September 23, 2014

Farm Service Agency and NDSU To Host Farm Bill Informational Meetings

North Dakota’s Farm Service Agency and North Dakota State University’s Extension Service are partnering this fall to host a series of informational meetings to discuss the Agricultural Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs authorized under the Agricultural Act of 2014.

The 2014 Farm Bill authorizes three program options: PLC, ARC-County Level, and ARC-Individual.  Producers must make a one-time decision to retain or reallocate crop bases, retain or update program payment yields, and to select the type of coverage (price protection, county revenue protection, and/or individual revenue protection) for the 2014-2018 crop years.

The informational meetings will explain the program election, base allocation and yield update process.  Producers can attend a session at one of the following locations:

Grand Forks           October 7          8-10 am              Alerus Center, Ballroom 3

Langdon                  October 7          1-3 pm                Langdon Research Extension Center, 9280 107th Avenue NE

Devils Lake             October 8         8-10 am              Devil’s Lake Memorial Building, 4th Avenue NE

Minot                       October 8         1-3 pm               North Central Research Extension Center, 5400 Highway 83 South

Williston                 October 9          8-10 am             Williston Research Extension Center, 14120 Highway 2

Dickinson               October 9          1-3 pm                Dickinson State University Ag Building Auditorium 104

Bismarck                October 15         8-10 am              Ramada Inn, 1400 E Interchange Ave

Jamestown            October 15         1-3 pm                Farmers Union Conference Room, 1415 12th Avenue SE

Lisbon                    October 16         8-10 am             Ransom County Fairgrounds, Expo Building West Wing

Fargo                      October 17         8-10 am             Ramada Plaza Suites and Conference Center 1635 42nd St S


If you have any questions on these meetings, please contact your local FSA Office.



North Dakota Soybean Council Sponsors International Trade Teams

Soybean buyers and processors from Singapore, Indonesia, Thailand, Philippines, and Vietnam will be in the Red River Valley this week, attending the Soybeans Procurement Management for Importers course at the Northern Crops Institute.  The course is sponsored by NCI, as well as the North Dakota Soybean Council, U.S. Soybean Export Council, the Northern Food Grade Soybean Association, and the Minnesota Soybean Research and Promotion Council

The course is designed to give participants an overview of the quality characteristics of U.S. northern grown soybeans as well as the intricacies of buying, handling, and shipping food grade soybeans out of the region.

Participants will tour farms and other locations in the Red River Valley during the week and will be split into two groups, each with a separate focus. The tours will begin on Tuesday after both groups attend an all participant session Monday at NDSU’s Commodity Trade Room.

Food grade buyers will visit Brushvale Seed of Breckenridge, MN, Richland IFC of Dwight, ND, SB & B Foods of Casselton, ND, SK Foods Specialty Processing of Moorhead, MN and SunOpta of Moorhead.

As for the feed grade buyers, they will tour the Northern Crops Institute’s feed mill, Alton Grain Terminal and the Peter Lovas farm near Hillsboro, ND, and the Colfax Farmers Elevator and the Jay Myers Family farm near Colfax, ND.  Additionally, the feed group will tour NDSU’s Ag Experiment Station Research Greenhouse complex.  The ND Soybean Council staff will be on hand to answer any questions the international guests have and promote soybeans grown in North Dakota.

A supper for all will be hosted Tuesday evening at the Bill & Karolyn Zurn Family Farm at Callaway, MN.  Any questions can be directed to Stephanie Sinner of the ND Soybean Council


U.S. Military To Start Using Biofuels Under New Agreement

Three companies were awarded contract to construct biorefineries for “drop in” biofuels for the military and private sector on Friday. The Departments of Navy, Energy and Agriculture announced the contracts under a 2011 presidential directive. The contracts are part of the Obama Administration’s goal to boost and diversify the domestic fuel base, according to Friday’s announcement.

Secretary of the Navy Ray Mabus stated “The contracts being announced today will help expand the operational capability of our Navy and Marine Corps around the world.” Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack commented “”Any time our military can use more American grown fuels instead of relying on foreign sources it makes our armed forces more energy secure.” In total, these projects will produce more than 100 million gallons of military grade fuel beginning in 2016 and 2017 at a price competitive with their petroleum counterparts.

Under the contracts awarded Friday, Emerald Biofuels will build an 82 million gallon per year refinery on the Gulf Coast using waste fats to create military grade fuel. Fulcrum BioEnergy will build a 10 million gallon per year refinery in McCarran, Nevada using municipal solid waste as its feedstock. USDA announced a $105 million Biorefinery Assistance Program loan guarantee for that facility earlier this month. Also, Red Rock Biofuel will build a 12 million gallon per year refinery in Lakeview, Oregon using woody biomass, or the by-products of forest management, as its feedstock. The drop-in alternative fuels can be blended at a 50/50 ratio with traditional fossil fuels. T

his blend was successfully demonstrated during the Rim of the Pacific demonstration in 2012 for ships and planes, showing the fuel can be utilized in the Navy’s warfighting platforms with no degradation to performance or mission.