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AgweekTV Full Show: Avian influenza, disaster relief, container shortage, BetterFed Beef

This week on AgweekTV, high path avian influenza continues to spread. We'll look at the impact. USDA announces disaster relief for livestock producers. A container shortage that affects specialty crops has gotten worse in the last six months. And we feature a cattle operation that's perfected BetterFed Beef.

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This week on AgweekTV, high path avian influenza continues to spread. We'll look at the impact. USDA announces disaster relief for livestock producers. A container shortage that affects specialty crops has gotten worse in the last six months. And we feature a cattle operation that's perfected BetterFed Beef.

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WELCOME TO AGWEEK TV, I'M EMILY BEAL.

USDA HAS ANNOUNCED SOME WELCOME DISASTER ASSISTANCE FOR LIVESTOCK PRODUCERS, INCLUDING 750 MILLION IN THE EMERGENCY LIVESTOCK RELIEF PROGRAM.

PRODUCERS WHO HAVE APPROVED APPLICATIONS THROUGH THE 2021 LIVESTOCK FORAGE DISASTER PROGRAM FOR FORAGE LOSSES DUE TO DROUGHT WILL SOON BE RECEIVING PAYMENTS FOR INCREASES IN SUPPLEMENTAL FEED COSTS IN 2021.

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Marcy Svenningsen: WELL WITHOUT A DOUBT, THIS WILL HAVE A LONG TERM IMPACT ON, ESPECIALLY OUR LIVESTOCK PRODUCERS. MOST PRODUCERS SPEND YEARS BUILDING UP THEIR HERD, CHOOSING GENETICS, AND WHEN YOU HAVE TO START CULLING YOUR COWS, AND SO THE EXTRA PAYMENT THIS SPRING WILL BE, I'M SURE, VERY WELCOME.

FSA WILL ALSO BE OFFERING ADDITIONAL ASSISTANCE THROUGH ELAP OR THE EMERGENCY ASSISTANCE FOR LIVESTOCK PROGRAM. THIS HELPS RANCHERS COVER ABOVE NORMAL COSTS OF HAULING LIVESTOCK TO FORAGE. THE POLICY ENHANCEMENT ALSO COMPLIMENTS PREVIOUS COMPENSATION FOR HAULING FEED TO LIVESTOCK.

THE ELAP PROGRAM IS RETROACTIVE TO 2021, AND GOING FORWARD THIS YEAR.

U.S. AG SECRETARY TOM VILSACK MET WITH MEXICO'S SECRETARY OF AG THIS WEEK TO CONTINUE COOPERATION ON TRADE BUT THE TWO DID TALK ABOUT EXPORT STATUS AMID THE SPREAD OF HIGH PATH AVIAN INFLUENZA.

VILSACK SAYS MEXICO AND MOST OTHER COUNTRIES ARE STILL TAKING U.S. POULTRY, POULTRY PRODUCTS AND EGG IMPORTS, EXCEPT FOR THE SPECIFIED INFECTED AREAS. THAT'S IN ACCORDANCE TO THE REGIONALIZATION AGREEMENTS STRUCK BACK IN 2015.

Tom Vilsack: Many countries are focusing their export concerns and restrictions on specific counties and in some cases where there are multiple cases in a state some countries have decided to do a statewide restriction. But there has not been an effort to do a nationwide restriction which is what we were concerned about.

VILSACK ALSO ANNOUNCED THE TWO COUNTRIES HAVE CONCLUDED AN AGREEMENT ON BIOTECH, PLUS ALL NECESSARY PLANT HEALTH PROTOCOLS TO EXPAND MEXICAN IMPORTS OF U.S. TABLE STOCK AND CHIPPING POTATOES BY MAY 15.

LESS THAN TWO YEARS AGO WE WERE REPORTING STORIES ABOUT DAIRY PRODUCERS GOING OUT OF BUSINESS DUE TO LOW MILK PRICES. BUT AGWEEK'S MICHELLE ROOK JOINS US TO LOOK AT HOW THAT HAS CHANGED.

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MILK PRICES HAVE DONE A 180 SINCE THE HEIGHT OF THE DAIRY CRISIS. IN FACT, THEY'VE RALLIED OVER 8.50 DOLLARS SINCE THE BEGINNING OF 2021. DAIRY PRODUCERS ARE ENJOYING NEAR RECORD MILK PRICES AND EXPERTS BELIEVE THAT WILL CONTINUE FOR AWHILE.

MARKET ANALYST SARINA SHARP SPOKE TO DAIRY PRODUCERS AT THE CENTRAL PLAINS DAIRY EXPO. SHE'S OPTIMISTIC ABOUT THE PRICE OUTLOOK, WITH MILK FUTURES WELL ABOVE TWENTY DOLLARS ALL THE WAY THROUGH 2022. ITS PARTIALLY A RESULT OF HERD CONTRACTION DUE TO HIGH PRODUCTION COSTS

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Sarina Sharp: We have lower milk production in the United States for the past four months, we've seen lower milk production in Europe, in Australia and in New Zealand. So those are some of the biggest dairy product exporters in the world and as long as they're not growing I think that U.S. dairy prices will stay very high.

DAIRY PRODUCERS ATTENDING EXPO SAY THEY NEED THE NEAR TO RECORD MILK PRICES TO OFFSET MUCH HIGHER FEED COSTS.

Marv Post: Contributed completely to it. But as we look towards the fall and putting in corn silage which is the main staple of the cow's diet it's definitely going to have a bigger cost.

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POST SAYS WITH THE CURRENT MILK PRICES MOST DAIRY OPERATIONS ARE ABOVE BREAKEVEN, THEY JUST HOPE IT STAYS THAT WAY.

THANKS MICHELLE.

HIGH QUALITY BEEF LIKE WAGYU OR KOBE IS EXPENSIVE, AND HARD TO FIND.

BUT SOME NORTH DAKOTA BEEF EXPERTS HAVE DEVELOPED AN ALTERNATIVE.

THE CATTLEMEN SAY THEY'VE WORKED OUT THE PERFECT BLEND OF GENETICS AND NUTRITION, TO MAKE "BETTER FED BEEF". IT'S THIS WEEK'S AGWEEK COVER STORY.

WHAT IF WE COULD BRING THE VERY BEST BEEF DIRECTLY TO CONSUMERS?

BEEF ENTHUSIAST MAX WINDERS AND LIVESTOCK NUTRITION SPECIALIST TOM PETERS HAD BEEN KICKING AROUND THE IDEA OF BRINGING BETTER BEEF RIGHT TO PEOPLE'S HOMES FOR DECADES. THEY SPENT YEARS PERFECTING THEIR CATTLE, LIKE RATIONS WITH MICRONUTRIENTS FIGURED DOWN TO PARTS PER MILLION.

Max Winders: YOU SEE, IF YOU'RE GOING TO BRING THE BEST BREED TO THE MARKET, YOU HAVE TO HAVE GREAT GENETICS, THEN YOU HAVE TO HAVE GREAT MANAGEMENT, YOU HAVE TO HAVE FANTASTIC NUTRITION AND YOU NEED A GREAT ENVIRONMENT,

WINDERS GREW UP ON A BEEF, DAIRY AND SHEEP FARM IN NEW ZEALAND, AND HE HAS A TASTE FOR EXPENSIVE BEEF, LIKE WAGYU, BUT THAT'S OUT OF THE QUESTION FOR MOST PEOPLE. SO THEY DEVELOPED A HIGHER FAT BREED THEY CALL "ONYA".

Max Winders: AND THAT REALLY CONTRIBUTES TO TENDERNESS OF THE BEEF AND FLAVOR.

LUKE GORECKI RAISES CATTLE FOR BETTER FED BEEF AT HIS SOUTHWEST MINNESOTA FARM. HE'S PROUD OF HOW HE TAKES CARE OF HIS ANIMALS, AND HOW MUCH PEOPLE LIKE THE BEEF.

Luke Gorecki: ENSURING THAT THE CONSUMER IS GETTING THE BEST QUALITY BEEF AND SOME OF THE BEST RAISED BEEF HERE IN THE UNITED STATES AND THEN YOU GET TO HEAR THEM SAY HOW GOOD IT WAS AND HOW MUCH THEY ENJOYED IT, THAT KIND OF, YOU KNOW, IT MAKES ALL THAT HARD WORK WORTHWHILE.

AFTER RUNNING TENDERNESS TESTS ON THE CATTLE, NDSU MEAT SCIENCE PROFESSOR DR. ROBERT MADDOCK IS A BELIEVER.

Dr. Robert Maddock: . IT'S NOT SUPER SURPRISING THAT THEY END UP WITH HIGH QUALITY SUPER TENDER BEEF, BUT THE FACT THAT IT WAS EQUIVALENT TO THIS MUCH MORE EXPENSIVE WAGYU BEEF, WAS NOT A SURPRISE BUT IT WAS A NICE FINDING.

Max Winders: CARING FOR THE LAND, CARING FOR THE ENVIRONMENT, CARING FOR THE ANIMALS. THEY'RE NOT MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE OF EACH OTHER. IF YOU DO ALL OF THEM WELL, YOU HAVE A WAY BETTER CHANCE OF SURVIVING.>

BETTER FED BEEF HAS SEVENTEEN FARM FAMILIES, LIKE THE GORECKIS, RAISING CATTLE FOR THE VENTURE. YOU CAN READ MORE IN THE NEXT AGWEEK MAGAZINE, OR AT AGWEEK.COM .

ON WEDNESDAY THE SUPREME COURT REINSTATED FOR NOW THE TRUMP-ERA WATERS OF THE U.S. RULE. THE JUSTICES AGREED TO HALT A LOWER COURT JUDGE'S ORDER THROWING OUT THE RULE AND SENDING IT BACK TO THE ENVIRONMENTAL PROTECTION AGENCY.

COMING UP ON AGWEEK TV, U.S. EXPORTERS ARE LOSING BUSINESS BECAUSE OF A LACK OF SHIPPING CONTAINERS. WE'LL TAKE A LOOK AT WHAT'S CAUSING THE PROBLEM, AFTER THIS.

A SHIPPING CONTAINER SHORTAGE THAT AFFECTS SPECIALTY CROPS HAS GOTTEN WORSE IN THE LAST SIX MONTHS.

AS MIKKEL PATES REPORTS, CONGRESS IS WORKING ON A FIX, BUT IT MAY NOT COME FAST ENOUGH.

Jay Schuler: WE'RE THE LITTLE GUYS, AND WE DON'T HAVE THE POWER THAT THE BIG GUYS DO.

JAY SCHULER SERVES ON A DISTRICT EXPORT COUNCIL, IN ADDITION TO HIS ROLE AS A FOUNDING SHAREHOLDER AT RICHLAND IFC. THE COMPANY DEVELOPS, CONTRACTS AND SHIPS SPECIALTY FOOD-GRADE SOYBEANS AND CORN DOMESTICALLY AND INTERNATIONALLY. THEY RELY ON CONTAINER SHIPPING.

Jay Schuler: IT'S HAS ALLOWED US IN NORTH DAKOTA AND NORTHWEST MINNESOTA TO INCREASE OUR EXPORTS OF VALUE ADDED PRODUCTS YEAR BY YEAR, UP UNTIL THE LAST YEAR AND A HALF.

BUT THE ECONOMICS OF SHIPPING A HIGH VOLUME OF IMPORTED CONSUMER GOODS, MOSTLY FROM CHINA AND OTHER ASIAN COUNTRIES TO THE U.S. MEANS THOSE COMPANIES WANT TO GET THE CONTAINERS BACK FAST, WITHOUT TAKING TIME TO RE-LOAD THEM WITH AG EXPORTS FROM THE STATES. THE PROBLEM HAS GOTTEN EVEN WORSE IN THE LAST SIX MONTHS. SCHULER SAYS THAT WHAT'S WORSE IS WATCHING EMPTY CONTAINERS GO RIGHT ON BY.

Jay Schuler: THE CUSTOMERS HAVE CONTRACTED THE PRODUCT IN ASIA, THEY'RE WAITING FOR IT, THEY NEED IT, THEIR SHELVES ARE GOING EMPTY, WE HAVE IT, WE DON'T HAVE THE CONTAINERS.

RICHLAND IFC PRESIDENT RICK BRANDENBURGER SAYS THERE DOESN'T APPEAR TO BE A QUICK FIX.

Rick Brandenburger: IT'S ESPECIALLY ACUTE HERE IN NORTH DAKOTA, MINNESOTA, BECAUSE OF OUR LOCATION. WE'RE NOT CLOSE TO ANY MAJOR IMPORT CENTERS, SO IT'S GOING TO BE A BIT OF A CHALLENGE.

Kim Gutzmer: WE'D BE NORMALLY SHIPPING OUT FIVE TO SIX CONTAINERS EVERY DAY HERE.

KIM GUTZMER IS OPERATIONS MANAGER AT RICHLAND IFC. HE SAYS NORMALLY THEY'D BE SHIPPING CORN AND SOYBEANS TO MARKETS AROUND THE WORLD. BUT THOSE STRONG MARKETS ARE JEOPARDIZED IF THE COMPANY CAN'T GET SHIPPING CONTAINERS.

2230 Kim Gutzmer: IF WE'RE LUCKY WE'RE PROBABLY GETTING, OH I DON'T KNOW, MAYBE TWO, THREE A WEEK. IT'S CONSIDERABLY LESS THAN WHAT IT HAS BEEN. THE CUSTOMERS ARE LOOKING FOR THE PRODUCT, WHICH THEY'RE NOT GETTING ON A TIMELY BASIS.

Mikkel Pates: SO U.S. SPECIALTY CROP SHIPPERS WANT CONGRESS TO STEP IN WITH SOME REAL PENALTIES FOR CONTAINER COMPANIES THAT LEAVE THEM HIGH AND DRY IN WORLD TRADE.

Jay Schuler: IT'S GOT TO CHANGE, WE'RE DESPERATE.

FOR AGWEEK, THIS IS MIKKEL PATES AT DWIGHT, NORTH DAKOTA.

A BIPARTISAN BILL PROMOTED BY MINNESOTA DEMOCRAT AMY KLOBUCHAR ANDSOUTH DAKOTA REPUBLICAN JOHN THUNE HAS PASSED THE SENATE COMMERCE COMMITTEE. THE U.S. HOUSE HAS PASSED SIMILAR BILLS.

IN JANUARY OF LAST YEAR PRESIDENT BIDEN SIGNED AN EXECUTIVE ORDER PUTTING INTO EFFECT THE 30 BY 30 CONSERVATION PROGRAM.

MARGARET BYFIELD WITH THE AMERICAN STEWARDS OF LIBERTY SAYS THE PROPOSAL PERMANENTLY PROTECTS 30-PERCENT OF THE LAND AND OCEANS BY 2030 IN THEIR NATURAL STATE, ABOVE THE 28-PERCENT THE GOVERNMENT OWNS. SHE TOLD ATTENDEES AT A FAMILIES FEEDING FAMILIES EVENT THE GOAL IS TO CONTROL PRIVATE LAND AND SO LANDOWNERS NEED TO BE CAUTIOUS ABOUT PARTICIPATING IN GOVERNMENT PROGRAMS.

Margaret Byfield: There are already laws on the books that give the government the ability to restrict land once that federal nexus is put on the land through the receiving of federal funds.

PRODUCERS SAY THEY'RE CONCERNED ABOUT THE PROGRAM AND BELIEVE THEY CAN BEST DECIDE HOW TO MANAGE THE LAND.

Jim Petrick: If you can leave it up to the farmer and leave it up to private parties we can come up with solutions that are pretty workable and probably more economically and environmentally sustainable.

BYFIELD SAYS A NATIONAL 30 BY 30 SUMMIT IS SCHEDULED IN LINCOLN ON APRIL 22.

AHEAD ON AGWEEK TV, HOW NANO LIQUID TECHNOLOGY CAN SAVE YOU MONEY ON FERTILIZER, AND IMPROVE YIELDS.

WINTER RETURNED TO THE REGION WITH A VENGEANCE THIS WEEK, HOW LONG UNTIL SPRING RETURNS?

HERE'S JOHN WITH OUR AGRI-WEATHER OUTLOOK.

THE HIGH COST OF FERTILIZER AND OTHER INPUTS THIS YEAR HAS GROWERS LOOKING FOR WAYS TO BE MORE EFFICIENT.

ONE WAY TO CUT FERTILIZER COSTS IS WITH A NEW TECHNOLOGY THAT USES NANO-PARTICLES FOR MORE EFFICIENT DELIVERY OF NUTRIENTS TO YOUR CROPS.

ROSE DUNN GIVES YOU A LOOK AT HOW NANOLIQUID TECHNOLOGY CAN SAVE YOU MONEY, AND IMPROVE YIELDS.

LAST YEAR'S DROUGHT REALLY CUT INTO YIELDS FOR SOME GROWERS, AND THE DRY CONDITIONS LINGER IN MANY AREAS. COUPLE THAT WITH HIGH AND RISING FERTILIZER COSTS, AND EVEN SHORTAGES, THAT CAN LEAD TO REAL PROBLEMS FOR GROWERS. BUT THERE IS A SOLUTION. AQUA-YIELD PRODUCTS SAVE YOU MONEY, BECAUSE YOU USE MUCH LESS.

Jim Erickson: IF THE AVERAGE PRICE OF WHAT YOU'RE GOING TO USE IN AQUA YIELD PRODUCTS IS ANYWHERE FROM TWELVE TO FIFTEEN DOLLARS PER ACRE, YOU CAN COMPARE THAT TO STANDARD FERTILIZER THAT WOULD BE UP IN THAT FIFTY TO SIXTY DOLLARS PER ACRE.

JIM ERICKSON, OF ERICKSON CUSTOM OPERATIONS, INTRODUCED AQUA YIELD TO THIS REGION IN 2018, AND HIS CLIENTS HAVE SEEN GREAT SUCCESS WITH IT. AQUA YIELD'S EFFICIENCY COMES THROUGH THE USE OF "NANO" LIQUID TECHNOLOGY. AQUA YIELD IS UNIQUE IN THAT IT CAN BE DEPLOYED, AS A DELIVERY VEHICLE, INTO MICRO AND MACRO NUTRIENTS AND OTHER CROP PROTECTION PRODUCTS A GROWER IS ALREADY USING. IT PROTECTS THEM IN THE PATENTED AQUA-YIELD NANOPARTICLE. THESE TINY PARTICLES PENETRATE ROOT AND LEAF TISSUE, IMPROVING ABSORPTION INTO THE PLANT. THAT MEANS YOU CAN APPLY LESS NUTRIENTS AND CROP INPUTS, EITHER IN FURROW EARLY IN THE SEASON, OR FOLIAR LATER IN THE SEASON.

Jim Erickson: IT ALL HAS TO DO WITH THE SIZE OF THE FERTILIZER THAT YOU'RE PUTTING DOWN INTO THE SOIL OR SPRAYING ONTO THE PLANTS. WHETHER IT'S OUR MICRONUTRIENTS, OR OUR NITROGEN, POTASSIUM, PHOSPHORUS, OUR ZINC OR OUR IRON, THAT WE'RE USING THROUGH THIS LIQUID TECHNOLOGY, THIS NANO TECHNOLOGY, FARMERS ARE BEING ABLE TO UTILIZE AND UNDERSTAND THAT A TWO AND A HALF GALLON CONTAINER IS GOING DOWN AT A RATE OF FOUR OUNCES PER ACRE. SO A TWO AND A HALF GALLON CONTAINER IS COVERING EIGHTY ACRES.

JIM KREBSBACH IS THE CHIEF REVENUE OFFICER FOR AQUA-YIELD. HE LOVES TO TELL GROWERS ABOUT THE GOOD RETURN ON INVESTMENT FROM AQUA YIELD.

Jim Krebsbach: WE CAN HELP IMPROVE DELIVERY OF NUTRIENTS AND OR CROP PROTECTION. HERE'S A LOT OF ISSUES WITH SUPPLY, WITH PRICE VOLATILITY. OUR TECHNOLOGY SHOULD GIVE YOU GUYS THE ABILITY TO STRETCH YOUR INPUT DOLLAR, STRETCH YOUR ACRES. WE AVERAGE ALL THOSE 650, ALMOST 700 TRIALS, AND WE'RE RIGHT AT THAT THREE TO ONE RETURN. SO IT'S NOT ALWAYS SAVING OR REDUCING, IT'S ALSO ABOUT HAVING A CROP RESPONSE.

AQUA YIELD'S NANOLIQUID TECHNOLOGY CAN ALSO REDUCE PLANT DISEASES BY MAKING FUNGICIDES MORE EFFECTIVE. THE COMPANY IS ALSO ROLLING OUT PRODUCTS FOR ORGANIC CROPPING SYSTEMS. THE USE OF NANO LIQUID TECHNOLOGY TRULY LETS YOU USE LESS AND YIELD MORE.

Jim Erickson: IT'S FUN TO SIT DOWN WITH PRODUCERS AND GO THROUGH THE DETAILS OF WHAT NANOTECHNOLOGY IS ALL ABOUT.

THIS IS ROSE DUNN FOR AGWEEK.

TO LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW AQUA YIELD WORKS, CONTACT JIM ERICKSON AT E.C.O. AT THE NUMBER OR EMAIL ON YOUR SCREEN.

STILL AHEAD, WE'LL TAKE YOU TO A MINNESOTA FARM WHERE THEY'RE STILL RAISING TURKEYS THE WAY THEIR GRANDPARENTS DID.

MINNESOTA IS THE NATION'S TOP TURKEY PRODUCING STATE, BUT FERNDALE MARKET IS DIFFERENT FROM MOST OF MINNESOTA'S TURKEY FARMS.

FERNDALE RAISES ITS TURKEYS OUTDOORS, WITH NO ANTIBIOTICS. BIRDS WILL BE OUTSIDE FROM APRIL, RIGHT UP TO THE BIG RUSH OF PROCESSING RIGHT BEFORE THANKSGIVING.

JOHN PETERSON SAYS THERE ARE ONLY A HANDFUL OF FREE-RANGE TURKEY FARMS ACROSS THE COUNTRY, THAT PRODUCE AS MANY BIRDS AS FERNDALE. IT MARKETS 150,000 TURKEYS A YEAR UNDER ITS OWN LABEL, AND SELLS THEM FROM A STORE ON THE FARM. THEY ALSO DISTRIBUTE TO ABOUT 75 STORES AROUND THE REGION.

PETERSON SAYS HE RUNS THE FARM THE WAY HIS GRANDPARENTS DID WHEN THEY STARTED IN THE 1930'S.

John Peterson: SO OUR BIRDS ARE STILL GROWN FREE RANGE, WE DON'T USE ANY ANTIBIOTICS OR GROWTH DRUGS OF ANY KIND, AND THEN ALL OF OUR PRODUCTS ARE NATURALLY PROCESSED WITH SIMPLE, CLEAN INGREDIENTS.

PETERSON SAYS THEIR SOUTHEAST MINNESOTA LOCATION, OUT OF THE MIGRATORY BIRD PATH AND AWAY FROM OTHER TURKEY FARMS, MAY HELP THEM AVOID THE AVIAN FLU OUTBREAK, BUT HE SAYS THEY ARE ON HIGH ALERT WATCHING FOR IT.

STORIES YOU'LL ONLY SEE ON AGWEEK.COM AND AGWEEK MAGAZINE THIS WEEK...

DRAIN TILE IS A COMMON CONCERN AMONG FARMERS WITH CROPLAND IN THE PATH OF CARBON PIPELINES. A TILING COMPANY HAS BEEN BROUGHT IN ON THE SUMMIT CARBON SOLUTIONS PROJECT.

AND BINA CHAROLAIS WRAPPED UP CALVING IN MUCH NICER WEATHER THAN WHEN IT STARTED IN JANUARY.

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.

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