A Weekly Update from the Red River Farm Network
Tuesday, April 19, 2022
Where is Spring? April blizzards are not unheard of in the Northern Plains, but this past week’s snowstorm was a doozy. At one point, a no-travel advisory was in place for all of North Dakota, but the extreme southeast corner of the state. I-94 from Jamestown to the Montana border was shut down for three days. Thirty-six inches of snow was reported at Minot last week. Snowfall totals also include 25 inches at Dickinson, 20 inches at Harvey, 13 inches at Grand Forks, 12 inches at Devils Lake and ten inches at Thief River Falls. There was more snow in the region over the weekend. Record low temps have also been seen this past week, including five degrees Sunday morning at the Grand Forks airport.
The Moisture is a Blessing and a Curse – While the moisture from the spring snow storm is a blessing for dry areas, it’s also a curse for calving season. Williston, North Dakota farmer Ryan Ellis said it’s sometimes necessary to lose a few calves to save the herd. “That’s the situation we’re in this year. I guess we’d preferred this moisture to come in as rain, but at this point, we’ll take whatever moisture we can get. Without it, the pastures weren’t going to be good.” Near Houghton, South Dakota, Troy Knecht is also dealing with wet weather. “If you have wet and warm at calving season, you can manage that. If you have cold and dry, you can manage that, but wet and cold together is a bad combination,” said Knecht. “We’ve had good luck so far, but had to treat some under-the-weather calves.”
Calving Season Continues in the Storm – The spring storm doesn’t stop calving season. Binford, North Dakota rancher Megan Overby says they are checking cows every hour. “We have a day shift and a night shift crew going on in these extreme conditions. Thankfully, many of the cows decided to calve during the days this week.” Overby says fresh pairs are being put in the calving barn. The older calves do struggle with the cold and wet weather. “Calves are anywhere from a couple of days to a week old. At 2 a.m., we were grabbing calves and putting them inside the calving barn to warm them up a bit. They had vigor, but they may have short ears and tails as a result.” Photo credit: Megan Overby.
A Historic Snowstorm – Jamestown, North Dakota rancher Cassia Schlenker, whose family owns and operates Wilkinson Farms Simmentals, says their biggest challenge is possible sick calves due to fluctuating weather. “We’re accustomed to calving in some of the most brutal parts of winter, but our challenge now is keeping the calves we have on the ground bedded and healthy.” Schlenker says her family has also taken steps to protect the older calves born in February/March, by bringing cow-calf pairs closer to the farmstead and ensuring the calves have access to windbreak or barn space out of the elements. Photo provided by Cheyenne Ketterling.
A Two-Week Planting Delay Anticipated – With this past week’s blizzard, Strathcona, Minnesota farmer Jim Kukowski said there’s no way planting will start before May 1. “Where I live, once the snow has gone and the frost starts coming out, it takes two weeks.” In Langdon, North Dakota, CHS Agronomy Wholesale Sales Manager Kyle Rollness doesn’t expect a quick snowmelt. “We’re probably going to see it on the ground awhile,” says Rollness. “The good news is growers in the western part of the state are glad to see precipitation coming, regardless of what form it shows up in.” Hazelton, North Dakota farmer Mike Appert agrees; the wet, heavy snow is welcome for the dry conditions. Spring planting will also be delayed on his farm. “We’ve been getting equipment ready and getting all of our inputs in place. We thought we’d be rolling by April 20, but it’s obviously not going to happen. This spring will probably be two weeks behind normal.”
More Time to Prepare for Spring Planting – The spring blizzard delays fieldwork in western North Dakota, but farmers welcome the moisture. “The blizzard brought more snow than we’ve had all winter,” said Paul Anderson, a farmer near Coleharbor, North Dakota. “We got snow in early December last year, but it had melted off by early March. We had been without snow for about a month before this snow.” Without this blizzard, the week of April 11 would have been the week to get started with spring planting. Instead, Anderson said the weather delay gives the farm more time to prepare. “We put a few more projects in the shop to work on until it dries out. We’ll be in better shape when it’s time to go.” Photo credit: Paul Anderson
Wet Snow Pushes Back Planting Schedule – The Minot area received more than 30 inches of snow this past week. Pat Murphy, who farms at Carpio, received about two feet. “It did blow around a fair amount, but it looks like there is a great cover on the fields,” said Murphy. “It was as wet a snow as I’ve seen in a long time; it was like trying to shovel mud.” This weather will push back the planting schedule. “Without this snow, we would have seen guys planting within the next week in this area and now it is going to be at least three weeks before anything gets planted at the earliest.”
Moisture Benefit is Less Than Expected – NDAWN Director Daryl Ritchison says farmers and ranchers in western North Dakota may not have received as much moisture where they wanted in last week’s spring blizzard due to the windy conditions. “I have more than 50 weather cameras in western and central North Dakota; most of the fields and pastures have very little snow on them,” says Ritchison. “I had a long conversation with a rancher who was extremely disappointed that he won’t get hardly any benefits from this moisture, because it was blown into piles. That’s the case for everyone. Fields and pastures will clear much quicker than folks think.”
Pioneer Agronomy Update – Listen to the Pioneer Agronomy Update on the Red River Farm Network. In this week’s reports, Pioneer Field Agronomist Jesse Moch is considering corn maturities and a potentially late planting season. In addition, The Pioneer Agronomy Updates on YouTube, Facebook and Twitter will begin later this week.
Control the Controllables – The recent snowstorm pushed back the planting schedule. CHS Ag Services General Manager Ryan Anderson says it will take time to dry out fields and warm up the seedbed. “The moisture is going to be a good thing if we can turn the thermometers up.” Product shortages and logistical challenges have been making headlines this spring. However, Anderson says a plan is in place. “We’ve got a lot of good options out there and a lot of new products that people probably don’t realize. I feel really good about our supply plan, especially when it comes to Roundup.”
What’s Hot, What’s Not in the Markets – Wheat, corn and soybeans are starting the week higher. Randy Martinson of Martinson Ag Risk Management is featured in this week’s edition of What’s Hot, What’s Not in the Markets and says the slow planting progress has the market’s attention. Cattle markets remain sluggish.
Fielding Questions – In the latest AgCountry Farm Credit Services Fielding Questions podcast, meteorologist Paul Trombley offers insight into the upcoming planting season and beyond. A slow spring warmup has been a reality across Minnesota and the Dakotas. Trombley also reviews the potential drought situation. “Thankfully, things have gotten better. If you look at September 2021, almost the entire state of Minnesota was in moderate to severe drought and that was seen into the Dakotas.” That has been changed in eastern North Dakota and most of Minnesota.
Prevent Plant Possible with Planting Delays – Planting progress is expected to remain slow across the entire Corn Belt. “Soil temperatures are not at germination threshold,” said Dan Basse, president, AgResource Company. “Farmers don’t want to put seed in the ground and hope it comes up in two to three weeks.” The bulk of spring planting could be concentrated into two-to-three weeks in the last week of April and first part of May. Basse expects prevent plant to enter the conversation as planting delays continue. “If big rains come early, farmers may consider prevent plant as an option. That seems strange with prices so high, but revenue insurance was so fancy this year. If farmers don’t have enough fertilizer or chemicals, that could pay off. We’re closely monitoring that in the Northern Plains, Delta and southeast states.”
The Acreage Battle at Play in the Markets – Corn and soybeans closed mixed before the holiday weekend, while the wheat market saw more of a substantial sell-off. U.S. Commodities Vice President Jason Roose says the acreage mix continues to be in play. “At $7 corn and $16 beans, have we already battled for acres? Personally, I think the producer will plant everything they possibly can.” Roose says there are many factors that will impact acreage in play. “Prices are up in these areas. Do we start rationing? There are so many things to watch: the crude oil, dollar and exports. Risk management will be important this year.”
TransFARMation: Dealing With the Anxiety of Product Shortages – Due the supply chain headaches, farmers are dealing with shortages of certain crop protection products, fertilizer and farm machinery parts. Farmer and crop consultant Curt Burns, who is based at Stewart, Minnesota, discusses the anxiety faced by growers this spring. When making a visit to his farm clients, Burns says the conversation nearly always turns to the angst and nervousness in production agriculture today. “You talk about this in the shop or the kitchen table and it is more like being a counselor than an agronomy person.” TransFARMation is made possible through a partnership of the Red River Farm Network, Linder Farm Network and Minnesota Department of Agriculture. Funding for this episode is provided by the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Listen to the podcast.
Crop Optimization – Preparation is the key to a successful growing season. “You get back out what you put into it,” said Jeff Koscelny, account management lead, WestBred. For those still considering spring wheat, seed should be locked in as soon as possible. “It’s going to be pretty tight with a lot of demand for wheat seed. We took a lot of extra steps this past year with the drought to make sure that our supplies were reliable for our customers.”
E-15 is Back for the Summer – At a POET ethanol facility in Iowa, President Biden made it official. “The EPA is planning to issue an emergency waiver allowing E-15 gasoline to be sold across the United States this summer,” said Biden. “On June 1, you won’t show up at your local gas station and see a bag over the pump that has the cheapest gas. You’ll be able to fill up with E-15.” Those comments were met with a standing ovation. Biden said this effort won’t solve all of the problems, but it will help. Biden also said biofuels are a part of reaching the goal of zero net carbon by 2050.
Vilsack: The Biden Administration Supports Biofuels – Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack told the Red River Farm Network the Biden administration understands the importance of biofuels in terms of dealing with current challenges. “This is an administration that has invested $700 million into the biofuels industry. I expect announcements very soon about those payments being made to biofuel producers across the country,” said Vilsack. “This is an administration that’s making it easier to access E-15 by virtue of investments in blender pump systems. One of the challenges with E-15 is to make sure that the dispensing systems in convenient stores are able to do that appropriately.” Vilsack said the administration is developing feedstocks and logistics for biofuels as well.
Walz: Ethanol is a Bridge to a Carbon-Free Future – Minnesota Governor Tim Walz is glad E-15 will be available through the summer driving season. “It’s an incredible market for Minnesota and an opportunity to lower fuel costs. It also reduces carbon emissions. None of us made the claim biofuels are the solution to everything, but they’re a darn good piece of what we can do as we bridge toward a more carbon-free future,” said Walz. “On April 1, we sent a letter asking the White House to make this decision. I think it bodes well for producers and prices at the pump. There will be complaints that using E-15 over the summer months maybe adds on the emission side of things, but I think what Minnesotans recognize is the gas price increases have a big impact on family budgets.” Walz told the Red River Farm Network he would like to see a more permanent fix for year-round E-15. “It won’t happen overnight, but I hope there’s a solution out there.”
SD Corn Comments – President Biden approved summertime use of E-15. There’s still more work ahead, but South Dakota Corn is pleased with the announcement. Hear more in the latest South Dakota Corn Comments.
Biofuels Industry Seeking a More Permanent E-15 Fix – Growth Energy CEO Emily Skor said the White House sent a strong signal at Tuesday’s event in Iowa. “I’m going to use the president’s own words. He said American biofuels have a role to play now.” Skor told reporters the next steps for the industry will be working with Congress to pass a law for a permanent E-15 fix. “We have to go back and visit with our bipartisan champions and see what the path forward looks like,” said Skor. “It takes time, a little bit of education and creative thinking. We’re seeing the fruits of that labor in conversations with our champions.”
Another Step Forward for Canola to Be in the Renewable Fuel Standard – The canola industry has been working for years to get canola included as a feedstock in the Renewable Fuels Standard. “The U.S. Canola Association sent in the petition in March 2020. It’s been two years since that petition was sent in to the EPA to get canola oil approved,” said Barry Coleman, executive director, Northern Canola Growers Association. “Once this is published in the Federal Register, we’re counting on a July or August timeframe for a final rule to be put in place. With what’s happening geopolitically right now, it was convenient for the administration to be able to put this approval in as another step to lower fuel prices.” Read more about the proposed rulemaking.
Food Security or Global Unrest – The World Bank, International Monetary Fund, World Trade Organization and the United Nations World Food Program are calling for action on global food security. In a joint statement, the four organizations said the global food supply is being stressed by the war in Ukraine, the pandemic and climate change. They warn the dramatic increase in food prices could result in social unrest, especially in the poorest countries or those affected by the war.
Inflation Impacts Agriculture – At 8.5 percent, the general inflation rate is at its highest level in years, but Bell Bank Senior Vice President of Agribusiness Development Lynn Paulson thinks the inflation rate for production agriculture is much higher. “When you’re talking about doubling the price of fertilizer, chemical, fuel and all of the things that go into raising crops or livestock, inflation rates are higher,” says Paulson. “The other part is with 8.5 percent inflation, at some point that will start reducing demand for high end agricultural products like beef and other things that aren’t necessities.” Without question, this will be the most expensive crop in history to produce. The high commodity prices are offsetting concerns for this year, but the worry comes late. “In 2023 and 2024, if commodity prices reset; input prices take longer to reset. We’re making long-term decisions on short- term events and that’s something we probably need to pump the brakes on a bit.”
Farm Credit Administration Issues Q1 Report on Farm Economy – The Farm Credit Administration cites high inflation and the increase in interest rates as concerns. Oil prices were rising before the Russian invasion of Ukraine but continued to surge. The report says corn prices have reached their highest level since 2013, but market volatility remains high. Livestock margins are being squeezed by higher feed costs. The Farm Credit System reports strong financial results for 2021, with solid loan growth and very good credit quality.
Dry Bean Scene – In this week’s Dry Bean Scene, NDSU Extension Entomologist Janet Knodel talks about the 2021 Dry Bean Grower Survey results of weed and insect infestations. The Dry Bean Scene is sponsored by the Northarvest Bean Growers Association.
Ag Shipments Stuck in Black Sea Ports – Due to the Russian blockade, more than 80 shipping vessels are stuck in Ukrainian seaports. Most of those ships are carrying ag commodities. The agriculture ministry is estimating 1.25 million tons of grains and oilseeds are stuck on these ships and are in danger of spoiling.
Ships Stranded at Shanghai – Shanghai’s COVID lockdown is now in its third week. The Shanghai port is the largest in the world for container shipping, amplifying the supply chain problems worldwide. A plan to restart business activity has been announced. Last week, it was estimated 500 ships were anchored off the coast because workers unable to unload the vessels.
Mid-Term Elections May Shake Things Up – It is a mid-term election year. All of the 435 seats in the House and 34 of the 100 seats in the Senate are up for a vote. The outcome of these elections will impact the future of agricultural policy, including the upcoming farm bill. Cook Political Report Senior Editor Dave Wasserman says mid-term elections are typically a referendum on the party in power. With Democrats leading in the House and Senate, there is a greater chance for change. “President Biden’s approval rating, on average, is 41 percent. The fancy, political science term for that is wipe-out territory. It’s not possible for the party in power in Congress to hold the majority when the approval rating is that low.” Wasserman anticipates as many as 100 new members of Congress in 2023. “That means there’s a lot of education for farm groups in advance of the 2023 Farm Bill.”
Avian Influenza Outbreak Escalates – The number of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza cases are increasing across the Dakotas and Minnesota. According to Minnesota State Board of Animal Health Assistant Director Dale Lauer, this is a different virus than 2015. “As this virus continues to circulate in domestic poultry as well as wild birds, it is constantly changing. With those changes, the virus becomes more adaptive to poultry, and it requires a lower dose to infect poultry.” Cool, damp conditions contribute to the spread of HPAI. “We go at this everyday with the hope that the sun will shine and it will get warmer. I think we’re like almost like farmers getting ready to plant their crops, we hope for better weather and know that day will come.
MFBF Update – It’s a week of recess for the Minnesota Legislature. Ahead of the break, Minnesota Farm Bureau Director of Public Policy Amber Glaeser says lawmakers passed funding to help the state with Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza. Hear more in the latest MFBF Update.
Beef Demand Expected to Increase – Demand for beef ahead of the summer months is expected to increase. DTN Livestock Market Analyst ShayLe Stewart expects prices to rise once we get past the summer hump. “As we get through the dog days of summer that pressure live cattle prices, we should be expecting a tremendous market for the second half of 2022.” Drought, tight feed supplies and high corn prices have forced many cattle producers to reduce or completely liquidate their herd. That liquidation could boost prices down the road. The U.S. has the second smallest cow herd on record in the last 22 years, behind 2014 numbers. “With fewer calves and beef demand so strong, ranchers could garnish a higher premium for calves. I’m not going to say we’re going to see 2014 prices all over again, but I am going to tell producers we can expect market wins somewhat significant of what we saw in 2014”.
NCBA to USDA: Suspend Brazil Beef Imports – The National Cattlemen’s Beef Association is calling for the immediate suspension of fresh beef imports from Brazil. These imports increased dramatically over the past two years. NCBA Vice President of Government Affairs Ethan Lane said Brazil is slow to report atypical BSE cases. “The rest of the world, when they get those cases, reports within 24 hours. Brazil has a ten-plus year history of reporting months or years late.” Lane says the NCBA views that as a concern and wants Brazil to follow the same food safety standards as other countries.
Beet Stock Values – According to Acres & Shares broker Jayson Menke, last week there was only one American Crystal Sugar Company beet stock brokered sale for five shares at $4,500. “While the season is winding down,” Menke said,”we still have shares for sale at the $4,500 level and will likely have a few more sales yet this spring.”
Double-Digit Increases for ND Cropland Values – North Dakota cropland values increased 11 percent in the past year. However, cash rental rates only went up three percent. The survey conducted by the North Dakota Department of Trust Lands found the highest increase in land values were in southeastern North Dakota, up more than 22 percent. The southern Red River Valley had the most expensive farmland with an average of $4,500 per acre. The southern Valley also has the highest cropland rental rates, averaging $133 per acre.
Cropland Prices Increase – Cropland prices, on average, increased 10.9 percent from 2021 to 2022. In contrast, statewide cash rent only increased 3.1 percent. North Dakota State University Extension Agricultural Finance Specialist Bryon Parman said there are differences regionally. “The southeast increased just over 22 percent with some areas in the northwest increasing 11 to 12 percent.” Parman expects rental rates to remain steady. “Rental rates didn’t come up as much because of these high production costs. I just don’t think landlords wanted to do a double digit increase in rent because a lot of farmers would probably see that high of an increase and balk at it.”
U.S. Tractor and Combine Sales Declined in March – According to the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, tractor and combine sales declined in March. Tractor sales were down 21 percent while combine sales were off ten percent, marking the first decline in sales since last July. AEM says 100-plus horsepower, two-wheel drive tractors were the only segment to show an increase with sales up seven percent. Mid-range tractors were down 14 percent and four-wheel drive tractor sales were down two percent. The sub-40 horse tractors saw the largest decline, down 25.5 percent.
Amicus Brief Filed Friday – A coalition of agricultural groups filed a friend of the court brief supporting landowners who are challenging the definition of Waters of the United States. The case is expected to be heard in the U.S. Supreme Court this summer. The groups filing the brief include Farm Bureau and organizations representing corn, soybeans, sugar, wheat, sheep and pork.
GHG Emissions Drop in ’20 – Greenhouse gas emissions declined nine percent in 2020 due largely to the pandemic’s impact on travel and economic activity. The EPA reports methane emissions from beef cattle declined slightly. Emissions related to dairy cattle increased marginally. Emissions from all U.S. livestock represent less than three percent of all greenhouse gas emissions nationwide.
Protecting Endangered Species and Supporting Agriculture – The Environmental Protection Agency has released its first-ever plan to protect endangered species from pesticides and provide certainty for farmers. The agency will prioritize its endangered species obligation for all pesticide ingredients with court-enforceable deadlines and new registrations of conventional products. The EPA also plans to improve its effort to identify and protect endangered species while engaging with industry stakeholders.
Senate Ag Committee Hosting First 2023 Farm Bill Hearing – The Senate Agriculture Committee will host their first 2023 Farm Bill field hearing on Friday, April 29 in Michigan. Witnesses will be announced prior to the hearing. There will also be a field hearing in Arkansas in the upcoming months. Read more.
House Ag Committee to Review Rising Beef Prices – The CEOs of the four largest U.S. meatpackers, Cargill, Tyson Foods, JBS and National Beef Packing, will participate in a House Agriculture Committee hearing on the cattle markets. The hearing will be live-streamed on the House Agriculture Committee’s website on April 27.
Stressing the Sustainability Story – Zola Olson is one of five Minnesota beef ambassadors. The Montevideo teenager says sustainability is a hot-button issue for the beef industry. “Sustainability is definitely one of the things that people are looking for and it’s all about just being the most productive that we can be while also staying eco-friendly.” Olson said sustainability also means farms and ranches need to be financially viable.
ND Soybean Processors Address Community Concerns – North Dakota Soybean Processors hosted town hall meetings in Casselton to discuss the proposed crush plant, scheduled to break ground this spring. Minnesota Soybean Processors Senior Advisor Scott White says the plant will add value to a farmer’s bottom line. “I’ve seen outside studies that say with two dedicated soybean processing plants in the state, on average, basis will improve by five to ten cents a bushel.” White says there are misconceptions of soybean processing plants. “We don’t have dedicated soybean processing plants in the state so they’re not well-known. Characteristics of other grain processing facilities may be applied to soybean processing plants, but they have very different odor and sound characteristics.”
Minimal Traffic Disruptions Expected – Transportation logistics have been cited as a concern for the proposed soy crush plant at Casselton, North Dakota. “We had a third-party study look at how many trucks we think are going to transit the local county and interstate into the facility,” said Eric Kresin, general manager of market development, Consolidated Grain and Barge. “Dumping 40,000 bushels an hour, trucks should be in and out of the facility quickly which should help minimize the number of trucks sitting on the road.” Kresin says they have worked out a plan with the township to keep trucks routed on certain highways and roads to minimize traffic disruptions. CBB is part of the joint venture with North Dakota Soybean Processors for this project.
Minnesota’s Dicamba Rule Gains EPA Approval – The Environmental Protection Agency approved Minnesota’s state-specific dicamba restrictions. Dicamba products cannot be sprayed after June 30 north of I-94. South of the interstate, the application deadline is June 12. The temperature cutoff for application is 85 degrees.
BASF Defends Patent – BASF has won a patent protection case against Sharda Cropchem and Sharda USA. The dispute is over BASF’s patent for pyraclostrobin. That’s a key ingredient in BASF fungicides, including Priaxor, Headline and Stamina.
Expanding the SIMPASS-Applied Solutions Portfolio – AMVAC and BASF are working together to develop a granular soybean inoculant. This product will be part of the SIMPASS-applied Solutions portfolio. “Our goal right now is to build a broad portfolio of solutions,” explained Jim Lappin, who oversees the SIMPASS business. “We’ve had several announcements over the last several months talking about those collaborations and this year we’ll look at those on a broader scale.” SIMPASS allows farmers to apply up to three products simultaneously. That provides the flexibility to provide a prescriptive number of micronutrients in key parts of the field.
Lawsuit Against East River Electric Dismissed – A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit filed by Huron-based Dakota Energy Cooperative against its power supplier East River Electric Power Cooperative. Dakota Energy was seeking an early termination of its contract with East River Electric and Basin Electric Cooperative, which is in place until the end of 2075. The judge determined the contract is clear and there is no allowance for an early termination of the deal.
Titan Machinery and Augmenta Offer Real-Time Variable Rate Application – Titan Machinery is partnering with Augmenta to provide a variable rate application system. This device automates a variety of in-season crop inputs, including nitrogen, fungicides and growth-rate regulators. Titan Machinery has more than 100 dealers in the United States and Europe.
U.S. Sugar-Imperial Sugar in Court – A case dealing with a sugar industry merger will begin today in a Delaware courtroom. United States Sugar Corporation is seeking to purchase Imperial Sugar Company, but the Department of Justice wants to block the merger. U.S. Sugar, American Crystal Sugar Company, Minn-Dak Farmers Cooperative and Wyoming Sugar are part of marketing cooperative called United Sugars.
ADM Capitalizes on Alternative Protein Trend – Archer Daniels Midland is investing $300 million in the expansion of its Decatur, Illinois plant. This facility will double its production of soy protein concentrate. ADM has made multiple investments in the alternative protein business in recent years, including the new pea protein plant in Enderlin, North Dakota.
Smart Insect Trap Developed for Canola Fields – The Bayer Crop Protection Innovation Lab has developed a trap that catches and counts potential pests in canola fields. The MagicTrap delivers the data automatically to an app and the information can be used to develop treatment options.
A Long-Standing Dispute Over Wetlands Determination – A Foster, South Dakota farmer is seeking a summary judgement in a legal fight with the NRCS over a wetlands determination. Arlen Foster claims the agency refused to reconsider the wetlands determination after new evidence was provided two years ago. Foster has been battling USDA over a small tract of land since 2008.
Thompson Named SD State Veterinarian – Minnesota State Veterinarian Dr. Beth Thompson will soon take over as South Dakota’s new state veterinarian. Thompson’s last day working in Minnesota will be May 8. Minnesota’s Assistant Director Dr. Linda Glaser will serve as the interim state veterinarian starting May 9.
Knight Added to Black Gold Farms Executive Team – Mark Knight has joined Black Gold Farms as its chief operating officer. Knight has been with AgReserves for the past 23 years working as a manager, vice president of international operations and HR director. Black Gold Farms has potato farms throughout the nation and is headquartered in Grand Forks.
FFAR Funds NDSU Research – The Foundation for Food and Agriculture Research has awarded nine individuals with its Innovator in Food and Agriculture Research Award. The early-career scientists receiving funding for their work include Dr. Barney Geddes of North Dakota State University.
Jean Johnson Honored – The NDSU Agribusiness Club has presented Jean Johnson of AgCountry Farm Credit Services with its John Lee Coulter Award. This award recognizes Johnson’s contributions to agribusiness and service to the community.
Former MN Ag Commissioner Passes – Jon Wefald passed away over the weekend. Wefald, 84, served as agriculture commissioner in Governor Wendell Anderson’s administration from 1971-to-1977. He later became president of Southwest State University in Marshall and was chancellor of the Minnesota university system. Wefald was president of Kansas State University for 23 years, beginning in 1986.
Last Week’s Trivia- Yellow is the most popular color for the Peeps Easter candy. Kristal Rick of MAGNO Seed wins our weekly trivia challenge. Paul Sproule of Sproule Farms, Jamie Reed of Valley United Co-op, Mark Schmidt of KWS Seed and Dianne Bettin of LB Pork earn runner-up honors. The ‘first 20’ rounds out with Dennis Sabel of Minnesota Farm Bureau, Jim Altringer of Dakota Plains Ag, Brian Rydlund of CHS Hedging, Lyle Orwig of Certified Ag Dealer, Bob Lebacken of RML Trading, Dave Gehrtz of Proseed, Sara O’Toole of O’Toole Seed, Marshall Mayor Bob Byrnes, Mike Trosen of Meadowland Farmers Cooperative, Norm Groot of Monterey County Farm Bureau, Twyla Wulf of Clear Springs Cattle Company, retired controller Evonne Wold, Crookston farmer Ron Lanctot, Pisek farmer Ernie Barta and Kevin Schulz of Dakota Farmer/Nebraska Farmer.
This Week’s Trivia- Snap, Crackle and Pop are mascots for what popular breakfast cereal? Send your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org.
|RRFN Upcoming Events|
|April 24 - April 26||MN State FFA Convention - Minneapolis/St. Paul, MN|
|April 24 - April 26||SD State FFA Convention - Brookings, SD|
|May 12||NDSU Monthly Agricultural Market Outlook - Online Webinar|
|May 31||NDSA District 2 Spring Roundup - Montpelier|
|June 1||NDSA District 6 Spring Roundup - Towner|
|June 3||NDSA District 1 Spring Roundup - Maddock, ND|
|June 3 - June 4||ND Junior Angus Association Field Day - Carrington, ND|
|June 3 - June 4||ND Junior Simmental Association Field Day - Carrington, ND|
|June 6 - June 9||ND FFA State Convention - Fargo ND|
|June 6||NDSA District 5 Spring Roundup - Amidon|
|June 7||NDSA District 4 Spring Roundup - Carson|
|Contact RRFN||Don Wick
|RRFN Affiliate Stations|
|Aberdeen, SD – 105.5 FM||Ada, MN – 106.5 FM||Bagley, MN – 96.7 FM||Bemidji, MN – 1300 AM|
|Benson, MN – 1290 AM||Bismarck, ND – 1270 AM||Bismarck, ND – 1270 AM||Casselton, ND – 103.9 FM|
|Crookston, MN – 1260 AM||Devils Lake, ND – 103.5 FM||Fergus Falls, MN – 1250 AM||Fosston, MN – 1480 AM|
|Glenwood, MN – 107.1 FM||Grafton, ND – 1340 AM||Jamestown, ND – 600 AM||Langdon, ND – 1080 AM|
|Mahnomen, MN – 101.5 FM||Mayville, ND – 105.5 FM||Roseau, MN – 102.1 FM||Rugby, ND – 1450 AM|
|Thief River Falls, MN – 1460 AM||Wadena, MN – 920 AM|
FarmNetNews is a production of the Red River Farm Network. RRFN is based in Grand Forks, North Dakota and provides news to farmers and ranchers across Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota.