Tag: Water Quality

More than 350 farmers became "Nitrogen Smart" this spring

A series of “Nitrogen Smart” sessions throughout Minnesota drew more than 350 farmers to learn more about a topic important to both farmers and non-farmers: managing nitrogen fertilizer more efficiently.

“Nitrogen is a hot topic right now,” said Brad Carlson, a University of Minnesota Extension educator who presented at each of the eight “Nitrogen Smart” sessions. “It was great to see so many farmers come out and participate. If you couldn’t attend,

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Minnesota Corn Growers are funding research efforts to help farmers better manage nitrogen fertilizer

Over the last nine years, Minnesota’s corn farmers have greatly increased their investment in research efforts to use nitrogen fertilizer more efficiently and effectively. Since 2007, 34 projects addressing nitrogen fertilizer management have been supported using funds from Minnesota’s corn check-off, a voluntary one-cent “fee” paid by corn farmers for every bushel sold to market.

Of those 34 projects, 22 are currently active and in progress.

“The goal of our nitrogen fertilizer research is to protect water quality and improve efficiency while maintaining productivity,” said Dr.

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A day to discuss the science of cover crops: The 2016 University of Minnesota Production Ag Symposium

Written by Jonathan Eisenthal

Cover crops are not always an easy fit in Minnesota farms. But more science is being done annually to help farmers see the benefit, and to find useful ways to manage cover crops to eliminate yield risks while maximizing environmental benefits.

Hundreds of graduate agriculture students and professors gathered last week at the University of Minnesota agriculture campus in St. Paul to hear about these latest scientific research findings.

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Legislative Update: Buffers, property taxes and Vikings linebacker Chad Greenway

Property tax relief for farmers continues moving forward, there are new developments with buffer legislation and a Vikings linebacker expressed his support for ethanol. All of that, and more, in this week’s legislative update, so let’s get right to it:

Buffers
Let’s start this legislative update off the way we start most updates: With news about buffer legislation.

The House had two committee hearings on buffer legislation last week, one in the environment committee and one in the agriculture committee.

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The Minnesota Corn Growers are expanding research into cover crops

With support from Minnesota’s corn farmers, the University of Minnesota (U of M) is set to kick off two new research projects focused on cover crops.

The new projects, funded by the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA), focus on the potential for cover crop mixes throughout the state to reduce nitrogen fertilizer in waterways and in tile drainage systems.

“Minnesota’s cool climate and short growing season makes using cover crops challenging in many parts of the state,” said Dr.

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Legislative update: Buffers, cover crops, pollinators and GMO labeling

The Minnesota legislative session is moving right along, including several items that impact Minnesota’s corn farmers. Here’s an update on a few items that came up last week and will be coming up this week:

State

  • A bill authored by Sen. Rod Skoe that would alter the new buffer law advanced to the Senate Environment Committee. It’s companion bill on the House side, carried by Rep. Paul Torkelson, is set to be heard on Wednesday in the House Environment Committee.

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Minnesota Corn Growers focus on taxes, buffers during Day on the Hill

With the legislative session currently in full swing, 22 grower-leaders from the Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) spent Tuesday, March 15 at the Capitol in St. Paul talking property taxes, buffers and other agriculture issues during MCGA’s Day on the Hill.

“Our top priority this session is property tax relief,” said Raymond farmer and MCGA president Noah Hultgren. “There seems to be bi-partisan support on this issue, so it’s important that we keep reminding legislators how essential tax relief is to both the farm and overall rural economy.”

Resolving the private ditch issue and clarifying other items on the new buffer legislation was also a prominent topic.

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Legislative session preview: Property taxes, water and transportation top list of agricultural issues

Written by Anna Boroff, MCGA Senior Public Policy Director

The 2016 Minnesota legislative session began this week and is scheduled to end on May 23. That gives lawmakers about 11 weeks to address everything from tax relief to transportation, water quality to a bonding bill, and probably a few issues that aren’t even on our radar at this time.

Oh, and there’s that $900 million state surplus…

Agriculture issues
Before the sessions kicks into high gear,

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Dismissed by the Pioneer Press: Making farmers' voices heard on water quality

Before last weekend’s water summit hosted by Gov. Mark Dayton, two Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) farmer-leaders submitted guest columns to both the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press. We thought it was important that farmers were part of the discussion in the days leading up to the summit.

Unfortunately, the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press did not agree as both guest columns went unpublished. 

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Ignored by the Star Tribune: 4 steps toward improving water quality

Before last weekend’s water summit hosted by Gov. Mark Dayton, two Minnesota Corn Growers Association (MCGA) farmer-leaders submitted guest columns to both the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press. We thought it was important that farmers were part of the discussion in the days leading up to the summit.

Unfortunately, the Star Tribune and Pioneer Press did not agree as both guest columns went unpublished. 

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