Featured News

2023 Pre-Plant Anhydrous Cab Cam | Jed Bower, Fayette County

Join Ohio Ag Net’s Dusty Sonnenberg as we take a ride in the cab of Fairfield County farmer Jed Bower’s tractor and get an insider’s look at his pre-planting process in this Pre-Plant Anhydrous Cab Cam. We talk the benefits and challenges of using anhydrous ammonia as a fertilizer, and gain valuable insights into the practices for applying it safely and efficiently as a pre-plant addition.

The 2023 Cab Cam series is brought to you by Precision Agri Services Inc. More about them at www.precisionagriservices.com.… Continue reading

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Early season pasture management

 By Christine Gelley, Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator, Noble County OSU Extension

Most pastures are looking lush and green again. Thanks to some perfect temperature days, our cool-season pasture grasses are growing well. Grazing animals seem pleased to have some fresh greens and managers certainly are relieved to see the landscape change from dreary to dreamy again.

With the good that the spring flush of growth brings, there are also some concerns that we shouldn’t forget in the midst of the joy. Now is the time that grass tetany may become a problem and bloat can be an issue too in some circumstances. We also need to continue to consider the health of our forage and soils.


  • Actively growing pastures still need rest between grazing cycles. Allowing pastures to rest can help decrease damage to the plant roots from over grazing and reduce pugging of the field due to heavy animal traffic when the ground is still soft.
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Beekman named CFO of Ohio Farm Bureau

Jodi Beekman of Centerburg has been named chief financial officer for Ohio Farm Bureau Federation.

In her role, Beekman will be responsible for coordinating the accounting and finance of the organization, subsidiary companies and management contracts. She will provide oversight for the organization as it relates to tax filing on federal, state and local levels and oversee the financial resources of the organization as it relates to investments and daily cash management. 

Beekman will work with the organization’s current CFO Irene Messmer for a period of time before taking sole responsibility for her new position. Messmer plans to retire at the end of May 2024.

Prior to joining Farm Bureau, Beekman spent the previous two years as senior vice president finance and operations at Children’s Hunger Alliance and 13 years as vice president of finance and administration at Experience Columbus. 

Beekman received her bachelor’s degree in accounting from Miami University in Oxford, Ohio and is a certified public accountant.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Beginning Farmer Tax Credit now available

By Matt Reese

Of numerous challenges for the future of Ohio’s farms, one continues to be the barriers of entry for young farmers with extremely high startup costs, need for an extensive knowledge base and limited on-farm opportunities. 

“It’s been difficult for younger people to get into the industry, especially if they have not come from a farm,” said Evan Callicoat, director of state policy for Ohio Farm Bureau. “We all know that farming is a very capital-intensive industry and that often comes with a very large price tag, so it can often be hard to get passed that barrier of entry.”

After years of debate in the legislature, Ohio now has a Beginning Farmer Tax Credit available to help address this challenge. In April of 2022, House Bill 95 was signed into law by Governor Mike DeWine. The law establishes an income tax credit for beginning farmers who participate in a financial management program.… Continue reading

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Early planting priority: Corn or soybeans?

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

At least on some farms, there has been a shift in recent years prioritizing planting soybeans first. In a few conversations that were part of the 2022 Ohio Crop Tour, it was suggested that planting soybeans earlier may have paid off last year.

“The early planted beans look good and the later beans are just so-so. There has been more of a push lately to plant your soybeans first, or at least earlier. This year may be an example of that working out,” said Grant Davis, Agriculture and Natural Resources Educator with Ohio State University Extension in Champaign County after sampling fields for the 2022 Virtual Crop Tour. “A lot of this later planted corn looks pretty good where the later planted beans don’t necessarily. I think there may be greater upside potential for planting beans earlier if you get the opportunity and maybe, if it comes down to it, push the corn back if you have to.… Continue reading

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Two-rate nitrogen trial

By Greg LaBarge, CCA, Ohio State University Extension

Ohio’s corn nitrogen recommendation tool is the Corn Nitrogen Rate Calculator (https://www.cornnratecalc.org/). The Ohio database has over 300 trials where four or more rates were applied to understand nitrogen response over various soils, hybrids, and weather conditions. However, questions still exist on how the Maximum Return to Nitrogen (MRTN) rate affects yield and profitability on individual farms. Therefore, we propose a simple two-rate trial that compares the MRTN rate to a rate 50 pounds higher to check the yield and profit performance of the MRTN tool. If you use a nitrogen rate higher than the MRTN rate, we encourage you to use that rate compared to the lower MRTN rate.

Study basics

  • We recommend a minimum of two nitrogen rates replicated no less than three times. 
  • The total N rate (MRTN and MRTN +50) should include all N applied regardless of source (liquid or dry) or timings (Preplant, at-plant, sidedress).
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Ohio State Fair scholarships available

In an effort to recognize the quality youth of Ohio, and to help those interested in furthering their education, the Ohio Expositions Commission has established a Scholarship Program for Ohio State Fair participants. The Ohio State Fair Scholarship Application deadline is May 1.

The purpose of these scholarships is to assist high school juniors and seniors and graduates who are continuing their education at an accredited institution in an under graduate course of study in any field.

Those interested can find the information and apply online at Scholarships (ohiostatefair.com).… Continue reading

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Brown introduces Local Farms and Food Act

By Dusty Sonnenberg, Ohio Ag Net

Based on feedback from Ohio farmers, U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-OH) is pushing for legislation to make it easier to sell farm products locally, improving and updating existing farm bill programs. 

“Leading up to every farm bill we hold roundtables around the state to hear what Ohio farmers need and in ‘17 and ‘18 at every event I heard a similar message: Ohio’s farmers want to find new markets for their products. They have trouble connecting with Ohio families who always prefer buying fresh, locally grown food,” Brown said in a press conference. “So we fought to include the Local Farms Act in the 2018 farm bill to make it easier for farmers to feed their communities and for customers to buy local food and farm products. We’ve also created the Local Agriculture Market Program(LAMP) program which provides permanent funding to help farmers sell their products direct to consumers to create rural jobs and to invest in local and regional food economies.… Continue reading

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Spring market observations

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC 

May corn finished mid-April strong. Prices have not been as high since late February. Some global announcements contributed to this rally, including China’s buying of more U.S. old crop corn and Russia indicating they may not renew the Ukraine grain deal next month. 

Looking forward there are still some additional factors indicating old crop corn futures values may still be too low.

End user needs for the next few months

The May corn contract is gaining on the July contract. This suggests that end users are aggressively looking for corn now to meet their summer needs. Plus, basis values have been increasing the last few weeks too, incentivizing grain movement sooner than later. End users in the US seem to have good coverage on for April and May. However, it seems that they do not have much covered for June, July, and August. 

Limited supply in storage

Since harvest, the market has not really incentivized commercial elevators to hold grain.… Continue reading

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Don’t let weeds hold back crop potential

By Amanda Fruland, AgReliant Genetics and Cory Prosser, LG Seeds Agronomist

wetter spring outlook for some areas of the Midwest has farmers eying the calendar, but timely planting isn’t their only concern. “A good spring burndown program with some residual control will be extremely important, as a wet spring could result in some weed-ridden fields,” says LG Seeds Agronomist Corey Prosser.   

A burndown in the spring is popular in Prosser’s Ohio, where no-till and cover crop acres are common. “The pressure we’ve had the last couple of years from waterhemp, Palmer amaranth, giant ragweed and some grasses have made spring burndown a necessity,” he says. Controlling weeds mitigates stress on corn and soybeans and prevents weeds from tying up nutrients. 

Drawing on his experience in the retail space, Prosser shares tips for getting the most out of spring burndown and preventing resistance battles down the road.  

#1. Know your chemistry
“For good, prolonged control, farmers should take a systematic approach with multiple herbicides and modes of action,” Prosser says.… Continue reading

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Camp Canopy schedule released for 2023

The Ohio Forestry Association Foundation has released its Camp Canopy schedule for June 11-16, 2023, at Ohio FFA Camp Muskingum. Registration is open to students who have completed eighth grade through graduating high school seniors.

“We are excited to teach our campers wildlife management tools like trapping and banding this year,” said Marne Titchenell, wildlife program director for OSU Extension and camp co-director. “Wildlife biologists have historically used these tools to study wildlife, and they are still critical for managing species and habitat.” 

Campers will also explore forestry and wildlife topics like Ohio tree identification, insects, silviculture, amphibians, and how the first native residents of Ohio hunted and managed forests. See the detailed schedule here.

Nearly $8,000 in scholarships were awarded to campers pursuing a degree in forestry, wildlife, or environmental science in 2022. Many campers have discovered their passion at Camp Canopy and pursued degrees and careers in these areas.… Continue reading

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Looker joins Ohio Farm Bureau team

Erica Looker of Edison, Ohio, has been named administrative assistant, organization, for Ohio Farm Bureau.

Looker was raised in a family of farmers and currently lives on a small livestock operation with her husband, Heath, and two daughters, Olivia and Olesia, where they raise pigs and sheep. Looker grew up active in 4-H and FFA. Prior to joining Ohio Farm Bureau, Looker spent more than 20 years in the healthcare industry, starting as medical assistant and ascending to practice management. She also has worked as a data quality analyst. … Continue reading

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Pork industry economic update

The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) released its second quarter pork industry economic update that provides a snapshot of top pork industry issues, current trends, and market conditions impacting pig farmers. 
2023 Q2 key takeaways include:

  • Pork production increased 2.3% through the first quarter, with the USDA now projecting a 1.4% annual increase in pork production in 2023.
  • Retail, wholesale, and farm level prices show year-over-year decline.
  • Pork and variety meat exports gained momentum in Q1.
  • From September 2021 to 2022, the total value of wages paid to workers on U.S. pig farms increased 12.1%, while the number of workers declined by 0.4%.
  • Pork producer returns for the remainder of 2023 will be influenced by various factors, including domestic and export pork demand and input prices.

“The United States is a worldwide leader in pork production and a significant contributor to the U.S. economy,” said Duane Stateler, NPPC vice president and pork producer from Ohio.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 297 | Get the Dirt on Ethanol, Planting, and Hunger

On this week’s podcast Matt and Dusty sit down to talk with the folks at Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation. They visit with Janelle Mead and Kris Swartz to discuss the conservation practices farmers are implanting within Ohio. H2Ohio is also a project OFSWC works closely with, and Janelle and Kris talk about the future of this program and possible expansion.  

Also, Dale visits with Farm Credit Mid America in Cambridge discussing the Fight the Hunger, Stock the Trailer campaign. Tom Verry with Clean Fuels Alliance America talks with Dusty about renewables and the growing demand. Lastly, Joel stops in to do a Cab Cam with Mike Elsner as he plants early soybeans. All this and more on this week’s podcast!

00:00 Intro and OCJ/OAN Staff Update

05:48 Farm Credit Mid-America – Fight the Hunger, Stock the Trailer campaign

13:13 Tom Verry – Clean Fuels Alliance America

16:54 Mike Elsner – Cab Cam

24:37 Back with OFSWC… Continue reading

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The importance of re-visiting cashflow and collections

By Brian Ravencraft

Are you looking to stabilize the financial health of your business? Do you wish your cash flow was more consistent? Reviewing and revamping your billing and collection efforts is the first step to achieving these goals. 

A good lens to look through first is the one that focuses on the things you can control, such as quality of your products or services, and the efficiency of order fulfillment and distribution processes. All these elements can significantly impact collections. You give customers an excuse not to pay when an order arrives damaged, late, or not at all. Other mistakes include incorrectly billing a customer or failing to deliver on promised discounts or special offers.

We are all human and mistakes happen, but make sure you resolve billing mistakes quickly and ask customers to pay any portion of the bill they’re not disputing. Once the matter is resolved and the product or service has been delivered, ask the customer to pay off the bill.… Continue reading

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Wheat Yield Contest deadline May 15

The Ohio and National Wheat Yield Contest entries are due by May 15. To enter, go to https://yieldcontest.wheatfoundation.org/.

If you need assistance, contact Brad Moffitt at the Ohio Corn and Wheat Growers Association office: bmoffitt@ohiocornandwheat.org or via phone at 614-530-1957.

Last year’s state winner was David Lutz from Trumbull County with 136.98 bushels per acre.  David won a free lease on a J&M Seed Tender. Kent Edwards from Erie County was Ohio’s wheat yield contest runner-up with 135.8 bushels per acre. Kent won BASF Fungicide.

Wheat growers and seed companies are encouraged to enter the contest. By registering for the national contest, you are automatically entered in the Ohio contest. We are looking forward to another great year for Ohio wheat yields.  

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Beautiful week allows for field work

Last week’s unseasonably warm temperatures and minimal precipitation supported soil dry-down, encouraging many farmers to return to the fields, according to the USDA NASS, Great Lakes Regional Field Office. Significant soil evaporation was facilitated by last week’s abnormally warm and dry days. Topsoil moisture conditions were rated 1% very short, 4% short, 85% adequate, and 10% surplus. Statewide, the average temperature for the week ending on April 16 was 60.0 degrees, 10.9 degrees above normal. Weather stations recorded an average of 0.12 inches of precipitation, 0.70 inches below average. There were 4.9 days suitable for fieldwork during the week ending April 16.

Oat progress surged to 41% planted and 5% emerged. Winter wheat was 44%
jointed and winter wheat condition was rated 63% good to excellent, an increase of 1 point from last week. Favorable weather made spring planting preparation possible across the State. Fieldwork included fertilizer application, spraying cover crops, tillage, and tile repair.… Continue reading

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Students learn about making Soy Biodiesel through GrowNextGen

Rachel Sanders, Science Instructor, Senior Capstone Advisor and FFA Advisor at Global Impact STEM Academy, taught her 11th grade students about making Soy Biodiesel through the GrowNextGen program. Pictured are two of her 11th grade students – Riley Champ and Bridget Capper. This is part of the GrowNextGen program is funded by Ohio Soybean Farmers and their checkoff. Learn more at www.soyohio.org.… Continue reading

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When is the Best Time to Plant Soybeans?

By Dusty Sonnenberg, CCA, Field Leader, a project of the Ohio’s Soybean Farmers and their check-off.

When is the best time to plant soybeans?  That is a very common question this time of year. The answer is quite simple…it depends. A lot of discussion and research is being conducted into which crop to plant first between corn and soybeans, but the question still remains, “when?”. Ultimately, the goal of planting early is to reach canopy closure earlier and maximize the amount of sunlight that can be captured by the plants throughout the season.

When planting soybeans, the goal is to put them in a position to maximize their genetic potential. In the past, the rule of thumb was to plant soybeans when the soil temperature was 50 degrees Fahrenheit at a depth of 1 – 1 ½ inches and into moisture. If the soybean is planted into dry soil, then nothing will happen until it receives adequate moisture.… Continue reading

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Wetlands habitat stamp a winner

By Dan Armitage, Buckeye Sportsman

Sam Timm’s painting of an American wigeon pair was selected as the winner of the recent 2023 Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp Design Competition. Timm’s painting will be displayed on the Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp that is issued in 2024. A panel of five judges selected Timm’s artwork from a field of nine original pieces of art. Timm, from Wisconsin, is a two-time winner of the competition, most recently in 1992. Second place was awarded to Diane Ford of Maryland for a painting of gadwalls.

The Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp program has raised more than $11 million for wetland conservation since 1982. Proceeds from stamp sales help fund vital wetland habitat restoration projects in Ohio. Those projects have restored or enhanced thousands of acres of waterfowl habitat. These habitats are important to many resident wildlife species, including state-endangered trumpeter swans, wetland birds, amphibians, and migratory species.

The Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp is $15 and is required for anyone 18 years or older hunting waterfowl and migratory birds in the Buckeye State.… Continue reading

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