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.

New fuel choices arrive at Iowa gas pumps, touting more ethanol

Ag/Outdoor, News

October 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Most Iowans are seeing new choices in fuel at their local gas stations. Many pumps will now have ethanol stickers above two handles instead of just one. Due to a national change in how gasolines are being refined, some premium blends will now contain corn-based ethanol. Monte Shaw, executive director of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association, says it’s been a quiet, yet monumental, change. “Premium gasoline without ethanol is very expensive and so by blending that 10% ethanol into the premium, they can lower that cost,” Shaw says. “Consumers are really going to have some options. To me, that’s a good thing. Let consumers pick the product and the price point they want, but it is different than what we’ve seen for 30 years.”

The change has taken place over the past week or so in Iowa and depending on the service station’s supplier, the premium blends may now contain ethanol. Shaw says you’ll need to pay attention when you grab the gas pump handle. “Most Iowans are going to chose an 87 octane E-10, so you’ve gotta’ look for the 87 sticker now with the ethanol sticker combined, that’s going to be your cheaper gas,” Shaw says, “and I think you’re really going to see the sales of the non-ethanol go way down.”

In recent years, about 80 to 83-percent of all gasoline sold in Iowa has been an ethanol blend. Shaw predicts that number will rocket to 95-percent once this change-over is complete. “There’s two ways it can be a boon for ethanol,” Shaw says. “Number one, we probably will see more people go to that E-10 blend, but also, as the E-zero sales, the non-ethanol sales go down, retailers will have to really look hard at whether or not to keep selling that fuel or to put E-15 in that tank. E-15, which is approved for all 2001 and newer vehicles, is going to be even cheaper than E-10.”

Iowa is the nation’s number-one producer of ethanol with 41 plants in operation and three cellulosic ethanol plants under construction. Triple-A-Iowa says the statewide average price for gas is $3.42 a gallon, two cents below the national average. Iowa’s current average price is down ten-cents from a month ago and down 40-cents from a year ago.

(Radio Iowa)

Shelby Co. EMA to begin monitoring local fire danger this week

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

September 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Shelby County Emergency Management Coordinator Bob Seivert says his agency will begin monitoring the local fire danger potential, beginning this week. Twice weekly updates will be provided by the EMA staff in Shelby County, with data supplied by the National Weather Service forecast products, the Storm Prediction Center (SPC), and close monitoring of local conditions. The updates will be provided to help residents in Shelby County to determine if it is safe to conduct outdoor burning.

Seivert says Shelby County sees an increase in fire activity every year in the spring and fall when residents start igniting burn piles, or prescribed fires on CRP land to meet land management objectives. Often time’s fires are ignited on days when weather conditions are less than favorable. When the burns are started they can cause escape fires which put lives, environment, and property in danger.

The Shelby County Emergency Services Association, in coordination with local Fire Chiefs are asking you to call the Shelby County Emergency Management Office at 712-755-2124 to report your controlled burning projects. When you call in you will simply be asked the size of your project, a number you can be reached at, start and stop times of the planned burn. The Shelby County Emergency Management Office will also ask that you provide the local fire chief with notification.

An electronic copy of the Fire Danger Rating Board can be found at www.shelbycountyema.com. The purpose of this system is to visually let the public know when the conditions are safest to carry out your burning projects. This system is not a permitting process, or authorization to burn, it just lets you know if conditions are favorable.

Shelby Counties cooperative system will allow the authorities to dispatch Emergency Resources immediately on report of smoke when the fire danger is determined to be HIGH or EXTREME. On HIGH days fire resources will be dispatched and make a decision on whether it is safe to continue the burning. If the Fire Chief or his designee think conditions are not safe they may extinguish the fire.

On EXTREME days all fires will be extinguished unless a permit or waiver has been signed by the Chief of the local fire department.

Branstad proclamation allows heavier loads

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa farmers will be able to carry heavier loads of corn, soybeans and other items for the next two months. Gov. Terry Branstad signed a proclamation Friday allowing the heavier loads, a move Iowa governors usually take in the fall.

The proclamation allows people to haul loads of soybeans, corn, hay, straw, silage and stover up to 90,000 pounds of gross weight without a permit for 60 days. The temporary allowance doesn’t apply to interstate highways. The move is intended to help farmers efficiently move crops after harvest.

Farm Bill expires at midnight

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 30th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

At midnight tonight the temporary extension of the Farm Bill expires. Iowa Farm Bureau president Craig Hill is among the many residents of farm country who’re finding it difficult to read the signals of congress. “I can’t tell you whether they will try another extension — we can’t support another extension — or whether they’ll have a stop-gap measure and continue to kick the can down the road,” Hill says. The most immediate impact of the Farm Bill’s demise will come with the October shut down of programs that promote the sale of U.S. farm commodities overseas.

In addition, Hill says the U.S. will be accused of trade violations when it comes to the cotton market and country-of-origin labeling. “Both of those could be resolved with the new reform bill,” Hill says. “Avoid having that, we kind of disrupt our ability to be a good partner in trade, as well as many of our export enhancement programs — our Market Access Program and other programs — that will lack funding and so long-term we will adversely impact our ability to trade.” There’s uncertainty for farmers hoping to do conservation projects this fall, like build terraces in fields once the harvesting is done. This comes just as the Iowa Farm Bureau and other groups have begun to urge farmers to take such steps to avoid soil erosion and farm chemical run-off into Iowa waterways.

“Without conservation funding and authorization the CSP program, the CRP program, a number of the things that we use as stewards won’t be available to us and we won’t be able to plan for those tools,” Hill says, “also disrupting our ability to help retain soil and have a safer water supply.” It’s hard to put a dollar value on the overall financial impact of the impasse in congress, but there is one certainty: if congress doesn’t act by January 1st, the price of a gallon of milk is going to more than double. That’s because the price supports for milk will revert to 1949 levels.

“On the farm, that means $39 a hundredweight (of milk) as opposed to $18 a hundredweight today,” Hill says. “That will be unacceptable by consumers and I think politicians will again take notice to that.” If congress fails to fix the problem, milk prices will rise above six dollars a gallon. It was that prospect which helped lead congress to pass an eight-month extension of the Farm Bill last December. By the way, there are about 12 gallons in a hundredweight of milk, which is the measurement dairy farms use when milk is sold.

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa Hog Numbers Reach Record Levels

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 28th, 2013 by Chris Parks

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – The population of hogs and pigs in Iowa has reached the highest number ever.

The United States Department of Agriculture says in its quarterly report released Friday that the Sept. 1 inventory of hogs and pigs in the state shows 21.2 million animals. That’s up from 2 percent reported on the same date a year ago and is the highest inventory on record.

Iowa is by far the nation’s leading hog producer with nearly a third of the nation’s 68.4 million animals. A distant second is North Carolina with about 9.5 million hogs. Minnesota is third with 7.6 million. Followed by Illinois with 4.7 million and Nebraska with 3.1 million.

Governor to Tour AgriDrain During Manufacturing Week


September 28th, 2013 by Chris Parks

Governor Terry Branstad and Lieutenant Governor Kim Reynolds will tour Agri Drain Corporation in Guthrie County as part of Manufacturing Week on Monday, September 30, 2013. Manufacturing Week is an effort to draw greater attention to some of Iowa’s outstanding employers and the excellent opportunities a career in manufacturing can provide.


The Branstad Administration will learn about the company history, tour the facility, and hear from company officials on the benefits and challenges of doing business in Iowa. For over 37 years, Agri Drain has been America’s most complete manufacturer and supplier of products for drainage water management, wetlands, ponds, lakes, erosion control, and land improvement. Agri Drain employs over 50 people and is a member of the Iowa Association of Business and Industry (ABI). ABI is the state’s oldest and largest business association, has over 1,400 member companies in all of Iowa’s 99 counties, and represents employers on key issues impacting the ability to grow and keep jobs in Iowa.



September 28th, 2013 by Chris Parks

DES MOINES – The Iowa Outdoor Expo for kids and families is scheduled for Sept. 28 – 29, at the west end of Waterworks Park, near the Izaak Walton League Lodge, 4343 George Flagg Parkway, in Des Moines.


The Expo is a way to introduce children and families to new and exciting ways to enjoy the outdoors with more than 50 free hands-on activities. Attendees may shoot, fish, canoe and see and touch wildlife while learning about outdoor recreation. 


In addition, author, illustrator and musician Doug Wood will be performing EarthSongs, EarthStories.


The Expo is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Sept. 28, and from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Sept. 29.  Admission and parking are free. A flier about the Iowa Outdoor Expo is available online at www.iowadnr.gov/expo.


Attendees can register to win prize packages valued between $200-$400 generously donated by JAX Outdoor Gear, Sportsman’s Warehouse, Fox 17, Seven Oaks Recreation, Van Wall Powersports, Outdoors with Outdoors Dan, Scheels and Climb Iowa.


The Iowa Outdoor Expo is sponsored by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, the Des Moines chapter of the Izaak Walton League of America, Polk County Conservation Board, Prairie Meadows, Iowa Natural Heritage Foundation, Northern Lights Pizza, Friends of the NRA, Mid-Iowa Bass Masters and the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation.


The Expo is held in conjunction with National Hunting and Fishing Day.

New Tax Credit to Help Beginning Farmers

Ag/Outdoor, News

September 27th, 2013 by Chris Parks

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A new tax credit program in Iowa gives a break to anyone hiring a beginning farmer to help with agricultural contract work.

The Iowa Finance Authority announced Thursday that the Custom Hire Tax Credit Program is accepting applications. The program was created by the Iowa Legislature earlier this year to provide a boost for beginning farmers.

The maximum credit that can be received is $50,000. Eligible farmers must be at least 18, an Iowa resident and have a net worth of no more than about $691,000.

Iowa Finance Authority Executive Director Dave Jamison says in a news release that the program will encourage beginning farmers to stay in the state.

Leash on Life 09-26-2013

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

September 26th, 2013 by Chris Parks

Andrea Farrior and Chris Parks talk about what is new at the Atlantic Animal Shelter at 309 Sunnyside Lane in Atlantic.


Doc Leonard’s Pet Pointers 09-26-2013

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

September 26th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Dr. Keith Leonard