agriculture

CAFNR / https://www.flickr.com/photos/cafnr/10580373474/

There's a better-than-expected outlook for Indiana agriculture in a report out this week on what would happen if Congress ratifies the Trans-Pacific Partnership.

The TPP is President Obama's big trade deal to reduce tariffs and open new markets with Pacific Rim countries. Congress could vote on it this year, and asked for this forecast from the U.S. International Trade Commission as part of that debate.

White County CAFO Rule Would Join Patchwork Of Regulations

May 12, 2016
Annie Ropeik/Indiana Public Broadcasting

White County is on its way to passing the state's first rule for protecting a waterway from big livestock farms. It's designed to shield the Tippecanoe River Basin and its residents from pollution and farm odors.

Cause For 'Concern' As Corn Planting Slows

May 9, 2016
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Hoosier farmers didn't make much progress planting corn in the past week, after a strong early start -- and they're running out of time to get the state's signature crop in the ground.

Heavy spring rainfall didn't stop Indiana farmers from planting twice as much corn by the start of May as they had in 2015. They were on their way to planting a projected 2.6 percent more acres of corn than last year, despite a glut of the crop worldwide.

Josh Delp/ https://www.flickr.com/photos/repoman/3891445356/

The state Department of Agriculture is looking for new ways to make Indiana specialty crops competitive.

They'll divide more than $380,000 among research and marketing projects for fruit, veggies and more. The federal money comes from the USDA’s specialty crop block grant program.

 

kov-A-c / https://www.flickr.com/photos/yovac/14427821648

Freezing temperatures this week are concerning Purdue University agricultural specialists.

Peaches, grapes and wheat are especially vulnerable right now. Greg Bossaer, assistant program leader for agriculture and natural resources at Purdue Extension, says it’s possible that prolonged freezing temperatures could decrease the supply or increase the price of affected crops.

“The jury’s still out here, and it’s probably going to depend on these next few evenings,” he says.

David Cornwell/https://www.flickr.com/photos/dave_cornwell/3818629571

The USDA is estimating that American farmers may plant more corn this summer than they have in years.

 

But with the news that China will begin selling off its huge corn stockpiles, economists say prices could suffer.

Indiana accounts for 2.6 percent of the national increase. Purdue University agricultural economist Chris Hurt says the state increase came from fields that went unplanted last summer due to floods.

Sarah Fentem / WBAA

A lot of places have claimed to be the so-called “Shrimp capital of the world,” including Brunswick, Georgia, Morgan City, Louisiana, and, most recently, Mazatlán, Mexico.

More than 2000 miles north of Mazatlán, though, shrimp farmers in Indiana are working to add the Hoosier State to that list. The state is home to a growing number of what are known as “inland shrimp farms.”

Buttery Crop Goes Pop

Feb 5, 2016
Ingrid Taylar / https://www.flickr.com/photos/taylar/

After riding high for a few years on a wave of butter-flavored prosperity, Indiana’s popcorn production dropped by more than a quarter last year.

In 2014, Hoosier farmers planted and harvested more popcorn than they ever had before, producing more than 430 million pounds of the stuff. But last year, they produced only 310 million pounds.

Greg Matli, a statistician for the US Department of Agriculture’s Indiana field office, says Indiana popcorn became a victim of its own bounty.

Jessica Reeder / https://www.flickr.com/photos/jessicareeder/

Since Saturday, there have been no new cases in the Dubois County avian flu outbreak. The investigation area was expanded an additional 6 miles from the origin with additional testing for birds within that radius.

As of Tuesday evening, a spokesperson for Indiana’s Joint Information Center confirmed that approximately 413,000 birds have been, or are in the process of being euthanized. Of the birds, about 62 percent are turkeys. The rest are chickens that, while not infected, were considered to be in “dangerous contact” with an infected turkey flock.

Farmers' Confidence Index At All-Time Low

Jan 11, 2016
Robert S. Donovan / https://www.flickr.com/photos/booleansplit/

The latest Farmer’s Confidence Index is the lowest it’s ever been thanks to hardships due to the global economic slowdown.

After years of growth and plenty, farmers across the state are suffering at the hands of a down-turned market. Grain prices—the price per bushel of corn and soybeans—have collapsed, and the costs to plant and harvest have stayed the same.

Professor of agricultural economics at Purdue University Craig Dobbins says that leaves a lot of Midwestern farmers in an untenable position.

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