Sean Ellis

Boise, Idaho, Reporter
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Idaho’s wine industry receives second AVA designation

- Idaho's wine industry has received its second American Viticultural Area designation. An AVA is a federally designated wine grape growing region that has distinct geographic characteristics.

Idaho dairy producers see robotic milking systems as inevitable

- The use of robotic systems on dairies was one of the hot topics discussed during United Dairymen of Idaho's annual meeting. Dairymen said they are enticed by the promise of reduced costs and increased production.

Sun Ridge Dairy earns Idaho milk quality award

- Perfect monthly scores for milk quality earned Sun Ridge Dairy the United Dairymen of Idaho's annual milk quality award for 2015. The Nampa dairy beat out 12 other finalists.

Idaho dairy families induct Adrian Boer into their hall of fame

- United Dairymen of Idaho inducted Magic Valley producer Adrian Boer into its Hall of Fame Nov. 19 during the group's annual meeting.

FDA to explain food safety rules at Dec. 1 meeting in Portland

- FDA technical experts will provide an overview of the agency's new food safety rules, and answer questions, during a Dec. 1 meeting in Portland, Ore. The meeting is being organized by the Idaho, Oregon and Washington ag dep...

FDA produce safety rule introduces new standards

- FDA's newly released produce safety rule includes provisions on water quality, the control of wild and domesticated animals, the use of biological soil amendments, worker health and hygiene and equipment and tools.

Idaho, Oregon onion growers relieved by FDA’s final produce rule

- Idaho and Oregon onion growers say they can live with the water quality provisions included in the FDA's final produce rule, which was released Nov. 13. The industry was inititally gravely concerned with the FDA's' original...

Idaho farmers face uncertain 2016 water season

- Idaho farmers face an unsure water year in 2016 and weather forecasters are unsure whether a strong El Nino system will help or hurt.

Idaho governor pledges support for rangeland fire associations

- Idaho ranchers and farmers who are members of six rangeland fire protection associations have helped state and federal officials fight 83 wildfires since 2013.

Nearly a third of Idaho ag land is rented

- Almost 31 percent of farmland in Idaho is rented out by landlords and most of them are non-farmers, according to the results of a USDA survey.

Idaho wheat production fell in 2014, but quality improved

- Total wheat production in Idaho was down this year compared with 2014 but Idaho farmers produced more commercial quality wheat than last year.

NASS: Ag land values in Idaho increased 5 percent in 2015

- According to USDA estimates, ag land values in Idaho increased this year and have risen each year since 2011.

Lawmakers: Stop counting flood control releases against stored water rights

- A bipartisan group of Idaho legislators from both chambers has called for the Idaho Department of Water Resources to stop counting flood control releases from Boise River system reservoirs against storage water rights.

Truffles, ‘Idaho’s other tuber,’ start appearing

- The first person to plant truffle-inoculated trees in Idaho found 3 pounds of the expensive fungus this spring and other truffle farmers in the area hope to start finding their own truffles soon.

Average cropland rental expense in Idaho increased this year

- The average cropland rental expense in Idaho rose to $158 an acre in 2015, up $7 an acre from last year, according to estimates by USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service.

Irrigators, state square off over flood control releases

- Treasure Valley water users and the state of Idaho disagree on whether flood control releases from Boise River system reservoirs should count against stored water rights. Both sides say the issue is likely to end up before ...

Walden asks Interior Department where it stands on Malheur monument proposal

- Members of Oregon's congressional delegation are weighing in on a proposal to set aside 2.5 million acres of Malheur County through national monument or wildernes designations. Other Eastern Oregon counties are also support...

Hundreds pack gym to oppose Malheur County monument proposal

- About 500 people packed the Adrian High School gymnasium Oct. 29 to learn more about a proposal that would set aside 2.5 million acres of Malheur County as a national monument or wilderness area.

Seminar to address hot-button water issues, including WOTUS rule

- A host of hot-topic water issues are on the agenda of the Idaho Water Users Association's annual fall seminar, including EPA's controversial Waters of the United States rule.

Small committee reaches large audience with ag message

- A chamber of commerce sub-committee in Southwestern Idaho uses a variety of methods to help educate local residents and businesses about the important role farmers play in the area's economy.

Ag advocate in Idaho Legislature will not seek re-election

- Idaho agriculture is losing one of its main defenders in the Idaho Legislature. Rep. Gayle Batt, R-Wilder, has announced she will not seek re-election.

Ranchers oppose Malheur County monument designation

- Ranchers, farmers and others in Malheur County are opposing a proposal to designate 40 percent of the Eastern Oregon county as a national monument or wilderness area.

Malheur County farmers say they would love to be part of Idaho

- Farmers in Malheur County, Oregon, have wanted to be part of Idaho for a long time and say they have much more in common with their colleagues on the other side of the Snake River than they do with other Oegonians who live ...

Idaho dairymen, with cow in tow, deliver pizzas to stunned customers

- Customers who ordered pizza from an Eagle, Idaho, restaurant Oct. 16 were surprised to find an Idaho dairyman and a cow making the delivery.

Retired professor warns farmers about genetically modified crops

- A retired Purdue University professor is meeting with Idaho groups and urging them to support mandatory labeling of GM foods.

Chamber committee supports right-to-farm disclosure on land sales

- An Idaho chamber of commerce committee is backing legislation that could help protect farmers and ranchers from nuisance complaints.

Ranchers, enviros spar over grazing’s impact on Soda fire

- Ranchers and a major environmental group differ greatly over grazing's impact on the 279,000-acre Soda fire that scorched Idaho's Owyhee County and parts of Eastern Oregon this year.

New grain producers director excited to represent Idaho growers

- New Idaho Grain Producers Association Executive Director Stacey Katseanes Satterlee has experience in a broad range of ag-related issues.

Court rules flood control releases don’t count against stored water rights

- A special hearing officer has ruled in favor of Treasure Valley water users who contend that flood control releases shouldn't count against stored water rights.

Agricultural voice speaks ‘farmer talk’

- Though he started with no farming experience, ag lobbyist Benjamin Kelly, who also administers several farm commissions, has gained the trust of Idaho producers and now acts as their voice at the legislative and other levels.

Satterlee takes over as Idaho Grain Producers Association director

- Stacey Katseanes Satterlee started work this week as the new director of the Idaho Grain Producers Association.

Idaho ranks No. 2 in West in net farm income, behind California

- Idaho ranked No. 2 among the 11 Western states in 2014 for net farm income, behind only California.

Idaho funds yellow onion promotion in Mexico

- The Idaho-Eastern Oregon Onion Committee will use a $35,000 specialty crop grant to market yellow onions to Mexico.

Idaho NRCS to provide aid to wildfire victims

- The Natural Resources Conservation Service office in Idaho will provide emergency funding to help agricultural producers rehabilitate private land impacted by recent wildfires.

Tale of two harvests in Idaho vineyards

- Winegrape production in Idaho will be down significantly this year because of a bitter cold snap last November, but vintners say grape quality is excellent.

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.

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, 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...

November freeze zaps Idaho fruit yields

- Idaho fruit production is down this year due mostly to a sudden cold snap last November that damaged or killed a lot of trees in Southwestern Idaho.

Eastern Oregon farmers adapt to deal with years of drought

- Four years of drought conditions have caused growers in Eastern Oregon who get their irrigation water from the Owyhee Project to alter their farming practices.

Grants allow Idaho cherry, apple industries to promote

- Idaho's cherry and apple commissions have received grants that will allow them to introduce more Idahoans to their product and promote it through the use of social media.