ISU Extension and Outreach Scott County Calendar PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Amanda Heitz   
Friday, 06 April 2012 09:13

Soy Checkoff Sponsors Tractor Pulls to Showcase Biodiesel PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by United Soybean Board   
Friday, 06 April 2012 08:31
Partnerships Help Increase Availability and Use of Soy Biodiesel to Diesel Users

ST. LOUIS (April 4, 2012) – U.S. biodiesel production reached an all-time record in 2011, and the United Soybean Board (USB) and soy checkoff want to help it repeat that feat in 2012.

As part of a larger strategy to promote soy biodiesel’s benefits among diesel users, the checkoff will once again co-sponsor the National Tractor Pullers Association (NTPA) season of approximately 80 tractor pulls across the United States. The checkoff partners with the NTPA to increase biodiesel availability and use among pulling fans, many of whom work in the agricultural and trucking sectors.

“Pulling tractors perform so well on biodiesel, it’s a perfect way to show farmers biodiesel’s benefits,” says USB Communications Chair Jimmy Sneed, a soybean farmer from Hernando, Miss. “It’s important to remind farmers that using soybean oil for biodiesel is one of the components that determines the value of each bushel we grow. It makes sense for soybean farmers to use their own products and promote biodiesel.”

Under the co-sponsorship, tractors in the NTPA’s Light Pro Stock division will run on biodiesel. So these pullers will put biodiesel to the test all season long.

According to millions of miles of checkoff-funded testing, biodiesel can stand up to those tests. It offers excellent horsepower, mileage, cetane and lubricity. And, since it can be made from U.S. soybean oil, it’s the only diesel fuel that can help declare freedom from foreign oil.

Check the NTPA schedule to find out if Light Pro Stock “Powered by Biodiesel” hooks will be in your area.

The soy checkoff also established other partnerships to promote biodiesel. Later this year, the checkoff will sponsor the National Truck Driving Championships, a trucking competition that attracts tens of thousands of representatives from that industry. Additionally, the checkoff partners with Clean Cities coalitions; assorted state, county and regional fairs; and the tractor pulls at the National Farm Machinery Show to promote the use of biodiesel, Bioheat® and other soy-based products.

The soy checkoff funds most of the biodiesel research and promotion efforts through the National Biodiesel Board to help increase the use of U.S. soybean oil. Soybean oil remains the dominant feedstock for U.S. biodiesel production.

These efforts helped push production of America’s Advanced Biofuel to a record of nearly 1.1 million gallons in 2011. This exceeded the Environmental Protection Agency’s 800-million-gallon requirement and surpassed the industry’s previous record of 690 million gallons set in 2008.

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
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Veterans Fundamental to Next Generation of Family Farmers and Ranchers PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Elisha Smith   
Tuesday, 03 April 2012 08:06

By John Crabtree, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it , Center for Rural Affairs

The future of family farming and ranching depends on a new generation getting started in agriculture. Our experience at the Center for Rural Affairs teaches us that many military veterans want to be part of the next generation of farmers and ranchers. The number of returning veterans and the disproportionate number from rural America, coupled with our nation’s debt to all these brave men and women, cry out for public policies that help beginners – especially military veterans – establish farms and ranches.

Last month, several veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan traveled to Washington, DC to participate in a nationwide grassroots lobbying effort spearheaded by the Center for Rural Affairs. Justin Doerr, a farmer and military veteran from Plainview, Nebraska, was there to talk to lawmakers and USDA about the importance of the Beginning Farmer and Rancher Opportunity Act in supporting young farmers and ranchers, especially those who have served in the military.

He talked about the need to knock down some of the barriers beginners face, including access to land and credit. And that beginners who get started by serving niche markets and raising high-value crops often struggle to obtain crop insurance. Including policies that address these challenges in the next farm bill is an investment not only in the next generation of family farmers and ranchers, but all of rural America, and it is money well spent. It is also a tribute to the thousands of veterans who hope to farm or ranch someday.

News Releases - Agribusiness
Written by Heather Lilienthal   
Monday, 02 April 2012 07:37

WEST DES MOINES, IOWA – March 29, 2012 – Since 1962, Geater Machining & Manufacturing Co. has been a leader in precision machined and fabricated parts for aerospace, electronics and high tech industries, while maintaining its small-town Iowa roots. This month, the Independence-based company is honored with the Iowa Farm Bureau Renew Rural Iowa entrepreneur of the month award.

Geater Manufacturing & Machining (GMM) is a true “one-stop-shop” for companies needing specialized parts built in short time frames. GMM can build single parts or components that require complex assembly using precision machining and sheet metal fabrication.

The company isn’t only focused on its clients. Geater is also active in the Independence community.

“We think it’s very important, especially being in the rural community that we’re in, to have programs where we go out and teach the students and the parents what manufacturing is all about,” said Joe Meier, vice president of Geater operations. He said manufacturing technology has evolved to include high-dollar equipment; creating a challenge for high schools to offer opportunities for students to be exposed to and gain experience in the industry. Through outreach programs, Geater works with area schools to educate students and parents about careers available in manufacturing.

Greg Alber, president of the Buchanan County Farm Bureau, said, “They’re just giving back to the community and schools and wanting to make manufacturing even more important to this area.” He added that it’s important for rural communities to have successful non-agriculture businesses such as Geater.

Renew Rural Iowa (RRI) is an Iowa Farm Bureau Federation initiative supporting new and existing businesses through education, mentoring and financial resources. For more information about RRI, visit


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

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