Jonathan Knutson, Agweek Staff Writer
Local foods, usually defined as foods purchased within 100 miles of where they're produced, offer both potential and challenges for agricultural producers in lightly populated northeast North Dakota, according to a newly released study. Though local foods hold considerable appeal to many consumers and other potential buyers, significant obstacles hamper producers from fully meeting that interest, the study found. The study also reaffirms how important local foods are to the people who produce them, the study coordinator said.
Most of the Upper Midwest's soybean crop is harvested. The same can't be said of corn and sunflowers. Large amounts of corn and sunflowers remain in fields, though considerable progress has been made on soybeans, according to the weekly crop report from the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The report, released Nov. 18, reflects conditions as of Nov. 17.
Upper Midwest farmers continue to make much-needed overall harvest progress. But the harvest pace remains far behind what it should be. The weekly crop progress report, reflecting conditions Nov. 10 and released Nov. 12 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, found that at least some area farmers made meaningful progress in their often-delayed harvest.
Substantial harvest progress in the week ending Nov. 3 brightens the overall outlook for Upper Midwest agricultural producers. Even so, large amounts of crops, particularly corn and soybeans, remain in fields at a time when many Upper Midwest farmers normally have wrapped up their harvest. The weekly crop progress report, reflecting conditions Nov. 3 and released Nov. 4 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, found that farmers made gains in whittling down unharvested acres. Two examples:
With November nearing, some Upper Midwest farmers finally began making much-needed harvest progress, especially in Minnesota and South Dakota. But the overall harvest pace remains far behind normal, particularly in North Dakota. The latest crop progress report, reflecting conditions on Oct. 27 and released Oct. 28 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, found some reason for optimism.
The calendar says October. The Upper Midwest harvest pace says September. The weekly crop progress report, reflecting conditions Sept. 29 and released Sept. 30 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, or NASS, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, confirmed that the area harvest remains far behind schedule. In fact, some key harvest measures are even further behind than they had been, reflecting heavy, widespread rains in late September.
The already late Upper Midwest harvest will be delayed even further after widespread, heavy rains in the middle of September. Crop conditions also suffered from the excess moisture. The weekly crop progress report reflecting conditions as of Sept. 22 and released Sept. 23 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, found that some wheat farmers made some progress during the week before the heavy rains hit.
Normally in the middle of September, Upper Midwest farmers have finished, or nearly finished, their small grains harvest and are just beginning to harvest other crops that were planted later. This isn't a normal September. The area's wheat harvest remains well behind schedule, and corn and soybeans aren't nearly as mature as they should be.
The Upper Midwest 2019 crop season has reached awkward August, when the weather can never quite please area farmers. Ag producers want dry conditions to help small grain harvest, but also need rain to bolster other crops, particularly corn and soybeans. The paradox is especially true this year, with the region's wheat harvest well behind schedule and both corn and soybeans less advanced than usual.
Harvest has begun in the Upper Midwest. It's just getting started and it's not as advanced as normal, but it's finally underway. A fraction of wheat in North Dakota, South Dakota, Minnesota and Montana was harvested as of Aug. 4, according to the weekly crop progress released Aug. 5 by the National Agricultural Statistics Service, an arm of the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Wheat, corn and soybeans are the region's three major crops. Typically, wheat is the first to be planted and the first to be harvested.