Manager’s Article for Week of June 20, 2016

By: Gay Bowlin, ManagerGay

Most of the wheat in the county has been cut and farmers have moved on to spraying and putting in double crops. This means that they are still in the fields and on the roadways – LOOK OUT FOR FARMERS.
Illinois wheat producers and processors are invited to attend the Illinois Wheat Association’s annual Illinois Wheat Forum, which will be held Tuesday, Aug. 23, at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Highland.
Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about soil health, market volatility, the nutrient loss reduction strategy, and crop insurance options, as well as information on production challenges and research trials and results.
Participants also will have the chance to tour a number of exhibits featuring seed companies, millers, elevators, crop protection services and other service industries.
“The Illinois Wheat Forum offers producers a chance to learn more about nearly every facet of production,” said Jim Fraley, executive director, Illinois Wheat Association. “From crop insurance to a 2017 growing season outlook, producers will take home a wealth of information that will help them increase the productivity and profitability of their farms.”
Registration is on-site and begins at 8:00 a.m., with sessions beginning at 9:00 a.m. The forum will conclude at 3:00 p.m. and includes lunch. Registration fee for Illinois Wheat Association members is $15 per person; the general public may attend for $30 per person. CCA credits will be available.
For more information, please visit the Illinois Wheat Association website at www.illinoiswheat.org, or call Jim Fraley, executive director, Illinois Wheat Association, at 309-557-3109. The Illinois Wheat Forum is made possible through the support of the Illinois Farm Bureau.
Looking for something for the kids to do this summer – make a stop at the St. Louis Science Center and visit their new exhibit GROW – and explore the Journey of Food. The GROW Exhibit opened to the public just this past Saturday. The journey of food starts long before you find it on your local grocery store’s shelves. Trace the steps from farm to table and everywhere in between. This indoor area features exhibits, educational programs and planned events that explore farming and its vital role in today’s complex local and global economies. Meet the people who make it all possible!
Plants are not the only source of food you can find on farms. Meet the livestock that farmers raise and explore how farmers tend their animals. Take a tour through this area and explore a simulated milking parlor, understand the digestive processes of livestock, and learn how farmers manage feed conversion. On select days, local farmers will visit, bringing their animals with them. Make friends with the animals and watch the farmers taking care of them.
For more information go to www.slsc.org and click on the link to take you to the GROW Exhibit and explore all of the fun things there are to do.
As an Illinois Farm Bureau member, you can receive special savings on theme park tickets to popular summer attractions like Six Flags St. Louis, Six Flags Great America, Holiday World, Silver Dollar City, Raging Rivers, and Adventureland.
Ticket savings vary, but can be as much as $27. With great rates like that, you can afford to take the whole family and save even more! For more information on joining the Franklin County Farm Bureau call the office at 435-3616.
Remember we are farmers working together. If we can help let us know.

Donation to Franklin County Food Pantry

FCFB1No matter the time of year there is always a need to help others. The Franklin County Farm Bureau presented a check to the 9 food pantries located in the county. This presentation was made possible in part by a grant received from the Illinois Farm Bureau and the Illinois Corn Marketing Board.
Additional funds had been received after the yearly Harvest of Help Donations from the county farmers and this money was also included in the check to each food pantry.
Pictured are (L-R – front row) – Joanne Rhodes – First Baptist Church of Zeigler, Rayeanne Miner – Crosswalk Commmunity Acton Center in West Frankfort, Vicki Seagle – Benton/West City Ministerial Aliance, Kirby Owenbee – First Baptist Church of Royalton, (L-R – back row) Billy Motsinger – Ministry for the Broken Hearted in Christopher, Dale Rhodes – First Baptist Church of Zeigler, David Garavalia – Benton Township Food Pantry, Susan Motsinger – Ministry for the Broken Hearted in Christopher, Donna Ahlfeld – Whittington Church Helps Ministry, Jane Pinkham – Community of Christ Food Pantry in Thompsonville, Teresa Shannon – Sesser-Valier Area LifeLine at Sesser City Hall and Kurt Sanders – Pastor at First Christian Church affiliated with Benton/West City Ministerial Alliance.
All of the above listed food pantries will accept donations of food and Zeigler, Whittington, Christopher and Benton/West City Ministerial Alliance will also accept donations of clothing. If you know of anyone needing help please do not hesitate to contact any of them.
Thank you to Jim Raben from the Illinois Corn Marketing Board for his help in the promotion “What Does Your Meat Eat”.

Manager’s Article For June 15, 2016

GayWHEAT HARVEST – “MOOSTASHE WORKSHOP” – IAA VISA CARD – ILLINOIS WHEAT FORUM
June 17, 2016
Gay Bowlin, Manager

Wheat harvest has begun around the county. On the Kelly and Lori Robertson Farm their moisture content has come in at 14 with dry being around 13 so they are doing a happy dance.
Beans and corn are still being planted throughout the county with lots of spraying being done and anhydrous put on the fields.
This dry weather has the farmers so busy in the fields and the days are long in anticipation of more rain in the future. Once everything is planted having a little rain will be a blessing.
The Franklin County Farm Bureau Ag in the Classroom will be holding a “Moostashe” workshop learning about milk at the University of Illinois Extension Office on June 20 & 21 from 9am to noon. This workshop is for ages 8-12. There is no cost involved but you must call the U of I Extension office at 439-3178 to reserve your place as space is limited.
Now you can carry your pride in agriculture with you wherever you go, thanks to the new design of the IAA Credit Union VISA card. The card replicates a vintage gate sign, making it easy to show off your pride with all of your purchases.
And that’s not all… When you make a purchase with your VISA card, you are helping to support Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom.
“We are proud and excited to introduce this new design for our VISA card,” said Sean Wells, CEO, IAA Credit Union. “Teaming up with Illinois Agriculture in the Classroom is a good fit for us, as well as a great purpose. Members of the Credit Union are also members of Illinois Farm Bureau and have a vested interest in agriculture. The purchases they make with their card reinforces their pride in farming and desire to teach kids about agriculture.”
To date, IFB VISA card purchases have earned $53,500 for IAITC.
Susan Moore, Director of the IAA Foundation, said she is thrilled with the new look and incentive behind the card. ”
It’s also reassuring to know that the IAA Credit Union is local and easily accessible. The Credit Union is part of the Farm Bureau family of companies. If you have a question or concern, you will receive personal attention by a credit union employee.
The card also offers low interest rates and no annual fees and is accepted worldwide.
To apply for your new VISA card, visit the IAA Credit Union, or call the IAA Credit Union at 800-676-2541.
Illinois wheat producers and processors are invited to attend the Illinois Wheat Association’s annual Illinois Wheat Forum, which will be held Tuesday, Aug. 23, at the Knights of Columbus Hall in Highland.
Attendees will have the opportunity to learn about soil health, market volatility, the nutrient loss reduction strategy, and crop insurance options, as well as information on production challenges and research trials and results.
Participants also will have the chance to tour a number of exhibits featuring seed companies, millers, elevators, crop protection services and other service industries.
“The Illinois Wheat Forum offers producers a chance to learn more about nearly every facet of production,” said Jim Fraley, executive director, Illinois Wheat Association. “From crop insurance to a 2017 growing season outlook, producers will take home a wealth of information that will help them increase the productivity and profitability of their farms.”
Registration is on-site and begins at 8:00 a.m., with sessions beginning at 9:00 a.m. The forum will conclude at 3:00 p.m. and includes lunch. Registration fee for Illinois Wheat Association members is $15 per person; the general public may attend for $30 per person. CCA credits will be available.
For more information, please visit the Illinois Wheat Association website at www.illinoiswheat.org, or call Jim Fraley, executive director, Illinois Wheat Association, at 309-557-3109. The Illinois Wheat Forum is made possible through the support of the Illinois Farm Bureau.
Remember we are farmers working together. If we can help let us know.

What Does Your Meat Eat?

Thanks to a grant from the Illinois Farm Bureau and the Illinois Corn Marketing Board the Franklin County Farm Bureau will provide 5 area grocery store meat departments (butcher shops) with the knowledge of what happens when their “meat” eats corn and corn products.
Posters were on display at Furlow’s Market in Zeigler, Sesser Foodland in Sesser, Bowlin’s Foodland in Christopher, Save-A-Lot in Benton and Tom’s Mad Pricer in West Frankfort. These posters included bullet points and pictures to make it interesting to read and hopefully provide information that consumers maybe were not aware of.
WQRL Radio participated in this promotion by giving information on air during their afternoon drive from 3-6 with Ashley and by running ads and PSAs throughout the month.
We completed the promotion by presenting 9 Franklin County Food Pantries with $100 each.

Manager’s Article June 6, 2016

GayPlanting has been a nightmare this year – with so many places needing to have re-plant it is hard to not knock down the stalks that have taken hold so this is a dilemma for all farmers in the county. Corn and soybeans are being planted as you are reading this making the farmers in the county happy except for the replant nightmare. Now if everything can get planted and we can get a little rain throughout the summer we still have a good chance of making a decent crop.
There will probably be wheat cut this week but the moisture content will still be an issue.
Very little hay has been cut and it is past its prime now but there will probably be a lot of hay cut this week. The more mature the hay the less quality there is.
The Franklin County Farm Bureau Ag in the Classroom will be holding a “Moostashe” workshop learning about milk at the University of Illinois Extension Office on June 20 & 21 from 9am to noon. This workshop is for ages 8-12. There is no cost involved but you must call the U of I Extension office at 439-3178 to reserve your place as space is limited.
A unanimous Supreme Court last week ruled landowners may challenge the federal government whenever the Army Corps of Engineers tries improperly to regulate land with regulations designed to protect water.
Landowners have attempted many times to challenge Corps rulings known as jurisdictional determinations, but the government successfully argued that those determinations were not “final agency actions” and the lawsuits were dismissed. Now, when the Corps asserts jurisdiction over low spots that look more like land than water, it will have to do so with the knowledge that its jurisdictional determination can be tested in court.
“The decision made on June 1st removes a huge roadblock that has prevented landowners from obtaining relief from the courts when the Corps illegally claims their land is federally regulated water,” AFBF President Zippy Duvall said. “Now, farmers and ranchers can have their day in court when the government tells them they cannot plow a field or improve a ditch without a federal permit.”
Thanks to a grant from the Illinois Farm Bureau and the Illinois Corn Marketing Board the Franklin County Farm Bureau will provide signage to display at the meat departments at Save-A-Lot in Benton, Furlow’s Market in Zeigler, Bowlin’s Foodland in Christopher, Sesser Foodland in Sesser and Tom’s Mad Pricer in West Frankfort. This will give people the knowledge of what happens when their “meat” eats corn and corn products.
Posters will be provided with bullet points and pictures to make it interesting to read and hopefully provide information that consumers were not aware of.
WQRL Radio will also participate in this promotion by giving information on air during their afternoon drive from 3-6 with Ashley. Tune in June 6th through the 17th.
We will complete the promotion by presenting 9 Franklin County Food Pantries with $100 each.
Remember we are farmers working together. If we can help let us know.

Manager’s Article, June 1, 2016

WEATHER – SOYBEANS – TPP
Gay Bowlin, Manager

The weather forecast for the week is favorable for the farmers – with only a slight chance of rain this farmers will out in full force. This makes for long days in the fields and for some this means that they will be utilizing the roadways into the evening hours. Please be safe and realize that they are helping to put food on your tables.
Have you been seeing helicopters and small aircraft over fields lately? Some of the farmers are planting soybeans in a – not so new – unconventional manner. They are flying on soybeans into standing wheat fields. They drop soybean seeds from the air and they fall through the standing crop. The ground must be wet for seeds to sink into the soil and the ground must remain wet to assure germination. If the ground dries up too fast the plants will die. If seeds were planted last week there is a good chance that the germination will take place and health soybean crops will be harvested in the fall (information taken from Illinois Soybean Association Double-Crop Specialist Blog from Kelly Robertson)
The annual Southern Illinois wheat tour, sponsored by the Illinois Wheat Association, reported an average yield estimate at 63.5 for the upcoming harvest.  Yields ranged from a low of 38 bushels/acre in Jefferson County to as high as 85 bushels/acre in Macoupin County. This year’s estimated yield is below last year’s tour estimate of 65 bushels/acre.
FarmWeekNow’s Dan Grant, who was on the Southern Illinois Wheat Tour, says participants found disease pressure during their first field check.  The farmer told tour participants that fungicide was not applied.
Wheat yields on the tour generally were in the low-60s to 80-plus. The big difference is between fields treated with fungicide vs. those untreated.  Army worm pressure is low so far and farmers attribute that to cool temperatures this month.
For those of you who were able to call Congressman Mike Bost last week to give your input on the Trans Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade agreement between the U.S. and 11 other Pacific Rim Nations to cut tariffs, reduce non-tariff trade barriers and increase new U.S. Ag exports – I want to say thank you so much. I do not know which way Congressman Bost is leaning at this time but Franklin County has certainly indicated how they feel about this and if he listens to us then he will support the TPP. Now the waiting begins but I will let you know as soon as I find out. If you called and did not report your call to the office please do so now by calling (618) 435-3616.
Thanks to a grant from the Illinois Farm Bureau and the Illinois Corn Marketing Board the Franklin County Farm Bureau will provide signage to display at the meat departments at Save-A-Lot in Benton, Furlow’s Market in Zeigler, Bowlin’s Foodland in Christopher, Sesser Foodland in Sesser and Tom’s Mad Pricer in West Frankfort. This will give people the knowledge of what happens when their “meat” eats corn and corn products.
Posters will be provided with bullet points and pictures to make it interesting to read and hopefully provide information that consumers were not aware of.
WQRL Radio will also participate in this promotion by giving information on air during their afternoon drive from 3-6 with Ashley. Tune in June 6th through the 17th.
We will complete the promotion by presenting 9 Franklin County Food Pantries with $100 each.
There are many local member discounts for Franklin County Farm Bureau Members – Lake Cove Hotel, Anrap Rentals, Bowlin’s Foodland, Furlow’s Market, Blue Ridge Tractor,Door Doctor of Southern Illinois, Hobbs Service Company, Reed Heating & Air Conditioning, Fast Truck & Trailer, Concept of Illinois, Christopher Subway and Jamerson Auto SalesFor the entire current list and/or to become a member please call us at (618) 435-3616.  If your business would like to be included in our membership mailings to renewals and to new members please contact us as well.
Remember we are farmers working together. If we can help let us know.