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Agriculture

Ten Years of Potential Losses for 6 Row Crops? – Commentary

Over the last 3 weeks we looked at the USDA Agricultural Projections to 2026 for corn, soybeans, and wheat. We used those projections to calculate the profit/loss per acre for the average US farmer for each of the 3 crops for the 10-year period from 2017 to 2026. For corn, the loss per acre for the 10-year period was $867 per planted acre. The cumulative loss for soybeans over the same period would be $314 per acre while for wheat the loss would be $980

H7N9 influenza mutating quickly

China reported 96 human infections and 47 deaths linked to H7N9 avian influenza last month, and scientists at Hong Kong University say the virus readily mutates and has rapidly developed into a form that kills chickens quickly, posing a threat to the poultry industry. "I think this virus poses the greatest threat to humanity than any other in the past 100 years," said Guan Yi, one of the world's leading virologists.

Public thinks Des Moines Water Works was right to sue counties

The public would appear to have made up its mind about the Des Moines Water Works lawsuit against Buena Vista, Calhoun and Sac counties over nitrate pollution of the Raccoon River. The Des Moines Register’s Iowa Poll reported Sunday that 60% of those surveyed believe the water works was right to sue drainage districts in the three counties for discharging polluted water into the river. Urban residents, small towners and even rural dwellers all show majority support for the water works position.

As hog feedlots grow, neighbors ask: What about our rights?

A bitter three-year legal battle between a Todd County hog farm and neighbors forced out of their homes by foul smells has become a flash point in the larger fight over Minnesota’s expanding pork business and the power of rural residents to protect their tranquil way of life. The struggle has spilled over into the state Legislature, where pork producers are trying to limit so-called nuisance suits brought by feedlot neighbors.Together they illustrate how dramatically rural life in Minnesota has changed as farms grow bigger and more mechanized.

Change to Idaho’s field burning program heads to EPA for approval

A proposed change to Idaho’s field burning program has been approved by state regulators and lawmakers and will now go to the Environmental Protection Agency for a final OK.  The change, which is meant to avoid a major reduction in allowable burn days for farmers, is opposed by some environmental and public health groups but supported by farm organizations.Farmers testified in favor of a bill that makes the amendment during Idaho’s recent legislative session and lawmakers supported it by a combined vote of 91-12.Sen.

Bird flu redirects trade flow of U.S. chicken, eggs, grains

Global outbreaks of bird flu in poultry have altered the flow of U.S. chicken meat, eggs and grain around the world, adding to challenges faced by domestic exporters and giving a leg up to Brazil, which has so far escaped the disease. Different strains of avian flu have been detected across Asia, Europe, Africa and in the United States in recent months, leading to the culling of millions of birds and a flurry of import restrictions on eggs and chicken meat.U.S. grain traders such as Bunge Ltd and Cargill Inc have lost business because poultry deaths have reduced feed demand.

Convoys and social media come to rescue after wildfires

Add instant communications to generosity and hard work, and what do you get? America's farmers and ranchers respond to the wildfire devastation in Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, and Colorado. While the national media response was quiet, local press and farmers' social media took the story and ran. Simultaneously, farmers in other parts of the country started organizing relief efforts. With little national notice, farmers around the country have been sending thousands of truckloads of hay and supplies to burned-out ranchers. Social media has been the key to this volunteer effort of relief.

Washington dairy sued over Clean Water Act

A Lower Valley dairy is being sued over claims that it has violated the federal Clean Water Act for years, including contributing to the impact of a manure-related flood in the Outlook area earlier this year.The lawsuit against Snipes Mountain Dairy was filed Tuesday in U.S. District Court in Yakima.The plaintiffs are Community Association for Restoration of the Environment, commonly known as CARE, and Friends of Toppenish Creek. Both nonprofits have been active critics of dairy practices in the Lower Valley.

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