Deere Introduces High-Capacity Self-Propelled Forage Harvesters

cindy zimmerman

John Deere showcased the all-new 9000 Series Self-Propelled Forage Harvesters (SPFH) at last week’s Farm Progress Show, drawing a lot of interest from attendees.

The four new models, which range from 616 hp to 957 hp, are able to provide up to 400 tons of throughput per hour, along with optimum corn silage processing independent of the length of cut, according to Shaun Fritchey, senior marketing rep, forage harvesters. “Compared to its predecessor, the 9000 Series is 10 percent more productive per horsepower and offers a 10 percent improvement in kernel processing.”

Fritchey says the improved performance and capabilities of the 9000 Series enable producers and custom harvesters to obtain the highest possible return on investment under narrow harvesting windows where high-capacity and high-quality feed are the goal.

Learn more in this press release and this interview from Farm Progress Show –FPS18 Deere interview with Shaun Fritchey

John Deere at the 2018 Farm Progress Show

Content Creation at the Farm Progress Show brought to you by Farm Progress Show content creation courtesy of John DeereCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by GrowmarkCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by Bayer CropScience
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Farm Bill Conference Committee Meets This Week

cindy zimmerman

The 2018 Farm Bill Conference Committee will hold its first public meeting this week on Wednesday, September 5 at 9:30 am Eastern.

Agriculture Committee Chairmen Sen. Pat Roberts, R-Kan., and Rep. K. Michael Conaway, R-Texas, and Ranking Members Sen. Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., and Rep. Collin Peterson, D-Minn., announced the meeting last month, saying that they are “committed to working together on a Farm Bill that delivers certainty and predictability to our farmers and families as quickly as possible.”

The Farm Bill Conference Committee is composed of 56 members, including nine Senators and 47 Representatives.

Faced with the lowest farm income in 12 years, the presidents of the American Farm Bureau Federation and National Farmers Union are asking Senate and House conferees to move quickly.

AFBF and NFU, together with more than 150 other organizations, also sent a letter to the Senate and House Agriculture committees asking the farm bill conference committee to pass an on time, five-year farm bill before the September 30 expiration of the 2014 farm bill.

The hearing will be webcast live on

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Secretary Perdue Comments on Current Issues

cindy zimmerman

Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue visited the Farm Progress Show this week, making an appearance for everyone at the show to enjoy with Max Armstrong and Orion Samuelson in the VIP tent, followed by a press gaggle where trade was the number one topic, along with WOTUS and the Renewable Fuel Standard.

Asked about Canada and its dairy policy – “The president’s been pretty firm on this…We’re not asking Canada to do away totally with their supply-management system, but if they’re going to continue we want them to manage their supply.”

Regarding trade assistance to farmers – “It’s based on what is the tariff damage actually calculated. That’s why you see the difference between the soybean award and the corn award, because of the tariff damage.”

WOTUS court decision – “Administrator Wheeler now is working on a renewed WOTUS rule that will be affirmed in the courts to give our farmers certainty.”

E15 year round – “President called me this morning said let’s get it done.”

Listen here – FPS 18 Secretary Perdue press gaggle

2018 Farm Progress Show

Content Creation at the Farm Progress Show brought to you by Farm Progress Show content creation courtesy of John DeereCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by GrowmarkCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by Bayer CropScience
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Weather Causes Early End to FPS18 Day One

cindy zimmerman

There’s always something new at Farm Progress Show and this year a big storm caused something that has never happened before – an evacuation and shut down of the show before noon.

Rain had been in the forecast for the day, but everyone was hoping it would either miss us or not be too bad. However, when the storm was within minutes of hitting, reports of hail, strong winds, and lightning in the area forced organizers to shut everything down and and try the get people out as quickly and safely as possible. Unfortunately, the downpour created muddy conditions in the parking areas almost immediately and dozens of vehicles become stuck in the mud, which made leaving a lot more difficult.

Day two is like day one all over again, since everyone is now a half day behind and struggling to reschedule activities scheduled for yesterday afternoon, plus we have Secretary Sonny on the grounds starting at noon.

Watch this video from the Bayer tent as Pam Fretwell was moderating the farmer panel and got the word to tell everyone to evacuate.

2018 Farm Progress Show Photo Album

Content Creation at the Farm Progress Show brought to you by Farm Progress Show content creation courtesy of John DeereCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by GrowmarkCoverage of the Farm Progress Show is sponsored by Bayer CropScience
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Animal Ag Bites 8/27

carrie muehling

  • Allflex, part of the Antelliq Group, has announced that it has acquired Agrident, the German-based agricultural technology company specializing in RFID data capture systems used in process control and animal management systems worldwide.
  • The U.S. Roundtable for Sustainable Poultry & Eggs and the International Poultry Welfare Alliance have selected Ryan Bennett to lead both organizations as their new executive director beginning Sept. 4.
  • TechAccel, a venture development company in the agriculture and animal health sector, is partnering with Reliance Animal Health Partners, an animal health technology consulting firm, to form a new animal health product development organization.
  • Kent Nutrition Group is offering a new line of products developed for sheep, goats, pigs and rabbits under the Home Fresh® product family name.
  • The North American Meat Institute has named Julie Anna Potts its next president and CEO effective September 24, 2018. Potts succeeds retiring President and CEO Barry Carpenter.
  • Zoetis has introduced Core EQ Innovator™, the first and only equine vaccine to contain all five core equine disease antigens – West Nile, Eastern and Western Equine encephalomyelitis, tetanus and rabies – in one vaccine.
  • Rebekka Paskewitz, a 20-year-old college student from Browerville, Minnesota, representing Todd County, was crowned the 65th Princess Kay of the Milky Way in an evening ceremony at the Minnesota State Fairgrounds Aug. 22.
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Old MacDonald Had a Daughter

cindy zimmerman

Female farmers have a new anthem thanks to the efforts of Land O’Lakes, song writer Liz Rose, and songstress Maggie Rose who collaborated to re-imagine the children’s song “Old MacDonald Had a Farm,” introducing “She-I-O” for a new generation.

The song and video featuring women on the farm is the cornerstone of the new All Together Better initiative from the farmer-owned cooperative that’s owned and run by 1,791 farmers, many of whom are women.

Land O’Lakes has also partnered with Feeding America to raise awareness around the issue of food insecurity and will donate $1 to Feeding America for every share, tag or comment on any of the “She-I-O” music video content on Land O’Lakes social channels, as well as the “She-I-O” music track, up to $100,000. Use the hashtag #AllTogetherBetter when you share!

AgWired Animal, cooperatives, Video

Study Reveals Growing Interest in Lamb

cindy zimmerman

A new survey from the American Lamb Board (ALB) reveals increasing consumer interest in lamb.

“This study revealed positive trends for lamb in the US,” said Jim Percival, ALB board chairman and sheep producer from Xenia, Ohio. “Among the General Population, 24% reported eating lamb in the last year, up from 20% in 2011 and 21% in 2006.”

The lamb usage and attitude study assessed consumers’ knowledge and preference levels of domestic and imported lamb and will assist industry stakeholders in making strong, strategic decisions about how to market U.S. lamb.

“The American Lamb Board has devoted more than a decade to building awareness and demand for Lamb,” said Megan Wortman, ALB executive director. “As we work through our 2018 strategic plan, advancing American Lamb’s value proposition is a core element. Understanding consumer attitudes and product usage patterns are also critical components.”

The online study was conducted during 2018 among 2,084 U.S. adults aged 18-74 years. The American Lamb Board has three target audiences including: Infrequent Lamb Users (those who eat lamb less than four times a year and/or only in restaurants), Thoughtful Eaters (those who are concerned about where their food comes from and how it’s grown) and Millennials (those who were born between 1980-2000 and who are also interested in food and where it comes from).

While consumer interest and enjoyment in lamb is growing, respondents said price and availability are the leading barriers to purchasing lamb in the meat case. The study also showed that learning more about preparing lamb, along with increased availability, could increase lamb usage.

“Half of General Population respondents indicated a willingness to learn how to cook lamb; this is even higher among the target groups as 79% of Infrequent Lamb Users, 59% of Thoughtful Eaters and 56% of Millennials showing an interest in learning about lamb cuts and cooking methods,” said Wortman.

In addition to preparation information, survey respondents desired to hear about locally raised, animal care, and assurances of antibiotic-free and no added hormones.

ALB conducted a webinar outlining the research results for agricultural media Tuesday. Listen to or download audio from the call here: American Lamb consumer study webinar

Links to more information:
2018 American Lamb Usage & Attitudes Consumer Market Research Report PowerPoint
Webinar outlining 2018 American Lamb Usage & Attitudes Consumer Market Research

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America’s Pig Farmer of the Year Announces Final Four

carrie muehling

The public will once again help to choose the 2018 America’s Pig Farmer of the Year. The National Pork Board honors a U.S. pig farmer each year who excels at raising pigs follow the We Care ethical principals and who is committed to sharing the farming story with the American public.

“The four finalists demonstrate how pig farmers embrace the We Care ethical principles as their daily standard of care,” said National Pork Board President Steve Rommereim, a pig farmer from Alcester, South Dakota. “They represent these principles by being the best in pig farming.”

The 2018 finalists are: Patrick Bane of Arrowsmith, Illinois; Bill Luckey of Columbus, Nebraska; Brad Lundell of Kiron, Iowa; and Kevin Rasmussen of Goldfield, Iowa. The four finalists will meet with an expert panel of third-party judges in Chicago. The judges will view videos produced at the finalists’ farms and will interview each of them. Through Aug. 29, the public can vote once a day per person per email address for their favorite finalist at The winner will be announced the week of Oct. 1 based on the judges’ scores and the online voting.

Patrick Bane – Arrowsmith, Illinois
Raising pigs has been a life-long passion for Patrick Bane, whose family has been raising pigs for three generations. Bane raises 74,000 pigs on his farm in west-central Illinois, where he focuses on protecting public health, hiring the best people and maintaining herd health.

Bill Luckey – Columbus, Nebraska
Farming and raising pigs is a family tradition for Bill Luckey, who is a fourth-generation farmer. Luckey, along with his wife and three sons, market 10,000 pigs a year. They also raise cattle, corn and soybeans on their farm.

Brad Lundell, Kiron, Iowa
Being a good caretaker of the pigs drives Brad Lundell’s passion. Learning from five generations of family farming, Lundell hopes consumers see why pig farming is family-oriented. With the help of his wife Sarah, and four children, they also raise turkeys, corn and soybeans.

Kevin Rasmussen, Goldfield, Iowa
Employee care is important in providing a safe product at KLR Pork, where Rasmussen markets 26,000 pigs a year from his farrow-to-finish farm. As a fourth-generation Iowa farmer, he considers the employees who work for him as family, and that makes all the difference in the product they produce.

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Animal Ag Bites 8/20

carrie muehling

  • The IDEAg Group LLC announces a new partnership with Sioux Nation Ag Center at Dakotafest 2018. Dakotafest takes place Aug. 21-23 at Schlaffman Farm in Mitchell, South Dakota. Over 500 exhibitors will offer trade show booths, educational sessions and family-friendly offerings. Download the Dakotafest mobile app at for show information.
  • The challenges and questions generated by market and regulatory changes regarding the use of antibiotics in food animals will be discussed by industry stakeholders, policy makers, academics and federal analysts at a workshop Sept. 6-7, 2018, in Washington, D.C. The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Economic Research Service is organizing this workshop in collaboration with Farm Foundation. There is no charge to participate in this workshop, however, registration is required by close of business on Aug. 30, 2018.
  • Horse owners are relying on their veterinarians more and more for vaccination and deworming program recommendations, according to the 2018 American Horse Publications online survey, sponsored by Zoetis. Survey respondents said equine veterinarians are the No. 1 influence on horse-owner product purchase decisions for both vaccines and dewormers.
  • A team of food science students from Brigham Young University won the 2018 Idaho Milk Processors Association new product competition Saturday. They earned $10,000 at IMPA’s annual meeting in Sun Valley, Idaho, for their first-place-winning new product idea — Sparkling Scoops, a carbonated, hard-pack ice cream, sold in single-serve, pull-top cans.
  • The American Feed Industry Association (AFIA) and FAMI-QS, the Quality and Safety System for Specialty Feed Ingredients, renewed the strategic agreement of cooperation for the development of specific certification programs for the expansion of the FAMI-QS Code in the U.S. animal food manufacturing industry. For more information on the program, visit
  • The CattleFax Trends+ Cow-Calf Webinar on Sept. 12, 2018, will address escalating trade tensions with China, renegotiating NAFTA, and continued expansion across all three U.S. protein sectors, subjects which add to market uncertainty and shape market expectations for the future. Producers and industry leaders can visit to access program details and register for the webinar.
  • Arizona native Chad Page has been selected as the winner of the 2018 Sheep Heritage Foundation‘s Memorial Scholarship.
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BEEF Continues to Build Demand at Sturgis Rally

Carrie Muehling

About half a million motorcycle enthusiasts gathered in Sturgis, S.D., for the 78th Annual Sturgis Motorcycle Rally™. While there they heard a lot about beef and beef production, thanks to the South Dakota Beef Industry Council (SDBIC) and the Beef Checkoff Program.

As the official meat of the rally, beef was prominent in signage, billboards, social media and other publicity, thanks to the SDBIC. Team Beef members and SDBIC directors participated in the annual mayor’s ride and VIP event, helped with the Legendary 5K run, while a Burger Battle featured 12 teams grilling beef. SDBIC President Eric Sumption and director, Justin Tupper served as judges at that event. Supported by SDBIC and the checkoff, all sponsorship events generated additional awareness of beef and those who produce it. Rally attendees went home with a better appreciation for the importance of South Dakota beef production, as well as the value of beef to the diet, according to Suzy Geppert, SDBIC executive director.

“Motorcycle enthusiasts from across the country and around the world find great value in this iconic event,” says Geppert. “These people come from all walks of life and have a passion for the celebration of this American pursuit and the image it conveys. Sending them home with the same kind of passion for beef expands and strengthens our base of beef lovers.”

Two Louisiana chefs, Kevin Cote’ and Wayne Cooper, were declared the 2018 Sturgis Rally “Burger Battle Champions. As winners of the all-beef Burger Battle, they will go on to compete for $100,000 in the World Food Championships in Orange Beach, Ala., in November.

For more information about the South Dakota Beef Industry Council and the Sturgis Rally partnership, follow SDBIC on Facebook or visit

2018 Sturgis Motorcycle Rally Photo Album

Beef, Beef Checkoff