Dan Wheat

Central Washington Reporter
Wheat, Dan

United States, 11 Pacific Rim countries reach trade deal

- The Trans-Pacific Partnership trade deal still has to be approved by the U.S. Congress, where opposition is widespread. President Obama has to wait 90 days after agreement before signing the pact, and only then will Congres...

Ecology to order clean-up of grain-handling facility

- The Washington Department of Ecology is seeking public comment on an order to have the Union Pacific Railroad and Cenex Harvest States Inc., clean up a SuperFund site at a grain handling facility in Freeman, Wash.

Idaho farm leaders happy with new ag college dean

- Idaho farm industry leaders are happy with University of Idaho's decision to appoint Michael Parrella as the new dean of the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences.

Potato truck returns to Idaho from fourth tour

- The Idaho Potato Commission's Great Big Idaho Potato Truck is back in Idaho to wrap up another national tour.

NW agriculture groups welcome TPP deal

- Agricultural representatives say they welcome news that a TPP agreement has been reached but want to see the details.

Spud farmer uses crop to support grandkids’ small business

- Ronald Esplin says it hasn't cost him anything to allow his grandchildren to fill boxes with Ranger Russets from his conveyor to sell direct to friends in Boise and at the Pocatello farmers market, but it's helped them rais...

Airspace change threatens to disrupt Christmas tree harvest

- An airspace designation change threatens to disrupt Christmas tree helicopter harvests around Salem, Ore., but a solution may be at hand if federal regulators approve revisions.

$43 million in California fire prevention money goes unspent

- Some have suggested the state may have one eye on the courts, where it is fighting a lawsuit filed by critics who contend the fee is an illegal tax.

Wendy’s names financial officer as next CEO

- Wendy’s has been remodeling its stores and adding new menu items to position itself as a more premium fast food chain.

Audit: Washington state overpaid contractor to fight 2014 fire

- Auditors say the DNR acted so quickly it failed to establish reimbursement rates for a private contractor in advance and in writing, as is required by department policies.

Selected Western livestock auctions

- Trade slow with light demand and light buyer participation at the Stockland Livestock Auction in Davenport, Wash.

Western hay price report

- Many Oregon producers have decided to hold on to their hay for now in hopes of higher prices in the future.

West Coast grain markets

- Bids for U.S. 1 Soft White Wheat delivered to Portland in unit trains or barges during October for ordinary protein were 14.00 to 21.00 cents higher than week ago prices at $5.4825-5.55, mostly $5.5125, compared to $5.2725-...

California shell egg price report

- Asking prices for next week are 23 cents lower for Jumbo, 17 cents lower for Extra Large, 18 cents lower for Large, and 7 cents higher for Medium and Small.

National wool and sheep summary

- Slaughter lambs were mostly sharply lower. Slaughter ewes were steady to $10.00 lower. Feeder lambs were mostly steady to $10.00 lower.

National slaughter, feeder and stocker cattle summary

- Calf prices have lost a third of their value in just a few short months, and any class of feeder calves does not look attractive to buy as the bottom continues to succumb in this market free-fall.

Device helps take guesswork out of harvest

- Kevin Oldenburg, president of 2nd Sight Bio Science in Spokane, has developed FairPick, a way for fruit growers to more accurately measure the amount of fruit their employees pick.

Restoring grasslands with managed grazing

- Columnist Doug Warnock writes about the latest in grazing research.

Farmer finds woolly mammoth bones in soybean field

- The farmer and a friend were digging when they found what they thought was a mud-covered, bent fence post.

Researcher offers irrigation options for farmers

- As prospects of back-to-back drought years loom, Washington State University offers ways for growers to save irrigation water.

Wolf-plagued Washington rancher caught in the middle

- Northeast Washington sheep rancher Dave Dashiell says he's not sure which way he'll go — with his livestock or his involvement in the state's wolf advisory group.

CPoW drops out of wolf advisory group, wants it abolished

- A cattle group drops out of Washington's wolf advisory group and calls for its abolition. Another group, the Washington Cattlemen's Association, says the advisory group is finally beginning to make progress.

WSU to dedicate new plant growth facility

- Washington State University will toast the opening of its plant growth facility with an invitation-only ceremony Oct. 17. WSU associate dean and WSU Extension director Rich Koenig said the ceremony will honor a three-way pa...

Ironman record holder to promote Idaho potatoes

- A Utah man known as the Iron Cowboy, who holds multiple world records in iron man racing, will promote Idaho potatoes in a healthy lifestyle and raise funds for an organization that promotes adoptions of foreign children bo...

Report highlights dairy industry progress in sustainability

- Sustaniability is top of mind with consumers, and it's becoming increasingly important for the U.S. dairy industry to communicate its efforts in that regard.

University of Idaho ag college chooses new dean

- Michael Parrella will take over as dean of the University of Idaho's College of Agricultural and Life Sciences on Feb. 1. Parrella comes to UI from University of California-Davis.

Idaho Falls grower to join IPC board

- Idaho Falls farmer James Hoff has been selected as the newest Idaho Potato Commission board member.

Growers report painless water, energy savings through irrigation method

- An irrigation method developed to save water and power in dry farming regions has exceeded expectations in early commercial trials.

Washington Supreme Court approves closed advisory group meetings

- The Washington Supreme Court has ruled a county's advisory group could meet in secret without violating state law.

Idaho, Oregon onion prices higher, bulb size smaller

- Onion growers in southwestern Idaho and Eastern Oregon are more optimistic about this year's crop than they were in 2014 because of higher prices. But onion size is expected to be down due to a nine-day heat wave earlier in...

Portland daily grain report

- Bids as of 9:30 a.m. Pacific time; subject to change.

Bigger is better for this pumpkin grower

- Growing a giant pumpkin takes the science to another level.

ConAgra cuts 1,500 jobs; moving HQ from Omaha to Chicago

- The changes should create about $200 million in cost savings, with more than half of that realized by the end of fiscal 2017, according to ConAgra.

N.C. governor visits rally defending hog farming industry

- The group, which counts Smithfield Foods and Murphy-Brown LLC among dozens of supporting organizations, began after environmental advocacy groups and eastern North Carolina residents filed complaints against large-scale hog...

Despite bird flu, Minnesota still top turkey-producing state

- The USDA predicts Minnesota producers will raise 40 million turkeys this year, down 12 percent from 2014.

North Dakota wheat stocks up 3 percent from a year ago

- On-farm wheat stocks on Sept. 1 stood at 215 million bushels, down 19 percent from the previous year, but off-farm stocks totaled 107 million bushels, up 130 percent over last year.

Vineyards need to be ‘tucked in’ for winter

- The soil is monitored annually and a nutrient balance is achieved by adding recommended amounts of custom-blended fertilizer.

Bumper crop produces record olive oil yields in California

- Growers of olives for oil in California are seeing a big crop this year for the alternate-bearing fruit. The California Olive Oil Council expects a yield of a record 4 million gallons of oil.

Ecology fines livestock owner over water pollution

- The Washington Department of Ecology has fined a livestock owner $12,000 for water-quality violations.

USDA proposes more scrutiny for biotech wheat field trials

- The USDA is considering requiring permits for growing biotech wheat, which is more rigorous than the current system of notifying the agency of field trials.

Dry weather leads to higher protein levels in some wheat

- The effects of drought persist for the Washington wheat crop. Washington Grain Commissioner Dana Herron is recommending farmers switch from soft white wheat to red wheat, in which high protein is rewarded.

Comments sharpen Washington’s debate over manure lagoons

- Washington Department of Ecology compiling comments on a tentative proposal to regulate manure lagoons.

Bluetongue cases increase among wildlife, livestock

- Bluetongue virus has been found in 42 animals, including white-tailed deer and livestock, according to Washington State University's College of Veterinary Medicine.

McMorris Rodgers won’t seek House majority leader job

- Washington Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers has decided not to bid for the House majority leader position.

Timing important when purchasing equipment

- Timing can be an important factor for farmers and ranchers who want to upgrade their equipment. It's best to check with the dealers about interest rates, tax benefits and other factors.

Know your business, have a plan

- Before attempting to secure financing, farmers and ranchers should have a fundamental understanding of their business and a solid business plan.

Fall is best time to get irrigation gear ready for spring

- Fall is a good time to inspect hoses, nozzles, fittings and other parts of irrigation rigs.

Fix it or replace it — what factors to consider

- Farmers and ranchers need to consider whether it makes the most financial sense to fix equipment or to replace it.

Wolf panel discusses ‘wolf-friendly beef’

- A "wolf-friendly beef" label for meat from cattle raised under wolf protection measures and ways to help a rancher who lost a lot of sheep to wolves were discussed by Washington's wolf advisory group.

Winter requires preparations on the dairy farm

- The cows’ lives change with the season and that takes planning, provision — and extra work.