In The News

Sep 2020

Sep 28, 2020

Engaging with the Companion Pet Industry by Promoting the Use of Corn in Pet Food and Packaging

Key Issues:Animal Agriculture

There are many benefits of using corn in pet food, but the opportunity to utilize the corn kernel doesn’t end there. Corn is also a useful ingredient for the packaging of pet food. The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) shared that message with representatives from 40 countries at Petfood Forum CONNECT.   “Being able to share our story and engage with members of the pet food industry to let them know the versatility of corn is important to growing and expanding our reach within the industry,” said Market Development Manager Michael Granché. “When you have conversations with attendees, you sort of see the light bulb go off, and they connect the dots and realize the variety of ways corn can be utilized.”   NCGA sponsored an educational video, Rethinking the Role of Corn in the Pet Food Industry, which was a part of the ePoster series during the event, showcasing myths, the versatility of corn, and the nutritional benefits of corn in pet food.   “Last year, the Pet Food...

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Sep 24, 2020

Next Generation Fuels Act Paves Way for Future of Renewable Fuels

Key Issues:EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today welcomed the introduction of The Next Generation Fuels Act, legislation to transition to a higher octane fuel in order to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and meet future needs of more advanced vehicles. Corn growers support a low carbon octane standard as a means toward boosting long term corn demand for clean, affordable ethanol.   The Next Generation Fuels Act, introduced by Rep. Cheri Bustos, D-Ill., recognizes the high octane, low carbon benefits of corn ethanol.   Establishing a new 98 Research Octane Number (RON) standard for gasoline and requiring that sources of additional octane result in at least 30 percent fewer greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions than unblended gasoline, will ensure the progress already made to lower emissions through cleaner renewable fuels continues. Through advanced engine design features that take advantage of this new fuel, automakers will be able to increase engine performance and significantly...

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Sep 23, 2020

Sign Up for CFAP 2 Available for Corn Farmers

Key Issues:COVID-19Farm Policy

The U.S. Department of Agriculture last Friday announced $14 billion in additional aid from the Commodity Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) to assist farmers and their customers recover from the continued financial implications of the COVID-19 pandemic.   Program enrollment is open through December 11, and producers can download application forms prior to visiting their local FSA office. Producers can also register to participate in a webinar scheduled for September 24 to learn more.   Corn is an eligible commodity under the row crop/price triggered commodities. CFAP 2 provides an effective payment rate of $0.232/bushel on eligible corn production. USDA has a specific resource website for row crops at www.farmers.gov/cfap/row-crops.   NCGA analysis projects a $59 per acre average revenue decline for the 2019 corn crop and an $89 per acre average revenue decline for 2020, compared to pre-COVID-19 projections. If realized, the 2020 crop year revenue would be the lowest corn...

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Sep 22, 2020

Setting the Table for Growth

Key Issues:Animal AgricultureNew Uses

The economic headwinds corn farmers faced heading into this year were exacerbated by the coronavirus pandemic. The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) is actively working to rebuild demand by exploring new incremental opportunities for America’s corn farmers. In partnership with AimPoint Research and our primary customer segments, NCGA is developing a short-term demand growth plan that sets the table for long-term success.   “Every day, our main focus is to drive demand and find markets for America’s corn farmers to ensure they are successful year after year,” said NCGA President Kevin Ross. “I don’t have to tell you, this year is unlike any other I’ve experienced in my career, which is why we have to think outside the box and deliver quick wins for corn farmers. That’s why we’ve engaged with AimPoint and our key partners to help us optimize our demand building efforts moving forward.”   The process of evaluating potential market opportunities started with an intelligence...

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Sep 21, 2020

NCGA Joins in University Dialogue on the Future of Food

Key Issues:Consumer Engagement

National Corn Growers Association CEO Jon Doggett participated in the first session of the Farm Journal Foundation (Hunger U) Online University Speaker Series. The virtual event  “Level Setting: The Global Food Value Chain Transformed” featured a panel, moderated by Roger Thurow of the Hunger Solution Institute at Auburn University, which included  Keynote Speaker Dr. Olga Bolden-Tiller, Ag and Environmental Sciences at Tuskegee University and National President-Elect of MANRRS, Western Growers Association President and CEO David Puglia and Director of the Food and Ag Policy Research Institute at University of Missouri Dr. Pat Westhoff.   In addition to thought-provoking conversation, panelists shared their advice with students looking to enter the industry after graduation. Doggett challenged these future leaders to believe in science, get out of their comfort zones and help find ways to get food that might go to waste onto the plate of people in need.   The three-part Town...

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Sep 18, 2020

NCGA Statement on Atrazine Reregistration Decision

Key Issues:Production

“Earlier today the EPA released its interim decision on the reregistration of atrazine, a product used annually on approximately 60 percent of U.S. corn acres. Atrazine has undergone years of scientific study and we appreciate the EPA recognizing that it is a safe and effective tool for weed control. Atrazine is instrumental in enabling the use of conservation tillage practices, which ultimately protect more soil from water and wind erosion, conserve moisture, reduce runoff, improve wildlife habitat, and limit output of labor, fuel, and machinery.  It is a critical tool in ensuring the long-term sustainability of U.S. agriculture. Today’s announcement, however, does not end the review process for atrazine as it must also undergo an Endangered Species Act review. As a part of that review, EPA must publish a draft biological evaluation of atrazine. NCGA will continue to work with EPA and hold the agency to its promise to use the best available research when drafting and publishing...

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Sep 18, 2020

NCGA Welcomes Additional USDA COVID-19 Assistance for Corn Farmers

Key Issues:COVID-19Farm Policy

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today said additional aid from the Commodity Assistance Food Program (CFAP 2) will assist farmers and their customers recover from the continued financial implications of the COVID-19 pandemic.   The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced $14 billion in a second round of direct support, including additional assistance for corn growers. The aid was authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act signed into law in March.   “It’s been a tough year for agriculture and there’s still a lot of uncertainty across the corn belt as we head into harvest,” NCGA President Kevin Ross said. “We’re doing all we can to get back on solid ground, but we can’t do it alone, which is why today’s announcement is a positive and welcome step forward.   NCGA analysis projects a $59 per acre average revenue decline for the 2019 corn crop and an $89 per acre average revenue decline for 2020, compared to...

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Sep 17, 2020

CommonGround Takes Cooking, Conversations to Kitchens Across the Country

Key Issues:Consumer Engagement

CommonGround hosted a virtual cooking class for consumers, made possible through St. Paul, Minnesota-based Cooks of Crocus Hill. Last week, more than 50 attendees from across the country welcomed CommonGround into their kitchens to learn about preparing great food from professionals and to find out more about their food from the women who grow it.   Two farmers involved in raising or growing of ingredients spotlighted for each of the three courses, shared their story with influential and interested consumers. Through an interactive discussion, attendees found out not just about cooking but also about farming and how to continue dialogue that is honest and open between the farm and their families.   With participants from California bloggers to DC-based leaders in food non-profits, the impacts of the event will continue to spread on social media over the coming weeks. Keep an eye out!   Thank you so much to all of the awesome state staff and volunteers who came together to...

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Sep 16, 2020

Upcoming Cattlemen to Cattlemen Episode on Sustainability and Next Generation DDGs Features Corn Farmers

Key Issues:Animal Agriculture

Beef and Corn: Working Together in a Sustainable System is the topic of the upcoming panel show on the National Cattlemen Beef Association’s series Cattlemen to Cattlemen on RFD-TV. Panelists will discuss sustainability practices on their farms, the benefits of next-generation feed products, how the ethanol industry has impacted corn and beef producers, and more.   “1.25 billion bushels of corn plus the majority of distillers grains goes towards feeding beef cattle,” said NCGA President Kevin Ross. “Adding corn into the cattle diet increases feed efficiency reflected in the rate of daily gain. It also promotes faster growth, reduces days to finish, and produces steaks with a higher marble score.”   One out of four bushels of added corn demand is due to beef and pork, with the beef industry providing $5.7 billion in corn value. DDGs account for nearly 8 percent of total domestic corn usage.   “It’s important for us to collaborate with our animal ag partners because they are...

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Sep 16, 2020

Peterson Effort to Address RFS Waivers Moves Forward

Key Issues:EthanolFarm Policy

The House Committee on Energy and Commerce Tuesday released legislation containing provisions of legislation led by House Agriculture Committee Chairman and Congressional Biofuels Caucus Co-Chair Collin Peterson, D-Minn., to provide transparency into the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) granting of small refinery exemptions (SREs), or waivers.   The Clean Economy Jobs and Innovation Act (H.R. 4447) would set an annual deadline for refiners to request exemptions from the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) and require EPA to publicly release the name of refiners requesting a waiver, the number of gallons requested to be waived and the number of gallons of biofuel that will not be blended as a result of the waiver. These provisions mirror the policies contained in Peterson’s Renewable Fuel Standard Integrity Act (H.R. 3006).   Providing more transparency to EPA’s waiver process will give farmers, biofuel producers and the public a clearer understanding of EPA’s justification for...

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Sep 15, 2020

Agriculture Organizations Tell Congress USDA Needs Tools to Help Farmers

Key Issues:Farm Policy

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today joined the American Farm Bureau Federation and more than 40 other agriculture organizations asking Congress to ensure the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has the tools necessary to help farmers in times of crisis. The group sent a letter to House and Senate leadership requesting they immediately provide replenishment for the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) through the continuing resolution. Without immediate replenishment, funding for farm bill programs could run out while farmers struggle against low commodity prices, natural disasters and the coronavirus pandemic.   “For decades, CCC has been regularly replenished to fund programs integral to the farm safety net that Congress has worked tirelessly to craft,” the letter states. “Producers count on programs like Agriculture Risk Coverage, Price Loss Coverage, Dairy Margin Coverage, Marketing Assistance Loans, conservation programs, and many others as they provide food,...

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Sep 15, 2020

Next Generation DDGs and the Potential for Corn and the Animal Ag Sector

Key Issues:EthanolAnimal Agriculture

Opportunities for new corn fractionation technologies at dry mills create value by further separating out the various components of corn to allow differential utilization of the subsequent product streams. Feed for animals is optimized by separating corn into its most valuable components.   Dried Distillers Grains with Solubles (DDGs) are a co-product of the ethanol production process and used 1.2 billion bushels of corn in 2019. DDGs are a feed ingredient for cattle, swine, poultry, and aquaculture, rich in protein, fat, minerals, yeast, and vitamins.   DDGs were never initially engineered, as they were an accidental discovery derived from the ethanol manufacturing process. As these next generation DDGs products become increasingly competitive in their nutritional composition, ethanol manufacturers have the opportunity to diversify their portfolio, plugging into newly created revenue sources. If an ethanol plant is experiencing a lull in liquid fuel demand, they could offset...

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Sep 14, 2020

NCGA: Denial of Gap-Year Waiver Petitions Positive, Pending Current-Year Waivers Yet to be Addressed

Key Issues:Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today welcomed the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) denial of 54 of 68 pending past-year (2011-2018) small refinery exemptions (SREs), or waivers, to oil refiners. However, 14 gap-year waivers remain under required review at the Department of Energy (DOE). The EPA also has 31 waivers under consideration for 2019 and 2020 Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS) compliance years. NCGA President Kevin Ross made the following statement:   “Asking for waivers for nearly ten years ago was a new low by the oil industry to undermine the RFS and rewrite history. Denying these petitions was the obvious answer and farmers are pleased to begin to move past this distraction. We thank our bipartisan supporters in Congress, including Senator Ernst, for their advocacy in upholding the RFS.   “While denial of these past-year waivers is obviously positive news for farmers and biofuel producers, we’re never going to have the certainty we need until the...

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Sep 14, 2020

Brazil Tariff Rate Quota for Ethanol Extended for 90 Days

Key Issues:EthanolTrade

After expiring on August 31 and a 20 percent tariff was temporarily applied to all U.S. ethanol, Brazil’s tariff rate quota (TRQ) has been extended for a further 90 days starting on Sept. 14. National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) CEO Jon Doggett joined Ryan LeGrand, President and CEO, U.S. Grains Council; Emily Skor, CEO, Growth Energy; and Geoff Cooper, President and CEO, Renewable Fuels Association in the below statement:   “The U.S. Grains Council, Growth Energy, the Renewable Fuels Association and the National Corn Growers Association believe the 90-day extension of the TRQ serves neither Brazil’s consumers nor the Brazilian government’s own decarbonization goals, especially while Brazil’s ethanol producers continue to be afforded virtually tariff-free access to the U.S. market. The extension falls during Brazil’s annual inter-harvest period when U.S. ethanol exports to Brazil are traditionally low, causing greater uncertainty for U.S. exporters looking to make selling...

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Sep 10, 2020

Brummette Joins NCGA Washington Office

Key Issues:EthanolNew Uses

Rosy Brummette has joined NCGA’s Washington, D.C. office as Manager of Public Policy for Market Development and Renewable Fuels. Brummette will play a vital role in NCGA’s efforts to expand market opportunities for corn and advocating for the organization’s ethanol and trade policy goals.   Brummette most recently served as a Policy Analyst for the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry under Ranking Member Debbie Stabenow, D-Mich., where she focused on biofuels, energy, agriculture conservation and climate issues. She played a key role during the 2018 Farm Bill, leading staff-level conference negotiations on the conservation title for the Senator.   “NCGA is pleased to welcome Rosy to our Public Policy team,” said Kathy Bergren, NCGA Public Policy Director, Renewable Fuels. “She brings a wealth of agriculture policy experience that will enable her to hit the ground running and play a key role in advocating for NCGA policy priorities.”   Brummette grew...

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Sep 9, 2020

Ethanol Coalition Welcomes Reports of ‘Gap-Year’ Waiver Petition Denials, Denounces Refiners’ Supreme Court Petition

Key Issues:Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), Farmers Union (NFU) and American Coalition for Ethanol (ACE) today welcomed news reports that President Trump has directed the Environmental Protection Agency to reject dozens of so-called “gap year” small refinery exemption petitions intended to circumvent the Tenth Circuit Court’s decision in RFA et al. v. EPA.   Meanwhile, the groups denounced CVR Refining and HollyFrontier Corporation’s last-minute request, filed late on September 4, for the U.S. Supreme Court to review the Tenth Circuit Court’s ruling. The decision in question overturned three improperly granted small refinery exemptions under the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS).   NCGA, RFA, NFU and ACE were the four petitioners in the successful Tenth Circuit Court case, in which a panel of judges unanimously found EPA abused its authority by granting small refinery exemptions to CVR Refining and HollyFrontier that were not extensions of...

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Sep 8, 2020

CFAP Sign Up Deadline is Friday

Key Issues:COVID-19

Farmers have until this Friday, September 11, to sign up for USDA’s Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP).   CFAP provides much-needed assistance to begin to help farmers and their customers recover from the financial impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic. The $16 billion program is intended to support farmers and ranchers, maintain the integrity of the food supply chain, and ensure Americans continue to receive and have access to food. As of August 31, the program has provided $9.44 billion in direct payments to farmers, including corn farmers.   Corn farmers have been significantly impacted by the coronavirus pandemic. NCGA analysis projects an $89 per acre average revenue decline for 2020, compared to pre-COVID-19 projections.   Farmers who have yet to sign up can visit farmers.gov/cfap to apply or can call the Farm Service Agency office at their local USDA Service Center.   Details regarding the second round of CFAP could be announced by USDA later this...

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Sep 3, 2020

Expanding Access to Higher Blends through Pump Infrastructure

Key Issues:EthanolHigh-Octane Low-Carbon

Building out the infrastructure needed for future mid-level blends of ethanol continues to be a priority of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA). Over the past three-years, NCGA and state partners have worked with Wayne Fueling Systems to produce and sell fuel pumps certified to deliver fuel containing up to 25 percent ethanol.   Thanks to this key partnership, NCGA has supported the sale of more than 50,000 new fuel pumps across the U.S., building out the infrastructure needed to support future mid-level blends of ethanol.   “This lays the groundwork for growing ethanol demand and moving the industry forward,” said NCGA Market Development Vice President Jim Bauman. “Corn farmers' support of NCGA’s multi-year fuel pump infrastructure program supports the introduction of higher octane fuels delivered by low-carbon, affordable, corn-based ethanol.”   NCGA also recently partnered with the Renewable Fuels Association (RFA), assisting fuel retailers in applying for the...

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Sep 2, 2020

Reaching our Animal Ag Customers Through the Cattlemen’s Education Series

Key Issues:Animal Agriculture

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) is the sole sponsor of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) Cattlemen’s Education Series (CES), engaging with cattle producers on production efficiency, profitability and sustainability. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, many grant-funded in-person events have been canceled, but fortunately, corn and cattle have been able to innovate new solutions aimed at connecting agriculturalists with the latest industry information.   “With many beef industry meetings being canceled due to Covid-19, producers like me are missing out on many of the educational opportunities presented at those meetings,” said former Nebraska corn producer and beef feeder Scott Schaneman. “However, the Cattlemen’s Webinar Series allows me to still be in the know with information that can help make my operation more profitable and sustainable. We appreciate the National Corn Growers for sponsoring events like these!”   So far this year, there have been 14...

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Sep 1, 2020

Post-Harvest is a Great Time to Establish Pollinator Habitat

Key Issues:Sustainability

Fall is the best time to establish a pollinator habitat for a couple of key reasons, according to Peter Berthelsen, with the Bee and Butterfly Habitat Fund (BBHF), which is supported by NCGA. So, if you are considering helping honeybees, monarchs and other pollinator species, your time is coming soon.     The first step in the enrollment process is to complete the Seed A Legacy program application form. Make sure to read and consider the complete Program Guidelines here. You can apply online or contact us at info@beeandbutterflyfund.org to request an application.   Dormant seedings when the soil temperature goes below 50 degrees work extremely well, he notes, because fall timing can offer a post-harvest planting window for farmers before things freeze. And it sure works a whole lot better than trying to carve out time during busy spring planting.   Many wildflower seeds also have a hard dormancy (a hard exterior). Freezing and thawing during the winter months crack the seed,...

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