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 snowfall helps, but drought deficit still looms

Ag/Outdoor, News, Weather

March 5th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

More snow has fallen on Iowa in the region’s third large winter storm in three weeks, prompting farmers and others to wonder what impact the snowpack will have on the long-running drought. Climatologist Al Dutcher says there are signs the weather pattern is starting to return to normal, but he says just getting average snowfall or rainfall won’t put a dent in the drought deficits. “To double that precipitation is only going to knock off four or five inches of these accumulated deficits,” Dutcher says. “The hydrological drought is here for a while. It would take an average of at least an inch of moisture every single week through this entire growing season for us to substantially impact the drought.”

He says more of these late winter snowstorms could help the region regain some of its lost moisture. Dutcher, a climatologist with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, says the region needs more precipitation or spring planting will be a trial and the growing season ahead could be a disaster. “If the moisture doesn’t materialize these next two months, then it’s going to be exceptionally difficult if not virtually impossible for us to hold off the drought from getting much more intense as we get through this season compared to last season,” Dutcher says. “We won’t have any significant moisture in the profile. Most of it will to be right at the surface and it will not carry the crop.”

Ideally, he says the region needs to see a return to a normal rain pattern with temperatures low enough to keep vegetation from robbing a needed build-up of subsoil moisture. Parts of northeast Iowa are expecting up to ten inches of snow in this latest winter blast, another big help in overcoming the drought that began last year, the worst in more than a half century.

(Radio Iowa)

G&R Feed and Grain bankrupty case update: Sat., March 2nd 2013

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 2nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Deborah L. Petersen, Trustee in the Bankruptcy case for G & R Feed and Grain Co., Inc., in
Portsmouth, reports the Meeting of Creditors was held last month (February), and the bankruptcy case is progressing. The deadline for filing claims in the Bankruptcy is May 20th, 2013. If you have a claim for a deferred price contract, or other amount due you, you should take action to timely file a claim with the Bankruptcy Court. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is processing the payments for producers who held warehouse receipts for stored grain. It is anticipated that checks will be mailed by April 1st, 2013.

The Iowa Department of Agriculture is processing claims for producers who sold grain to G & R for cash or who sold grain on an unsigned contract and were not paid. The first batch of claims has been processed. Confirmations have been sent to 19 claimants. Once the paperwork has been
returned by the claimants and processed, checks will be issued within 2 – 3 weeks thereafter.

The Trustee has been unable to obtain a bid for the contracts for future delivery of grain. According to the Bankruptcy Code, if the contracts are not accepted or rejected by March 2, 2013, they are deemed rejected. The Trustee is taking no action to extend this date, so in her opinion, the contracts are rejected effective March 5, 2013.

The Trustee is accepting bids for the entire facility and all equipment as a package deal. If an
acceptable bid is obtained, the Court’s approval will be sought. If not, then the Trustee will look at
scheduling an auction. Letters have been sent out to collect all accounts due G & R. The Trustee
is still seeking recovery of the proceeds for the grain delivered in December.

G & R Feed and Grain filed for Chapter 7 bankruptcy on January 1st, 2013, leaving some 60 families or businesses, most of whom are located in Shelby County, to taked stock of their losses. Court records show the company’s debts range from$1-million and $10-million, while its assets were up to $50,000.

Cass Supervisors discuss Division of Land process

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

County officials, surveyors and other members of the public met Thursday during the Cass County Board of Supervisor’s meeting, to discuss the County’s Division of Land Process which was implemented after the passage of a resolution in January of 2012. According to the Minutes of the meeting prepared by Auditor Dale Sunderman, surveyors and land owners commented that the process was more complicated than the previous process and sometimes increased the cost of surveying and the time needed to complete the process.

The main item of concern was the requirement to survey the remainder of a rural tract (most often 40 acres) when the tract is divided into more than two parcels. County Engineer Charles Marker said he believed Iowa law (Code and Administrative Code) required the survey of the remainder of the tract when that tract was subdivided into more than two parcels. Surveyors disagreed. At the end of discussion: Consensus was that the review part of the process (to check for accuracy, etc) was a positive step and the process should be left in place; county officials will work to complete the process as quickly as they can; and the issue of whether or not the survey of the remainder parcel is required will be researched.

The matter was taken under advisement.

Iowa officials stop testing milk for aflatoxin

Ag/Outdoor

March 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa agriculture officials are no longer requiring that milk received in the state be tested for a poison-producing fungus. The Iowa Department of Agriculture and Land Stewardship says milk will not be screened or tested for aflatoxin beginning today (Friday).

Aflatoxins are a group of chemicals produced by certain mold fungi. They occur more frequently in hot, dry summer conditions. The milk began being tested at the end of August. Since then, four loads of milk tested positive for aflatoxin. The last load tested positive in November.

The agency has been monitoring the prevalence of aflatoxin through a corn sampling program. It also blends aflatoxin with some corn for animal feed.

Study: Meat consumption is dropping as prices rise

Ag/Outdoor

March 1st, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A new federal food forecast contains foul news for Iowa cattle producers, but encouragement for those who raise pork and poultry. The U-S-D-A predicts Americans will eat much less meat in 2013 due to skyrocketing costs. Shale Shagam, an agency livestock analyst, says the average person will eat just over 200 pounds of red meat and poultry in the year ahead.  “We look at beef to be the big decline, down about 1.3 pounds to about 56.1 pounds per capita,” Shagam says. “Pork will be up about 0.3 of a pound to about 46.1 pounds, while broilers will be up about a half a pound to about 80.9 pounds per capita during 2013.” That’s the lowest expected meat consumption rate since 1991.

The extended drought in Iowa and across much of the country last year is now translating to much higher prices in grocery store meat cases. Shagam says, “We can expect to see records in terms of our retail prices for choice beef, again, a record for our broiler price and probably about a similar price on the pork side.” The federal report predicts a boost in beef imports this year, while about 11-percent less U-S beef will be exported.

“We expect imports to increase about 16% to 2.6 billion pounds,” Shagam says. “A lot of that is tied to the strong demand for processing grade beef in the United States.” Iowa is the nation’s number-one pork producer. The state’s top commodity is corn, followed by pork, soybeans and cattle.

(Radio Iowa)

Leash on Life 02-28-2013

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

February 28th, 2013 by Chris Parks

Info from the Atlantic Animal Shelter.

Play

Doc Leonard’s Pet Pointers 02-28-2013

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

February 28th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Dr. Keith Leonard

Play

Report says most wind energy goes to distant cities

Ag/Outdoor, News

February 27th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A report from the Center for Rural Affairs finds those giant wind turbines that dot the farmland skyline are helping power distant cities, not rural homes. Johnathan Hladik, the center’s energy policy advocate, says major power lines are -not- connected to the areas where the wind power is generated. Hladik says, “We’re finding that all of the important, big transmission lines that can move a lot of capacity, the kind of capacity we need, are far away from the rural areas that are home to all of our wind turbines.”

Iowa ranks third in the nation for wind energy production, behind Texas and California. Under the old model of generation, power plants were located close to the population areas they serve. Now, utilities are finding it difficult to locate new plants in heavily-populated areas. Hladik says the study found only a few miles of the modern, major power lines are located close to the wind turbines. “Only 6% of the lines 400 kilovolts and above are located in the top ten states for wind energy potential and most of those states are in the upper Midwest and the Great Plains areas,” Hladik says. “But even more importantly, less than 1% of the lines over 600 kilovolts are located in these areas. That’s only nine miles.”

Hladik says making a more efficient use of infrastructure now in place is a critical first step, and to make major improvements, it will take some creative partnerships. “It’s not only the job of individual utilities and public utility commissions in each state to recognize the problem and to recognize what we need to do to tap our wind resources, but the onus also falls on states working together, on regional collaboratives,” he says. The utilities need to come up with plans to move more power over a more efficient energy grid, he says, to insure a clean energy future and more jobs. The Center for Rural Affairs is based in Lyons, Nebraska. Learn more about the report at: www.cfra.org

(Radio Iowa)

Cass County Extension Report 02-27-2013

Ag/Outdoor, Podcasts

February 27th, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Extension Program Coordinator Kate Olson

Play

DNR to hold Listening Session on fall hunting and trapping regulations

Ag/Outdoor, Sports

February 27th, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Natural Resources says it will host public meetings over the Iowa Communications Network on March 7th from 6- to 9- p.m., to listen to the public’s thoughts on the hunting and trapping regulations for this fall. The meetings are part of the new process instituted for making rules in state government. Dr. Dale Garner, chief of the wildlife bureau, says “Any rule changes must be discussed with Iowa’s citizens who might be impacted by the changes before the rule changes are proposed. The new process helps ensure that rule changes serve the public’s wishes and do not impact Iowa’s economy.”

At each meeting DNR staff will facilitate a discussion about what went well last fall, what didn’t, and what changes hunters and trappers would like to see for this fall. The discussions along with the data that the wildlife bureau collects on harvest and population numbers will be used to develop recommendations for any rule changes this fall. Any changes must be approved by the Natural Resource Commission and then go back to the public for further comment before taking effect next fall.

Meetings will be held in several communities, including: Council Bluffs, Creston, and Sac City. Complete ICN locations are available online at www.iowadnr.gov/hunting.