READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Wednesday, August 19th…

Sponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

Appeals Court Rejects Dicamba Rehearing Request

The U.S. Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals this week declined a rehearing request on its June dicamba decision. The decision leaves Bayer, Corteva and BASF with one final legal option to overturn the ruling vacating registration of dicamba herbicides: appealing to the Supreme Court. On June 3, the court vacated the registration for Bayer’s XtendiMax, Corteva’s FeXapan and BASF’s Engenia, all dicamba-based herbicides. Last month, all three companies petitioned for a group of judges to rehear the case, known as a “rehearing in banc.” A statement from BASF to DTN says, “We are assessing additional legal options, including a challenge to the U.S. Supreme Court.” However, the ruling doesn’t apply to future registrations of dicamba herbicides, and the Environmental Protection Agency is reviewing whether or not to allow for its use in 2021. Earlier this month, a report from environmental groups stated, “EPA should not renew dicamba product registrations,” until further research shows dicamba formulations will not harm off-target plants.

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House Lawmakers Introduce Helping America’s Farmers Act

Lawmakers in the House of Representatives this week introduced the Helping America’s Farmers Act. The legislation would create a new economic injury disaster loan program at the Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency. Introduced by Representative Jahana Hayes, a Connecticut Democrat and Antonio Delgado, a New York Democrat, the bill is endorsed by the National Milk Producers Federation and Dairy Farmers of America. The bill would appropriate $10 billion for direct loans through the FSA, along with another $10 billion for a guaranteed loan program through FSA lenders, and $300 million for administrative costs. Under the new loan program, applicants would also be eligible for a $20,000 grant upon application, and can seek forgiveness for their loan based on demonstrated economic hardship. Application priority is given to farmers and ranchers located in the areas hit hardest by an economic disaster, as well as minority, veteran and women-owned operations. Representative Hayes says the legislation will get farmers “the help they so desperately need.”

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USDA NASS to Collect Additional Iowa Data for Crop Report

The Department of Agriculture will collect additional harvested acreage information for corn and soybeans in Iowa in preparation for the September 11 Crop Production report. USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service says corn and soybeans in Iowa have been impacted by the recent derecho (Deh-RAY-cho)  storm. According to Lance Honing of NASS, the additional data will help to better assess the full impact. If the newly collected data justifies any changes, NASS will publish updated harvested acreage estimates in the September report. The Iowa Department of Agriculture estimates the storm impacted approximately 14 million acres of crops. Iowa officials also say the storm damaged or destroyed 57 million bushels of licensed grain storage in the state. And, tens of millions of bushels of on-farm storage were also lost during the storm, which may create grain storage challenges as farmers prepare for harvest. President Donald Trump visited Iowa Tuesday, telling local officials, “We are going to help you recover.”

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USDA Awards Contracts for RFID Ear Tags

The U.S. Department of Agriculture recently awarded contracts to purchase up to eight million radio frequency identification ear tags. USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service says the RFID tags will help increase overall animal disease traceability in cattle and bison. The contract allows APHIS to purchase additional tags each year for up to five years. USDA Under Secretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Greg Ibach (EYE-baw) says, “This will not only help offset the costs of switching to RFID tags, but also help us more quickly respond to potential disease events.” USDA believes RFID devices will provide states and the cattle and bison industries with the best opportunity to rapidly contain the spread of high economic impact diseases. As part of its overall effort to increase traceability in cattle and bison, APHIS distributed more than 1.1 million RFID tags to 38 states between this past spring. Each state veterinarian distributes the tags in a way that best serves their industry.

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Appeals Court Rules in Favor of Farmobile in the Farmers Edge Lawsuit

The U.S. Eighth Circuit Court of Appeals this week unanimously ruled in favor of Farmobile in an appeal brought by Farmers Edge regarding secret theft, breach of contract and breach of loyalty.  Farmers Edge had sued Farmobile, along with its founders, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Nebraska. The circuit court found that the Nebraska Court ruled correctly in denying Farmers Edge relief. Specifically, the court determined that the facts did not support the remaining claims made by Farmers Edge. The lawsuit began in 2016 when Farmers Edge claimed Farmabile misappropriated trade secrets under Nebraska law and violated certain contract terms. As announced last week, Farmobile continues to enforce its patent in a lawsuit filed against Farmers Edge in the Federal Court of Canada. That case is set for trial beginning on April 19, 2021. Farmers Edge and Farmobile both provide farmers with data and field analysis options.

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Consumer Pandemic Shopping Trends Here to Stay

Purchasing in bulk and online are trends here to stay, according to new consumer-based research. A global study from Momentum Worldwide reveals that only 16 percent of shoppers said they would immediately go back to the way things were before the pandemic. The trends present challenges in marketing and packaging of consumer goods and grocery items. The survey found 84 percent of consumers now shop online. However, 76 percent say they miss casually browsing, even at the grocery store. The results also found 61 percent of consumers plan to do more cooking at home and 60 percent plan to eat healthier. The trends are changing, perhaps permanently, shopping experiences and expectations. The survey found 62 percent of consumers plan to buy more groceries online after the pandemic, and 59 percent say they will purchase more home goods online post-pandemic. Though, 25 percent of consumers say they will leave online grocery shopping after the pandemic.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

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By Brian Allmer - The BARN

Brian Allmer & the BARN are members of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB), the Colorado FFA Foundation, the Colorado 4H Foundation, the Colorado Farm Show Marketing Committee, 1867 Club Board Member, Denver Ag & Livestock Club Member, the Weld County Fair Board, the Briggsdale FFA Advisory Council, Briggsdale 4H Club Beef Leader & Founder / Coordinator of the Briggsdale Classic Open Jackpot Show.