A Weekly Update from the Red River Farm Network
Monday, January 02, 2023
#1: A Record Cold, Wet Spring – The wet, cold spring tops the Red River Farm Network list of the top ten stories of the year. For much of the Northern Plains, it was one of the wettest springs on record. In early June, World Weather Incorporated Senior Ag Meteorologist Drew Lerner spoke about the very unusual conditions. “I’ve been doing this for a long time and we always see something new,” said Lerner. “I’ve been surprised with the persistence of the coolness. You expect April to be cool, but in May you just coudn’t get rid of it.” Conditions were far from perfect for seeding a crop. Chris Hong, who farms at Buxton, North Dakota, said the region went from mud to dust. “It has been miserable; you get two or three inches of rain and a couple days later you have dirt blowing.” Despite the challenges from Mother Nature, the markets provided an incentive to keep planting. Seed was still going in the ground in late June.
#2: Russia Invades Ukraine – Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and its impact on agriculture is the number two story for the Red River Farm Network this past year. This is a war between two global agricultural powerhouses. An agreement to move grain out of the Black Sea was negotiated by the United Nations, Turkey, Ukraine and Russia. This deal was done to reduce food security concerns, especially in places like the Middle East and Africa. Oil, natural gas and fertilizer markets have also been influenced by the war. The damage to Ukraine’s infrastructure is significant and will influence agriculture in this region for generations to come.
#3: Supply Chain Challenges – Supply chain shortages have affected every aspect of agriculture. Steel shortages, labor issues and transportation challenges were in place before the pandemic began. Those problems only intensified this past year. The timeline between ordering a new tractor and when it showed up on the farm was painfully long. Product shortages were a reality for crop producers with glyphosate and glufosinate being the two primary examples. Wilbur Ellis District Sales Manager Chris Wharam believes the Roundup situation will improve this year. “A major contributor to the glyphosate tightness in 2022 was the hurricane combined with China not producing as much as material as they tried to clean up the environment ahead of their Olympics,” Wharam told RRFN. “I think it will be quite a bit better in 2023.” Wharam anticipates the availability of glufosinate to be better than this past year, but supplies will still be tight.
#4: Rapid Expansion of the Soybean Processing Industry – Three soybean crush plants are in the works in North Dakota. Another dozen plants are under construction or proposed across the country. The Green Bison Soy Processing plant at Spiritwood was the first North Dakota project announced this year. ADM and Marathon Oil have a joint venture to produce renewable diesel fuel at the Marathon refinery in Dickinson. North Dakota Soybean Processors broke ground in August at Casselton. This is a joint venture between Minnesota Soybean Processors and Louisiana-based CGB Enterprises. Executive General Manager Jeramie Weller expects soybean meal to be shipped out of state. “We’re looking at Canada as taking a lot of the soybean meal and also the PNW with exports,” said Weller. “For us, the South and Southwest U.S., including Mexico, are also markets.” Late in the year, Epitome Energy announced it would be building its crush plant at Grand Forks. The same project was announced three years ago in Crookston. “After 16 months of being in the air permitting process, the MPCA (MInnesota Pollution Control Agency) just wanted to proceed with some components that no other crush facilities are being held to,” said Epitome CEO Dennis Egan. The demand for renewable diesel, especially on the West Coast, resulted in this fundamental change in the soybean industry.
#5: Transportation Trouble – Moving grain and other agricultural products from one place to another was a logistical nightmare in 2022. The transportation trouble was the Number Five story for the Red River Farm Network. In a normal year, the Mississippi River is a major thoroughfare for grain, fertilizer and other farm inputs. However, this was not a normal year. Thanks to the drought, water levels were at historic lows. There was a time in early October when more than 2,000 barges were backed up on the river. The other transportation story making headlines was the threat of a railroad strike. A tentative deal was secured in mid-September, but a few of the unions failed to ratify the agreement. A strike was imminent, but Congress intervened to keep the trains moving. Finally, the truck driver shortage continues. Nearly 80,000 truck driver jobs remain unfilled.
#6: Emergency Relief Program Delivers Dollars to Farm Country – Ad hoc disaster assistance was delivered to farmers and ranchers this past year, which was ranked as the Red River Farm Network’s # 6 story of 2022. The Emergency Relief Program delivered $6.4 billion for unexpected crop and livestock losses associated with natural disasters. Phase Two was announced late in the year for farmers and ranchers who suffered eligible losses in 2020 and 2021 but did not receive assistance in Phase One. There have been some hiccups, including payment limits and the way IRS defined income. Farm Service Agency Administrator Zach Ducheneaux said the agency made every effort to accommodate producers. “The charge the Secretary (Vilsack) gave us was to keep filling the gaps, doing all the work we can and don’t dig in your heels in if you get something not quite right, be flexible.”
#7: Midterm Elections Bring Change at National and State Level for Agriculture – For the past two years, the Democrats had the majority in both chambers of Congress and President Biden was in the Oval Office. The Democrats ultimately kept a narrow majority in the Senate, but lost control of the House. The House Agriculture Committee will now be chaired by Pennsylvania Congressman Glenn ‘G.T.’ Thompson of Pennsylvania, succeeding Representative David Scott of Georgia. “His priorities would be on dairy, forestry, nutrition from an oversight perspective and crop insurance,” said Jim Callan, who leads a public policy firm in Washington, D.C.. “Mr. Scott has focused on climate, racial equity and Southern commodities so I think there will be a significant differences in their approach and priorities.” The biggest change at the state level is in Minnesota with the DFL now controlling the governor’s office, the Senate and the House. The Minnesota House Agriculture Committee will be chaired by Representative Samantha Vang and the Senate Agriculture Committee will be led by State Senator Aric Putman. Vang is a community organizer from Brooklyn Center and Putman is a college professor in St. Cloud.
#8: A ‘Calf-Killing’ Spring Blizzard – An April blizzard across the Northern Plains was described as ‘a calf-killing storm.’ Belfield, North Dakota rancher Byron Richard shared his experience. “Everyone around here is in the midst of calving and there was a fair amount of death loss. A group of our own cattle went out on a dam and fell through. We lost 16 of them. Another producer I know lost 70 head of cattle.” Richard said they’re grateful for the moisture even though calving has been challenging. “You can tell people are getting tired. We had guys checking cattle on horseback, because the snow was too deep. What would normally take an hour suddenly took three hours to make it back to the barn.” The USDA Livestock Indemnity Program was made available to help compensate producers for a portion of their losses. The North Dakota Stockmen’s Association and the North Dakota Stockmen’s Foundation distributed nearly a quarter-million dollars in aid through the Hope After Haley Disaster Relief Program.
#9: Farmland Values Break New Records in ’22 – USDA’s land values summary shows farmland values rose by $420 per acre this year. American Farm Bureau Federation economist Danny Munch said that’s the largest year-over-year increase since the survey began in 1997. “Part of this increase is going to be linked to the rise in commodity prices that have translated to higher farming values in those lands, especially in heavy row crop Heartland states like Iowa and Indiana. There’s also competition with federal government program incentives like the Conservation Reserve Program.” Pifer’s Auction and Realty President Kevin Pifer said there has been a steady increase in farmland values over the past 15 months. Good quality farm ground increased in value by 40-to-60 percent during the time. The threat of high interest rates may eventually soften land values, but that hasn’t happened yet.
#10: HPAI Takes a Toll on Poultry Industry – More than 50 million birds have been lost this past year due to Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza. That breaks the previous record set in 2015 and is the Number Ten story of the year for the Red River Farm Network. Thirty percent of the cases were traced to wild birds seven years ago. That compares to 85 percent this past year. Erica Sawatzke is a turkey grower and chairs the Minnesota Board of Animal Health. Sawatzke said euthanizing birds has taken a financial and emotional toll on the industry. “There’s always that fear of who’s next; it’s just a helpless feeling.”
WOTUS Final Definition Established – The EPA and Army Corps of Engineers has released its final definition for the Waters of the United States. This rule restores the language that was in place prior to 2015 for navigable waters under the Clean Water Act. EPA Administrator Michael Regan said this will provide greater certainty for farmers, ranchers and landowners.
‘A Recipe for Disaster’ – The Biden Administration wrapped up 2022 by redefining the Waters of the United States rule. North Dakota Senator Kevin Cramer said the Biden Administration has gone too far. “When (EPA) Administrator Regan and (Army Corps of Engineers) Assistant Administrator Fox visited North Dakota, I reiterated the empowerment of EPA and Army Corps bureaucrats by giving them federal authority over non-navigable ponds, ditches and puddles is a recipe for disaster,” said Cramer.. “Our state is and will be at the epicenter of this debate.” North Dakota Senator John Hoeven responded to Friday’s announcement by saying the new rule violates private property rights and will increase costs for American consumers. South Dakota Senator John Thune said he will ask the White House to abandon this change, or he will push the Senate to overturn the new WOTUS definition.
Expect More Litigation – North Dakota Grain Growers Association Executive Director Dan Woglsand is not surprised with the EPA-Army Corps of Engineers WOTUS decision. “This is another classic case of federal regulatory overreach,” said Wogsland. “I’m very confident that the State of North Dakota is going to sue again and prevail in court once again, the only losers are the taxpayers.”
Sackett Ruling Expected by Spring – Meanwhile, the U.S. Supreme Court is reviewing the scope of the Clean Water Rule An Idaho couple, Micheal and Chantell Sackett, is suing over WOTUS and the federal government permitting authority. A decision is expected from the high court by spring.
Management Resolutions – Northland Community Technical College Farm Business Management instructor Betsy Jensen recommends farmers go into the New Year with a marketing plan resolution. “I think last year a lot of guys watched wheat prices go to $13 and they still owned that wheat at $9 so having that marketing plan will certainly help you do a better job.” Interest expense in 2021 and 2022 are significantly different. By figuring out how much it costs to store grain, Jensen said it will mean “more bang for your buck.”
Optimisim for ’23 – Reflecting on the past year, North Dakota Ag Commissioner Doug Goehring said it was profitable for farmers, even with difficult conditions. “Farmers have reaped some of the rewards with higher commodity prices, but operating costs are also insanely expensive.” Goehring is optimistic about the future with value-added agriculture picking up steam in the state. “We had some fantastic announcements in 2022 with processing facilities setting up shop in North Dakota.” The soy crush projects in Spiritwood, Casselton and Grand Forks and the corn wet milling project in Grand Forks were cited.
Preparing Financial Info for the Lender – MinnStar Bank Senior Vice President Kent Thiesse says an accurate and up-to-date year-end balance sheet are critically important. “First of all, I think it’s good for your farm business,” said Thiesse. “Ag lenders are going to require at a minimum, a balance sheet and cash flow for the year. A lot like to do an end-of-the-year analysis from the year before as well.” Lenders will need these items for loan documentation, but they are also helpful tools for the farmer.
Crop Insurance Will Face Criticism During the ’23 Farm Bill Debate – The farm bill debate will begin soon after the new Congress organizes in the weeks ahead. Will Stafford is CHS’ representative in Washington, D.C. and expects to see a familiar theme during the farm bill process. “There will always be attacks on crop insurance,” said Stafford. “Those attacks often come from both the far-left and the far-right planks of the Democrat and Republican parties. We will need to do a good job engaging our champions and educating new members on why it is important.”
Ag Issues at the Forefront for Fischbach – Minnesota Congresswoman Michelle Fischbach is preparing for the farm bill debate. “We have to protect the risk management programs, the sugar program, which is very important in my district, and making sure we are maintaining a reliable, sustainable disaster relief program.” Fischbach said she will also be looking for ways to lower input costs, secure the supply chain, expand rural broadband and maintain the H-2A and H-2B visa programs.
Russia Seeks New Trade Route – Russia is building a new transportation trade route to the Indian Ocean, through Iran. This 1,900-mile rail route will help Russia serve Iran, India, the Middle East and Africa. With this deal, Russia can also avoid trade sanctions.
Food Price Increases – A new USDA report shows retail food prices increased 8.9 percent in the first seven months of 2022. All 13 food categories increased by at least four percent compared to the historical average. Three food categories increased by more than ten percent. Eggs jumped 21 percent in price; fats and oils increased 13 percent, and poultry rose 12 percent. Fresh vegetables had the lowest increase of all categories this year.
Winter Wheat Crop in Precarious Condition – South Dakota Wheat Commission Executive Director Reid Christopherson says the drought this past fall could limit the potential of the winter wheat crop in the spring. “Some producers reported a lack of emergence on dry crops this fall/winter, so time will tell if the seed is dormant or partially sprouted. I anticipate that we will see some winter kill from the early dryness.” The winter snow cover is a welcome sight for Christopherson.
Most Ag Commodities Enjoyed Year-Over-Year Price Increases – Corn and soybeans rose more than 14 percent in 2022. Chicago wheat futures gained three percent. Kansas City wheat was up 11 percent and Minneapolis wheat declined 4.4 percent in value. Feeder cattle futures increased ten percent. Lean hogs were up nearly eight percent. Crude oil was up nearly seven percent. The Dow as down eight percent and the S&P declined nearly 19 percent.
$15-Plus Beans – On Thursday, soybean futures have topped $15 for the first time since June. That’s when soybeans hit an all-time high of $17.69 per bushel. The strength is being tied to the expected increase in demand from China and Argentine crop conditions.
South American Weather Drives Market – Clayton Pope Commodities market analyst Taylor Pope says South American weather continues to be the main market driver. “Volatility has just been through the roof. The Argentina weather markets continue to play games.” Pope expects Brazil to offset the losses in Argentina. “Our bias continues to be with what’s going on in Brazil and their likely record crop that will overshadow any trouble in Argentina. These next couple of days will be important to the long-term trend.”
Argentine Crops Struggle – Soybean and Corn Advisor President Michael Cordonnier has again lowered his corn and soybean production estimates for Argentina. “They’re getting just enough (rain) to keep going for another few days until evaporation takes the advantage away so yes, I’ve been lowering both corn and soybean estimates on a weekly basis.” Only 60 percent of soybeans in Argentina have been planted. “If we don’t get rain in the next ten days, it’ll be too late.”
NCI Hosts Market Update: Weather Edition – The Northern Crops Institute is hosting another Market Update: Weather Edition webinar Wednesday at 8 AM. This webinar will feature Daryl Ritchison, Director, North Dakota Agricultural Weather Network. The weather edition focuses on engaging with past NCI course participants and offering important weather insights to those professionals. Register for the webinar online.
Difficult Year for Grain Shippers – According to the USDA Grain Transportation Report, service was an ongoing problem for grain shippers this past year. The number of unfilled grain car orders reached its highest level ever at the end of June at 17,200. At year end, unfilled grain car orders were at 16,400.
North Dakota Legislative Report – The North Dakota Legislative Report for the 2023 session begins with an update from House Agriculture Committee Chairman Paul Thomas of Velva. With the rapid growth of the soybean crush facilities in the state, Thomas speaks about the need to expand the animal agriculture sector, too. The North Dakota Legislative Report is sponsored by the North Dakota Farmers Union, North Dakota Grain Growers Association, North Dakota Corn Growers Association, NDFB and the North Dakota Soybean Growers Association.
ND Lawmakers to Consider Ways to Enhance Animal Agriculture – During the interim, North Dakota agriculture groups met to find consensus on the expansion of animal agriculture in the state. Senate Agriculture and Veteran Affairs Committee Chair Larry Luick was part of a meeting this past week with North Dakota Farmers Union to discuss this same issue. “They’re worried that some of the big, giant food companies will come in and monopolize the whole state,” said Luick. “That isn’t possible if we put language in to restrict them in certain ways; we can have management practices that benefit local farmers.” The corporate farming issue has been a frequent issue in the legislature. The new soybean crush facilities coming to the region has renewed that conversation for this session. Luick, who farms at Fairmount, said county and township roads, pipelines and water issues will also get attention in his committee.
ND Energy Office Announced – The North Dakota Department of Commerce has created the North Dakota Energy and Economic Coordination Office. This office will streamline and coordinate North Dakota’s full energy portfolio.
SD Corn Comments – This week on South Dakota Corn Comments, South Dakota Corn Growers Association Executive Director DaNita Murray talks about the political atmosphere changes in state and federal legislature.
Freshman to Serve as Senate Ag Committe Vice Chair – Rob Kupec will serve as the vice chair of the Minnesota Senate Agriculture, Broadband, and Rural Development Committee. The freshman lawmaker from Moorhead looks forward to getting to work. “Right-to-repair legislation, ensuring farmers don’t get caught in bad situations when grain elevators go belly up, and making sure our ag industry is protected from climate change” are described as key agriculture issues. Kupec said he would like to continue the work former Senator Kent Eken and former Representative Paul Marquart began on increasing the Ag2School tax credit and eliminating income tax on social security in Minnesota. Listen to the full interview.
Walz Suspends Hour of Service – Minnesota Governor Tim Walz signed an executive order suspending the hours-of-service regulations for truck drivers transporting fuel. In a statement, Walz said it is important to keep propane delivery reliable and safe for all Minnesotans.
Ready for the New Legislative Session – MInnesota Farm Bureau Public Policy Director Pierce Bennett is excited to represent the organization’s farmer-members.”It will be a busy year with a fairly new state legislature in Minnesota and the Farm Bill going on in DC.” Previously, Bennett was part of the Livestock Marketing Association public policy team.
Taking Aim at Packer Concentration – Widespread drought tightened cattle supplies and pushed prices higher. R-CALF USA CEO Bill Bullard is excited beef prices are on the mend after years of low prices. “We can finally see our work for two decades come through in market prices. We’ve had two priorities, enforce anti-trust laws to promote a competitive market and put an end to wrongful promotion of imported beef.” Bullard says limiting the power of the four main packers could help encourage competition in the marketplace and keep profitable prices stable. “We have retailers and restaurants like Kroger’s, Arby’s, and Burger King jumping on the anti-trust case against the major packers.”
Breaking Even and Better – The largest expenditure for cattle producers is harvested forage and feed. Livestock Marketing Information Center Senior Economist Katelyn McCullock says livestock producers are at least breaking even this year with increased calf prices. “In 2022, we’ve calculated livestock producers are right above break-even and making progressively more money the next two years even with costs possibly increasing.” McCullock expects cull cow values to rise as well due to a lower total herd size and slaughter rates declining.
Avoid Calving Issues – Sire selection and paying attention to Estimated Progeny Differences are the key to avoiding calving problems. according to North Dakota State University Extension Veterinarian Dr. Gerald Stokka. “Once we understood the value of EPDs, the number of C-sections done in clinics has dramatically declined.” said Stokka. “I’m less concerned about growth rates especially out of first calf heifers, I’m more concerned whether we have a live calf or not.” Stokka also said that trying to underfeed a cow to avoid heavy birthweights in calves can actually cause more harm in the long run. “What you feed the cow with a calf in utero has lifelong consequences for that calf so it’s important to feed these cows right.”
Meat Trends to Watch in ’23 – Value will be the buzzword for in 2023. The Midan Meat Trends Report says the economy is pushing consumers to less expensive items in the meatcase. Others are buying premium meat products at the supermarket rather than dining out. There is a big focus on health and wellness with high protein diets in demand.
Job Opportunities in Agriculture – Click on the Job Opportunities in Agriculture tab on the Red River Farm Network website. Companies looking for high quality additions to their staff include Anheuser-Busch, Pioneer and True North Equipment. The Red River Farm Network promotes job opportunities online, on-air and in social media. For an effective way to reach prospective employees, contact firstname.lastname@example.org email@example.com.
Brazil Extends Ethanol Tariff Suspension – There’s good news from Brazil for the U.S. ethanol industry. Brazil is suspending the 20 percent ethanol import tariff that was scheduled to expire. The Renewable Fuels Association said it is happy to have extra time to find a permanent resolution.
Ten States Seek Year-Round E15 Use – Missouri is joining nine other Midwestern states asking for the ability to use E15 year-round. Minnesota and South Dakota are two of the other states seeking approval from the Environmental Protection Agency.
Soybean Checkoff Ready for the New Year – Missouri farmer Meagan Kaiser chairs the United Soybean Board and has priorities in place for the year ahead. “We continue to look at things like health and nutrition, infrastructure, efficiency, market access and innovation and technology. We want to make sure farmers can make efficient and data driven decisions to be more sustainable.”
Promoting Northern Grown Soybeans in Thailand – Sheldon, North Dakota farmer Dan Spiekermeier will be among a group from Northern Soy Marketing traveling to Thailand this month. This delegation will promote the use of northern grown soybeans for poultry and livestock feeding. Soybeans grown in the north typically have greater concentrations of amino acids that can be beneficial for animal agriculture. “Our nutritional bundle is just as good as the southern grown soybeans that typically have a higher crude protein content,” says Spiekermeier. Thailand is the second largest importer of U.S. soybeans in Southeast Asia and Spiekermeier sees even more potential for market growth.
Soil Fertility Minute – On this week’s Soil Fertility Minute, sponsored by the Agricultural Fertilizer Research and Education Council, Dr. Dan Kaiser joins us to talk about the pros and cons of biological soil fertility products.
Wheat Seed Decisions Coming in Earlier Than Ever – Wheat seed buying decisions have moved earlier and earlier in the year. “Farmers are planning their whole farm so they’re making their corn hybrid decision, soybean variety decision and wheat decision all at the same time,” explains WestBred Cereal Account Management Lead Jeff Koscelny. Koscelny encourages farmers to lock in that seed as soon as possible. “Supplies are really tight in eastern North Dakota and as we move west, the supplies of our key products, are getting tight too.”
Fungicides Deliver ROI – Fungicides are a standard part of the arsenal for specialty crop growers. BASF Technical Service Representative Jared Roskamp says the demand for fungicides is now growing for corn and soybeans. “We see fungicides as a growing business segment because a lot of growers have seen that return on investment and the protection against disease,” said Roskamp. “Just look at new diseases, like tar spot in corn, and growers are seeing more reasons to make that decision.” Tar spot in corn is expanding its presence in the Midwest. “Watch for little black specks to show up on the leaves and it typically happens near the tassel timing; it is a very aggressive disease.” Roskamp says farmers need to be proactive, rather than reactive when dealing with diseases like tar spot.
Tire Prices Expectet to Moderate – Tires have not been immune to supply chain and inflationary issues. “Prices have gone up like most things with inputs like oil and carbon black,” said Matt Frank, senior brand manager, Firestone Ag. “Going forward, I suspect we’ve seen the peak of prices. With the economy stabilizing and the supply chain improving, we feel like prices should start declining.”
At the Center of the Plate – The National Potato Expo will be held this week just outside of Denver. Minnesota native Jason Morse is a culinary consultant and chef who is now based in Colorado. Morse will be part of a cook-off with celebrity chefs, putting potato at the center of the plate. “Look at Expo as a way to come out a sharpen your saw, to get reinvigorated and maybe find a market for the potatoes you market and grow.” The Red River Farm Network will provide broadcast coverage from Potato Expo. This exclusive coverage is sponsored by the National Potato Council, Bayer CropScience, Gowan USA, AMVAC, AgCounty Farm Credit Services and Syngenta.
COFCO-Sinograin JV to Begin Operations – A joint venture set up by two state-owned Chinese grain companies will officially begin operations this month. COFCO and Sinograin established the China Enterprise United Grain Reserve Company in September. This new entity will manage grain reserves and help protect food security.
Mosaic Offers Two Biological Solutions – To this point, the crop nutrition focus has been on macro and micronutrients. Mosaic Global Agronomy Director Matt Sowder said the company’s philosophy is moving from advanced crop nutrition to a balanced approach. “There are a lot of people in the (biologicals) marketplace,” said Sowder. “There is a body of evidence to demonstrate what farmer expectations should be.” Sowder said the application methods for Mosaic’s BioPath and PowerCoat are ‘farmer friendly.’
Promoting Nutrient Use Efficiency – Agriculture has always been a business that deals with change, but Summit Nutrients President Jeremy Fountain says the pace of change is coming at us faster than ever. “The world is a different place today than it was just two years ago so as growers and retailers we have to find ways to be ready change.” Summit Nutrients uses technology to increase the efficiency of the crop nutrients. “We have the challenge of doing more with less already so what we do with nutrient use efficiency is the use of the portfolio of products that is used today to be more efficient when using them.”
Private Equity Firm Sells Milk Specialties Global – Milk Specialties Global is being acquired by a California-based private equity firm called Butterfly. MSG is based in Eden Prairie, Minnesota and manufactures whey and milk protein ingredients for the food and feed markets. Butterfly specializes in the food sector. Milk Specialties is now owned by another private equity firm, American Securities. The deal is expected to close in the first quarter.
Raise a Glass to Growers – North Dakota Corn Growers Association is offering an unusual perk for being a member. NDCGA Executive Director Brenda Elmer says they’ve partnered with a distillery to make custom bourbon. “We just launched this project this fall with Red Pine Distillery out of Grand Forks. Their specialty is using ag products and grains from the Red River Valley to make custom bourbon.” Each bottle of bourbon can be traced back to the corn field in North Dakota where it was grown. “It’s just a really cool thing to have something made from your own land and your own farm.”
Dry Bean Scene – A and L Peterson Farms Incorporated received the county and district award for Conservationist of the Year. Ryan Peterson joins us to talk about the award in this week’s Dry Bean Scene. The Dry Bean Scene is sponsored by the Northarvest Bean Growers Association.
New Coordinator Named for Black Sea Grain Initiative – The United Nations has named a new coordinator for the Black Sea Grain Initiative. A Kuwaiti vice admiral will manage grain shipments from Ukraine. A former World Food Program official has been in that role since August. This humanitarian grain lane was established by the UN, Turkey, Russia and Ukraine in July. More than 14 million tons of grain have been exported from Ukraine through this initiative.
A New Age for Minnesota FFA – Minnesota FFA is experiencing unprecedented growth. There’s currently 210 FFA chapters chartered in the state with more than a dozen schools working to add ag ed programs. “In the 30-plus years that I’ve been involved in agriculture education, I’ve never seen this type of growth,” said Val Aarsvold, executive director, Minnesota FFA Foundation. “We’ve added 20 new programs in the last three years with a dozen or so more for the next school year.” Aarsvold says the growing interest in developing trade skills for students is sparking some of the growth.
Last Week’s Trivia-There are 16 ounces in a pound. Jacob Downing of Cargill was the first to respond with the correct answer and is our weekly trivia winner. Runner-up honors belong to Josh Tjosaas of Minnesota Farm Business Management, Karlstad farmer Justin Dagen, retired Nelson County farmer Mike Naas and Kevin Praska of Stone’s Mobile Radio. The ‘first 20’ rounds out with Keith Bjorneby of Lone Wolf Farms, retired controller Evonne Wold, retired Grand Forks County Extension Agent Morrie Davidson, Nick Sinner of Northern Crops Institute, Randy Knudsvig of First State Bank, Dianne Bettin of LB Pork, Karmen Hardy of Proseed, Sherry Koch of Mosaic, Renville County farmer Mickey Peterson, Lawton farmer Dennis Miller, Eric Lahlum of Corteva Agriscience, Sara O’Toole of O’Toole Seed, Kristal Rick of MAGNO Seed and Kevin Schulz of Dakota Farmer/Nebraska Farmer.
This Week’s Trivia-Who is the majority shareholder of the Twitter social media platform? Hint: He is also the founder of Tesla. Send your answer to firstname.lastname@example.org.
|RRFN Upcoming Events|
|January 4 - January 5||Lake Region Extension Roundup - Devils Lake, ND|
|January 4 - January 5||Potato Expo - Aurora, CO|
|January 5 - January 6||MN Organic Conference - St. Cloud, MN|
|January 6 - January 11||American Farm Bureau Federation Convention - san Juan, Puerto RIco|
|January 7||North Dakota Angus Association Sale - Mandan, ND|
|January 9||NDSU Extension Women in Ag – Leading. Linking. Learning. - Underwood, North Dakota|
|January 10||Small Grains Update Meeting - Dilworth, MN|
|January 11||Norman County Ag Day - Ada, MN|
|January 11||Small Grains Update Meeting - Ada and Crookston, MN|
|January 12||Small Grains Update Meeting - Lancaster and Roseau, MN|
|January 12||MN Crop Improvement Association Annual Meeting - Fergus Falls, MN|
|January 13||Small Grains Update Meeting - St. Hilaire, MN|
|January 15 - January 17||ND Grain Dealers Association 110th Annual Convention|
|January 16||Small Grains Update Meeting - Morris, MN|
|January 17||FCS of Mandan TRIPLE UP Marketing Seminar - Dickinson and Mandan, ND|
|January 17 - January 19||Red River Basin Land & Water Int’l Summit - Winnipeg, MB|
|January 18||ND Dairy Convention - Bismarck, ND|
|January 18 - January 19||MN Ag Expo - Mankato, MN|
|January 18 - January 19||Precision Planting Winter Conference - Grand Forks, ND|
|January 18 - January 19||NDSU Feedlot School - Carrington, ND|
|January 18 - January 19||ND Grazing Lands Coalition Winter Conference - Bismarck, ND|
|January 20||Northarvest Bean Growers Ass’n Bean Day - Fargo, ND|
|January 20 - January 21||SD Farm Bureau Farm and Ranch Conference - Brookings, SD|
|January 21||SD Corn Conference - Sioux Falls, SD|
|January 24||Northern Pulse Growers Ass’n Convention - Minot, ND|
|January 24 - January 25||Soil Health Conference - Sioux Falls, SD|
|January 25||Farm Safety & Wellness Program - Ada, MN|
|January 25 - January 27||KMOT Ag Expo - Minot, ND|
|January 26 - January 28||Northern Plains Sustainable Ag Winter Conference - Fargo, ND|
|January 27 - January 28||NDFB 2023 Farm and Ranch Conference - Bismarck, ND|
|January 27 - January 28||MN Farm Bureau LEAP Conference - Hinckley, MN|
|January 27 - February 4||Black Hills Stock Show - Rapid City, SD|
|January 29||ND Gelbvieh Association Golden Rule Sale - Mandan, ND|
|January 29 - January 31||American Sugarbeet Growers Ass’n Annual Meeting - Washington DC|
|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.