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CORN TALK March/ April 2017

A Publication for North Dakota Corn Growers Association Members







THE CIRCLE OF LIVESTOCK ENTERPRISES SCOTT GERMAN, NDCUC CHAIRMAN We attended the Conservation Tillage Conference in December and enjoyed the keynote speaker Bryan Jorgenson from Ideal, South Dakota. Bryan is a partner in his family business, Jorgenson Land & Cattle, that operates a diversified operation encompassing Angus and commercial seed stock production, an advanced bull leasing program, no-till crop production, and commercial pheasant hunting. Jorgenson Land & Cattle received SD’s Leopold Conservation Award in 2015. Jorgenson Land & Cattle raises and markets 3,500 bulls annually through a bull leasing program. The farming operation covers over 12,000 acres of no-till crop production raising feed grains, forages and certified seed. Soil health is a top priority and they maintain a diverse crop rotation to ensure their soils are healthy and productive. To take advantage of the wild pheasant population, they built a 42 person, 22 room hunting lodge. The large pheasant population is due to the abundance of habitat for the birds - they set aside 800 acres a year that are planted as hunting strips to serve solely as pheasant habitat. What stood out about Bryan’s talk was how Jorgenson Land & Cattle has maximized the use of their resources. When they plant, they disturb less than 15% of their soil surface. They’ve installed fences around their crop land so they can put cattle on crop land and utilize more of their cover crop and residues. Conserving the soil has become a part of their life. They understand that the most valuable resource is the soil and have found that they can make the soil better and make a living. While their cattle operation drives their farming system, it is completely integrated. Crop planting decisions have to consider the cattle enterprise, which has to consider the pheasant enterprise. The cattle influence their planting


decision-making process - each bull consumes 45-65 pounds of feed a day and when their feedlot is full, this results in 170,000 pounds of feed per day. They produce all of their own feed, if the weather allows, and plant according to their consumption needs. I have a similar story with my own family and our 4,500 head hog finishing unit. This facility was built with a symbiotic working relationship with a company partner and has been mutually beneficial for 18 years. One pig will consume approximately 550 pounds of corn, 37 pounds of dried distillers grains and 100 pounds of soybean meal. This means the 4,500 hogs in my enterprise consume over 3 million pounds of feed per year. If we can add 20 additional livestock farms in the next few years to the State’s demand for livestock feed, consider the impact to our price for corn. There are a few common themes that I have heard when talking with producers that have integrated livestock into their operation. Many have said that livestock allows their farm to grow vertically rather than horizontally. It allows them to diversify when they can’t get a good price for their crops, they can make it up on their animals, or vice versa. I’ve also heard that livestock complete an entire farming system: grow the feed, feed it to livestock, and use the manure for the next growing cycle. All of these things are true - I have found that my hog operation has carried me through when crop prices are down and reduced my need for purchased fertilizer. The ND Corn Council has helped create the North Dakota Livestock Alliance with other commodity groups to help producers who would like to add livestock to their operation. Alliance staff will help with the permitting process, work with neighbors and towns, and identify which communities in the State are livestock friendly. The Alliance will work on developing an industry that currently has had little to no growth. We have waited long enough for the livestock industry to take shape in the state and I’m excited to see what the Alliance will do for the North Dakota livestock industry.

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OUR SPRING PRIORITIES CARSON KLOSTERMAN, NDCGA PRESIDENT If you are like me, you’re ready to move on from winter and pursue the new crop season. I hope you’ve had an enjoyable winter and are wrapping up your 2017 planting decisions. Let’s hope we can repeat or break last year’s record statewide yield of 158 bushels per acre. This winter has been busy for the North Dakota Corn Growers Association (NDCGA) board. Not only have we been involved with the work being done by our governor and state legislature in Bismarck but we are also working with our National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) and congressional delegation to educate the new Trump administration on the needs of our agricultural industry. In Bismarck, the governor and legislature are working on large budget shortfalls. This means that nearly every agency will be taking significant budget reductions. For agricultural funding, this means cuts to our research and education partner, NDSU. NDCGA has expressed the need to restore some of the proposed cuts to NDSU. Research and education are the backbone of our ag industry and few are as good as NDSU in this area. We have also supported the agriculture commissioner’s budget request for additional funding for the National Agricultural Genotyping Center (NAGC). NAGC is moving forward with new laboratory research that will be of great value to all types of agricultural areas. Legislative issues in the state that are of particular interest of NDCGA are related to issues that help landowners

manage and protect their property. A few bills we support are related to draining and tiling land, protection of property rights and agricultural truck weight bills that will help field to farm and market deliveries. A bill that NDCGA helped initiate is SB 2245. This bill will require a study be performed whereby land owned and/or managed by the State will be assessed to determine if it would be suitable for mitigation. The theory is to use State owned land as a mitigation option for landowners. On the federal level NDCGA is continuing our work with NCGA and our congressional leaders to educate the new Trump administration of the needs of our ag community. Our priorities remain: a strong crop insurance program, protection of the RFS, reset of the trade policy, regulatory relief, and starting work on the 2018 Farm Bill. We have also expressed support of early Trump decisions to review the WOTUS regulations and other reductions and/or review of regulations. Regarding the 2018 Farm Bill, thanks to all who participated in our Farm Bill meetings in January and/or completed the Farm Bill survey. We are using the findings in the survey to help prioritize needs in the next farm bill. I want to thank the new members of NDCGA. In 2016, we made a goal to grow our membership and we have. Please take the opportunity as new members to become engaged as we work on grassroots efforts on legislation and public policy. Also, don’t be afraid to contact one of the board members or our office staff on issues or ideas that you have. Lastly, thanks to all of you who attended CornVention on February 8. The event resulted in a record crowd and positive responses. Have a safe and efficient planting season and as you’re planning your summer trips, help us reduce the corn pile by fueling up with a mid-grade ethanol or E85.


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MANAGING NITROGEN, TIMING AND SIDEDRESSING Eric Nelson Territory Agronomist Monsanto Company

There are several schools of thought when it comes to N fertilization of corn. They range from “more is better” to “I’ve done fine at my current rates for years.” From both an environmental and economical standpoint, neither of those two examples are necessarily correct. Given the current economics, the desire to cut back on applications grows. If we are cutting back on nitrogen, it is important to consider the ways nitrogen can be lost, and when we should supplement. Here are some things to keep in mind for this year. Managing nitrogen (N) fertilization is an important element of input cost control and maintaining optimum yield potential. Optimizing N use in corn involves a balance of providing the appropriate amount of nutrient to the crop at the right time while preserving profit margin and reducing N loss to the atmosphere, surface water, and groundwater. Timing, rate, source, and method of N application plus N loss mechanisms, all play a role in this balancing act. Timing of application can be influenced by factors such as weather and workload. It is desirable to apply N as close to the period of rapid plant uptake as possible so that there is reduced risk of N loss prior to plant use. Sidedress applications are preferred over pre-plant, and pre-plant applications are preferred over fall applications in synchronizing N application to rapid crop N uptake and to limit potential loss.1 To reduce spring N loss when N has been applied more than 2 weeks prior to planting, anhydrous ammonia is recommended.1 When considering in-season N applications, the preferred method is injection of ammonia or UAN, followed by UAN dribbled between rows or broadcast urea.2 Sidedressing N applications can help supplement a preplant fertility program or supply N to the crop if conditions prevented N application before planting. The first step to


addressing potential problems is to determine how much nitrate-N has been lost in the soil. Nitrate is the most plant available form of N. To estimate how much N has potentially been lost, consider soil temperatures and days a soil has been saturated. Keep in mind that there will be more nitrate present if there has been a recent application of urea-ammonium nitrate solutions (28, 32% UAN) because one-fourth of the product is nitrate-N.2 Sidedressing N should be targeted for application prior to the V8 stage of growth, when the plant’s demand for N increases rapidly. Adequate N from V5 through V8 is critical because the number of potential ears and ear girth are being determined. Nitrogen sidedress rates are determined by soil nitrate test results.3

Nitrogen application rates based on yield goals have been a common method to determine the amount of N application.1 University recommendations advise to fertilize for normal yields, even in good years, because under those ideal conditions, the microbial activity leads to soils releasing more N to the crop.1 Nitrogen optimization in corn is a complex process involving many variables. The first step to determining which N plan is best for each situation includes understanding how timing, rate, source, and method of N fertilizer application can affect your farm. It is also important to understand how to prevent N loss to the environment. Finally, N managers must determine the amount of N that maximizes crop yield and profit margin while minimizing environmental losses. Sources: 1. Scharf, P. and Lory, J. 2006. Best management practices for nitrogen fertilizer in Missouri. MU Extension, University of Missouri-Columbia Publication IPM1027. 2. Sawyer, J. and Creswell, J. Nitrogen applications. Iowa State University Extension. NMEP7. 3. Reitsma, K.D. Nitrogen best management practices for corn in South Dakota FS-941, SDSU Extension. Doc ID 160203133509

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UPDATE ON GOSS’ LEAF BLIGHT IN NORTH DAKOTA DR. ANDREW FRISKOP - NDSU CEREAL EXTENSION PLANT PATHOLOGIST ELIZABETH BAUSKE - NDSU PLANT PATHOLOGY RESEARCH SPECIALIST The understanding of corn diseases in North Dakota has made significant progress over the past three growing seasons. With support from the North Dakota Corn Utilization Council, the cereal disease Extension lab has utilized surveys and field trials to update corn disease information for growers in North Dakota. Although there are several corn diseases that can be readily found in the state (common corn rust, stalk rots, northern corn leaf blight), Goss’ leaf blight remains the most important corn disease in North Dakota. Each year, at least one field in the state displays the aftermath of a Goss’ leaf blight epidemic. With this in mind, research has been conducted on Goss’ leaf blight and below are some highlights of this effort.

yield loss attributed to Goss’ leaf blight have been established at multiple locations since 2015. Preliminary results have shown that yield losses of 60 bushels/acre can occur when an early onset of Goss’ leaf blight occurs on a susceptible hybrid.

Prevalence of Goss’ Leaf Blight and Field Trials: Throughout the growing seasons of 2014-2016, a total of 225 corn fields were surveyed for foliar diseases. Field incidence of Goss’ leaf blight was 32%, 6% and 24% in 2014, 2015 and 2016, respectively. Goss’ leaf blight was found throughout the Red River Valley and samples were obtained from the western half of the state. Environment (humidity, rainstorms, hail and wind) and production practices (hybrid selection, crop rotation, tillage) have a significant impact on disease prevalence and can largely explain differences across years. Field trials documenting

Typical water-soaked lesions and freckles associated with Goss’ leaf blight.

Goss’ leaf blight is a manageable disease and the first step in management is identification. The disease can be differentiated from other mimics (other foliar diseases and environmental stressors) by carefully looking at the lesions. Goss’ leaf blight lesions will have a water-soaked (greasy) appearance and freckles will be found within the lesion. Once identified in an area, growers can use an integrated system of management that includes hybrid selection, crop rotation and tillage, when appropriate.

North Dakota Corn Elizabeth Bauske is a research specialist conducting a project on the prevalence and impact of Goss’ leaf blight in ND.

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TIPS FOR GETTING STARTED WITH SOIL HEALTH DR. ABBEY WICK - NDSU EXTENSION SOIL HEALTH SPECIALIST There has been increasing interest in learning more about practices that build soil health over the past couple years along with incredible commodity support for soil health. As a response, a panel on getting started with soil health was on the program at the 2017 CornVention. The goal of this panel was to have independent crop consultants and also farmers who are using soil health building practices in different parts of the state.

matter. The striking difference between the soil within the field and the topsoil in the ditch is a major concern and should be one reason to implement practices, like conservation tillage and increasing cover, that protect the soil resource. The field Mark sampled is below.

The lineup included: Lee Briese, Independent Crop Consultant with Centrol Ag Services from Edgeley; Mark Huso, Crop Consultant and owner of Huso Crop Consulting and Soil Sampling out of Lakota; Scott Huso, farmer from Aneta, and Terry Wehlander, farmer from Delamere. I moderated the panel since I am working and learning alongside Lee, Mark, Scott and Terry. When incorporating new management approaches on-farm, especially those that build soil health, it is important to establish specific goals. This way, you can determine whether the new practices being used are successful. Some of the most common goals for using cover crops and conservation tillage are reducing erosion, improving trafficability/ managing moisture, diversifying rotations and controlling weeds. In addition to these goals, the farmers on the panel had some very specific goals. Terry started out with the main goal of managing salinity and Scott was looking to make his farm more efficient. We’ll walk through each of these goals and give examples of what is being done by both Terry and Scott as well as how Lee and Mark are advising their growers on these approaches. Erosion control: Most farmers are aware of soil loss and what it means to crop productivity and long-term management of their farm. Mark put some numbers to soil erosion this past spring from a bean field up in Nelson County. He grabbed a sample from within the field and then also a sample from the topsoil that had collected in the ditch. He sent those samples off for soil testing to see how much phosphorous and organic matter was in each sample. In the field, the phosphorous level was 8 ppm and organic matter 3.3%. The topsoil in the ditch measured 21 ppm phosphorous and 5.7% organic


Moisture management, field access: Moisture management when using cover crops is a valuable tool for both sandy and high clay soils. Farmers with sandy soils are using residue cover from the cash crop and cover crop to maintain moisture longer in the season. They are building this residue with low seeding rates of cover crops (for example oats or barley) to use minimal amounts of moisture in the fall, but develop enough residue to hold moisture throughout the next years growing season. In high clay soils, farmers are using higher rates of cover crops (mainly cereal rye) to use excess moisture in the fall and in the spring prior to planting soybean. On average, farmers are using 30-40 lbs/ac cereal rye and then planting soybean directly into the cereal rye cover crop in the spring. This concept is called “planting green” and currently is not RMA approved. However, NDSU, consultants and farmers are partnering to collect data to make this an acceptable practice for ND. Having the cereal rye as part of the system in the spring adds another management tool, but it needs to be monitored closely to avoid over-use of soil moisture. Diversifying rotations: Lee has some great tips when it comes to using cover crops for diversifying rotations. He talks about the “five food groups” that we need to hit over a couple of years in the rotation. These include: cool season grass, cool season broadleaf, warm season grass,

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warm season broadleaf and a legume. Think about the cash crops in your rotation and then fit in cover crops. For example, soybean hits both warm season broadleaf and legume categories and corn is a warm season grass. So, in a corn/soybean rotation, you just need to find a way to include a cool season grass and cool season broadleaf. This can be done with cereal rye and radish, possibly interseeded into corn. It’s simple when you think of it that way and seems less daunting. Start with that and then include more species as you get more comfortable. Weed management: Managing weeds can be a big advantage of using cover crops, especially cereal rye. This is something we have seen on multiple farms from Wahpeton to Jamestown to Lakota. On Terry’s farm, we measured the weed control when soybeans were “planted green” (or directly) into living cereal rye in 2016. Prior to the first herbicide application, we found 10x the weed biomass where soybean were planted into residue only compared to where soybean were planted into cereal rye. At the end of the season, we did not see a difference in soybean yield. Lee has also seen excellent control of kochia and ragweed in Stutsman County area and Mark is seeing weed control as well up in the Nelson County area.

In addition, when cover crops are inter-seeded into corn, skips or gaps in the crop are filled in with the cover crop versus weeds. After wheat, establishing a cover crop can also help keep the field clean going into winter by competing with weeds. A valuable trip from Lee is to determine your herbicide program first and then pick your cover crops. Not the other way around. This will allow you to stack tools and get the best possible control while getting cover crops to grow with limited impacts from residual.

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Controlling salinity: Managing salinity with reduced till and cover crops is an effective approach for re-gaining ground. Terry has a field that he has been working on managing the salinity since 2014. He has 10 acres of saline ground on the north side of the field as a result of ditch effect salinity. Unfortunately he can’t drain the ditch because it is a wildlife easement, so his main option is to manage the water coming into the field. The remaining 100 acres of that field is not saline and he can get decent crop yields. He split the field to manage the 10 acres of saline ground differently from the 100 acres of productive ground. The 10 acre saline area has been in full season cover crops to build residue and use moisture. The 100 acres of productive ground were a full season cover crop in 2014 (because of excess water), barley followed by cover crop that included cereal rye in 2015 and soybean planted into living cereal rye in 2016. Terry is re-gaining ground, where areas that didn’t grow anything are now growing something. Lee and Mark also recommend splitting the field and managing saline areas differently from the rest of the field that may be producing a decent crop. Lee has growers who are seeding barley or cereal rye on saline areas and soybean or corn on the rest of the field. Mark is talking with his growers about using variable rates of cereal rye on their fields, increasing rates where the salinity is high and lowering rates where the field has low levels of salts. This way, they can use more moisture on the saline ground and have the option to leave the rye growing on the saline ground and out-compete weeds. Efficiency: Both Scott and Terry agree that reducing tillage passes has been a cost-savings on their farms. Scott will tell you that if his use of no-till and cover crops were losing him money, then he would be out there with the chisel plow. He has increased his efficiency on the farm by having multiple pieces of equipment running at the same time, where it’s common to see a combine running, the strip till machine and then two no-till drills to put down fertilizer, all at the same time on his farm in the fall. But, he’s always changing his system to make it more efficient. To learn more, listen to the panel again from CornVention at Visit the NDSU Soil Health webpage (ndsu. edu/soilhealth) to watch videos, check out fact sheets and see the calendar for field days and workshops.


ND CORN COUNCIL FUNDS 18 RESEARCH PROJECTS The ND Corn Utilization Council members approved funding for 18 research projects in the 2018 fiscal year at the Research Summit on December 8. These projects will be completed by researchers from North Dakota State University. The projects approved for funding are: • Technical Support for a Revised Corn Hybrid Testing Program, Joel Ransom • Beef Finishing Feasibility Study, David Ripplinger • Improving Salinity and Waterlogging Stress Resilience in Corn, Kalidas Shetty • Identification of Bt Resistance in Corn Rootworms in ND, Janet Knodel • Maximizing Soil Warming & Health Under Different Tillage Practices, Aaron Daigh • Corn Response to Sulfur Application Rates, Amitava Chatterjee • Soil and Water Management for Corn Production, Amitava Chatterjee • Evaluation of Corn Varieties to Plant Parasitic Nematodes in ND, Guiping Yan • Research and Extension Efforts at the Share Farm, Abbey Wick

• Managing Salinity With Cover Crops, A Whole System Response, Caley Gasch • Identification & Management of Corn Diseases, Andrew Friskop • Rye Management in Corn: A Large Plot Research Project, Kelly Cooper • Corn Performance & Nitrogen Use Efficiency in Sulfur, Jasper Teboh • Plant Available Nitrogen Mineralization From Mixed Species, Larry Cihacek • DDGs: A Value Added Functional Material for Wood Composites, Dilpreet Bajwa • Corn Production with DDGs as Fertilizer Source, Jasper Teboh • Biodegradable Films: Value Adding to Corn Byproducts, Senay Simsek • Use of Enzymes to Improve Nutritive Value of Corn DDGs & Silage, Uchenna Anele The ND Corn Council awarded $404,113 to the projects listed above. We are proud to sponsor this research and bring advances in production, soil management and valueadded projects to our checkoff paying producers.

COMMODITY ELECTION RESULTS Corn producers in Districts 6 and 7 were elected to serve as county corn representatives in the county they reside. One representative from each district was then elected to serve as the district representative on the ND Corn Utilization Council (NDCUC), serving the farmers of North Dakota by influencing how checkoff dollars are invested.

County Corn Representatives from District 6: Dickey: Scott German, Oakes LaMoure: Dennis Feiken, LaMoure

County Corn Representatives from District 7: Adams: Jordan Christman, Hettinger Billings: Vacant Bowman: Tony Pierce, Bowman Burleigh: Lance Hagen, Lincoln Dunn: Robert Ferebee, Halliday Emmons: Alex Deis, Linton Golden Valley: Steve Zook, Beach


Grant: Cody VandenBurg, Shields Hettinger: Darwyn Mayer, Mott Kidder: James Cusey, Steele Logan: Dennis Erbele, Lehr McIntosh: Anthony Neu, Ashley McKenzie: CJ Thorne, Watford City McLean: Paul Anderson, Coleharbor Mercer: Riley Schriefer, Golden Valley Morton: Elwood Barth, Solen Oliver: Clark Price, Center Sheridan: Vacant Sioux: Jarrod Becker, Selfridge Slope: Ryan Stroh, Rhame Stark: Duane Zent, Lefor Wells: Richard Lies, Cathay Scott German, Dickey County, was elected from District 6 to serve his second term on the NDCUC. Robert Ferebee, Dunn County, will join the NDCUC as the District 7 representative.

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NDCUC MEMBERS ATTEND US GRAINS EFFORTS IN MEXICO Scott German, chairman and Terry Wehlander, secretary/ treasurer of the North Dakota Corn Utilization Council (NDCUC) traveled to Mexico on a United States Grains Council (USGC) sponsored trip. The trip was to present the 2016 US Corn Quality Report to interested Mexican markets and sell the fact that the United States has the highest quality and quantity of corn in the world. The other goal is to explore export opportunities with Mexico for ethanol and dried distillers grains (DDGs). The USGC delegation which included Scott and Terry, first met with buyers of corn and DDGs, in Monterrey, Mexico. USGC gave a brief presentation on the 2016 Corn Quality in the United States. At each of the locations visited, Terry and Scott gave a presentation on North Dakota corn harvest and farming practices. They had good discussions with potential buyers of North Dakota corn. Currently, buyers in Monterrey are purchasing corn from Kansas, Missouri and Nebraska. The main rail system used to move the products is Burlington Northern Santa Fe (BNSF). The price to ship corn into Monterrey by railroad was $1.50 per bushel, with their ending cost of shipping corn being approximately $5.07 per bushel. The USGC delegation also toured one of the largest egg laying companies in Mexico with approximately 1.7 million chickens. In this operation, the chickens are predominantly fed sorghum and very little corn. At Torre'on, Mexico, the USGC delegation visited Rancho Lucero, a company that operates several farming operations in Mexico. They have two and a half miles of rail track

allowing them to hold two 110 car shuttles at one time. They buy 4,000 metric tons of DDGs per month, with storage for 26,000 tons of DDGs at their facility. Rancho Lucero purchases 20,000 metric tons (715,000 bushels) of raw corn monthly. They also operate a dairy at the Torre’on location, with 50,000 cows milked on a 17,000 head rotation. They process 50,000 liters of milk a day for various dry products. Rancho Lucero also raises beef cattle in their operation. Between the dairy and beef cattle, they feed approximately 189,000 head per year. Rancho Lucero is looking to expand their dairy operation in the next year, and are planning to add an additional 8,000 dairy cows.

DDGs being unloaded at the Progresso Port in the Yucatán.

The USGC delegation next traveled to Guadalajara, where they met with farmers and a feed buying group that meets weekly. This particular group used mostly domestic corn, particularly white corn. The Mexican government has a program to encourage farmers to grow white corn to make tortillas. The USGC delegation talked with farmers afterward and learned how grain is marketed. The Mexican government sets a price, the farmer has to buy a put option with the option being subsidized at an 80% level. Essentially, this is their farm program. The USGC delegation then flew to Merida, Mexico, in the Yucatán province. This area is highly developed in swine and poultry. One producer had 75,000 sows and was looking to double their operation in the next 4 years. Nearly all of the producers were looking at expansion. The

The USGC delegation visits the dairy processing facility at Rancho Lucero.

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US GRAINS IN MEXICO (CONT.) USGC delegation explained to the group that 40% of US corn goes to ethanol but only 1/3 of a bushel actually goes to ethanol. So approximately 12-15% of the US corn crop is used to replace 10% of the US fuel supply. The Yucatán is home to the Progreso Port, the second largest in Mexico, that handles 1.3 million tons of corn, 80% of which is US corn, and 200,000 tons of DDGs, all of which is from the US. The port handles over 2 million tons of various grains per year and is currently expanding its storage capacity to handle additional DDGs and soybean meal.

One of the main subjects discussed at each location was the impact of current and future US trade policies. The Mexican buyers and producers stated their concerns about the consistency, quality and price of US corn and DDGs. Groups indicated an interest in buying corn directly from locations in the US rather than through large grain companies for a more consistent quality crop. Because of the stated Mexican interest in direct buying of high quality corn, and since their return, Scott and Terry have initiated discussions with the North Dakota Trade Office to research a way to connect the Mexican buyers with local grain buyers in ND to make direct shipments via rail to Mexico.

The delegation at the Progresso Port.

The NDCUC is proud to support the USGC and their efforts to open markets for US corn around the world. Mexico is currently the number 1 importer of US corn. The Mexican market represents a tremendous growth opportunity; the ethanol market in Mexico is on verge of exploding and meat consumption is growing by more than 5% per year. “At the end of the day, people like doing business with people, not companies. The connections that the US Grains Council has throughout the world are vital to increase our share of world corn consumption,” expressed Terry upon his return.

CORN FERTILITY RECOMMENDATIONS, N CALCULATORS AVAILABLE D.W. FRANZEN - NDSU EXTENSION SOIL SPECIALIST Nitrogen recommendations for corn were completely revised for North Dakota in 2014, thanks mainly to funding from the North Dakota Corn Council. The new recommendations are based on regional soil differences between eastern North Dakota and soils west of the Missouri River. In eastern ND, recommendations for N differ depending on whether a field has been in continuous no-till/strip-till for 6 years or more, or in conventional/ minimum tillage. Conventional fields are further divided into those with high clay soils and medium texture soils. There was a difference in corn response to N within high clay soils and medium texture soils based on their historic productivity when early season rainfall was high. High clay soils above and below 160 bushels per acre yield potential under wet conditions had different responses to N, as did medium textured soils with yield above and


below 160 bushels per acre under a wet environment. A grower should review past yield performance in fields with high clay or medium textures and determine which yield category they would place their field. The new recommendations are not yield-goal based. Yield and N rate are independent between fields. A similar rate of N is required whether the corn is grown under a yield limiting environment (too dry or too wet) or an ideal growing environment. The N calculator can be found online at pubweb/soils/corn/ for laptop or desktop computer use. Recently, we have made available for free an N-calculator app for iPhones and Android phones. Search for North Dakota Crop Nitrogen Calculator in the app store to download.

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PHOTO CONTEST WINNERS The North Dakota Corn Growers Association once again held a photo contest in 2017. Over 50 entries were received. Photograph entries had to be taken in North Dakota, depict the corn industry, and had to be submitted by an amateur. Entries will be used for marketing and promotional purposes. All entries can be viewed on our website at Congratulations to our winners (below), and thank you to everyone that entered! We look forward to holding another photo contest in 2018 and receiving more great photos.

1st Place: Katherine Plessner, Verona

2nd Place: Mary Morken, Casselton

3rd Place (tie): Chris Erlandson, Oakes & Abbey Wick, Harwood

NDCGA HOSTS LEGISLATIVE SOCIALS The North Dakota Corn Growers Association (NDCGA) held a legislative social in conjunction with the North Dakota Ethanol Producers Association in Bismarck on March 16. The purpose of the social was to create awareness and conversation among agriculture leaders and legislators about corn, ethanol and its importance to the North Dakota economy, as well as thank legislators for their support. NDCGA co-hosted two other legislative socials this legislative session, one with the ND Ag Coalition, and another with the ND Grain Growers Association and Red River Valley Sugarbeet Growers Association. The socials were well attended and included great conversations with legislators to relay NDCGA priorities.

North Dakota Corn Growers Association |

NDCGA staff and board members at the legislative social co-hosted with the North Dakota Ethanol Producers Association.


CORNVENTION 2017 DEEMED A SUCCESS On February 8th, the North Dakota Corn Utilization Council hosted the annual CornVention at the Holiday Inn in Fargo. This year’s theme was “Growing Tomorrow’s Farmers and was considered a great success, with over 300 attendees. “Growing Tomorrow’s Farmers” featured discussions about the future generations involvement in agriculture. CornVention also featured a trade show that gave visitors a chance to browse and meet with a variety of vendors. Meteorologist Mick Kjar kicked off CornVention by forecasting the 2017 growing season. The morning panel discussion focused on soil health practices such as cover crops, conservation tillage and nutrient management. The panel was moderated by Dr. Abbey Wick, NDSU Extension Soil Health Specialist, and featured four panelists: crop consultants Lee Briese and Mark Huso, and farmers Terry Wehlander and Scott Huso. The panel drew many questions and received great response from the audience.

Meteorologist Mick Kjar gave a forecast of the 2017 growing season at CornVention. Dr. Bill Wilson presented on trade and worldwide commodity markets.

Dr. Bill Wilson from the NDSU Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics ended CornVention with his session about trade and worldwide commodity markets. Please plan to join us next year for the Northern Corn and Soybean Expo on February 13, 2018 at the Fargodome. This inaugural event is a partnership among NDCUC, NDCGA, the North Dakota Soybean Council and North Dakota Soybean Growers Association. The event will feature keynote speakers Mike Pearson, host of Public Television’s Market to Market, and Dr. Jay Lehr, science director at The Heartland Institute, plus various breakout sessions and a trade show.

NDCUC Executive Director Dale Ihry introduces the Soil Health panelists. Read more about the panel on pages 6- 7 of this issue.

In the afternoon, the Peterson Farm Brothers from central Kansas entertained and educated the audience. The Peterson Farm Brothers are 3 young farmers known for their parody music videos and agriculture advocacy using social media. They performed some of their parody music hits and spoke on how they have promoted agriculture to the general public. Their presentation received a standing ovation and a long line of fans requesting autographs and photos.


Several young fans enjoyed meeting and listening to the Peterson Farm Brothers from Kansas.

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US GRAIN COUNCIL UPDATE FROM PANAMA CITY The 14th annual International Marketing Conference and 57th Annual Meeting of the United States Grains Council took place in Panama City, Panama in February. The ND Corn delegation of Andy Braaten, Bart Schott and Rob Hanson attended the conference, with Kevin Skunes attending on behalf of the National Corn Growers Association. The conference included numerous speakers, educational opportunities and a visit to the Panama Canal.

A few more takeaways from ND Corn attendees: • 69% of all cargo traveling through the Panama Canal originates from or is destined for the United States. This includes roughly one-third of US grain exports.

• US ethanol shipments to Brazil are up 1500%, while corn shipments to Korea are up over 2000%.

The delegation of ND Corn members included Bart Schott, Kevin Skunes, Rob Hanson, and Andy Braaten.

The ND Corn delegation reported that attending this conference made them realize the importance of having US Grains Council offices located throughout the world. Even if individual offices aren’t creating new markets on a daily basis, those offices are developing and maintaining relationships with key segments of the market so that when an opportunity presents itself, they are ready to capitalize on it. Since markets and models change quickly, trustworthy relationships like this are key. For instance, today Brazil is the largest importer of ethanol, while just a year ago it was thought to be China. Having US Grains Council offices around the globe means we are ready to act at a moment’s notice rather than “chasing the markets.” In comparison to the size of the industry, the cost of maintaining our US Grains Council offices is actually a very small percentage of our expenses, and one that is easily covered by the creation of new markets.

Funded by the North Dakota Corn Checkoff |

• The US exported 1.1 billion gallons of ethanol last year and hopes to export 2.3 billion gallons by 2030. • US Grains Council is working to create an ethanol market in India. This will be hard to accomplish, but is a priority for the Asia Action Team. • US Grains is developing a “demand model” that will help us better decide where to use our resources. It is expected to come out this summer. • Currently, all Mexico ethanol imports are used for industrial products like glues and solvents. If they would change their fuel usage to 10% ethanol, this could be a 1.2 billion gallon ethanol market for the US. Overall, ND Corn delegates reported a positive experience traveling with the US Grains Council and further realized the importance of funding this organization. The world market has a large impact on each of us and it’s important we keep updated on its progress. Learn more about the US Grains Council at


ND CORN DELEGATION ATTENDS COMMODITY CLASSIC The 2017 Commodity Classic was held March 2 – 4 in San Antonio, TX. Commodity Classic is America’s largest farmer-led, farmer-focused convention that provides annual meetings for the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA), American Soybean Association, the National Association of Wheat Growers, the National Sorghum Producers and the Association of Equipment Manufacturers. The show had over 9000 attendees. The North Dakota Corn Growers Association (NDCGA) and North Dakota Corn Utilization Council (NDCUC) had delegates at these meetings to work with NCGA and other affiliated corn states to ensure that the North Dakota Corn priorities related to marketing, promotion, education and policy were relayed and discussed. Commodity Classic allows for NCGA and its affiliated state organizations to receive updates on current and future issues affecting corn producers and agriculture in general. These meetings also allow state organizations to review and update current NCGA policies and develop future priorities. The main priorities and policies of importance to the ND delegation were: retaining and fully funding the crop insurance program, defending the RFS for ethanol, repairing the ARC-CO program related to county yields, preparing for the 2018 Farm Bill, supporting and growing trade, reduction of federal regulations, and promoting farmer friendly conservation and water management programs. One highlight for ND Corn was the Soil Health Farming presentation that included Dr. Abbey Wick, NDSU

The Soil Health Farming panel presentation included Lee Briese, Terry Wehlander and Abbey Wick.


Extension Soil Health Specialist, Lee Briese, Centrol crop consultant, and Terry Wehlander, farmer and ND Corn Council member. Their presentation discussed tactics such as cover crops, conservation tillage and nutrient management approaches they have used to improve soil health. NDCGA was recognized for the highest numeric membership growth of 173 members among all NCGA affiliated organizations in 2016. ND Corn Financial Director Jean Henning, and NDCGA president Carson Klosterman accept the highest numeric membership growth award.

Another highlight for ND Corn included Kevin Skunes, First Vice President of NCGA and NDCGA board member from Arthur, ND, leading the NCGA delegates in reviewing and updating NCGA policies. Skunes becomes the president of NCGA on October 1, 2017. The week of events were well attended and of high interest to attendees. The 23rd annual Commodity Classic will take place February 27 - March 1, 2018 in Anaheim, CA.

Jean Henning and friends meet NASCAR drivers Justin Allgaier and Dale Earnhardt Jr. while visiting the Commodity Classic trade show.

Funded by the North Dakota Corn Checkoff |

NORTH DAKOTA FARMERS HARVEST RECORD CORN CROP North Dakota corn farmers raised their largest yielding corn crop ever, while planting the third highest number of corn acres on record. The USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) estimates the state’s corn crop at 516.6 million bushels, the highest on record. The statewide average yield was 158 bushels an acre, also a new record. National records of corn production were also set in 2016. US corn growers produced over 15 billion bushels, up 11 percent from 2015 on 86.7 million acres. The average yield was 174.5 bushels an acre. North Dakota farmers also set records in soybean, canola and dry pea production in 2016. North Dakota farmers annually plant over 20 million acres of variety of crops, many of which are in the top ten production of similar crops grown in the US.

ND FARMER AWARDED FOR EXCELLENCE IN CONSERVATION Joe Breker from Havana, ND, was recognized as the Good Steward Recognition Program award winner during Commodity Classic on March 3rd. The Good Steward Recognition Program is awarded by the National Corn Growers Association and aims to raise awareness among US farmers of the importance of conservation agriculture.

The Breker family operates a lodge in the middle of a scenic pasture on their farm, the Coteau des Prairies Lodge. This 13 bedroom lodge, opened in October 2012, host groups for events, hunting, fishing, farm tours, outdoor recreation and more.

Breker has used a variety of conservation practices including: no-till (37 years), strip till (27 years), cover crops (17 years), tiling (12 years), and rotational grazing including cover crops. He is involved in an expansive manure management program that utilizes manure from a large nearby dairy which he composts and then uses to provide fertility and build organic matter in his fields. Breker is a founding member of several ND conservation groups including the Conservation Cropping Systems Project that does long term no-till rotation studies and explores new ways to use cover crops. He also served on the ND Corn Growers Association board from 2007-2015.

Funded by the North Dakota Corn Checkoff |

Breker accepts the Good Steward Recognition award with his daughter Maria and wife Patty.


FARM POLICY AND BILL: ISSUES & OPPORTUNITIES CONFERENCE April 12, 2017, Ramada Plaza Suites, Fargo Organized by Dr. Saleem Shaik, director, NDSU Center for Agricultural Policy and Trade Studies, in cooperation with US Senators John Hoeven and Heidi Heitkamp, and Congressman Kevin Cramer The 2017 NDSU Center for Agricultural Policy and Trade Studies conference will focus on farm policy and selected titles of the anticipated 2018 Farm Bill. Our Senators and Congressman have been invited to discuss their expectations for the upcoming legislation. A discussion of the commodities program (Title I) and crop insurance program (Title XI) will identify current issues, possible program modifications, and whether there is a need for new programs. The session on Conservation (Title II) and Trade (Title III) will address resource and

environmental concerns, the status and impact of existing free trade agreements and the possibility of additional multi-lateral trade agreements. The final session will consider how past and present U.S. agricultural policies may influence future policies and challenge participants to consider emerging agriculture, rural and farm policy issues. The day-long conference is an opportunity to engage with industry leaders, experts and clientele groups in considering novel farm policy ideas for the upcoming farm bill, and its impact on North Dakota and global agriculture. For more information and to register, go to edu/capts/events.

FARM BILL SURVEY RESULTS The North Dakota Corn Growers Association (NDCGA) held four meetings around the state in January to gather priorities of farmers for the upcoming Farm Bill. Staff from the three ND Congressional offices were in attendance to answer questions and discuss priorities. Attendees at the meetings and CornVention completed a survey to indicate their priorities and opinions. Surveys were also available online. The NDCGA thanks those who attended the meetings and/or completed the survey. Results have been shared with Congressional staff and will be considered by NDCGA leaders as Farm Bill 2018 discussions continue with state and national leaders. NDCGA has not yet finalized their positions on any of these issues. Survey respondents had a very strong response of the need to retain a strong and viable crop insurance program. Programs and issues identified as the most important to farmers are: crop insurance, trade, the ARC and PLC programs, and the need for reduction in regulations. Regarding the ARC-CO and PLC program for 2018, responses indicated a need to retain the programs, however, the overwhelming response was to re-calculate ARC-CO yields by using yield data from RMA rather than yield data from the National Agricultural Statistics Service.


NDCGA Executive Director Dale Ihry, President Carson Klosterman, and Congressional staff: Tyler Jameson (Heitkamp), Tom Brusegaard (Hoeven), and Kaitlyn Kline (Cramer) held four Farm Bill meetings around the state.

The conservation program responses indicated that respondents wanted less conservation compliance tied to farm program and crop insurance program participation. A majority of the respondents indicated the CRP acreage level should be increased from 24 million acres in the next farm bill. The most important policy issues on farmer’s minds for the next five years are: retaining crop insurance, enhancing trade, and the commodity title. Respondents indicated interest in funding research projects related to soil health, water management and weed management.

North Dakota Corn Growers Association |

NDCGA AWARDS SCHOLARSHIPS The North Dakota Corn Growers Association is proud to award $1,000 scholarships to 10 student members. Scholarships are awarded based on academics, school and community involvement, and impact on the future of agriculture.

Our scholarships recipients for 2017 are: District 1: Tanner Kuzel, Lidgerwood District 2: Leah Schatzke, Wheatland District 3: Abagail Volk, York

CORPORATE SPONSORS Thank you for your support! EXECUTIVE LEVEL DEKALB DuPont Pioneer Tharaldson Ethanol

District 4: Claire Endres, Carrington District 6: Jacob Hauck, Forbes District 7: Hayden McHenry, Tappen

At-Large winners: • Abby Myers, Colfax • Michael Mayer, Mott • McKayla Jacobson, Finley • Zoie Breckheimer, Luverne

NDCGA HOLDS ELECTIONS The North Dakota Corn Growers Association (NDCGA) reelected three board members to their second terms and elected one new board member at their Annual Meeting during CornVention on February 8. Bart Schott (District 6), Clark Price (District 7), and Ryan Wanzek (District 4) were re-elected to serve their second term on the board. Board members can serve two four-year terms. Andrew Torkelson was elected to replace Darren Kadlec representing District 3. Torkelson will graduate from North Dakota State University in May. He farms with his family near Grafton growing potatoes, wheat, corn and soybeans on 7,000 acres. Torkelson looks forward to serving on the board to learn from other board members and professionals within the agriculture industry.

PRINCIPAL LEVEL Dyna-Gro Seed Farm & Ranch Guide Peterson Farms Seed Proseed CORE LEVEL AgCountry Farm Credit BASF The Chemical Company Cargill Legend Seeds, Inc. Monsanto BioAg Mustang Seeds Mycogen Seeds

Kadlec has served on the board since 2014. The NDCGA would like to thank Kadlec for his dedication and years of service to the organization.

North Dakota Corn Growers Association |


COUNTY CORN REPRESENTATIVES Corn Council District 1 County



Arnie Anderson

Corn Council District 5 District Rep. x

Corn Council District 2 County



Patrick Skunes


Jason Rayner


Steve Doeden

District Rep. x




Justin Halvorson


Terry Wehlander

Corn Council District 6 County



Scott German


Dennis Feiken



Randy Simon


Jordan Christman


Paul Smetana






Tony Pierce


Mike Muhs


Lance Hagen


BJ Wehrman


Robert Ferebee

Grand Forks

Greg Amundson


Alex Deis


Jason Schiele

Golden Valley

Steve Zook


Nevis Hoff


Cody VandenBurg


David Steffan


Darwyn Mayer


James Cusey




Dennis Erbele


Nick Schmaltz


Anthony Neu


Paul Becker


CJ Thorne




Paul Anderson




Riley Schriefer


Paul Belzer


Elwood Barth


Timothy Zikmund


Clark Price


Gary Neshem





Jarrod Becker

Corn Council District 4


Ryan Stroh


Duane Zent


Richard Lies







Jeff Enger


Bill Smith


David Swanson


Troy Haugen


Kevin Haas


x District Rep. x

Corn Council District 7

Corn Council District 3 County

District Rep.

District Rep.


District Rep.

District Rep.



Funded by the North Dakota Corn Checkoff |


NDCGA Board of Directors

District 1 – Carson Klosterman: Wyndmere (President) District 1 – Andrew Braaten: Barney District 2 – Randy Melvin: Buffalo (Vice President) District 2 – Tim Kozojed: Hillsboro District 3 – Andrew Torkelson: Grafton District 3 – Paul Thomas: Velva District 4 – Robert Hanson: Wimbledon District 4 – Ryan Wanzek: Jamestown District 5 – Justin Halvorson: Sheldon District 5 - Kyle Speich: Milnor District 6 – Chris Erlandson: Oakes (Secretary/Treasurer) District 6 – Bart Schott: Kulm District 7 – Anthony Mock: Kintyre District 7 – Clark Price: Hensler

ND Corn Utilization Council

District 1 – Arnie Anderson: Hankinson District 2 – Jason Rayner: Finley (Vice Chairman) District 3 – Paul Belzer: Cando District 4 – Dave Swanson: New Rockford District 5 – Terry Wehlander: DeLamere (Secretary) District 6 – Scott German: Oakes (Chairman) District 7 – Paul R. Anderson: Coleharbor

Director-at-large – Mike Clemens: Wimbledon Director-at-large – Jeff Enger: Marion Director-at-large – Kevin Skunes: Arthur Director-at-large – Larry Hoffmann: Wheatland

NDCGA Industry Directors

Vern Anderson –­ Livestock Consultant, Carrington Gary Geske – Latham Hi Tech Seeds, Enderlin Ray Kotchian – Prairieland Ag Inc., Fargo Tom Cook – Cargill, Wahpeton

North Dakota Corn Growers Association |


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