~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma's latest farm and ranch news
Your Update from Ron Hays of RON for Wednesday November 4, 2009A service of Johnston Enterprises, P & K Equipment/ P & K Wind Energy and American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company!
-- Issue 2 Sails to Victory- HSUS Vows New Campaign
-- Climate Change Markup Begins- Without GOP Members of the EPW Committee
-- Day Two of the Governor's Statewide Water Conference is Today
-- Sorghum Industry Looking for Grassy Weed Control Answers
-- Farm Bureau Asks Supreme Court to Overturn Clean Water Rule Revision
-- Know Your Farmer- Know Your Food Hits Facebook
-- Unwanted Pesticide Disposal Sites Set for November
-- Let's Check the Markets!
Here's your morning farm news headlines from the Director of Farm Programming for the Radio Oklahoma Network, Ron Hays. We are pleased to have American Farmers & Ranchers Mutual Insurance Company as a regular sponsor of our daily update- click here to go to their AFR web site to learn more about their efforts to serve rural America!
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Issue 2 Sails to Victory- HSUS Vows New Campaign
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Unofficial voting results indicate Ohio voters gave their approval to Issue 2, the ballot measure to amend the state constitution and create a livestock care standards board. With 99.99 % of the precincts reporting, 63.65% of Ohio voters (1,958,646 people) have voted to approve Issue 2, while 36.35% or 1,118,484 voters, have voted "no."
The constitutional amendment will create a state Livestock Care Standards Board. The 13-member board, comprised mostly of farmers, veterinarians and agricultural industry leaders, will create and implement livestock care guidelines. We have audio of this victory of Issue 2 as colleague Stewart Doan of Agri-Pulse has comments from both sides of this battle that could be the model for similar boards in other states in an effort to keep radical animal rights groups from dictating specific animal husbandry practices at the ballot box.
Click on the link below and you can hear our audio report- as well as read the statements of both the coalition that promoted Issue 2 as well as a statement attributed to Wayne Pacelle of HSUS on the need to spend money and pursue "real reform" in the form of a ballot initiative that would still dictate animal care standards they deem correct, bypassing this newly created Animal Care Standards Board.
Climate Change Markup Begins- Without GOP Members of the EPW Committee
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Despite a significant number of empty chairs, the Senate Environment and Public Works committee took about two hours of opening statements Tuesday, as the panel began Markup of the Clean Energy Jobs and American Power act. Chairman Barbara Boxer termed the session a business meeting, a term that permits markup despite the absence of at least two Republicans at the table.
Committee Republicans followed through on a threat to boycott the session, saying they won't begin to work on the bill until they see a full cost analysis of the measure, which would cap greenhouse gas emissions and establish a market for trading government-issued pollution allowances.
One Republican, George Voinovich of Ohio, did appear at the committee meeting, offering a lengthy plea to Boxer to delay the markup until the EPA completes a cost analysis that it says would take about five weeks. Voinovich said - this is not a stalling tactic. It is not a ruse to delay marking up a climate bill. This is an attempt to get the best information about a bill that will affect the entire country.
Day Two of the Governor's Statewide Water Conference is Today
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The Oklahoma Comprehensive Water Plan is in the spotlight today at the 2009 Governor's Water Conference, going on in Midwest City. An update on where the process is- with the three planning workshops that were scheduled for this year now complete- will be provided- and some of the technical analysis that has been developed to this point will be updated.
Several agricultural groups are helping to sponsor the 2009 Water Conference- including American Farmers & Ranchers, Oklahoma Farm Bureau, OACD and the Oklahoma Cotton Council. Two agricultural leaders have a major role on the Oklahoma Water Resources Board, with cotton farmer Mark Nichols of Altus serving as Chairman, while Ford Drummond, a cattle rancher from Osage County, is a Board member.
One of the better resources that we have found online in the Water Planning Process thus far is their 2009 Status Report. We have linked it below.
Sorghum Industry Looking for Grassy Weed Control Answers
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The United Sorghum Checkoff Program is currently funding research to showcase new over-the-top grass control solutions to allow sorghum growers better management opportunities and flexibility in crop rotations. When asked about their main concerns regarding sorghum management, many producers have replied "weed control." Due to a lack of funding, little has been done to produce sorghum varieties that are resistant to many common herbicides used on other crops.
Kansas State University (KSU) is currently researching a solution to the problem. Dr. Kassim Al-Khatib, Professor of Agronomy at KSU, says because sorghum is grown in primarily dry regions, preplant herbicides can perform poorly or fail without adequate precipitation. There are herbicides that can be applied after the crop is established to control weeds but these products can potentially harm the crop as well. "There is a considerable need for over-the-top grass control in sorghum," said Al-Khatib.
Kansas State University has identified traits that are resistant to
herbicides such as Acetolactate synthase (ALS) and Acetyl co-enzyme-A
carboxylase (ACCase) in some sorghum varieties. The incorporation of these
traits into cultivated sorghum would produce an ALS and ACCase resistant
plant, allowing for higher yields and flexibility for producers.
Farm Bureau Asks Supreme Court to Overturn Clean Water Rule Revision
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~The American Farm Bureau Federation has filed a petition with the U.S. Supreme Court, asking the high court to review a lower court ruling that will otherwise impose Clean Water Act permitting requirements on the application of pesticides on, over or near water. "Allowing the lower court ruling to stand would pose serious challenges to farmers battling pests," said AFBF President Bob Stallman. "When pests strike, time is of the essence, and any length of time waiting for permit approval for products that are already approved would be disastrous."
The problem stems from a January 2009 ruling by the U.S. Sixth Circuit Court of Appeals, which struck down a 2006 Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) rule that interpreted the Clean Water Act did not regulate most pesticide applications into, over or near "waters of the United States," so long as the pesticide use complied with EPA's requirements (such as EPA-approved label restrictions). The Sixth Circuit found in "National Cotton Council v. EPA" that EPA must require Clean Water Act permits for pesticide application in water or near waters where pesticide falls into the water. The court recognized only a very narrow exception for chemical pesticides intentionally applied to water that leave no "residue" after their use is complete. AFBF's petition seeks Supreme Court review of that decision.
The practical effect of the Sixth Circuit decision is that almost all pesticide applications directly to water, over water, or "near" water will require a Clean Water Act National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit. If the decision is allowed to stand, farmers and others who use pesticides, such as mosquito abatement districts, will be required to obtain permits in order to apply pesticides on or near water. Since EPA views "waters of the United States" very broadly-including wetlands and even some ditches-the decision could affect hundreds of thousands of farmers.
Know Your Farmer- Know Your Food Hits Facebook
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Agriculture Deputy Secretary Kathleen Merrigan will host her second Facebook chat about the 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' initiative on Thursday, Nov. 5, at 3 p.m. The topic of this chat will be farm to school, which involves getting and using fresh produce and other farm products from local and regional farmers for use in local schools. The effort not only supports increasing economic opportunities for local farmers but also helps school children make healthy food choices.
Of course, here in Oklahoma, the group that has really promoted this concept is the Kerr Center for Sustainable Agriculture. They have worked with the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture and other groups to match up school districts with local food producers, offering farmers and local processors a substantial market during the school year.
The 'Know Your Farmer, Know Your Food' initiative emphasizes the need
for a fundamental and critical reconnection between producers and
consumers. The effort builds on the 2008 Farm Bill, which provides for
increases and flexibility for USDA programs in an effort to promote local
Unwanted Pesticide Disposal Sites Set for November
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~Oklahoma homeowners, agricultural producers, greenhouse and nursery operators, certified applicators and pesticide dealers can get rid of unwanted pesticides at three locations in November.
Collections times are 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at all locations: Nov. 12 at Crop Production Services in Webbers Falls, Nov. 17 at Estes Inc. in Clinton and Nov. 19 at Hooker Equity COOP in Hooker.
The collections will take only pesticides; no other types of hazardous waste such as oil, paint or antifreeze will be accepted. All pesticides will be taken, no matter the size. "No questions will be asked of participants," said Charles Luper, Oklahoma Cooperative Extension Service associate with the Oklahoma State University Pesticide Safety Education Program.
The program is funded by the Oklahoma Department of Agriculture, Food
and Forestry, with additional support from the Oklahoma Agribusiness
Retailers Association and the OSU Division of Agricultural Sciences and
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We also invite you to check out our website at the link below to check out an archive of these daily emails, audio reports and top farm news story links from around the globe.
Let's Check the Markets!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~We've had requests to include Canola prices for your convenience here- and we will be doing so on a regular basis. Current cash price for Canola is $7.65 per bushel, while the 2010 New Crop contracts for Canola are now available are $7.85 per bushel- delivered to local participating elevators that are working with PCOM.
Here are some links we will leave in place on an ongoing basis- Click
on the name of the report to go to that link:
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