Weekly Update for
Weekly Update for
The 2023 Fall Conference is Here!
The National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) and U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) will hold their Fall Conference next week in Cincinnati, OH. At the Fall Conference, NAWG and USW will host joint trade and wheat breeding meetings and a welcome reception. NAWG is preparing for important committee and planning meetings to steer the direction of the organization in the coming year. Thank you, National Wheat Foundation, for sponsoring a tour of the Siemer Milling Company next Tuesday! If you are hoping to attend next year, mark your calendar for November 10-14, 2024, for the 2024 Fall Conference in Phoenix, AZ. In the meantime, continue to be on the lookout for announcements regarding the upcoming Winter Conference and Commodity Classic meetings in January and February, respectively, on the NAWG website.
USDA Announces $1 Billion in 81 Regional Conservation Partnership Project
On Wednesday, the USDA announced the selection of 81 new Regional Conservation Partnership Program (RCPP) grant applications funded through the Farm Bill and the Inflation Reduction Act. The USDA also announced programmatic changes to streamline and simplify the program. RCPP leverages a voluntary approach to conservation that expands the reach of conservation efforts and climate-smart agriculture through public-private partnerships. The full list of projects can be found below.
USDA Announces Commodity Disaster Assistance Program for 2022
On October 27, the USDA announced it would be rolling out the Emergency Relief Program (ERP) 2022, which will provide over $3 billion to commodity and specialty crop producers impacted by natural disasters in 2022. On December 29, 2022, the Disaster Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act was signed into law, which included nearly $3.7 billion in financial assistance for agricultural producers impacted by eligible natural disasters that occurred in calendar year 2022. While there are similarities between ERP 2022 and the ERP Phase 1 and Phase 2 that provided assistance in 2020 and 2021, there are notable differences that are not limited to the progressive factoring applied to Track 1 payments. Although FSA is sending pre-filled ERP 2022 Track 1 application forms to producers who have crop insurance and Noninsured Crop Disaster Assistance Program (NAP) data already on file with USDA, producers indemnified for losses resulting from 2022 natural disasters do not have to wait to receive the application before requesting ERP 2022 assistance. Effective October 31, 2023, producers can apply for ERP 2022 benefits whether they have received the pre-filled application or not.
Secretary Vilsack Highlights USDA’s Commitment to Future Generations in Agriculture
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack addressed FFA members, agricultural educators, and guests at the 96th National FFA Convention opening session today. “Yesterday, I joined President Biden on a family farm in Minnesota to highlight how the Biden-Harris Administration’s investments are bringing new revenue to farms, increased economic development in rural towns and communities, and more opportunity throughout the country,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “Visiting the National FFA Convention as my second stop on the Administration’s Investing in Rural America Event Series was a natural choice. Today’s youth will help create tomorrow’s food system, one that encourages all producers to succeed. The MOU signed today comes at a key time to strengthen USDA’s involvement with the National FFA Organization and its valuable education mission. Through our partnership, we will continue working together to prepare young people to pursue careers in agriculture.” Secretary Vilsack was presented with an Honorary American FFA Degree and hosted a roundtable discussion with a group of students from across the country.
Registration is Now Open for USDA’s 100th Agricultural Outlook Forum
The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) opened its registration for the 100th Annual Agricultural Outlook Forum on October 31. “As we reflect on a century of agricultural progress, we’re not just celebrating our achievements, we're also preparing for an even better future,” said Secretary of Agriculture Thomas Vilsack. The event is titled “Cultivating the Future,” and will take place on February 15-16 in Arlington, VA. Secretary Vilsack will be giving the keynote address. Attendees will also hear from USDA Chief Economist Seth Meyer, other distinguished guest speakers, and get to participate in a few of the 30 breakout sessions available.
USDA’s Equity Commission Concludes Sixth Public Meeting to Improve Equity and Eliminate Barriers to Programs and Services
On October 27, the USDA’s Equity Commission concluded its sixth meeting on improving accessibility to USDA programs and eliminating barriers. “Thanks to the invaluable work of the Equity Commission, USDA has made intentional progress in our efforts to make the Department a more equitable institution that is forward-looking and prevents wrongdoings in the future,” said Secretary Vilsack. "Two years ago, when we began this process, we set very clear and intentional goals for the Commission and each member was selected to bring forth the voices of the communities they serve and their expertise to help us identify ways to design a better system that serves all Americans. I am grateful for the guidance of the Equity Commission and commit to ensuring their work lives on in a 'People's Department' that truly serves all equitably and fairly.”
Senate Passes Minibus Including Agriculture Appropriations
On November 1, the full Senate passed a package of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 MilCon-VA, Agriculture-FDA, and Transportation-HUD appropriations bills (H.R. 4366) by a vote of 82 to 15. Included as part of the minibus, is the FY 2024 Agriculture Appropriations bill (S. 2131) that was passed by the Senate Appropriations Committee by a vote of 28 to 0 on June 22. At this time, the House of Representatives has yet to pass its version of an agriculture appropriations bill, and no full-year FY 2024 appropriations bill has been signed into law. Currently, the federal government is funded through November 17, 2023.
Stabenow Restores Funding for Urban Agriculture in Senate-Passed Bill
On November 1, it was announced that Chairwoman of the Senate Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry Committee, Senator Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), restored $8.5 million in the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Fiscal Year 2024 Appropriations Bill for the Office of Urban Agriculture and Innovative Production. Chairwoman Stabenow filed an amendment for this funding, which originally was not included in the FY 2024 Agriculture Appropriations Bill, that provides support for urban, small scale, and innovative producers.
National Wheat Yield Contest Appreciates Our Partners
The 2023 National Wheat Yield Contest winners have been announced! Progressive Farmer/DTN has done an excellent job highlighting our winners and their production practices as our Official Publication of the NWYC. Thank you, Pam Smith and Jason Jenkins for your excellent work! The contest would not be possible without our generous partners, who also do a great job highlighting our winners and supporting their customers in entering the contest. Thank you to John Deere, WestBred, BASF, U.S. Wheat Associates, Croplan, Eastman, Limagrain Cereal Seeds, McGregor Companies, AgriMaXX, Ardent Mills, BushelFarm, Dynagro, GrainSense, Mennel, North Carolina Small Grain Growers Association, Ohio Corn&Wheat, PlainsGold, UPL, Uni-South Genetics, Grain Craft, Grow Pro, Kansas Wheat, Michigan Wheat, Miller Milling, Northern Crops Institute, and North Dakota Mill & Elevator. We are looking forward to our Wheat Quality Webinar on January 17, 2024, where we will announce the Top Quality Awards, and our Winner’s Reception in Houston, TX on February 28, 2024. Contact Anne Osborne (email@example.com) for information on becoming a partner or upcoming events!
National Wheat Foundation and BASF College Scholarship
The BASF National Wheat Foundation Scholarships application is now available! Deadline to apply is December 31, 2023. Follow the link below to find the online application. Please share this opportunity with undergraduate college students preparing for careers in agriculture. Preference will be given to, but the scholarship is not limited to, those pursuing a career directly benefiting the wheat industry. Thank you, BASF, for your support of these scholarships!