In The News

Nov 2021

Nov 30, 2021

NCGA: Remember to Submit Ballot for FSA Committee Positions

Key Issues:Farm Policy

NCGA reminds corn growers that the deadline is approaching to submit ballots for the Farm Service Agency (FSA) county committee elections. Voters should return their ballots to their FSA county office by Monday, Dec. 6. Those wishing to mail-in ballots must make sure envelopes are postmarked by the ballot deadline.   Committee members represent local farmers at USDA and play an important role in shaping FSA programs.   Each committee has from three to 11 elected members who serve three-year terms of office, and at least one seat, which represents local administrative areas, is up for election each year. Newly elected committee members will take office on Jan. 1, 2022.   Eligible voters who do not receive a ballot in the mail can request one from their local FSA county office. To find your local USDA Service Center, visit farmers.gov/service-locator. Visit fsa.usda.gov/elections for more information. 

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Nov 23, 2021

As U.S. Court of International Trade Says It Will Review Amicus Brief on Fertilizer Tariffs, Farmers Call on Companies to Withdraw Petitions for Levies

Key Issues:TradeProduction

The U.S. Court of International Trade this week said that it will review an amicus brief submitted by the National Corn Growers Association and other ag groups in a case it’s considering on tariffs of phosphorous fertilizers imported from outside the country. But farmers, faced with severe shortages and high fertilizer costs, are calling on a major American fertilizer company to withdraw the petition that led to the tariffs.   “Executives at Mosaic can remove this financial burden by withdrawing the petition,” Edgington said. “We invite them to do just that.”   The U.S. Department of Commerce recommended in February 2021 that the International Trade Commission implement tariffs over 19% on imported fertilizers from Morocco after the Mosaic Company, which manufactures fertilizers used in the U.S. and abroad, filed a petition with the department seeking the levies. The ITC voted in March to impose the tariffs while adding similar levies on Russian imports.   CF Industries also...

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Nov 19, 2021

House Passes $1.7 Trillion Build Back Better Legislation, Allocating $82 Billion in Funding For Agriculture to Address Climate Change

Key Issues:Farm Policy

Bill Steers Clear of Harmful Tax Changes for Farmers   The House of Representatives voted today on a party-line basis to approve the $1.7 trillion budget reconciliation and spending bill, H.R. 5376, referred to as the Build Back Better Act.   NCGA worked with allies of farmers and rural communities in Congress to ensure that the bill did not remove important tax provisions that would directly affect family farms.   “Our number one concern has been proposals to remove stepped-up basis,” said Iowa farmer and NCGA President Chris Edgington. “That will continue to be our focus as the legislation moves to the Senate.”   The House version of the bill makes no changes to stepped-up basis, the current tax provision important to corn growers. Stepped-up basis and the estate tax provisions in the current tax code help protect family farms that are transferred from generation to generation.   In an acknowledgment of the role farmers can play in addressing environmental issues,...

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Nov 19, 2021

Op-Ed: American Farmers Face Crippling Prices at the Hands of Fertilizer Oligopoly

Key Issues:Production

Op-Ed published Nov. 16, 2021 | Farm Journal AgWeb   The following op-ed was written by Jon Doggett, CEO of the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA).   If you’re looking to make a killing off the stock market, forget about Amazon, you should invest in fertilizer companies.   While other corporations and firms are attracting public scrutiny for how their practices impact Americans, fertilizer executives are making out like bandits at the expense of the people who feed and fuel America. Let’s just refer to them as the Fertilizer Oligopoly.   What has the Fertilizer Oligopoly been up to? It is using the government to elbow the competition out of the way and taking over the American fertilizer market.   One of the most Machiavellian moves by the Fertilizer Oligopoly came when the U.S.-based company Mosaic, which produces fertilizers sold here and abroad, used severe weather conditions in 2017 and 2018, which reduced fertilizer purchases, to manufacture a crisis that it...

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Nov 18, 2021

NCGA: Proposed Rule on Waters of the U.S. A Step Back, Confusing for Farmers

Key Issues:Farm Policy

Today, The Environmental Protection Agency and the Department of Army released a proposed rule to re-establish the pre-2015 definition of “Waters of the United States” (WOTUS). The proposed rule would remove the Navigable Waters Protection Rule, which was finalized in 2020 and provided long-overdue certainty and clarity for farmers affected by the scope of WOTUS jurisdiction.   In response to this development, NCGA President Chris Edgington released the following statement:   “We are extremely disappointed that this administration is taking us backward by removing a rule that has provided certainty for farmers who are working to feed and power America.”   "NCGA will continue to work with the agencies and advocate for a WOTUS definition that provides farmers clarity about their obligations under the Clean Water Act."  

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Nov 18, 2021

NCGA Urges EPA to Issue Delayed Renewable Fuel Standard Volumes

Key Issues:Ethanol

The Environmental Protection Agency issued a proposal today to further extend Renewable Fuel Standard compliance deadlines for 2019 and later because the agency has yet to propose and finalize 2021 and 2022 RFS volume requirements.   National Corn Growers Association President Chris Edgington made the following statement on the proposal:   “Through this year, we’ve heard from EPA that its intent is to uphold the law and put the RFS back on track following the waiver abuse of recent years. With 2022 just around the corner, EPA has yet to propose RFS volumes for the coming year, adding uncertainty to the renewable fuels marketplace. Rather than prolong the uncertainty, we urge the EPA to follow the statute by issuing RFS volumes that continue to provide for 15 billion gallons of ethanol. This will allow consumers to take advantage of the economic and environmental benefits of clean, renewable fuel like ethanol, which lowers fuel prices for drivers today.”

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Nov 18, 2021

Harvest time and NCGA's Annual Photo Contest are Coming to a Close

Each year growing season kicks off the National Corn Growers Association’s (NCGA) annual online photo contest Fields-of-Corn.com. The entry period is coming to an end at the stroke of midnight CST on November 30, 2021.   Photographers compete for 26 cash prizes across 8 categories – two individuals will receive $500 grand prizes.   Voting continues through December 31. The winners will be announced in January.   You can learn more about the contest, review the rules and submit your photos today at Fields-of-Corn.com.   Open to all, NCGA invites amateur and professional photographers alike to help tell the story of farming field corn in America through the Fields-of-Corn Photo Contest. NCGA seeks high-resolution photos of corn growth from seed to harvest and the families that grow it. 

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Nov 17, 2021

Pollinator Habitat – If You Plant It, They Will Come!

Key Issues:Pollinators

Since 1957, NCGA has stayed true to its mission of creating and increasing opportunities for corn growers throughout the United States. As part of this mission, our efforts across the sustainability sector have made waves for the advancement of land, water, and energy uses.   Taking our commitment to environmental sustainability one step further, NCGA has recently partnered with Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever – the nation’s leading charities for upland wildlife habitat conservation – to provide our members with direct complimentary conservation planning services for pollinator habitat outcomes in Iowa, Illinois, Indiana and Ohio.   Pollinator health is one of the leading sustainability issues in twenty-first-century agriculture. As public interest in pollinator health continues to increase, stakeholders in this discussion – our members and producers nationwide – have a critical role to play for implementation. By partnering with Pheasants Forever and Quail Forever, NCGA...

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Nov 16, 2021

NCGA Congratulates Robert Bonnie on Senate Confirmation

The National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) today congratulated Robert Bonnie for receiving Senate confirmation to serve as Under Secretary for Farm Production and Conservation with the Department of Agriculture. In response to the development, NCGA President Chris Edgington made the following statement:   “As production agriculture continues to face multiple challenges from climate to markets, Mr. Bonnie will play an important role in responding to farmer needs. Having previously served as the Under Secretary for Natural Resources and Environment, he has experience working with a variety of stakeholders and overseeing important USDA agencies. These experiences, his commitment to bipartisanship, along with his ongoing work with farmers, ranchers, and conservationists, are all reasons NCGA looks forward to working with Robert Bonnie in his new role.”    

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Nov 16, 2021

NCGA: EPA Didn’t Use Best Available Data in Popular Herbicides Used by Farmers

Key Issues:Farm PolicyProduction

NCGA said today that the EPA did not use the best available science and data in the recently released endangered species biological evaluations for glyphosate, atrazine, and simazine, and, as a result, EPA’s final assessment for these chemistries vastly inflate the number of species and habitats found likely to be adversely affected.   “The assumptions EPA made in drafting this biological evaluation are not based on the real-world use of these products,” said Iowa farmer and NCGA President Chris Edgington. “It vastly overestimated the volume of herbicide farmers use and instead relied on inflated levels that resulted in this evaluation.”   In its evaluation, which was released on Friday and conducted as part of the Endangered Species Act, EPA looked at the effects of glyphosate, atrazine and simazine on endangered species when used at the highest legal limits rather than at levels typically used by farmers. EPA’s determination is also based on the assumption that the...

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Nov 15, 2021

Finish Strong This Harvest – Submit NCYC Yield Results Today

As farmers across the country wrap up harvest, NCGA reminds them of one important step for many – submitting yield results for contest entries in the 2021 National Corn Yield Contest. Only days remain to complete this important task as all harvest results must be submitted by November 30 to be included in the 2021 rankings.   The contest winners will be announced on December 15.   Enter your harvest results online, click here.   NCGA challenges you to take advantage of this opportunity to explore new ideas and production technologies while gleaning knowledge to enhance your future yield potential. Winners will receive national recognition in publications, such as the NCYC Corn Yield Guide, as well as other awards from participating sponsoring seed, chemical and crop protection companies. State winners will be honored at Commodity Classic in New Orleans, Louisiana at the NCYC Breakfast, and national winners receive awards at the evening Awards Banquet.   Contact NCYC at...

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Nov 15, 2021

Registration & Housing Now Open for 2022 Commodity Classic in New Orleans

Registration and housing for the 2022 Commodity Classic is now open. America’s largest farmer-led agricultural and educational experience will be held Thursday, March 10 through Saturday, March 12 in New Orleans, LA.   To register, reserve hotel rooms, sign up for email updates, and register for optional tours in and around New Orleans, visit CommodityClassic.com. A list of exhibiting companies, a map of the trade show floor, and the registration brochure can also be found online.   Early discounts on registration end Jan. 21, 2022.   Commodity Classic is excited to bring the agriculture industry together again in-person for the annual showcase of ag technology, crop production science, marketing intelligence, and farm innovation.   Commodity Classic features a robust schedule of over 50 educational sessions, a huge trade show with over 350 exhibitors featuring the latest technology, equipment and innovation, top-notch entertainment, inspiring speakers, unique tours, and...

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Nov 9, 2021

Allen-Tully Appointed to USDA’s NAREEE Advisory Board

Key Issues:Sustainability

On October 28, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the appointment of 14 members to the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics (NAREEE) Advisory Board. Eight members are new appointments, and six members are reappointments.   Of those new appointments, one was Dr. Dana Allen-Tully.  She serves as Minnesota Corn Grower Association treasurer and NCGA Sustainable Ag Research Action Team (SARAT) vice chair.  Additionally, Dr. Allen-Tully serves as the Dairy and Nutrition manager for the Gar-Lin Dairy Farm. Her studies included animal science with a Ph.D. in ruminant nutrition.    “SARAT has had the privilege of Dana’s leadership and knowledge.  Her voice will continue to play an instrumental role in elevating corn grower voices, and her appointment to the NAREEE Advisory Board is well-deserved,” said NCGA Research and Productivity Director Robyn Allscheid.  “NCGA is a grassroots organization, and Dana’s new role will continue to help...

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Nov 8, 2021

National STEM Day – Celebrate Science!

November 8 is the unofficial holiday that celebrates science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) education throughout the United States. Need any ideas for how you can inspire young minds for agricultural science? We’ve got you covered!   Find activities and lessons on biotechnology, biofuels, water quality, soil and sustainability by visiting the Nourish the Future's (NTF) curriculum page.    4-H’s STEM and Agriculture programs cover topics not limited to Engineering & Technology; Environmental Science & Alternative energy; and Plant & Animal Science.   For younger readers, check out Kansas Corn STEM’s book, “We Grow Corn.”  There are additional activities, videos and resources to help with corn-centric hands-on learning.   Texas Corn Producers also have a collection of Educational Resources to keep K-5 students engaged and learning about the world of agriculture.   For older students, broaden their horizons in career pathways with a tour of

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Nov 6, 2021

NCGA Praises Passage of Bipartisan Infrastructure Legislation Important to Farmers, Rural Communities

Key Issues:Transportation and Infrastructure

The House of Representatives voted 228 to 206 Friday night to approve the bipartisan infrastructure package, which the Senate passed in August by a vote of 69 to 30, clearing the way for legislation to become law.   The Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act includes funding important to corn growers, including $17.3 billion for the nation’s ports and inland waterways and $2 billion specifically for rural broadband access. New spending in the bill is paid for through unused Covid relief funds, bonds and extensions of various government fees, and the bill does not include tax increases for individuals or farms.   “We are pleased to see the House act on this legislation which was developed in a bipartisan manner and allocates funding for initiatives that are extremely important to corn growers and rural America,” said NCGA President Chris Edgington. “This is a once in a generation infrastructure investment that will help farmers for years to come.”    As 60% of corn exports...

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Nov 4, 2021

NCGA Staff Member Named to National Waterways Foundation

A National Corn Growers Association staff member was recently elected to a national organization focused on the inland waterways system.   Anne Thompson, who has served as director of PAC and political strategy at NCGA since January of 2020, was elected as a trustee for the National Waterways Foundation. Her three-year term will begin immediately. “Our members stand to benefit from Anne’s involvement with the foundation,” said NCGA Vice President of Public Policy, Brooke Appleton. “Anne understands the importance of our nation’s inland waterways system to the ability of our members to remain internationally competitive, and she has a deep understanding of the types of data policymakers need to see as they are considering laws and regulations impacting the inland waterways.”   The foundation’s focus is on research addressing public policy issues related to America's inland waterways system. The waterways are of great importance to the agriculture sector, which relies heavily on...

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Nov 3, 2021

NCGA Applauds New Agreement to Lift E.U. Tariffs on U.S. Corn

Key Issues:Trade

On the sidelines of the Group of 20 Summit this past weekend, European Union officials and the Biden administration brokered a deal that will ease tariffs on E.U. steel and aluminum imports into the U.S. while eliminating retaliatory duties from the E.U. on several U.S. goods, including U.S. Corn.     “This is an important step for America’s corn farmers and a step toward restoring our trading relationship with the European Union,” said NCGA President Chris Edgington. “We were dragged into a trade dispute that did not involve us, and we are highly appreciative of the Biden administration for this development.”     In May of this year, the Biden administration announced the start of discussions with the E.U. to address global steel and aluminum excess capacity, which originally prompted the U.S. to apply tariffs on European steel and aluminum imports under the authority of Section 232. This action was met by the E.U. imposing retaliatory tariffs on U.S. imports, including a...

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Nov 1, 2021

U.S. Farmers Report Concerns of Shortages, Crippling Prices Due to Tariffs on Fertilizers, NCGA and Other Ag Groups Tell U.S. Court of International Trade

Key Issues:Trade

The National Corn Growers Association joined four other agricultural groups on Friday in encouraging the U.S. Court of International Trade to overturn an earlier decision by the International Trade Commission, which imposed tariffs on imported phosphate fertilizers from Morocco. “Farmers are feeling the pain from these tariffs,” said Iowa farmer and NCGA President Chris Edgington. “We’re facing severe cost hikes on our fertilizers, and we are worried about fertilizer shortages next year. We desperately need the U.S. Court of International Trade to remedy this situation.”    The U.S. Department of Commerce recommended in February 2021 that the ITC implement tariffs over 19% on imported fertilizers from Morocco after the Mosaic Company, which manufactures fertilizers used in the U.S. and abroad, filed a petition with the department seeking the levies. The ITC voted in March to impose the tariffs while adding similar levies on Russian imports. As a result, critical sources of...

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