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CCFB News» October 2018

From the Farm Desk

10/08/2018 @ 9:00 am

PLANS TO REORGANIZE AG RESEARCH OFFICES (Washington Post) – The Trump administration is planning to overhaul two federal offices involved with food and agriculture research. Secretary of Agriculture, Sonny Perdue, announced that the Economic Research Service and National Institute for Food and Agriculture would relocate into the Office of the Secretary and out of Washington by the end of 2019.


WITH SOLAR AGREEMENTS, NO SUCH THING AS TOO MUCH INFORMATION (FarmWeek) Solar opportunities continue to pop up around Illinois, and Clay Electric Cooperative Vice President Ed VanHoose recommends gathering plenty of information if you’re thinking about pursuing an agreement.


(Photo courtesy of USDA)

“There’s a lot of information out there and a lot of information that’s sort of half there,” he said on the “RFD Today” radio program. “Both from the farm and small business perspective and even the utility perspective, there’s quite a bit going on in the state and we just have a lot of people searching for answers.” He met recently with the Clay County Farm Bureau in southeast Illinois to share information on the Future Energy Jobs Act.


One of the big issues for farmers to be aware of involves land leasing. Before signing a contract, he recommends doing a thorough background check on the company or agent you’re working with and also retaining an attorney. 


YOU ARE TERMINATED  ( – Looking to save his wheat fields from herbicide-resistant weeds, an Australian farmer developed a tool to tow behind a combine and destroy weed seeds – literally. Now, scientists at the University of Illinois and other institutions are studying the Harrington Seed Destructor to see if it can be a part of U.S. farmers’ weed-management plans. 


 TREASURER REMINDS FARMERS OF AG INVEST PROGRAM ( - Illinois State Treasurer Michael Frerichs continues to promote the state’s Ag Invest program, which aims to give farmers better access to capital in order to put a crop in the ground. Under the program, the state works with lenders to provide qualified farmers below-market-rate loans to start or enhance farm operations.


FEELING THE SQUEEZE ( – USDA projects net farm income will decline by $9.8 billion (13 percent) this year, compared to 2017, to the lowest level since 2009. And, while lower commodity prices are a key factor in the projections, another driver of the sobering economic outlook involves rising input costs and debt levels.


About From the Farm Desk: There are a lot of farm related news items that cross the Editor’s desk to share with area farmers and farm supporters. This collection of news briefs is gathered from both mainstream and agriculture media and is designed to keep farmer members and leaders up to date. The articles are not intended to represent Cook County Farm Bureau policy or positions.

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