NATIONAL AG NEWS SPONSORED BY THE AMERICAN FARM BUREAU FEDERATION

National Ag News for May 5, 2022

#SoyHelp to Manage Farm Stress

The American Soybean Association, the United Soybean Board, and soybean states want to help farmers who might need help managing the stress of life on the farm. This May is Mental Health Month. The soy community will continue its proactive communications campaign to combat farm stress by offering #SoyHelp. The groups have researched an updated range of options that can be found on the soygrowers.com website year-round. Those options include national mental health resources like crisis centers and suicide hotlines. There are ag-specific resources for farmers and farm families, both national and by soy states. “We want these resources to resonate regardless of age, location, race, gender, or the circumstances that have led to needing a hand,” says Brad Doyle, president of the American Soybean Association. The resources include links to self-assessments, professional services, local health care facilities, hotlines for urgent needs, and chat and text lines for instant access.

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Ukraine Facing Grain Storage Crunch

A sharp fall in exports resulting from the Russian invasion is causing a significant shortage of storage facilities in Ukraine for the 2022-2023 season. Analyst APK-Inform says that Ukraine is getting forced to export grain by train over its western border or from smaller ports along the Danube River. APK-Inform says that Ukraine’s exports may total just 45.5 million tons of the 2021 record-harvest total of 86 million tons. Reuters says grain and oilseed stocks at the end of the current season may reach an all-time high of 21.3 million tons. That volume is 4.2 times higher than in the previous season and won’t allow Ukraine to release a significant share of its storage capacity for any new harvest that comes in. Ukraine is typically a major grain and oilseed grower for the world, but exports have dropped sharply. Ukraine exported 763,000 tons in April compared to 2.8 million tons at the same time last year.

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Winter Wheat Resiliency Getting Tested by Drought, High Winds

The major winter wheat-growing regions in the U.S. face the significant possibility of below-average yields. DTN says that’s because drought intensified through the Plains this spring, and summer forecasts don’t show much relief ahead. A dry fall, winter, and spring combined with winds over 60 mph have pushed the winter wheat to the limit. DTN Meteorologist John Baranick (Ba-RA-nick) says overall conditions are poor from Nebraska through western Kansas and into West Texas. The region’s lower precipitation trend dates back to late in the summer of 2021. Precipitation stayed low through the fall and winter, while spring storm systems stayed to the north. Persistent high winds have only made things harder for the wheat crop. As active spring storms swung north across the western U.S., they sent strong, dry winds into the Plains. Baranick says, “Strong winds combined with the dryness have caused lots of blowing dust and buried some of the wheat.”

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Milk Producers Look Forward to White House Nutrition Conference

The National Milk Producers Federation says it’s looking forward to the first White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health in over 50 years. The conference goals are to end hunger, increase healthy eating and physical activity, and decrease the prevalence of diet-related diseases in the country. “Dairy products, and the 13 essential nutrients they provide, are a key ingredient in this effort,” says NMPF President and CEO Jim Mulhern. “Diets that include dairy help to lower risk for cardiovascular diseases, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.” Dairy is also a critical source of calcium, potassium, and vitamin D, three of the four nutrients the public doesn’t get enough of because dairy is under-consumed across all age groups. “We look forward to working with the White House and public and private partners toward advancing these incredibly important goals,” Mulhern adds. The White House and USDA say the conference will take place this fall.

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NACD Applauds CRP Announcement

The National Association of Conservation Districts was pleased to hear that USDA accepted offers of more than two million acres in Conservation Reserve Program enrollment. “We applaud USDA and commend them for their leadership in continuing to administer this critical program,” says NACD President Michael Crowder. “CRP is a voluntary program and a significant component to conservation that, over the years, has played a key role in restoring the environment and ensuring the sustainability of our agricultural lands.” The organization says CRP is a critical tool in USDA’s conservation program efforts. “NACD is pleased that more than two million acres have been accepted through CRP and looks forward to USDA continuing its excellent stewardship of this program,” says NACD CEO Jeremy Peters. “CRP plays a key component to conservation, and we are excited to see enrollment options become available to as many eligible producers as possible, particularly those that manage vulnerable lands.”

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NCGA BeSure! Campaign Promotes BMPs

As the planting season is underway, the National Corn Growers Association launched its fourth-annual BeSure! Initiative. The national campaign is designed to promote best management practices when applying insecticides. Ag stakeholders appreciate how seed treatments and other products increase yields and boost revenue, but they also are committed to protecting bees and other wildlife. Some of the BMPs for growers include following directions on the label for appropriate storage, use, and disposal practices. When planting treated seed, use advanced seed flow lubricants that minimize dust. Some of the applicator practices include complying with all regulations when using registered pesticide products and ensuring proper employee training prior before application. Applicators should properly dispose of any unused product, rinse water, or seed treatment by following the label disposal instructions to minimize any potential environmental impact. For more information on best management practices to protect crops and wildlife while handling insecticides, go to growingmatters.org.

By Tucker Allmer - The BARN

Tucker 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.