Nominate National Fluid Milk Processor Promotion Board

Jamie Johansen Leave a Comment

The USDA is asking fluid milk processors and other interested parties to nominate candidates to serve on the National Fluid Milk Processor Promotion Board. The deadline for nominations is Jan. 12, 2018.

USDA will accept nominations for board representation in six geographic regions and two at-large positions. Nominees for the regional positions must be active owners or employees of a fluid milk processor. At least one at-large position must be a member of the general public.

The geographic regions with vacancies are: Region 3 (Delaware, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Virginia, and District of Columbia); Region 6 (Ohio and West Virginia); Region 8 (Illinois and Indiana); Region 9 (Alabama, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, and Tennessee); Region 12 (Arizona, Colorado, New Mexico, Nevada, and Utah); and Region 15 (Southern California).

Newly appointed members will serve three-year terms from July 1, 2018, through June 30, 2021. USDA will also accept nominations to fill a vacant position in Region 4 (Georgia, North Carolina, and South Carolina), and a vacant at-large position, each to serve a one-year term expiring on June 30, 2019.

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Animal Ag Bites 12/11

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  • Merck Animal Health hosted leading animal welfare experts together with subject matter experts from agriculture, food processing/packing and retail in a first of its kind symposium “Advancing Animal Welfare Together” in September in Dallas, Texas. The gathering explored ways to work together to address practices essential to animal welfare today, and advancements possible in the future.
  • The November Dairy Market Report from the National Milk Producers Federation reports recent signs that overall supply has been gradually heading back toward balance with demand in U.S. domestic dairy markets. These include year-over-year growth in milk production well below 2 percent, slower growth in cheese production, further reduction in cheese stocks and continued growth in cheese exports.
  • Pig farmers and food production companies alike are wrapping up a successful 2017 that continues to show steady consumer demand for pork. The summer grilling season ended strongly, and signs point to a solid year-end opportunity for ham. The National Pork Board shares Nielsen Perishables Group data showing overall retail spending on pork by U.S. consumers was up by more than 3 percent in dollar sales during the month of October.
  • The American Hereford Association (AHA) released the first updated expected progeny differences (EPDs) and corresponding accuracies using the Biometric Open Language Tools (BOLT) genetic evaluation software Dec. 4. The new genetic evaluation also includes two new traits, Sustained Cow Fertility (SCF) and Dry Matter Intake (DMI), and updated profit ($) indexes. EPDs will be released once a week, an increase in frequency from the previous 10 times a year.
  • Dr. Max Hawkins, nutritionist with the Alltech Mycotoxin Management team, will present data collected across the U.S. as part of the 2017 Alltech U.S. Harvest Analysis. The presentation will outline the mycotoxin risk levels found in both forages and grains, focusing on ruminants. Register for the Dec. 14 webinar here.


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Milk Gets A New Voice

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Edge is the new name for a large dairy cooperative formerly known as the Dairy Business Milk Marketing Cooperative. John Pagel is a Wisconsin dairy farmer currently serving as president of Edge.

“As we continued to grow, we could understand and see that we did not have what we believed was good, solid representation of federal issues in [Washington] D.C. And, as we continued to talk to our patrons and the issues and problems that they were having, we wanted to deliver more value to them as a coop,” said Pagel. “So, we are starting to focus and concentrate our efforts on being a stronger representative for our patrons in Washington, D.C.”

Pagel said priorities for the cooperative’s members heading into the new year include immigration, trade and the 2018 Farm Bill.

Listen to Jamie’s interview with John Pagel here: Interview with John Pagel, Edge

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Missouri Farm Bureau Listening Session on #FarmBill18

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The Missouri Farm Bureau held their annual meeting earlier this week and a highlight for many was the discussion on the 2018 Farm Bill. In a packed house, a Focus on the Farm Bill Seminar took place with Capitol Hill decision makers and thought-leaders in Missouri agriculture.

– Ranking Member House Ag Committee, Congressman Collin Peterson
– Missouri Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler
– Chairman Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Chris Giancarlo
– Former Congressman Kenny Hulshof
– Retired Economist, American Farm Bureau Federation, Dr. Bob Young,
– Senior Advisor, USDA Secretary, Brian Klippenstein

Remarks from Collin Peterson, Congressman

Remarks from Chris Giancarlo, CFTC

Remarks from Vicky Hartzler, Congresswoman

Remarks from Kenny Hulshof, Former Congressman

Remarks from Brian Klippenstein, USDA

Remarks from Dr. Bob Young, Retired AFBF

Q&A and Closing Remarks

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SMART Farmer Lauren Arbogast

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Lauren Arbogast is a city girl who married into the farm and found it so interesting that she started a blog about it.

On her blog “Paint The Town Ag”, which has also become her Facebook and Twitter platform, Lauren shares photos of musings of life on the farm with her husband and two “mini farmer” sons. She became a national spokesperson for agriculture last year when she was chosen by the U.S. Farmers and Ranchers Alliance (USFRA) as one of their Faces of Farming and Ranching.

Learn more about Lauren in this podcast – SMART Farmer Podcast with Lauren Arbogast, Virginia poultry farmer

Subscribe to the SMART Farmer podcast

Learn more about USFRA and SMART Farm

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Animal Ag Bites 12/4

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  • The Animal Agriculture Alliance announced the winners of the 2017 College Aggies Online (CAO) scholarship competition, which prepares students to become lifelong advocates for agriculture. The top three individual winners along with a representative from each winning club will receive an expenses-paid trip to the Alliance’s 2018 Stakeholders Summit set for May 3-4 in Arlington, Va.
  • Hiland Dairy Foods Company, a leading farmer-owned dairy producer, is pleased to announce that the company recently received awards in 17 product categories during the 2017 World Dairy Expo (WDE) Championship Dairy Product Contest. The prestigious WDE all-dairy national contest allows Hiland Dairy and other winning companies the right to claim their products as “the best of the best” in North America.
  • Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue has announced the appointment of six members to serve on the National Fluid Milk Processor Promotion Board.
  • Perdue also has announced the appointment of five members to serve on the National Pork Board.
  • The 10th Animal Agriculture Sustainability Summit is returning to the 2018 International Production & Processing Expo in Atlanta. The summit, sponsored by the U.S. Poultry & Egg Association, will focus on current sustainability topics relevant to the animal agriculture industry. The half-day program will be held Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018, and is free for all registered expo attendees.
  • Cattlemen gathering at the 2018 Cattlemen’s College in Phoenix, Ariz., Jan. 30 – 31 can save money by pre-registering for the event by Jan. 5. College students are eligible for additional registration discounts. For more information, or to register for the event, visit
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Agriculture Secretary Addresses Ag Retailers

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Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue topped off the ARA Conference and Expo on Thursday in Phoenix, covering a broad range of topics in his comments including tax reform, de-regulation, trade, food security, infrastructure, school lunches and the farm bill.

Perdue, who noted his past experience in the fertilizer business and with ARA’s predecessor organization, the National Fertilizer Solutions Association, talked extensively about the tax reform bill currently under debate in the Senate. He encouraged those in the business of agriculture to contact their representatives in Washington, D.C., to communicate their corporate and individual interests.

“Farming is a great lifestyle, but you don’t get to do it very long as a lifestlye if you don’t make money at it,” he said. “You need to speak through your associations, but you also need to speak independently. Talk to your members of Congress and let them know what’s on your mind. Weigh in on what you like about (the tax reform bill), what you don’t like about it.”

Perdue also stressed the need for development of rural broadband to maximize technological innovations within agriculture. Precision agriculture depends on broadband everywhere, he said.

Watch the video.

Listen to or download his entire remarks and press gaggle –
Secretary Perdue at ARA2017

Secretary Perdue press gaggle

2017 ARA Conference and Expo Photo Album

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American Veal Commits to Innovation, Collaboration & Quality

jamie johansen

The American Veal Association (AVA) represents milk-fed veal producers and those members are small family farms. We were able to learn more about the organization and its vision of being a source of information and collaboration to customers about the high-quality, safe and nutritious veal their members provide and its mission of leading advocacy efforts that engage the industry in delivering on their commitment to innovation, collaboration and quality.

“We are out there working on policy issues and promotion of the image of the industry, especially the changes we have made in the last 10 years,” AVA President, Dale Bakke said while at the National Association of Farm Broadcasting’s Trade Talk.

One of those changes is the move to group pens. Bakke said the end of 2017 was the deadline for all AVA members to make the switch. They now want to spread the word and inform consumers of the benefits.

Another involves the amount of veal being imported from the European Union. Bakke said they do not consider it fair trade and want to make sure policy leaders understand the detriment it will have on American veal.

Listen to my complete interview with Dale as we continue trade talks and more about AVA’s role here: Interview with Dale Bakke, American Veal Association

View and download photos here: 2017 NAFB Convention Photos

Coverage of the NAFB Convention is sponsored by
Coverage of the NAFB Convention is sponsored by FMC
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Alltech 2017 Harvest Analysis = High Mycotoxins in Corn Silage

Jamie Johansen

Feed sample testing in the 37+ lab at Alltech Headquarters in Nicholasville, Kentucky.

In 2016, corn growers faced challenges from mycotoxins and Alltech believes those challenges seem likely this year.

Corn silage samples from across the entirety of the U.S. have shown extremely high levels of mycotoxins, particularly deoxynivalenol (DON), type A trichothecenes (T-2), fusaric acid and fumonisin. It is important to note that once there are mycotoxins in the crop, they will not go away. There will be higher levels of mycotoxins on farms practicing monocropping of corn, as opposed to those farms that are rotating crops or using deeper tillage methods.

Samples submitted to the Alltech 37+® mycotoxin analytical services laboratory between Sept. 1 and Nov. 1, 2017, show that grains contained mixtures of mycotoxins, including DON, fusaric acid and fumonisin. Forages such as corn silage, barlage and haylage samples also contained multiple mycotoxins in 2017, including DON, fusaric acid, T-2 and fumonisin.

“Understanding the risk of mycotoxins and combinations of mycotoxins, even at lower levels, allows livestock owners and managers to institute a management program for more optimum performance and health,” said Dr. Max Hawkins, nutritionist with the Alltech® Mycotoxin Management team. “Testing feedstuffs and finished feeds is paramount to putting this management program in action.”

Alltech will be hosting a webinar to review the 2017 Alltech Harvest Analysis results for the U.S. with Dr. Max Hawkins on Dec. 14, 2017 at 10:00 a.m. ET. Learn more about these results here.

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Pig Farmers Pay It Forward in #HamsAcrossAmerica

Jamie Johansen

The National Pork Board, the Iowa Pork Producers Association, Smithfield Foods, Inc. and PrairieFresh® Premium Pork joined forces to support the second annual #HamsAcrossAmerica campaign in Central Iowa. The organizations hosted a kickoff event, on Giving Tuesday, to serve clients of the Central Iowa Shelter and Services and provided a nearly 70,000-pound pork donation to the Food Bank of Iowa, courtesy of Smithfield Foods, Seaboard Foods, Triumph Foods and U.S. pig farmers.

“As pig farmers, giving back to our community always has been an integral part of who we are,” said Bill Tentinger, a pig farmer from Le Mars, Iowa, who serves on both the National Pork Board and the Iowa Pork Producers Association board of directors. “Hams Across America and this kickoff event allow me and other farmers to live the We CareSM ethical principles and share our love of the product that we produce.”

The annual #HamsAcrossAmerica campaign encourages farmers and those involved in the pork industry to show appreciation for friends, family and neighbors through the gift of ham and other pork products.

“Smithfield is proud to participate in Giving Tuesday with the National Pork Board and support the positive impact it provides for so many of our neighbors in need,” said Dennis Pittman, senior director of hunger relief for Smithfield Foods. “As a global food company with Iowa-based facilities, Hams Across America aligns with Smithfield’s commitment to resolve hunger across the country and to cater to the communities we call home.”

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