~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Friday August 10, 2007!A service of Farm Credit of East Central Oklahoma, American Farmers and Ranchers & Midwest Farm Shows
-- Oklahoma Wheat Crop unchanged from July- Kansas down to 288 million bushels- US Corn Crop at 13.054 Billion Bushels!
-- Peterson Calls His Farm Bill "Not Perfect, but Pretty Good"
-- It's a High Tech Future for Oklahoma's Farmers!
-- American Farm Bureau Releases their August Market Outlook.
-- Mike Kastl of the Oklahoma Conservation Commission Honored for THREE decades of Service!
-- Wheat Quality Summit Set for August 14 in Stillwater- TODAY is the deadline for Registration!
-- No Need to Spray- at least for now with the extremely hot weather firmly in place.
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Oklahoma Wheat Crop unchanged from July- Kansas down to 288 million bushels- US Corn Crop at 13.054 Billion Bushels!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~USDA left the harvested acres for the 2007 Oklahoma wheat crop alone at 4.3 million acres- left the yield per acre alone at 27 bushels per acre and left the 2007 production estimate unchanged from July at 116 million bushels. They did drop Kansas and their harvested acres by 100,000- left their yield at 32 bushels per acre- and dropped Kansas under the July estimate of 300 million bushels to 288 million bushels.
USDA is predicting the average yield per bushel nationally for the 2007 corn crop will be 152.8 bushels per acre(more than three bushels higher per acre than last year!)- and that puts the 2007 corn crop over the thirteen billion bushel mark at 13.054 billion bushels. That is a 24% increase in the size of the corn crop over last year's production.
Cotton production is off 20% from last year at 17.3 million bales- Oklahoma's crop is actually predicted to be higher this year at 277,000 bales- up from 203,000 bales of last year. The 2007 soybean crop will be down 18% from a year ago- with the national 2007 production predicted at 2.63 billion bushels.
Click here for the USDA Crop Production Numbers as released on Friday morning.
Peterson Calls His Farm Bill "Not Perfect, but Pretty Good"
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~At the big FarmFest farm show that is being held in Minnesota this year, the sparks flew between the Administration, the House and Senate over farm policy. A ninety minute discussion/debate was held featuring Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns, House Ag Committee Chairman Collin Peterson and Senator Norm Coleman.
There was the predictable veto threat from the Secretary, while Peterson defended his bill and Senator Coleman saying that if both sides will be reasonable, we can still assemble a final product this year. In fact, Senator Coleman, a Republican, was highly complimentary of the work done by Peterson and his Committee, saying that the House version will he his template for what he wants to see happen in the Senate Ag Committee, of which he is a member.
I have read several versions of the event that occurred earlier this week at Farmfest, but the one I liked the best was penned by a writer for the Mankato Free Press. I have linked that one for you below- take a few minutes and read it- it may provide some insight into what happens next month as the Senate begins its process of crafting their version of farm policy.
Click here to read of the "classic Washington battle" played out in Minnesota over farm policy earlier this week.
It's a High Tech Future for Oklahoma's Farmers!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The first ever Ag Technology Field Day held in Oklahoma happened at the Grady County Fairgrounds in Chickasha yesterday- and a fairly decent crowd of farmers, extension leaders and agribusinessmen came together to talk about the promise of high tech for production agriculture, as well as some of the problems that we must address.
Large spray rigs were on display and were running across the open field adjacent to the Fairground facility- one of the rigs had a massive wingspan of more than a hundred feet- and as it moved across the field the boom was automatically adjusting to keep the nozzles at a constant level from the ground in order to best regulate whatever they might be spraying. Other rigs had GPS guidance that would allow them to shut off nozzles when they passed over ground they had already sprayed.
One of the challenges of high tech spray rigs, and for that matter, any chemical spray rig, is the fear of chemical drift. That subject was covered by Dr. Bob Wulf of Kansas State University during an afternoon session. Wulf says that using strategies that minimize drift make a lot of sense for the spray operator, the farmer and the landowner- as it conserves the chemical or fertilizer you might be spraying, as well as maximizes the efficacy of the product being used as well. We talked with Dr. Randy Taylor, Extension Ag Engineer at OSU about this first Ag Technology Field Day and have that conversation linked below for your listening.
Click here to listen to Ron visit with Dr. Randy Taylor of OSU on GPS and a lot more about the world of High Tech Ag.
American Farm Bureau Releases their August Market Outlook.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Economists at the American Farm Bureau Federation report that U.S. economic activity for the last two quarters show an economy that still has not figured out which way it is headed. They site a volatile equity market. Of the five components that make up the GDP, only one showed positive numbers during the first quarter. But all five, consumption, investment, inventories, net exports and government, showed positive numbers during the second quarter.
In their monthly Economic Analysis Team Market Update, the Farm Bureau economists continue to point to Ethanol as a bright spot, because of its significant growth over the past couple of years. To date, 130 domestic ethanol plants are operational with a capacity of nearly 6.5 million gallons per year. Another 96 plants are under construction.
The report also points out that farmland values have set another record high. $2,160 per acre. That's the 20th consecutive annual rise. Producers spent 235 billion dollars in production expenses in 2006. The Farm Bureau economists say that 12 billion dollar increase over the previous year is not all that out of line with earlier years.
To take a look at the August Report from the AFBF Economists- Click here!
Mike Kastl of the Oklahoma Conservation Commission Honored for THREE decades of Service!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Mike Kastl, director of the Oklahoma Conservation Commission's Abandoned Mine Land Reclamation Program (AML) was among five people honored recently for significant contributions to the regulation of coal mines and the reclamation of mined lands. Kastl was hailed as an acknowledged pioneer, advocate and leader at the national level in the effort to correct the damage and dangers caused by abandoned coal mines. The Office of Surface Mining, Reclamation and Enforcement (OSM) held an "Awards Recognition and Reunion" event on the front lawn of a Department of Interior building in Washington, D.C., on Aug. 3. The event marked the 30th anniversary since President Jimmy Carter signed the Surface Mining and Reclamation Control Act (SMCRA) into law on Aug. 3, 1977.
When Kastl began working for the Oklahoma Conservation Commission 32 years ago, 16 eastern Oklahoma counties had more than 32,000 acres of abandoned surface mined land and more than 40,000 acres of abandoned underground mines. His first assignment was to help the counties deal with the extensive damage while monitoring the work Congress was doing to draft the Surface Mining Act. He coordinated the development of the Oklahoma Abandoned Mine Land (AML) Reclamation Program and helped develop the national AML guidelines for reclamation programs and projects. He coordinated the formation of the Mid-Continent Coal Coalition, which was instrumental in securing Abandoned Mine Land (AML) funding for "Minimum Program" states and tribes. He helped develop the first AML technical course for state and federal project inspectors and taught other OSM courses.
For those of you familiar with the Oklahoma Ag Leadership Program, I am proud to call Mike a fellow classmate of OALP Class One! Mike's contribution to the improvement of rural Oklahoma during his many years of service is just another example of how the OALP has helped some of the very best young men and ladies involved in rural Oklahoma in many different pursuits. Congrats to Mike and his wife Teresa for this national honor!
Wheat Quality Summit Set for August 14 in Stillwater- TODAY is the deadline for Registration!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~With planting season just around the corner, producers are making decisions on what varieties to plant. High yields and test weights are important factors to the producer when choosing which varieties to plant, but good end-use quality should also be a consideration. The Wheat Quality Summit, hosted by Plains Grains, Inc. and OSU's Food and Ag Products Center (FAPC), is designed to help producers understand how quality is determined once wheat moves through the supply chain from the elevator to the milling and baking industry.
.To be competitive in the global market, it is important that the U. S. wheat industry delivers a quality product to the customer. The Wheat Quality Summit will help the producer understand what quality means to the milling and baking community and how that quality is affected by the varieties they plant.
The 2007 Wheat Quality Summit is next Tuesday, August 14 at the FAPC in Stillwater, Okla. Sign-in, coffee, and donuts will be from 8:30 -9:00 followed by morning speakers and afternoon tours. Lunch will be provided and there is no charge for attending. For more information on the agenda and for registration, you can call Karen Smith at 405-744-6071 by the close of business today- or check out the link that we for you below.
Click here for more information on the Wheat Quality Summit August 14 in Stillwater
No Need to Spray- at least for now with the extremely hot weather firmly in place.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~OSU Plant Pathologist Dr. John Damicone is the point man here in Oklahoma when it comes to Asian Soybean Rust and he has identified rust, mostly in sentinel plots, in five Oklahoma Counties. Here is his latest commentary as posted on the USDA website for the disease, including his thoughts on NOT spraying for the rust at this time.
Damicone writes "As of August 8, rust was found in Tulsa County in a sentinel plot at R6 at an incidence of 1%. Rust was also found in the sentinel plot in Choctaw County (where rust was found earlier in a commercial field) at 2% on MG6.6 soybeans at R1. Rust incidence increased in the sentinel plots in Payne County from 1 to 8% in R6 soybeans and was found in R3 soybeans at 2%. Sentinel plots in Okmulgee, Ottawa, and Washington Counties remained negative for rust this week. Several irrigated fields in Muskogee Co. were also visited and found to be negative for rust this week. Current weather conditions and those forecasted for next week will favor neither rust or crop development. Hot and windy conditions are expected to prevail state wide with temperatures reaching triple digits in some areas. Other diseases such as downy mildew, brown spot, bacterial blight, and frogeye leaf spot are widespread and continue to make rust recognition difficult."
As far as spraying is concerned, "I am suspending fungicide recommendations for rust this week. Excessive heat approaching triple digits is not conducive to further rust development and soybeans are beginning to show signs of moisture stress. Fungicide application to heat and drought stressed soybeans is not likely to prove productive. Decisions to spray for rust should be reevaluated when the weather moderates after considering crop condition and yield prospects."
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