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AgweekTV Full Show: Policy makers, USDA acreage report, Flags on Farms and an ag tech giant

This week on AgweekTV, we’ll visit with high profile policy makers as they gathered in Fargo to discuss the current state of the ag industry. We’ll take a look at the USDA acreage report and ask a market expert what it all means. Once again, we will show our Flags on Farms feature. Finally, we’ll discuss a North Dakota ag tech giant that has an easier way for farmers to get paid for their grain.

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This week on AgweekTV, we’ll visit with high profile policy makers as they gathered in Fargo to discuss the current state of the ag industry. We’ll take a look at the USDA acreage report and ask a market expert what it all means. Once again, we will show our Flags on Farms feature. Finally, we’ll discuss a North Dakota ag tech giant that has an easier way for farmers to get paid for their grain.

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WELCOME TO AGWEEK TV, I'M EMILY BEAL.

THE MUCH-ANTICIPATED USDA JUNE ACREAGE REPORT CAME OUT THIS WEEK. MANY FARMERS HAD TO CHANGE PLANTING PLANS ON THE FLY BECAUSE OF THE COLD, WET SPRING, SO THE REPORT CONTAINS SOME SURPRISES.

WITH MORE ON THAT, HERE'S ROSE DUNN AND A SPECIAL GUEST.

THANKS EMILY. WITH THIS CRAZY SPRING WEATHER, THIS REPORT HAS BEEN EAGERLY AWAITED. JOINING US NOS FOR SOME ANALYSIS IS RANDY MARTINSON FROM MARTINSON AG RISK MANAGEMENT. RANDY, WHAT STANDS OUT AT YOU, ANY SURPRISES IN THIS REPORT?

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Randy Martinson: YOU KNOW THERE WAS A FEW SURPRISES, YOU KNOW YOU LOOK AT THE NUMBERS, I ACTUALLY THOUGHT WE'D SEE A LITTLE LOWER SPRING WHEAT NUMBERS, A LITTLE LOWER CORN NUMBERS, AND HIGHER SOYBEANS. IT WASN'T EXACTLY HOW THE TRADE CAME OUT WITH THE NUMBERS, OR HOW USDA CAME OUT WITH THEM. SPRING WHEAT ACRES CAME IN AT ELEVEN POINT ONE, WHICH WAS JUST A LITTLE BIT ABOVE EXPECTATIONS. IT WAS LOWER THAN THE PREVIOUS YEAR. FOR CORN, ACRES WERE A LITTLE HIGHER, AND THAT SURPRISED ME. ABOUT SIXTY THOUSAND HIGHER THAN EXPECTED, ABOUT THREE MILLION LESS THAN LAST YEAR. AND ON THE SOYBEAN SIDE, WE DID SEE ACRES DRAMATICALLY LOWER THAN WHAT WAS ANTICIPATED. ABOUT TWO MILLION LESS THAN EXPECTATIONS, AND ONLY ABOUT ONE ABOVE LAST YEAR, SO THAT'S GOING TO BE INTERESTING GOING FORWARD.

SO FOCUSING IN NOW A LITTLE BIT ON THE GREAT PLAINS, UPPER MIDWEST, WHAT ARE YOU SEEING?

Randy Martinson: YOU KNOW, THAT ALSO HAD A FEW SURPRISES. YOU KNOW, WE DID SEE NORTH DAKOTA CUT CORN ACRES BY ABOUT HALF A MILLION, WHEREAS MINNESOTA INCREASED BY HALF A MILLION. SOUTH DAKOTA DECREASED THEIRS BY ABOUT THREE HUNDRED THOUSAND, SO WE DID SEE LESS CORN ACRES AS FAR AS THE NORTHERN PLAINS IN CONCERNED, BECAUSE OF THE COOL, WET CONDITIONS. BUT WHAT WAS THE SURPRISE CAME IN THE SOYBEANS, WHERE NORTH DAKOTA SURPRISINGLY CUT ACRES ONE POINT ONE MILLION. THAT WAS NOT ANTICIPATED BY THE TRADE. WE DID SEE MINNESOTA CUT THEIRS BY HALF A MILLION. LIKELY THAT WENT INTO THE CORN MARKET, AND SOYBEANS DID SEE ANOTHER TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND CUT IN SOYBEANS TOO, SO THAT WAS THE SURPRISE. ON THE WHEAT SIDE, SPRING WHEAT ACRES, WE DID SEE NORTH DAKOTA INCREASE BY ABOUT TWO HUNDRED THOUSAND OVER THE MARCH INTENTION, DOWN JUST A LITTLE BIT FROM LAST YEAR. I THINK THAT SURPRISED SOME OF THE TRADE BECAUSE HOW LATE WE WERE.

CAN YOU TELL WHAT THOSE ACRES WENT TO?

Randy Martinson: YOU KNOW RIGHT NOW, IT LOOKS LIKE WE'RE GOING TO SEE A LITTLE BIT OF AN INCREASE IN SUNFLOWER ACRES. WE EXPECTED TO SEE THOSE INCREASE, JUST IN NORTH DAKOTA WE'RE GOING TO SEE ABOUT ONE HUNDRED AND THIRTY TWO THOUSAND MORE. WE DIDN'T SEE AN INCREASE IN EDIBLE BEANS, THEY STAYED ABOUT THE SAME. BARLEY ACRES WENT DOWN A LITTLE BIT,SO RIGHT NOW IT LOOKS LIKE MOST OF THOSE ACRES WILL EITHER GO TO SUNFLOWERS OR THEY'LL GO TO PREVENT PLANT, WHICH THIS REPORT DIDN'T ADDRESS THE PREVENT PLANT SIDE.

SO DO YOU ANTICIPATE USDA WILL MAKE ANY REVISIONS IN THESE NUMBERS?

Randy Martinson: YOU KNOW RIGHT NOW IT DOES LOOK LIKE IT. YOU KNOW, THEY'RE NOT GOING TO GO IN AND RESURVEY, BUT THEY ARE GOING TO LOOK AT MORE INFORMATION IN THE JULY TIME FRAME, ACTUALLY RE-LOOK AT THE NUMBERS. AND IT'S LIKELY WE'LL SEE SOME REVISIONS IN THE NORTH DAKOTA, MINNESOTA, SOUTH DAKOTA NUMBERS IN THE AUGUST CROP PRODUCTION REPORT. BECAUSE OF LATE PLANTING, THERE WAS STILL FOUR MILLION ACRES OF CORN LEFT TO BE PLANTED. FIFTEEN MILLION ACRES OF SOYBEANS. SO THERE WILL BE SOME ADJUSTMENTS GOING FORWARD, BUT NOT UNTIL LATER SUMMER, EARLY FALL.

A LOT TO WATCH FOR THIS SUMMER. THANKS A LOT FOR BEING WITH US TODAY. RANDY MARTINSON, MARTINSON AG RISK MANAGEMENT.

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POLICY MAKERS GATHERED IN FARGO AT THE MIDWEST AGRICULTURE SUMMIT TO DISCUSS THE CURRENT STATE OF THE INDUSTRY.

A HOT TOPIC AT THE SUMMIT WAS THE WAR IN UKRAINE'S IMPACT ON AG AND THE RISK OF DEPENDING ON ANOTHER COUNTRY FOR OUR FOOD SUPPLY.

IN ADDITION TO BEING A NATIONAL SECURITY RISK, THE WAR HAS MADE INPUT COSTS GO UP SIGNIFICANTLY FOR FARMERS AND RANCHERS. HOWEVER, U.S. UNDER SECRETARY OF FARM PRODUCTION ROBERT BONNIE SAYS THE USDA IS LOOKING FOR WAYS TO LOWER THOSE COSTS.

Robert Bonnie: A lot of the tools we have at USDA are linked to price, they're linked to yield, versus the margin or input costs and so we have somewhat of a limited toolbox, but the better we do getting our programs out, whether it's finance, disaster, other things. the more we can support agriculture and that will help certainly, but also we're looking for ways to be creative.

BONNIE SAYS $500 MILLION HAS BEEN SET ASIDE BY USDA TO HELP DISCOVER WAYS TO PRODUCE MORE FERTILIZER IN THE UNITED STATES.

THE UPCOMING FARM BILL WAS ALSO A TOPIC AT THE MIDWEST AG SUMMIT.

NORTH DAKOTA SENATOR JOHN HOEVEN SAYS HE BELIEVES THAT RISK MANAGEMENT TOOLS, ESPECIALLY CROP INSURANCE, WILL BE OF THE UTMOST IMPORTANCE IN THE NEW FARM BILL. HE ALSO WANTS TO SEE CONSERVATION PROGRAMS THAT DON'T RESTRICT FARMERS AND RANCHERS.

Sen. Hoeven: They need to be farmer friendly. Don't tie our farmers and ranchers up in a bunch of red tape. They are out there on the land, they know better than anybody how to do it.

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MINNESOTA SENATOR AMY KLOBUCHAR SAYS THE NEW FARM BILL WILL TAKE BI-PARTISAN COLLABORATION.

Sen. Amy Klobuchar: I think everyone has realized that we have to do this together because right off the bat we lose certain votes, even in rural America by certain senators who won't vote for it. And because of that, we have to make that coalition and make it strong. We're always aware of that.

THE NEW FIVE-YEAR FARM BILL WILL BE VOTED ON IN 2023.

KLOBUCHAR WAS ALSO INSTRUMENTAL IN TRYING TO SOLVE A SHIPPING CONTAINER SHORTAGE. SHIPPING PROBLEMS CAUSED BY THE PANDEMIC MADE IT DIFFICULT FOR MANY AG EXPORTERS TO GET THEIR PRODUCT OVERSEAS.

PRESIDENT BIDEN RECENTLY SIGNED THE OCEAN SHIPPING REFORM ACT. THE BILL'S INTENDED TO HELP EASE SUPPLY CHAIN ISSUES AND CONTAINER SHIPPING BOTTLENECKS. KLOBUCHAR ACTED AS A DRIVING FORCE TO GET THIS BILL PASSED.

Sen. Klobuchar: So what the bill does, it says is if American farmers and manufacturers have things to ship out and they're waiting at the ports, you gotta take those things, you can't just export air.

S B & B FOODS OF CASSELTON, NORTH DAKOTA SHIPS FOOD GRADE SOYBEANS AND OTHER GRAINS TO INTERNATIONAL MARKETS. PRESIDENT BOB SINNER SAYS THEY WERE HIT HARD BY THE LACK OF SHIPPING CONTAINERS AND STRUGGLED TO GET THEIR PRODUCTS TO THEIR CUSTOMERS ON TIME.

SINNER SAYS THE LEGISLATION IS LONG OVERDUE, SO THE U.S. CAN BE A RELIABLE EXPORTER.

Bob Sinner: We have to have the ocean carriers willingness to reposition the containers to areas here because the world and, particularly Asia on soybeans, looks for us to be a consistent and reliable supplier. They like our product, they want our product and so we have to do better. And I think our government, you know, recognizes this.>

KLOBUCHAR SAYS THE BILL WAS A BIPARTISAN EFFORT.

THE NORTH DAKOTA ATTORNEY GENERAL SAYS A SALE OF LAND FROM CAMPBELL FARMS OF GRAFTON, TO A TRUST ASSOCIATED WITH BILLIONAIRE BILL GATES, IS LEGAL.

QUESTIONS HAD BEEN RAISED ABOUT WHETHER THE THIRTEEN MILLION DOLLAR SALE VIOLATED THE STATE'S ANTI-CORPORATE FARMING LAW.

THE ATTORNEY GENERAL'S OFFICE REVIEWED THE INFORMATION, AND SAYS THEY ARE SATISFIED THE "RED RIVER TRUST'S" CURRENT OWNERSHIP IS COMPLIANT WITH THE LAW, BECAUSE OF A LEASE-BACK AGREEMENT, UNDER WHICH THE CAMPBELL BROTHERS WILL CONTINUE TO FARM THE LAND. YOU CAN READ MORE AT AGWEEK.COM .

UP NEXT ON AGWEEK TV, A NORTH DAKOTA AG TECH COMPANY HAS A NEW PLATFORM FOR GETTING FARMERS PAID FASTER.

A NORTH DAKOTA AG TECH COMPANY IS TAKING ANOTHER LEAP INTO MAKING IT EASIER FOR FARMERS TO GET PAID FOR THEIR GRAIN.

BUSHEL IS A SOFTWARE TECHNOLOGY COMPANY THAT CREATES DIGITAL SCALE TICKETS AND CONTRACTS FOR FARMERS AND FACILITIES LIKE ELEVATORS AND CO-OPS. NOW, THEY'VE ADDED A DIGITAL PAYMENT PLATFORM. THE COMPANY UNVEILED BUSHEL PAYMENTS THIS WEEK.

CEO JAKE JORAANSTAD SAYS 90 PERCENT OF THE 200 BILLION DOLLAR INDUSTRY IS STILL PAID BY PAPER CHECKS, AND THEY WANT TO MAKE IT SIMPLER, AND SAFER FOR FARMERS TO GET PAID, WITH ELECTRONIC PAYMENTS.

Jake Joraanstad: THE FARMER IS READY FOR THESE KIND OF TOOLS. THEY'RE USING THEIR MOBILE PHONES TO DO BUSINESS, THEY'RE GIVING THEIR GRAIN OFFERS ON THERE, THEY'RE SIGNING CONTRACTS ON THERE. WE BELIEVE THEY'RE READY TO STOP GETTING THOSE PAPER CHECKS IN THE MAIL AND START TO DO AN ELECTRONIC PAYMENT INSTEAD AND IT WILL MAKE THE WHOLE INDUSTRY BETTER. TWO THOUSAND FACILITIES USE BUSHEL'S TOOLS IN THE U.S. AND CANADA, COVERING FORTY PERCENT OF ALL GRAIN TRANSACTIONS. RIGHT NOW, THE BUSHEL DIGITAL PAYMENT PRODUCTS ARE ONLY AVAILABLE IN THE U.S. TO LEARN MORE, VISIT BUSHEL WALLET.COM .

A LARGE NUMBER OF KANSAS CATTLE FELL VICTIM TO THE STATE'S RECORD BREAKING HEAT THIS MONTH. THE MAJORITY OF THE CATTLE THAT DIED WERE ON FEEDLOTS.

AJ: We had multiple hours of cattle comfort index of extremely high values due to the sudden spike in temperature

AJ TARPOFF IS AN EXTENSION BEEF VETERINARIAN AND ASSISTANT PROFESSOR AT KANSAS STATE UNIVERSITY. HE SAYS WHILE THE EXTREME TEMPERATURES WERE THE DRIVING FORCE BEHIND THE CATTLE'S DEATH, THERE WERE OTHER FACTORS AT PLAY AS WELL.

AJ: We have multiple factors that affect cattle with heat strokes and yes temperature and humidity are a piece of that, but wind speed and solar radiation are key players on the impacts on those animals. And when we take all those into account, actually we call it the animal comfort index, the cattle comfort.

ACCORDING TO TARPOFF, THE CATTLE COMFORT INDEX FOR THAT PERIOD OF TIME IN SOUTHWEST KANSAS WAS UPWARDS OF 126 DEGREES. WHILE IT ISN'T KNOWN EXACTLY HOW MANY CATTLE DIED, TARPOFF BELIEVES THAT DOESN'T MAKE IT ANY EASIER FOR RANCHERS.

AJ: In the long run, any loss is difficult, especially for our feedlot operators and employees, that day in and day out, working diligently to maintain the health and well being of those cows

TIM PETRY IS AN NDSU EXTENSION LIVESTOCK MARKETING ECONOMIST. HE SAYS THAT THE TRAGIC EVENTS THAT TOOK PLACE IN KANSAS WILL HAVE LITTLE TO NO IMPACT ON THE CURRENT CATTLE MARKET.

Petry: For those feedlots where that happened, it's devastating. You know, you could equate that to the calf losses with the blizzard in North Dakota, lost several thousand calves there and for those producers, devastating. But, you know, we have over 35 million calf crop in the US, so from the big standpoint it won't have very much effect on prices

Petry: From a supply standpoint, we are in excellent shape and get COVID behind us and hopefully we can get the Ukrainian situation straightened out here in the next few months or whatever and I think positive positive times ahead.

KANSAS RANCHERS THAT LOST CATTLE DUE TO THE HEAT QUALIFY FOR PAYMENTS THROUGH THE LIVESTOCK INDEMNITY PROGRAM.

JUNE FELT LIKE AN EXTREMELY WINDY MONTH IN THE NORTHERN PLAINS, BUT ONE EXPERT SAYS IT HASN'T BEEN EXCEPTIONAL.

DARYL RITCHISON, THE DIRECTOR OF THE NORTH DAKOTA AG WEATHER NETWORK, SAYS IF YOU LOOK AT AVERAGE WIND SPEED, THIS JUNE DOESN'T STAND OUT.

IT MAY SEEM LIKE IT THOUGH, BECAUSE OF HIGHER WIND GUSTS, AND THE BLOWING SOIL MORE TYPICAL OF MAY. BUT WE'RE SEEING IT LATER THIS YEAR BECAUSE PLANTING WAS SO DELAYED THAT MANY CROPS WEREN'T WELL EMERGED.

Daryl Ritchison: AND THE OTHER THING IS, YOU KNOW, WE HAVE A FEW HUNDRED THOUSAND ACRES PLUS OF PREVENT PLANT. AND SO ALTHOUGH THE TOP SOIL, THE TOP SAY QUARTER OF AN INCH IS NOW DRIED OUT, UNDERNEATH THAT IS STILL SO WET THAT YOU CAN'T GET EQUIPMENT OUT THERE.

THE GOOD NEWS IS, JULY AND AUGUST TEND TO BE THE LEAST WINDY MONTHS OF THE YEAR IN THE UPPER MIDWEST.

AHEAD ON AGWEEK TV, IT'S THE TIME OF THE YEAR AGAIN, TO FEATURE SOME OF THE FLAGS THAT PROUDLY FLY OVER FARMS.

COULD THE REGION BE IN FOR A PLEASANT FOURTH OF JULY WEEKEND?

HERE'S JOHN WITH OUR AGRI-WEATHER OUTLOOK.

IT'S THAT TIME OF YEAR, ONCE AGAIN, FOR OUR POPULAR "FLAGS ON FARMS" FEATURE. EACH YEAR MIKKEL PATES KEEPS AN EYE OUT FOR PATRIOTIC DISPLAYS ON HIS TRAVELS AROUND THE REGION.

HE FOUND A GOOD ONE THIS SPRING AT ANDOVER, IN NORTHEAST SOUTH DAKOTA, WHILE SNOW WAS STILL ON THE GROUND.

THE 30-BY-60 FOOT FLAG IS PAINTED ON THE SIDE OF A FORMER ELEVATOR. IT CAME ABOUT IN 2017, WHEN ORGANIZERS OF THE ANNUAL JAMES VALLEY STEAM SHOW WANTED TO CALL ATTENTION TO THE SHOW.

SO THEY ASKED SCOTT HANLON, WHO OWNS THE ELEVATOR, IF THEY COULD HANG A FLAG FROM THE COMPANY'S 60-FOOT EXCAVATOR. BUT HANLON WAS WORRIED ABOUT THE LIABILITY OF HAVING A FLAG HIGH UP ON A PIECE OF EQUIPMENT. HE WANTED A FLAG THAT WOULD BE THERE PERMANENTLY.

SO, HANLON AND SOME FRIENDS WENT TO WORK. THEY STARTED PAINTING ON A TUESDAY, AND HAD THE FLAG DONE IN TIME FOR THE PARADE ON FRIDAY.

Scott Hanlon: PEOPLE STOP BY, THEY LOVE TO TAKE PICTURES IN FRONT OF THE STAR. AND THEN I GOT SOME LIGHTS MOUNTED SO AT NIGHT YOU CAN SEE IT TOO. AND IT'S JUST INSPIRING. AND LIKE I SAID IT'S FOR US, OUR NATION, THE UNITED STATES. WE THE PEOPLE.

Ilene Helmer: WELL I THOUGHT IT WAS REALLY NEAT, AND I THOUGHT IT WAS AN ASSET TO THE COMMUNITY AND VERY PATRIOTIC.

THE ANNUAL THRESHING SHOW IS HELD THE WEEKEND AFTER LABOR DAY EVERY SEPTEMBER.

WE ALSO ASKED FOR FLAGS ON FARMS PHOTOS FROM OUR AGWEEK VIEWERS AND READERS.

JEFF CHANDLER SENT US THIS GOOD LOOKING SHOT FROM MEMORIAL DAY OF A FLAG HE PUT ON HIS BARN IN NORTH CAROLINA.

ALONG WITH "OLD GLORY," DUANE AND JAN DeKREY FLY MULTIPLE FLAGS ON THEIR FARM NEAR CARRINGTON, NORTH DAKOTA, INCLUDING THE DUTCH AND NORWEGIAN FLAGS FOR THEIR HERITAGE.

MONTE MARTIN SENT US A PICTURE OF HIS FLAG AND A VERY OLD WOODEN WAGON TRAILER ON HIS PROPERTY IN EAST FAIRVIEW, NORTH DAKOTA, RIGHT ON THE BORDER WITH MONTANA.

DAVID HANKEY SENT US THIS ONE OF HIS STARS AND STRIPES FLYING ABOVE A METAL BISON ON HIS FARM NEAR PARK RIVER, NORTH DAKOTA.

YOU CAN SEE MUCH MORE COMING UP IN THE NEXT AGWEEK MAGAZINE, OR AT AGWEEK.COM .

STILL AHEAD, SMALL FARMERS GET A BIG BOOST IN SOUTHEAST MINNESOTA.

THE VILLAGE AGRICULTURAL COOPERATIVE IN ROCHESTER, MINNESOTA IS A PLACE FOR SMALL FARMERS TO GET STARTED....

AND IT'S SO POPULAR IT'S EXPANDING ITS EXISTING FARMING LOCATION, AND ADDING A NEW ONE. AND IT'S ADDING A MARKET WHERE MEMBERS WILL SELL THEIR PRODUCE. THE DIRECTOR SAYS THE VILLAGE HAS GROWN FROM SUPPORTING 160 FAMILIES LAST YEAR, TO MORE THAN 200 THIS YEAR. SO THEY ARE LOOKING TO RAISE ABOUT $60,000 FOR EXPANSION, TO ADD WATER LINES, AND OTHER INFRASTRUCTURE NEEDS LIKE SHEDS AND STORAGE.

Amanda Nigon-Crowley: YOU KNOW, WE HELP THEM WITH A LOT OF THINGS THAT CAN MAKE FARMING UNATTAINABLE FOR PEOPLE, LIKE BRINGING IN THE LARGE EQUIPMENT IN THE SPRING AND FALL AND PROVIDING WATER AND SOME OF THOSE BASIC NEEDS WHICH CAN REALLY ADD UP FOR SMALL FARMERS.

THE VILLAGE ALSO HAS A TWO-YEAR GRANT THROUGH THE MINNESOTA AG DEPARTMENT TO STUDY THREE DIFFERENT CROPS WHICH ARE STAPLES OF SOME OF THE MEMBERS' HOME COUNTRIES.

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

FARMERS IN THE NORTHERN PLAINS MUST WEIGH WHETHER TO REPLANT, AFTER JUNE WINDS BATTERED THEIR CROPS

AND BOB WORTH IS, AGAIN, SERVING AS PRESIDENT OF THE MINNESOTA SOYBEAN GROWERS ASSOCIATION.

WE APPRECIATE YOU WATCHING AGWEEK TV.

REMEMBER TO CHECK US OUT DAILY ON FACEBOOK, TWITTER AND INSTAGRAM, TO KEEP UP ON ALL YOUR AG NEWS. HAVE A GREAT WEEK.

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