Case IH unveiled their new AFS Connect™ Magnum™ series tractors, at this week’s National Farm Machinery Show in Louisville. Jay Barth, Case IH Marketing Manager said the proven Magnum has evolved. “We’re unlocking a level of connectivity and remote viewing never seen before in a Magnum tractor. The Magnum you depend on and trust today is still there, but it has added capabilities that make your day easier. This is true integration of tractor and technology.”
Downtown Chelsea could become home to a year-round indoor farmers market and community café with the help of a new crowdfunding campaign. If the campaign, being offered through Michigan-based crowdfunding platform Patronicity, achieves its goal of $50,000 by April 7, the project will win a matching grant through MEDC’s Public Spaces Community Places program. For project details and to donate, please visit: patronicity.com/agricole.
U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation Bill Northey announced that the USDA is hosting a listening session for initial input on the 2018 Farm Bill. The listening session is open to the public. Participants must register at farmers.gov/farmbill by Feb. 22, 2019, to attend the listening session and are encouraged to provide written comments prior to the listening session.
Members of the Michigan House Agriculture Committee received the Accurate Ag Book “Right This Very Minute: A Table-to-Farm Book About Food and Farming” from Michigan Farm Bureau Legislative Counsel Rebecca Park on Feb. 20, 2019. It was the fifth year in a row this effort’s taken place, in hopes the lawmakers will take them into classrooms, read to students and leave them with teachers during March is Reading Month.
Today, food and agriculture represents Michigan’s second largest industry, contributing more than $101 billion annually to our economy and helping feed our state, country and world. It is no surprise then that agriculture supports the Michigan Potash and Salt Company’s (MPSC) new project in Osceola County. We believe the project has immense potential to help conserve and protect water quality, and boost Michigan farmers’ productivity, while strengthening our rural communities and economy.
FBI honors Lenore Pichler with Elton R. Smith Award
West Michigan cities are primed for growth, but local business leaders say a shortage of quality infant and toddler care is holding it up. Access to infant care is a persistent challenge for the region’s seasonal agricultural workers. They often work long hours outside of the “normal” child care availability from 7:30 a.m. to 6 p.m.
Low commodity prices and higher input costs have many farmers searching for answers on how to weather the current farm economy and still maintain a healthy farm operation for the long-term. According to Calhoun County Farm Bureau President Andrea Boughton, two local workshops, titled “Improving Farm Health,” are scheduled for Feb. 28 in Albion and March 1 in Battle Creek. The workshops will provide farmers management insights as they consider their options for 2019.
A record number of newcomers to the organization attended Michigan Farm Bureau’s second Growing Together Conference last weekend in Grand Rapids, returning home Sunday with refreshed motivation, practical new tools and a deeper understanding of their place in the state’s largest and most successful agricultural group.
While some farmers struggle to export goods into non-domestic markets — think soybean farmers with China — others are beginning to “open doors.”
Following a decline in the number of milk cows in November and relatively high slaughter rates during December, the forecast for the size of the milking herd has been lowered 5,000 head for the first half of 2019; however, the rounded estimate for the year remains at 9.365 million head. Based on relatively weak yield growth continuing in November, the 2019 milk per cow forecast has been lowered 50 pounds to 23,505. These changes result in a milk production forecast of 220.1 billion pounds for 2019, down 0.5 billion pounds from the previous forecast.
The November USDA/NASS Crop Production Report showed U.S. 2018 corn production to be 14.6 billion bushels, down 1% from the October estimate. It would still be the second largest crop on record, just below the 2016 record of 2016 of 15.1 billion bushels.
The development of an upper air trough across central and eastern North America during the last week of October led to northwesterly flow across the Great Lakes region and to an extended period of early winter weather through much of the first half of November.
Welcome to the 2018 Field Focus feature. This year, six of our seven reporters are members of ProFile, a leadership development program of Michigan Farm Bureau. In each print edition of Michigan Farm News through the growing season, these young farmers will tell you about conditions on their farms and their regions.
Seasonably cool and drier weather developed across the Great Lakes region during late October, allowing a resumption and/or acceleration of fall harvest and fieldwork activities across Michigan. With a persistent troughing pattern in place during much of the latter half of October, temperatures fell to below normal values, slowing grain dry down and soil evaporation rates.
The jet stream flow across North America changed dramatically during mid-October, with the transition of the highly amplified western troughing/eastern ridging pattern of the past few weeks to a western ridging/ eastern troughing pattern.