In The News

Mar 2021

Mar 31, 2021

President Biden Outlines Infrastructure Proposal

Key Issues:Transportation and Infrastructure

President Biden today unveiled his American Jobs Plan, a $2 trillion infrastructure proposal investing in a wide range of infrastructure areas. The White House describes the American Jobs Plan as “an investment in America that will create millions of good jobs, rebuild our country’s infrastructure, and position the United States to out-compete China.”   The proposal includes: $115 billion to repair roads and bridges $100 billion to expand high-speed broadband across the country $100 billion to upgrade and build new schools Investment in climate and clean energy infrastructure   Congress will ultimately decide and vote on, the provisions included in any infrastructure legislation. Discussions on Capitol Hill regarding an infrastructure package are currently taking place and NCGA is sharing corn farmer priorities with members of the House and Senate.   The proposal’s $115 billion to modernize 20,000 miles of highways as well as roads and bridges would target the most...

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Mar 31, 2021

Biofuels Coalition Welcomes Amicus Briefs in Supreme Court RFS Case

Key Issues:Ethanol

The Renewable Fuels Association, National Corn Growers Association, National Farmers Union, and American Coalition for Ethanol (collectively referred to as the “Biofuels Coalition”) thanked the states of Iowa, Nebraska, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota, Oregon, South Dakota, and Virginia for filing an amicus curiae brief in the Supreme Court today in support of the Coalition’s arguments in HollyFrontier Cheyenne Refining, LLC, et al., v. Renewable Fuels Association, et al. The Coalition also expressed its appreciation to the other biofuel and agriculture groups that filed amicus briefings in support of the biofuels industry.   HollyFrontier and other refiners are asking the Supreme Court to overturn the January 2020 ruling of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit in Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) v. EPA, in which the court found EPA exceeded its authority in granting certain small refinery waivers. Recognizing that “the renewable fuel and agriculture industries are the...

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Mar 30, 2021

The Future of Sustainability: Nourish the Future Participant Receives Grant in New Jersey

Key Issues:SustainabilityResearch

Sustainable Jersey for Schools recently announced the 34 New Jersey public schools and districts selected to receive Sustainable Jersey grants funded by the New Jersey Education Association (NJEA). Fourteen $10,000 grants and twenty $2,000 grants were distributed to support various projects, including outdoor classrooms, aquaponics food production, water bottle refilling stations, anti-bias training, school wellness programs, waste reduction, student green team capacity building and more. Christine Girtain, a teacher at Toms River High School South and Nourish the Future participant, received one of the $10,000 grants.   "The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) is proud to partner with teachers like Christine Girtain through our Nourish the Future program,” said Director of Research and Productivity at NCGA, Robyn Allscheid. “We know that her enthusiasm and passion for research and teaching will help inspire other teachers to think about how they can incorporate real plant...

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Mar 29, 2021

Farmers Share Sustainability Story with Food Industry Leaders

Key Issues:SustainabilityConsumer Engagement

More than 200 high-level innovators in the food and beverage industry explored the challenges and successes they face as they continually strive to become even more sustainable during The Future of Food USA through a panel featuring CommonGround volunteer Kellie Blair, who farms in Iowa, and National Corn Growers Association Corn Board Member Brandon Hunnicutt, who also serves as Chairman of Field to Market in addition to farming in Nebraska. The session, Farmer Perspectives: The Key Sustainability Challenges and Successes from the Ground, shared the farmers’ personal experiences adopting sustainability practices and sparked discussions on how business can support farmers to reach shared goals together.   “We focused on the farmer perspective during our discussion of sustainability on our farms, how business can help, and what successes we have seen.  On our own farm, and the farms of the other panelists, it seems we have some of the same challenges: weather, labor, defining...

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Mar 25, 2021

EP.17-Short Stature Corn and Other New Ag Tech, with Bayer Crop Science’s Brett Begemann

With planting season upon us, we continue our focus on agronomy for the month of March.   In this episode, we catch up with Brett Begemann, the Chief Operating Officer at Bayer Crop Science. He shares details about the new inputs they’ve got in their technology pipeline, what that means for the future of farming and how their role in the ag industry is evolving.   We also catch a bit of the March Madness and hear Jon Doggett’s secret for filling out his bracket every year.   Before joining Bayer, Brett served as President and Chief Operating Officer at Monsanto Company, where he led global efforts to connect farmers with solutions for growing better harvests. Brett worked for 35 years at Monsanto, holding a number of leadership roles, including Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer.     Direct Share TRANSCRIPTS   Brett Begemann: I think things are changing faster now than at any time I've seen them, and mostly for the good. And when things are...

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Mar 24, 2021

Biofuels Coalition Files Brief in Supreme Court Case

Key Issues:Ethanol

Today, the Renewable Fuels Association, the American Coalition for Ethanol, the National Corn Growers Association and the National Farmers Union, working together as the Biofuels Coalition, filed their response brief in the Supreme Court case HollyFrontier Cheyenne Refining, LLC, et al., v. Renewable Fuels Association, et al.   In the brief, the coalition argues in support of the challenged Tenth Circuit decision, which held that only small refineries that have remained continuously exempt from obligations under the Renewable Fuel Standard program are eligible for future extensions of the compliance exemption.   “We believe the Tenth Circuit got it right the first time, and we will continue to defend the court’s ruling and stand up for the farmers and renewable fuel producers harmed by the granting of these illegal waivers,” the coalition said. “We strongly believe the Tenth Circuit Court’s ruling is consistent with both the Clean Air Act and Congressional intent.”   The...

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Mar 24, 2021

Next Gen Fertilizer Challenge Recipients Identified for Phase Two Trials

Key Issues:SustainabilityProduction

The Fertilizer Institute (TFI), along with the International Fertilizer Development Center (IFDC), The Nature Conservancy, and the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), announced the organizations and products selected for Phase two trials in the Next Gen Fertilizer Challenges. Collectively, the challenges aim to accelerate the development of innovative fertilizer product technologies and to increase the use of existing enhanced efficiency fertilizers (EEFS) that maintain or increase crop yields and reduce environmental impacts to air, land, and water. The organizations partnered with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on the challenges.   “For generations, we’ve seen how innovation has shaped modern U.S. agriculture into the most successful and efficient production system in the world,” said Corey Rosenbusch, TFI president and CEO. “This public-private partnership represents the next generation of fertilizer technologies...

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Mar 23, 2021

New Report Details Connection Between Conservation Practices and Farm Profitability

Key Issues:Sustainability

Conservation’s Impact on the Farm Bottom Line is a new report from Soil Health Partnership (SHP) that details the financial impact of conservation tillage and cover crop usage among Midwest corn and soybean growers.   This project, done in collaboration with Environmental Defense Fund and the accounting firm K•Coe Isom, aimed to: Compare crop budgets for fields using conventional vs. conservation practices Identify benefits, opportunities and limiting factors associated with common conservation approaches, and Help farmers and their business partners better understand the financial dynamics of conservation practice adoption   Based on an analysis of farm operations, management practices and financial records, the project team identified three key takeaways:   Conservation tillage reduces operating costs, resulting in higher net returns per acre among study participants. Cover crops can be part of a profitable farming system, especially as experience with the practice...

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Mar 18, 2021

EP. 16-Inside the C-Suite with Corteva Agriscience's Tim Glenn

Planting season is almost here. So we’re digging in on the topic of agronomy this month, talking to the leaders of some of the world’s foremost providers of agriculture inputs.   In this episode of Wherever Jon May Roam, Jon catches up with Tim Glenn, the Executive Vice President and Chief Commercial Officer at Corteva Agriscience, about how they’ve navigated the roller coaster of the last couple years, what new technologies they’re bringing to bear, and what kind of barbecue they cook up in Alabama.    Tim has been in the ag inputs business with Corteva and its heritage organizations for 30 years, and shares insights to help growers maximize their productivity after a roller coaster couple of years in the ag business.       Direct Share Link   Transcripts   Tim Glenn: Twelve months ago, commodity markets were depressed, we had elevated stocks and we had a lot of market uncertainty. Things got to be very concerning about the health of our commodity markets and what...

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Mar 17, 2021

Senate Confirms Tai for U.S. Trade Representative

Key Issues:TradeFarm Policy

The U.S. Senate today confirmed Katherine Tai to serve as U.S. Trade Representative (USTR), overseeing the development and promotion of U.S. trade policy.   In her prior role as Chief Trade Counsel for the U.S. House Committee on Ways and Means, Tai was closely involved in negotiations between the House and USTR to reach an agreement on a U.S.-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) implementing bill that received strong bipartisan support in Congress.   For generations, America's farmers and ranchers have built strong trading relationships to help maintain a competitive edge in the global economy and bolster job creation across the United States. Today, exports are responsible for 33 percent of U.S. corn farmers’ income and more than 20 percent of the U.S. corn crop is exported annually when accounting for corn and value-added products like ethanol and distillers dried grains with solubles (DDGS).   U.S. corn exports for the current marketing year are on track to surpass...

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Mar 16, 2021

Consider Corn Challenge III Informational Webinar Scheduled to Outline Contest Parameters and Expectations

Key Issues:New Uses

Learn more about the Consider Corn Challenge III submission process and find out how successful winners have moved closer to commercialization by participating in the informational webinar scheduled for Tuesday, March 30, 2021 at 10:00 AM CDT. Consider Corn Challenge II winner Derek Wells from ExoPolymer will participate in the webinar to share his experience of the process and the benefits he’s received from participating in the Challenge.   “We’ve had very diverse and robust applications and winners from the previous two Consider Corn Challenges, and I am looking forward to seeing who is working on a technology that can utilize field corn as a feedstock for producing sustainable chemicals and products with quantifiable market demand,” said NCGA Director of Market Development Sarah McKay. “Corn is a versatile crop that’s affordable, abundant and sustainably grown. As society continues to be more interested in biobased products, we know we have the solution and that’s...

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Mar 11, 2021

Regan Confirmed to Lead EPA

Key Issues:EthanolFarm Policy

The U.S. Senate on Wednesday confirmed Michael Regan, on a 66-34 vote, to serve as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).   The EPA oversees implementation of the Renewable Fuels Standard (RFS), a top priority for corn farmers.   Following his nomination by President Bident, NCGA President John Linder said, “The National Corn Growers Association looks forward to working with Regan on issues of importance to corn farmers overseen by the EPA, most notably the Renewable Fuel Standard (RFS). The RFS was a game-changer for corn farmers nearly 20 years ago but previous administrations have failed to uphold the law and implement it as Congress intended. NCGA hopes to have an open dialogue with the new Administrator upon his confirmation and work together to uphold the RFS, reduce emissions through greater use of biofuels, ensure farmers’ access to crop protection products based on sound science and seek practical solutions to issues important to...

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Mar 11, 2021

Take Action Program Offers Farmers Herbicide Resistance Management Tools

Key Issues:Production

#Plant21 is just around the corner for many, and already in progress for some, and the excitement for a new start seems even more palpable this year after a trying 2020. While many are eager to get the planters rolling, setting your fields up for success, this year starts with strong weed control. NCGA supports the Take Action program to provide farmers with a variety of resources that make management planning easier before, during and after the growing season.   “Weed management has only grown in complexity in the past few years, and it will continue to do so,” says Gary Prescher, NCGA Production Technology Access Action team member and farmer from Delavan, Minn. “With so many considerations farmers must make each season it is important for NCGA to provide tools that make some of those decisions easier.”   One such tool is the popular Herbicide Classification chart, recently updated for 2021, which breaks down herbicides labeled for corn and soybean production by site of...

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Mar 10, 2021

American Rescue Plan to Provide Additional Relief Amid COVID-19

Key Issues:COVID-19Farm Policy

The U.S. House of Representatives today passed the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021 (H.R. 1319), providing additional relief to address the continued impact of COVID-19 on the economy, public health, state and local governments, individuals, and businesses. The U.S. Senate passed the legislation last week, and President Biden is expected to quickly sign the bill into law.   The Act includes $7 billion for the Small Business Administration’s (SBA) Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) and $15 billion for SBA’s Economic Injury Disaster Loan (EIDL) Program. Agricultural businesses have utilized both programs to ensure they can continue to operate during the pandemic.   Similar to previous COVID relief efforts, the legislation provides food assistance for those facing hunger through the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) food and nutrition programs, including extending the 15 percent increase in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) through September 30,...

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Mar 8, 2021

Commodity Classic Offers On-Demand Access To 2021 Special Edition Sessions

Farmers and other agricultural advocates who were unable to participate in the 2021 Special Edition of Commodity Classic can still take advantage of the more than 50 educational sessions that were offered during last week’s online event.  Every session is now available on-demand.   Registration for on-demand access is available through Friday, March 12.  Thanks to generous sponsor support, farmers can register at no charge.  The cost is $20 for all other registrants.   Once registered, you will be able to view any of the sessions on-demand through April 30, 2021.  Registration is available at CommodityClassic.com. A complete list of sessions is also available on this website.   Highlights include a keynote address from USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack, a conversation between the farmer-leaders of the four commodity associations that present Commodity Classic, as well as the ag chair of the Association of Equipment Manufacturers, and executive roundtables featuring top agribusiness...

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Mar 5, 2021

Special Digital Edition of Commodity Classic Concludes After a Successful Week

The 2021 Special Edition of Commodity Classic concluded Friday afternoon with a keynote address from USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack.  Vilsack’s comments put the final touches on three-and-one-half days of outstanding education, presentations from top agricultural experts and personalities, and networking between farmers and the companies with which they do business.   The online event took place March 2-5 and attracted nearly 6,000 attendees from 49 states and 24 countries, with more than 4,000 farms represented.  Commodity Classic, which celebrated its 25thanniversary in 2021, pivoted to a digital event this year due to COVID-19 restrictions.     “This Special Edition of Commodity Classic was truly special,” said Brad Doyle, an Arkansas soybean farmer and co-chair of the 2021 Commodity Classic. “We had more educational sessions and presentations than ever before.  It was great seeing the enthusiasm and engagement of thousands of farmers from across the nation and around the...

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Mar 4, 2021

Learning about Feeding and Fueling the World

Key Issues:Research

Over 30 science teachers from across the country participated in the first Nourish the Future: Feeding and Fueling the World, a workshop sponsored by National Corn Growers Association (NCGA). Using supplies mailed to them ahead of time, this group engaged in a variety of lessons to understand more about the science of food production and sustainable fuels.   Robyn Allscheid, NCGA Director of Research and Productivity, greeted the teachers and talked about NCGA’s support for education and how she got involved in this career. “We’d like to help students become aware of all the careers related to agriculture,” Allscheid said. “Helping students see what opportunities are out there in agriculture is important to bringing on the next generation of scientists and researchers.”   Randy DeSutter, a farmer from western Illinois, serves as the chairman of the Sustainable Ag Research Action Team (SARAT) for NCGA. He praised the teachers for their enthusiasm for learning, as evidenced by...

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Mar 4, 2021

Digital Edition of Commodity Classic Attracts Thousands From 49 States and 24 Countries

The 2021 Special Edition of Commodity Classic—delivered digitally—is attracting nationwide and worldwide participation this week.  As of Wednesday morning, March 4, the total number of attendees was approaching 6,000—with more than 4,000 farms represented.  Attendees from 49 states and 24 countries are taking part in the first-ever digital version of America’s largest farmer-led, farmer-focused agricultural and educational experience, which began at noon Central on Tuesday, March 2.   The online event continues through 12:30 p.m. Central, Friday, March 5. Registrations are still being accepted at CommodityClassic.com.  A complete schedule of events is also available on that website.   The remaining schedule includes several Learning Center Sessions, What’s New Sessions, an Executive Roundtable, and a program on dealing with mental stress on the farm.  The 2021 Special Edition of Commodity Classic ends Friday, March 5 with the Closing General Session featuring a live keynote...

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Mar 3, 2021

Explore the 2020 World of Corn

U.S. corn farmers showed stamina and skill in 2020 with a national average yield of 172 bushels per acre and 14.2 billion bushels of corn produced in the United States while facing a myriad of weather-related challenges.   To highlight these achievements and all they mean, the National Corn Growers Association delves into the facts about corn production, using a historical comparison in its newest edition of the World of Corn. This statistical look at the corn industry, both domestic and worldwide, features a wide array of information on corn production and usage. In addition to the traditional statistics guide, this year’s distribution includes a poster highlighting the many incredible ways in which corn makes our daily lives possible.   “Don’t call it a comeback. America’s corn farmers took some hits in 2020. A record 30 named hurricanes hit the Gulf Coast and Eastern Seaboard. Aggressive wildfires ravaged parts of the western United States. A derecho devasted cropland from...

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Mar 2, 2021

Steadfast in 2020

2020 Hindsight   None of us will ever forget 2020. The year started off strong with a string of policy successes, bottomed out in the middle and finished off strong as our markets began to rebound. Through it all, the National Corn Growers Association remained steadfast in our mission and delivered a series of wins for America’s corn farmers.    Click here to read about some of these wins in our 2020 Annual Report.

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Mar 1, 2021

USDA Secretary Vilsack Confirmed as Keynote Speaker for Commodity Classic Closing General Session

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack will provide the keynote address during the Closing General Session of the 2021 Special Edition of Commodity Classic, which is being delivered digitally March 2-5, 2021. The Secretary’s remarks will take place on Friday, March 5 from 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. Central.   “We’re thrilled to welcome Secretary Vilsack back to Commodity Classic,” said John Linder, an Ohio farmer and president of the National Corn Growers Association. “He always provides an experienced, deep-inside-Washington perspective. With so much going on in our nation’s capital that impact their lives, the audience will be eager to hear his thoughts on the top issues facing our growers such as trade, renewable fuels, and regulatory initiatives.”   “Secretary Vilsack has been a strong voice and advocate for agriculture, and we’re looking forward to his joining us once again at Commodity Classic,” said Kevin Scott, a South Dakota farmer and president of the American...

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