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A Prism Business Media Publication September 20, 2006 | 060920   
TABLE OF CONTENTS
 >> Logan Hawkes

 >> Soybean analyst looking at options for soybeans

 >> New farm bill will require broad-based support

 >> Soy biodiesel, products keep National Treasures running

 >> Accident prevention should be focus during harvest

 >> Market Choices to aid corn growers at harvest

 >> Soybean rust spreading in South Carolina

 >> News from the Top of the Hill

 >> EPA landmark program expands ethanol use

 >> Corn growers, universities receive drainage grant

 >> Toolbox allows producers to maximize profitability

 >> Back-to-back export records forecast

 >> Two products from ethanol

 >> Agroterrorism Symposium Is Sept. 25-29

 >> Senators continuing fight on disaster legislation

 >> The oil futures game

 >> Glyphosate-resistant johnsongrass in Argentina

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  EDITOR'S NOTE
Logan Hawkes
09/20/06    Crop News Weekly
We're over halfway through September and slowly closing in on midterm elections, and campaign rhetoric and political promises are flying left and right in hopes of swaying our votes before polls open in early November. Farm groups are gearing up to take advantage of the political climate and are once again pressing the new farm bill issue. The fear, say farm supporters, is that agriculture issues will get covered up by the war on terror, the conflict in Iraq and controversial immigration issues.

It's the farm bill issue that's in the spotlight this week, with Tom Gary, president of Mississippi's Delta Council, warning all who will listen that failure to develop a meaningful farm bill could have far-reaching economic consequences. Gary says a weaker ag community means less tax revenue to support the government's infrastructure. Also this week, the more than decade-long use of soy biodiesel and other soy-based bioproducts in Yellowstone National Park is proof that renewable fuel and other products perform well in some of the harshest environments. Elsewhere in the news, the long hours of fall harvest put any farm family at greater risk of injury - particularly for aging farmers and ranchers or those with disabilities. Producers are reminded this is National Farm Safety and Health Week and you should make safety a high priority. In our soybean rust update, the system of statewide sentinel plots in South Carolina is working as designed, giving growers ample time to treat for rust. So far 10 counties with multiple levels of infection have been reported. In other news, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently released a proposed rule to fully implement the Renewable Fuels Standard created as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005. The RFS requires minimum volumes of renewable fuels be used in America's motor fuels market annually. Finally this week, Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns announced record U.S. agricultural export forecasts for fiscal years 2006 and 2007, with horticulture products, corn and soybeans accounting for most of the expansion.

You'll find these stories and more in this issue of Crop News Weekly. Thanks for reading.



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  FROM OUR MAGAZINES
Soybean analyst looking at options for soybeans
09/19/06   
Abundant rainfall in the Midwest in recent weeks has pressured Chicago soybean futures, putting farmers in a quandary on how to market the drought-shortened crop in the Mid-South and Southeast. Last week's "mildly bearish" 2006 production forecast of 3.09 billion bushels, which was up 6 percent from August and up slightly from 2005, may make it even more difficult for farmers to find profitable prices for selling their beans. If realized, it would be the second biggest crop on record. - Forrest Laws, Farm Press Editorial Staff

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New farm bill will require broad-based support
09/18/06   
Failure to develop a meaningful farm bill could have far-reaching economic consequences, says Tom Gary, president of Mississippi's Delta Council. The agri-industrial complex within the organization's 18-county region "contributes more than half-a-billion dollars to local and state tax coffers," money that is "vital to continuing basic services such as schools, fire protection, law enforcement, roads/bridges, and other infrastructure," he says. - Hembree Brandon, Farm Press Editorial Staff

Soy biodiesel, products keep National Treasures running
09/18/06   
The more than decade-long use of soy biodiesel and other soy-based bioproducts in Yellowstone National Park proves that renewable fuel and other products perform well in some of the harshest environments. Farmer-leaders of the soybean checkoff joined U.S. Department of Energy (DOE), National Park Service and National Biodiesel Board (NBB) officials at the DOE's Central Regional Clean Cities Workshop near Jackson, WY, to recognize the successful use of soy biodiesel and other biobased products in Yellowstone, Grand Teton and other national parks. - The Corn & Soybean Digest

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Accident prevention should be focus during harvest
09/15/06   
The long hours of fall harvest put any farm family at greater risk of injury-particularly for aging farmers and ranchers or those with disabilities. "Older farmers and ranchers must adjust for the effects of aging. The risk of having an accident increases with age," said Karen Funkenbusch, coordinator of the AgrAbility program at the University of Missouri. Compared to the general U.S. labor force, farm operators are considerably older. More than one-fourth of all farm operators are 65 years old or older.

Market Choices to aid corn growers at harvest
09/18/06   
As growers approached the 2006 corn harvest, the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) launched an industry-wide initiative to help farmers channel their biotech corn varieties to appropriate grain-handling facilities. Biotech corn hybrids contain traits that are fully approved for food and feed use in the United States, but may not be fully approved in the European Union. As a result, grain handlers separate these varieties from grain exported to EU markets.

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""Our customers are very conscious of the potential for glyphosate weed resistance, which is one reason we don't recommend planting only glyphosate-tolerant corn. In the past 10 years, we have seen a lot of ALS-resistant waterhemp, so we understand the potential for resistance. Although no glyphosate resistance has been documented in the area, we feel like the amount of glyphosate needed to control certain weeds has increased."
John Allen, Brandt Consolidated, New Berlin, Ill.

For more information on other glyphosate resistance management tips, click here.

Soybean rust spreading in South Carolina
09/14/06   
The system of statewide sentinel plots in South Carolina is working as designed, giving growers ample time to treat for soybean rust. As of Sept. 11, 10 counties, with multiple levels of infection have been reported. Except for one find, all of the infections were found in Maturity Group V Sentinel Plots.(Orangeburg was Group IV & V Sentinel Plots). Clemson University Plant Pathologist John Mueller says, "I would characterize all of the finds as relatively light in severity except Horry, Orangeburg, and Sumter counties which had slightly higher levels of rust. - Roy Roberson, Farm Press Editorial Staff

News from the Top of the Hill
09/15/06    National Hog Farmer
Korea Opens to U.S. Beef -- Korea announced that it would resume the importation of U.S. boneless beef from cattle less than 30 months of age. Secretary of Agriculture Mike Johanns said, "Trade resumption in boneless beef is the first step in normalizing trade of beef and beef products with Korea." Johanns also said, "We are mindful that significant technical issues exist that must be resolved. We will continue to work with Korea to address these matters in the coming days." One of the major technical issues is Korea's insistence that there be a zero tolerance for bone chips. At this time, a number of companies do not plan to ship to Korea because of the bone chip policy. The U.S. exported $49 million of boneless beef to Korea in 2003.

Final USDA Farm Bill Analysis Paper -- USDA released its final farm bill analysis paper, "Strengthening the Foundation for Future Growth in U.S. Agriculture." This paper is a comprehensive analysis of factors that will affect the future of U.S. agriculture: international trade, research and development, protection of agriculture from pests and diseases, and challenges in preparing the next generation of farmers. The paper is available at http://www.usda.gov/farmbill.

Groups Call for Disaster Aid Vote Thirty-four agricultural organizations are asking the Senate and House leadership to vote on emergency disaster assistance before Congress leaves the end of the month for the election recess. The groups said, "Over 50 percent of all U.S. counties have been declared primary or contiguous disaster areas by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) this year. These designations are on top of the nearly 80 percent of counties declared disasters in 2005. he economic impact of these disasters has a resounding effect on our rural communities." Organizations signing the letter included the National Farmers Union, American Farm Bureau Federation, Agricultural Retailers Association, American Soybean Association, Farm Credit Council, National Association of Wheat Growers, National Cotton Council, National Council of Farmer Cooperatives, and USA Rice Federation.

Disaster Assistance Rally -- A draught aid rally was held in Washington, DC this week where members of Congress and representatives of National Farmers Union, American Farm Bureau Federation, and National Association of Wheat Growers called on Congress and the White House to pass draught aid this month. Senator Conrad (D-ND), said "now is the time" for this package to pass and the assistance package recently announced by USDA was not adequate for Rural America. Dale Schuler, President of the National Association of Wheat Growers, said at the rally, "The recently announced disaster assistance won't help wheat growers for the same reason that the Farm Bill doesn't help wheat growers in times of disaster." Others speaking at the rally included Senators Max Baucus (D-MT), Conrad Burns (R-MT), Norm Coleman (R-MN), Byron Dorgan (D-ND), Tim Johnson (D-SD), Blanche Lincoln (D-AR), Ben Nelson (D-NE), Jim Talent (R-MO), and John Thune (R-SD) and Congressmen Marion Berry (D-AR), Stephanie Herseth (D-SD), Collin Peterson (D-MN), and Earl Pomeroy (D-ND).

House Democratic Leadership Calls for Disaster Assistance Vote -- House Majority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and the Democratic leadership have asked Speaker of the House Dennis Hastert (R-IL) to schedule a vote this month on emergency disaster assistance. In a letter to Hastert, the Democratic leaders said, "Very limited and in some cases inadequate disaster assistance has been provided to some parts of the country, while other regions continue to be ignored. Farmers and ranchers are still struggling to recover from disastrous floods, droughts and other natural disasters in 2005, only to face another bad years in 2006, so the time to act is now." The administration opposes the Senate passed disaster assistance program.

10 Million More Acres Needed for Ethanol -- USDA Chief Economist Keith Collins told Congress last week that by the 2010 crop year there would be a need for an additional 10 million acres of corn than the average planted acres during 2005 and 2006 to meet the demand for ethanol and maintain exports and feed demand. This assumes that ethanol production increases to 10 billion gallons by 2010. Collins also indicated that 4.3 to 7.2 million acres currently enrolled in the CRP "could be used to grow corn or soybeans in a sustainable way."

Premise Registration Still Low -- There is growing concern with the low number of premises registered under USDA's National Animal Identification System. As of September 6, 2006 only 14.5% of the estimated premises were registered.

Ban on Horse Slaughter -- The House of Representatives passed legislation that would ban the slaughter of horses for meat consumption by a vote of 263-146. There are three foreign-owned plants in the United States that process horsemeat for human consumption that is exported to Europe and Japan. The National Pork Producer Council said, "The bill sets a dangerous precedent by banning a livestock product for reasons other than food safety or public health." The administration opposed the bill because the bill would require USDA to take possession of unwanted horses. USDA said this would create "significant" burden. Also, the bill does not provide any funding mechanism for USDA to take ownership of unwanted horses or to compensate owners for any losses. The bill will now be considered by the Senate where similar legislation has been introduced by Senators John Ensign (R-NV) and Mary Landrieu (D-LA). - from the desk of Scott Shearer

EPA landmark program expands ethanol use
09/15/06   
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently released a proposed rule to fully implement the Renewable Fuels Standard created as part of the Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct) signed in August 2005. The RFS requires minimum volumes of renewable fuels be used in America's motor fuels market annually. The RFS will also allow oil refiners the flexibility to use renewable fuels where it makes the most sense for their company.

Corn growers, universities receive drainage grant
09/18/06   
USDA's Natural Resources Conservation Service has awarded a $2.2 million grant to the National Corn Growers Association and other groups to study impacts of drainage water management. Besides NCGA, grant recipients include the Agricultural Drainage Management Coalition, the University of Minnesota, Iowa State University, the University of Illinois, Purdue University, Ohio State University and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.

Toolbox allows producers to maximize profitability
09/18/06   
The Market Journal Toolbox is now available to help farmers and ranchers maximize their profitability and minimize their risk when it comes to their bottom line. The Market Journal Toolbox offers 16 video and PowerPoint educational sessions to provide critical information in agricultural marketing and risk management. Segments run 30 minutes to an hour and are designed and packaged to provide advice and strategies farmers and ranchers can apply immediately, says Darrell Mark, University of Nebraska-Lincoln livestock marketing specialist, and one of the Market Journal Toolbox educators. - University of Nebraska

Back-to-back export records forecast
09/14/06   
Agriculture Secretary Mike Johanns announced record U.S. agricultural export forecasts for fiscal years 2006 and 2007, with horticulture products, corn and soybeans accounting for most of the expansion. Exports are expected to reach a record $68 billion in fiscal year 2006, eclipsing the old record of $62.5 billion set in fiscal year 2005. For fiscal year 2007, USDA forecasts U.S. agricultural exports will reach a record of $72 billion, $4 billion above this year. - The Corn & Soybean Digest

Two products from ethanol
09/14/06   
The ethanol industry is experimenting with fractionation -- separation of the embryo from the rest of the corn kernel. This produces two separate channels: 1) The corn endosperm (starch component representing 85% of the kernel) is channeled into ethanol, feedgrains and other starch-related products; 2) The embryo (15% of the kernel) is channeled into oil-related products including biodiesel. - Ed Clark and Susan Winsor

Agroterrorism Symposium Is Sept. 25-29
09/20/06   
The 2006 International Symposium on Agroterrorism is Sept. 25-29 at the Westin Crown Center in Kansas City, MO. Sponsored by the FBI and the Heart of America Joint Terrorism Task Force, it offers detailed discussion of topics and issues related to food defense and security. For more info and registration, visit http://www.fbi-isa.org.

Senators continuing fight on disaster legislation
09/13/06   
You can't say farm-state senators have thrown in the towel on their efforts to pass emergency legislation to help farmers cope with two years of weather disasters and high-energy costs. A group of 12 senators introduced yet another bill, The Emergency Agricultural Disaster Assistance Act of 2006, that would provide financial assistance to growers who experienced weather-related losses and high fuel costs in 2005 and 2006. - Forrest Laws, Farm Press Editorial Staff

The oil futures game
09/13/06   
Paying more for gasoline gives us more gasoline. Or at least that's the contention of a market analyst I heard on the radio. Noting that per barrel oil prices have risen more than 1,500 percent over the past several years, he said that much of that increase has been driven not by market forces or the law of supply and demand, but (to no one's real surprise) by speculators. - Hembree Brandon, Farm Press Editorial Staff

Glyphosate-resistant johnsongrass in Argentina
09/13/06   
Glyphosate-resistant johnsongrass has been identified in northern Argentina. While not an immediate threat to U.S. cropping fields, the development once again points to the necessity to prevent or slow a weed's ability to evolve herbicide resistance. "I deal with weed resistance stewardship from a global perspective," said Michelle Starkey, Monsanto Roundup Stewardship lead in an Aug. 29 interview. "So I've been talking with our Monsanto reps down in Argentina quite a bit about this. I've been working with them as they begin their research." - David Bennett, Farm Press Editorial Staff



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