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Carl Zulauf, The Ohio State University
Since 2006, crop insurance has been the dominant crop safety net program. However, the prosperity that has characterized this period may be coming to an end. Thus, crop insurance may perform differently in the future than during the past few years. Read More.
USDA OFFICE OF COMMUNICATIONS
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced the U.S. Department of Agriculture's intent to purchase up to $126.4 million worth of fruit and vegetable products, Read More.
You may qualify to purchase a revenue policy on your dry beans this coming crop year. If you grow Black, Navy, Small Red, Dark Red, or Pinto beans; Read More for county list and more info.
Dan Charles, NPR News
Quite possibly, you've noticed some new food labels out there, like "Not mad with genetically modified ingredients" or "GMO-free." You might have seen them on boxes of Cheerios, or on chicken meat. Clarkson Grain is specializing in these grains, click to Read More about this emerging market.
USDA News Release
The Agricultural Act of 2014 (the Act), also known as the 2014 Farm Bill, was signed by President Obama on Feb. 7, 2014. The Act repeals certain programs, continues some programs with modifications, and authorizes several new programs administered by the Farm Service Agency (FSA). Most of these programs are authorized and funded through 2018. For the full article click here.
Agricultural Act of 2014 Conservation Compliance and Crop Insurance Premium Subsidy Eligibility - FAQ
The 2014 Farm Bill is large, and is sure to to raise a number a of questions about the farming industry and crop insurance. Click here to access an FAQ relating to the conservation compliance found within the farm bill. This FAQ answers some specific questions about the farm bill, but for a more general overview of the bill, please refer to the news article below (March 26, 2014).
Kirk Siegler, NPR News
Drought has been a real issue for farmers in the past few years, especially in places like Texas and California. In this article, Kirk Siegler explores the current situation in California and its impact on citrus and nut farmers. While California is far from home for most of us, most farmers know what a hot dry summer means, and this article is a somber look into what we would like to avoid this year. Find the article here.
Dan Charles, NPR News
In recent years we have seen fierce debates about the validity of climate change, and humans roles in it. Regardless of ones beliefs in the severity of the change, certain outcomes can be seen from our use of fossil fuels. The rise in carbon dioxide, for example, may or may not cause serious climate change, but a new study shows it may affect the quality of farming in the next century. Click here to see how.
Farm Bill Implementation
U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack testified in a hearing of the Senate Agriculture Committee yesterday. A number of issues were addressed, including the new linkage of conservation compliance requirements with crop insurance. Secretary Vilsack advised that details should be available this summer. While many producers are already in compliance due to long-standing linkage with commodity and disaster assistance programs, Vilsack estimated that approximately 6,000 producers may be impacted by linkage to crop insurance. Vilsack noted that conservation compliance became linked to crop insurance on the date of farm bill enactment in February 2014 and that farmers converting wetlands or breaking highly erodible land after that date will be subject to the new rules. His advice: if you’re one of the 6,000, it’s a good idea to start developing a conservation plan. The producer penalty of violating the conservation compliance requirement is loss of crop insurance premium subsidy.
As the world population continues to grow, farmers around the globe need to find ways to increase yields, and conserve the land for future use. This is a tough task, but one company in Japan recently opened an indoor lettuce farm which shows the breadth of human ingenuity. By using LED lights, the Japanese have been able to rapidly grow a more nutritious and less wasteful crop, all at 1% of the normal water use for growing lettuce. Now this may be infeasible for our large cash crops, but what might a system like this be able to do for the rest of our produce section veggies? Linked here is the interesting article about the lettuce factory as it may be a look into the future of farming.