This week on AgweekTV, we reflect on why we're thankful for ag as we kick off the holiday season. That includes a new FFA chapter, which is giving "hope" to the next generation of agriculturalists. You'll pay more for this year's Thanksgiving holiday feast but can still give thanks for an affordable food supply. And ag lawyer Sarah Vogel chronicles her famous fight against the government on behalf of farmers in a new book.
\u0009WELCOME TO AGWEEK TV, I'M MICHELLE ROOK HERE AT THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF FARM BROADCASTING CONVENTION IN KANSAS CITY.
\u0009THE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY HAS DETERMINED GLYPHOSATE, ATRAZINE AND SIMAZINE ARE LIKELY TO ADVERSELY AFFECT CERTAIN SPECIES UNDER THE ENDANGERED SPECIES ACT AND THEIR HABITATS.
\u0009THE AGENCY CLAIMS NEARLY 1,700 SPECIES AND 800 HABITATS COULD BE IMPACTED. EPA IS NOW DELIVERING ITS REPORT TO THE U.S. FISH AND WILDLIFE SERVICE AND NATIONAL MARINE FISHERIES SERVICE SO THEY CAN DEVELOP THEIR OWN FINDINGS. HOWEVER, IT COULD RESULT IN A NEW LABEL AND USE RESTRICTIONS ON THESE THREE HERBICIDES.
Kevin Scott: With EPA right now, it seems like the science does not matter much.
\u0009THE AMERICAN SOYBEAN ASSOCIATION AND AMERICAN FARM BUREAU FILED A JOINT STATEMENT SAYING THE EPA FAILED TO USE "THE BEST SCIENCE AVAILABLE" WHEN EVALUATION THESE CROP PROTECTION PRODUCTS.
\u0009PRESIDENT BIDEN SIGNED THE INFRASTRUCTURE INVESTMENT AND JOBS ACT INTO LAW ON MONDAY.
\u0009THE 1.2-TRILLION DOLLAR PACKAGE NOT ONLY REAUTHORIZES THE SURFACE TRANSPORTATION PROGRAMS FOR FIVE YEAR, BUT ALSO MAKES A 550 BILLION DOLLAR INVESTMENT ON TOP OF EXISTING PROGRAMS.
FARM GROUPS SAY IT'S AN HISTORIC INVESTMENT IN THE NATION'S TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM AND INCLUDES 17-BILLION DOLLARS FOR PORTS AND WATERWAYS, 66-BILLION FOR RAIL AND 110-BILLION DOLLARS FOR ROADS AND BRIDGES.
Jerry Schmitz: We essentially today are living on roads that were 1940s and 50s and it's time to determine how we best move that product, not only for farmers but for consumers as well.
\u0009THE BILL WILL HELP AMERICAN AGRICULTURE STAY COMPETITIVE ON THE GLOBAL STAGE AND MAKE CRITICAL INVESTMENTS IN RURAL AMERICA.
\u0009USDA IS ALLOWING NINE PORK PROCESSING PLANTS TO OPERATE AT FASTER LINE SPEEDS.
\u0009A 20-YEAR OLD PILOT PROGRAM ALLOWED FASTER NSIS, OR NEW SWINE INSPECTION SYSTEM, LINE SPEEDS TO EXPAND PORK PACKING CAPACITY BY 2.5-PERCENT. HOWEVER, THAT WAS REVOKED THIS SUMMER WHEN A FEDERAL COURT INTERVENED.
Andrew Bailey: Where you know that two and a half percent is nationally, but for some plants that was 20, almost 30-percent of capacity lost. And if you're a producer sending your hogs there you suddenly having to send them much further away.
\u0009THE PLANTS CAN NOW APPLY FOR USDA'S ONE YEAR TRIAL PROGRAM, DURING WHICH THEY WILL NEED TO DOCUMENT THE EFFECTS OF LINE SPEEDS ON WORKERS AND SHARE IT WITH OSHA.
\u0009THE DECISION WAS WELCOMED BY THE INDUSTRY AND WILL INCREASE PACKING CAPACITY AND HELP EASE CURRENT SUPPLY CHAIN CHALLENGES.
\u0009THE BIDEN ADMINISTRATION ANNOUNCED MORE KEY USDA APPOINTMENTS AND NOMINATIONS THIS WEEK.
\u0009SOUTH DAKOTA FARMER MARCIA BUNGER WAS NAMED ADMINISTRATOR OF THE RISK MANAGEMENT AGENCY. SHE WORKED FOR THE FARM SERVICE AGENCY FOR 25 YEARS.
\u0009SHEFALI MEHTA WAS NAMED DEPUTY UNDERSECRETARY FOR RESEARCH, EDUCATION AND ECONOMICS.
\u0009AND JOSE EMILIO ESTEBAN HAS BEEN NOMINATED TO SERVE AS UNDERSECRETARY FOR FOOD SAFETY, AFTER A TENURE WITH THE FOOD SAFETY AND INSPECTION SERVICE.
\u0009WITH THE THANKSGIVING HOLIDAY NEXT WEEK, WE'RE FOCUSING ON ALL THE REASONS WE, IN AGRICULTURE, ARE THANKFUL. ONE OF THOSE IS OUR AFFORDABLE FOOD SUPPLY.
\u0009THE COST OF THIS YEAR'S THANKSGIVING FEAST WILL BE HIGHER THIS YEAR THAN IN 2020. USDA'S LATEST CONSUMER PRICE INDEX FOR FOOD SHOWS PRICES ARE UP 4.6- PERCENT YEAR OVER YEAR. HOWEVER, CONSUMERS STILL HAVE MUCH TO BE THANKFUL FOR THIS HOLIDAY.
The increased price for this year's holiday meal is largely a result of supply chain disruptions and higher energy prices.
Scott VanderWal: There's no shortages out here. I think we have the leftovers of the pandemic, but we've also got energy prices that are going up very significantly.
According to USDA turkeys are seeing the biggest hike in years Thanksgiving meal with average prices at $1.33 per pound.
Dr. David Zeman: Probably about a 25% increase compared to last year and previous years.
A 2.3-percent decline in U.S. turkey production is partly to blame, plus the demand for larger whole hens this year for Thanksgiving.
Zeman : This year everyone's guessing that families are going to be getting back together and so they're going to be looking for that bigger bird.
Zeman says there are enough birds being produced to take care of Thanksgiving needs, but the industry is having difficulty getting those birds to the grocery store.
Zeman: The big issue is going to be supply chain issues and transportation issues and labor is an ongoing and chronic problem with the poultry and meat production industry.
Despite food inflation this Thanksgiving and for 2021, American consumers are still getting a bargain.
Larry Rhoden: The message all the time in the United States, We should not take for granted the fact that we have the cheapest food on the planet and it's been that way my entire life. And that's part of our policy, is a cheap food policy.
And as a percentage of the consumer's disposable income, food is still affordable.
VanderWal: The last 10 or 15 years anyway we've been in the 9% to 10% range of what we spend as a percentage of our income in this country on food and there are countries that are 25, 30, 50-percent maybe even more than that. So certainly we have a lot to be thankful for.
\u0009THE GREAT PLAINS FOOD BANK IN FARGO HELPS FEED MORE THAN 150-THOUSAND PEOPLE A YEAR. THAT TAKES A LOT OF FOOD, AND THEY'RE THANKFUL FOR AREA FARMERS WHO HELP THEM FEED ALL THOSE PEOPLE.
\u0009GREAT PLAINS SERVES NORTH DAKOTA, AND CLAY COUNTY, MINNESOTA.
LOCAL FARMERS DONATE ABOUT 2O PERCENT OF THE FRESH PRODUCE GIVEN TO THE GREAT PLAINS FOOD BANK.
\u0009THAT WAS ABOUT 4.6 MILLION POUNDS IN 2020. THIS TIME OF YEAR, THOSE DONATIONS INCLUDE CORN, POTATOES AND SQUASH.
\u0009ON THE DAY WE VISITED, VOLUNTEERS WERE PACKING A BULK DONATION OF POTATOES INTO SMALLER PACKAGES, TO BE DISTRIBUTED TO FOOD PANTRIES AROUND THE REGION.
Kramer Stuth: THE FRESH PRODUCE THAT WE PROVIDE TO OUR COMMUNITY MEMBERS IS HUGE, BECAUSE WE LIKE TO ALWAYS TRY TO HAVE THE MOST HEALTHY AND NUTRITIOUS FOODS AVAILABLE. AND CANNED GOODS ARE FANTASTIC BECAUSE THEY HAVE LONG SHELF LIVES, BUT THEY'RE NOT NECESSARILY ALWAYS THE HEALTHIEST TYPE.
\u0009BECAUSE OF THE PERISHABLE NATURE OF THESE DONATIONS, GREAT PLAINS ALSO REALLY DEPENDS ON COMMUNITY VOLUNTEERS TO GET THE PRODUCE DISTRIBUTED AS QUICKLY AS POSSIBLE.
Katie Pinke: COMING UP ON AGWEEK TV, WE'LL TAKE YOU TO EAST CENTRAL NORTH DAKOTA TO SHOW YOU A NEW FFA CHAPTER.
\u0009MANY HIGH SCHOOLS ARE STRUGGLING TO FIND AG TEACHERS. THAT CAN MEAN SCHOOLS HAVE TO DROP THEIR AG PROGRAMS AND FFA CHAPTERS.
\u0009BUT IN THIS WEEK'S AGWEEK COVER STORY, KATIE PINKE VISITED AN EAST CENTRAL NORTH DAKOTA SCHOOL AND COMMUNITY THAT ARE THANKFUL FOR THEIR NEW AG PROGRAM.
Katie Pinke: IN 2020, HOPE PAGE SCHOOL DISTRICT STARTED A NEW AG EDUCATION PROGRAM AND FFA CHAPTER.
Sarah Wendt: I'M SUPER GRATEFUL AND THANKFUL THAT THE HOPE PAGE COMMUNITY AND SCHOOL TOOK A CHANCE ON AG ED.
Katie Pinke: SARAH WENTZ WAS A FIRST YEAR TEACHER IN 2020, AND A PART OF STARTING THE AG EDUCATION PROGRAM AND FFA CHAPTER.
Sarah Wendt: THIS IS ONE OF THE MOST AGRICULTURALLY RICH AREAS IN THE STATE, WHY ISN'T THERE AN AG PROGRAM? I COULD TELL AS SOON AS I CAME THAT PEOPLE WERE EXCITED ABOUT AN AG PROGRAM.
Hailey Schlotfeldt: FRESHMAN YEAR IF YOU WERE TO ASK ME IF I WOULD BE INTERVIEWED TO BE ON SOMETHING LIKE THIS I'D BE LIKE ABSOLUTELY NOT, NO WAY. AND LIKE BEING ABLE TO TALK TO PEOPLE AND BEING MORE LIKE IN SOCIAL SITUATIONS, I FEEL LIKE I'M MORE COMFORTABLE.
Katie Pinke: BEN GULLICKS GREW UP WITH FFA AND WAS A SUPPORTER OF STARTING THE NEW AG EDUCATION PROGRAM. HIS DAUGHTER EMMA PARTICIPATES.
Ben Gullicks: WE NEED TO KEEP OUR YOUTH INVOLVED IN AG AND KEEP THEM IN OUR SMALLER COMMUNITIES AND KEEP THE COMMUNITIES THRIVING.
Katie Pinke: THE HOPE PAGE SCHOOL DISTRICT IS THANKFUL FOR AG EDUCATION AND FFA
Hailey Schlotfeldt: I'M BEYOND THANKFUL FOR IT. BECAUSE I KNOW IT'S CHANGED ME AS A PERSON.
Katie Pinke: FROM HOPE, NORTH DAKOTA, THIS IS KATIE PINKE FOR AGWEEK.
\u0009YOU CAN READ MORE IN THE NEXT AGWEEK MAGAZINE OR AT AGWEEK.COM.
\u0009NORTH DAKOTA FARMERS, AND THOSE AROUND THE NATION, OWE A DEBT OF THANKS TO SARAH VOGEL.
\u0009THE LONGTIME ATTORNEY HAS COME OUT WITH A BOOK CHRONICLING HOW SHE HELPED STOPPED THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT FROM FORECLOSING ON THOUSANDS OF FAMILY FARMS IN THE 1980'S.
\u0009MIKKEL PATES SAT DOWN WITH VOGEL FOR AN INTERVIEW. HERE'S A BRIEF SNIPPET.
Sarah Vogel, former Ag Commissioner from North Dakota. She's written a new book, The Farmer's Lawyer, endorsed by both Willie Nelson and John Grisham. Kind of a legal thriller going back to the 1980's things. Why did you write it?
Sarah: I WANTED TO WRITE ABOUT WHAT HAPPENED IN THE EIGHTIES AND WHAT WE DID IN THE EIGHTIES TO STOP BASICALLY A CATACLYSMIC DECLINE OF FAMILY FARMERS. WE ENDED UP WINNING, AND WE HELPED A LOT OF PEOPLE, 240 THOUSAND PLUS FARMERS WERE PROTECTED.
BUT YOU REALLY DIDN'T KNOW THAT MUCH ABOUT FARMING PER SE.
Sarah: NOTHING! I KNEW NOTHING! I'M DOWN AT THIS PRETTY BIG FARM, AND HE POINTS OVER TO SOME BIG HONKING PIECE OF MACHINERY AND HE SAD IT COST ME UMPTY-UMP DOLLARS TO BUY THAT. AND I GO WHAT IS IT? AND IT WAS A COMBINE. AND I LOOKED AT THE FARMER AND HIS KNEES BUCKLED. THE USDA AMBUSHED ME BY BRINGING WITNESSES AND WE HAD AGREED WE WOULDN'T BRING WITNESSES AND HAVE A LIVE TRIAL. AND I SAID ALLEN WHAT DO I DO? I'VE NEVER DONE A TRIAL. AND HE SAID, AND I WILL NEVER FORGET IT, HE SAID I'VE ALWAYS HAD GOOD LUCK CALLING THE OTHER SIDES' WITNESSES AS MY OWN. THEY HATE THAT. AND I SAID OK, I'VE GOT A PLAN. SO THE NEXT DAY WHEN THE TRIAL STARTED I CALLED THE FARMERS HOME PEOPLE AND MADE MY CASE, BASICALLY THROUGH THEM.
QUITE A BAPTISM.
Sarah: YES, YES. BUT THE FUNNY THING IS THAT THAT TRIAL RECORD, THE GOVERNMENT AGREED THAT THAT WOULD BE THE RECORD FOR THE WHOLE NATION. AND HAD, LIKE OVERNIGHT TO GET READY.
\u0009FOR MORE OF MIKKEL'S INTERVIEW WITH VOGEL AND THIS LANDMARK CASE, GO TO AGWEEK.COM OR READ AGWEEK MAGAZINE.
STILL AHEAD ON OUR SHOW GROUND IS BROKEN ON A 28-MILLION DOLLAR BIOPRODUCTS FACILITY AT SDSU.
OUR TEMPERATURES HAVE BEEN ON A REAL ROLLER COASTER THIS WEEK BUT WE'VE REMAINED DRY IN THE REGION.
WITH MORE HERE'S JOHN WITH OUR AGRI-WEATHER OUTLOOK.
AGWEEKTV SOY INSIGHT BROUGHT TO YOU BY THE NORTH DAKOTA SOYBEAN COUNCIL
\u0009THE NORTH DAKOTA SOYBEAN COUNCIL WANTS FARMERS TO LEARN MORE ABOUT RENEWABLE DIESEL AND BIODIESEL, AND HOW IT CAN HELP FUEL THEIR FARMS.
\u0009THE NORTH DAKOTA SOYBEAN COUNCIL IS HOLDING TWELVE "FUELING YOUR FARM" WORKSHOPS, ONE IN EACH DISTRICT IN THE STATE, OVER THE NEXT YEAR. WITH EXPERTISE FROM FUEL CONSULTANTS AT MEG CORP, THE WORKSHOPS WILL COVER IMPORTANT TOPICS FOR THE SUCCESSFUL OPERATION OF DIESEL EQUIPMENT. THE GOAL IS TO GET FARMERS CONFIDENT IN USING, AND PROMOTING, BIODIESEL.
Jena Bjertness: IT'S A FUEL THAT THEY OWN, IT'S A FUEL THAT WAS MADE WITH THEIR HELP, AND SO WE WANT THEM TO FEEL LIKE THEY CAN USE IT AND FEEL CONFIDENT DOING SO.
\u0009MEG CORP IS A FUEL CONSULTING COMPANY THAT WORKS WITH SOYBEAN GROUPS IN THE MIDWEST, TO PROVIDE SUPPORT FOR THEIR BIODIESEL EFFORTS. ANOTHER GOAL IS TO HIGHLIGHT HOW MUCH BIODIESEL HAS IMPROVED IN THE PAST TWENTY YEARS, AND HELP THEM UNDERSTAND WHAT A MARKET DRIVER RENEWABLE FUELS ARE FOR THEM.
Lisa Pedderson: THIS IS A DROP IN FUEL, YOU DON'T HAVE TO HAVE DIFFERENT FUELING EQUIPMENT, YOU DON'T HAVE TO HAVE A DIFFERENT VEHICLE. IT JUST DISPLACES SOME OF THE PETROLEUM FUEL AND YOU JUST PLUG AND PLAY.
\u0009THE FIRST 3 OF THE 12 FREE WORKSHOPS ARE THE WEEK OF NOVEMBER 29TH IN WAHPETON, OAKES AND LISBON, NORTH DAKOTA. REGISTRATION INFORMATION IS ON YOUR SCREEN.
\u0009A NEW BIOPRODUCTS INSTITUTE IS BEING BUILT AT SOUTH DAKOTA STATE UNIVERSITY.
\u0009THE 28-MILLION DOLLAR FACILITY WILL DEVELOP NEW USES FOR THE REGION'S COMMODITIES.
POET donated five million dollars to the institute which Jeff Lautt says serves as an innovation center for the next generation of bioproducts.
Jeff Lautt: The potential is virtually untapped for agriculture to create solutions for the world in terms of sustainability.
The center will also advance next generation biofuels made from corn and soybean oil.
Lautt: Biofuels have now become a byproduct of biofuels.
President Barry Dunn says SDSU and South Dakota Mines will collaborate on research that will take plant substrates from corn, wheat and beans.
Barry Dunn: And turn that into a degradable product that replaces a petroleum based product.
And new bioproducts will help farmers add value to their crops through the growing global bioeconomy.
Ostrem: We want to promote our product in a sustainable way and renewable and this is an opportunity to continue to develop that demand.
The 45,000-square-foot facility was also made possible through $20 million in legislative funding.
STILL AHEAD ON AGWEEK TV,
Emily Beal: WE'LL VISIT A MINNESOTA LLAMA FARM THAT TURNED THEIR FAMILY PETS INTO AN AGRI-TOURISM BUSINESS.
\u0009"CARLSONS LOVABLE LLAMAS" HAS GROWN FROM A SMALL FAMILY FARM HOBBY, TO A THRIVING AGRI-TOURISM BUSINESS.
\u0009AS EMILY BEAL FOUND, THE CARLSONS ARE THANKFUL FOR HOW LLAMAS HAVE HELPED THEIR FARM AND FAMILY.
Rick Carlson: WE GOT THEM KIND OF PRETTY MUCH AS PETS, AND THEN EVERYTHING HAS GROWN OUT OF CONTROL.
RICK CARLSON NEVER IMAGINED THE PLACE LLAMAS WOULD TAKE ON HIS FARM, AND IN HIS LIFE, WHEN HE BOUGHT A COUPLE FOR HIS KIDS ON HIS FARM JUST OUTSIDE THE TWIN CITIES, NEARLY 25 YEARS AGO. IT QUICKLY TURNED INTO A 4-H PROJECT, THEN KEPT GOING.
Rick Carlson: IT JUST KEPT GETTING BIGGER AND BIGGER AND I KEPT GETTING MORE AND MORE LLAMAS.
TODAY THE CARLSONS HAVE 65 LLAMAS, ONE OF THE LARGEST LLAMA OPERATIONS IN THE COUNTRY. BUT AS IT GREW, THE COST OF KEEPING THEM ALSO KEPT RISING. SO HE STARTED WELCOMING VISITORS TO THE FARM, AND IT JUST TOOK OFF.
Rick Carlson: SO SOMEBODY MENTIONED WHY DON'T YOU DO BIRTHDAY PARTIES? SO WE STARTED DOING BIRTHDAY PARTIES. AND THEN WE GOT SO MANY REQUESTS WE COULDN'T KEEP UP WITH BIRTHDAY PARTIES. AND THEN WE STARTED DOING FIELD TRIPS AND DAY CARES AND NURSING HOMES.
THEY EVEN DO WEDDINGS. THEY SELL YARN MADE FROM THE LLAMAS' WOOL, AND PRODUCTS MADE WITH IT. CARLSON SAYS LLAMAS ARE A MISUNDERSTOOD ANIMAL, SO HIS GOALS ARE EDUCATION AND ENTERTAINMENT.
Rick Carlson: ONE WORD I WOULD USE FOR ALL THE THINGS WE DO IS REWARDING, VERY REWARDING.
OH, AND ONE OF THEIR LLAMAS HAS EVEN STARRED IN AN E-HARMONY COMMERCIAL.
Emily Beal: IT'S CLEAR TO SEE THAT THESE LLAMAS HAVE NOT ONLY HAD A POSITIVE IMPACT ON THE CARLSON FAMILY, BUT THE LOCAL FOUR-H YOUTH AS WELL. WITH AGWEEK, I'M EMILY BEAL IN WACONIA, MINNESOTA.
THANKS FOR WATCHING THIS WEEK'S EDITION OF AG WEEK TV.
REMEMBER, FOR ALL YOUR AG NEWS, GO TO AG WEEK.COM, AND FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND INSTAGRAM. HAVE YOURSELF A GREAT AND SAFE WEEK.