Agribusiness
Soy Checkoff Research Yields Smartphone App PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by United Soybean Board   
Monday, 12 November 2012 15:00
‘Extreme Beans’ gives farmers easy way to evaluate the economics of inputs

ST. LOUIS (Nov. 12, 2012) – Ever wonder whether it’s worth it to apply a fungicide? How about the most cost-effective seeding rate? The national soy checkoff has put that information in the palm of your hand.

A new app developed by the United Soybean Board (USB) includes two calculators that help farmers plan for their next crop. One helps users determine whether the yield benefits of various input combinations justify the costs. The other uses the main maturity rates for a farmer’s region, the cost of soybean seed and an estimated price of the soybeans at the time of sale to determine an optimal seeding rate based on a percentage of return.

The app also includes documents and videos that describe the research behind each tool.

“This is a really easy way for farmers to get an idea about seeding rates for soybeans based on both the cost of the seed and the price of the harvested grain,” says Seth Naeve, lead investigator and associate professor of agronomy and plant genetics, University of Minnesota. “It’s a way for them to utilize that information together to provide them with a numerical suggestion for seeding rates.”

The Extreme Beans app is available for Apple iPhone and Android-enabled smartphones and other devices. Farmers can easily find it in their device’s app store by simply searching by the title.

The Extreme Beans app is a result of the soy checkoff-funded “Maximum Yield Through Inputs” study, which compared the yields from plots where various inputs were applied to plots without additional inputs. Researchers threw “everything but the kitchen sink” at the soybeans, Naeve says.

“The checkoff is continually looking for ways to give farmers tools to improve production and increase the value of their soybeans,” says Jim Schriver, chair of USB’s production committee and soybean farmer from Bluffton, Ind. “When we see opportunities to help add value to the product, not only in terms of production but also quality, we want to help it come to market, and one of the best ways to do that is through a tool.”

An insert in the August issue of Corn & Soybean Digest included summary results from the extensive study. To request a copy of the insert, click This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .

The 69 farmer-directors of USB oversee the investments of the soy checkoff to maximize profit opportunities for all U.S. soybean farmers. These volunteers invest and leverage checkoff funds to increase the value of U.S. soy meal and oil, to ensure U.S. soybean farmers and their customers have the freedom and infrastructure to operate, and to meet the needs of U.S. soy’s customers. As stipulated in the federal Soybean Promotion, Research and Consumer Information Act, the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service has oversight responsibilities for USB and the soy checkoff.
For more information on the United Soybean Board, visit us at www.UnitedSoybean.org
Follow us on Twitter: www.twitter.com/unitedsoy
View our YouTube channel: www.youtube.com/user/UnitedSoybeanBoard
###

 
Exploring Genetic Improvement for Feed Efficiency in Beef Cattle PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Amanda Heitz   
Monday, 12 November 2012 13:26
As the world population continues to grow, and there is increasing demand for crop production acres to raise food and fuel, efficiency in the cattle industry is becoming ever more important. Feed efficiency, or the amount of body weight gain from a pound of feed, is key to feedlot performance and profitability. Global food security is dependent on increased production from fewer inputs.

Efficient use of feed is even more important as the cost of feed and other inputs continues to increase. Feed costs have historically been 50-70 percent of the cost of production in beef enterprises, and as corn prices exceed $7 per bushel feed costs are nearly 80 percent of the cost in many feedlot operations. A feed efficiency improvement of approximately 10 percent across
the entire feedlot sector would reduce feed costs $1.2 billion.

Feed efficiency is often thought of as a feedlot attribute. But the cow-calf segment consumes about 70 percent of the calories in beef production, and of those more than half are used for maintenance. Unfortunately feed efficiency and feed intake is difficult to measure on large numbers of cattle, so improvements have been slow in coming.

The genetic improvement of feed efficiency in beef cattle is the focus of a large USDA funded integrated research and extension project. It will leverage a variety of methods to achieve the goal of feed efficiency. The five year, USDA-AFRI funded project titled “National Program for Genetic Improvement of Feed Efficiency in Beef Cattle” (www.beefefficiency.org) is to sustainably reduce feed resources required to produce beef. The project will rapidly develop and deploy novel nutritional, genomic and genetic improvement technologies.

Stronger international competitiveness of U.S. agriculture, increased food production through increased animal protein production without additional feed inputs, and reduced greenhouse gas footprint are goals of project participants. The project will gather existing individual feed intake and composition records across the major U.S. beef breeds and back fill deficiencies in these represented breeds through collection of new records.

This project will be featured at the upcoming Driftless Region Beef conference Jan. 31 and Feb. 1, 2013, in Dubuque, Iowa. Three of the speakers are involved in the feed efficiency project including Dan Shike University of Illinois; Matt Spangler, University of Nebraska-Lincoln; and Dan Loy, Iowa State University.

The conference will begin at 1 p.m. on Jan. 31 and run till 11:45 a.m. on Feb. 1. Thursday’s afternoon program will focus on feed efficiency at all stages of production, with an evening discussion focused on straight versus crossbreeding. Friday morning’s program includes three breakout sessions for feedlot operations and three for cow herds.

Registration for the conference is $80 before Jan. 15 or $100 after Jan. 15. Additional information about the conference is available at www.aep.iastate.edu/beef . Registration will open for the conference on Dec. 1.

The Driftless Region Beef Conference is sponsored by the University of Illinois Extension, Iowa State University Extension and Outreach, the University of Minnesota Extension, and University of Wisconsin Extension. The planning team strives to deliver the latest in research-based information regarding the beef cattle industry. For more information or to receive a brochure, contact Denise Schwab at 319-721-9624.

--30--

 
IOWA FARM BUREAU TO FEATURE TEMPLE GRANDIN AS KEYNOTE FOR 94TH ANNUAL MEETING PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Laurie Johns   
Monday, 12 November 2012 13:24

Governor Proclaims Dec. 2-8 as “Iowa Farm Bureau Week”

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA – Nov. 8, 2012 – Members of the state’s largest grassroots farm organization will gather with renewed vigor to hear nationally-acclaimed animal welfare expert, Temple Grandin,  keynote the 94th Annual Meeting of the Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF), Dec. 4 and 5 at the newly- remodeled Veterans Auditorium in Des Moines.

Governor Terry Branstad has also declared Dec. 2-8 as ‘Iowa Farm Bureau Week’ to honor the many accomplishments and contributions of the 94-year-old grassroots farm organization.

“This year our annual meeting theme, ‘People, Progress and Pride,’ celebrates the accomplishments, challenges and potential of our many diverse family farmers.  Today’s responsible farmers are strong members of their communities and are focused on the future; they’re always looking for better ways to provide safe food choices for today’s consumers, so they embrace innovation and the expertise of others,” said IFBF President Craig Hill.  “That’s why we’re bringing together a diverse, high caliber group of speakers like Dr. Temple Grandin, noted animal welfare expert and livestock-handling equipment designer, who also consults for firms such as Burger King, McDonald's, Swift and others.”

Temple Grandin’s challenges as an autistic young woman and the unique perspective it gave her with animals was profiled in the 2010 HBO Emmy Award-winning movie, “Temple Grandin,” starring Claire Danes.  Since the movie’s success, Grandin’s perspectives and livestock facility designs have won international acclaim.

Another nationally-recognized keynote speaker will provide unique insight for attendees, Dr. Lowell Catlett.  The ‘futurist’ economist and engaging speaker will take the stage at 1:30 p.m. Dec. 5 to discuss ‘Food for the Smart Planet.’ Dr. Catlett helps national and international organizations do futuristic planning on the impacts of technology on careers, lifestyles and the economy.

The author of numerous books, Dr. Catlett also works with the U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Labor, Interior, Defense, Education, Energy and the World Bank.

In addition to innovative speakers, the 94th IFBF annual meeting also features several ‘hands-on’ educational seminars to help Farm Bureau members navigate challenging markets, rules and regulations as well as the most current best management practices for water quality.  This year the access to expert advice from noted leaders has been expanded to include three separate sessions on Tuesday, Dec. 4.

Also, Iowa’s best and brightest young farmers will take the stage for the IFBF Young Farmers Discussion Meet Dec. 4, competing for the state title and a John Deere X320 riding lawn mower and the chance to advance to the national competition, January 13-16, in Nashville.

IFBF President and Milo farmer, Craig Hill, will address members and special guests on Wednesday, Dec. 5, at 8:30 a.m. The organization will celebrate the contributions of dedicated Farm Bureau members with a recognition banquet Tuesday, Dec. 4, at noon and a young farm leaders’ achievement luncheon on Dec. 5.

Farm Bureau’s voting delegate session and elections will be held Wednesday, Dec. 5.   The following directors are up for re-election this year: IFBF District 1 board member Carlton Kjos, District 3 board member Phil Sundblad, and District 5 board member Morey Hill and Vice President Joe Heinrich.

Members can register for the 2012 IFBF annual meeting at their county Farm Bureau offices. For a complete listing of events and activities, visit www.iowafarmbureau.com.

 
FOOD, FEED PRICE INCREASES TO AFFECT CONSUMERS, FARMERS ALIKE PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Heather Lilienthal   
Tuesday, 06 November 2012 13:45

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA – November 6, 2012 – Whether you’re feeding your family or your livestock next year, you’ll feel a pinch in your pocketbook. After dealing with the worst drought in 50 years, Iowa farmers found corn and soybean yields down across the board, causing crop prices to increase due to the weather’s pressure.

The increase in corn prices will affect farmers’ feed prices for their livestock and that will trickle down to consumers as early as January at the grocery store.

“These higher grain prices continue to put pressure on grain users, from ethanol plants to livestock farmers,” explained Dave Miller, Iowa Farm Bureau Federation (IFBF) director of research and commodity services. “In the past few weeks, ethanol production is running 12 percent below last year’s levels. Cattle, hog and poultry farmers are trimming back production expectations for the coming year.”

These adjustments aren’t causing concerns for consumers just yet. As farmers bring livestock to market sooner and at lighter weights, meat supplies are strong. Miller warns that this will change at the beginning of the year.

“Lowered production levels are expected to support beef and pork prices in 2013,” said Miller. “Consumers can expect higher meat prices in the coming year as livestock farmers continue to make adjustments due to the continued strength and increases in feed costs.”

Despite dry conditions throughout the growing season and reduced yields, Iowa farmers continue to lead the nation in corn production. According to Miller, the statewide corn yield is estimated to be 140 bushels per acre, down 32 bushels per acre in 2011. Iowa farmers raised 1.9 billion bushels of corn this year, accounting for nearly 18 percent of U.S. corn production.

Iowa soybean fields weathered the drought better than expected and Iowa farmers will have harvested an estimated 399 million bushels of soybeans this year, representing 14 percent of U.S. soybean production. Soybean yields were also down from last year, coming in at an estimated 35.3 bushels per acre.

The drought brought stresses not only to farmers, but to the markets, as well; tightening supply estimates and raising prices.  Miller said prices for corn and soybeans are higher than a year ago, with corn prices 23 percent higher and soybean prices 20 percent higher. The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) releases its monthly crop production report Nov. 9 and Miller says the mid-range of the USDA estimate of season-average prices is $7.80 for corn and $15.25 for soybeans.

 -30-

 
AMERICA NEEDS FARMERS 2012 BRINGS $21,500 DONATION TO IOWA FOOD BANKS DURING CRUCIAL TIME OF NEED PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Laurie Johns   
Tuesday, 06 November 2012 10:28

Iowa Farm Bureau and University of Iowa ANF Partnership Helps Elevate Issue of Hunger in Iowa

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA – November 2, 2012 –As Iowans make their meal and travel plans for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday, there are many in the state who are struggling to just put food on the table.  With winter weather approaching and needs increasing at food banks across the state, the America Needs Farmers (ANF) $21,500 donation comes at a critical juncture.

The Iowa Food Bank Association says $21,500 would help provide over 60,000 meals to hungry Iowans.  “This is the time of year when our food banks statewide see an increased need; we’re heading into winter and utility bills are starting to go up and with food prices also rising this year, that means food banks are critically low,” said Jordan Vernoy, director of the Food Bank Association of Iowa.

Iowa Farm Bureau and the University of Iowa Athletics Department began their partnership in 2011 to invigorate the ANF program, which was first started by former Hawkeye legendary coach, Hayden Fry, to show support of farmers impacted by the 1985 Farm Crisis.  “The ANF initiative brought in 5,040 pounds of food for area food banks during this year’s spring scrimmage.  We’re happy to help even more, with this joint IFBF and U of I donation of $21,500 for hungry families statewide,” said IFBF Executive Director Denny Presnall.

To date, the ANF initiative has contributed more than $41,000 to Iowa’s food banks since the program began last year.

“ANF is important on many fronts because it helps elevate not only the issue of farming, but also food and hunger to a nationwide audience,” said Presnall.

To see more ANF Game Day fun or to learn more about America Needs Farmers, visit  www.americaneedsfarmers.org.   The Iowa Food Bank Association is a collaboration of eight food banks that collect and distribute food and essential supplies across the state.  To learn more, or to make a donation, go to: www.iowafba.org .

-30 -

About Iowa Farm Bureau

The Iowa Farm Bureau Federation is a grassroots, statewide organization dedicated to enhancing the People, Progress and Pride of Iowa.  More than 153,000 families in Iowa are Farm Bureau members, working together to achieve farm and rural prosperity.  For more information about Farm Bureau and agriculture, visit the online Newsroom page at www.iowafarmbureau.com.

 
<< Start < Prev 81 82 83 84 85 86 87 88 89 90 Next > End >>

Page 84 of 178