January 27, 2015

NDSU Releases New Soybean Variety

ND Henson, a conventional soybean variety, has been developed and released by the North Dakota Agricultural Experiment Station, according to Rich Horsley, North Dakota State University Department of Plant Sciences chair.

The soybean line is intended to replace the NDSU-developed cultivar Cavalier.

In yield trials conducted by Ted Helms, NDSU soybean breeder, ND Henson was two days later in maturity than Cavalier and yielded 6 bushels per acre more. ND Henson is resistant to races 3 and 4 of phytophthora root rot, is tolerant to iron-deficiency chloross and is lodging resistant.

ND Henson performed very well in the multistate uniform regional tests conducted in 2013 and 2014. Averaged across all multistate locations, it was two days later in maturity and yielded 8.1 bushels per acre more than Cavalier. In North Dakota, the tests were conducted in Langdon, Park River and Minot. Other tests conducted were in Shelly, Moorhead and Crookston, Minn., and locations in Canada.

The new soybean variety has a purple flower, tawny pubescence and a black hila.

“With the growing problem of glyphosate-resistant weeds, there is a potential for a conventional soybeans, such as ND Henson, to be a good fit with marginal land situations and save on seed costs,” says Helms. “Also, ND Henson had a similar maturity date and produced a higher yeild than the Roundup Ready variety Asgrow AG 00932.”

ND Henson was named in honor of the late Bob Henson who was an associate agronomist at the NDSU Carrington Research Extension Center.



Conservation Compliance Important As Farm Bill Deadline Looms

The 2014 Farm Bill implements a change that requires farmers to have a Highly Erodible Land Conservation and Wetland Conservation Certification (AD-1026) on file.

For farmers to be eligible for premium support on their federal crop insurance, a completed and signed AD-1026 certification form must be on file with the FSA. The Risk Management Agency (RMA), through the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC), manages the federal crop insurance program that provides the modern farm safety net for American farmers and ranchers.

Since enactment of the 1985 Farm Bill, eligibility for most commodity, disaster, and conservation programs has been linked to compliance with the highly erodible land conservation and wetland conservation provisions. The 2014 Farm Bill continues the requirement that producers adhere to conservation compliance guidelines to be eligible for most programs administered by FSA and NRCS. This includes most financial assistance such as the new price and revenue protection programs, the Conservation Reserve Program, the Livestock Disaster Assistance programs and Marketing Assistance Loans and most programs implemented by FSA. It also includes the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, the Conservation Stewardship Program, and other conservation programs implemented by NRCS.

Many FSA and Natural Resource Conservation (NRCS) programs already have implemented this requirement and therefore most producers should already have an AD-1026 from on file for their associated lands. If however an AD-1026 form has not been filed or is incomplete then farmers are reminded of the deadline of June 1, 2015.

When a farmer completes and submits the AD-1026 certification form, FSA and NRCS staff will review the associated farm records and outline any additional actions that may be required to meet the required compliance with the conservation compliance provisions.

FSA recently released a revised form AD-1026, which is available at USDA Service Centers and online at: www.fsa.usda.gov . USDA will publish a rule later this year that will provide details outlining the connection of conservation compliance with crop insurance premium support.  Producers can also contact their local USDA Service Center for information.  A listing of service center locations is available at offices.usda.gov..


State Of The Union Address Sparks Reaction In Agriculture

Tuesday night provided the nation with an opportunity to hear President Barak Obama speak on his plans for the upcoming year, and those plans sparked reaction throughout the agricultural community.  Most divisive, the President Obama released plans for a new system of tax breaks.  The plans would hike the top capital gains tax rate from nearly 24-percent to 28-percent – largely ending the so-called step-up basis for capital gains that eases the tax burden on farmers and others when they pass on property. There would be some exception to his proposals, however. Family owned businesses wouldn’t have to pay any capital gains until a business is sold – while a closely-held business would have 15-years to pay what they owe. Republican reaction to this was lukewarm, with longtime ag senator Chuck Grassley commenting that the move would still amount to a tax on inflation, particularly for land values.  However, he added that whether or not they would have a chance at passing Congress will depend on the total budget plan, saying a tax increase would be dead but a move at tax reform that is budget neutral would have a chance.

National Farmers Union President Roger Johnson applauded the president’s vow to revisit the tax code, saying the changes would make it more fair for all and easier to understand. “NFU has always supported a more progressive tax code, and the need to retain tax provisions that make it possible for American family farmers to continue to produce the best, most abundant and most plentiful food, fuel, fiber and feed on the planet,” he added.

More universally endorsed was the Presidents push to grow trade.   The National Corn Growers Association urged passage of bipartisan Trade Promotion Authority legislation this year.  “Modernized TPA improves our nation’s ability to advance trade agreements that open markets for U.S. farmers,” said NCGA President Chip Bowling. “Ag exports, at nearly $150 billion, support over one million American jobs.”

Currently, the United States is pursuing an ambitious set of trade negotiations, including the Trans-Pacific Partnership and the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership. Trade Promotion Authority legislation, which renews the president’s authority to submit trade agreements to Congress for an up-or-down vote without amendments, is critical in finalizing agreements such as TPP because it assures our trading partners that a final deal won’t be altered by Congress, according to the National Corn Growers.