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Belmont County Farm Bureau tackles local hunger issues

By Matt Reese

A hungry child is hard to stomach.

It is hard to imagine in today’s society of excess and plenty that there are people — especially children — who regularly do not get enough food to meet basic nutritional needs. Yet, in every corner of Ohio, it is far too easy to find hungry children. Nationally, more than 13 million children live in food insecure homes and one in five children does not get the food they need every day. Three out of four teachers report that there are children in their classrooms who regularly come to school hungry.

The Belmont County Farm Bureau decided to tackle this problem head on in their corner of the state by cooperating with local efforts to provide food to children in need through county schools. Dairy farmer Devin Cain is helping coordinate the program.

“I had the privilege of going to Texas last year with DFA, our local milk co-op.… Continue reading

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Overcoming challenges during planting | Andy Detwiler, Champaign Co. | 2019 Spring Cab Cam

Andy Detwiler of Champaign County has a story and background in agriculture more unique than most. He has spent a life in farming without the use of his arms after losing them in a farming accident at a very young age. He has since become an inspiration to others in his local community and around the world by not letting anything get in his way, including a difficult planting season. Ohio Ag Net’s Joel Penhorwood caught up with Detwiler Thursday evening ahead of the overnight rain storms as he was rushing to get in corn in the well-drained soils near Urbana.

Want to learn more about Andy? Check out his YouTube page, the Harmless Farmer, at this link.Continue reading

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How did Jon Scheve average over $4 2018 corn?

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

On 4/23/19, when the corn board was in free-fall, I priced my remaining 2018 crop on futures. I didn’t set a cash price, and instead I was waiting for a higher basis. I received $3.61 against July futures on the remaining 54% of my ’18 crop I still had unpriced.

Why sell futures now?

There were several reasons.

  • I was concerned with how much corn prices had fallen already.
  • It was apparent to the market there was too much U.S. and global corn supply.
  • I’m only 10% sold for my 2019 corn and have no 2020 sales.
  • The risk of African swine fever appearing in the U.S. is always present.
  • There is unknown trade risk with China or even if NAFTA 2.0 gets signed.
  • On 4/23/19 forecasts indicated that most of the Corn Belt would have a 15-day window of good weather to plant.
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2019 Spraying Cab Cam | John Davis, Delaware County

While fieldwork in Ohio remains scarce, one unique setup in Delaware County is busy at work. The John Deere Gator of farmer John Davis is braving the mud, covering some much-needed ground with his custom sprayer setup. Davis’ Gator offers not only a sealed cab but also a precision spray system complete with auto-steer and more. He says though they’ve used the setup in previous years, it is truly proving its worth this year, able to cover hundreds of acres a day over fields wetter than most. Ohio Ag Net’s Joel Penhorwood has more in this cab cam, thanks to Homan, Inc.… Continue reading

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Cattle battle goes to federal court

By Leisa Boley Hellwarth, a dairy farmer and attorney near Celina

David sued Goliath in federal court in Chicago on April 23, 2019, alleging violations of U.S. antitrust laws, the Packers & Stockyards Act and the Commodity Exchange Act. Actually David is R-CALF-USA (Ranchers-Cattlemen Action Legal Fund United Stockgrowers of America), a national non-profit organization that represents U.S. cattle and sheep producers on domestic and international trade and marketing issues. Plaintiffs also include four cattle feeding ranchers from Iowa, Nebraska, Kansas and Wyoming.

Goliath is the Big 4: Tyson, Cargill, JBS and National Beef. These four defendants collectively purchase and process more than 80% of the fed cattle in the U.S. annually.

David’s slingshot is a federal class action. The complaint describes two classes purportedly harmed by actions of the Big 4: cattle producers who sold fed cattle to any of the Big 4 from January 2015 to the present; and traders who transacted live cattle futures or options contracts on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME) from January 2015 to the present.… Continue reading

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Dairy goat numbers on the rise in Ohio and around the country

By Matt Reese

There is no doubt about it. Baby goats are cute. They are also very trendy.

Baby goats have exploded in popularity in recent years for their charming antics and apparent appeal to certain demographics when they are wearing little goat onesies online. Videos attracting hundreds of thousands of viewers feature baby goats tormenting other livestock, jumping about on playground equipment, wearing bizarre articles of clothing, sharing living quarters with humans, and even eating waffles. And, goat yoga? Yup, it really exists.

National dairy goat interest is clearly being driven to some degree by the cute baby goat obsession, but legitimate markets for dairy goat products continue to grow on their own merits. Goat cheese is an increasingly popular foodie trend and can be found in upscale restaurants everywhere and the lower lactose milk from goats is gaining favor in the United States as well.

The newly released 2017 Census of Agriculture data recently quantified this increasing dairy goat popularity.… Continue reading

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Will prevented planting play into markets?

By Jon Scheve, Superior Feed Ingredients, LLC

Friday’s USDA report confirmed what the market already knew. Near perfect growing conditions last year in the highest producing areas around the world has generated too much corn and soybean supply in the U.S and globally. Unfortunately, due to problems with the African Swine Fever in Asia and the China trade war, demand has decreased. And, it’s unlikely either will be resolved before the end of the year.

Right now, the new crop market is likely overvalued, especially if most areas are planted on time and trend line yields are produced. But the big variable now is weather. Forecasts for the Dakotas and the eastern Corn Belt show a possible break in rain this week, but more rain is expected next weekend. This may mean farmers in those areas will wait for better planting conditions or take prevent plant. The Dakotas only have until May 25, and the eastern Corn Belt until June 5, before they have to declare if they are taking prevent plant on corn.… Continue reading

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Ohio Ag Net Podcast | Ep. 105 | An ode to opossums, tariffs, and prevent plant

The 105th episode of the Ohio Ag Net Podcast, sponsored by AgriGold, comes on another rainy day across the Buckeye State. A wide range of topics greet host Joel Penhorwood alongside Kolt Buchenroth, Dale Minyo, Zach Parrott, and Matt Reese.

We begin by hearing in the first installment of Plow Talk from guests Matthew and Jason Bane of Bane-Welker Equipment. Ohio Corn and Wheat’s Tadd Nicholson talks about the Tariffs Hurt the Heartland campaign while grain merchandiser Jon Scheve updates us on his latest market advice in this tough economic and agronomic time (hint: it has to do with prevent plant). Union County Fred Yoder updates us on his perspective for this unique growing season and how he compares it to 2011, all the while strawberry producer Todd Stacy talks a unique way of picking his crop.… Continue reading

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May 10 numbers bearish

By Doug Tenney, Leist Mercantile

Ending stocks were bigger than expected all across the board for both old and new.

It’s been a crazy week for grain prices, unfortunately a down week. Producers have been active with field preparations and most of all, planting finally taking place. However, at least for Ohio, it has not been a full week of planting for everyone. 

Old crop corn ending stocks were 2.095 billion bushels, last month 2.035 billion bushels. Soybean ending stocks were 995 million bushels, last month 895 million bushels. Wheat ending stocks were 1.127 billion bushels, last month 1.087 billion bushels. Looking ahead to 2019 crops, corn ending stocks were 2.485 billion bushels, soybeans 970 million bushels, with wheat at 1.141 billion bushels.

This report today was a supply and demand report which also includes the first report for 2019 crops. In a first ever, world grain tables without China are also detailed.Continue reading

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State budget clears house, moves to senate

By Kolt Buchenroth
The Ohio House of Representatives has placed their seal of approval on their version of the State’s operating budget totaling $69 billion. The bill, which passed 85-9 was massive in size and covers a lot of ground. Several pieces of the bill relate to agriculture.
“We are following some provisions dealing with water taxes, agricultural products, education that are really important under Farm Bureau policy,” said Jenna Beadle, Ohio Farm Bureau director of state policy.
It’s no surprise that the House’s version of the budget relates in large part to water quality and Ohio Governor Mike DeWine’s H2Ohio Program. The bill’s language says in part that the initiative encourages cooperation among government, business, higher education, agriculture, and conservation organizations.
While Governor DeWine had proposed the program’s funding for the next decade in the budget, the legislature had other plans.
“The House has removed the mechanism for funding H2Ohio on an ongoing basis and has only funded it for fiscal years 2020 and 2021.
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Early planting soybean flop (and other soil health lessons) shared on new forum for farmers

By Matt Reese

So Nathan Brown decided he would try to plant some soybeans — about 3 acres worth — on March 24 to see how they’d do. While the stand won’t make it as a whole, Brown did learn some lessons from the experiment.

The seeds germinated well, but struggled to consistently emerge from the cold, wet soils this spring.

“The beans planted March 24 were planted at 2 inches deep. I thought that would keep them in the ground longer to avoid frost, which it did. But, being 2 inches deep, there was not enough warmth to actually get them up and out of the ground once they germinated. Next year I’ll hopefully try planting early again in another plot and I’ll shallow up my planting,” he said. “I learned a lot from the experiment.”

Brown shared about his experiences with the March 24 soybeans on the Ohio Soil Health and Cover Crops Facebook page.… Continue reading

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How long can a corn seed hold its breath?

By Andy Westhoven, AgriGold regional agronomist

At this point in the calendar, undoubtedly, there are many corn fields planted around the area. Just as undoubtedly, planting conditions will be like the story of Goldilocks and the Three Bears — some will be too cold and wet, some too hot and dry, and some just right. The role as an agronomist usually travels down the road of the first two situations in Goldilocks’ tale — less than ideal planting conditions. Somewhere in the eastern Corn Belt, after a corn field has been planted, a torrential rainfall will occur and/or there will be a cold period where a grower might wonder, “What is to become of the corn seed I just planted? How long can it last in the soil before rotting and dying?”

Last season almost gave growers a false impression of corn emergence when most fields emerged in about 8 days.… Continue reading

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Vaccinate ‘em — It’s better than antibiotics or snake oil

By Don “Doc” Sanders

There’s an exciting world out there when it comes to vaccines and their ability to protect us and our animals from disease.

Most of you likely are aware that a vaccine, when given at the appropriate time and by the correct route, stimulates the immune systems of people and animals. We have vaccines for tetanus, whooping cough, polio, classical swine fever (hog cholera), many strains of salmonella (in animals), Rota virus, some Corona viruses in pigs and calves, distemper, rabies, Herpes I virus in cattle and horses…the list goes on and on.

However, there isn’t a vaccine for Chronic Wasting Disease (CWD) in deer. This disease causes a gradual wasting away of body reserves, drooling, stumbling and incoordination, swallowing difficulty and eventually death. CWD is not caused by a virus or bacteria, but rather what might appear to be a harmless protein, called a prion. Prions settle in the brain, where they multiply.… Continue reading

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Ohio industry leaders join together to denounce tariff increase

By Kolt Buchenroth, Zach Parrott and Joel Penhorwood

Tariffs Hurt the Heartland — the nationwide grassroots campaign against tariffs — in conjunction with the Council of the Great Lakes Region, hosted a town hall this week in Cleveland at the 2019 Great Lakes Economic Forum.

The event featured a discussion with Ohio business owners, manufacturers and farmers on the impact of tariffs on the state’s economy. The conversation came one day after President Trump announced that he will be increasing tariffs substantially this week.

The group released the following statement regarding the tweet announcement that tariffs on $200 billion of goods will increase from 10 to 25% on Friday.

“For 10 months, Americans have been paying the full cost of the trade war, not China. To be clear, tariffs are taxes that Americans pay, and this sudden increase with little notice will only punish U.S farmers, businesses and consumers,” Tariffs Hurt the Heartland said in the statement. … Continue reading

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Wet weather swamping early May

Andrew Armstrong – Clark County

It is nice and soggy over here. When we started planting two weeks ago, it took us all day to get the problems worked out of the corn planter. We did get 100 acres of corn planted and that was it. It started raining that evening and we have not been out in the field since. As of yesterday and today we mowed an awful lot of grass. That is all we have been able to accomplish.
The corn has spiked through, but it is pretty slow going. Between yesterday and today I am guessing it will jump up a little bit more.

We haven’t set out a rain gauge. We can measure it but as far as we are concerned it is just too wet and we really don’t want to know how much rain we have gotten. If we did have a rain gauge out it would have probably washed away by now anyway.… Continue reading

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Finding value in sharing farm data

By Jenna Lee and John Fulton

What will sharing my farm data accomplish and what is the value?

Many farmers may find themselves thinking about this very question as they weigh the benefits and drawbacks of sharing their farm data. The potential to realize value from data can often stem from sharing it via digital technologies to service providers or other consultants. In many cases, it may be necessary for a grower to share farm data with multiple entities in order to obtain the largest return on investment possible. While many simple solutions have been presented to farmers that make it easier than ever to share data, the benefits and tangible value of doing so have not been clearly or accurately conveyed.

Sharing data for use in collaborative tools may result in benefits such as:

  • Reducing the number of duplicate datasets generated or collected.
  • Innovative digital tools allow for drawing of site-specific information and learnings.
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