Search Site   
Current News Stories
Views and opinions: Public access for hunters effort begins second year
Views and opinions: Limit impact of shutdowns to those who cause them
Views and opinions: Watching China, processing USDA data passed last week
Views and opinions: The founding farmers, what they learned
Views and opinions: Spring needs to bring two thaws, in snow and ag trade
Checkoff Report - February 20, 2019
Auction Reports - February 20, 2019
Sale Calander - February 20, 2019
Views and opinions: Will your farm be in the 97, or 3 percent, club?
Views and opinions: Fortitude to forge ahead will take you through hard times
Views and opinions: There’s majesty in all parts of U.S., but I like West best
News Articles
Search News  
Business Briefs - June 13, 2018

NCGA grant supports state educational events in beef

DENVER, Colo. — The National Corn Growers Assoc. (NCGA) is stepping up to support the education of U.S. beef producers in states around the country. The assistance is being provided through a grant program offered to state affiliates of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Assoc. (NCBA) that conduct Cattlemen’s Education Series events.

The Cattlemen’s Education Series is a collaborative effort to advance grassroots education on topics that improve cattle production efficiency, profitability and sustainability. The partnership builds on other successful programs currently in NCBA’s Producer Education portfolio, such as Stockmanship & Stewardship, Cattlemen’s College and the Cattlemen’s Webinar Series.

NCBA state affiliates will be eligible to apply for grants ranging in value from $2,000-$4,000, depending on a variety of factors, including event participation and membership numbers. Topics eligible for grants will be developed as a partnership between NCBA and NCGA.

Lowe and Young recognized by Krone for retail sales volume

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — Krone NA announced that Lowe & Young of Wooster, Ohio, has been recognized as its highest Retail Sales Volume Dealer in the U.S. for fiscal year 2017. Krone is a global leader in the manufacture and sales of hay and forage equipment, doing business in 40 countries.

Earning this prestigious recognition as a retail sales leader for Krone takes significant effort, as each year more than 200 equipment dealers compete for this distinctive recognition. To be considered for this award, the dealerships must have exceptional sales, service and parts departments.

Lowe and Young carries the Krone forage equipment product line, including the BiG X forage harvesters, BiG M mower conditioners, BiG Pack large square balers, Comprima Round Balers, Disc Mowers and Mower Conditioners, KW Tedders and Swadro Rakes.

Aggressively Organic takes home Food+City Challenge Prize


INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Aggressively Organic, Inc., a public benefits corporation and intellectual property company focused on agricultural bioscience technology, was named both a Challenge Prize Session winner and People’s Choice winner at the Food+City Challenge Prize competition during South by Southwest (SXSW), winning $10,000 and top recognition among supply chain startup companies.

The Food+City Challenge Prize is an international competition among early-stage startups that encourages innovation in the urban food system. For the first time, the fourth annual Challenge Prize competition took place at SXSW 2018 as part of the Startups and Tech track.

Nearly 100 applicants from 14 countries applied – including Aggressively Organic – with only 15 finalist spots available to deliver a four-minute pitch in front of a panel of judges. Of the three sessions, Indiana’s own Aggressively Organic earned the Food+City Challenge Prize for Session Two as well as the People’s Choice Award, making the agricultural bioscience company the first finalist ever to take home both awards.

AGCO's brands win Red Dot Design Award for 2018

DULUTH, Ga. — AGCO has been awarded two Red Dot Design Awards for its IDEAL Combine and the Valtra A4 Series Tractors. The Red Dot Design competition is one of the largest and most respected design competitions in the world. More than 6,300 submissions from 59 countries entered this year's contest and were evaluated by a jury consisting of 40 independent design experts from around the globe.

The IDEAL combine and the Valtra A4 Series were both recognized in the category “Commercial Vehicles.” IDEAL is a newly developed combine that unites brand-new designs and cutting-edge technologies to empower farmers across the world to be more productive and to feed a growing world population. Valtra’s 4th generation A Series is a completely newly designed tractor featuring a new technical design, a brand-new cab design and multiple chassis options.

The Red Dot Design Competition was launched in the 1950s and awards are given in three categories: Product Design, Communication Design and Design Concept.

Cattle producers host successful 2018 Michigan Beef Expo

EAST LANSING, Mich. — High-quality cattle, friendly competition and rapid bidding made the 29th annual Michigan Beef Expo a success for Michigan’s cattle industry. The Expo included seedstock shows and sales for the Angus, Hereford, Chianina, Maine-Anjou, Shorthorn, Simmental and all other registered breeds (AORB’s).


The MSU Block & Bridle Club hosted a youth livestock judging competition with 100 youth participating along with the MSU livestock judging team, and a Junior Steer and Heifer show with over 500 cattle entered. MI Shows sponsored a youth education contest with over 40 individuals competing in essay, photograph, graphic design, stockman or salesmanship contests.

Breeders consigned 148 lots, including bulls, females, embryos and semen from breeders in Michigan, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas and Ohio. The 2018 Supreme Champion Female is Angus Lot 112, KB Forever Lady E19, an open Angus heifer consigned by KB Angus of Merritt, Mich.

The 2018 Supreme Champion Bull – AORB Lot 705, 3G Double Booked 6116D, a Limousin Flex October 2016 bull – was consigned by 3G Ranch of Kendallville, Ind. Exhibitors of the Supreme Champion bull and female receive $500 courtesy of Rupp Seeds.

The high-selling female was Angus Lot 112, the Supreme Champion; she sold for $7,000 to Craig Pollington of Marion, Mich. The high-selling bull was Simmental Lot 443, JDCC MS In Dew Time 219B, consigned by DeLong Cattle Co. of Cass City, Mich., and purchased by William Pardee of Concord, Mich., for $6,000.

Total consignments at the Michigan Beef Expo grossed $299,750. The bulls averaged $2,425 on 48 lots and 85 females averaged $2,016, embryo lots averaged $925 and semen lots averaged $300.

Breed champions

Angus: Lot 112 was the Champion Angus female. The Champion Angus bull was awarded to Lot 117 of Hutchings Angus Farm of Bellevue, Mich.

Chianina: The Champion Chi female lot 203 was consigned by Brunke Chiangus Farm of St. Joseph, Mich., and the Champion bull, Lot 202, was exhibited by KVO Chiangus of Hamilton, Mich.

Hereford: Lot 304, exhibited by TCG Cattle Co. of Niles, Mich., was the Champion Hereford female and Sunnyside Stock Farms of Edgerton, Ohio, exhibited Lot 321, the Champion Hereford bull.

Maine-Anjou: Fox Shorthorns of Kanawha, Iowa, exhibited the Champion Maine-Anjou female Lot 607, and Muir Cattle Co. of Waynesfield, Ohio, exhibited the Champion Maine-Anjou bull Lot 603.

Shorthorn: Lot 509, Champion Shorthorn purebred female, was consigned by Dingman Farms of Bellevue, Mich. The Champion Shorthorn Plus Lot 518 was exhibited by Woodland Farms of Deckerville, Mich., and Champion Low Plus female Lot 515 was consigned by Holbrook Show Cattle of Hastings, Mich.

The Champion Shorthorn bull Lot 504 was exhibited by Woodland Farms of Deckerville, Mich. Dingman Farms of Bellevue, Mich., exhibited Champion Shorthorn Plus bull Lot 505.

Simmental: The Champion Simmental female Lot 443 was consigned by DeLong Cattle Co. of Cass City, Mich., and Champion Simmental bull Lot 420 was consigned by WXC Cattle Co. of Delton, Mich.

All Other Registered Breeds: Lot 712, consigned by Sugarbush Limousin of Allen, Wis., was the Champion Limousin and Champion AORB female. Champion Red Angus Lot 718 and Champion Charolais Lot 717 were both consigned by Walnut Springs Farms of Hopkins, Mich.

Champion Simmental female Lot 720 was consigned by JMR Show Stock of Hastings, Mich. The Champion AORB bull was Lot 705.

SUPREME CHAMPION FEMALE KB Forever Lady E19, an open Angus heifer, was consigned by KB Angus of Merritt, Mich.

SUPREME CHAMPION BULL 3G Double Booked 6116D, a Limousin Flex, was consigned by 3G Ranch of Kendallville, Ind.

Diamond V at 75: New manufacturing facility springing up

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa — As the structural steel rises at Diamond V’s South Plant 2, the company’s vision of global growth brings greatly expanded manufacturing capacity.

Construction on Diamond V’s 97,000 square-foot plant expansion resumed with the spring weather at the corporate campus and global headquarters on 60th Ave. SW in Cedar Rapids. The initial investment in the expansion – announced in 2016 – is $30 million. When all phases of the expansion are complete, the total cost is expected to exceed $70 million.

All the structural steel for the expansion is expected to be in place by the end of June and the new plant will be enclosed by the end of September. Machinery will be brought in around February and March of 2019 with the goal of being operational starting in May 2019.

When all systems are installed, the expansion is expected to double the current production capacity at Diamond V’s south manufacturing facilities, which includes the current 126,000 square-foot plant. The plant expansion is expected to create nine new jobs initially with the potential for 26 new jobs in the next five years. Diamond V also operates its north plant on G Ave. NW in Cedar Rapids.

Indiana FB helps launch new county agriculture programs

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. — Indiana Farm Bureau (INFB) issued five county development grants to support new or expanded county Farm Bureau programs, activities or events that enhance the promotion or provide education about agriculture. The county Farm Bureaus that will receive financial assistance for programming this year are Rush, Jay, Decatur, Clinton and Pulaski.

Each recognized county Farm Bureau presented a new or expanded programming idea to INFB. The grant committee reviewed and approved the funds based on financial need and the potential impact of the program in reaching organizational goals.

Rush County was awarded $1,500 to launch the Benefit Dinner in Memory of Roger Cain, who died in a farm accident in 2016. The event, organized by the county’s young farmers, will be held to fund safety trainings or grain bin extraction equipment for Rush County.

Jay County was awarded $1,500 to launch the After School Cooking Club for elementary students. The cooking club program will take place at General Shanks Elementary. Students will learn the basics of healthy cooking and information about where their food comes from.

Decatur County was awarded $840 to launch its Ag Breakfast and Fundraiser. Proceeds from the breakfast will go to Farmers Feeding the Flock, an annual program in which the proceeds from 34 acres of soybeans fields are donated to the community’s meal center for the hungry.

Clinton County was awarded $750 for the Clinton County 4-H Goat Club. The grant will assist with revitalization efforts for the youth club, including necessary grooming supplies and educational resources for 4-H participants to ensure proper fitting and grooming of the goats.

Pulaski County was awarded $600 to launch its Life Cycle of a Chicken program. The program will be created for local school children to learn about animal agriculture by seeing the life cycle of a chicken in real time – starting with the egg incubation and ending with the chick being hatched.

INFB’s program development grants are issued annually. All county Farm Bureaus are eligible to apply for up to $1,500 in funding each year.

Novus International increases price for methionine products

ST. CHARLES, Mo. — Novus International, Inc. announced an 8 percent price increase for its methionine hydroxy analog feed supplement products, effective immediately.

These products include ALIMET, MHA and MHA SP feed supplements. Prices quoted will take into consideration local market conditions. All existing contracts will be honored.

Tennessee Agriculture Enterprise Fund recipients noted

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Nine more Tennessee businesses will now have the opportunity to grow and positively impact rural economies through grants provided by the Agriculture Enterprise Fund (AEF).

State Agriculture Commissioner Jai Templeton and Economic and Community Development Assistant Commissioner Amy New joined local, state and business leaders in Clay County to announce the second group of recipients of funding through the new program. This year’s total funding currently adds up to more than $767,000, of the $1 million set aside for the AEF.

A product of the Governor’s Rural Task Force, the AEF is an incentive program that facilitates agricultural development in Tennessee. It provides assistance to new and expanding Tennessee agriculture and food businesses, particularly in rural counties.

Successful grant recipients must demonstrate a strong potential for impact on local farm income, access to markets, increased capacity or agricultural innovation. Priority is given to businesses located in at-risk or distressed counties. They are:

•Anderson Meats and Processing, Smith County, building a new meat processing facility

•Back Country Harvesters, Bledsoe County, new business for firewood and bulk shavings

•Blankenship Sawmill, Bledsoe County, upgrading a sawmill

•Circle S Farms, Wilson County, expanding a meat processing facility

•East Tennessee Feed and Seed, Monroe County, adding a storage and mixing facility

•Franks Cedar Log & Lumber, Hardin County, creating new shavings product

•G.F. Hardwoods, Clay County, improving delivery efficiency for hardwood lumber

•Potts Processing, Bedford County, expanding a meat processing facility

•Villa Nove Vineyard, Johnson County, adding a farm winery and selling directly to the public

Midwest Seed Genetics expansion and growth continues

KENTLAND, Ind. — Midwest Seed Genetics continues its growth with four senior managers joining the team. They are: Todd Claussen as director, Sales Agronomy; Chandra Edwards as senior operations manager; Wayne Hoener as Soybean Product manager; and Rodd Whitney as senior recruiting manager.

Claussen was formerly the director of Agronomy & Technical Services for Landus Cooperatives of Iowa. He has also held management positions with Monsanto Co. and JC Robinson Seed Co.

Edwards was formerly with Wilbur-Ellis, where she held brand manager Integra and operations manager Seed responsibilities. She previously worked for E-Markets.

Hoener was most recently vice president of sales for Schillinger Genetics, Inc. He also held management positions with Asgrow Seed Co. and Channel Bio Corp. And Whitney was formerly founding principal for One Purpose People Agricultural Recruiting. Prior to that, he held senior positions at Monsanto and Channel Bio.

Partners award grants to 50 veterans for farm projects

BRENTWOOD, Tenn. — Tractor Supply Co. honored 50 veteran farmers nationwide during an Armed Forces Day shopping event on May 19, in partnership with Farmer Veteran Coalition (FVC).

The rural retailer donated $50,000 in awards through FVC’s Farmer Veteran Fellowship Fund, a grant program that offers assistance to veterans in the early stages of their farming operations, culminating in a one-day shopping event across the country.

Tractor Supply provided 50 Fellowship awardees with a $1,000 gift card to purchase critical items needed to support their agriculture business. Veterans were paired with knowledgeable Tractor Supply team members for a personalized shopping experience tailored to their unique farming needs.

This year, FVC, the nation’s largest nonprofit assisting military veterans embarking on agriculture careers, distributed a total of $300,000 to 125 recipients through the Fellowship Fund. Rather than distributing money directly to the veterans, recipients use third-party vendors to provide items they have identified will make a crucial difference in the launch of their farm business.

In addition to monetary support, the program offers one-on-one mentorship support to each recipient. Since the Fellowship Fund’s beginning in 2011, the program has awarded grants valued at more than $1.9 million to 500 veterans pursuing an occupation in agriculture following their service.

DuPont, ADM open biobased FDME pilot facility in Illinois

DECATUR, Ill. — DuPont Industrial Biosciences and Archer Daniels Midland Co. (ADM) announced the opening of the world’s first biobased furan dicarboxylic methyl ester (FDME) pilot production facility in Decatur.

The plant is the centerpiece of a longstanding collaboration that will help bring a greater variety of sustainably sourced biomaterials into the lives of consumers. Nearly 1/10 of the world’s oil is used to make the plastic products we use every day. FDME is a molecule derived from fructose that can be used to create a variety of biobased chemicals and materials, including plastics, that are ultimately more cost-effective, efficient and sustainable than their fossil fuel-based counterparts.

One of the first FDME-based polymers under development by DuPont is polytrimethylene furandicarboxyate (PTF). PTF is a 100 percent renewable polymer that, in bottling applications, can be used to create plastic bottles that are lighter-weight, more sustainable and better performing.

New info focuses on Foods and Veterinary Medicine research

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Scientific expertise and research are key foundations of the work conducted within the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s (FDA) Foods and Veterinary Medicine (FVM) program. Human and animal food safety, animal health and nutritional science are primary drivers of FVM’s research efforts.

FDA has created a new webpage that provides a central source of information for scientists and other stakeholders around the world interested in FVM’s research priorities, activities, reporting and tracking. It includes information about the Science and Research Steering Committee, an inter-center body that coordinates FVM’s science and research activities to maximize resources and impact and avoid duplication of effort.

Among the many resources also found on this page are links to FDA’s analytical laboratory methods used for regulatory food and feed testing. The site may be accessed at

‘Redhead Ducks’ selected for Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp


COLUMBUS, Ohio — The artwork of wildlife artist Jocelyn Beatty won first place in the 2018 Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp Design Competition, according to the Ohio Department of Natural Resources (DNR). Beatty’s painting of a pair of redheads will appear on the Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp issued in the fall of 2019.

The winning entry was selected from a field of 12 original paintings. Last year's winner, Daniel Allard, will see his painting of ring-necked ducks appear on the 2018 Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamp.

Beatty, of West Middlesex, Pa., won the competition for the first time. This year, second-place honors went to Jeffery Klinefelter (the 2016 competition winner) of Indiana with his painting of redheads. The third-place entry was by Adam Grimm (the 2013 competition winner) of South Dakota with his painting of mallards.

Approximately 25,000 Ohio Wetlands Habitat Stamps were purchased last year, according to the DNR Division of Wildlife. Proceeds from sales help fund vital wetland habitat restoration projects in Ohio. Such habitats are important to many resident wildlife species including several that are state-endangered.

Ohioans are encouraged to participate in next year’s competition. For complete contest entry information, email Tim Daniel at

CME Group declares quarterly dividend for shareholders

CHICAGO, Ill. — CME Group, Inc. declared a second-quarter dividend of 70 cents per share, payable June 25, 2018, to shareholders of record as of June 8.

CME also announced the preliminary shareholder voting results from its 2018 annual meeting. Shareholders elected Terrence Duffy, Timothy Bitsberger, Charles Carey, Dennis Chookaszian, Ana Dutra, Martin Gepsman, Larry Gerdes, Daniel Glickman, Deborah Lucas, Alex Pollock, Terry Savage, William Shepard, Howard Siegel and Dennis Suskind each for a one-year term expiring in 2019.

They also ratified the appointment of Ernst & Young LLP as the independent registered public accounting firm for 2018 and       approved, on an advisory basis, the compensation of named executive officers.

In addition, the company's Class B-2 shareholders elected Ronald Pankau and David Wescott, and Class B-3 shareholders elected Elizabeth Cook, each for a one-year term expiring in 2019. The official results and voting percentages for each of these proposals were to be disclosed in a report filed with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

First Farmers board declares a two-for-one stock split

CONVERSE, Ind. — First Farmers Financial Corp., the parent company of First Farmers Bank & Trust, announced the following results for ballot measures voted on at its annual stockholder meeting on May 8:

•The reelection of director-nominees Dr. Freddie Barnard, John O'Donnell and Christopher Norris to three-year terms

•Approval of the proposed amendment to the Articles of Incorporation to increase the number of authorized shares of Common Stock from 5 million to 10 million

•Approval of the proposed amendment to Article IX, Section 1, of the Articles of Incorporation providing that amendment or repeal of the Articles require the shareholder vote specified in the Indiana Business Corporation Law.

Following the annual stockholders meeting the board of directors declared a two-for-one stock split of its common stock. The two-for-one split is payable June 15, 2018, to its common stockholders of record at the close of business on June 8. The additional shares will be distributed by the company's transfer agent, Computershare.

The company currently has 3,582,467 shares of common stock outstanding. After the stock split, the number of shares of common stock outstanding will increase to 7,164,934.

Corteva, Monsanto reach licensing agreement on insect control

WILMINGTON, Del. — Corteva Agriscience, Agriculture Division of DowDuPont, and Monsanto Co. announced the completion of a licensing agreement for next-generation technology for insect control in corn for the United States and Canada that will expand options for farmers fighting corn rootworm, dubbed the “billion-dollar bug” for the damage it causes.

Corteva will receive a license to stack Monsanto’s Corn Rootworm III and MON89034 traits with its insect control traits. This agreement enables the development of the next generation of insect control technology for above- and belowground insect pests, and will be offered with the Enlist herbicide-tolerant trait for corn.

Financial details of the agreement are not being disclosed. Pending applicable regulatory reviews, it will be offered with the Enlist tolerant trait for corn, which provides tolerance to new 2,4-D choline, and FOP herbicides in addition to the base glyphosate tolerance.

Businesses and customers to benefit from new state lab

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Julius T. Johnson State Metrology Laboratory at the Tennessee Department of Agriculture officially opened May 17 with a ribbon-cutting ceremony and dedication.

The construction of the facility is a realization of the longtime vision of many key individuals, including former Commissioner of Agriculture Julius Johnson. The expansive laboratory includes the most current equipment and testing capabilities to ensure fairness in commerce. Businesses that depend upon certified scales, meters and temperature-measuring devices significantly benefit from the services that are available.

With more than 11,000 square feet of office and laboratory space, the lab is designed to support the testing and calibration of mass from 1 milligram to 7,000 pounds, volume from 5 to 1,500 gallons, grain moisture measurements and thermometry. For more information about the lab, visit

WD-40 searching for trade professionals to advise on products

SAN DIEGO, Calif. — WD-40 Co. is recruiting members in the automotive, construction, farming, maintenance, repair and operations fields to provide input on new WD-40 Brand products and uses, and to learn how to further help users get the job done right.

This initiative is part of a remastered PRO Board program, which serves as a way for WD-40 to hear unbiased feedback from trade professionals. In order to most effectively partner with members, the PRO Board is launching three tiers of partnership: member, ambassador and master. Each tier receives different promotions and provides unique opportunities for users to give valuable feedback, improve industry tools, make some money and get great WD-40 products along the way.

For more information, a full summary of benefits and further explanation of the three-tiered system, visit and if interested in joining WD-40 Co.’s PRO Board, email

USPOULTRY releases collaborative video on EPA inspections

TUCKER, Ga. — The U.S. Poultry & Egg Assoc. (USPOULTRY) is releasing a video that demonstrates what poultry and egg farms can expect if their farms are inspected by the U.S. EPA. To ensure the information is accurate and beneficial, USPOULTRY collaborated with EPA personnel to develop and produce the video.

Titled Why EPA and the States Inspect Farms, the video features reasons why a farm may be inspected, how the farmer should prepare for the inspection and how the inspection will likely be structured. Additionally, it provides insight to what inspectors look for when analyzing and addressing issues related to local water quality and provides information on assistance available to poultry and egg producers to address water quality issues.

The video can be viewed on USPOULTRY’s YouTube Channel at

New Crossville Forestry Work Center opens in Tennessee

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — The Tennessee Department of Agriculture opened a new Division of Forestry work center in Crossville on May 23 with a tree-planting ceremony and open house.

The work center consolidates three Forestry offices into one centralized location that will save costs, improve workflow efficiency and provide a place for Forestry personnel to store and maintain wildland firefighting equipment. The building also houses a call center for burn permit requests and space to host outreach and educational events for the community.

Area Forester Brad Canfield is based at the new work center to assist woodland owners with property stewardship, including technical assistance, forest planning assistance, cost-share assistance, forest health assessments and forestry information. Visit for more information.

USPOULTRY family farm environmental award competition open

TUCKER, Ga. — The U.S. Poultry & Egg Assoc. (USPOULTRY) is accepting nominations for the 2019 Family Farm Environmental Excellence Award. This recognizes exemplary environmental stewardship by family farmers engaged in poultry and egg production.

Those eligible for the award include any family-owned poultry grower or egg producer supplying product to a USPOULTRY member or an independent producer who is a USPOULTRY member. Nominations are due Oct. 1.

Nominations for the 2019 competition must be made by a USPOULTRY member or an affiliated state poultry association by completing the application provided by USPOULTRY. Each integrator or egg processor may nominate one grower or producer for each processing facility in each state supporting their operations.

All semi-finalists will receive a trip that covers travel expenses and hotel accommodations for two nights to attend a special awards ceremony during the 2019 International Poultry Expo, part of the International Production & Processing Expo (IPPE) in Atlanta. Each will also receive a Family Farm Environmental Excellence Award sign to display near the entrance of their farm.

The overall winner of each region will be named at the Animal Agriculture Sustainability Summit, held in conjunction with IPPE, on Feb. 12. Each regional winner will also receive a $1,000 cash award.

Competition details are available at