frosts can impact the availability and quality of pasture for grazing, necessitating the need for supplementary feeding. Farmers must be vigilant to ensure that cattle have access to adequate nutrition as natural forage sources diminish. Additionally, wet conditions and heavy rainfall can lead to muddy and unsanitary living conditions, increasing the risk of disease and foot problems in cattle.

As winter arrives, the challenges intensify with the onset of freezing temperatures, snow, and ice.… Continue reading

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The Next Steps in SCN Management

By Laura Temple, The SCN Coalition

Many university extension programs offer soil testing for soybean cyst nematodes, or SCN, so that soybean farmers understand the potential threat buried in specific fields. However, Horacio Lopez-Nicora, assistant professor of soybean pathology and nematology at Ohio State University, has begun digging much deeper into soil samples submitted in Ohio.

“While we know SCN hurts soybean yields, we would like to understand more about how their populations change,” he says. “At the same time, a wide variety of other nematodes — both parasitic and free-living — reside alongside SCN in our soils. We want to learn more about those species, as well.”

Farmers throughout the state receive bags and instructions on how to collect soil samples during winter meetings, thanks to support from the Ohio Soybean Council. Lopez-Nicora says his team asks them to take soil samples both at planting and at harvest in both soybean and corn fields, along with yield estimates.… Continue reading

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Good days, great trees at Greig Christmas Tree Farm

By Matt Reese

Some days, Christmas tree farming can be pretty tough.

“You know, it’s the middle of the sales season — it’s busy, you’re constantly moving and we’re in the heart of the Snow Belt and the weather can definitely be a challenge. It can be pretty hard when you’re schlepping through a foot of snow out there working at half the speed you normally could,” said Jeff Grieg, who owns Greig Christmas Tree Farm in Ashtabula County with his brother, Doug. “But it’s a lot of fun and I don’t look at it as work. I grew up with it, so it’s what I do and that makes it really enjoyable. I was out there today and it was a little chilly, but it was a beautiful day. You’re at peace out there doing what you want to do and when you throw in the Christmas element of it in, it makes it a lot of fun.”… Continue reading

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OSU livestock judging team finishes strong in successful season

The Livestock Judging Team at the Ohio State University wrapped up its 2023 season at the North American International Livestock Exposition (NAILE) in Louisville. Seniors Ryan Michael, Morgan Price, Sarah Belmonte, Ellie Shaw, Dawson Osborn and Stephen Parthemore — all animal sciences majors — left NAILE as the 13th High Team in the senior college competition.

Other notable fall finishes for the team include second High Team overall (first in placings, second in reasons) at the Purdue Boilermaker Classic, third High Team (High Team in swine) at the Keystone International Livestock Exposition in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and 12th High Team overall at the American Royal in Kansas City.

Ryan Michael also placed in the top 20, earning the position of 19th High Individual overall with placings of 16th in cattle and 20th in swine.

Michael served as a key contributor to his team’s success throughout the season with multiple top 10 finishes, including third High Individual overall at the Purdue Boilermaker Classic and second High Individual overall at Keystone.… Continue reading

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Ohio Crop Performance Trials can improve farm profitability

By O. Ortez, R.J. Minyo, M.A. Lowe, D.G. Lohnes, L. Lindsey, A. Geyer, M.W. Hankinson, J. McCormick, Department of Horticulture and Crop Science College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences (CFAES), Ohio State University

The purpose of the Ohio Crop Performance Trials is to evaluate corn hybrids, soybean varieties, and wheat varieties for grain yield and other important agronomic characteristics. 

Results of the trials can assist farmers in selecting hybrids and varieties best suited to their farming operations and production environments and can complement recommendations made by seed companies and breeding programs. 

Seed companies marketing hybrids and varieties in Ohio are invited to enter their genetics in the crop performance test. An entry fee is charged to cover expenses. Each hybrid or variety entry is evaluated using at least three replications per site in a randomized complete block design. Trials are planted using small plot planters with GPS systems and harvested with specialized plot combines.… Continue reading

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