News & Events

A New Network for Women in Agriculture

Published Feb. 20, 2015

To be a woman in agriculture is to face a unique set of challenges. And because I know all too well the trials that women can face as they look to take on leadership roles, I made it a goal as USDA’s Deputy Secretary to start a community for women leaders in agriculture.

AFBF helps feed the hungry

Published Feb. 24, 2015

The joint effort between Farm Bureau and Feeding America, the nation’s largest hunger relief organization, is a national community action program through which farmers and ranchers can help ensure every American enjoys the bounty of food they produce.

Agriculture Giants Boost Cybersecurity to Shield Farm Data

Published Feb. 20, 2015

Companies including Monsanto Co. and Deere & Co. are investing more in cybersecurity as the farming business grows more datacentric, with satellite-steered tractors and algorithm-driven planting services expanding across the U.S. Farm Belt, executives said at an industry event Thursday.

AGRICULTURE HAS A SCIENCE PROBLEM

Published Feb. 25, 2015

The most comprehensive answer may be, as Vilsack said in an interview, "Science, like everything else, evolves."

Agriculture Must Be Central to Climate Deal, Experts Say

Published Feb. 23, 2015

Bigger droughts, more frequent flooding, more devastating storms — these are some of the effects that climate change is already having on our planet. And farmers, many of them small, family growers in developing countries, are on the front lines

Are Farmland Cash Rents Going to Fall or Not?

Published Feb. 26, 2015

Last week's USDA Ag Outlook Forum painted a picture of a corn market that could remain in the $3.50- to $4-per-bushel range for a while. Years, even. That sort of price range doesn't bode particularly well for sustained strength in farmland rents, with farmers feeling the squeeze created by the divergence of falling grain prices and land prices that have yet to fall too much.

As one generation ages, some prepare the next to take over the family farm

Published Feb. 23, 2015

What’s most important when planning for a transition of ownership is having a family meeting, said Don Schreiber, director of the Advanced Consulting Group at Nationwide Financial.

As Rules Get Sorted Out, Drones May Transform Agriculture Industry

Published Feb. 16, 2015

At farm shows across the country, drones have become as ubiquitous as John Deere tractors. The Colorado Farm Show earlier this year included an informational session, telling farmers both the technical and legal challenges ahead.

Background check changes for OSU 4-H volunteers

Published Feb. 26, 2015

Since 2002, new volunteers in OSU Extension youth programs — including roughly 20,000 4-H advisers and Master Gardener volunteers across the state — have been required to have an Ohio Bureau of Criminal Activity fingerprint and background check. The new policy now requires all students, staff and volunteers working in these programs to be fingerprinted every four years.

Breakthrough in varieties make organic apples easier to grow in Ohio

Published Feb. 17, 2015

apples grown in our soils and shaped by our weather happen to taste better. If we could buy organic versions more easily, we could also support our local farm economy.

Does the farm-to-table movement actually help farmers?

Published Feb. 20, 2015

the advantages of this ‘farm-to-table’ dining trend have not been completely realized across the entire food chain. It’s nice to think that by supporting restaurants where local ingredients are on the menu, we’ve helped local farmers. But can we do more?

Farm bill deadlines coming fast

Published Feb. 26, 2015

farmers have only a few weeks left to make decisions about key farm safety-net decisions, said a farm policy expert in the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University.

Farm emergency action plans help first responders, save time

Published Feb. 16, 2015

Too often, when first responders arrive on the scene of a farm-related emergency, they don’t have the proper knowledge, training, personnel or equipment to manage the situation.

Farmer, researchers look at climate change's impact on agriculture

Published Feb. 17, 2015

Fred Abels has seen the effect of climate change on his Holland farm and he's changed his farming practices to adapt.

Farmers Fear Legal Status For Workers Would Lead Them Off The Farm

Published Feb. 27, 2015

According to surveys, about half of all farmworkers in the country lack legitimate documents and live in what's often described as a "shadow world," without legal rights. The farmers who employ those workers, meanwhile, are deeply ambivalent about this situation.

Farming for employment: How agriculture affects American jobs

Published Feb. 27, 2015

According to the data and Secretary Vilsack, “More than one million people go to work every day thanks to exports of American-grown products.”

Financial health of agriculture sector remains strong

Published Feb. 23, 2015

"Record production has meant that stock levels are higher and prices are lower, but producers will benefit from record asset levels and from new farm programs intended to cushion declines in farm revenues," Johansson said.

Global prosperity fuels Ohio farm growth

Published Feb. 24, 2015

It was OSU Extension grain and market expert Matt Roberts who pointed out what perhaps many Ohio farmers already realize - what happens in the world affects Ohio farmers, prices and profits.

Groups urge legislators to avoid farm bill cuts in budget talks

Published Feb. 25, 2015

The letter noted that the bipartisan 2014 Farm Bill was estimated to contribute $23 billion to deficit reduction over 10 years, when including sequestration.

How does ag communicate with consumers?

Published Feb. 18, 2015

Auburn, Ill., farmer Tim Seifert has a question for consumers. “Where did we go wrong?” With so many people bent on bashing modern food production, Seifert wants to understand how agriculture lost consumers’ trust. It’s a valid question.

Landowners in path of pipelines urged to not be bullied

Published Feb. 24, 2015

"Everything is negotiable," and a company's first offer is never its best, said Dale Arnold, director of energy, utility and local government policy for the Ohio Farm Bureau.

Leasing, conditional sales agreements and the future of 179

Published Feb. 16, 2015

Generally, a taxpayer that buys business or income-producing property (not held for sale) with a useful life of more than one year cannot deduct its full cost as an expense for that year. However, the Internal Revenue Code (Code) allows an annual deduction of a portion of the cost of the property

Lessons learned from farm bill debate

Published Feb. 17, 2015

Barry Flinchbaugh, professor emeritus Department of Agricultural Economics at Kansas State University, and U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts shared the stage but not equal billing at the Kansas Commodity Classic Feb. 6 in Manhattan, Kansas.

Maple syrup season off to slow start

Published Feb. 24, 2015

The blistering cold temperatures that have settled over central Ohio are preventing sap from flowing up and out of their maple trees, putting a damper on the early end of the syrup production season.

Megatrends in agriculture

Published Feb. 26, 2015

Production diversity—“We think we’ll see more production diversity in agriculture.”
Consolidation and rationalization in production—It’s a controversial topic, Nicholson says, but the trend is that operations are going to continue to get bigger.

New rules cloud future for large-scale wind farms in Ohio

Published Feb. 16, 2015

About a dozen wind farm projects that have been certified by the state are essentially on hold now and may never get off the ground after Ohio put in a two-year delay on its renewable energy targets last summer.

OFBF Ag Day at the Capital looks at state budget, other 2015 priorities

Published Feb. 26, 2015

“2014 was an interesting year to be a farmer — the farm bill passed, the property tax increased and the price of corn fell, and Toledo had no water for three days. That means 2015 will be a critical year to be a farmer advocate. Now is the time to deliver our farmer advocate message and deliver it loudly,” said Steve Hirsch, OFBF president

Ohio dairy farmers share advice on farm succession

Published Feb. 27, 2015

Stark County dairy farmer Frank Burkett III, of Clardale Farms, has invested in life insurance as a way of being prepared.

Ohio Senate passes water quality bill

Published Feb. 20, 2015

The bill’s main focus is on preventing the winter application of manure and fertilizer to frozen and snow covered ground in the Western Lake Erie Basin, although the bill also restricts dredging and requires new testing at water treatment plants.

Poor growing season sprouts business

Published Feb. 20, 2015

There is a popular proverb that goes “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” Several years ago, a couple said they took this phrase to heart, creating a business out of a solution they used to compensate for an impossible outdoor growing season.

Rent walkouts point to strains in U.S. farm economy

Published Feb. 23, 2015

Some grain farmers already see the burden as too big. They are taking an extreme step, one not widely seen since the 1980s: breaching lease contracts, reducing how much land they will sow this spring and risking years-long legal battles with landlords.

Rules of the road for farm transportation

Published Feb. 18, 2015

Although the laws haven’t changed that much, Curtis says a reminder every now and then can keep farmers safe and free of fines. Such fines can be divvied out due to being overweight, so Curtis discussed the three weight limits in Ohio important to farmers.

State ag directors gather to talk farm issues

Published Feb. 18, 2015

NASDA members also passed policy amendments on national commodity check off programs and agriculture mediation programs, additionally they passed action items on rail transportation, invasive species, trade with Cuba, national labeling of food derived from genetic engineering, Country of Origin Labeling (COOL), and agriculture in the classroom.

The Future Of Agriculture? Smart Farming

Published Feb. 20, 2015

The agricultural sector is going to face enormous challenges in order to feed the 9.6 billion people that the FAO predicts are going to inhabit the planet by 2050. One way to address these issues and increase the quality and quantity of agricultural production is using sensing technology to make farms more “intelligent”

Toxic-algae bill likely to get Ohio Senate vote today

Published Feb. 18, 2015

The Senate bill prohibits the spreading of manure on northwestern Ohio fields that are frozen or saturated with water, or if the weather forecast says the chance of 1 inch of rain over the next 12 hours is greater than 50 percent. Some argue that the forecast protection covers only manure, not fertilizer as was originally proposed.

U.S. exports of farm equipment down by 29% in 2014

Published Feb. 26, 2015

While a decline of nearly one-third is steep, the drop in U.S. farm equipment exports was not completely unexpected, AEM said. In 2014, a record harvest led to lower commodity prices and falling farm incomes, leading to a deterioration in farm economics worldwide.

US, EU agriculture leaders try to ease trade concerns

Published Feb. 20, 2015

the "moment is ripe to create a trade super highway between the EU and the U.S." but there's no denying there's several roadblocks and detours that lie ahead.