June 25, 2024

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AgweekTV Full Show: Demand spurs bull markets, COVID-19 vaccine, Soil Health Minute, Walleye farming

COMING UP ON AGWEEK TV

GRAIN FARMERS REAP THE BENEFITS OF ONE OF THE STRONGEST DEMAND LED BULL MARKETS IN SEVERAL YEARS.

Mikkel Pates: AT LEAST ONE FARMER SAYS IF YOU’RE THINKING ABOUT NOT TAKING THE VACCINE, THINK AGAIN.

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Abbey: On the Soil Health Minute, we’ll talk about that next step in using cover crops on your farm.

AND MINNESOTA IS HOME TO ONE OF THE FIRST WALLEYE FARMING PROJECTS IN THE COUNTRY.

WELCOME TO AGWEEK TV, I’M MICHELLE ROOK.

THE SENATE AG COMMITTEE ADVANCED U.S. AG SECRETARY TOM VILSACK’S NOMINATION TUESDAY AND MOVED CONSIDERATION TO THE FULL SENATE.

VILSACK DISCUSSED HOW HE’LL USE EVERY TOOL AVAILABLE TO ACHIEVE A COMPETITIVE AND TRANSPARENT CATTLE MARKET, HIS WILLINGNESS TO REINSTATE COUNTRY OF ORIGIN LABELING AND HIS SUPPORT FOR BIOFUELS.

Tom Vilsack: I think we can make the case, should make the case and will make the case that there is a role to play for biofuels in climate, in the reduction of emissions.

And I think there’s a role for the biofuels industry to play in terms of fleet maintenance. We aren’t going to convert, there won’t be enough electric vehicles to convert all of that fleet in a relatively short period of time.

VILSACK SERVED AS SECRETARY DURING THE OBAMA ADMINISTRATION.

USDA HAS SUSPENDED $2.3 BILLION IN SUPPLEMENTAL CFAP PAYMENTS TO FARMERS.

MOST OF THE MONEY IS GOING TO HOG AND POULTRY GROWERS THAT HAD TO DESTROY ANIMALS AND OTHERS LEFT OUT OF EARLIER PROGRAMS.

THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION HALTED PAYMENTS WHILE IT REVIEWS ACTIONS TAKEN LATE IN THE TRUMP ADMINISTRATION.

THE FARM SERVICE AGENCY WILL CONTINUE TO ACCEPT APPLICATIONS DURING THE REVIEW PROCESS.

MEANWHILE BIDEN WANTS TO USE $30 BILLION FROM USDA’S CCC TO CREATE A CARBON BANK.

BESIDES THE MERGER OF THE AG DEPARTMENT AND THE DEPARTMENT OF ENERGY AND NATURAL RESOURCES, SOUTH DAKOTA LAWMAKERS ARE REVIEWING SEVERAL AG BILLS.

SENATORS APPROVED A PERMITTING BILL FOR CONCENTRATED ANIMAL FEEDING OPERATIONS. CURRENTLY, GENERAL PERMITS ARE RENEWED EVERY FIVE YEARS BUT THIS BILL DOUBLES THAT TO TEN.

Marv Post: We think that’s a good move. With all the technology we have today, that it just reduces the paperwork. We record what we do and we have the soil tests and the application of those nutrients.

LAWMAKERS ARE ALSO CONSIDERING A HEALTH INSURANCE PLAN RUN BY THE STATE FARM BUREAU. AND ONE TIME FUNDING OF A NEW LIVESTOCK COMPLEX AT THE SOUTH DAKOTA STATE FAIR.

THE NORTH DAKOTA LEGISLATURE HAS ALSO DEBATED SEVERAL AG RELATED BILLS IN THE EARLY WEEKS OF THE SESSION, INCLUDING SENATE BILL 2208,

REGARDING WATER RESOURCE DISTRICTS, WHICH LAWMAKERS MOVED TO A STUDY.

THE HOUSE APPROVED A GRAIN INSPECTION BILL INVOLVING FINANCIAL STANDARDS, PLUS LICENSING RULES FOR GRAIN BUYERS AND AG PROCESSORS.

THE HOUSE AG COMMITTEE PASSED AN UPDATE TO THE STATE SEED LAWS TO ADOPT NEW BREEDING TECHNIQUES, LIKE GENE EDITING.

AFTER SIX YEARS OF DEPRESSED PRICES THE GRAINS HAVE FINALLY TURNED INTO A DEMAND LED BULL MARKET. THIS PRODUCED A SIX DOLLAR RALLY IN SOYBEANS ALONE, FROM THE COVID LOW TO THE RECENT CONTRACT HIGH. I TALKED TO INDUSTRY LEADERS ABOUT HOW LONG THIS DEMAND COULD LAST.

The soybean rally started in August when China went on a massive buying spree as they rebuild their herd after African Swine Fever.

Kevin Scott: they’re building a new facility, lots of new swine facilities and they’re modern systems and in those systems they want to use more soybeans because it’s a better finishing product.

The result is U.S. soybean exports are on record pace, at nearly 96-percent of USDA’s projections. 60-percent is China business.

Monte Peterson: In fact, this last year, you know that pace is considerably more than what we’ve seen over the last 10-year average.

With strong demand, USDA lowered ending stocks to 140 million bushels, pushing prices to six year highs.

Peterson: That demand is reflected in the price that we see here back in the U.S. for our U.S. soy.

Past ASA President Bob Metz says China’s buying isn’t tied to the Phase One deal but the need to replenish government storage.

Bob Metz: China probably sucked down some of the reserves. I think they brought them down a ways over the last couple of years because of the embargo.

Plus, China’s soybeans are record high, hitting nearly $18 on January 28.

Metz: Let’s face it our soybeans were cheap, they were really cheap, and China seen an opportunity to buy up cheap soybeans.

However, China’s also bought 614 million bushels of U.S. corn, plus wheat, sorghum and ethanol. Scott is optimistic the trend is long term.

Scott: As they buy more corn and they need soybeans to go along with it that’s a great ration and we’d like to ship it all to them.

He hopes that means stronger grain prices and profitability for farmers for a while.

SOME CRITICS LIKEN CHINA’S BUYING TO THE GREAT GRAIN ROBBERY OF 1972, BUT SCOTT SAYS FARMERS LIKE HIM HAVE NO REGRETS.

THE DRAMATIC INCREASE IN CORN PRICES HAS SOME PRODUCERS LOOKING FOR FEED ALTERNATIVES.

THEY NEED TO CONSIDER DRY MATTER, PROTEIN AND ENERGY CONTENT, PLUS TRANSPORTATION COSTS.

LIVESTOCK FEEDLOT SPECIALIST KARL HOPPE SAYS WHEN CORN PRICES RISE SO DO MOST OTHER ALTERNATIVES LIKE HAY AND DISTILLERS GRAINS, SO MOST PRODUCERS ARE ABSORBING THE INCREASED EXPENSE.

Karl Hoppe: WE TEND TO FEED THE SAME THING YEAR AFTER YEAR AFTER YEAR IF WE CAN. SOME PEOPLE LOOK FOR ALTERNATIVE THINGS THEY CAN GET, AND THEY DO DO THAT. WE’VE BEEN LOOKING FOR CHEAP FEEDS FOR YEARS.

HOPPE SAYS IT’S TOO EARLY TO KNOW HOW LONG CORN PRICES WILL STAY HIGH.

WHILE THE WINTER WHEAT CROP IS STILL IN DORMANCY, THE DRY WINTER IS TAKING ITS TOLL ON THE CONDITION AND OUTLOOK IN SOUTH DAKOTA.

AS OF JANUARY 25, THE CROP WAS RATED ONLY 32-PERCENT GOOD TO EXCELLENT, COMPARED TO 67-PERCENT ON NOVEMBER 16. 21-PERCENT OF THE WHEAT IS ALSO RATED POOR TO VERY POOR.

Reid Christopherson: South Dakota NASS ratings for winter wheat conditions have dropped steadily from the fall. Largely, probably drought related, we just don’t have the snow cover we don’t have the moisture.

THIS IS A CONCERN FOR YIELD POTENTIAL. CHRISTOPHERSON SAYS IT COULD ALSO FORCE PRODUCERS TO RIP UP STANDS IN THE SPRING, AND PLANT ANOTHER CROP, ESPECIALLY GIVEN HIGHER ROW CROP PRICES.

COMING UP ON AGWEEK TV

Noah Fish: WE’LL TAKE A LOOK AT HOW AQUACULTURE IS TAKING OFF IN MINNESOTA AND THE MIDWEST.

WELCOME BACK. WALLEYE IS AN EXTREMELY POPULAR FISH IN THIS PART OF THE COUNTRY, BUT IF YOU DON’T FISH, IT CAN BE HARD TO COME BY.

NOW, A MINNESOTA-BASED COMPANY COULD BE THE FIRST TO BRING SUSTAINABLY RAISED WALLEYE TO THE MARKET.

NOAH FISH HAS MORE ON BLUE WATER FARMS IN THIS WEEK’S AGWEEK COVER STORY.

THERE IS FARM-RAISED SALMON, TROUT AND EVEN SHRIMP. BUT MINNESOTA COULD BE HOME TO THE FIRST INDOOR COMMERCIAL WALLEYE FARM. BLUE WATER FARMS FOUNDER AND CEO CLARENCE BISCHOFF SAYS IT WOULD BE GOOD FOR PEOPLE, AND THE PLANET.

Clarence Bischoff: WANTING TO FIND A WAY TO PROVIDE HEALTHY FISH AND PROVIDE A GOOD PRODUCT FOR HEALTHY PEOPLE AND DO IT IN A WAY THAT ALLOWS FOR A HEALTHY PLANET AS WELL.

BLUE WATER FARMS PLANS TO OPERATE A WALLEYE HATCHERY AND PROCESSING FACILITIES IN SOUTHEAST MINNESOTA, USING RECIRCULATING WATER TECHNOLOGY TO PRODUCE THE WALLEYE. THEY ALSO PLAN TO USE THE NUTRIENT-RICH WASTEWATER IN AN OPERATION TO GROW PLANT PRODUCTS THAT MIGHT INCLUDE LETTUCE, STRAWBERRIES, CHERRY TOMATOES AND HERBS.

Clarence Bischoff: I THINK IT’S VERY EFFICIENT, AND IT’S REALLY IN ALIGNMENT WITH THE SUSTAINABILITY PRINCIPLES THAT ARE AN ESSENTIAL PART OF OUR COMPANY.

BISCHOFF, AND BLUE WATER VICE PRESIDENT JESSICA COBURN, SAY IT’S THE RIGHT BUSINESS MODEL, AT THE RIGHT TIME.

Jessica Coburn: EXCITING, BUT BECAUSE AQUACULTURE IS FAIRLY NEW IN THE U.S., THERE’S A LOT OF QUESTIONS REMAINING AROUND IT.

BISCHOFF HAS PUT TOGETHER A TEAM OF SCIENTISTS, ENGINEERS, AND ADVISORS TO BUILD AN EFFICIENT AND SUSTAINABLE OPERATION. BUT THEY WILL NEED A LOT OF HELP FROM INVESTORS TO MAKE THE PLAN A REALITY.

Jessica Coburn: I THINK WALLEYE IS A GREAT FISH TO BRING TO MAR
KET. WE THINK A LOT ABOUT SALMON AND SOME OF OUR OTHER POPULAR FOOD FISH. GIVE WALLEYE ANOTHER LOOK, WE’RE GOING TO BE BRINGING THEM TO YOU IN A MORE SUSTAINABLE WAY.

SO, ALTHOUGH THE PROCESS HAS BEEN DIFFICULT, THE GOAL IS SIMPLE: RAISE GOOD, HEALTHY FOOD IN A SUSTAINABLE WAY. IN WELCH, MINNESOTA, THIS IS NOAH FISH FOR AGWEEK.

YOU CAN READ MORE IN THE NEXT AGWEEK MAGAZINE, OR AT AGWEEK.COM.

A WELL-KNOWN NORTHERN MINNESOTA FARMER HAS A MESSAGE– GET THE COVID VACCINE WHEN YOU CAN.

KELLY ERICKSON IS VICE CHAIR OF THE AMERICAN CRYSTAL SUGAR BOARD, BUT WHEN THE COMPANY HELD ITS VIRTUAL ANNUAL MEETING IN DECEMBER, ERICKSON WAS IN THE HOSPITAL, FIGHTING COVID. MIKKEL PATES TALKED TO HIM ABOUT THE EXPERIENCE.

Kelly Erickson: I WAS ALWAYS A PERSON THAT WORE A MASK WHENEVER I WENT ANYWHERE.

DESPITE HIS PRECAUTIONS, NORTHERN MINNESOTA FARMER KELLY ERICKSON GOT COVID IN DECEMBER. IT QUICKLY MADE ITS WAY THROUGH HIS FAMILY AND SOME EMPLOYEES, AND IT CLAIMED HIS FATHER’S LIFE.

Kelly Erickson: MY FATHER AND I PROBABLY WERE TEN DOORS DOWN FROM ONE ANOTHER AT ALTRU HOSPITAL. AND MY FATHER HAD COMPROMISING CONDITIONS ALSO, HE HAD A BAD HEART AND BAD LUNGS. AND WHEN HE CAUGHT COVID HE WASN’T GOING TO GET OUT OF THE HOSPITAL.

ERICKSON SAYS EVEN AFTER HE GOT OUT OF THE HOSPITAL, HE HAD SOME LINGERING HEALTH PROBLEMS.

Kelly Erickson: IT WAS REALLY A SCARY TIME. VERY VERY SCARY.

Cindy Urbaniak: I TRUST SCIENCE.

KITTSON COUNTY’S PUBLIC HEALTH DIRECTOR SAYS THE REGION’S SECOND WAVE WAS WORSE THAN THE FIRST, AND SHE EXPECTS A THIRD WAVE THAT WILL BE EVEN WORSE THAN THAT. KITTSON COUNTY HAS BEEN OFFERING VACCINES SINCE DECEMBER, BUT CINDY URBANIAK SAYS MANY PEOPLE ARE HESITANT TO GET THE SHOTS.

Cindy Urbaniak: I’M SCHOOLED IN PUBLIC HEALTH, SO I BELIEVE THAT VACCINES WORK AND I’M A PROMOTER OF VACCINATIONS SO AGAIN, I TRUST SCIENCE.

Kelly Erickson: I’M LIVING PROOF, I GOT OUT OF THE HOSPITAL, AND I DON’T EVER WANT TO DO IT AGAIN. AND IF YOU HAVE THE OPPORTUNITY TO GET THE SHOT, TAKE THE SHOT.

Mikkel Pates: SO AS THE VACCINE ROLLS OUT ACROSS THE U.S., THEY’RE ALSO TRYING TO GET IT INTO ARMS IN RURAL AREAS. FOR AGWEEK, THIS IS MIKKEL PATES AT HALLOCK, MINNESOTA.

THE MIDWEST DAIRY ASSOCIATION HAS LAUNCHED A NEW THREE-YEAR STRATEGIC PLAN THAT EMPHASIZES E-COMMERCE AND WORKING WITH FAMILY MUSEUMS TO EDUCATE THE PUBLIC.

CEO MOLLY PELZER SAYS THE PLAN MODERNIZES HOW THEY DO SOME BUSINESS, BASED IN PART ON LESSONS LEARNED DURING THE PANDEMIC.

IT HAS FIVE MAIN COMPONENTS, FOCUSING ON INCREASING SALES AND EDUCATION ABOUT DAIRY PRODUCTS.

Molly Pelzer: WE HAVE THREE KEY BUSINESS PRIORITIES IN OUR NEW STRATEGIC PLAN. TO BUILD SALES FOR DAIRY, TO BUILD TRUST FOR DAIRY, AND ALSO TO ADVANCE DAIRY RESEARCH, WHICH REALLY MEANS GET THAT RESEARCH OUT TO THE PEOPLE WHO CAN USE IT.

PELZER SAYS A BIG GOAL IS KEEPING MORE OF THE BUSINESS THAT SHIFTED TO ONLINE GROCERY SHOPPING DURING THE PANDEMIC.

COMING UP ON AGWEEK

If you’ve already tried cover crops and you’re looking for that next great thing to try, we’ll have some answers for you on the Agweek Soil Health Minute.

WINTER RETURNED TO THE REGION WITH A VENGEANCE THIS WEEK. HOW LONG WILL THIS COLDER PATTERN LAST?

HERE’S JOHN WITH OUR AGRI-WEATHER OUTLOOK.

THE AGWEEK SOIL HEALTH MINUTE IS SPONSORED BY THE NORTH DAKOTA CORN COUNCIL

IN THIS SEASON’S SOIL HEALTH MINUTE SEGMENTS, ABBEY WICK VISITS WITH EXPERTS TO ANSWER FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS. THIS WEEK, THE QUESTIONS REVOLVE AROUND COVER CROPS.

Abbey: A question I get often is about ‘What’s next for cover crops?” MAYBE SOMEBODY HAS TRIED PLANTING SOYBEANS INTO A LIVING RYE CEREAL COVER CROP AND THAT’S WORKED REALLY WELL, AND THEY’RE THINKING OF THE NEXT STEP FOR THEIR OPERATION. SO I WENT TO ONE OF THE EXPERTS , DR.MARISOL BERTI, AT NDSU PLANT SCIENCES, AND ASKED HER WHAT IS THAT NEXT STEP FOR FARMERS WHO ARE INTERESTED IN MAYBE ADDING A LITTLE MORE DIVERSITY OR TRYING ANOTHER WINTER ANNUAL AND HOW THAT MIGHT WORK FOR THEIR SYSTEMS.

WE DON’T HAVE TOO MANY WINTER ANNUALS THAT SURVIVE THE WINTER, AND WE’RE INTERESTED IN THAT BECAUSE THEY TAKE SOME MOISTURE IN THE SPRING, ESPECIALLY IN WET SOILS, HEAVY SOILS. AND SO WE’RE WORKING WITH WINTER CAMELINA,IT’S AN OIL SEED IN THE BRASSICA FAMILY, VERY WINTER HARDY IN THIS AREA, BUT YOU HAVE TO PLANT IT AFTER SEPTEMBER 15TH, CAMELINA DOESN’T LIKE HEAT. SO IT WORKS REALLY WELL, ESPECIALLY IF YOU’RE COMING FROM A WHEAT TO SOYBEAN ROTATION. BUT IF YOU HAVE IT FROM SOYBEAN TO CORN, ALSO IT’S A GOOD ALTERNATIVE BECAUSE RICE SOMETIMES HAS PROBLEMS WITH CORN.

THE MOST SENSE OF USING A LEGUME WOULD BE AFTER A CEREAL CROP, AND SO, SO SAY A FARMER’S GONE FROM A CEREAL CROP, THEY’VE LET THE VOLUNTEERS GROW AS THEIR COVER CROP AND THAT’S BEEN THEIR FIRST APPROACH, WHAT ARE SOME OTHER OPTIONS IF THEY’RE LOOKING FOR THAT NEXT STEP FOR A COVER CROP AFTER THEIR CEREAL GRAIN?

YOU WANT SOMETHING THAT REALLY GROWS AND PRODUCES BIOMASS AND FIXES NITROGEN. PEAS DO WELL, FORAGE PEAS BUT IN NORTH DAKOTA GROW TOO SLOW SO IN NORTH DAKOTA IT’S NOT REALLY RECOMMENDABLE.

THROUGHOUT THE WINTER, OUR AGWEEK REPORTERS WILL BE VISITING LIVESTOCK PRODUCERS TO GET PRODUCTION AND SALE UPDATES AND SHOW THE DIVERSITY OF SPECIES IN THE REGION. JENNY SCHLECHT KICKS OFF OUR AGWEEK LIVESTOCK TOUR IN CENTRAL NORTH DAKOTA..

THANKS, MICHELLE. I’M HERE IN GRACE CITY, NORTH DAKOTA WITH RYAN TOPP OF TOPP HEREFORDS. THEIR SALE’S COMING UP ON FEBRUARY12TH. SO RYAN, TELL US ABOUT WHAT IT’S LIKE TO PREPARE FOR YOUR SALE.

Ryan Topp: WELL, JENNY IT’S OUR 21ST SALE SO THE, A LOT OF THE PROCEDURES HAVE BECOME KIND OF STANDARD AROUND THE RANCH HERE. HOWEVER, THE ANTICIPATION OF ANOTHER SALE IS ALWAYS A VERY EXCITING TIME FOR US.

AND HOW ARE THE BULLS LOOKING THIS YEAR?

Ryan Topp: THE BULLS HAVE HAD AN AWFUL EASY WINTER, AS HAS THE REST OF THE DAKOTAS, UPPER MIDWEST. WE HAVE ADDED ON A BUNCH OF 20 MONTH OLD BULLS THIS YEAR, THE FIRST OFFERING THAT WE’VE EVER HAD OF AGED BULLS. WE DO HAVE THE LUXURY OF RUNNING ENOUGH COWS AT TOP HEREFORDS, SO WE CAN CULTIVATE THE INFERIOR BULLS OUT AND OFFER THE BEST. AND SO A VERY UNIFORM SET OF BULLS, BUT NONETHELESS I THINK ENOUGH VARIETY FOR, YOU KNOW, DIFFERENT FOLKS WANTING DIFFERENT KINDS OF CATTLE. SO WE’RE REALLY EXCITED TO DISPLAY THOSE BULLS AND GIVE THOSE FOLKS THAT WANT THOSE AGED BULLS AN OPPORTUNITY TO PURCHASE THEM.

Jenny: WELL THANK YOU, RYAN AND YOU CAN CATCH THE SALE ON FEBRUARY 12TH HERE IN GRACE CITY AT TOPP HEREFORDS.

STILL AHEAD ON AGWEEK TV, DESPITE THE PANDEMIC,THE LITTLE I SHOW GOES ON.

NDSU’S SADDLE AND SIRLOIN CLUB IS GEARING UP TO HOLD ITS 95TH LITTLE INTERNATIONAL COMPETITION.

THE EVENT FEATURES NDSU STUDENTS COMPETING IN LIVESTOCK SHOWMANSHIP, BUT AS WELL, EVENTS LIKE PUBLIC SPEAKING AND HAM CURING.

THIS YEAR’S LITTLE I QUEEN SAYS IT’S AN IMPORTANT EVENT,
FOR STUDENTS AND ALUMNI, SO THEY WERE HAPPY TO BE ABLE TO HOLD IT THIS YEAR, WITH COVID PRECAUTIONS IN PLACE.

Samantha Pernsteiner: WE WE’RE JUST REALLY GLAD THAT WE CAN MAKE IT HAPPEN AND WE GET TO HAVE AN AUDIENCE THIS YEAR.

THE 95TH LITTLE “I” IS FEBRUARY 12TH AND 13TH.

THANKS FOR WATCHING THIS WEEK’S EDITION OF AG WEEK TV.

REMEMBER, FOR ALL YOUR AG NEWS, GO TO agweek.com, AND YOU CAN FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK AND TWITTER AS WELL. HAVE YOURSELF A GREAT AND SAFE WEEK.