May is World Trade month, which celebrates the contributions of trade and recognizes the importance of trade to the economy. Nowhere is that more evident than in agriculture. U.S. Grains Council Vice President Cary Sifferath joins us on this episode to discuss the Grains Council's role and the importance of keeping channels open. 


Members of the Farm Credit Administration were in Minnesota this week to connect with the customers they serve and to some of the ways Farm Credit associations are investing. As Lynn Ketelsen reports, even though the primary focus is to provide funding for farmers, ranchers and cooperatives, other important rural projects are also eligible. 

Farm News

May 19, 2022
Governor Tim Walz, Agriculture Commissioner Thom Peterson and other members of the administration toured parts of Minnesota damaged by storms last week. Homes, farm buildings and grain bins were damaged, trees toppled and power knocked out following severe storms across Minnesota on May 12. Wind gusts of 94 mph were reported in Madison and Verndale. In addition to the strong winds, heavy rain fell in several areas of the state. Damage from the storm was extensive and included one weather-related fatality. 

Governor Walz issued an Executive Order authorizing temporary regulatory relief for motor carriers and drivers supporting the transportation of livestock and livestock feed following widespread storm damage across the state. Heavy rain and wind gusts caused significant damage to roads and bridges, causing farmers and drivers transporting livestock and feed to take longer, more circuitous routes to their destinations.

Despite the strong storms late last week and scattered rain on Tuesday, Minnesota farmers made rapid planting progress. According to the USDA, 35% of the state's corn crop is planted, up from 9% last week, but still below the 5-year average of 72% About 2% of the corn crop has already emerged.

Soybean planting is up from 2% last week to 11%, still far behind the 5-year average of 47%. Sugarbeets are at 8% planted, which is the same as last week and short of the 5-year average of 83%. 

The Minnesota legislative session is scheduled to adjourn on May 23, but lawmakers are still haggling over a number of bills, including ag funding and a drought relief bill. Amber Glaser, Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation public policy director says there are also several tax provisions that are of interest to farmers. Listen

Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds this week signed a law requiring most Iowa gas stations to offer gasoline with higher blends of ethanol. The law mandates most stations offer E15, a 15% ethanol blend by 2026. Plato, Minnesota farmer and National Corn Growers Association board member Brian Thalmann says the Minnesota Corn Growers have made substantial investments to expand E15 availability in the state. Minnesota currently has over 420 fueling stations that offer E15 blends. Listen

The National Milk Producers Federation (NMPF) and the U.S. Dairy Export Council (USDEC) has called on the U.S. government to levy retaliatory tariffs on Canada after Ottawa made clear that it refuses to meet its signed treaty obligations under the U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) concerning dairy market access.

In January, a USMCA dispute resolution panel initiated by the U.S. found that Canada’s dairy tariff-rate quotas (TRQs) system violates the terms of USMCA. Canada issued a new TRQ proposal in March which included only inconsequential changes. Today’s announcement shows no indication that Canada intends to comply with its USMCA commitments on dairy TRQs.
The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has announced that commodity and specialty crop producers impacted by natural disaster events in 2020 and 2021 will soon begin receiving emergency relief payments totaling approximately $6 billion through the Farm Service Agency’s (FSA) new Emergency Relief Program (ERP) to offset crop yield and value losses.

USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack says checks could be sent out as soon as this month. Listen

FSA Administrator Zach Ducheneaux will be in Minnesota today to meet with farmers and FSA staff. He explains what kinds of disaster losses will be covered in the ERP program. Listen

Dozens of members of the Farm Credit Administration (FCA) toured Minnesota, Iowa and parts of Nebraska this week. The FCA regulates the nation's 67 Farm Credit associations, including Compeer Financial, which helped organize the tour. Many of the participants work in the Washington D.C. office, and some had never been to a farm. The visit included stops at several farms, an ethanol plant, FarmAmerica near Waseca and the Lakeview Methodist Health Care Center, which recently completed a $24 million expansion, which received financing from Compeer. 

FCA Chairman and CEO Glen Smith says investing in rural health care facilities is an important part of what Farm Credit associations are able to do. Listen

The Minnesota Agricultural Education Leadership Council (MAELC) recently awarded $40,000 in scholarships for the 2022-23 school year to students studying Agricultural Education in Minnesota at Southwest Minnesota State University, the University of Minnesota-Crookston, and the University of Minnesota-Twin Cities through both Diversity and Undergraduate scholarship programs.

A severe shortage of high school agriculture teachers exists in Minnesota and nationally. As a result, there is a tremendous need for more students to become licensed to teach agricultural education. The purpose of the Diversity scholarship program is to provide financial support for students from underrepresented groups in the agriculture teacher field

Ten finalists have been named for the Princess Kay of the Milky Way for 2022 Princess Kay candidates are judged on their general knowledge of the dairy industry, communication skills and enthusiasm for promoting dairy. Midwest Dairy sponsors the Princess Kay of the Milky Way program, which is funded by dairy farmers through their promotion checkoff.
The finalists include:
-Alex Christen, Sauk Centre
-Aly Dieball, Green Isle
-Hailey Frericks, Albany
-Kallie Frericks, Albany
-Ashley Holst, Kellogg 
-Kiley Lickfelt, Hutchinson
-Briana Maus, Freeport
-Amber Post, Lake Wilson
-Rachel Rynda, Montgomery
-Allison Wright, Hutchinson

The Minnesota Soybean Research & Promotion Council (MSRPC) is stepping up and walking the walk with a new campaign this summer. MSRPC CEO Tom Slunecka says Minnesota's 44 county board are implementing the Stepping Up program to donate 50 pairs of soy-based Skechers shoes to health care facilities and frontline workers. Slunecka says the effort recognizes the contributions of frontline workers while promoting the versatility of soy. Listen

Please note, there will not be a Linder Farm Network Field Talk newsletter the week of May 23. It will return the following week. 

Upcoming Events

June 8-10:    World Pork Expo, Des Moines, Iowa
July 26-28:   North Star Ag Expo, Owatonna
Aug. 2-4:       Farmfest, Redwood Falls

Farm Fun Fact

Princess Kay of the Milky Way will be crowned for the 69th year, prior to the opening of the 2022 Minnesota State Fair. According to the State Fair, it would take a the average dairy cow 8-9 years to produce the nearly 26,000 gallons of milk that are served each year at the All You Can Drink Milk booth. 


LFN on F A C E B O O K LFN on F A C E B O O K
LFN on T W I T T E R LFN on T W I T T E R
LFN on YouTube LFN on YouTube