News & Events

Ohio lawmakers, farmers call for ‘sound science’ in water quality rules

Published Jan. 30, 2015

Members of the House Agriculture and Rural Development Committee held their first public hearing of the year Jan. 29, where they fielded public comment about new legislation to help control nutrient runoff from farmers’ fields.

Cash Rent Tug-of-War

Published Jan. 30, 2015

Brace yourself! The tug-of-war over 2015 cash rent rates is a battle of steely nerves. At this point, there isn’t much slack in the rope between high rents and low crop prices

Agriculture's discussion of rail service issues continues

Published Jan. 30, 2015

With the impacts of rail service hiccups still evident, the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation on Wednesday heard from ag industry leaders in a hearing to examine both the past performance of rail and areas of needed improvement

U.S., Mexico Increasingly Competing for Farm Labor

Published Jan. 30, 2015

The majority of hired farmworkers in the U.S., estimated at around 1 million, are Mexican, according to the U.S. Department of Labor. In California, Mexican migrants account for 90% of hired workers, according to independent estimates. But the pool of Mexican agricultural workers is steadily declining

Ohio septic system regulations overhauled

Published Jan. 29, 2015

The Ohio Department of Health reports that nearly 31 percent of all septic systems in Ohio are failing. A failing system could indicate a number of problems, but it doesn’t necessarily mean the homeowner will have to replace the entire system

Exotic animals seized from area; judge later orders them returned

Published Jan. 29, 2015

A Wood County Common Pleas Court judge issued a handwritten order on Wednesday, directing the Ohio Department of Agriculture to return the exotic animals that agents had tranquilized and seized hours earlier from the farm off Fremont Pike

EPA Angers Farmers Again

Published Jan. 29, 2015

On the same day when leaders of the Iowa Renewable Fuels Association were complaining about the EPA’s two-year delay in issuing ethanol and biodiesel blending levels under the Renewable Fuel Standard, the EPA announced a decision that critics say will make it easier for biodiesel plants in Argentina to export to the U.S.

Farm Operating Loans on the Rise -- Fed

Published Jan. 29, 2015

A couple of years ago, farm lending for big-ticket purchases -- fueled by high grain prices and farm incomes -- was strong while operating loans were scraping the floor. Corn and soybean farmers were making a lot of money and turning around and reinvesting it in their businesses through capital purchases.
Now, the opposite is true.

Food Dialogues: Consumers demand appropriate farm animal care

Published Jan. 29, 2015

Farm animal care doesn't just impact farmers – it's an issue that has expanded to concern consumers, food suppliers and animal welfare advocates, panelists participating in Wednesday's Food Dialogues presentation agreed.

Payments to farmers may exceed farm bill’s expectations

Published Jan. 29, 2015

The Congressional Budget Office weighed in this week with a revised baseline that shows annual payments to farmers could average $4.8 billion over the next decade — a nearly 50 percent increase over what CBO had predicted less than a year ago after passage of the 2014 farm bill

Bumper crop of urban farming can be found in Ohio

Published Jan. 28, 2015

Urban agriculture can include anything from community vegetable gardens run by non-profit groups, to for-profit companies producing anything from gourmet salad greens to mushrooms, he said.

Conservancy sponsors land preservation program

Published Jan. 28, 2015

Black Swamp Conservancy will serve as an organization for Ohio’s Local Agricultural Easement Purchase Program. As a non-profit land trust, the conservancy is dedicated to protecting and conserving natural and agricultural lands in northwest Ohio.

What Is a CSA and Why You Should Join One

Published Jan. 28, 2015

It’s a win-win for consumers and growers because consumers get delicious, fresh and mostly, if not all, organic produce throughout the growing season, and growers have the financial support from their customers at the beginning of the season.

Ohio cattlemen honor Buchy, Sutherlys with top awards

Published Jan. 28, 2015

More than 275 attended the Ohio Cattlemen’s Association annual meeting and banquet Jan. 24 at the Nationwide Conference Center in Lewis Center, on the outskirts of Columbus.

Ohio farmer brings a bit of the west to the Midwest

Published Jan. 28, 2015

Owl Creek Farm began in 2011, as Ruter took nearly 430 acres and began to populate them with bison from Colorado and Indiana. Fast forward to 2015, and Ruter has 64 head and plans to have about 80 by September.

Ag Census Great Tool For Research, Policy Development

Published Jan. 28, 2015

The census is really useful in terms of defining what the industry works like, what the various sectors of the industry look like, and thereby helping us to understand the environment that we’re making policy in and trying to operate in.

Ethanol Will Face RFS Threat

Published Jan. 28, 2015

Corn ethanol had dodged the latest bullet in Congress, but attempts to weaken or repeal the Renewable Fuel Standard are likely to be attached to must-pass legislation in Congress all year.

Hite to chair agriculture panel again

Published Jan. 28, 2015

Hite will be serving his third term as Agriculture Committee chairman, and will be serving as Finance Subcommittee on Education chairman for the first time.

TPA again getting support from agriculture

Published Jan. 27, 2015

TPA defines U.S. negotiating objectives and priorities for trade agreements and establishes consultation and notification requirements for the president to follow throughout the negotiation process. Once negotiators finalize a deal, Congress gets an up or down vote — without amendments — on it. Congress has granted TPA to every president since 1974,

You voted for eggs to sell at $3.16 a dozen

Published Jan. 27, 2015

The reason is simple. It is costing egg producers $40 per chicken to comply with the new cage rule. It comes to $2 million for a small operation involving 50,000 chickens. A number of out-of-state producers in places such as Iowa and Ohio that have real winters in order to comply have also had to add heating. More space means chickens aren’t staying warm simply from body heat

Ohio House panel to hold water quality hearing

Published Jan. 27, 2015

An Ohio House committee has scheduled a hearing Thursday to discuss water quality and harmful algal blooms in Lake Erie. The hearing by the House Agriculture and Rural Development Committee is being held early Thursday afternoon at a farm in Van Wert in western Ohio

Ohio maple producers learn of new grading system

Published Jan. 27, 2015

The grading system is a proposal of the International Maple Syrup Institute and seeks a unified grading system that will help unite everyone from producers to consumers. It includes a color class that is also based on flavor, and specific criteria related to quality, labels and production.

Schedule set for on-farm food safety training programs for fruits and vegetables

Published Jan. 26, 2015

Classes typically run about three hours, Hoover said. Participants will receive a three-ring binder with standard operating procedure templates and record-keeping templates, presentation handouts and a certificate of participation.

California’s Scrambled Eggs

Published Jan. 26, 2015

Egg prices are soaring in California, where the USDA says the average price for a dozen jumbo eggs is $3.16, up from $1.18 a dozen a year ago, and in some parts of the state it’s more than $5. The Iowa State University Egg Industry Center says retail egg prices in California are 66% higher than in other parts of the West.

Drone to be used for Ohio college’s agriculture program

Published Jan. 26, 2015

The drone will fly out of the Springfield Municipal Airport and must remain at or below 400 feet above ground level. It will collect sensor data during planting and harvest seasons. That data will be processed and analyzed by students in the school’s precision agriculture program and then shared with the farmers.

New Farm Maps Offer In-Depth Picture of Global Agriculture

Published Jan. 26, 2015

Two new maps released Friday (Jan. 16) considerably improve estimates of the amount of land farmed in the world — one map reveals the world's agricultural lands to a resolution of 1 kilometer,

Agriculture Sector Welcomes Low Diesel Prices

Published Jan. 26, 2015

Average diesel prices for 2015 are forecast to be about $1 lower than last year.

Tax filing on the farm: Tips for 2015

Published Jan. 23, 2015

The first area that Miller suggested filers pay particular attention to this year is equipment repairs, and whether or not those repairs can be capitalized.

Captive Deer Hunting Operations Under Scrutiny In Rural America

Published Jan. 23, 2015

Deer farmers and preserve managers argue that their operations provide a boon to rural economies that are strapped for ways to make a living. Ohio, for instance, is home to between 500 and 550 facilities that breed deer or host private hunts,

SOTU & agriculture

Published Jan. 23, 2015

Like most State of the-Union addresses, Tuesday’s message from President Barack Obama to Congress had only a few comments that seem to affect farmers and ranchers directly. To Bob Stallman, the Texas farmer and cattleman who is president of the American Farm Bureau Federation, some of the President’s remarks were encouraging and others were worrisome

The evolution of digital agriculture and considerations today

Published Jan. 23, 2015

Big data continues to be a hot discussion topic within the agricultural community. New technology and services are continuing to come online to help farmers. In the past two years, the advancement of wireless technology and telematics solutions have simplified the transmission of data between agricultural machinery

American agriculture remains a driving force behind America's success

Published Jan. 21, 2015

According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) Economic Research Service, the agricultural industry along with other related-industries contributed $800 billion – or nearly a five percent share – to the U.S. gross domestic product (GDP) in 2012.

Location, quality are key drivers of farmland prices as values stabilize

Published Jan. 21, 2015

"While lower grade land has seen drops in value near 15% from recent highs, top quality crop and grazing land still bring solid prices as owner operators and investors seek to expand their operations with the most productive land," said Randy Dickhut, AFM, Vice President of Real Estate Operations of Farmers National Company.

Ohio AgriBusiness Association Industry Conference

Published Jan. 20, 2015

The 2015 Ohio AgriBusiness Association Industry Conference will feature topics related to the trends, technology and tradition in agriculture Feb. 4-5, as well as a keynote address from Chris Jahn, president of The Fertilizer Institute (TFI), during OABA’s Industry Networking Dinner and Annual Meeting on Feb. 4.

Ohio dairy farms prepared after extreme cold of last winter

Published Jan. 20, 2015

A glance at farms across the state saw all manners of livestock operations affected, though few as much as Ohio’s dairy farmers.

Crop Quest reviews major trends in agriculture

Published Jan. 20, 2015

Sometimes looking at the big picture doesn't seem to be very relevant as we prepare for this year's upcoming crop. But, it does help us see where we are going, or where we should be focusing our attention.

2 Simple Maps That Reveal How American Agriculture Actually Works

Published Jan. 20, 2015

Driving through the farmlands of Iowa looking for fresh food to eat is a lot like sailing through the ocean looking for fresh water to drink. In the ocean, you're surrounded by water that you can't drink; in Iowa, you're surrounded by food you can't eat.

Farm land prices remain high in Marion County

Published Jan. 19, 2015

"What's happening is (farmers) have their children and grandchildren starting to farm with some of these farm groups," Boblenz said. "It used to be one or two people invested in these farm operations. Now, you have several sons and grandkids," and they have to increase their farm land to provide for the livelihoods of each.

Plan targets farmers to reduce Lake Erie algae

Published Jan. 19, 2015

The agriculture department will rank the applications based on what farms are most likely to have the biggest impact on reducing runoff. The department has been working with university scientists and soil experts to determine what areas they should target.

Sowing the Internet of Things into agriculture

Published Jan. 19, 2015

Merge that data with satellite data already being collected by the government, and the department, Valivullah said, will be able to make unprecedented contributions to precision agriculture. "By applying precision agriculture and big data we can increase productivity by another 10 percent to 30 percent and make farmers more profitable," he said.

The Future of Agriculture May Be Moving Indoors

Published Jan. 19, 2015

General Electric (NYSE: GE ) played a central role in the first plant, producing LEDs that could be used to grow crops while using less power than fluorescent lights. And with the plant's success this probably won't be the last we hear of LED farming.

Will Des Moines water lawsuit change farming rules?

Published Jan. 19, 2015

A Des Moines utility's plan to sue three northwest counties for polluting central Iowa's drinking water supply may have broad ramifications for state and U.S. farmers, who environmentalists complain have been too slow to embrace meaningful conservation practices

New research on millennials in agriculture

Published Jan. 19, 2015

We talked to the next generation of farmers, students, ag educators and millennials who play supporting roles in agriculture.

Ohio’s agriculture-linked deposit program seeks applicants

Published Jan. 19, 2015

The program allows agribusinesses to apply for an interest-rate reduction on new or existing loans or lines of credit up to $150,000.