Mikkel Pates / Agweek Staff Writer
As America wades into its new trade war, I've been thinking a lot about an interview I had with former Manitoba Premier Dufferin "Duff" Roblin. In the 1960s he spent his political capital to build flood protection for Winnipeg, which disastrously was flooded by the Red River in 1950. Roblin was derided for spending $64 million to build what his critics called "Duff's Ditch" — the kind of diversion that Fargo-Moorhead now wants to build for $2.4 billion. Duff's Ditch has saved some $40 billion.
BELFIELD, N.D. — Dicamba-tolerant soybeans are a big deal — even if you live three miles east of the North Dakota badlands and in the midst of oil rigs.
BISMARCK, N.D. — Doug Goehring, North Dakota agriculture commissioner, wants the federal Environmental Protection Agency to consider a lower rate of dicamba herbicide to be applied on dicamba-beans. And if they don't, he'll likely allow lower rates in North Dakota. Complaints appear to be down in North Dakota and Minnesota, while South Dakota isn't releasing numbers.
BALATON, Minn. — Leaders of The trū® Shrimp Company will commission Balaton Bay Reef Training and Innovation Center on Aug. 22 in Balaton, Minn. The 12,000 square-foot and 40-foot-tall Training and Innovation Center is the only of its kind in the world. The facility will be filled with shrimp and closed to the public following the celebration.
FARGO, N.D. — Two supervisors on a Nebraska fresh potato farm operated by R.D. Offutt Company in Fargo are among those indicted in an illegal immigration sting on Wednesday by the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement. Mark Dickerson, director of communications for RDO, confirmed that Elkhorn River Farms LLC is part of their farming company. Dickerson said RDO is "aware of the situation and working with authorities."
HARWOOD, N.D. — CommonGround North Dakota, a volunteer advocacy organization group, threw the fifth annual Banquet in a Field event at the Peterson Farms Seed near Harwood. Julie Peterson, the event's farm host, and Val Wagner of Monango, N.D., coordinator of CommonGround North Dakota, say the invitation-only event brought another group of 120 urban invitees to the farm.
FARGO, N.D. — Palindromes Inc. is one of an increasing number of companies working on paying farmers for quality, not just yield, and helping to insulate them from the vagaries of commodity markets and trade wars. The company's chief executive is Karla Klingner, 41, a lawyer from Columbia, Mo., with a career in political and agribusiness. She incorporated Palindromes in Delaware in the fall of 2017, announced it publicly in May 2018, and is narrowing its headquarters in the Midwest.
CASSELTON, N.D. — University researchers in Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota are collecting aphids they believe may be resistant to existing pesticides and are asking farmers to alert them to fields where they think resistance may be occurring. Jan Knodel, North Dakota State University Extension entomologist, says so far this year soybean numbers have been insufficient to test.
TWIN BROOKS, S.D. — Corn is looking good but soybeans are "sketchy" in some parts of northeast South Dakota, after a hail storm on July 10. Harlan Bohn, 63, and his son, Greg, raise corn, soybeans and alfalfa on a small farm. They have 140 acres each of corn and soybeans and 100 acres of alfalfa along the south fork of the Whetstone River, which ends up in Big Stone Lake. They also rent about 200 acres of pasture for their registered red and black Angus and commercial stock cows.
BALTIC, S.D. — The Ag PhD Field Day is an impressive on its own — a purely private event, staged again on July 26 that hosted an estimated 10,000 farmers from 40 states and 15 countries. The one-day event has been growing over the past 15 years and is just the culmination of an entrepreneurial machine known as the Hefty brothers — that seems to move into the stratosphere of agronomic confidence and authority.