Tag: Ag Research

MCGA scholarship awarded to student using corn to create plastics

Center for Sustainable Polymers (CSP) Undergraduate Researcher Quentoria Walton is the recipient of the Minnesota Corn Growers Association Summer Research Fellowship, awarded to a student who has helped advance CSP’s mission to transform how plastics are made.

Entering her junior year at Tuskegee University in Alabama, Walton received the $2,500 scholarship following her participation in CSP’s summer undergraduate research program. In the program, she worked on a research project that uses sugar from renewable sources like corn to make high-value materials that perform as well as petroleum-based counterparts,

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Innovation Grant Spotlight: Brian Velde

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

The 2017 Innovation Grant Program is well underway, with the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) investing more than $250,000 in 23 farmer-led projects focused on conservation. Throughout the summer we will be highlighting ongoing projects focused on how to better manage nitrogen and protect water quality.

For 13 years Brian Velde of Wood Lake has varied the rate of fertilizer on his fields using 2.5-acre grid soil sampling to determine the fertilizer rates,

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Innovation grants from MCGA

Innovation Grant Spotlight: Jason Louks

The 2017 Innovation Grant Program is well underway, with the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) investing more than $250,000 in 23 farmer-led projects focused on conservation. Throughout the summer we will be highlighting ongoing projects focused on how to better manage nitrogen and protect water quality.

Previously we looked at the work of Brian Ahrens, who took a new approach to nitrogen application. Next up is Jason Louks, who combined his application of fertilizer with a new approach to applying fungicide – all at a variable rate.

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4-H bringing sustainable science to young ages

Starting this year, the 4-H Polymers program will be available to K-2 classrooms nationwide, introducing science in a way that piques curiosity for kids of all ages. This initiative is the result of combining the educational outreach of  4-H with the University of Minnesota’s Center for Sustainable Polymers (CSP), which conducts research to create plastics derived from renewable resources.

The curriculum, titled “Be a 4-H Scientist!  Materials in a Green, Clean World,” focuses on concepts like materials,

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Minnesota Harvest

The latest market for corn: Tires

The United States rubber industry, especially for car tires, has depended on petroleum to make its product since World War II, when supply of the rubber tree prevalently grown in Asia was no longer available to America. Researchers with the University of Minnesota’s Center for Sustainable Polymers are now working to again transform the industry by returning to a natural source for rubber – Corn.

Associate Professor Paul Dauenhauer and his team set out to use starches derived from a source like corn,

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American corn and ethanol find receptive market in Taiwan

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

The US grain harvest in 2012, which was smaller than expected, forced loyal customers like Taiwan to look elsewhere for the poultry and hog feed previously provided by U.S. farmers, causing U.S. share of Taiwan’s grain market to drop 40 percent.

Not taking the change passively, the U.S. Grains Council developed the Grain Quality Condition report, which informs markets like Taiwan on the quality of U.S.

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Researchers seek triple win with refinement of DDGS

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

With a few small changes to improve the nutritional profile of distillers grains, also known as DDGS, research scientists at the University of Minnesota hope to deliver a triple win.

A mid-protein, high-phosphorus animal feed, distillers grains are an ethanol co-product made from corn after fermentation. The enriched distillers grain these researchers hope to produce would deliver more nutrition, offer another co-product to increase profits for ethanol makers,

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Buffer near Montevideo, MN

Buffers: Here’s where we are at

One of the most important topics to farmers during the 2017 legislative session, the buffer law was created to protect state water resources from erosion and runoff pollution. While farmers agree with the intended outcome, many are concerned with various aspects of timing and implementation of the buffers.

At the Capitol, the House and Senate proposed legislation that includes delaying buffer law implementation, modified definitions of public waters and necessary buffer widths,

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2017 Minnesota Session

MN Legislative Update: Lawmakers return to full agenda

Minnesota State Legislators return to St. Paul on April 18 with a significant number of issues to address during the closing five weeks of the 2017 session. Leaders in both the House and Senate established earlier committee deadlines to better manage larger pieces legislation before the session is scheduled to end and to avoid the potential for a special session. As a result, several bills with impacts to the agriculture sector could be taken up soon.

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MN House 2017

Legislative Update: State budget proposals unveiled

Under the Minnesota Constitution, the State Legislature and Governor are responsible for developing a new state budget every two years. Budgets are crafted during odd numbered years, immediately following the previous year’s elections. The state’s fiscal budget year is July 1 – June 30, so the legislature and Governor have a real deadline, unless they are prepared to risk a government shutdown.

How well a state budget is developed and adopted depends in part on ideological differences between those who control the state’s House,

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