Following a lively debate at a jam packed forum builidng at Farmfest, Gov. Tim Walz and his GOP challenger Dr. Scott Jensen joined the Linder Farm Network Midday Farm Review on August 3. Soctt Lambert of the Minnesota Automobile Dealers Association also joined the show. 


Minnesota's crops continue to develop rapidly as the calendar turns to August. While many areas of the state remain in need of rain, progress remains steady. David Nicolai with the University of Minnesota joined Lynn Ketelsen to give an update of crop progress. 

Farm News

August 3, 2022
A standing room only crowd witnessed a lively debate between Gov. Tim Walz and GOP challenger Dr. Scott Jensen as part of a candidates forum at Farmfest. It was the first time the two candidates had appeared on stage together. Candidates answered a range of ag-related questions from moderator Blois Olson and from a panel of Minnesota ag leaders. 

The candidates drew often boisterous responses from their supporters during the morning forum. Both candidates highlighted their rural roots, but often sparred over issues like the economy, electric car standards, the state's COVID-19 response and education. The candidates debated for nearly 90 minutes in front of a full house.

Each candidate was given an opportunity to provide closing comments. Listen to Gov. Walz closing comments here. 

Listen to Dr. Jensen's closing comments here. 

Candidate forums for several Minnesota congressional races highlighted Day One activities at Farmfest. The morning began with an agriculture and rural issues forum with candidates in the First Congressional District. Brad Finstad, the GOP endorsed candidate was joined by fellow Republican Jeremy Munson. DFL endorsed candidate Jeff Ettinger was unable to attend due to a positive COVID test. James Rainwater, a DFL candidate and Richard Reisdorf the Legal Marijuana Now candidate joined the debate which addressed a range of rural issues including the farm bill, immigration and taxes.

A special election is taking place in the First District to fill the remainder of the late Con. Jim Hagedorn's term. The seat is up for election again in the regular election in November. 

Candidates for Congress in Minnesota's Second, Sixth, Seventh and Eighth Congressional Districts squared off in a candidates forum. Issues addressed by the candidates and incumbents included inflation, biofuels and energy policy. 
The 2023 Farm Bill was a popular topic of discussion at Farmfest.  Ag groups have established priority issues they'd like to see addressed when a new bill is crafted. While many organizations have their own priorities, many groups identify protecting crop insurance as a key issue. Increasing reference prices in the Farm Bill is another key issue as prices have changed substantially since the 2018 Farm Bill was written. Leaders from numerous national ag organizations participated in a panel discussion identifying the items they deemed most important to include in the 2023 Farm Bill.

Minnesota Farm Bureau Federation (MFBF) Public Policy Director Amber Glaser says farm organizations have their priorities in place, but will be watching the elections closely. The makeup and leadership of the agriculture committees in Congress will likely change, depending upon the outcome of the November elections. Glaser says the MFBF is prepared to work with whomever is on the committees.  Listen

Combines have begun rolling in fields along the southern edge of Minnesota's wheat territory. Minnesota Association of Wheat Growers Executive Director Charlie Vogel says he's seen a few fields being harvested, but the bulk of the wheat crop in western and northern Minnesota won't likely be harvested until closer to Labor Day. Vogel says despite a late start, most of the wheat crop is looking good. Listen 

Minnesota's corn crop is rated 63% good to excellent in the latest USDA crop progress report. USDA estimates 75% of the crop is silking with 13% in the dough stage. Soybeans are rated 66% good to excellent with 81% blooming and 36% setting pods. Minnesota's spring wheat crop is estimated at 82% good to excellent.

Minnesota Corn Growers leaders are encouraging farmers to provide feedback to the Environmental Protection Agency about proposed changes to the registration for atrazine. EPA is proposing new restrictions that would potentially limit farmer's access to the popular herbicide. The National Corn Growers has initiated a call to action for farmers to leave comments with the EPA on the importance of the herbicide. Comments can be left here. The comment period ends September 6. 

Upcoming Events

Aug. 4:                  Farmfest, Redwood Falls
Aug. 25-Sept. 5   Minnesota State Fair

Farm Fun Fact

The Minnesota State Fair kicks off later this month and is the nation's second largest state fair in terms of attendance. New York has the distinction of being the oldest state fair, holding the first event in 1841. Minnesota held the first state fair in 1859, just a year after earning statehood. 


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