USDA Feral Swine Eradication Program is Good News

chuck zimmerman Leave a Comment

The meat of feral hogs is pretty good but we would rather have more deer, thanks very much.

Since 2013 I have hunted on a piece of land we affectionately call the Crystal Pig Hunt Club in central Georgia with my brother Paul and Gary Cooper of AgNet Media. The hogs started moving in about 2016 and have since made a dent in the deer population because they don’t get along well. Pictured here is godson and nephew Luke with his lovely wife Hope and a couple of hogs they got at the camp.

So, we were happy to hear about USDA’s new Feral Swine Eradication and Control Pilot Program (FSCP) in a joint effort between USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) and Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS). Applications are being accepted through Aug. 19, 2019, for partners to carry out activities as part of these pilot projects in select areas of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas.

Where brother Paul lives near Madison, Georgia the feral hog population has been a problem since at least 2014. The 2018 Farm Bill included this new pilot program to finally help address the threat that feral swine pose to agriculture, ecosystems and human and animal health.

Feral swine have been reported in at least 35 states and their population is estimated at over 6 million and is rapidly expanding. According to APHIS, feral swine were first brought to the United States in the 1500s by early explorers and settlers as a source of food. In the 1900s, the Eurasian or Russian wild boar was introduced into parts of the United States for the purpose of sport hunting. Today, feral swine are a combination of escaped domestic pigs, Eurasian wild boars, and hybrids of the two. Texas is the number one state for feral swine by far, estimated to have about half the U.S. population.

Bottom line, these beasts are nasty and destructive and probably even PETA would agree they should be eradicated.

AgWired Animal, AgWired Precision, Hunting, usda

Animal Ag Bites 6/24

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

  • Almost a million pounds of pork, or nearly 3.2 million servings, were donated by U.S. pig farmers during 2018, according to data compiled by the National Pork Board and the National Pork Producers Council.
  • New University of Illinois research, supported by Phibro Animal Health Corporation, demonstrates the benefits of a fully acidified, high-calcium diet for dairy cows. A Facebook Live panel from the 2019 American Dairy Science Association (ADSA) conference on Tuesday, June 25, at 5 p.m. EDT will feature the researchers. To watch this event from anywhere, simply visit the Phibro Facebook page, like it and visit the page again for the live event. The panel discussion will also be posted to the Phibro Facebook page and available for download.
  • The National Pork Board has announced that its second Pig Welfare Symposium will take place Nov. 13-14 in Minneapolis, Minnesota. The biennial forum is designed to help improve the well-being of pigs by disseminating recent research findings and recommendations, raising awareness of current and emerging issues and identifying potential solutions.
  • The Israeli Dairy School will offer a Dairy Herd Management Seminar and Tour of Israel from January 5-11, 2020. An opportunity to learn about the Israeli dairy industry’s success, the Seminar offers American dairy farmers an introduction to Israel’s newest herd management technologies and dairy herd feeding and nutrition techniques.
  • USDA is offering $75 million in funding for the eradication and control of feral swine through the Feral Swine Eradication and Control Pilot Program (FSCP). Applications are being accepted through Aug. 19, 2019, for partners to carry out activities as part of these pilot projects in select areas of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina and Texas. The 2018 Farm Bill included this new pilot program to help address the threat that feral swine pose to agriculture, ecosystems and human and animal health.
AgWired Animal, Animal Agriculture, Animal Bites

Animal Ag Bites 6/17

carrie muehling Leave a Comment

  • National Beef Packing Company, LLC now owns the Iowa Premium beef processing facility located in Tama, Iowa. This transaction enables National Beef to expand its beef processing operations into the State of Iowa and add over 850 employees to the National Beef family.
  • The American Feed Industry Association is now accepting applications for the 2019 Feed Facility of the Year program. The winners will be recognized at the 2020 International Production & Processing Expo, being held Jan. 28-30, in Atlanta, Ga.
  • The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) is pleased to announce that Gina Tumbarello, AFIA’s director of international policy and trade, has been reappointed to serve on the U.S. Foreign Agricultural Service’s Agricultural Technical Advisory Committee for Trade in Grains, Feed, Oilseeds and Planting Seeds.
  • The American Feed Industry Association is pleased to announce the addition of Mallory Gaines as its manager of market access and trade policy, effective June 10.
  • Expanding U.S. export markets is vital to the success of American pork producers, but trade disputes with some of our top markets, most notably China, are hampering growth and have caused severe financial harm to U.S. hog farmers, National Pork Producers Council Vice President and Counsel of Global Government Affairs Nick Giordano said at a Global Business Dialogue event in Washington, D.C. Giordano’s full remarks can be read here.
  • Connectiv, the Business Information Association, announced winners of its second annual Connectiv Innovation Awards, which included WATT Global Media in the category of Leveraging Ecosystem Partners. Andy Smith, Director of Innovation & Technology for WATT Global Media, accepted the award at the Connectiv Executive Summit on May 16, 2019. WATT’s award was for “Using Digital Convergent Technology (DCT) to Optimize Production Workflow.”
  • Kristyn Nigon was selected as the 2019 Vita Plus summer intern. She will be working with the Vita Plus Loyal team to gain experience in dairy management and the feed industry, as well as conduct her own research project and learn more about Vita Plus for the duration of the summer.
  • The National Pork Board is seeking applicants for the 2019 student social forces team. The applications are open now through July 8 at Pork.org/SocialForces. The social forces team will advocate for pig farming through social media usage. Selected applicants who successfully complete all outlined milestones will be eligible for a $500 scholarship.
  • U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue announced that signup begins June 17 for the new Dairy Margin Coverage (DMC) program, the cornerstone program of the dairy safety net that helps dairy producers manage the volatility of milk and feed prices, operated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency.
AgWired Animal, Animal Bites

USDA Picks Kansas City as New Home for ERS, NIFA

carrie muehling Leave a Comment

The Kansas City area will be the new home for the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Economic Research Service (ERS) and National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA), according to U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue.

“Following a rigorous site selection process, the Kansas City Region provides a win win – maximizing our mission function by putting taxpayer savings into programmatic outputs and providing affordability, easy commutes, and extraordinary living for our employees,” said Secretary Perdue. “The Kansas City Region has proven itself to be hub for all things agriculture and is a booming city in America’s heartland. There is already a significant presence of USDA and federal government employees in the region, including the Kansas City ‘Ag Bank’ Federal Reserve. This agriculture talent pool, in addition to multiple land-grant and research universities within driving distance, provides access to a stable labor force for the future. The Kansas City Region will allow ERS and NIFA to increase efficiencies and effectiveness and bring important resources and manpower closer to all of our customers.”

USDA conducted a Cost Benefit Analysis and conservative estimates show a savings of nearly $300 million nominally over a 15-year lease term on employment costs and rent or about $20 million per year, which will allow more funding for research of critical needs like rural prosperity and agricultural competitiveness, and for programs and employees to be retained in the long run, even in the face of tightening budgets. On top of that, state and local governments offered generous relocation incentives packages totaling more than $26 million. Finally, this relocation will give USDA the opportunity to attract a diverse staff with training and interest in agriculture. You may click HERE to view USDA’s Cost Benefit Analysis.

“We did not undertake these relocations lightly, and we are doing it to enhance long-term sustainability and success of these agencies. The considerable taxpayer savings will allow us to be more efficient and improve our ability to retain more employees in the long run. We will be placing important USDA resources closer to many stakeholders, most of whom live and work far from Washington, D.C. In addition, we are increasing the probability of attracting highly-qualified staff with training and interests in agriculture, many of whom come from land-grant universities. We look forward to this new chapter as we seek to fulfill our motto at USDA, which is to ‘do right and feed everyone,’” added Secretary Perdue.

AgWired Animal, AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, usda

Manure Constituent Sensing Available with John Deere Feature

carrie muehling Leave a Comment

A new feature from John Deere allows producers and commercial service providers to measure N, P, and K values in liquid manure applied as fertilizer.

The John Deere HarvestLab™ 3000 with Manure Constituent Sensing analyzes liquid manure 4,000 times per second to provide laboratory-quality values for important nutrient constituents to help producers manage their total fertilizer program.

According to John Mishler, precision ag tactical marketing manager for John Deere, the HarvestLab 3000 infrared sensor used to evaluate nutrient characteristics of forage crops and feed can now be used to provide accurate values for major constituents found in liquid manure used for fertilizer. “The system provides accurate, real-time values for total nitrogen, ammonia nitrogen, potassium, phosphorous and dry matter content of the manure as it’s applied to the field,” Mishler explained. “This enables the operator to manually or automatically adjust the volume based on the nutrient values to meet specific nutrient targets or goals for their fields, and possibly save on commercial fertilizers.”

Read more about HarvestLab here.

AgWired Animal, AgWired Precision, Equipment, John Deere, Nutrient Management, Precision Agriculture, Technology

President Signs Biotechnology Order

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

During his visit to an Iowa ethanol plant yesterday, President Donald J. Trump signed an Executive Order to Modernize the Regulatory Framework for Agricultural Biotechnology Products. The order encourages biotechnology innovation, ensures coordination across regulatory agencies, and safely enables billions of people across the world to reap the benefits of American biotechnology crops.

“Throughout our history, farmers have always led the way,” said President Trump. “We will never stop fighting for our farmers.”

Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue was with the president in Iowa and applauded the new executive order.

“Our current regulatory framework has impeded innovation instead of facilitating it. With this Executive Order, President Trump is once again putting America first and setting us on a course to modernize our regulatory framework so that it works for our farmers, ranchers, and consumers. We need all the tools in the toolbox to meet the challenge of feeding everyone now and into the future – if we do not put these safe biotechnology advances to work here at home, our competitors in other nations will,” said Secretary Perdue. “Science-based advances in biotechnology have great promise to enhance rural prosperity and improve the quality of life across America’s heartland and around the globe. I applaud President Trump for signing this important Executive Order that will help America’s farmers do what we aspire to do at USDA: Do Right and Feed Everyone.”

AgWired Animal, AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, Biotech

President Trump Celebrates Ethanol With Farmers

cindy zimmerman Leave a Comment

President Donald J. Trump brought a hopeful message to farmers in the Midwest on Tuesday with an appearance at Southwest Iowa Renewable Energy ethanol plant to celebrate year round sales of E15.

Sen. Joni Ernst (R-IA) introduced the president, and Trump in turn brought Iowa farmer and National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) first vice president Kevin Ross up to the stage to tell his story. President Trump also gave the microphone to a SIRE plant worker and a regional E15 retailer.

The president touted many administration accomplishments for farmers, including disaster assistance, and talked about the USMCA and China tariffs.

Listen to it all here:
President Donald Trump at SIRE ethanol plant

President Trump at Iowa Ethanol Plant Photo Album

AgWired Animal, AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, Audio, corn, ethanol, Exports, NCGA, RFA

House Agriculture Committee Unveils New Website

carrie muehling Leave a Comment

The House Agriculture Committee has launched a new website with an updated design that is compatible with phones, tablets and desktops.

The new website can be found at the same link: agriculture.house.gov.

“I’m proud of our new website, that makes it easier for folks to navigate and find out what the committee is up to,” said Chairman Collin C. Peterson. “We’ve taken a modern approach that works on all devices and with this new platform, the people we fight for are able to find the critical information they need.”

The new site also features rebranded committee imaging as well as links to the committee’s YouTube, Twitter and Instagram accounts.

AgWired Animal, AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, Government, Website

Animal Ag Bites 6/10

carrie muehling

  • Revisions to the Pork Quality Assurance® Plus 4.0 are now effective. The updated program reflects pork producers’ commitment to continuous improvement and features two training options – first-time and recertification.
  • The Pork Checkoff, in collaboration with the National Junior Swine Association and Team Purebred – the nation’s largest youth swine organizations – led an industry panel on biosecurity and farm preparation. Nearly 1,400 exhibitors, parents and industry spectators were on-site at The Exposition pig show at the Iowa State Fairgrounds as the panel addressed hot topics to stem on-farm disease spread.
  • David Newman, a pork producer from Arkansas, was elected president of the National Pork Board at the organization’s June board meeting in Des Moines, Iowa. The National Pork Board’s 15 producer-directors represent America’s pig farmers.
  • Global animal health and nutrition company Alltech is proud to support Feeding South Dakota by donating a trip to Ireland that will be presented at the sixth annual South Dakota Prime Time Gala on June 22, 2019. The South Dakota Cattlemen’s Foundation has pledged to raise $150,000 for Feeding South Dakota at the 2019 Prime Time Gala.
  • The dairy community, along with Feeding America, will be kicking off National Dairy Month by rallying consumers across the country to get nutritious food to families who need it. At the national level, a three-vehicle convoy will embark on a cross-country tour in June and July to provide kids with free nutritious milk and dairy foods at locations, including farmers markets, feeding sites and sporting events. People can take action against hunger and help increase access to nutrient-rich foods by donating milk at www.giveagallon.com.
  • The American Meat Science Association announced the appointment of Collette Schultz Kaster as its new Chief Executive Officer.
  • The American Feed Industry Association has opened registration for its 49th Liquid Feed Symposium, being held Sept. 10-12, in Omaha, Neb. More information on the Liquid Feed Symposium, including registration, the agenda and information about the location, can be found on the event’s website.
AgWired Animal, Animal Bites

Secretary Perdue Discusses Disaster Aid in Florida

cindy zimmerman

Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue visited Florida and Georgia to participate in roundtable discussions on USMCA and disaster aid signed by President Trump yesterday.

At his first stop in Tallahassee, Perdue participated in a short press conference with Governor Ron DeSantis prior to the roundtable.

Listen here:

USDA Secretary Sonny Perdue presser in Florida on disaster aid

AgWired Animal, AgWired Energy, AgWired Precision, Audio, Trade, usda