Featured News

Will we see a turnaround in corn prices?

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC 

Watching the corn market slide the last three weeks has been painful for producers. However, it feels a little too early for the corn market to pull back this much this fast. It seems possible the corn market could turn around like beans did in the fall.

Last September when beans were trading around $13.80, the trade was suggesting the U.S. bean export program may be in trouble due to low water levels and a slow export pace. Many market participants thought that beans would trade in a $13.50 to $14.50 range going forward because of concerns over Brazil’s large upcoming bean crop that could potentially make meeting USDA export estimates at the time more difficult. 

Two months later, Brazil was still on track to raise a record crop, and despite dry conditions in Argentina, it was still likely South America’s production would hit a new record.  Many… Continue reading

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Ohio Farmer Wins National Conservation Award

Nathan, Les, and Jerry Seiler

By the American Soybean Association

The Conservation Legacy Award is a national program designed to recognize the outstanding environmental and conservation achievements of soybean farmers, which in turn help produce more sustainable U.S. soybeans. The program is sponsored by ASA, BASF, Bayer, Nutrien, the United Soybean Board/Soy Checkoff and Valent USA.

Les Seiler began focusing on soil preservation in 1986, when he and his brother, Jerry, set aside conventional tillage practices and looked to conservation farming methods on their Ohio farm.

Now, more than 30 years later, the Seilers continue to make no till, grass waterways and filter strips, and planting cover crops routine components of their overall farm management plan.

“We have so much soil erosion because of poor soil health, and we can’t infiltrate water on the land anymore,” Seiler said. “We’ve seen the need to do something different besides conventional farming practices of moldboard plowing and a lot of tillage.”… Continue reading

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Bluhm named Farm Bureau OD

Samantha Bluhm of Bluffton has been named organization director for Allen, Paulding, Putnam and Van Wert counties.

Bluhm grew up on a beef cattle operation in Wauseon with a crop family farm in Norwalk. She was a member of 4-H for 11 years and in FFA for three years. She showed livestock at the county, state and national level in her youth and has been involved with Farm Bureau since birth.

Her past Farm Bureau experiences include the county presidents and Young Ag Professionals trip to Washington, D.C., the YAP Winter Leadership Experience, Ag Day at the Capital, county membership campaigns and more.

Bluhm graduated from Ohio State University in 2018. Most recently, she was a registered representative for Western & Southern Life and the agricultural teacher at Kalida High School. In 2020, Bluhm was nominated for Nationwide’s Golden Owl Award, which recognizes outstanding agricultural educators.… Continue reading

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Alex Lindsey named 2023 Ohio CCA of the Year

The Ohio Certified Crop Adviser (CCA) Program is honored to announce Dr. Alex J. Lindsey as the 2023 CCA of the Year. Lindsey is assistant professor of agronomy in the Department of Horticulture and Crop Science at The Ohio State University. 

“Alex Lindsey’s commitment to the CCA program, not only as a member and researcher, but as a mentor makes him deserving of this prestigious award, according to Greg McGlinch, farmer and educator, who nominated Lindsey for the award. “Alex’s method of teaching agronomic research and practices allows students and farmers to apply the methods on a field scale.” 

“Dr. Alex J. Lindsey has made a tremendous impact by nurturing countless young agronomists in becoming Certified Crop Advisers through applied and scenario-based agronomic teaching methods for years,” said Kevin Otte, chairman of the Ohio CCA board. “His dedication to the industry through teaching and research, and also through his service on multiple boards and committees supporting Ohio agriculture, agronomic endeavors, college students and high school/agriculture teachers certainly attest to his passion and dedication in serving the agricultural industry and Ohio’s farmers.… Continue reading

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Ohio’s Country Journal & Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 292 | From Orlando to Washington and everywhere in between

In the 291st episode of the Ohio Ag Net Podcast, Matt Reese and Dusty Sonnenberg sit down with Putnam County farmer Jeff Duling, president of the Ohio Federation of Soil and Water Conservation Districts. They preview the upcoming Conservation Tillage and Technology Conference, talk the Haney test for soil health, and much more.

From there, the action doesn’t stop with several interviews following a roundtable with farmers and Ohio ag leaders in East Palestine, looking ahead with a positive perspective after the train derailment and subsequent fire in early February that grabbed world headlines. Brianna Gwirtz talks with Brian Baldridge, director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture, John Patterson of the Ohio Farm Service Agency, State Veterinarian Dr. Dennis Summers, and local farmer Austin Chamberlain.

Following those chats, Matt talks with Jerry Seiler about the Seiler family winning the American Soybean Association National Conservation Legacy Award.

To wrap it up, Joel hears from a roundtable of Ohio Farm Bureau county presidents recapping their trip to Washington D.C.… Continue reading

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Farm Bill top of mind for Farm Bureau county leaders in D.C.

Ohio Farm Bureau leaders from around the state gathered in Washington D.C. for the 2023 County Presidents’ Trip in mid-March. Leading conversation was the Farm Bill, back up for its five-year update. Ohio Ag Net’s Joel Penhorwood spoke with Ohio Farm Bureau’s Brandon Kern, along with Ashland County Farm Bureau President Jake Kline on that and other topics in this video. We also hear from a variety of lawmakers that addressed the group, with concerns regarding agriculture, including the Farm Bill, crop insurance, East Palestine, and more.… Continue reading

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Ohio NRCS EQIP-IRA funding now available

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Ohio Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) is accepting applications for Environmental Quality Incentives Program — Inflation Reduction Act (EQIP-IRA) funding. These funds expand financial and technical assistance to landowners and producers advancing conservation practices targeting climate mitigation on their land. Applications must be received by April 23, 2023 to be eligible for Fiscal Year 2023 funding.

Nationally, the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) provides an additional $19.5 billion over five years for climate smart agriculture through several of the conservation programs that NRCS implements. The Environmental Quality Incentives Program is NRCS’ flagship conservation program that helps farmers, ranchers and forest landowners integrate conservation into working lands. In Ohio, an additional $3.3 million in financial assistance has been made available to Ohio landowners through EQIP-IRA in Fiscal Year 2023. 

EQIP-IRA is designed to help farmers and private landowners apply conservation measures that focus on carbon sequestration, greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency and soil health.… Continue reading

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Beagle Brigade Act of 2023 reintroduced

The National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) applauds the reintroduction of the Beagle Brigade Act of 2023. This legislation would provide congressional authority to the United States Department of Agriculture’s National Detector Dog Training Center — a vital program in training agricultural canine teams that work daily to prevent foreign animal and plant diseases from entering the United States. 
“Safe and reliable food production is critical to the United States’ continued national and economic security,” said Terry Wolters, NPPC president and owner of Stoney Creek Farms in Pipestone, Minnesota. “As African swine fever continues to plague the Dominican Republic and Haiti, strengthening early detection capabilities at our U.S. borders is more important than ever.” 
The “Beagle Brigade” serves as the first line of defense for early detection at the nation’s ports of entry and is critical in keeping foreign animal diseases, like African swine fever, out of the United States.… Continue reading

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Nine graduate 2023 OABA LAUNCH program

Hosted by the Ohio AgriBusiness Association, in partnership with Shift-ology Communication, the LAUNCH program is geared to help Ohio agribusinesses Elevate People, Elevate Ideas and Elevate the Industry. Participants were identified by their companies as emerging agribusiness leaders:  individuals with a desire to meet higher level goals than the scope of their current positions, who seek to rise within their companies.

The nine OABA member graduates who successfully completed the 2023 LAUNCH program include:

  • Jordan Beck, Pettisville Grain Company
  • Blair Bennis, Corteva Agriscience
  • Alexis Busack, Luckey Farmers Inc.
  • Michael Karg, Luckey Farmers Inc.
  • Anton Kilburn, Global Impact STEM Academy
  • Tyler Miller, Cargill
  • Dan Smith, The Andersons
  • Reannen Sollars, Centerra Co-op
  • Grace Walter, Helena Agri-Enterprises

“With a focus on leadership development, the LAUNCH program equips today’s agricultural leaders with the confidence and tools they need to take the next steps in their careers, while also helping them identify and pursue opportunities that will advance their career goals,” said Chris Henney, OABA president and CEO.… Continue reading

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East Palestine: What’s next for area farmers?

By Brianna Gwirtz, OCJ field reporter

It’s been over a month since 38 train cars carrying hazardous materials derailed in East Palestine but farmers in the area are still left with questions and concerns. On March 9, the same day the CEO of Norfolk Southern testified before the Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works, a group of farmers and public officials gathered in a church basement in Salem, Ohio to receive updates and discuss worries. 

Following the controlled chemical release and burn, the Environmental Protection Agency, Ohio Department of Agriculture, Ohio State University Extension, the Columbiana Soil and Water Conservation District and other agricultural agencies have been actively monitoring the situation. Ensuring the food supply remains safe is of utmost importance.

Brian Baldrige, Director of the Ohio Department of Agriculture, summarized the efforts that ODA has already taken to support farmers. 

“The Department of Agriculture touches every corner of the state and every facet of the agricultural industry.… Continue reading

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Cover crop weed control

By James Hoorman, Hoorman Soil Health Services

A new study by Purdue University, Dr. Bill Johnson shows the benefits of cover crops for weed control.  Cover crops are known to control grasses and marestail, but Dr. Johnson wanted to document other weed control benefits.  For example, can you control weeds with out residual herbicides?  What other weeds do cover crops control? 

Dr. Johnson found residual herbicides may not be needed if crop residue is high enough to suppress marestail and annual grasses weeds.  For other broadleaf weeds, the cover crop residue was not enough to suppress broadleaf weeds. The cover crops plus residual herbicides were 100% effective at controlling weeds in his trials.  Cocklebur was a problem weed which required the full rate of herbicide plus the cover crop residue to control it.

Dr. Johnson discovered several other important weed facts about cover crops.  Planting green or planting soybeans into cereal rye later had a much higher success rate than terminating the cover crop early. … Continue reading

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USDA announces $29 million to increase American-made fertilizer production

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Secretary Tom Vilsack announced at Commodity Classic in Orlando that the Department received $3 billion in applications from more than 350 independent businesses from 47 states and 2 territories for the first two rounds of a new grant program to add innovative domestic fertilizer production capacity.

USDA also announced the first $29 million in grant offers under the first round that focused on projects that can come online in the near term. The grants will help independent businesses increase production of American-made fertilizer, which will spur competition, give U.S. farmers more choices and fairer prices and reduce dependence on unreliable foreign sources like Russia and Belarus. Vilsack made the announcement at the 2023 Commodity Classic, the same event where he first unveiled the program a year earlier.

“I know that increased costs for fertilizer and other inputs have put a strain on farmers and cut into the bottom line,” Vilsack said.… Continue reading

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Seiler named National Conservation Legacy Award winner

Les Seiler from Fayette in Fulton County was named the National Conservation Legacy Award winner at the annual American Soybean Association Awards Celebration event during Commodity Classic on March 10, 2023. 

At the event, four regional winners were recognized in the extremely competitive program and Seiler was announced as the overall national winner. The National Conservation Legacy Award is designed to recognize the outstanding environmental and conservation achievements of soybean farmers, which help produce more sustainable U.S. soybeans. A national selection committee, composed of soybean farmers, conservationists, agronomists and natural resource professionals, evaluated nominations based on each farmer’s environmental and economic program. The program is sponsored by ASA, BASF, Bayer, Nutrien, the United Soybean Board/Soy Checkoff and Valent USA.

Seiler Farms is part of the Western Lake Erie Basin, where Les and his brother, Jerry, have implemented a suite of farming practices to help mitigate soil loss and maximize soil health.… Continue reading

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AUDIO: Ohio Farm Bureau County Presidents recap trip to Washington D.C.

The annual Ohio Farm Bureau County Presidents’ Trip to Washington D.C. took place this week. Farmer leaders from around the Buckeye state had time to learn about the latest issues potentially impacting their farms, along with getting time to discuss face-to-face with lawmakers the concerns facing their operations and communities. While the wide range of topics covered is nearly impossible to fully summarize, in this audio, we gathered a together an eclectic group of the farmers to help recap the three days in our nation’s capitol through conversation.

Guests include Mike Plotner of Union County, John Hummel of Franklin and Fairfield Counties, Mike Hannewald of Lucas County, Amanda Barndt of Wood County, Ryan Mohr of Van Wert County, Jacob Wuebker of Darke County, Kreig Smail of Miami County, Ryan Hiser of Fayette County, Abram Klopfenstein of Paulding County, Richard Maxwell of Perry County, Kyle Stockton of Allen County, and Joe Everett of Shelby County.… Continue reading

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U.S. soy’s well-earned reputation for sustainability

By Kerrey Kerr-Enskat

U.S. soybean farmers are widely recognized for their innovative solutions to the challenge of a changing climate. Through their commitment to sustainable agriculture, they are managing to produce more with fewer resources while at the same time supporting a healthy society and preserving the planet. As a result, U.S. Soy has the lowest carbon footprint, including land use change, compared with soy of other origins(1).

This progress is being recognized globally, with an increasing number of food companies adopting the Sustainable U.S. Soy (SUSS) label as they shift procurement towards more sustainable supply chains. The SUSS logo is currently featured on more than 1,000 SKUs from 70 companies across the Americas, Greater China, Northeast Asia, and Southeast Asia.

We saw a great example of this in late 2022 when Ichiban soymilk started featuring the Sustainable U.S. Soy logo served on non-stop Vietnam Airlines flights from Ho Chi Minh City to San Francisco.… Continue reading

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Is drainage water recycling for you?

By Vinayak Shedekar and Elizabeth Schwab, The Ohio State University

The February issue of Ohio’s Country Journal featured an article by Greg LaBarge on “What is drainage water recycling?” (https://ocj.com/2023/02/what-is-drainage-water-recycling/). I decided to continue this conversation, especially for those who may have started wondering what it would take to implement drainage water recycling (DWR) and irrigation for field crops. Let’s try and address some additional questions on DWR. 

What sites are suitable for drainage water recycling? The short answer is: a site that can benefit from both improved drainage and supplemental irrigation. If you know how to access the USDA-NRCS’s Web Soil Survey, you can look up the suitability of the field’s soils for drainage as well as irrigation. The surface topography and the layout of the field’s subsurface drainage system will play an important role in deciding the location of the storage pond, as well as the appropriate irrigation method (subirrigation versus overhead or drip). … Continue reading

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How much can I afford to get my pasture right?

By Andrew Griffith, Assistant Professor, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Tennessee

How much can I afford to pay to get my pastures right?

My question back is if a person can afford NOT to get their pastures in good shape. Over the past several years, there have been many pastures where broomsedge has become the dominant specie or where blackberries or other woody species have become invasive and reduce forage production. Anything that reduces forage production then reduces carrying capacity and thus revenue production.

This brings back the question if a person can afford not to improve their pastures. There are several methods of improving pasture. Some methods are more capital intensive while other methods may take a little more time. Regardless, producers should consider their pasture conditions and determine if pasture renovation of some sort is appropriate.

Regardless of which route a person chooses to renovate pasture, it will come at a cost.… Continue reading

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Drones for spraying pesticides

By Erdal Ozkan, Ohio State University Extension

Traditionally, aerial spraying of pesticides has been done using conventional fixed-wing aircraft or helicopters with a pilot onboard. However, this is changing. Small, remotely piloted aircraft are being used to apply pesticides around the world, especially in Southeast Asia. For example, about 30% of all agricultural spraying in South Korea, and about 40% of Japan’s rice crop, is sprayed using drones. In contrast, drone spraying is in its infancy in the United States, but interest in this technology from pesticide applicators is steadily increasing.

A variety of names and the acronyms are associated with remotely piloted aircraft. Most used ones are: Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV) and Unmanned Aerial System (UAS). However, the name used most commonly by the general public is “drone.” Drones entered the agriculture scene initially for non-spraying applications, such as crop and field-condition data collection to increase profitability in crop production. Drones successfully and effectively monitor plant growth by collecting and delivering real-time data from the moment of plant emergence to harvest.… Continue reading

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