"Cutworms are a natural part of the prairie habitat. Some cutworms are likely to be in most crop fields in any given year, but usually at levels well below where they would be an economical concern or worth trying to manage. However, there are some species of cutworms that in some years can get to levels that are of economical concern in field crops.
Most Common Species
In Manitoba, seedlings of crops may be damaged in late May or June by sporadic outbreaks of cutworms. The redbacked cutworm (Euxoa ochrogaster), can be one of the most damaging species.
Damaging populations often include larvae of other cutworm species, particularly the darksided cutworm (Euxoa messoria) and the dingy cutworm (Feltia jaculifera).
The glassy cutworm (Apamea devastator) can sometimes be abundant in grassy crops. Army cutworm (Euxoa auxiliaris) may move into Manitoba as it migrates from the Rocky Mountains to lower elevations, but rarely are they at economical levels in Manitoba as they can be in Alberta and Saskatchewan.
Knowing the species of cutworm can be important because some species complete the larval stages earlier in the year than others, and some species are more likely to feed on and clip stems than others.
All cutworms belong to a family of moths known as Noctuidae. Cutworm larvae have four sets of abdominal prolegs and curl up when disturbed.
Redbacked cutworm: Larvae of redbacked cutworms have two broad dull-red stripes along the length of their back (Fig. 1)
The head is yellowish-brown. Mature larvae are about 38mm long.
Young larvae make small holes and notches in the foliage. Older larvae eat into the stems and often sever them."
"Canadian agricultural operations incurred an average of 83 cents in operating expenses per dollar in gross farm receipts in 2015. This amount was unchanged from 2010.
When eliminating the impact of price change, gross farm receipts totalled $69.4 billion in 2015, up 4.7% from 2010 (in 2015 constant dollars), with larger revenue farms responsible for most of the increase.
Oilseed and grain type farms continued to grow in importance, accounting for the largest share (37.8%) of total receipts in 2015.
Total operating expenses were up 6.6% from 2010 (in 2015 constant dollars) to $57.5 billion in 2015.
The total value of capital owned or rented by Canadian farms rose 36.8% from 2011 (in 2016 constant dollars) to $509.7 billion in 2016—mainly driven by the increased value of land and buildings.
The analytical document ‘Farmers are adapting to evolving markets’ is now available. This article is from an analytical series based on 2016 Census of Agriculture data.
Based on the data from the 2016 Census of Agriculture, the infographic ‘The Business of Agriculture’ (Catalogue number11–627-M) provides a visual overview of gross farm receipts, operating expenses and farm capital in Canada.
The national snapshot, 2016 Census of Agriculture as well as provincial highlights are now available online."
"Alberta cereal crops from 2016 that remained in the field over winter are gradually being dealt with.
The low quality of that material has prompted Alberta’s Agriculture Financial Services Corp. to introduce a temporary Salvage Grade factor to deal with the high volume of low quality cereals.
‘Clients who have sold grain at a lower price than the grade factors reflect can submit the sales receipt for consideration,’ the AFSC says.
‘For 2016 unharvested crop, receipts from CGC (Canadian Grain Commission) licensed and unlicensed buyers will be used, providing they are arms-length transactions as defined by AFSC.’"
"Plans to bring most of Canada’s new trade deal with the European Union into effect by July 1 may be unravelling due to a new dispute over who gets to import EU cheese.
Under the terms of the Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA), Canada has agreed to allow nearly 18,000 additional tonnes of European cheese to be imported tariff free.
But CBC News has learned that when Canadian officials briefed their European counterparts on how they would allocate the quota for importing this new cheese, not everyone around Europe’s cabinet table felt Canada’s approach lived up to the spirit of the negotiations.
A European official, speaking on the condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak, characterized the state of things as a ‘row.’
Canadians haven’t been transparent enough about several aspects of CETA’s implementation, the source said, and presented the cheese quota decision as a non-negotiable fait accompli. It was a final straw for upset Europeans who had been otherwise eager to get on with the deal.
The source said Canada informed the EU that 60 per cent of the new import quota would go to domestic dairy producers and processors. Europeans fear they won’t use it, so fewer new cheeses compete with their domestic products."
"Michael Gertler wants to know why there aren’t more organic producers in Saskatchewan.
The University of Saskatchewan sociologist, along with colleagues JoAnn Jaffe from the University of Regina and Mary Beckie at the University of Alberta, has questions about restructuring in the farm sector, particularly what could be inhibiting growth in the organic sector.
‘As social scientists deeply interested in agriculture, we asked ourselves, ‘what’s been holding it back?’ ’ he said.
Although they are just beginning their work and are looking for funding to continue, Gertler said they have identified six factors that limit organic farming in Saskatchewan.
‘We are historically ‘next year country’ for a reason,’ he said, referring to the boom-or-bust nature of farming. ‘Within organic, those ups and downs are amplified,’ he said.
‘We’re dealing with an even more volatile set of markets and a more volatile set of production conditions.’
Yield and price uncertainty make economic decisions more difficult.
‘You have to make a living but you also have to make a life in rural Saskatchewan,’ Gertler said at an organic spring workshop. ‘And it’s harder, because you have to convince everybody around you that you’re not nuts.’"
"Health Canada won’t issue a final decision on whether it will ban imidacloprid for at least six months, says a horticultural industry representative.
Last November, the Pest Management Regulatory Agency proposed to ban the use of imidacloprid, a neonicotinoid insecticide, because it was accumulating in water near agricultural land. That was reportedly putting aquatic insects at risk and threatening animals that rely on those insects for food.
Craig Hunter, who works in research and crop protection with the Ontario Fruit and Vegetable Growers Association, said the PMRA is considering more information before it makes a decision.
‘Their plan is to make their final determination by December…. and probably be published by the spring of (2018).’
A Health Canada spokesperson didn’t provide a date for the final decision. The public and agriculture industry representatives submitted comments about the PMRA proposal from late November until the last week of March. Health Canada experts continue to review that information.
‘We’ve received a significant number of comments (during) the consultation period,’ the spokesperson said. ‘We’re still going through them, so we can’t give on timeline on when to expect a final decision.’
The Bayer product was once the most popular insecticide in the world. It is used as a seed treatment on field crops, but is very important to fruit, vegetables and potato producers in Canada.
On the Prairies it’s used on wheat crops to control wireworm."
"Ontario’s flower growing community has expressed significant concern over recently proposed changes to Ontario’s minimum wage and employment standards.
The proposed rapid change to minimum wage is expected to result in profound damage to the Ontario floriculture sector, the loss of numerous family farms, and a reduction to jobs available in the province of Ontario.
Labour represents the single largest cost for flower farmers in Ontario, accounting for up to 30 per cent of the total costs of production.
While flower growers are committed to the wellbeing of Ontario’s workforce, an increase of $3.60 per hour per worker over an 18-month period will not provide sufficient time for Ontario businesses to prepare and plan for the increased cost of production. "
"After last year’s punishing summer drought, spring 2017 has seen Ontario growers rushing to plant their fields between rainstorms, hail, frost and even a near tornado.
Ontario asparagus, first on the local scene, started early with a surprising but short-lived warm spell in mid-April before the cold settled in.
‘Without question, 2017 will not be remembered as a banner year from a yield perspective,’ said Ken Wall, co-owner of Port Burwell, Ontario-based Sandy Shore Farms.
‘But a number of us are holding out hope that we can keep this deal going at a little higher level than normal in June, when production normally tails off,’ Wall said May 30.
The low Canadian dollar gives growers a strong incentive to send product to the U.S., said Bernie Solymar, executive director of Asparagus Farmers of Ontario."
"Farmers are starting to think about early fungicide applications.
Holly Derksen, field crop pathologist with Manitoba Agriculture, says after reports of hail in canola last week, applying fungicide might be a good option to consider.
‘After a hail event your crop is definitely more susceptible to blackleg, but the key is if you are going to use a fungicide, that you get in there as soon as possible after that hail event, really before those wounds close up so that you are able to protect the plant.’
Derksen says it’s important to weigh your options."
"The world of fresh blueberries is changing rapidly, and all numbers are pointing toward a growing customer base, and growing consumption numbers.
The U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council recently commissioned an assessment study to identify the consumer and business segments best suited to absorb the growing volume of blueberries coming to market.
‘We were pleased to find that, among the top fruits — including bananas, strawberries, grapes and citrus – blueberries were the only one expecting increased consumption in 2017,’ says Mark Villata, executive director of the Folsom, Calif.-based organization. "
"Diamondback larvae, cutworms and more
While continuing with early-season scouting, look for signs of cutworm losses, crops held back by extended flea beetle pressure and anything else unusual.
Diamondback moth larvae have been found feeding on young canola plants, but to date these cases are few and far between. Some traps in Alberta and Manitoba suggest elevated risk, but even if cases pick up, damage to young canola plants by diamondback moth larvae rarely warrants insecticide control. Parasitism by natural enemies will usually keep populations in check throughout the season."
"Over the past week, most areas of the province received at least 10 mm of rain, with the western areas of the Southern, Central and North West Regions as well as southern areas of the Peace Region receiving over 20–30 mm of rain.
About 96 per cent of crops across the province have now been seeded and about 86 per cent have emerged. Regionally, seeding is complete in the South and Central Regions. For the rest of the province, seeding progress is at 97 per cent in the North East, 95 per cent in the North West and 78 per cent in the Peace Region. However, with an improvement in weather, these Regions could see some more barley and oats seeded. Provincially, fall seeded crops are in the head emergence stage, while the growth stages for other cereals, oilseeds and pulses is somewhat varied, due to the delay in seeding in most parts of the province.
Provincially, crop growing conditions are 80 per cent good to excellent, above the 5-year (2012–2016) average of 73 per cent. About 80 per cent of spring wheat, 83 per cent of barley, 76 per cent of oats, 77 per cent of canola, 83 per cent of dry peas, 89 per cent of potatoes and 94 per cent of sugar beets are in good to excellent condition (See Table 1).
Multiple rainfall over the past several weeks have led to above normal soil moisture reserves in both the North East and North West Regions. Provincially, surface soil moisture is rated (sub-surface soil moisture ratings shown in brackets) at eight (nine) per cent poor to fair, 42 (43) per cent good, 36 (35) per cent excellent and 14 (13) per cent excessive (See Table 2). Pasture conditions (tame hay conditions are in brackets) for the province are reported as eight (10) per cent poor to fair, 60 (58) per cent good and 32 (32) per cent excellent."
"When it comes to villains and scoundrels, it’s hard for other weeds to compete with Palmer amaranth.
The pigweed species can produce 500,000 to one million seeds per plant. It can grow five to 10 centimetres per day and herbicide resistant plants can rapidly spread the trait to other Palmer amaranth weeds.
It also has a nasty reputation.
‘Palmer amaranth built its reputation on how it devastated the cotton industry in the south after the near complete reliance on glyphosate in Roundup Ready cotton,’ said Bob Hartzler, Iowa State University weed scientist.
Given its notoriety, it’s not surprising that American and Canadian weed scientists rank it as the worst weed in North America.
In late May, the Weed Science Society of America (WSSA) released the results of a survey of about 200 weed scientists from Canada and the U.S.
The experts concluded that Palmer amaranth is the most troublesome weed in broadleaf crops and in fruits and vegetables, while common lamb’s quarters was the most common weed."
"Seeding has essentially wrapped up in the province, according to Saskatchewan Agriculture’s Weekly Crop Report. Producers have 99 per cent of the crop in the ground, ahead of the five-year (2012–2016) seeding average of 97 per cent for this time of year. The northwest region is the furthest behind with 97 per cent seeded. Across the province, there are still a few fields of oats and barley, as well as some greenfeed and silage, left to be seeded.
The much-needed rainfall received this week will help replenish topsoil moisture and allow crops to advance. While much of the north has surplus topsoil moisture at this time, many areas in the south were relieved to see rain as crops, hay land and pastures were in need of significant moisture.
Prior to the recent rainfall, topsoil moisture conditions were deteriorating in southern and central areas of the province. Provincially, cropland topsoil moisture is currently rated as seven per cent surplus, 52 per cent adequate, 35 per cent short and six per cent very short. Hay land and pasture topsoil moisture is rated as four per cent surplus, 43 per cent adequate, 41 per cent short and 12 per cent very short.
Overall crop development has improved with the warm and wet weather. Sixty per cent of fall cereals, 62 per cent of spring cereals, 53 of oilseeds and 70 per cent of pulse crops are at their normal stages of development for this time of year. The majority of crops are in fair-to-excellent condition.
Persistent wind has damaged crops and delayed in-crop weed control operations in many areas. Cutworms, flea beetles, localized flooding, hail and lack of moisture have also caused damage this past week.
Producers are busy completing seeding, controlling weeds and getting ready for haying.
SaskPower reports that there have been 149 reports of power line contact this year, with 19 incidents reported in June."
"Reducing tillage has increased cash flow, boosted bottom lines and improved soil health.
One of the downsides has been minor weeds becoming major problems.
Some fall annual weeds have thrived where steel now fails to find them.
Worse, pests like shepherd’s purse have managed to escape some of the handiest herbicides, such as Group 2 products, by becoming immune to their effects.
Shepherd’s purse, or Capsella bursa-pastoris, is one of those broadleaf weeds that remained easily controlled until the past few years.
Researchers at Agriculture Canada’s research centre in Lacombe, Alta., have identified a variety of fall annuals that haunt fields early in the season, robbing the top layers of the soil of the most recently deposited and converted nutrients.
The research has shown that early season weed removal is critical to high yielding crops.
Shepherd’s purse, stinkweed, flixweed, narrow-leaved hawk’s beard and cleavers all fall into that category and have all become serious field pests since the abandonment of cultivation."
"ADAMA Agricultural Solutions recently announced the acquisition of a number of crop protection products in the US from Syngenta AG – the Bravo (Chlorothalonil) family of fungicides, including the products Bravo Weather Stik®, Bravo Ultrex® and Bravo® ZN, as well as the insecticides Fulfill® (Pymetrozine), Trigard® and Armor® (both containing Cyromazine).
As part of the transaction, ADAMA has acquired the product brands and related registrations as well as received the requisite active ingredient and product data to support the registrations. The products were acquired by ADAMA in connection with associated transactions related to ChemChina’s acquisition of Syngenta, which was completed in May."
Looks like Syngenta is shuffling old questionable products to Adama in the US.
"Each year growers are being asked to provide more sustainability information to stakeholders, including processors, wholesalers, retailers and consumers. Matching this trend, 81 percent of farmers/ranchers agree that customers of U.S. grown crops and livestock are growing more concerned and focused on the environmental sustainability of the products they buy*.
To meet this need, Bayer introduces Grow On, an initiative to provide growers with tools to identify, implement and communicate sustainable farming practices. Grow On provides citrus, grape, pome and stone fruit, potato, tree nut and vegetable growers with the resources needed to continue to sustainably produce safe, nutritious food for the growing global population.
‘Generations of growers have rapidly embraced new agricultural technologies that not only have improved their environmental sustainability but also increased yields and farm productivity,’ said Jennifer Maloney, Bayer food chain and sustainability manager. ‘Through Grow On, growers can identify products that achieve sustainability benefits in six key areas and then utilize tools to share those benefits with stakeholders.’
The agriculture sustainability focus areas of Grow On are:
- Integrated Pest Management (IPM) practices to manage pests with minimal environmental impact;
- Optimizing plant water usage and water quality;
- Improving soil health and plant nutrient uptake;
- Reducing greenhouse gas emissions and fuel use;
- Ensuring safe work environments; and
- Reducing food waste by preventing pre-harvest loss and extending post-harvest shelf life."
"Bee Vectoring Technologies (the ‘Company’ or ‘BVT’) announced the completion of trials on strawberries and indoor tomatoes in Spain, Italy, and Greece. The trials were conducted using the BVT System consisting of a bumble bee hive with proprietary dispenser technology through which BVT’s proprietary plant beneficial microbe BVT-CR7 is delivered to crops using bumble bees.
Final results from the trials are being collected and will be analyzed in the coming weeks for conclusions and learnings. Initial data collected is confirming positive results from previous successful North American trials:
* The BVT System contributes to the control of Botrytis (grey mould), a common and costly disease in strawberries
* The BVT System increases marketable yields
* The trials indicate improved shelf life of the strawberries
* In tomatoes the BVT System visually improved the health of stem wounds in the plant "
* Merger of equals to create a leading global specialty chemical company with approximately $20 billion enterprise value at announcement
- More than $3.5 billion value creation through annual cost synergies in excess of $400 million
- Enhanced returns from improved growth profile in highly attractive end markets and key geographies such as the United States and China
- Opportunities for stronger joint innovation platforms and shared knowledge in sustainability
- Stronger balance sheet and cash flow generation; plan to continue Clariant’s attractive dividend policy
- Transaction targeted to close by year end 2017
- Previously announced IPO of Huntsman’s Pigments and Additives business (Venator) to continue as planned in summer 2017
This all surfactants and formulants business on the agrichemical side.
"Worrying new figures released recently by leading economic research house Oxford Economics and agriculture specialists The Andersons Centre, in partnership with the Crop Protection Association, show the potentially devastating impact of a ban of common herbicides to the British economy and the agricultural sector.
A ban by the European Union on herbicides containing glyphosate could have several harmful economic consequences, it would:
- Lead to a reduction in farm output of £940 million
- Reduce tax revenues generated by agriculture and its supply chain by £193 million, equivalent to the annual salaries of over 7,000 nurses.
- See wheat production fall by 20%
- An EU wide ban could even push up food prices.
Glyphosate is an active substance in the production of herbicides, and has been safely used by the majority of British farmers for weed control over the past 40 years. Use of glyphosate has facilitated faster preparation of land prior to planting, increased the number of crop rotations possible, and led to higher yields than other weed management options. It is key to the agricultural sector, without it modern British farming as we know it could disappear."
"DuPont (NYSE: DD) recently announced that the waiting periods for the approval of its transactions with FMC Corporation (‘FMC’) under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 have expired without a request for additional information and documentary material by the U.S. Department of Justice.
The expiration of the last of the two waiting periods occurred at 11:59 p.m. EST on June 9.
The expirations satisfy certain conditions to the closing of the proposed transactions with FMC, which include FMC acquiring a portion of DuPont Crop Protection business, including certain research and development capabilities, and DuPont acquiring substantially all of FMC’s Health & Nutrition business.
DuPont continues to expect the FMC transactions to close in the fourth quarter of 2017, subject to the closing of the DuPont and Dow merger, in addition to other customary closing conditions, including regulatory approvals."
"Isagro USA, Inc. (Isagro) has signed an agreement to market Vestaron Corporation’s (Vestaron) Spear®-T biological insecticide for use on greenhouse vegetables in the United States.
Under the terms of the agreement, Isagro will immediately begin marketing Spear-T in the USA as an effective and environmentally conscious choice for the control of the greenhouse vegetable industry’s toughest pests – thrips, whiteflies and spider mites.
‘Building a dynamic portfolio of biological and organic crop protection in addition to plant beneficial nutrient products has been our priority for several years in the United States,’ according to John Paul Du Pre, Executive Chairman of Isagro USA."
"Chinese state-owned Sinochem and ChemChina are in merger talks to create the world’s biggest industrial chemicals firm, to be headed by Sinochem chief Ning Gaoning, four people with knowledge of the negotiations said.
A deal could be announced by the end of the year, the people said, potentially just months after ChemChina completes its own $43 billion purchase of Switzerland’s Syngenta, China’s biggest overseas deal to date.
A consolidation of Sinochem and ChemChina would be worth around $120 billion, one of the people said, topping companies like industrial chemicals giant BASF.
Talks to create a Chinese chemicals powerhouse were first reported last year, but were dismissed by both companies as rumour."
"A group of researchers from the University of Cordoba (UCO) has discovered the most effective way to manipulate the structure of a pheromone that makes it possible to prevent fungal infections in plants. The finding was been possible thanks to the work of postdoctoral researchers David Turrá and Stefania Vitale, who, together with their team in the Department of Genetics, have studied the structure adopted by the α-pheromone; a small protein that activates the cell receptors of fungi.
Fungus infections annually cause million dollar losses in different types of crops, destroying harvests that could feed hundreds of thousands of people. For centuries, producers have sought ways to block the action of these parasitic organisms, many of which infect the plant through the roots.
Although they currently resort to phytosanitary products called fungicides, these products can contaminate the environment and generate resistance in pathogenic microorganisms, making their use increasingly controversial. Biotechnology and scientific research are essential to continue improving the treatments and prevention of this type of diseases in plants."
"Starpharma Holdings Ltd announced that it has completed a transaction to sell its agrochemicals and Priostar® business (Starpharma Agrochemicals) to Agrium, Inc., for A$35 million in cash consideration. The Starpharma Agrochemical business will be operated by Agrium’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Loveland Products, Inc.
The cash proceeds from the sale of Starpharma Agrochemicals have further strengthened Starpharma’s balance sheet and will allow Starpharma to focus its resources and activities on its core pharmaceutical development portfolios, including DEP® drug delivery.
Starpharma intends to use the funds to accelerate the development and commercialisation of its higher-value pharmaceutical dendrimer-based products and to explore other opportunities in this area of the business.
With the net proceeds from the transaction, Starpharma estimates a cash balance of greater than $60 million at 30 June 2017."
"Sumitomo Chemical and BASF, two of the world’s leading chemical companies, announced recently their entry into a collaboration agreement for the development of a new fungicide. The agreement brings together Sumitomo Chemical’s and BASF’s innovation skills to deliver a novel fungicidal compound to farmers around the world.
This compound, discovered by Sumitomo Chemical, demonstrates high efficacy for the control of major plant diseases, including those that have developed resistance to other available fungicides.
‘Together with BASF, we will be able to provide more growers with the opportunity to experience the benefits of this new fungicide, which will play an important role in the resistance management of difficult to control plant diseases.
Through this partnership, we show our commitment to sustainable agricultural production,’ explained Ray Nishimoto, Sumitomo Chemical’s Representative Director & Senior Managing Executive Officer, President of Health & Crop Sciences Sector during the official signing ceremony in Germany."
"The TomatoesNZ board approved a funding contribution for a Lincoln University post-doctoral student to undertake some research on the use of Tamarixia, the new Tomato and Potato Psyllid (TPP) biocontrol agent, in glasshouses.
Tamarixia is a small wasp that is a parasitoid of TPP. Tamarixia will actively seek out and target TPP within solanaceous crops and lay its eggs on the TPP. Once hatched, the Tamaraxia larva will consume the TPP nymph. Tamarixia is found naturally in North America and Mexico – where TPP is also found.
There is a belief that Tamarixia may not be useful in a glasshouse situation because biological control requires a base level population of the pest for sustenance, and growers have a ‘zero tolerance’ for TPP. Additionally there is the fear of introducing a Liberibacter infection, vectored by the TPP."
"DuPont announced that the waiting periods for the approval of its transactions with FMC Corporation under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act of 1976 have expired on Jun 9 without a request for additional information and documentary material by the U.S. Department of Justice.
The divestiture also satisfies conditional regulatory clearance required for the merger between DuPont and The Dow Chemical Company. DuPont expects the FMC Corp deal to close in the fourth quarter of 2017, subject to regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions, including the closing of the DuPont and Dow merge."
"The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced a settlement with Rockwood Chemical Company over an improperly stored and labeled agricultural pesticide at its facility in Brawley, Calif. The company, a pesticide re-packager and distributor, will pay a $50,929 civil penalty and has corrected all identified compliance issues.
The California Department of Pesticide Regulation inspected the Brawley facility, in Imperial County, in 2016. Based on those inspections, EPA asserted multiple violations under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA), which regulates the storage, labeling, distribution, sale, and use of pesticides in the U.S.
‘All types of violations-from improper containment areas to poor recordkeeping-can lead to spills or leaks of pesticides,’ said Alexis Strauss, EPA’s Acting Regional Administrator for the Pacific Southwest. ’Facilities that produce or refill pesticides must follow federal requirements to protect their workers, the public, and the environment.’ "
"Since Willowood USA started in 2010 in Roseburg, it has been growing quickly to provide crop protection products to farmers across the United States.
After being in business for two years, a company can qualify for the Fastest Growing Private 100 Companies Award through the Portland Business Journal. Having won the recognition five years in a row, Willowood received the Lighthouse Award this year.
‘My business has done really well and it just goes to show businesses can grow and flourish in Douglas County,’ said Brian Heinze, president and CEO. Heinze was presented with the award at a jungle-themed celebration and reception in Portland Thursday evening."
"In this rural outpost of just over 1,900 residents, a local college student has become a courtroom sketch artist, trailers on Main Street are ersatz offices for a major law firm, and members of an agricultural youth club are puzzled by a new metal detector at the local courthouse.
The changes are part of Elk Point’s selection as site of a multibillion-dollar defamation case pitting ABC News against South Dakota meat processor, Beef Products Inc. The company contends that ABC and reporter Jim Avila defamed it by referring to its signature product as ‘pink slime’ in 2012 broadcasts."
"Amazon announced plans to buy Whole Foods for $13.7 billion, and analysts are describing the move as a game-changer for the grocery industry.
Stock prices for Wal-Mart, Kroger, Supervalu, Costco and Target all dipped when news broke, some by about 6% and others as much as 15%.
It is unknown what all changes will come to Whole Foods, but analysts Elley Symmes, with Kantar Retail, and Brian Yarbrough, with Edward Jones, said the acquisition is the biggest disruption for the business since Wal-Mart began opening supercenters decades ago."
"As herbicide applications are made during the 2017 growing season, a main concern will be the possibility of herbicide drift injuring sensitive crops.
The normal culprit of off-target movement during herbicide applications is thought to be excessive winds. However, the absence of wind can result in off-target chemical applications, as well. To make matters worse, it’s more difficult to detect.
What is the weather anomaly that can cause this type of off-target herbicide movement? It’s called a temperature inversion.
An inversion is a really stable air mass, says Mandy Bish, University of Missouri research specialist.
In normal weather conditions, the earth absorbs solar radiation and emits that energy to its surroundings. The air around the surface of the earth warms up, expands, and rises, says Bish. Then cooler air settles down toward the ground until it’s warmed.
This cycle of shuffling air continues throughout the day, and it allows for herbicide particles to disperse. Once the sun sets on a clear night, the earth is no longer being warmed by the sun. As the soil surface cools, the warm air rises, and the cooler air settles near the ground. This is the onset of an inversion. The cool, more dense air remains under the less dense warm air, and the two air masses do not mix."
"Table grapes, like a lot of other California crops this season, will be off to a slightly later start than last year, but growers anticipate good quality due in part to ample rainfall during the winter and spring.
‘The season is progressing nicely,’ Pete Hronis, senior vice president of sales and marketing for Hronis Inc., Delano, Calif., said June 8.
‘Everyone is saying that we’re late,’ he said. ‘We’re late in comparison to the last few years, but we’re back to normal. During the drought, we were early.’
Hronis expects to kick off its season July 3 with flame seedless grapes, sugraones and the summer royal black variety.
The Fresno-based California Table Grape Commission’s initial estimate for this year’s crop was 112.1 million 19-pound box equivalents. Last year’s volume was 109 million boxes."
"Dow Chemical Co secured import approval from China for its next-generation Enlist corn variety and announced it would be commercially available in the United States and Canada next year, but the company was still awaiting approval of Enlist soybeans from the world’s top soy importer.
China on Wednesday approved two new varieties of genetically modified (GMO) crops for import from June 12, including Dow’s Enlist corn, engineered to combat weeds resistant to the widely used herbicide glyphosate, which is the main ingredient in Monsanto’s popular Roundup herbicide.
China, the top export market for U.S. agricultural products, had pledged in May to speed up a review of biotech products as part of a trade deal with the United States, expediting eight products that have been pending for more than four years."
"Farmers usually don’t spend a lot of time and thought on foreign policy. But the ongoing series of events involving leaders and governments of other nations has begun to capture slightly more of our attention than usual.
We have been very successful exporting our ag production to other countries. Even with our growing population, farmers can produce far more of many commodities for than the domestic market can use. From cotton to cattle, producers no longer ignore the growing portion of our output that leaves our borders.
International trade has become more complicated than just stand alone agreements to buy one specific product. Previous trade negotiations have shown that while nations overall may come out ahead, results for specific industries vary according to political and diplomatic tradeoffs.
It is not paranoid for farmers to be nervous about possible changes in our trade agreements. Frankly ag has been very fortunate during my career to see expanding opportunities to sell overseas. Not only is there is no guarantee that will continue to improve, it could even diminish in the future. Currently the emphasis on manufacturing jobs seems to be paramount in our trade goals."
The same-day service is already available in 20 markets in Florida, Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Tennessee, and that option will soon be available in Alabama and Virginia as well as numerous other cities in the states it already serves.
By 2020, same-day grocery delivery will be available for all Publix markets, according to a news release. To offer the service, Publix has been partnering with Instacart since July."
‘It’s taking far too long with the undersecretary positions that we submitted to the White House,’ said Perdue. Six nominees, including deputy secretary, were undergoing background checks by the FBI and Office of Government Ethics. ‘There doesn’t seem to be a lot of urgency in those areas to get people cleared,’ said the secretary."
"Negotiations to update the North American Free Trade Agreement could begin as early as August, and many people in the ag industry are hoping a new deal gets done quickly.
However, the past-president of the U.S. National Pork Producers Council said pushing ahead with NAFTA re-negotiations is unwise because other policy issues should be dealt with first.
John Weber said U.S. immigration is at the top of that list, and if it isn’t resolved first, it might be difficult to negotiate with Mexico on trade.
Weber, who served as NPCC president in 2016–17, met with representatives of Mexico’s pork industry last September. The tone of the meeting was negative.
‘All they wanted to talk about was how stupid the wall concept was and you don’t degrade our people as being thieves and crooks,’ Weber said in an interview at the World Pork Expo in Des Moines June 8.
‘We offended that country…. How can you sit down at a table with those folks and (renegotiate) NAFTA when these other issues haven’t been addressed?’"
"U.S. wheat supplies will be bigger than expected despite a snowstorm in early May that analysts worried had severely damaged the crop in Kansas, the top producing state, the U.S. Agriculture Department said on Friday.
More recently, farmers in spring wheat areas have been struggling with dry weather and given the modest moves in this USDA report, the trade will likely go back to watching the weather.
USDA boosted its forecast for U.S. winter wheat production to 1.250 billion bu. from 1.246 billion. It raised its yield projection in Kansas by two bu. per acre to 44.0 bu. per acre.
The government also said in its monthly supply and demand report that soybean stocks will swell by more than expected due to weakening soymeal usage that forced processing plants to slow down their crushing pace.
USDA left its outlook for corn stocks and production unchanged despite concerns about adverse weather hindering development of the recently seeded crop."