Farm Progress

7 ag stories you can’t miss – April 21, 2023

Catch up on planting progress, new right to repair legislation, Ukraine grain shipment bans and more!

Rachel Schutte, Content Producer

April 21, 2023

3 Min Read
wheat field, capitol building and cattle
Getty Images

Did you miss some news this week? We’ve got you covered. Here’s a collection of the top headlines in agriculture.

2023 planting season underway

In USDA’s latest crop progress report out April 17, corn planting progress reached 8%, up from the prior week’s tally of 3%. Texas leads the way with 65% completion, while Missouri is trending well above historical averages after making it to 30%. Soybeans are also a tick ahead of average at 4% planted, but seven of the top 18 production states have yet to make measurable progress. – Farm Futures

Grassland CRP enrollment open

The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced that producers can sign up for the Grassland Conservation Reserve Program through May 26, 2023. The program allows producers and landowners to continue grazing and haying practices while conserving grasslands and promoting plant and animal biodiversity as well as healthier soil. Landowners should contact their local USDA Service Center to learn more. – USDA

Colorado passes right to repair bill

Passage of the Consumer Right to Repair Agriculture Equipment Act made Colorado the first state to approve such a law. Colorado farmers will be able to legally fix their own equipment next year, with manufacturers including Deere & Co obliged to provide them with manuals for diagnostic software and other aids. – Reuters

6 things to consider about biochar

For thousands of years, humans have used biochar to amend soils to improve water-holding capacity and fertility. Today’s farmers, though, may also be looking to biochar to remediate other challenges around their fields and livestock facilities. Forest products specialist Kim Slezak shares six things farmers should know about the benefits and use of biochar. – Kansas Farmer

Deadly explosion at Texas dairy farm

More than 17,000 cows are dead and one employee was left in critical condition after a dairy farm explosion at South Fork Dairy in the Texas Panhandle on April 10. Texas State Fire Marshal investigators ruled the fire accidental, concluding the fire resulted from equipment failure which then ignited flammable liquids. Two other pieces of equipment identical to the one that caught fire burned previously on the farm, and the investigation continues.

Cattlemen respond to electronic ear tag proposal

In response to a proposed USDA rule governing the use of electronic ear tags on cattle and bison, NCBA officials emphasize the importance of their use to protect the cattle industry from foreign animal diseases. However, NCBA would like to modify some reporting requirements to keep cattle identification information confidential and strongly protected from disclosures. Learn more. – Farm Progress

4 countries ban Ukraine grain shipments

Hungary and Poland announced the halt of Ukrainian agricultural imports last weekend, saying that duty-free imports put their farmers at risk. The European Union slammed the moves over the weekend, saying “unilateral actions” were unacceptable and a potential breach of the bloc’s trade policy. Slovakia and Bulgaria later followed suit, prohibiting incoming shipments. – Bloomberg

About the Author(s)

Rachel Schutte

Content Producer, Farm Futures

Rachel grew up in central Wisconsin and earned a B.S. in soil and crop science from the University of Wisconsin - Platteville. Before joining the Farm Futures team, Rachel spent time in the field as an agronomist before transitioning to the world of marketing and communications. She now resides in northeast Iowa where she enjoys raising bottle calves and farming corn and soybeans alongside her husband and his family.

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