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Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012

Summer Fun In Nebraska page 14

ROAD TRIP Nebraska Now Has 16 Livestock Friendly Counties

Farm Bill Takes Spotlight in Senate

page 8

page 15

Capturing Energy from Hog Manure

Lean, Finely Textured Beef Will Be Served in Schools

page 10

page 25


JUNE 20, 2012

contents In Every Issue 3-4 County News 5 Member Benefits 6 What’s Cooking? 7 National News 14 Cover Story 26 Want Ads

ROAD TRIP On the Cover Take a road trip across Nebraska this summer! Our top suggestions are the Seward 4th of July Celebration, Oregon Trail Days in Gering, Wayne Chicken Show, Nebraska’s Big Rodeo in Burwell and Kool-Aid Days in Hastings. Photo Illustration by Tara Grell

Recipes See what recipes we cooked up to celebrate the 4th of July and National Hot Dog Month. page 6

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

The President’s Message

What Is Important

By Steve Nelson, President Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation® You have probably heard about the tragic death of Anthony Blum, the young Broken Bow High School basketball coach who died in a car accident on June 1 along with fellow coach Zane Harvey. Anthony was our neighbor when he was growing up in the Keene, Hildreth and Minden area. He was a fine young man, doing lots of good things, and his death at age 24 is truly a loss: to his family, his friends, and the communities where he lived and worked. When I think of Anthony, his parents Dale and Jane, his brothers Gavin and Carson, I cannot help also thinking of our daughter Sarah, who died unexpectedly following surgery in 2006 when she was 21. I know the pain the Blum family is feeling.

COMMUNITY SUPPORT One of the things that helped our family the most was the outpouring of support we received from those we knew well and those we did not. It is about families, neighbors and faith communities. It is something we will always be thankful for. I know this is happening for Anthony’s family as well. One of the greatest fears of parents who have lost a child is that their son or daughter will be forgotten. That fear is shared by anyone who has lost a loved one. It is why we set aside Memorial Day, to remember our soldiers and others who have gone before us.

GIVING A BETTER LIFE This year on Memorial Day, we had the largest turnout yet, 150 people, for the 5K Donate Life Fun Run.

Stacy Nelson poses for a picture with the Axtell High School cheerleaders who helped sponsor the 2012 Axtell Donate Life Fun Run in honor of Stacy’s sister, Sarah Nelson, who was a cheerleader and cross country runner for the school. Sarah died unexpectedly following surgery in 2006 when she was 21. The event encourages people to make plans to donate their organs and to join the organ donor registry.

The run is sponsored by the Axtell High School cheerleaders; Sarah was a cheerleader and cross country runner. This event encourages people to make plans to donate their organs and to join the organ donor registry. Sarah had told us that if anything ever happened to her to “give away everything you can.” Her gifts gave a better life to more than 60 people. Our community’s generosity in honoring her memory by sponsoring and supporting the Fun Run fills my heart in a way I can’t explain. Giving and receiving is what makes us a community and it is what makes Farm Bureau such a strong organization as well.

Can Care-A-Van Results Nebraska Farm Bureau sponsored the 10/11 Can Care-A-Van again this year. The goal was to collect 94,000 pounds of food. See the story to find out how many pounds were collected. page 13

150 runners and walkers from across that state turned out Memorial Day Weekend to participate in the 5K Donate Life Fun Run.

VOLUME 30 ISSUE 6 June 20, 2012 USPS 375-780 ISSN 0745-6522

Wildfires in Nebraska See what officials are doing in Harrison and Potter, Neb., to battle wildfires brought on by extremely dry conditions.

Official publication of the Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation


page 12

Nebraska Farm Bureau’s Mission is Strong Agriculture ...... Strong Nebraska. Drought Concerns A lack of precipitation has farmers and ranchers worrying about drought conditions. Find out what Farm Bureau is doing to help. page 15

Yearly subscription: 50 cents of membership dues. Associate Member, Nebraska Press Association

EDITORIAL STAFF Editor/Advertising/Writer: Tina Henderson or ext. 4446 Writer: Craig Head or ext. 4435 Graphic Designer/County News/ Photo Contest: Tara Grell or ext. 4494 Want Ads and County Annual Meeting Notices: Natalie Friesen or ext. 4485

NEBRASKA FARM BUREAU FEDERATION Steve Nelson, president (Axtell) Mark McHargue, first vice president (Central City) Rob Robertson, chief administrator/ secretary-treasurer (Lincoln)

BOARD OF DIRECTORS Sherry Vinton, second vice president (Whitman) Nathan Bartels (Elk Creek) Andy DeVries (Ogallala) Del Ficke (Pleasant Dale) Jason Kvols (Laurel) John C. Martin (Pleasanton) Scott Moore (Bartley) Kevin Peterson (Osceola) Tanya Storer (Whitman) Shelly Thompson (Whitney)

NEBRASKA FARM BUREAU NEWS is published monthly, except July, by Nebraska Farm Bureau Federation, 5225 South 16th St., Lincoln, NE 68512. Periodicals postage paid at Lincoln, NE and additional entry offices. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: Nebraska Farm Bureau News Attn: Tina Henderson P.O. Box 80299, Lincoln, NE 68501.

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


COUNTY NEWS Lancaster County Farm Bureau

Students Visit McGill Farm Near Waverly Fourth graders from Meadowlane Elementary School in Lincoln touched a calf on Erma McGill’s farm in rural Waverly on May 4. Their teacher, Sandy Dorn, and McGill have been participants in the Agriculture in the Classroom (AITC) Ag Pen Pal program for many years. While visiting the farm, the students were able to experience firsthand how important farms are to their everyday lives and how food comes from the farm or ranch and gets to their table. Lancaster County Farm Bureau board member Herschel Statts taught the students about seeds farmers use. Ellen Hellerich, former AITC statewide coordinator, showed the students pictures of products they eat which came from the products grown on the farm and products made from different grains, such as packing material and crayons. Students also got to see sheep and ride a horse. The pen pal program links classrooms and farm/ranch families from across Nebraska. They exchange letters with each other three times during the school year.

Kimball/Banner County Farm Bureau

Students Learn About Grains and Antique Tools at 13th Annual Ag Fest Kendall and Beverly Atkins held the 13th Annual Ag Fest May 8 at their historic Brookside Farm located just north of Kimball. One hundred fifth and sixth grade students and 30 volunteers from the Kimball/Banner county area participated in eight learning stations staffed by Farm Bureau members, friends, volunteers and ag professionals. The students rotated through stations every 20 minutes. The stations focused on safety, rangelands, use of an acre, water conservation, antique tools, animals, wheat and grains, and branding. Kimball FFA junior and senior students also presented a program on the importance of agriculture.

Dodge and Douglas County Farm Bureaus

Students Learn About Local Agriculture at ‘A Day on the Farm’ Dodge and Douglas County Farm Bureaus helped support the ‘A Day on the Farm’ event held April 25-27. The event is organized by University of Nebraska-Lincoln Extension from Dodge and Washington counties. More than 700 third grade students attended this year’s event at the Washington County Fairgrounds in Arlington. Students learned where their food comes from and hopefully developed a positive attitude and interest in local agriculture by participating in six 15-minute hands-on sessions which ran concurrently. The sessions focused on agriculture technology, alternative agriculture, beef, corn/soybeans, dairy and swine. Pictured are Bennington Elementary students inspecting the pigs on display during the swine session.

Thank You Ag Pen Pals! Nebraska’s Agriculture in the Classroom program, which is managed by Nebraska Farm Bureau, thanks the 282 farm and ranch families who participated in the 2011-2012 Ag Pen Pal Program. Thanks to all Ag Pen Pals who invest their time to help educate today’s youth about the importance of agriculture! If you would like more information about the Ag Pen Pal Program, or if you know someone who would like to participate, contact Bailey Kobs at or 800-546-3496. For more information about AITC visit:


JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

COUNTY NEWS Jefferson County Farm Bureau

County Farm Bureau Awards Fairbury High Graduate $500 Scholarship Jefferson County Farm Bureau has awarded Jarrod Shinn of Fairbury a $500 scholarship. He is the son of Gary and Cyndi Shinn and graduated from Fairbury High School this year. He is planning to attend Central Community College-Columbus with an intended major of electromechanical technology. The scholarship is designed to provide assistance to a student who wants to continue his or her education at the post-secondary level in an agricultural area or agriculture-related field.

Douglas County Farm Bureau

Four $2,000 Scholarships Presented to Local Students Douglas County Farm Bureau has awarded four $2,000 college scholarships to recipients Abbey Christensen (upper left), Keith Grimm (upper right), Benjamin Kahlandt (bottom left) and Darrick Spilker (bottom right). Christensen graduated from Bennington High School and will attend the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, with the goal of someday being a family physician. She is the daughter of Don and Denise Christensen. Grimm graduated from Douglas County West High School and will attend Iowa Western Community College, majoring in pre-engineering. He is the son of Thomas and Elizabeth Grimm. Kahlandt also graduated from DC West High School and will attend the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, majoring in agronomy. He is the son of Wayne and Melinda Kahlandt. Spilker graduated from Elkhorn High School and will attend UNL, majoring in agricultural engineering. He is the son of Jeffrey and Marcia Spilker. The scholarships are payable in four $500 per semester segments to the student’s college or university upon proof of the students’ enrollment each semester.


2012 Nebraska Farm Bureau® Photo Contest

REMINDER: Entry Deadline is Friday, July 13, 2012 For official rules and entry form visit and click on the Photo Contest link. CATEGORIES: • All in a Day’s Work

Jessica Tayl

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• Nebraska’s Natural Beauty

PRIZES: ADULT: 1st Place in each category – $150 2nd Place in each category – $100 3rd Place in each category – $50 Grand Prize: digital camera, bag and SD card (chosen using 1st place winners of each category and decided by judges at NEFB State Office)

Kathy Moh

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YOUTH: one winner will receive a digital camera


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Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012



Staying Safe on Your Summer Road Trip West Des Moines, Iowa — With kids out of school, summer is the perfect time for a family trip. To save money, many families will be bypassing the airport and hitting the road. In fact, according to a survey by Trip Advisor, 70 percent of those traveling this past Memorial Day got there by car. A separate survey by Harris Interactive revealed that Americans plan on racking up an average of 1,172 miles in leisure driving over the next three months. If your summer vacation travel starts in the car, Farm Bureau Financial Services offers these tips to help you prepare. Essentials for the Car Traveling smart means traveling safe. Pack your car with nonperishable food, water, a first-aid kit, blanket and flashlight. In an emergency, these items could save your life or the life of another motorist. It is also important to keep a set of jumper cables in your vehicle. Emergency Contact Information Keep emergency names and numbers handy. If you have a cell phone, enter your emergency contacts under the acronym ICE (“in case of emergency”), so paramedics, firefighters, police officers or hospital personnel can contact your next of kin to obtain impor-

becoming a major roadblock during your trip. About a week before you go, have a mechanic perform a full safety inspection on your car, including checking belts, hoses and battery, which will give you time to make any needed repairs.

tant medical information. Also leave key contact information and detailed trip information with friends or family at home. Proof of Insurance Carry proof of auto insurance, car registration and your driver’s license at all times. In the event of an accident or traffic stop, you will need this information. Farm Bureau Financial Services customers can keep their agent’s contact information at the ready with the My FBFS iApp. The app comes complete with a travel game to ward off boredom, a gas mileage tracker and more. Vehicle Maintenance Keep routine vehicle maintenance such as oil changes, fluid levels and tire pressure up to date. This will keep a minor setback from

RV Maintenance Just because everything was working when you put your RV or trailer in storage doesn’t mean it is now. So just like your vehicle, you will want to check tires, batteries, connections, latches, propane tanks, fire extinguisher and water system, especially if it’s been a while since you’ve used it. Also, now’s a good time to make sure your recreational vehicle coverage is up to date on all your toys, especially if you’ve added a motorcycle, ATV or boat in the off season. Talk to your Farm Bureau agent to learn more. Key Problem-Solver One of the most common travel issues is locking your keys in the vehicle. To avoid headaches and expense, take a spare set of keys and be sure to keep them where they won’t accidentally be locked in the car. Consider adding emergency roadside assistance coverage to your car insurance policy, which


can cover both emergency towing and services like jump-starts, flat-tire fixes, fuel delivery and lockouts. Get the Best Gas Mileage Fuel can be the biggest expense of your trip. To squeeze more miles out of every tank, drive the speed limit. Higher speeds increase wind resistance and reduce your engine’s efficiency. Also, check the sticker on your doorjamb for the recommended pounds per square inch (psi) and keep your tires properly inflated. Follow these simple tips and enjoy your travels worry-free. Contact your Farm Bureau agent to make sure your car insurance is up to date and to learn about other steps you can take to ensure your getaway goes exactly as planned. About Farm Bureau Financial Services Through an exclusive, multi-state agent force, the companies affiliated with the Farm Bureau Financial Services brand underwrite, market and distribute a broad range of insurance and financial services products to individuals and businesses. Learn more about us by visiting Or, visit us on Facebook, Twitter or YouTube.


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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

WHAT’S COOKING? If you want to submit your own recipes, and photos if you have them, send them via email to

July Celebrations: 4th of July and National Hot Dog Month

Festive Non-Pies

Ingredients One recipe for pie crust or one ready-made unbaked pie crust One egg white Small amount of sugar (decorative sugar is pretty) Pie Crust Ingredients 2 cups flour 1/4 teaspoon salt 1/2 cup shortening 1 egg, beaten 1 tablespoon vinegar 3-5 tablespoons cold water Fruit Filling Ingredients 1-1/2 lbs. berries (raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, strawberries or a combination) 2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice 2/3 cups sugar 2 tablespoons quick-cook tapioca 1 tablespoon butter Directions 1. Roll out pie crust to 1/8-inch thickness. 2. Using cookie cutters, cut out at least eight shapes (stars, hearts, etc.) for individual pies. 3. Place on an ungreased sheet pan; brush with egg white and sprinkle with sugar. 4. Bake at 375° F for about 15 minutes. Cool on a rack. 5. In a small bowl, mash 1 cup berries with lemon juice and 1/3 cup sugar; stir in the tapioca and let stand for 15 minutes. 6. In a heavy saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the berry mixture and remaining 1/3 cup sugar. Cook, stirring often, until hot, about 3 minutes. 7. Add the remaining berries and bring to a boil; boil 3 minutes, stirring often; lower heat, cover and simmer, stirring often, until the tapioca is tender, about 15 minutes. Let cool. 8. Spoon filling into dishes. Place pie crust pieces on top. Yield: 6 servings

BLT Hot Dog

Summer Orzo Salad

Dressing Ingredients 1 envelope Ranch Dressing powder 3 tablespoons olive oil 3 tablespoons red wine vinegar 1 teaspoon sugar Salad Ingredients 1 cup orzo, cook according to directions, cool 1 cup black olives sliced 1 cup diced red pepper 1/2 cup feta cheese 2 tablespoons fresh basil or flat-leafed parsley, chopped 1 cup chopped cucumber Directions 1. In a small bowl, combine dressing ingredients. Blend well. 2. In a large bowl, combine salad ingredients. 3. Pour dressing over vegetables so that everything is evenly coated. Refrigerate until serving time. Yield: 10-12 servings

Red and Blue Berry Lemonade Slush

Ingredients 2 cups lemon juice (bottled or fresh -- fresh is best) 1 1/2 cups fresh raspberries 1 1/2 cups fresh blueberries 1 to 1 1/4 cups sugar 4 cups cold water Contributor’s note: I used frozen berries, thawed. Directions 1. In a blender, combine the lemon juice, fruits and sugar. Process until blended. Strain and discard the seeds. 2. In a 2 1/2 quart pitcher, combine blended mixture and water. Pour into a freezer container. Cover and freeze for eight hours or overnight. 3. Just before serving remove from the freezer and let stand for 30-45 minutes or until slushy. Yield: 2 quarts (8-10 servings)

Ingredients One hot dog per person One strip of bacon per person One bun per person Lettuce, shredded Tomatoes, diced Mayonnaise or salad dressing Directions 1. Fry thick strips of bacon until crisp. 2. Fry hot dogs in the drippings. 3. Serve on toasted buns with mayonnaise, shredded lettuce, diced tomato and bacon.

Contributor’s note: I found this an especially refreshing summer beverage: fill a glass half full of the slush and finish filling the glass with lemon-lime soda.

UPCOMING MONTHS Below are themes for the coming months! Submit your recipe to: August – All American Breakfast Month and National Chicken Month September – National Pork Month and National Pizza Month October – National Peanut Butter Lover’s Month and National Pepper Month

Festive Non-Pies Fruit Filling recipe from Everyday with Rachael Ray Magazine. Summer Orzo Salad from Mandy Smidt, Johnson County Farm Bureau member. BLT Hot Dog recipe from Red and Blue Berry Lemonade Slush recipe from Taste of Home Magazine. All photos from Lois Linke, wife of Karl Linke, Nebraska Farm Bureau district director of member services for the southeast.

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


NATIONAL NEWS Congressional Happenings have more certain and predictable market access as a result of Russia’s commitment not to raise tariffs on any products above the negotiated rates and to apply international food safety standards in a uniform and transparent manner.” Farm Bureau will now push for the bill to reach the Senate floor for passage. • Russia Trade Legislation Introduced Farm Bureau is very supportive of recently introduced legislation to establish Permanent Normal Trade Relations (PNTR) with Russia. Sen. Max Baucus (D-MT) and Sens. John Thune (R-SD), John Kerry (D-MA) and John McCain (R-AZ) unveiled legislation that will allow U.S. agriculture to participate in Russia’s upcoming World Trade Organization membership. “Russia PNTR is a critical step toward ensuring the U.S. benefits from Russia’s accession to the WTO and remains competitive in that market,” American Farm Bureau President Bob Stallman said. “U.S. farmers will

• Ag Coalition Urges Use of Science in Regulating Antibiotics A coalition of agricultural organizations, including Farm Bureau, recently sent a letter to Rep. Louise Slaughter (D-NY) regarding her support of severely restricting antibiotic use in livestock and poultry production. The coalition cited several published, peer-reviewed risk assessments showing any threat to human health from antibiotic use in livestock and poultry production is negligible, and pointed out that many of the bacterial illnesses becoming resistant to antibiotics in human medicine have little or no link to antibiotic use in food animals. The coalition also noted in the letter that a stringent federal approval

and regulatory process for antibiotics is already in place. In February, Slaughter asked food company representatives to submit to her by June 15 their purchasing policies related to antibiotic use in food animals. She is the primary author of the Preservation of Antibiotics for Medical Treatment Act (H.R. 965), which seeks to ban the use in livestock and poultry production of several classes of antibiotics employed for preventing and controlling diseases and for promoting nutritional efficiency. Farm Bureau opposes the legislation. • New Trade Position Wanted at USDA Many of the nation’s agricultural organizations have been pushing for a new

undersecretary position at USDA to oversee trade issues. The position would be under the purview of the undersecretary of Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services who also oversees the Farm Service Agency. Farm Bureau and 24 other organizations say USDA’s trade functions were last reorganized in 1978 when trade was not a significant issue for U.S. farmers. The groups are asking leaders in the House Agriculture Committee to include a provision in their version of the next farm bill that would establish the separate position for trade. “An undersecretary for Trade and Foreign Agricultural Affairs will provide a singular focus on trade and foster more effective coordination of transparent, rules-based trade policies in other USDA agencies,” the groups said in a letter to lawmakers. The Senate version of the farm bill does contain a provision authored by Nebraska U.S. Sen Mike Johanns that would require USDA to study the possible reorganization of its trade functions.



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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

Nebraska Now Has 16 Livestock Friendly Counties; 7 More Want To Be LFCs Nebraska now has 16 official Livestock Friendly Counties, with the addition of Scotts Bluff County on May 21. The Livestock Friendly County designation from the Nebraska Department of Agriculture recognizes counties that have demonstrated support for the state’s livestock industry. Agriculture is Nebraska’s largest industry and nearly half of all agricultural receipts come from livestock, which generate at least $6 billion each year. Fully half of Nebraska farms have a livestock or poultry operation, and more than one-third of the grain grown in Nebraska is fed to livestock. Seven additional counties are in various stages of seeking the LFC designation. The program began in 2005, after the Nebraska Legislature adopted and Gov. Dave Heineman signed a bill sponsored by then-State Sen. Phil Erdman of Gering. Morrill County Farm Bureau member Jeff Metz helped draft the legislation and was instrumental in Morrill County being named the first LFC. “We visited with the county board and jumped through more hoops than were probably necessary, such as holding more public hearings than were probably needed. But we wanted to be certain there weren’t any questions out there� about the program and the support for livestock production that it expresses, he said June 4. STREAMLINED APPLICATION Today the process is more streamlined, according to Steve Martin, ag promotion coordinator with the Department of Agriculture, who is responsible for the LFC program. It only requires a county board to have one public meeting prior to submitting an application. When a county expresses interest in the program, Martin meets with the county board to explain what’s involved. Generally board members decide after the meeting “’We’re

good with this’ and go forward with a public hearing,� Martin said, “or they ask their zoning board to take a look at it and make a recommendation� if the county is zoned. Counties may hold an informational meeting prior to the public hearing. Martin attends the meetings to be certain participants hear enough firsthand information to get their questions answered. PROCESS IS FLEXIBLE Counties apply for the Livestock Friendly County designation following the public hearing. The application process is very flexible, Martin said, and allows a county to be evaluated on its own merits by NDA. Local zoning regulations are used as a basis for evaluating a county’s livestock friendliness as part of the process, but if a county isn’t zoned, it can demonstrate its support in other ways, through statements on the importance of livestock to the county, its economic value to the county and efforts by the county to promote livestock. Recent history of livestock development in a county also can be used as a guide, Martin said. “An ‘Ag Appreciation Day’ is a great example of something a county can do to show how important livestock is to the economic health of the county,� Martin said. Counties that receive the LFC designation can promote themselves as such and display the LFC logo on paperwork and signage. They also are promoted by NDA in its domestic and international marketing programs. BENEFITS FOR LIVESTOCK PRODUCERS But it’s also important to recognize that the designation means a lot to individual livestock producers, Martin said: “They know that as responsible livestock producers, they can expand their operation and they’re going to find support in their county government.�

Gov. Dave Heineman announced Scotts Bluff County as Nebraska’s newest Livestock Friendly County May 21. With the addition of Scotts Bluff County, there are now 16 counties designated as Livestock Friendly through the state program coordinated by the Department of Agriculture. Scotts Bluff County will receive road signs bearing the program logo to display along highways. The designation ceremony was attended by several Farm Bureau members, along with Farm Bureau staff members Roger Berry and Tim Horn. Pictured are Scotts Bluff County Commissioners Mark Masterton, Mike Marker, Steve Stratton, Gov. Heineman, Ken Meyer and Sherry Blaha. Companies from outside Nebraska contact the Nebraska Department of Agriculture when they’re looking for a place to locate. The Livestock Friendly County designation is a strong selling point. “Right now we are hearing from mainly dairy and swine operations looking to locate or expand in Nebraska. Many swine operations are already shipping pigs to Nebraska for market, and they’re asking why not raise them in Nebraska, too,� he said. When he’s asked to suggest a good location for a company’s facility, Martin thinks of the Livestock Friendly Counties first. “We know their situation, who the contact people are and that they want more livestock development in their county. While we actively promote all our counties to these


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companies, with the non-designated counties it just takes some additional digging to get all the appropriate information.� LOCAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT Morrill County Commissioner Steve Erdman agrees about the importance of the program. He told the Scottsbluff Star-Herald at the designation ceremony for Scotts Bluff County that the LFC designation has helped Morrill County attract businesses. “We had two ethanol plants looking for a location,� Erdman said. “One plant specifically told us they considered us because of our livestock friendly designation.� Gov. Heineman continues to be a strong supporter of the program. He said at the Scotts Bluff designation ceremony, “Being part of the Livestock Friendly program is a way to recognize the tremendous impact the livestock industry has on Main Street and the local economy. It provides jobs for those working with animals and a marketplace for grain and hay producers, while also adding value to those products. With this designation, Scotts Bluff County has demonstrated it is open to agribusiness and the benefits that come from responsible livestock production.� The county-level Livestock Friendly designation is unique to Nebraska, according to Martin. “The difference we have with other states is our local zoning, local control. In other states, if a livestock operation meets state requirements, it can pretty much locate anywhere, so their promotional efforts are different. Here, with local control, the Livestock Friendly County program really does become a state-county partnership in economic development.�

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Nebraska Farm Bureau News


JUNE 20, 2012


would meet with EPA but not until a written response to their initial request had been received. Nebraska farmers object to the practice because it represents an invasion of privacy and an act of intimidation by a federal regulator. Nebraska’s Department of Environmental Quality already issues permits and regulates livestock farms.


Federation Grows Markets, Brings Value to Nebraska Meat Products

Johanns Amendment Would Halt EPA Flyovers

U.S. Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE), has introduced an amendment to the farm bill to halt aerial flyovers of livestock farms by the Environmental Protection Agency. The amendment was filed two days after EPA missed a deadline to respond to questions about the flyover program used by the agency to monitor manure management on livestock farms. U.S. Sen. Ben Nelson (D-NE) and U.S. Reps. Lee Terry (R-NE), Jeff Fortenberry (R-NE) and Adrian Smith (R-NE) had all previously co-signed a letter with Johanns asking EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson for specific information about the flyover program. EPA had scheduled a press conference in Lincoln and requested a meeting with staff from Nebraska’s Congressional delegation in mid-June. The Nebraska delegation declined the offer of the closed door meeting, instead indicating the members

AFBF Responds to USA Today Editorial on Egg Law

AFBF President Bob Stallman was featured in the June 12 edition of USA Today with an opinion titled “Opposing View – Egg Law Not What It’s Cracked Up to Be.� Stallman rebutted the paper’s “Deal on Hen Cages Show the Way� editorial in support of proposed federal legislation which mandates the phasedin installation of “enriched cages� for egg-laying hens over an 18-year period. “One of America’s favorite breakfast staples could soon become a lot more expensive, whether scrambled, poached or boiled. If the Egg Products Inspection Act Amendments of 2012 become law, consumers will have no choice but to pay the price,� Stallman warned.

Nebraska Farm Bureau State Board Member Kevin Peterson was in New Orleans May 21-25 as part of the U.S. Meat Export Federation (USMEF) Board of Directors meeting. USMEF is a nonprofit trade association founded to create new opportunities and develop existing international markets for U.S. beef, pork, lamb and veal. Peterson attended on behalf of Nebraska Farm Bureau, which is a member of the organization. The conference brought together suppliers and buyers of U.S. meat from around the world. USMEF has offices in Seoul, Tokyo, Beijing, Hong Kong, Shanghai, Singapore, Taipei, Moscow, St. Petersburg, Mexico City, Monterrey and Brussels. It also has special market representatives covering China, the Middle East, Central and South America and the Caribbean. The organization has helped grow U.S. red meat exports from $500 million in 1976 to more than $11.5 billion in 2011.

Federal Agencies: ‘Pesticide Residue Not A Food Safety Concern’

Data released by USDA’s Agriculture Marketing Service at the end of May confirmed previous findings that pesticide residues on food are not a safety concern. The information comes from USDA’s 2010 Pesticide Data Program annual summary. USDA began testing commodities in the U.S. food supply for pesticide residues in 1991 and since the mid ’90s has focused on foods most likely to be consumed by infants and children. USDA partners with state agencies to collect and analyze pesticide residue levels on selected foods. In 2010, surveys were conducted on a variety of foods, including fresh and processed fruits and vegetables, oats, eggs, catfish, baby food, groundwater, and treated and untreated drinking water. Similar to previous years, the 2010 report shows overall pesticide residues found on foods are at levels well below the tolerances set by the EPA. The USDA media release cited both EPA and the Food and Drug Administration’s agreement with USDA’s data findings, which reaffirm the safety of food from pesticide residues.

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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

Pilot Project Uses New Technology To Capture Energy from Hog Manure Hog farmer Mark McHargue is pilot-testing a small scale methane biodigester – and new digester technology – on his farm near Central City to see if it’s a cost-effective way to capture the energy contained in the manure his hogs produce. Methane digesters are a proven technology for larger pork operations but their $250,000 and up price tag makes them impractical for small- to medium-sized hog farms. “There’s a lot of 2,400- to 4,000-head finishing barns across the country and the systems now available are not feasible for that size,” he said June 6. “We do have lots of manure to deal with and it’s a great fertilizer. But it can also be energy.” FARM SHOP PROJECT McHargue, who serves as first vice president of Nebraska Farm Bureau, built his digester in his farm shop in February for about $5,000, using parts that include a 3,000-gallon plastic fertilizer tank bought from a neighbor. Construction took about a month, but it was preceded by a lot of studying – everything from scientific papers to YouTube videos. Plans for very small scale digesters are readily available online; they enable farmers in developing countries with a few head of livestock to cook food, instead of spending time looking for wood to burn. A methane biodigester is essentially a wastewater treatment facility, McHargue said. Manure slurry is piped into the digester, which uses part of the methane produced by the manure to fire a boiler. It heats the tank, which enables fast-growing bacteria to break down the manure into a thin liquid. The remaining methane can be used for heat in the barns or to run a generator to produce electricity.

McHargue will collect data from the digester this summer, to determine, for example, if it does actually digest five times as much manure as a conventional digester. He’s hopeful his experiment will be successful and transferrable to other small hog producers. “We want to be sensitive to the environment and try to produce as much energy as we can from different systems. It’s important for us as farmers to demonstrate to the people who are buying our products that we are doing things that are sustainable. When we’re growing our crops, we work to conserve water and not contaminate the soil with harsh chemicals. So this is just another step in hopefully building trust with our consumers.”

‘FIXED FILM DIGESTION’ McHargue’s digester uses new technology called “fixed film digestion.” Plastic media inside the tank provide more surface area for the bacteria to grow. “For every cubic foot we have inside our digester, we have 20 square feet of surface area and the bac-

teria grow on that.” With conventional digester technology, he would have a tank five times as large to process the same amount of manure. The smaller footprint of his fixed film digester is what gives McHargue hope that it can become a useful technology for farmers with 2,000 to 6,000 hogs; the smaller size should have a smaller price tag. The pilot tank processes about 500 gallons a day, while the hogs produce about 2,000 gallons. McHargue plans to add more tanks to the current system to see if it can continue to produce energy efficiently. The digester also will enable McHargue to change how he applies manure to his crop fields. He plans to apply the effluent from the digester through his center pivot systems, which will save time and money compared to spreading it on his fields. “The product that comes out of the digester has just as much nutritional value to the plant as manure that’s not processed. But because all the solids are broken down, the fertilizer that results is immediately available for the plants to use.” In contrast, manure that is spread on fields must break down naturally before plants can use it. BACTERIA NEUTRALIZE ODOR Another benefit of the “digested” product is that the bacteria neutralize the odor in the solids. “It has very little odor and it’s not offensive; it kind of smells like dirty dishwater,” McHargue said. “We normally could not pump straight out of the barn through the pivot because of the odor. “Using this process is one thing we can do as good neighbors. We’re considering building new facilities to finish pigs and we hope this (odor reduction) will allow us to be a better neighbor.”

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A methane biodigester is essentially a wastewater treatment facility. Manure slurry is piped into the digester, which uses part of the methane produced by the manure to fire a boiler. It heats the tank, which enables fast-growing bacteria to break down the manure into a thin liquid. The remaining methane can be used for heat in the barns or to run a generator to produce electricity. Hog farmer Mark McHargue is pilottesting a small scale methane biodigester – and new digester technology – on his farm near Central City.

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Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


We Support Agriculture Hires New Leader By Melissa Slagle Michele Ehresman is making a transition from her job as executive director of the Holdrege Chamber of Commerce to her new position as executive director of the group We Support Agriculture (WSA). WSA is an organization whose mission is to help Nebraskans know that caring for livestock animals is important to food production. Nebraska Farm Bureau is one of the sponsors of WSA. Ehresman joined WSA on June 1. A Lincoln native, Ehresman moved to Holdrege in south cenMichele tral Nebraska 21 years Ehresman ago and most recently served three years as executive director We Support executive director of Agriculture the Holdrege Chamber of Commerce. She has three adult children and will office out of Lincoln. For the first few months, her car will be her mobile office as she travels across the state, meeting with people and sharing the message about WSA.


WSA GOALS “My goals for WSA are first and foremost to share the truth with Nebraskans about the real agenda of the Humane Society of the United States and other animal rights groups. This agenda consists of refining and replacing meat, eggs and poultry in consumers’ diets. I also want Nebraskans to know that of the $130 million HSUS raised from their commercials last year, only 1 percent actually went back to help animal shelters,” Ehresman said June 4. Nebraska is built on agriculture – one in three jobs in the state is ag-related – and Ehresman brings a special advantage to the job position because she grew up as a “city girl.” But she has been immersed in the ru-

ral way of life for 21 years in Holdrege and now hopes to share her passion for agriculture with her urban counterparts across the state. Farmers have a unique way of adapting to the changing demands of consumers and the changing face of agriculture, she said. The way they farm and ranch may be different compared to 20 years ago, but their values and the care they give to their land and animals have remained unchanged. That message needs to be communicated in every corner of the state, she said. AG IMPACT “I want to share the positive impact that agriculture has in Nebraska, including economic stability and employment opportu- 1.888.580.AFAN (2326)

nities. Our farmers are caring people and I know this because they are my friends, they are my neighbors. I know they know how to take care of their animals and they go to great lengths to do just that.” Ehresman wants to share how farmers raise our food and how it goes from farm to plate. To do that successfully, support of all kinds is needed whether it be from local organizations, businesses or individuals. In addition to campaigns and consistent online updates in an effort to grow and promote the organization, WSA will soon join the social media realm on Facebook. WSA is also compiling a list that includes Chambers of Commerce, counties, state senators and of course, Gov. Dave Heineman, who support resolutions to keep animal rights groups out of the state. The list will soon be made available online. “We don’t want any groups coming into our state, telling our farmers how to do their jobs. They’ve done a wonderful job for decades,” said Ehresman. For more information about We Support Agriculture, visit or email Ehresman at Michele@WeSupportAg. org.

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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

Wildfires Hit Western Nebraska Officials in Harrison and Potter, Neb., are battling wildfires due to extreme dry conditions. The wildfire near Harrison is partially contained. It has blackened hundreds of acres in the northwest corner of Nebraska. Harrison fire officials say that the charred area has reached around 3,000 acres. No damage to any structures has been reported, nor any injuries. Potter fire officials say a fire caused by a lightning strike June 16 blackened nearly 3,000 acres in the southern Nebraska Panhandle and has been contained. The fire is about 15 miles north of Potter in Cheyenne County. High winds caused hot spots to flare into flames that eventually raced over rangeland

and into canyons on June 17. The fire was contained early on June 18. There have been no reports of injuries or any damage to structures.

Nebraska Farm Bureau Receives Honorable Mentions in Public Relations Awards Each year, state Farm Bureau staff members submit their organizations’ news stories, publications, photos, advertising campaigns, websites and other communications projects for national recognition at the AFBF Public Relations conference. This year the event was held in Traverse City, Mich. While Nebraska Farm Bureau didn’t win for its entries, it did receive two honorable mentions in the under 80,000 members competition – one for Best News Story and the other for Best Pamphlet or Brochure. The best news story honorable mention was for a story in the February issue of Nebraska Farm Bureau News on the Department of Labor’s rule change concerning farm labor. In the story called “Building Character…Working on the Farm,” NEFB staff members tried to show how the new rule would affect children who don’t live on a farm. The honorable mention for best pamphlet or brochure was for the Nebraska

Foundation for Agricultural Awareness Annual Report. Last year’s theme “Connecting the Dots 365 Days a Year” provided a graphic calendar filled with various colors, polka dots and photos representing activities AITC has been a part of the past year. Best News Story – Under 80,000 Competition WINNER: Utah – Matt Hargreaves, Utah Farm Bureau HONORABLE MENTION: Nebraska – Tina Henderson Best Pamphlet or Brochure – Under 80,000 Competition WINNER: Montana – Rebecca Colnar, Megan Chancellor HONORABLE MENTION: Nebraska – Tara Grell; Minnesota – Kristin Harner, Pam Dahlman, Madsen Ink and Corporate Graphics; Wisconsin – Sherri Sutton, Casey Langan; and New Hampshire – Kate Sartell

National Website Features Nebraska Century Farm Washington, D.C. — The American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture paints a picture of true sustainability through an interactive website that invites the general public to celebrate the contribution of century farms to the heritage of our nation. Century farms are those farms that have been in operation under the same family for more than 100 years. Appropriately named “Agriculture’s Lasting Heritage,” this website tells the story of American farm and ranch families who have shaped the history of our nation. Agriculture’s Lasting Heritage is a partnership between the American Farm Bureau Foundation for Agriculture and Capreno®, the longest-lasting herbicide of its kind. NEIDIG FARMS FEATURED Local century farm, Neidig Farms located in Madison, Neb., was recently featured on this national site. Bryce Neidig was Nebraska Farm Bureau president for 21 years. Selected for their significant contributions to sustainable agriculture and our national heritage, the story of this family farm was captured to help connect producers and consumers. You can view their profile by visiting Sustainability is a hot topic right now in agriculture. While the discussion has been gaining momentum, the truth is that sustainability has always been vital to agriculture and the longevity of family farms. As stewards of the land that has passed down through the generations, these families have an established practice of sustainability. How they practice sustainability may change over time, as new research finds new best practices, but it’s always been sustainable.

“Agriculture’s Lasting Heritage commemorates more than the proud tradition of the American farm and ranch family,” according to AFBF President Bob Stallman, who also serves as president of the foundation. “Farms and ranches that have been in the same family, and supporting family members and local communities for generations, stand as testament to the true sustainable character of American agriculture today,” Stallman said. “Farmers and ranchers, by nature, are always committed to leaving the land in better condition for the next generation. We are proud to help raise awareness of that through this new website.” It was a great fit for Capreno to be involved with this partnership, according to Farm Bureau. It’s the longest-lasting herbicide of its kind and delivers effective weed control with a very low use rate, thus supporting sustainability. All of the Capreno traits support the sustainability and longevity of agriculture. FAMILIES’ COMMITMENT Agriculture’s Lasting Heritage in our nation is enduring and beneficial, due to the commitment farm and ranch families continue to make to the land, and to each other. This project would not be possible without the support of title sponsor Capreno®, Farm Bureau said. Agriculture’s Lasting Heritage features a variety of components to interest non-farmers as well as farmers and ranchers. Stay up to date with new releases by following Agriculture’s Lasting Heritage on Facebook and Twitter @AgHeritage. Support the lasting heritage of the agricultural industry and visit today.


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Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


10/11 Can Care-a-Van Celebrates 25th year Anniversary Again this year, Nebraska Farm Bureau sponsored the 10/11 Can Care-a-Van, which celebrated its 25th anniversary. A big thank you goes out to all of the

County Farm Bureaus who helped collect food. Nebraska Farm Bureau had volunteers at major Care-a-Van stops and at additional locations where 10/11 person-

alities did not attend. The County Farm Bureaus that participated in this year’s event were Fillmore, Gage, Hall, Hamilton, Jefferson, Lancaster, Merrick, Nance,

Otoe, Platte, Sherman/Valley and York. The goal this year was to collect 94,000 pounds of food and the total number collected was 191,500 pounds of food.

Total pounds of food collected at the 10/11 designated sites: 2012 Stops Clay County, Sutton – 6,655 Fillmore County, Geneva – 8,750 Hall County, Grand Island – 47,262 Hamilton County, Aurora – 16,400 Jefferson County, Fairbury – 15,110 Lancaster County, Lincoln – 902 Nemaha County, Auburn – 2,337 Nuckolls County, Superior – 10,330 Otoe County, Nebraska City – 7,260 Platte County, Columbus – 57,000 York County, York – 7,654 TOTAL – 179,659

2012 Satellite Support Drives Antelope County, Elgin – 2,091 Brown County, Ainsworth – 648 Buffalo County, Gibbon-Shelton – 785 Buffalo County, Mid-Nebraska Food Bank-Kearney – 200 Butler County, David City – 953 Dawson County, Lexington – 175 Furnas County, Cambridge – 940 Gage County, Beatrice – 448 Merrick County, Central City – 600 Nance County, Fullerton – 1,736 Valley County, Ord – 1,225 Webster County, Red Cloud-Blue Hill – 2,040 TOTAL – 11,841

Nebraska Farm Bureau sponsored the 25th Annual 10/11 Can-Care-a-Van and kicked off the event June 1 in Lincoln at Hy-Vee on 50th and “O” street. Lancaster County Farm Bureau member Todd Reed helped collect food at the store. Hy-Vee agreed to host barrels at all Lincoln locations for the duration of the drive. A total of 902 pounds of food was collected in Lincoln.

Clay County Farm Bureau helped sponsor the 10-11 Can Care-a-Van which travelled to Sutton on June 5. Farm Bureau gave ice cream cups to people who donated food. Pictured from left are Ann Gasal, Sallie Barbee, Rita Johnson, Shirley Alberts, and Father Bill Holoubek.

The Can Care-a-Van stopped in Nebraska City June 6 and by 12:30 p.m. it had already met the goal of raising 5,000 pounds of food. Otoe County Farm Bureau members helped collect food that day, and the end-of-the-day total was 7,260 pounds!

Hall County Farm Bureau members fired up the grill June 8 at the Skagway in Grand Island and donated $1,362 in meal proceeds to those who dropped off their donations! 4-H’ers and high school wrestlers helped to carry donations while Hall County Farm Bureau members grilled and served burgers. In all, Grand Island collected an impressive 47,262 pounds of food. A man who wished to remain anonymous swiped his card at Skagway for $1,000 and sent volunteers on a Skagway shopping spree to fill the truck. Pictured from left are Mike Kohles, Kristen Klein, Shelly Russell, Mark Haskins, Steve Stettner, Bill Stettner and Treva Gangwish.

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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

Best of Festivals, Fairs and Other Fun in Nebraska By Tina Henderson If you want to celebrate cowboy history, participate in an old-fashioned pie eating or bubble gum blowing contest or be a part of a national chicken cluck-off, Nebraska in the summer is where you want to be for family, fun and sun! “Planning summer travel around festivals and events in Nebraska is a great way to see the state and enjoy all it has to offer,” Shannon Peterson, public relations coordinator for the state tourism division, said June 14. You can head to any community across this state and enjoy nonstop fun for your family and learn something new about our state in the process, she said. Below is a partial list of events you can attend across the state this summer! You can find a complete list of events at, along with information about things to do, places to stay and other tools for planning a summer vacation in Nebraska.

race up Scotts Bluff National Monument. Oregon Trail Days is July 12-15 in Gering. If you haven’t seen the western part of Nebraska, it is a diamond in Nebraska’s rough. In general, western Nebraska is known for vast grasslands interrupted by the occasional windmill, gravel road or ageold barn. The area is beautiful, with downhome, good-natured souls who are always willing to help out a neighbor. You will see that when attending Oregon Trail Days.

Young and old alike will enjoy the Wayne Chicken Show, in Wayne. The event includes the National Cluck-off, which gains national attention. The event is free family fun for all ages. Wayne Chicken Show, Wayne July 13-15 Northeast Nebraska is the home of the Wayne Chicken Show, in Wayne and this year’s theme is “Nightmare on Egg Street.” The event is free family fun for all ages. You won’t have a rotten time in Wayne! The 32nd annual event opens on Thursday, July 12 with a Farmer’s Market. The main events Friday, Saturday and Sunday include a cement chicken You can have some old-fashioned family fun at the Seward Fourth of July celebration. Many participate in the Bubble Gum Blowing contest. Fourth of July, Seward, July 4 Seward, Neb., is known as the Fourth of July city. An estimated 40,000-plus people come to this community of 6,500 each year to celebrate Independence Day with a flag-raising ceremony, anvil firing, hot air balloons, quilt shows, air show, antique tractor and car show, ethnic dancers, art, essays, concerts, movies, national pole vaulting competition, parade, food and fireworks. It has some old-fashioned traditions like the pie eating contest and the bubble gum blowing event. If you want some great entertainment on July 4th, head to Seward!

Photo Courtesy of Gering Citizen

Participants in the annual Oregon Trail Days Bicycle Hill Climb enjoy a fun workout on Summit Road at Scotts Bluff National Monument in Gering. Hundreds of bicyclists participate in the annual event. Oregon Trail Days, Gering July 12-15 Did you know that Nebraska’s oldest continuous celebration is Oregon Trail Days in Gering? It features parades, entertainment, a chili cook-off, international food fair, regional art shows, craft fairs, and a bike

auction, fireworks, the Wayne Chicken Show Parade, downtown street dances, poker run, car show, food and craft vendors and many games and contests including the National Cluck-off.

Cowboys from all over participate in the Big Rodeo in Burwell. At the event you will see clowns, wild horse races and steer wrestling.

Kool-Aid Days is a variety of family fun and kid-friendly activities. At the event you will see the world’s largest Kool-Aid stand and of course the Kool-Aid man will be on hand too!

Nebraska’s Big Rodeo, Burwell July 25-28 The town of Burwell, Neb., swells from 1,100 or so to nearly 21,000 people squeezing into town for wholesome family entertainment at the Burwell Rodeo! It is the only rodeo in the state with Canadian Chuck Wagon Races and a Wild Horse race. During the performance there are two chuck wagon races and one chariot race with different teams of horses. The rodeo uses the track for events to fill up the time while the Rodeo events are changing. So there is never a dull moment at this event. With Calamus Lake nearby offering water sports, camping and outdoor activities, and Burwell’s small town, rustic appeal, Nebraska’s Big Rodeo offers a lot of different options for those who want to relax, shut off the cell phone and enjoy a bit of old-fashioned cowboy fun.

Kool-Aid Days, Hastings Aug. 10-12 In 1927, Edwin Perkins invented Kool-Aid in Hastings. The six original flavors were strawberry, cherry, lemon-lime, grape, orange and raspberry (Mr. Perkins’ favorite). Kool-Aid was produced at 506-508 West 1st St. in downtown Hastings, across from Burlington Station. Perkins Products were manufactured there until January of 1931. Nearly 80 years later, Kraft Foods owns Kool-Aid. Over 500 million gallons are consumed each year worldwide by children of all ages! Since Kool-Aid Days began in 1998, the hub of the action has been the World’s Largest Kool-Aid Stand. The event has a parade, the Kwickest Kool-Aid Drinking Contest and live stage entertainment that is family fun for all ages.

More Events Across Nebraska DATE EVENT CITY June 30 – July 1

Moo at the Zoo Omaha A fun-filled country- and agriculture-themed event! Savor some country cooking, join in the watermelon and pie eating, enjoy games and live music and so much more.

July 3-4

Old West Trail PRCA 66th Rodeo & 4th of July Celebration Crawford Rodeo, fireworks and parade. Kids fun day rodeo and junior princess contest on July 2.

July 5-7

Diller Picnic Diller Southeast Nebraska’s largest community festival. Mud drags, tractor pulls, carnival, street dance, parade and more.

July 7-8

GermanFest Syracuse Celebrate German heritage. German dancers and singers, veiner dog races, ribfest, two-block beer garden and more.

July 8

Funk Festival of Cupcakes Funk Professionals, amateurs and talented kids showcase their baking skills in the Cupcake Capitol of Nebraska! Cupcake decorating, homemade ice cream, judging and prizes.

July 12-15

Comstock Rock Fest Comstock Nebraska’s party in the pasture! Four-day music festival with your favorite rock artists. Camping available.

July 15-20

Nebraska Star Party Valentine Six nights of astronomical observing at one of the premier star parties in the country. Beginner-friendly for those interested in the hobby of amateur astronomy.

Aug. 3-5

Wilber Czech Festival Wilber Czech dancing and music, authentic food and costumes, bands, three parades and contests in the Czech Capital of Nebraska.

Aug. 9-12

Capitol City Ribfest Lincoln Street festival featuring America’s best BBQ from vendors across the country and a variety of live music.

Aug. 10-11

Nebraska Balloon and Wine Festival Omaha Enjoy award-winning wine, live music and a hot air balloon launch.

Aug. 24 – Sept. 23

Nebraska State Fair Grand Island 4-H shows, exhibits, concerts and more.

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


Drought Conditions Raise Concerns for Farmers and Ranchers Many Nebraskans remember 2011 as the year flood waters brought destruction and devastation to farmers and other people living in eastern Nebraska along a swelling Missouri River. 2012, however, looks to bring an entirely different challenge. A lack of precipitation has farmers and ranchers worrying about drought conditions over the last month and a half, particularly in Nebraska’s panhandle and southern counties. The U.S. Drought Monitor released June 12 showed the vast majority of Nebraska is now experiencing abnormally dry conditions, with pockets of moderate drought across the panhandle and southern counties. Reports from Farm Bureau members across the state about the increasingly dry conditions prompted Nebraska Farm Bureau to bring awareness of a drought to USDA. “We’d heard from our members across western and southern Nebraska that pasture and other crop conditions were deteriorating rapidly as a combination of high heat, high winds and a lack of moisture had many farmers and ranchers concerned. Most concerning were reports from the panhandle counties which indicated

Abnormally Dry Drought Moderate Drought Severe

on-ground conditions were similar to the beginnings of the 2002 drought,” Nebraska Farm Bureau President Steve Nelson said. BE READY TO RESPOND In a letter sent June 5 to Michael Scuse, USDA deputy under secretary for Farm and Foreign Agriculture Services, Nebraska Farm Bureau asked the agency to monitor the state’s expanding drought conditions and to be ready to respond if the dry condi-

tions continue to persist. While noting lack of moisture in Nebraska was not yet as severe as the drought experienced in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, Farm Bureau pointed out the dry conditions of those areas had already put a significant strain on Nebraska’s grass and hay resources. “Over the past two years, cattle from those areas have made their way into Nebraska. At the same time, much of the Ne-

braska hay reserves were sent to those areas to provide needed forage for the cattle that remained. If dry conditions persist, we could face a scenario where a lack of feed sources would put a significant strain on Nebraska’s cattle industry,” Nelson wrote. NEBRASKA NO. 2 IN CATTLE Nebraska became the country’s secondlargest cattle-producing state in 2011, witnessing a 4-percent increase in total cattle numbers due in large part to the movement of cattle into Nebraska from drought-stricken states. Nebraska’s cattle industry adds over $7 billion to Nebraska’s economy each year. In the letter to USDA, Nelson reiterated the need for USDA to continue to monitor the drought situation in Nebraska and to be ready to act if conditions continue to deteriorate. “While the last few years have been profitable for Nebraska agriculture, a drought can change things in a hurry and those economic impacts go well beyond the farm gate. Nebraska has largely escaped the economic downturn that has gripped much of the country due to its strong agriculture economy,” Nelson wrote.

Senate Debates Farm Bill, Path to Finish Line Unclear The U.S. Senate began debate on its version of the 2012 Farm Bill on June 4. Nebraska Farm Bureau continues to emphasize the importance of working toward a finished farm bill before the end of the year, to help bring certainty to farmers regarding farm programs. According to Jordan Dux, national affairs coordinator for Nebraska Farm Bureau, Farm Bureau wants a farm bill that works for America’s farmers and for American taxpayers, and that means being fiscally responsible. “Standing firm on reducing the overall cost of the farm bill is going to be key, given the realities of much-needed spending cuts to address federal budget deficits,” Dux said. “To move forward, Congress will need to be close to the $23 billion in farm bill reductions over a 10-year period. as was proposed for the legislation last fall.” MAJOR CHANGES PROPOSED In the Senate version, farmers would contribute to reducing overall farm bill costs through major changes in the way the current farm program operates. The foundation of the Senate bill calls for eliminating

Farm Bureau’s Farm Bill Priorities Reduce overall cost of the farm bill by standing firm in proposed $23 billion reduction over 10-years in total farm bill spending to help address federal budget deficits. Protect and strengthen the federal crop insurance program and prevent funding reductions. Develop a commodity title that attempts to encourage producers to follow market signals rather than make planting decisions in anticipation of government payments. Prevent a farm bill from basing any program on cost of production. Addressing the net effect of the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) Eligible Acres provisions to ensure a true “planted acres” approach to avoid issues that raise equity and planting distortion concerns. Eliminate payment limitations and Adjusted Gross Income provisions in current law.

the existing annual direct payment program to Nebraska through the current program. in favor of a program that uses crop insur- “What we’re looking for is a program that ance, revenue encourages Total USDA Budget in 2012: farmers to folloss protection and other low market $144.2 Billion supports as signals rather the foundathan making tion of a safety planting decinet to help sions in anOt farmers when ticipation of h 8% er needed. government “Nebraska payments,” he farmers and said. Conser Food vation ranchers are While Farm & Fore Assistance stry 8% willing to do Bureau supand Nutrition their part to ports the Programs g help with bude l i m i n a t i on A ms a 74% r get reductions of direct payg Pro 0% and for the ments, it con1 most part, the tinues to faSenate version vor having a is a good first safety net for step forward farmers, one in doing that,” that includes Dux said. The a strong crop change would eliminate roughly $300 mil- insurance program, continuation of a marlion a year in direct payments that come keting loan program and a catastrophic rev-

enue loss program, Dux said. “The drought conditions in Nebraska are a perfect example of why crop insurance is a critical element of a strong safety net. The risk factors from Mother Nature in farming, whether it’s a drought or a flood, are simply beyond a farmer’s control, and those risks can endanger the survivability of the farm.” NO HOUSE BILL YET While deliberations are underway on the farm bill in the Senate, the House Agriculture Committee has yet to formulate its version. According to Dux, the House version is likely to look significantly different than the version now under discussion in the Senate. “The House will likely look for even greater spending reductions, specifically in the area of nutritional spending provisions of the farm bill.” While not often noted, nearly 80 percent of total farm bill spending goes for food and nutrition programs. The remainder is directed for commodity programs that directly affect farmers and ranchers. “If the Senate gets their version passed, we’ll likely see a push to move things forward in the House,” said Dux.

Key Amendments: Senate Farm Bill Debate A number of amendments have been offered to the Senate version of the farm bill. Nebraska Farm Bureau is following these amendments closely: Target Prices – Sens. Kent Conrad (D-ND) and Saxby Chambliss (R-GA) have introduced an amendment that is being seen as a concession to southern commodity farmers. The amendment would include updated target prices in the bill’s commodity title, adding the program as an addition to the Ag Risk Coverage (ARC) revenue protection program. EPA Regulations – A number of amendments related to EPA authority have been introduced. Among them are measures to prevent the EPA and Army Corps of Engineers from moving forward with their proposed guidance to greatly expand the reach of the Clean Water Act; limit EPA’s ability to regulate farm dust; prevent a duplicative new regulation which would force farmers and others to purchase a permit to apply a pesticide over or near water; and restrictions on EPA flyovers of agriculture operations offered by Sen. Mike Johanns (R-NE). Animal Rights – Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) has introduced an amendment based on her bill to activate the agreement by the United Egg Producers (UEP) and

the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) regarding animal care standards for egg-laying hens. The legislation specifies a phased-in move to mandatory enriched cage housing for all commercial egg layers in the U.S. Farm Bureau opposes the amendment because passing any legislation to set federal on-farm standards would set a dangerous precedent. Conservation Compliance – Sen. Ben Cardin (DMD) introduced an amendment which would require farmers participating in the crop insurance program to comply with the same conservation requirements as those in place for participation in commodity programs. Conservation compliance affects most USDA benefits administered by the Farm Service Agency and the Natural Resources Conservation Service. Farm Bureau believes tying compliance to crop insurance could have a far greater impact on the safety-net farmers rely upon. Crop Insurance – Sens. Tom Coburn(R-OK) and Richard Durbin (D-IL) have introduced an amendment to require farmers who have an Adjusted Gross Income exceeding $750,000 to pay more for crop insurance premiums. Farm Bureau opposes the amendment as well as any effort to change payment limitations and means testing of commodity, conservation or crop insurance program benefits.


JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

Ask a Nebraska Farmer This series is all about answering your questions! Post your question to our blog, and see which Farm Bureau leader answers your question.


Here is my question/ idea - what if you had to downsize your hog numbers instead of rebuilding, which would be costly - would the proposed requirements for sow housing actually allow for more farmers to enter the industry? Wouldn’t that be a good thing?


There used to be a lot more hog producers around before large hog farmers/contract hogs - don’t you think the ag system would find a way to correct itself? ~ Eric

Thanks for the great question, Eric. I think the hog business and those who are forwarding these new proposals needs to grapple with this question that you raise: Will this new proposal change the ownership landscape of hog farming and will it help bring new people into the business? First, one must answer the question of what currently affects farmers’ decisions about entering the hog business. From my vantage point, there first has to be an opportunity. Is there a hog farm for sale or land available to build a barn with neighbors and zoning that will allow you to build? Second, there has to be potential for profit. I have been raising hogs for 20 years and in the last several years, even with paid-for facilities, there have been some gut-wrenching losses that I wouldn’t wish on anyone. Third, just like any business that is trying to attract new investors into the marketplace, there needs to be a period of stability and risk levels that are tolerable. So to answer your question from my perspective, it is unlikely that these new proposals will attract new people into hog farming for several reasons. Farms that will most likely be for sale will need to be modified at a high cost due to the new proposals. Also, I do not see zoning restrictions being relaxed because of these proposals, nor do I feel a new facility built to comply with new open sow housing will be any more welcomed to a neighborhood than they are currently. I have been watching closely and have not heard of a single corporate group offering more money for hogs raised under their new proposals. So history would suggest that because we as farmers do not set our own prices, we will have to absorb the cost. After some producers exit the business because of various inabilities to retrofit their facilities, the industry will produce less pork, prices will rise in the grocery stores, and eventually profit will return for a time. Because of this cycle and the uncertainty that these proposals will create, I don’t see the banking sector very willing to loan money to new people wanting to enter the hog business. In my opinion these new proposals will have the opposite effect! Hog farms will continue to grow in size (both by animal units and building size) in order to compete. Smaller family farms like mine may exit the business if the cost becomes too great and the reward is too little to stay in business. These new proposals, if adopted, will change the landscape of the hog business, but as U.S. farmers, we will find a way to adapt and continue to be the best at growing food for our growing world.

Mark McHargue

Nebraska Farm Bureau’s first vice president from Merrick County


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Nebraska Farm Bureau News

The Real Dirt

I laugh that when Matt and I were married he had to promise to love, honor, cherish and FEED ME REGULARLY! Just 10 days short of 16 years ago… I do not know if it is the years of serious athletic training or just my metabolism (quite probably both), but I am not an easy keeper when it comes to food. To put it in agricultural terms, my feed conversion (the amount of feed required to maintain my body condition) is not very good. I now share my love of athletics with my


Feed Me Regularly ...

Feed Yard Foodie By Anne Burkholder, Dawson County Note from the Editor: With more Nebraskans growing up in urban and suburban areas miles from farm and ranch life, there is an increasing disconnect with how and where food is grown. Nebraska Farm Bureau News is continuing a mom blog called “The Real Dirt.” We will have guest writers, who are farm moms, give their take about food production, food safety, farm life and how farm animal care is a priority. Blogs are meant to be educational, entertaining, concise, enjoyable and to the point. This column will give our readers trusted information about the people who produce their food. Anne Burkholder writes as Feed Yard Foodie and is a Dawson County Farm Bureau member. Anne and her husband Matt raise cattle on their family farm and love the personal responsibility that their three children learn from taking care of their land and animals.

JUNE 20, 2012

own girls (my youngest is pictured here) and other youth in my community by coaching and also swimming with them! Now that I am not a competitive athlete, my eating schedule has become more relaxed (I believe that my husband would say that my use of the word relaxed in this instance is very relative). However, I do not miss very many meals… Interestingly enough, my cattle are very similar to me in this instance. They are creatures of habit when it comes to a feeding schedule, and being fed regularly is very important to their health and growth. In order to allow them to maximize their God-given potential to grow and make beef, I need to be very consistent with the timing and the type of feedstuffs (feed ingredients) that I feed to them.

We begin to deliver breakfast about 6:45 a.m. and try to have all of the cattle fed by 9

a.m. In addition, we try to make sure that the feed is delivered to every pen with less than a 20-minute variability on a day-today basis. We also try for consistency in the afternoon feeding that my children laughingly call linner (a combination of lunch and dinner). The consistency of timing and care for delivery of that feed sets my animals up for success. So, what do I feed them? Wet Distillers Grains (the co-product of ethanol plants – what is left of the corn after the ethanol is extracted)… Rolled Corn… Ground Alfalfa… Ground-up corn stalks and wheat stubble (the roughage or forage part of the plants)… Supplement mineral pellets… All of this feed is put on the feed truck with a pay loader and mixed on the truck for breakfast and linner feedings… In addition to tracking the timing of feed delivery, we also track the loading of our feed ingredients to ensure that the cattle receive the correct amount of each type of feed for every meal. I believe that when you take cattle off of grass pastures where they can feed themselves and put them into a feed yard where

they cannot, that you take a personal responsibility to always offer consistently good care to each animal. Everything that we do at the feed yard revolves around delivering highquality feed and care to our animals – 365 days a year.

I am proud of my crew for their hard work and dedication – my three guys give of themselves every single day to help me to offer the best care and make the highest quality of beef. Their dedication is a testimony to their tremendous character. They understand the importance of feeding them regularly and make personal sacrifices to achieve that goal.

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Bailey Kobs Named Nebraska Agriculture In the Classroom Program Assistant Bailey Kobs of Lincoln is the new program started showing them in 4-H when she was assistant for the Nebraska Agriculture in the 8. She started showing sheep at the age of Classroom program. She will be 17. in charge of coordinating the Ag Kobs was a summer intern Pen Pal program and the learning with UNL Extension in Brown, barns. Keya Paha and Rock counties. Kobs graduated from the UniIn that position she worked with versity of Nebraska-Lincoln on the Clover Kid day camps and May 5 where she majored in ani4-H programming and arranged mal science. She is originally from and taught 4-H horseback riding Blair, Neb., and has a 20-year-old lessons each week in each of the Bailey sister and 14-year-old brother. counties. Kobs She started showing horses Her hobbies include riding and hogs when she was 6 years old and horses, fishing and hanging out with family.

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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News


Bicycle, In-Line Skating, Skateboarding Safety for Children It’s official…summer is here! And with summer comes more time outside riding bikes and skating for kids of all ages. It is a good time to remind everyone of a few safety tips. Buying the right bicycle It is important that the bicycle your child rides is the right size. In addition, consider the following recommendations: • The bicycle should not be too big or complicated. • Your child should be able to place the balls of his or her feet on the ground when sitting on the seat. • The bicycle should have a bell or horn. Buying the right helmet Although helmets can cost between $13 and $50, they can save money as well as your child’s health by possibly preventing a visit to your child’s physician or the emergency room. When shopping for a helmet, take your child with you -- a child will be more likely to wear a helmet if he or she picks it out. Helmets should meet the following requirements: • The helmet should be approved by the American National Standards Institute, the American Society for Testing and Materials, and the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC). Approved helmets meet stringent safety standards. • Your child should like his or her helmet (bright-colored helmets with stickers are very popular). This will increase the likelihood that he or she will wear it consistently • The helmet should fit your child’s head so that when the straps are snug, the helmet does not move around on the head. Some helmets are multisport, and can be used for inline-skating, skateboarding, bicy-

cling, or other wheel sports. Helmets that specifically are called “bicycle helmets” are designed only for that sport. Helmets come in many sizes and varieties, including many infant sizes. Proper helmet wear Helmets come with sponge pads to adjust the fit on your child’s head. A properly fitted helmet should meet the following requirements: • The helmet should fit snug, not moving on the head. • The front edge of the helmet should be two finger widths above the eyebrows. • Front and back straps of the helmet should form a V just below the ear. • Front straps should be vertical and the rear straps should be flat. • The chinstrap should be snug when your child opens his or her mouth (one finger should fit between the chin and chin strap when the mouth is closed). Road rules Since most bicycle crashes occur because the child breaks a traffic rule, it is important to teach your child the traffic and road rules. Besides wearing a bicycle helmet, teach your child the following traffic and road rules: • Stop before riding into traffic from a driveway, sidewalk, parking lot or other street. • Look left, right, and left again to check for cars. • If the road is clear, enter.

• Ride on the far right of the road, with traffic. • Ride so cars can see you, wearing brightly colored clothes, especially at night. • Obey all traffic signals and stop signs. • Look back and yield to traffic coming from behind before turning left. • Ride bicycles in single file. • Look for uneven pavement or other surface problems. Special Note: Try to avoid letting your child ride his or her bicycle, in-line skates, or skateboard during non-daylight hours or during bad weather. If your child does ride at night, make sure his or her bicycle has a headlight, flashing taillight and reflectors. In-line skates Even experienced in-line skaters can crash and sustain injuries. The following recommendations were derived from the National Safety Council (NSC) and the CPSC: • Always wear protective gear, such as elbow and kneepads, gloves, helmets and wrist guards. • Buy durable skates with proper ankle support. • Always warm up your muscles by skating slowly for five minutes or more. • Skate with knees slightly bent to maintain balance. • Practice stopping, which is done by bringing the foot with the heelstop forward until the heelstop is level with the toes of the other foot, bend the front knee, and lift the front foot’s toes. • Always skate on the right side of sidewalks and other paths. • Pass on the left and warn others that you are passing.

• Avoid skating in the street, especially where there is a lot of traffic. • Look for uneven pavement or other surface problems. • Check your skates regularly for wear and tear. Make sure the wheels are tightened. Skateboards Skateboards should never be used on surface streets. Even experienced skateboarders can fall, so learning how to fall safely can help reduce the risk of severe injuries. The following are recommendations from the NSC about how to fall correctly: • When losing your balance, crouch down on the skateboard so your fall is short. • Try to land on fleshy parts of your body when falling. • Try to roll as you fall, which prevents your arms from absorbing all the force. • Try to relax, rather than remaining stiff when falling. • When riding a skateboard, children should obey all traffic rules. Other safety precautions to take when skateboarding include the following: • Wear protective gear, such as helmets, padding, and closed-toe and slip-resistant shoes. • Check the skateboard for wear and tear. • Only allow one person per skateboard. • Do not hitch rides from bicycles, cars, or other vehicles. • Carefully practice tricks in designated skateboarding areas.

Water Safety for Children With summer comes pool time for kids of all ages. It is a good time to remind everyone of a few water safety tips. Drowning is the leading cause of unintentional injury-related death for children ages 1 to 4. It takes only seconds to drown, and often occurs silently when an unsupervised child is near water. Although most drownings occur in residential swimming pools, children can drown in just one inch of water such as in buckets, bath tubs, wading pools, diaper pails and toi-

lets. In addition, open waters such as lakes, rivers and oceans pose a drowning threat to older children. Parents are advised to take the following preventive steps to protect their children from drowning: • Never leave your child unsupervised near water at or in the home, or around any body of water, including a swimming pool. • Learn cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) and infant and child first-aid. • Do not rely on personal flotation de-

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vices or swimming lessons to protect your child. • Install childproof fencing around swimming pools. • Make sure you have rescue equipment, a telephone, and emergency phone numbers near the swimming pool. • Insist that your child wear a U.S. Coast Guard-approved personal flotation device on boats at all times. • Do not allow children to dive in waters less than nine feet deep.

• For more information about keeping your child safe around water, visit the Children’s Hospital & Medical Center Health Library. Children who learn to swim confidently become safer in and around the water. While swimming lessons do not make children resistant to the dangers of drowning, they are a good idea for anyone 3 years or older. Excerpts from: http://www.childrens and KohlsKeepsKidsSafe

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Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


Your Backyard Give it a Couple of Weeks By Andy Campbell June is one of my favorite months of the year. The kids are out of school, many of us have been working hard to get our landscapes and gardens planted, and the start of summer is just around the corner. But while June is a wonderful month, the best is yet to come because in just a couple of weeks it will change. As can happen in spring, our landscapes are flush with growth and color, our vegetable gardens are moving along nicely and everything seems to be growing strong. It almost seems like a magic trick. Plant the plants, wait a couple of weeks then POOF, our plants are growing. Spending time planting our crops – whether for food or interest – and then waiting to see how everything grows, to some, is like waiting for Santa Claus to come. Will our new plants grow as well as we expect? Will we have a bumper crop of vegetables to savor or weeds to deal with? Will Mother Nature send us enough rain? Will everything grow into the dream landscape we have envisioned in our minds? Simple – just wait a few weeks and we’ll know. THERE’S ALWAYS SOMETHING NEW Now that the plants are growing some of us could be fighting insects, weeds or diseases and we’ll be waiting to see the effect of our care. As some plants have bloomed and are finishing we’re waiting for the next plant to come into bloom. Now that the vegetables are growing well we’re waiting to harvest our first crop. Every time we think it’s been a few weeks and we’re done with one issue or enjoyment, a whole new crop of concerns and delayed gratification can happen.

Overall this whole “wait a few weeksâ€? idea can be both my favorite part and most hated part of working in the nursery industry. There’s always something happening in our landscapes and gardens. Something needs a bit of care, something is showing its beauty, some weed needs to be pulled or sprayed, some vegetable crop is ready for picking, and on and on. I can guarantee you working with a landscape or a garden is never boring if you don’t want it to be. And June is one of the best months to experience it firsthand. JUNE SHOULD BE ABOUT‌ June should be about making sure everything planted is ready to go into the heat of summer. Make sure your mulch is 2-3â€? thick to keep weeds down and to hold in the moisture, and that you are ready to water when Mother Nature doesn’t send us some needed rain, because she won’t give us rain every time we need it for our plants.

June should be about making sure your chemical controls to deal with bagworm, fungus, red spider, grubs, webworms, aphids, or any of the other insects or diseases we experience in early summer are applied or ready to apply. And it’s a time to plant if you haven’t had the chance or need to fill some holes in the landscape. Annuals to perennials, shrubs to trees, all can be planted through the summer with some care. June could be about fertilizing your plants, both in the vegetable garden or your landscape to keep them growing happy and producing well. And do make sure you are using the right fertilizer, for the right plant, and for your specific situation. By using the right fertilizer you will get the best results from your efforts. And June should be about spending some time enjoying everything a bit before it gets too hot. Whether it is sitting on the porch with friends, visiting our many local Farmer’s Markets, or just spending a lazy afternoon enjoying the fruits of your labors, please do enjoy the start of summer and try to enjoy everything you can in June because as we all know, in a few weeks things will change. Andy Campbell is manager of Campbell’s Nurseries Landscape Department. A Lancaster County Farm Bureau Member, Campbell’s is a family-owned Nebraska business celebrating its 100th anniversary this year. It offers assistance for landscaping and gardening needs at either of its two Lincoln garden centers or through its landscape design office. Visit for more information.

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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

Collaboration Key to Water, Food Solutions Lincoln — From the boardrooms and agreement with several governments to research plots of agribusiness companies make substantial investments in improving and the halls of governments to the tiny agricultural production in sub-Saharan Affarms of the developing world, collaboration rica, where the looming food shortage is is key to making progress toward the goal of most acute. feeding a world with a growing population SUMMIT TONE ENCOURAGING and limited water. DiNicola said the tone at the summit was “Some people describe this as a crisis,” encouraging, a significant shift from past said Jeff Raikes, chief executive officer of finger-pointing about the problem toward a the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, at the focus on solutions and how both public and global Water for Food Conference May 31. private entities have roles to play. But it’s also “an Graeme Jaropportunity to vis, director of come together Deere’s Some people describe this John and really work Latin Ameriin new ways that as a crisis, but it’s also an can Technolwill produce … ogy Innovation opportunity to come together new approachand really work in new ways that Center, said his es” to create company now will produce new approaches more sustainis about more able agriculture to create more sustainable than putting its that uses less familiar green agriculture that uses less water. water. farm equipment Raikes spoke in fields. Deere’s during the sec— JEFF RAIKES, chief executive officer of new FarmSight ond day of the the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation initiative seeks conference, to integrate hosted by the technology and equipment in ways that help Robert B. Daugherty Foundation at the Uni- producers produce higher yields with fewversity of Nebraska and the Gates Founda- er resources. One facet of this effort is to tion. By its conclusion, 550 people from 28 gather data and make it easily accessible to nations had registered for the conference to farmers in the field so they can make sound discuss the research, education and policy management decisions. implications of feeding a world whose pop“A lot of information is going to be generulation is expected to grow from 7 billion to 9 billion by 2050, while using less water for agriculture. Representatives of some of the world’s leading agribusinesses discussed how private industry, working with governments and producers, is helping address the challenges. The panel was presented by Global Harvest Initiative. These businesses are moving beyond their traditional purviews – selling seed or agricultural equipment, for example – to broader, systems-based approaches that aim to help even the smallest producers become better managers of their limited land, water and other resources. Natalie DiNicola, vice president of sustainable ag partnerships for Monsanto, pointed to the recent G-8 summit, where 45 companies, half from Africa, signed an


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free-trade policies and clear, long-term, science-based and business-friendly regulations, particularly protecting companies’ intellectual property rights on their products. Soper said companies base their decisions on where they’ll do business in part on the regulatory environment. Raikes said up to 1.3 billion people in the world live on less than $1 a day, 75 percent of them in rural areas. Addressing their nutritional needs is about more than putting food in bellies. Adequately fed people have a chance to get good educations and better health care and live longer, better lives, he said. Speaking to reporters at a media briefing, Raikes said he’s confident the technologies to improve these people’s lives can be created. The great challenge is to prove to small farmers they will work and convince them to adopt the practices and technologies. Raikes and Simi Kamal, chief executive officer of the Pakistan-based Hisaar Foundation, said it’s critical those efforts involve women. Women provide about 70 percent of agricultural labor in sub-Saharan Africa yet are not involved in management decisions, Kamal said at the briefing. “What we are moving toward is building a very strong women’s voice, especially in the decision-making process,” Kamal said.



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Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


$1,000 Greater Horizon Scholarships Awarded to Students from Springview and Minden Patrick Heerten of Springview and Mark Lundeen of Minden are the 2012 recipients of the Greater Horizon Scholarship, sponsored by Nebraska Farm Bureau’s Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee. Each will receive a $1,000 scholarship to be used at a college or university, Cathy Day, Farm Bureau director of special programs, said June 8. Heerten has attended the University of Nebraska-Lincoln the past two years and is majoring in grazing livestock systems/animal science. Lundeen plans to attend UNL to major in ag business. Heerten is the son of Ron and Sandra Heerten, members of Keya Paha County Farm Bureau, and Lundeen is the son of Brad and Deb Lundeen, Kearney County Farm Bureau members. The Greater Horizon Scholarship is awarded to a student or students ages 18 to 35 who are from a Farm Bureau member-family and who plan to study an agriculture-related field full-time at a college or

university. Recipients must plan to return to production agriculture. Applicants must demonstrate leadership potential through extracurricular activities and work experience. PATRICK HEERTEN Heerten, 20, would like to work in the beef industry in cow/calf production after completing college and plans to return to the family farm five to 10 years after graduation. While attending UNL, he worked part-time for GNP Farms in 2011-2012. Heerten worked for Patrick Barstow Angus doing Heerten seasonal work from 2008-2010. He has also been employed during the summers by Tri R Farms since 2005 and works 70 hours a week. Heerten is a 10-year member of 4-H and

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has served as club president. He also has been involved in the UNL Engler Agribusiness Entrepreneurship Program, UNL Block and Bridle, UNL Rodeo Association and UNL Beef Scholars the past two years. MARK LUNDEEN Lundeen, 18, plans to return to his family’s farm after graduation from college to be a sixth generation farmer on both sides of his family. He began crop-sharing his first piece of land this spring and hopes to farm his grandfather’s land. He hopes to be involved in organizaMark tions that promote Lundeen agriculture and continue his involvement in 4-H. He is currently working for Scott Nelson as a hired man. Lundeen also works on his family’s farm, helping his dad irrigate and lay pipe. After completing a farm safety course, he planted a quarter of land with a 16-row planter by himself last year. He knows how to run the combine and every

piece of equipment on his family’s farm and how to service the equipment. While attending Axtell Community School, he was involved in choir, marching and concert band, football, basketball, golf, American Legion baseball, Future Business Leaders of America, National Honor Society, the spring play, Keene Kids 4-H Club, Kearney County Shooting Sports 4-H Club, Kearney County 4-H County Council, Kearney County 4-H Advocacy Committee, church youth group, and sanctioned archery shoots. He is a nine-year member of 4-H and is an avid volunteer, helping with youth sports, the Kearney County Fair, food drives, Toys for Tots and much more. Day said the purpose of the YF&R scholarship is to encourage and assist young people to meet their personal goals of higher education. “The scholarship is designed to help those individuals who have a clear vision of returning to production agriculture after completing their higher education,” she said. Nebraska Farm Bureau Services is the founding contributor for the Greater Horizon scholarship.

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JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

AK-SAR-BEN Announces 2012 Nebraska Pioneer Award Winners Omaha — The Knights of Ak-Sar-Ben and the Nebraska Fair Managers Association, along with Nebraska Farm Bureau, announced the 109 honorees from 55 counties for the 2012 Pioneer Farm Family Awards June 11. To qualify for this distinction, members of the same family must have owned a parcel of land consecutively for at least 100 years. Since its inception 59 years ago, more than 8,000 families from across the region have been given this award. Each honoree receives an engraved plaque and gatepost marker as permanent recognition of this milestone. The awards are presented during the annual county fair of the county in which the land is located. The program is one of many supported by the Knights of Ak-Sar-Ben Foundation, which was founded in 1895 “to leverage collective business leadership to build a more prosperous Heartland.” These are the 2012 Pioneer Farm Family honorees: Adams: Tammy and Dennis Gentert and family, Juniata; Ken and Sue Parr, Kenesaw Antelope: Michael Henery and Heath Henery, Norfolk; James R. Kilpatrick, Neligh; Ray and Debra Schlecht, Clearwater Banner: R. Douglas and Joy E. Bolin, Harrisburg Boone: John C. Tisthammer, Albion Buffalo: Sharon DeNeui, Pleasanton; Greg and Angela Smyth, Shelton Burt: Hollis B. and Ann M. Anderson, Oakland; Dan and Lee Bowland, Tekamah; Henry E. Kriebel Farm: Elaine K. Chamberlain, Tekamah, and Carolyn A. Nordberg, Stromsburg; Jason Penke and Kelly Abrahams, Craig; Bruce and Prudence Skinner, Herman

Butler: Novacek Family, Bruno Cass: Roger M. Bornemeier and Laurel A. McReynolds, Elmwood Cedar: Kelly and Kelsey Konken, Hartington Cherry: Evahee and Andy Anderson, Gordon; Tanya and Eric Storer, Whitman Clay: LaVerne and Shirley Yost, Harvard Colfax: Anita Klitz, Dodge; Rolland D. Svec and Magdaline M. Svec Trusts, Rogers; Arnold A. and Loretta A. Tuma, Schuyler; Armella Vlcek, Omaha; Clarence and Dorothy Vogel, Howells; Thomas W. and Renae J. Vogel, Dodge Cuming: Gary Brandt, Lincoln; Melva Buchholz, Omaha; Ardyce Heinemann, Beemer; Michael and Rosemary McGuire, Omaha Custer: Calvin F. Dittmar, Oconto; Russell W. Mattox, Broken Bow; Daniel O. and Marlene Sasek, Surgent Dawes: Judd Norman, Lincoln Dawson: John and Janet Wightman and Thomas Hyde, Lexington Dixon: Dennis W. and Retha R. Gould, Newcastle; Ervin F. and Frances L. Kramer Family Trust, Laurel Dodge: Norman J. Heese, Scribner Douglas: Mohrview Farm, Inc., Omaha Dundy: Robert Paul and Norma May Thomas, Stratton; Frank Tracy, Ardith Tracy and Irene L. Gooder, Max Fillmore: Weldon J. Bornschlegl, Ohiowa; Marvin H. Peter, Sutton Franklin: Grady Koch, Upland Furnas: Jerry D. and Arvida L. Warner, Beaver City Gage: Doug and Cindy Parde, Adams Grant: William E. and Twyla M. Thurston, Hyannis


Harlan: Paul and Sharon Stevens, Orleans Holt: Kenneth J. and Brittney Koenig, Ewing Howard: Jim Sevcik, Omaha Jefferson: Flatung Family Farm: Sharon Kettelhut and Sandy Moss, Fairbury Johnson: Terry McAuliffe, Sterling Kearney: Abrahamson Estate, Axtell; South Winds, LLC: Steve and Julie Roeder, Kendra Roeder, Mitch and Jodi Bendix, Kearney Keya Paha: 3B Ranch Co., Omaha Knox: Foner Farms, LLC – Kenneth Foner, Niobrara; Kevin and Janita Kube, Croften; Linda Lou Moles, Bloomfield; Virginia and Burnell Von Seggern, Orchard Madison: William J. and Chera Lee Avery, Norfolk; Regan and Dawn Kucera, Madison Merrick: Joyce N. Kuhn, Central City Nance: Kush Farms: Louis P. Kish, Alphonse A. Kush, Rita M. Tate, Leonard J. Kush, Raymond J. Kush, Elizabeth A. Zakrzewski and spouses, Genoa Nemaha: Gary and LuAnn Bray, Johnson Nuckolls: Janice Tordrup, Superior Otoe: Bose Family Farm: Henry R. Bose, Shirley Cappen, Mary Schechinger, Papillion; Boyne Hallowell, Palmyra; Bernard Kreifels and William Bebout, Nebraska City; Larry and Gayle Royal, Palmyra; Joy and Verle Schroder, Palmrya Perkins: Jane Faught Potts, Elsie Platte: Lonne and Terri Groteluschen, Humphrey; Everett and Norma Hemmer, Columbus; Darrell and Patricia Janssen, Columbus; Peggy Schneider and Nancy Harders, Columbus Polk: Jane Roberts, B.J. VanVelson and

Terry Anderson, Osceola; Dale and Sharon Yungdahl, Osceola Red Willow: Kenneth and Karen Kircher, Idianola; Jerry Kircher and Donna Kircher, Idianola; Lawrence Lester Morris, Hastings Saline: Dennis and Janet Bartels, Milligan; Rachel Niemeier, Fairbury; Gary Niemeier, DeWitt Saunders: Joel and Terri Konecky, Ithaca; Michael J. and Barbara A. Vanek, Ann Arbor, Mich. Seward: Betty Plautz, Seward Sioux: Marie K. Piper, Harrison Stanton: Donald E. Frank, Stanton; Terry and Gloria Spence, Stanton Thayer: Douglas Bruning, Bruning; Russell Hinds, Davenport; Max and Karen Hinrichs, Bruning; Rob and Natalie Marsh, Belvidere; Louis and Madalyn Vieselmeyer, Daryl and Lois (Vieselmeyer) Nelson, Kearney Thurston: Larry W. Sunderman, Pender Valley: Clark S. Scott and Patricia L. Grudzinski, Grand Island; M.L. Jablonski Unified Credit Trust, Omaha; Czech 4 Lucky Stars, LLC., Burwell Washington: Frank A. and Patricia A. (Laughlin) Weberg, Wausa; William and Joyce Wrich, Kennard Wayne: Myron and Luetta Deck, Hoskins; Marilyn Hausen, Wakefield; Pauline Westerhold, Pender Webster: Jacob F. Petr, Jr. Family, Hastings; LaVon Rose Trust: Rose Marie and Rodney Willmes, Myron and Marlene Petr, Marilyn and Jose Requeira and Philip Petr, Blue Hill York: Gertrude Bredehoft, York; Donna and Neal Clausen, Bloomington, Ill.; Gerald Lutz, Fairmont; Marlin E. and Arlene Rempel, McCool Junction

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Channel Cat, Bluegill, Crappie, Hybrid Bluegill, Largemouth Bass, Grass Carp, Walleye, Minnows, Perch, Wipers, Koi DELIVERY AVAILABLE

Willow Lake Fish Hatchery 7580 N. Highland Rd, Hastings, NE 402-463-8022 402-705-2246


Proudly Serving America’s Farmers & Ranchers Since 2005. If you are a member of FFA or 4H, mention this ad and save $20.00 off a new scale.

Single Animal Platform Scale

30” x 84” with 4” safety sides and ramps. 5000lb Capacity $1190.00 FREE FREIGHT This scale can be legal for trade in all 50 states.




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CoC #: 10-155 & 090-010

“Build Your Own Scale” Kits 100 to 5000lb .................... $525.00 10,000lb .......................... $625.00 20,000lb .......................... $745.00 30,000lb & up......................... call Complete Truck Scale Kit, includes 80’ Steel Deck with Side Rails, Mounts, Load Cells, 160,000lb max capacity, under $30k delivered. Call us for details!! Don’t see what you’re looking for? We are a complete scale shop and steel fabrication facility. We build custom solutions for zoos, feed lots, processing plants and more. If you have a weighing challenge, give us a call!

Our “Build Your Own Scale” Kits are perfect to convert mixing carts, feed wagons, platforms or virtually any equipment that needs to capture a weight.


B & B Scales LLC 5386 Santa Teresita Dr. Santa Teresa, New Mexico USA 88008

Nebraska Farm Bureau News

JUNE 20, 2012


Lean, Finely Textured Beef Safe, Farm Bureau Applauds HHS Purchase Nebraska is one of only three states opting to continue the purchase of lean, finely textured beef for the 2012-2013 school year as part of USDA’s National School Lunch Program. Iowa and South Dakota are the other states that also chose to purchase the product. Beef containing the lean, finely textured product is about 3 percent cheaper than beef that doesn’t contain the product. Representatives for the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), which is responsible for purchasing food for state school lunch programs, reiterated the safety and nutritional value of the product in citing the purchase decision. Lean, finely textured beef is 100 percent beef recovered by a mechanical process

that efficiently and effectively separates lean meat from fat. Nebraska Farm Bureau sent a letter earlier this month to HHS Chief Executive

Office Kerry Winterer to thank the agency for its decision to purchase the product. “Your common sense response to the massive amount of negative and blatantly false information being circulated about LFTB is deeply appreciated by all within Nebraska’s agricultural community,” Nebraska Farm Bureau President Steve Nelson wrote in a June 8 letter. The product became a point of controversy when dubbed “Pink Slime” in a media report which resulted in a wave of misinformation in national and social media circles about its content and origin. Despite USDA reiterating the safety and health qualities of the product which had been in use since 1974, the federal agency’s decision to offer a LFTB alterna-

tive in its lunch program raised concerns in the agriculture community about furthering unfounded fears about the product’s safety. Nebraska Farm Bureau expressed disappointment directly to USDA in a March 23 letter. The loss of consumer confidence and inability of lean, finely textured beef to recover from the negative exposure it received prompted Beef Products Inc., the main company producing the beef product, to close three plants in Waterloo, Iowa; Amarillo, Texas; and Garden City, Kan. More than 700 people have lost jobs as a result. This story includes material from the Omaha World-Herald.


Jauer Dependable Genetics

Private Treaty Bulls For Sale

2 yr. old, maternally efficient, grass-type bulls. Roger Jauer ph. (712) 947-4357 �� ��

Energy Efficient, Stainless Steel Tanks


PO Box 101 • Hoskins, NE 68740 402-565-4420 • 800-658-4020

Competitive pricing, knowledgeable staff and superior customer service all add up to create a simple and enjoyable way to purchase at a great price.

Call or visit us today. 1840 W. Hwy 24, Goodland, KS • 785-899-5454 •

Portable Tub and Alley


Gates • Panels • Chutes • Irrigation • Pens • Portable & Stationary Feeding Tubs

Phone: 1-800-435-0532 308-282-0532 308-282-0533 Fax: 308-282-0533

Gordon, Nebraska


JUNE 20, 2012

Nebraska Farm Bureau News


Free Want Ads for Farm Bureau Members Farm Bureau members may submit one free Want Ad per month. If there is more than one category mentioned with the Want Ad we will split it into multiple categories, but it must be a combined total of 30 words or less. Ads are used on a space-available basis, subject to approval. Ads exclude real property (permanent structures) such as homes, farms, ranches and businesses. Selling crops or herds of livestock also is excluded. Send typed or printed ads to Want Ads c/o Natalie Friesen, Nebraska Farm Bureau News, P.O. Box 80299, Lincoln, NE 68501 or email If you would like to rerun your ad you must resubmit the typed or printed ad. Previously submitted ads will not be kept on file. Deadline is the 1st of each month. (No issue in July.)

PETS WANTED: approx 15 halfgrown or adult guineas, any species. Call Shelton, 308/383-2881. FARM EQUIPMENT FOR SALE: two drying bins, loaded, 14,000 Conrad 24’, 6 ring, 6,000 bu+, 31,000 GSI 36’, 9 ring, 21,000 bu+, both have grain spreaders, 3 down augers, drying floors, vertical unload. Call Cairo, 308/485-4464. FOR SALE: irrigation sprinkler package gooseneck, galvanized pipes and #10 regulators, electric panel box, “Furnac”, size 2½. Call Kearney, 308/627-5510 or 308/237-5602. FOR SALE: one-owner 1968 4020 John Deere, 9,200 hours with 3100 dual loader with grapple forks, $10,250. Call Imperial, 308/882-4660. FOR SALE: 33’ Air Motor windmill tower plus stub tower and anchors, excellent condition, $1,000 OBO. Call North Platte, 308/532-7252. FOR SALE: International 1480 combine, reconditioned, chaf spreader, 20 ft. cutter bar, $7,000 OBO. Call Byron, 239/877-2324. FOR SALE: loading chute, portable, $600; cattle panels, 5x10, weighing 85 lbs, $65 each, new. Call Loup City, 308/745-0249. FOR SALE: Ford 460 natural gas irrigation motor, clutch and cart, $675, uses very small amount of oil; heavy duty front mount bracket and tank for IH

1066, $75. Call Utica, 402/5342109. FOR SALE: Allis Chalmers pull-type combine, 5 ft Allis Chalmers round baler, both mint condition, always shedded. Call Pawnee City, 402/2741460 or 402/852-3148. FOR SALE: Tex FLO 8” irrigation pipe, gated 20”. Call Edgar, 402/364-2365. FOR SALE: 1930s livestock top rack for Omaha standard body, 9’x6.5’x5’ high. Call Syracuse, 402/269-2616. WANTED: JD 4250 tractor with 15 speed power shift, cab, air, heater and 3 pt. Call Syracuse, 402/269-2616. FOR SALE: reel drive motor for a John Deere Quiktach combine header. Call Sidney, 308/254-4940. VEHICLES FOR SALE: 1956 Buick Special, 4 dr ht, blue and white, new interior, rebuilt fuel pump, excellent condition, garaged, new lower price, asking $6,500, photos on request. Call Kearney, 308/627-8531 or email FOR SALE: 1998 GMC 1500, 4wd, extended cab, heavy half-ton, 5.7 Vortec V-8, 186,000 miles, runs great, very good tires, newly rebuilt tranny, rhino-lined, asking $4,000. Call Kearney, 38/4403066. FOR SALE: 1956 Ford pick-

up with 1981 Olds motor, automatic transmission. Call Columbus, 402/564-2493 or 402/276-1036.

FOR SALE: beautiful Cape Cod-style white vinyl pergola, new in box. Call Loup City, 308/745-0249.

FOR SALE: 1937 rebuilt Chevy truck, 1½ ton, stock engine, runs good, excellent repair, $8,000 OBO. Call Tecumseh, 402/245-0425.

FOR SALE: #127 Cub Cadet, 12hp Kohler motor, 42” mower deck hydrostat; #112 John Deere lawn mower tractor, 12hp, Tecumseh motor. Call Columbus, 402/564-2493 or 402/276-1036.

WANTED: 1960-66 Chevy pickup or truck in good-toexcellent, original condition, prefer low miles with original paint, interior, wheels and drive train, no modifieds. Call Lincoln, 402/483-0119 or email FOR SALE: 1972 Mercedes, 450SL, 109,000 miles, no rust on outside, runs good, asking $6,000. Call Omaha, 402/7337021. FOR SALE: 2002 Ford Explorer XLT, 4 door, sport utility, color black, 108k miles, $6,000. Call Lincoln, 402/7962327. FOR SALE: 2007 Dodge Ram 2500, 4 dr, diesel, heated, leather power seats, dual climate control, American Racing wheels, nerf bars, Rhino bed liner, excellent condition, $15,000. Call Pawnee City, 402/852-2323 or 402/9812323. MISCELLANEOUS FOR SALE: black step-assist rails for newer Chevy pickup, Philco console radio-record player, old. Call Kearney, 308/627-5510 or 308/2375602.

How Are You Connected to Agriculture? Products we use in our everyday lives come from plants and animals produced by America’s farmers and ranchers.

FOR SALE: 40C JD crawler with dozer blade, good condition. Call Blue Hill, 402/7712319. WANTED: Old “Round Oak” pot bellied wood stove, will consider any brand, but prefer one that is ornate, with lots of chrome, in good condition, not burned out. Call Blue Hill, 402/771-2401. FOR SALE: 2001 5th wheel Wildcat by Forest River, 27’, 1 slide out, new tires. Call Hooper, 402/654-3437. WANTED: sterling silver forks and knives, 1970s plastic and wood chairs and tables, old hanging lamps, old pottery, 1960-71 car parts, old advertising signs and more. Call Omaha, 402/639-9046 or 402/8954251. FOR SALE: 29 ft 5th wheel Holiday camper, furnace, air conditioner, generator, awning, newer refrigerator, spare tire and maybe hitch, $4,500. Call Central City, 308/946-2393 or 308/940-0837. FOR SALE: 500 gallon pro-

pane tank. Call Firth, 402/5250043. FOR SALE: 1985 Toyota Dolphin RV, $4,200 OBO, easy to park and drive, nice shape, engine 22R-E, automatic, for more info and pictures. Call or text Hoskins, 402/750-1521 or email FOR SALE: “Celebrate” commercial lawn mower, 48”, 17hp, zero turn with grass catcher, just over 70 hours, built in York, NE, best offer over $3,500, very good condition. Call Curtis, 308/3674208. FOR SALE: 16’ flat bottom John boat with 35hp electric start engine, with Shorelander trailer, new tires and spare, two swivel seats, trolling motor and battery, life jackets, etc, all in excellent shape, $2,800. Call Omaha, 402/346-2773 FOR SALE: two Shoel motorcycle helmets, black, large and extra large, full-faced and intercom. Call Sidney, 308/254-4940. FOR SALE: Weed Badger in row tiller, model #2550SS, purchased new ’94, used two years, always shedded, excellent condition, great for nursery. Call St. Paul, 308/7544181. FOR SALE: 1930s Monitor Top General Electric refrigerator, motor runs but needs work, interior very good, exterior needs paint, $200. Call Omaha, 402/884-0747.

RiDe BRAND foR the

The Best

fARMeRS The Best RANCheRS The Best LeADeRS The Best fARM BuReAu


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The lifeblood of America. They’re the humble heroes who rise before dawn and battle the elements. They put clothes on our backs and food on our tables. Their genuine values and tireless work ethic are an inspiration to us all. We appreciate all that America’s farmers do and invite you to join us in saying thanks at FB02-ML (3-12)

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4/11/12 4:24 PM

Nebraska Farm Bureau News - June 2012  

Best of Festivals, Fairs and Other Fun in Nebraska; Drought Conditions Raise Concerns for Farmers and Ranchers; Senate Debates Farm Bill, Pa...

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