KJAN Ag/Outdoor

From County extension to conservation to grain prices, we provide lots of information every day on KJAN.  Here is some of that information on the web too!  We hope you find it useful.

Northern Iowan to be featured on cereal boxes


October 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

RUDD, Iowa (AP) – A northern Iowa man will be featured on the back of cereal boxes as part of a promotion for farmers. The Hy-Vee cornflakes box with the picture of Rudd farmer Larry Bortz will be released next month or in December. Four other farmers will appear on other boxes.

Under the headline “Agriculture Works Here,” the promotional ads include a photo of Bortz or the others and point out that “nobody beats the American farmer when it comes to producing food.” The ads direct people to a website, agricultureworkshere.com, where they can learn various farm facts.

The Mason City Globe Gazette says the joint promotion involves Farm Credit Services of America, an Omaha, Nebraska-based, financial services organization, and West Des Moines-based Hy-Vee grocery stores.

Thousands use trail app, fundraising underway to expand it

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Developers says more than five-thousand Iowans are using the “Iowa by Trail” application that contains information on 18-hundred miles of trails in the state. The app has details on the location, distance, and type of trails, as well as points of interest close by. Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation spokeswoman, Kerri Sorrell, says as far as she knows Iowa is the first state to have an all-inclusive trail application like this.  “We hear it all the time that people want to get outdoors and discover the natural resources and areas that Iowa has to offer, they just don’t know how to do it or how to get there,” Sorrell says.

She believes it’s has a lot to do with the people in the state. ” I think it says a lot about Iowa’s connection with the land and with its natural surroundings.” The app became available for iPhone users this summer, and Sorrell, says the organization is working to bring the app to android devices.  “We think it’s a really great tool for people who are either experienced with trails or have never been on a trail before to get out and discover new things about their community, find places that they may have never traveled to before,” Sorrell says.

The I-N-H-F was awarded a grant of 40-thousand dollars by the Wellmark Foundation toward the android phone effort. The money must be matched by mid-December. If all goes as planned, Iowa by Trail should be available for all users early next year. Developers says the app has been used 56-thousand times by iPhone owners alone since May.

(Radio Iowa)

Cass County Sheriff’s Office looking into Co-Op embezzlement allegations

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office is investigating allegations an employee of the 21st Century Co-Op may have embezzled money. According to Sheriff Darby McLaren, the manager of the Co-Op asked for the investigation, which also includes a review of records by the Auditor’s Office. McLaren said because it is a complex, on-going investigation, additional details will not be released at this time. 21st Century Co-Op has locations in Cumberland, Massena, Atlantic, Fontanelle, and Greenfield.

A letter from Board President Rick Wheatley to the Co-Op’s stockholders dated October 3rd, said:

“This letter is to inform you as a Member of the 21st Century Cooperative about criminal activity that was recently uncovered and is being addressed by the Cass County Sheriff, the board of directors, and Coop management.

Late last week, the Coop learned that an employee has embezzled funds from the Coop. The employee was discharged. The theft was immediately reported to law enforcement authorities and investigations by the Cass County Sheriff’s office and our auditors are ongoing.

We ask that you keep this information confidential and refer any inquiries you may receive to Randy Daugherty, General Manager of the Coop. We will keep you informed as more definitive information is available.

The audit has been completed and we are pleased to report another successful year. Dividend checks will be distributed at next month’s annual meeting. In addition to last year’s business, we will also be paying off past equity for the years 2004 and 2005.

The 21st Century Cooperative remains a financially strong organization. We will continue to provide the highest quality service to our members and customers.”

Pig farms rebound from virus; meat prices may drop


October 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Pork prices hit record highs this summer as farmers weren’t able to feed the demand — mostly because a virus had killed millions of their baby pigs. There is good news for pork lovers in the latest U.S. Department of Agriculture production update, as it shows more piglets are surviving and producers are building up pork herds. Iowa, the nation’s leading pork producer, reported nearly 5.5 million baby pigs were born between June and August — the largest number in 20 years.

New farm procedures helped reduced the spread of the porcine epidemic diarrhea virus, such as disinfecting trucks and equipment. Many producers are optimistic the virus is under control but some fear winter’s return because the virus thrives in cold, damp conditions.

Plenty of Propane


October 11th, 2014 by Mark Saylor

Energy suppliers say there’s plenty of liquid propane available for Iowans to heat their homes in the winter ahead. Deb Grooms, executive director of the Iowa Propane Gas Association, says a series of events last year led to a record spike in prices, but they also will mean a better plan this time around. Farmers need to dry the grain before it’s stored so it doesn’t spoil. Grooms says that extra pressure on L-P supplies last October caused a shortage for residential customers. Grooms says those residential customers were told to top off their tanks this summer. She says farmers got the same advice from Ag Secretary Bill Northey. Governor Branstad declared an energy disaster last fall when farmers throughout the Midwest used a record amount of the fuel to dry their corn so it could be properly stored. That depleted supplies for home owners who were forced to pay record high prices topping five-dollars a gallon.


(Radio Iowa)

USDA ups expected record corn, soybean harvest

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The U.S. Department of Agriculture says the expected record corn and soybean harvest will be slightly bigger than previously estimated. Farmers are expected to bring in 14.5 billion bushels of corn, up from 14.4 billion last month, and 3.93 billion bushels of soybeans, up 14 million bushels. The October estimate released Friday boosted the per-acre yield for both major crops because of an extended period of late summer warmth in the Midwest.

The USDA says 22 states will set corn record yields this year. Corn farmers are expected to harvest a national average of 174.2 bushels per acre, a significant increase over the record of 169.  A dozen states will set new soybean yield records, and there’s expected to be 47.1 bushels per acre, up from the record of 44.

Lawyer: Jail term for egg exec would be improper

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 10th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) — A defense attorney says disgraced egg producer Austin “Jack” DeCoster should be kept out of jail when he’s sentenced for food safety violations linked to a 2010 salmonella outbreak. Attorney Frank Volpe filed a motion this week arguing that it would be unconstitutional for DeCoster to receive jail or home confinement. He says the only appropriate sentence is a fine and probation.

DeCoster and his son, Peter, pleaded guilty to misdemeanor charges of introducing adulterated food into interstate commerce. They face up to a year in jail. Their company, Quality Egg, pleaded guilty to bribing a federal inspector, selling misbranded food and introducing adulterated food into interstate commerce.

Volpe argues DeCoster is being held responsible because he was a corporate officer and had no criminal intent. Sentencing hasn’t been scheduled.

USDA Report 10-09-2014

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

October 9th, 2014 by Chris Parks

w/ Denny Heflin


Mosquito/Pest Mgmt. course for commercial applicators set for 10/23


October 9th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Officials with ISU Extension in Shelby County say the County will host a Mosquito/Public Health Pest Management Continuing Instructional Course (CIC) for commercial pesticide applicators on Thursday, Oct. 23rd. The program will be shown at locations across Iowa through the Iowa State University Extension and Outreach Pest Management and the Environment program.ISU Extension

The local site for the Oct. 23 CIC is at the Shelby Co. Extension office at 906 6th Street, Harlan. Registration begins at 8:30 a.m. followed by sessions from 9 to 11:30 a.m. The registration fee is $35 on or before Oct. 16 and $45 after Oct. 16. To register or to obtain additional information about the CIC, contact the ISU Extension and Outreach office in Shelby County by phoning 712-755-3104.

The 2014 course will provide continuing instructional credit for commercial pesticide applicators certified in categories 7D (Community Insect Management), 8 (Public Health Pest Control) and 10 (Demonstration and Research). The course will cover topics such as an update on laws and regulations; effects on groundwater and other non-target sites; pesticide toxicity and exposure; pesticide stewardship; and an update on mosquitoes, ticks and other public health pests.

Additional information about this and other courses offered through the PME Program may be accessed at www.extension.iastate.edu/PME.

DNR Investigates manure release in Guthrie County

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 8th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources (DNR) is investigating manure released from a cattle feedlot about 10 miles west of Guthrie Center to a tributary to David’s Creek last week.

Owner of the 14,000-head-capacity beef feedlot, Matt Van Meter, reported the manure release at 3:34 p.m. Oct. 2, about eight hours after discovering a break in an irrigation pipe. Van Meter estimates 200,000 gallons of liquids from a solids settling basin were released, but the amount is uncertain because he’s unsure when the pipe broke.

A DNR environmental specialist tested ammonia levels in the runoff and water quality in the stream Thursday night and Friday. Field tests showed ammonia levels of at least 10 parts per million in the runoff from the feedlot, which is high enough to cause a fish kill. However, it was raining Wednesday night, stream levels were high and field tests did not show elevated ammonia levels in the stream.

Friday, the DNR checked the stream for 10 miles below the feedlot and did not find any dead fish. The Van Meter feedlot has a national pollutant discharge elimination system (NPDES) permit which allows facilities to discharge pollutants under certain conditions, such as heavy rainfall, if the permit conditions are followed.

The DNR is checking records and investigating the incident to determine if the facility was operating according to NPDES permit conditions. However, the DNR expects to take enforcement action on failing to report the manure release within six hours of discovery. DNR may take additional enforcement action depending upon results of the investigation and laboratory results from stream samples.