Capital Press | Capital Press Tue, 21 Oct 2014 20:07:25 -0400 en Capital Press | Rice growers wrap up drought-diminished harvest Tue, 21 Oct 2014 16:53:42 -0400 Tim Hearden WILLIAMS, Calif. — As rice growers in California wrap up their harvest of a drought-diminished crop, good yields and more widespread sales of rice straw are helping them to at least partly make up for lost acreage.

The rice harvest was 85 percent complete as of Oct. 19, according to the National Agricultural Statistics Service. Leo LaGrande, a grower here, finished work over the weekend and said his yields deteriorated as the season went along.

“We had some fields that looked good earlier and we thought it would be better, but it didn’t quite mature to the yields we wanted,” he said. “I would call it an average year for us.”

But yields remained strong for Marysville, Calif., grower Charley Mathews, who also finished harvesting last weekend, he said. Good weather during crop development led to rice that grew tall and went flat, making for slow going during harvest, he said.

“It helps,” Mathews said of the big yields. “The yields might be up ahead of last year’s state average, but not enough to close the gap in our shortfall (in acreage).”

California rice growers are expected to produce 36.8 million hundredweight, down 23 percent from last year, NASS estimated. About 140,000 acres of rice went unplanted this year because of water shortfalls — a 25 percent decrease from last year’s crop, according to the California Farm Bureau Federation.

LaGrande had to leave about one-quarter of his land unplanted, he said.

“We thought we were very fortunate because some of our neighbors had to leave 100 percent out,” he said.

However, the yield forecast of 8,000 pounds per acre would be a 1 percent increase from last year and would tie records set in 2004 and 2008, according to NASS’ office in Sacramento.

The optimistic outlook for yields follows a spring planting season that was more drawn-out than usual because exchange contractors along the Sacramento River agreed to space out their water delivery schedules to maintain the right river temperatures for winter run salmon.

Rice is typically planted between mid-April and mid-May, with harvests coming six months later, but many growers didn’t get started until mid-May and were still planting in June. Those that were still harvesting this week ran into a rainstorm on Oct. 20 that stopped their work.

While farmers welcome the rain, their water worries aren’t over. Many are unsure if there will be enough water to decompose rice straw left in fields.

Willows, Calif., grower Larry Maben may pump water from wells into his fields after harvest if there isn’t enough rain, which is “an awfully expensive source of water,” he said.

“It’s going to be kind of a balancing act,” Maben said.

With not as much water available for decomposition, more producers are baling and selling straw “than I’ve ever seen,” said Mathews, who’s on the USA Rice Federation’s executive committee.

University of California researchers reached out to growers this summer to promote converting their rice straw into “strawlage,” a feed that the scientists say is on a par with a low-quality alfalfa. UC Cooperative Extension advisors said the straw would be a good alternative for livestock producers confronted with feed shortages because of the drought.

The straw can also be used for erosion control in forest fire recovery projects, Mathews said. While decomposition helps the soil, growers can make up for the lack of straw by adding nutrients before planting next spring, he said.

LaGrande said he’ll probably bale 60 percent of his rice straw, the majority of which will be fed to cattle.

“It’s huge,” he said. “I think the dairy industry is grabbing onto it more every year. And this year with the drought, some cattlemen who really never tried rice straw before are buying into it. At $300 a ton for alfalfa or $40 a ton for rice straw, you’re going to try it.”

CPOW plans 10th annual meeting Tue, 21 Oct 2014 16:01:28 -0400 Matw Weaver Washington cattle producers will look back at the last decade as they ponder where they want to go in the next decade.

The Cattle Producers of Washington hold their 10th annual meeting and banquet from 10 a.m. to 8:30 p.m Oct. 31 at Northern Quest Casino, in Airway Heights, Wash.

“This is a really interesting time in the cattle industry, because we’re seeing prices at higher levels than they’ve been in the past,” said Jamie Henneman, media relations specialist for the organization.

That’s partly due to a declining number of ranchers and a reduced supply, she said.

“It’s good news, but it’s also kind of a wake-up call,” she said. “We need to have young people entering the industry.”

The best candidates are the kids who grew up on the ranch, so CPOW hopes to focus on enabling the next generation to stay on the farm. Related items on the agenda include tax preferences when transferring ownership or use of canola meal as a feed supplement.

Many ranchers are at the point where they need to consider what the next decade or so will hold for their operations.

“If you want to stay in business, you’ve got to be proactive on some critical issues,” Henneman said. “Advocacy is becoming increasingly important.

“Heavy” issues like wolves and regulations are affecting the industry, but Henneman said the focus of the meeting will be lighter.

“We wanted this evening to be a little bit more fun and a little less depressing,” she said. “Of course those things need to be discussed, but for this meeting our goal is to get people together to have a great time.”

The day-long meeting includes a cow plop during the lunch hour.

“I bet that’s the first time the casino’s ever seen that,” Henneman said.

The agenda includes presentations from the Washington Beef Commission, Washington Department of Agriculture; Mike Thoren, CEO of JBS Five Rivers Cattle Feeding LLC and James Robb, senior agricultural economist for the Livestock Marketing Information Center.

CPOW will elect a new president, as Hunters, Wash., rancher Dave Dashiell reaches the end of his term.

There are roughly 200 members in CPOW. Henneman hopes they will all attend the meeting. She’d also like to connect with ranchers in areas where CPOW doesn’t have a strong presence and build coalitions.

“It’s a really good opportunity to reflect on what was accomplished in the last 10 years, and look forward to the next 10,” she said. “Celebrate the fact that you’re still here, that you’ve worked hard, and do an assessment of where you want to go in the future.”

Irrigation district to convert wells to surface water Tue, 21 Oct 2014 15:56:43 -0400 John O’Connell RUPERT, Idaho — Engineering is underway on an irrigation district’s plan to build a pumping plant and pipeline to supplement rapidly declining wells with surface water in an overtaxed portion of the Eastern Snake Plain Aquifer.

A & B Irrigation District hopes to pipe 4,500 acre feet to supplement about 1,500 groundwater-irrigated acres with surface water, in years when surface water is available. The district, which supplies water to 65,000 acres of well-irrigated land and 17,000 surface-irrigated acres in Jerome and Minidoka counties, expects the pipeline will make it possible to shut down six to eight under-performing wells. The wells could still be used if no surface water rights are found to supply the new pipeline.

The pipeline will also supply additional water to 4,500 acres of farm land that are currently irrigated by surface water but haven’t been getting adequate deliveries during peak months. A & B manager Dan Temple explained the current canal has had additional constraints on it since the mid-1990s, when the district abandoned other declining wells and switched to surface water.

The USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service is doing the design work on the planned pipeline and pumping plant and has awarded the project $3.8 million in funding previously made available by the former Agricultural Water Enhancement Program for water conversion projects. Earlier this fall, the Idaho Water Resources Board also approved a $7 million loan for the project. Temple said construction should commence next fall, with the goal for completion by 2016. The pipeline will divert water 8 miles west of Burley and run 8 miles perpendicular to the Snake River.

Temple said A & B may use some of its current 137,000 acre feet of storage, rent from the Water District 1 Rental Pool or lease other user’s storage to supply the pipeline.

Temple said the level of the aquifer’s western portion has dropped 19 feet since 1999. Three years ago, the district spent $2 million to purchase its own rotary drill rig and added a licensed driller to its staff to deepen some of its 180 active wells.

“We have been drilling nonstop, and we’re not done yet,” Temple said.

He said they’ve also invested about $20 million “chasing water” since 1990, and the district pursued a failed water call against junior groundwater users.

Heyburn farmer Clay Harrison, a surface water irrigator, said inadequate peak-season irrigation deliveries from the overburdened existing canal have affected his malt barley quality and beet and garden bean seed yields.

“We’ve got quite a large area where the district is struggling to produce enough water from the wells,” Harrison said. “They’ve drilled three to five wells there and gone down to 500 feet and found nothing but dust.”

Elliot Traher, NRCS district conservationist for Cassia and Minidoka counties, said projects putting available surface water to better use and turning off wells are becoming increasing common throughout the aquifer.

“We’ve got to look at water conservation in many different areas across the board when it comes to farming,” Traher said. “I think everyone has a certain responsibility for water conservation.”

Cash dairy markets cause head-scratching Tue, 21 Oct 2014 14:39:19 -0400 LEE MIELKE Cash cheese prices were “mixed” to say the least last week.

The 40-pound block Cheddar saw a second week of strength on bids and closed Friday at $2.2875 per pound, up 9 cents on the week and an astounding 43 cents above a year ago. They jumped another 3 3/4-cents Monday on an unfilled bid but were unchanged Tuesday, holding at $2.3250 per pound.

The 500-pound Cheddar barrels were on a roller coaster, jumping 6 1/2 cents last Tuesday, but lost 7 cents on Wednesday, a half-cent Thursday, and 2 more cents Friday to close at $2.07, down 3 cents on the week, the fourth consecutive week of decline, but 30 3/4-cents above a year ago. They jumped 3 3/4-cents Monday only to give it back and then some Tuesday, plunging 7 1/4-cents, to $2.0350 per pound, a whopping 29 cents below the blocks, a spread that normally averages 3-5 cents.

Last week saw a continued meltdown on butter as the bleeding turned into hemorrhaging. The spot closed Friday at $2.00 per pound, a level not seen since late April 2014, down 80 1/2-cents on the week (the fourth week of decline and largest in 18 years), but still 51 3/4-cents above a year ago. But the butter rallied Monday and crept up 1 1/2 cents, the first positive move since it set its record of $3.06 on Sept. 19. It tacked on another 1 3/4-cents Tuesday, hitting $2.0325 per pound. It had plunged a total of $1.06 since setting its $3.06 record.

Cash Grade A nonfat dry milk held all week at $1.38 per pound, where it had been since Oct. 8, but the powder plunged 6 cents Monday and gave up another penny Tuesday, closing at $1.31.

U.S. dairy farmers got the message. Record high milk prices and low feed costs signaled them to (pardon the pun) “milk ’em for all their worth.” They added cows and got more out of every one.

The Agriculture Department’s latest Milk Production report shows September output in the top 23 producing states at 15.49 billion pounds, up 4.1 percent from August 2013 and the ninth consecutive month output was above a year ago. The 50-state total, at 16.47 billion pounds, was up 4.0 percent from a year ago.

Revisions reduced the original August 23-state estimate by 3 million pounds, now reported at 16.2 billion pounds, up 2.6 percent from a year ago.

August cow numbers in the 23 states, at 8.59 million head, were up 4,000 head from August and 78,000 more than a year ago. The 50-state count, at 9.27 million head, is up 2,000 from July and 59,000 more than a year ago.

August output per cow in the 23 states averaged 1,804 pounds, up 56 pounds from September 2013, and the highest production per cow for the month of September since the 23 State series began in 2003.

California, at 3.29 million pounds, was up a whopping 2.9 percent from a year ago, thanks to a 55-pound gain per cow, though cow numbers were down 2,000 head. Wisconsin, at 2.29 million pounds, was up 3.2 percent, on a 60-pound gain per cow, and cow numbers were also off 2,000.

Idaho was up 3.4 percent on a 40-pound gain per cow and 7,000 more cows. New York was up a hefty 4.5 percent, thanks to a 65-pound gain per cow and 5,000 more cows. Pennsylvania was up 3.5 percent, on a 60-pound gain per cow but cow numbers were down 2,000. Minnesota was up 1.5 percent, despite a loss of 3,000 cows, but output per cow was up 35 pounds.

The biggest increase was in Colorado, up 10.8 percent, followed by Texas, up 9.6 percent, thanks to 30,000 more cows and a 45-pound gain per cow. Kansas was next, up 9.2 percent. Illinois was the only state in the top 23 showing a loss, off 0.7 percent.

Checking some other key players, Arizona was up 6.5 percent, thanks to a 60-pound gain per cow and 5,000 more cows. Michigan was up 6.9 percent, also on a 60-pound gain per cow but with 14,000 more cows than a year ago. New Mexico was up 3.4 percent, on a 60-pound gain per cow and 1,000 more cows. Washington state registered a 5.5 percent gain from a year ago, thanks to a 50-pound gain per cow and 7,000 more cows.

Last week’s Global Dairy Trade auction saw the weighted average for all products inch up 1.4 percent, after dropping 7.3 percent in the Oct. 1 event. This is the first uptick since the short-lived gain on June 17. The price index has pretty much seen declines since reaching its high on Feb. 4. The industry will watch to see if the turnaround is sustained in the next session, which is Nov. 4.

The uptick was led by a 7.4 percent increase in anhydrous milkfat, which was down 5 percent in the last event. Sweet whey powder was next, up 4.3 percent, following a 9.3 percent plunge last time. Butter was up 3.9 percent following a 6.6 percent drop last time. Whole milk powder brought up the rear, up 3.1 percent, after a 10 percent plunge in the last event.

Idaho dry bean industry sets sights on Costa Rica Tue, 21 Oct 2014 14:26:44 -0400 Sean Ellis BOISE ­— The Idaho Bean Commission will use an $18,000 specialty crop grant to try to help the state’s dry bean industry make inroads into Costa Rica.

The Central American nation of 4.6 million people is one of the Idaho industry’s most promising markets, said IBC member Don Tolmie.

“That Costa Rica project probably has as much potential to increase our exports of dry bean seed as anything we’ve ever attempted,” said Tolmie, production manager for Treasure Valley Seed Co.

Idaho has a strict testing program that certifies bean seed grown in the state is disease-free and is the leading bean seed supplier in the nation.

Costa Rican farmers grow a lot of dry beans but that crop faces significant disease pressure there, an issue Idaho can help solve.

“They need a shot in the arm,” Tolmie said. “A good crop of dry beans begins with good seed.”

During a trade mission in February, Tolmie and fellow IBC member John Dean met with representatives of Walmart in Costa Rica and a company that supplies them with red and black beans.

Both companies are interested in certified Idaho seed, Tolmie said, and the project will help Idaho nurture a relationship with them.

The grant, supplied by the Idaho State Department of Agriculture, will allow the commission to take preferred local varieties in Costa Rica that face substantial disease pressure and grown them in a disease-free environment in Idaho.

After that seed is certified, it will be grown in trial plots in Costa Rica so growers there can see first-had the benefits of using certified Idaho seed, said IBC Administrator Andi Woolf.

She said the project could pay off big for Idaho’s dry bean industry. “Costa Rica is a very promising market for us.”

The quality issues Costa Rican bean farmers face are serious and they are clamoring for an answer, Tolmie said.

But he also said growers there don’t fully grasp how complex the process of certifying bean seed is and Idaho’s industry needs to prove to them the value of investing in certified seed.

“They’re begging for clean seed but they don’t understand how complex clean seed is,” he said. “We’re going to have to help educate these folks about that process.”

Yellow spud varieties make debut Tue, 21 Oct 2014 12:56:17 -0400 John O’Connell IDAHO FALLS, Idaho — Yellow is becoming the new gold standard for specialty potato varieties, Northwestern spud industry experts say.

At the Produce Marketing Association’s Fresh Summit Convention from Oct. 17-19 in Anaheim, Calif., where produce companies go to show off their latest innovations, Idaho Falls-based Potandon Produce unveiled two new yellow potato varieties.

“We have seen explosive growth in the yellow potato subcategory in our whole potato group,” said Ralph Schwartz, Potandon’s vice president of marketing sales and innovation.

In recent years, Schwartz said yellow potatoes have represented about half of the variety development efforts of Potandon’s breeding division, SunRain Potato Varieties.

Schwartz said double-digit growth gains by the yellow category have led Potandon to believe that consumer preferences are shifting. Yellows still remain a small percentage of the overall potato crop, representing just 2 percent of Idaho’s 2014 fall potato acres and 3 percent of fall acreage in Oregon and Washington.

“We felt our greatest propensity for success was to ramp up the ones that are yellow potatoes,” Schwartz said.

Klondike Royale is high-yielding with yellow flesh and yellow skin bearing purple “kiss” marks. The packaging features purple fairies kissing the potato. Schwartz said the spud also stores well. Klondike Smiley has yellow flesh and light-pink skin with yellow markings that resemble smiling mouths. Schwartz explained it will be marketed as a child-friendly product and will feature Potandon’s first bag with Green Giant’s more youthful mascot, Sprout. Klondike Smiley will also come in microwavable packaging. Potandon will start shipping the two new varieties in November.

“The trade has really worked hard at bringing the yellow to the marketplace with better quality,” Schwartz said. “We expect the yellow potato category to continue to grow. At this point, nobody knows when it’s going to peak.”

Company representatives who helped evaluate Oregon States University’s first-year potato crosses showed a strong preference for specialty spuds with yellow flesh, said OSU breeder Sagar Sathuvalli. He tried to stimulate interest in a specialty spud with white flesh, but the industry representatives assured him white-fleshed specialty spuds are no longer marketable.

“If they see attractive mosaic patterns, they’re picking those up, and yellow flesh and yellow skin they’re picking up,” Sathuvalli said. “In every case they’re picking up the yellow flesh.”

At the retail level, reds have been promoted longer and still enjoy stronger demand than yellows, but interest in yellows is growing rapidly, said Ken Tubman, the Idaho Potato Commission’s marketing director for the Northeast and Canada.

“I think the golds are starting to come stronger,” Tubman said. “I see it ever improving.”

Jonathon Whitworth, a plant pathologist involved in the potato breeding program at the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service in Aberdeen, Idaho, has also noticed growth in yellows, both in produce aisles and within the Tri-State Potato Breeding Program. But Whitworth cautions, “It’s going to take the right varieties to fit that market, and overproduction will saturate it.”

Government Contractor Holds Listening Session on Federal Insurance for Specialty Crops from Food Safety and Contamination Issues. Tue, 21 Oct 2014 12:47:02 -0400 One action in the Agricultural Act of 2014 (Public Law 113-79) was the inclusion of an amendment to Section 522(c) of the Federal Crop Insurance Act (7 U.S.C. 1522(c)). One portion of this amendment added a subparagraph to the Federal Crop Insurance Act directing the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) to enter into a contract for a study of insurance policies that might provide coverage for specialty crop production or revenue losses resulting from food safety and contamination issues. Specialty crops are defined in law as “fruits and vegetables, tree nuts, dried fruits and horticulture and nursery crops, including floriculture.” Health advisories and/or recalls related to contamination concerns and issued by government, retail, or national consumer group will be considered.

The United States Department of Agriculture (USDA), Risk Management Agency (RMA) Office of Product Management issued a contract on behalf of the FCIC. In that contract, a “Food Safety and Contamination Issue” is defined as “an issue when a specialty crop food has been contaminated or tainted making it unfit for consumption which results in a recall and causes an inability of producers to market their specialty crop from the field and the specialty crop is lost in field due to physical deterioration by natural causes.”

Watts and Associates, Inc. (W&A) was awarded the contract to conduct this food safety research study. Part of the research involves gathering stakeholder input. To that end, W&A is conducting a listening session open to the public at the Heidrick Ag History Center, 1962 Hays Lane, Woodland, CA 95776 on October 30, 2014 at 9:00 am. W&A hopes to obtain input about food safety and the effects of recalls on the ability of specialty crop producers to market their crops, input on the level of concern these issues raise, and other relevant feedback. If you are unable to attend, you can provide your input to Randy Landgren at W&A by email at

Josephine County to vote on pesticide ban Tue, 21 Oct 2014 11:58:07 -0400 Mateusz Perkowski A legally unenforceable ban on commercial pesticide use proposed in Oregon’s Josephine County is nonetheless troublesome to farmers and other pesticide users who worry it will spur vandalism.

Under Measure 17-63, a county ballot initiative in the November election, licensed corporate and government applicators would be prohibited from using pesticides on land in Josephine County. The ban would not apply to residential properties.

If local governments and courts refuse to enforce the ban, the ordinance would allow people to take “direct action” and use “any activities or actions carried out to directly enforce the rights and prohibitions contained within this ordinance.”

While the Oregon Legislature pre-empted local governments from regulating pesticides roughly 20 years ago, the ordinance could make people feel justified in vandalizing spray rigs or other equipment, said Scott Dahlman, executive director of Oregonians for Food and Shelter, which supports pesticide use.

“This measure is absolutely extreme,” Dahlman said. “It goes beyond a simple regulation.”

The prospect of vandalism against commercial pesticide users is not far-fetched considering two incidents in neighboring Jackson County last year, in which 6,500 genetically engineered sugar beet plants were destroyed, he said.

Aside from potential problems arising from “direct action,” the ordinance could prove costly for Josephine County if anti-pesticide activists try to compel the county government to enforce the ban through litigation, Dahlman said.

The ordinance is also misguided, as it would prevent licensed applicators from using pesticides that would still be available to homeowners with less training and experience, he said.

Supporters of the pesticide ban claim it’s necessary due to inaction by federal and state authorities.

“There is no guardian at the gate,” said Audrey Moore, director of the Freedom from Pesticides Alliance, which supports the measure.

When asked about the state law that precludes counties from restricting pesticide use, Moore said her group’s attorneys think the ordinance passes muster under the Oregon Constitution.

“The purpose of it is to override the pre-emption,” she said. “That’s the chemical cartel having their claws in our legislative body.”

Moore said she believes there is a “cancer cluster” in her area caused by helicopter spraying of pesticides, but residents haven’t been able to convince the state government to investigate.

The possibility of “direct action” is seen as a “last resort if the system fails us,” she said. “There’s some teeth to this initiative.”

Potential vandalism is a “scare tactic” by the ordinance’s opponents, said Moore, adding that she envisions “direct action” as standing in front of a truck to stop chemical delivery, rather than destroying property.

However, opponents of the measure are uneasy about the vague definition of “direct action” — “any activities or actions” to enforce the ban — which they believe could include assault and trespass.

In an explanatory statement, Josephine County’s legal counsel, Steven Rich, said “the measure would prohibit any civil or criminal action against the enforcers.”

Realistically, though, such a provision “would not have any force of law,” said James Foster, a political science professor at Oregon State University.

A county cannot “cherry pick” circumstances under which state or federal criminal laws will go unenforced, he said. “That is fantasyland.”

As for the ordinance superseding the state’s pre-emption of pesticide regulation, it’s also a legal impossibility, Foster said. That could not happen unless Oregon voters changed the state constitution to allow for such control by local governments, Foster said.

“Cities and counties are legal creatures of the state government,” he said. “The state legislature has the ultimate authority. The state legislature has the final word.”

Americold opens third Idaho cold-storage facility Tue, 21 Oct 2014 12:23:23 -0400 CaRol Dumas Americold has opened a cold-storage facility for agricultural products in Heyburn, Idaho, bringing to three the number of facilities the Atlanta-based company operates in the Gem State.

The company, which offers temperature-controlled warehousing and logistics to the food industry, announced the opening of the Heyburn facility on Monday, stating it would complement its other Idaho facilities in Burley and Nampa.

The 160,000-square-foot building has capacity for more than 17,000 pallets — 10,000 steel-racked and 7,000 bulk-storage positions, Daniel Cooke, Americold marketing director, told Capital Press.

The company provides warehouses for refrigerated and frozen ag products to support the food logistics industry, assisting with storage, transportation and delivery, he said.

The company’s customers include some of the largest companies represented in the frozen and refrigerated aisles in the supermarket. Americold stores and transports all of those products, from ice cream to meats and vegetables, Cooke said.

The company located a second facility in the Magic Valley of south-central Idaho in response to customers who were looking for additional space and non-customers looking for new space, he said.

“Our customers have told us — and our research has shown — that the Magic Valley region is poised for exponential growth potential in the dairy and agriculture industries, and the demand for temperature-controlled, secure storage is rapidly increasing,” Americold President and COO Fred Boehler, said in a press release.

The facility’s close proximity to the Union Pacific rail line and Interstate 84 provides customers greater transportation alternatives to suit their distribution models, he said.

The company is leasing a facility recently vacated by the Simplot Co., Cooke said. The property lies within the industrial park owned by the city of Burley and managed by the Boyer Co. of Ogden, Utah, said Doug Manning, Burley’s economic development director.

Americold has been in touch with Boyer for some time and was just waiting for Simplot to pull out, he said.

Americold had been looking for space and opportunity in the area and came in right behind Simplot, said Kae Cameron, executive director of the Mini-Cassia Chamber of Commerce.

Simplot had used the facility for cold storage and warehousing. It was a natural fit and a good opportunity for workers who lost their jobs with Simplot, she said.

Americold will condition the facility to accommodate the local dairy and agricultural market. The secured building, with 10 truck and seven rail dock doors, has the ability to maintain temperatures ranging from 5 degrees to 50 degrees, the company’s press release stated.

The company will employ as many as 35 people at the facility, the press release stated.

According to its website, Americold owns and operates more than 175 temperature-controlled warehouses, with 1 billion cubic feet of storage, in the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, China, Argentina and Canada. Its warehouses connect food producers, processors, distributors and retailers to consumers. The company serves more than 3,000 customers and employs 12,000 associates worldwide.



77,000-acre cattle operation changes hands Tue, 21 Oct 2014 11:39:01 -0400 Mateusz Perkowski A large Central Oregon ranch property recently changed hands, with the property’s East Coast owner selling the 77,000-acre cattle operation for $19.9 million.

The sale included 21,500 acres of private property near Post, Ore., and grazing rights for roughly 50,000 acres owned by the U.S. Forest Service and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management.

The operation had been owned since the 1980s by Arthur Gutierrez, founder of a Massachusetts construction company, who decided to sell it for estate planning purposes, said Roger Dryden, a real estate broker who represented the buyer, Hamilton Ranch LLC.

Hamilton Ranch’s articles of organization show the company was formed earlier this year with Kelley Hamilton serving as its manager. Hamilton is the CEO of Bonaventure Senior Living, which operates 37 retirement homes in the Northwest.

“It’s a big transaction for Oregon,” said Dryden.

The sale comes shortly after another major real estate sale in Central Oregon. Ochoco Lumber sold a 32,000-acre tract for $18.5 million to Stafford Ranches of Fields, Ore., with part of the proceeds intended to pay for upgrades to its sawmill and biomass facility in John Day, Ore.

Dryden said these large land sales reflect the improving economy in the area, with investors becoming more comfortable about the state of the real estate market.

“You don’t necessarily want to put it in the bank to feel comfortable,” he said. “It’s a pretty safe place to put capital.”

The contiguous tract recently bought by Hamilton Ranch will continue to be used for cattle production, Dryden said. “It’s one of the premier cattle operations in the state.”

WSU grad named Washington state veterinarian Tue, 21 Oct 2014 11:33:20 -0400 OLYMPIA, Wash. — A Washington State University graduate who has spent much of his career in New Mexico has been named Washington state veterinarian, the state Department of Agriculture announced Monday.

Joe Baker has almost 40 years of experience in veterinary medicine, according to the WSDA.

Baker, who is married and has two grown sons, has held positions with the New Mexico Livestock Board since 2006.

He has headed New Mexico’s Food Safety, Meat and Poultry Inspection Division, worked as a field veterinarian and served as interim state veterinarian.

Paul Kohrs, the assistant state veterinarian, has been acting state veterinarian.

Baker will start with WSDA on Nov. 3.

“Dr. Baker comes to us with the experience and background to be a great state veterinarian,” WSDA Director Bud Hover said in a press release. “He has many years in private practice, but also has a deep understanding of regulatory medicine and policy, both of which will help him work successfully with the livestock industry.”

Baker completed his bachelor’s and doctorate degrees in veterinary medicine at WSU and also completed an equine reproduction residency at the University of California-Davis.

As state veterinarian, Baker will manage WSDA’s Animal Health Program.

Washington, Oregon potato farmers eye Southeast Asia Tue, 21 Oct 2014 11:28:10 -0400 Don Jenkins Oregon and Washington agriculture officials will spend 10 days in the Philippines and Vietnam promoting Northwest potatoes.

Fresh U.S. potatoes can’t compete on price with homegrown or Chinese spuds, so the bistate delegation will stress quality, the Washington Department of Agriculture’s international marketing program manager, Joe Bippert, said.

“If we can get across the idea that the Northwest potato is a premium potato, we can demand a premium price,” he said.

The trade trip, which will involve the potato commissions from each state, will be partly funded by a $65,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture specialty crop grant.

After visiting the Philippines and Vietnam with Oregon representatives, the Washington delegation will spend two days in Myanmar, a country just now opening up to U.S. trade.

Washington is the No. 2 potato-producing state after Idaho. Oregon ranks fifth.

The state’s agriculture directors, Bud Hover of Washington, and Katy Coba of Oregon, will lead the mission. The trip, which begins Oct. 28 in Manila, will combine networking, politicking and cooking.

Delegation members plan to talk with importers, lobby for lower tariffs and show that potato cuisine doesn’t end with french fries.

Chef Leif Eric Benson, a member of the Oregon Potato Commission, will demonstrate potato-centric recipes to chefs at high-end restaurants in Manila, Hanoi and Ho Chi Minh City.

Connell, Wash., farmer Ted Tschirky, one of two Washington potato growers on the trade mission, said he will stress that Northwest farmers can be relied on to produce a high-quality crop and that potatoes are “good for you, cooked in the right manner.”

“We’re highly dependent on creating new customers since our demand in the states is sliding a little bit, depending on the year,” he said.

The Philippines, Vietnam and Myanmar are potential growth markets for U.S. potatoes, though in different ways.

The Philippines began allowing the import of fresh U.S. potatoes in June 2013. The Philippines already was one of Washington’s top customers for processed potatoes, buying $42.9 million worth in 2013.

Processed potatoes for fast-food restaurants will remain Washington’s biggest market in the Philippines, but the trade mission will emphasize fresh potatoes, Bippert said.

Washington sold $335,000 worth of fresh potatoes there in 2013.

A USDA analysis this month reported that the number of U.S. potatoes coming into the Philippines is growing rapidly. Still, Filipinos are largely unaware about the availability, variety and uses of U.S. potatoes.

In Vietnam, the country’s first McDonald’s restaurant opened in February in Ho Chi Minh City, portending a greater demand for processed potatoes.

Washington exported $2.9 million worth of processed potatoes and $591,000 worth of fresh potatoes to Vietnam in 2013.

In Myanmar, the delegation will make contacts in what had been one of the most reclusive countries in the world.

Myanmar’s military rulers in 2011 opened the country of 53 million to U.S. trade. Washington sold $2.9 million of wheat in 2013 to Myanmar but little else.

“It’s really a brand new market,” Bippert said. “There is a big potential. They’re very dependent on trade. They import a lot of their food.”

Mathisons renew effort to gain more cherry ground Tue, 21 Oct 2014 11:19:09 -0400 Dan Wheat WENATCHEE, Wash. — The Mathison family, owners of one of the largest non-citrus tree fruit companies in the nation, is renewing its attempt to acquire public lands to plant more cherry trees high in the Stemilt Basin south of Wenatchee.

In February, the state Department of Natural Resources dropped the idea of selling or leasing two sections of land to the Mathisons for orchard development after area residents protested that the land had previously been earmarked for protection of water, wildlife and recreation.

At the 3,000-foot level, the land is in the higher reaches of what many say is the best cherry growing ground in the world. The area encompasses Stemilt Hill and Wenatchee Heights, where the Mathisons grow cherries on about 1,000 acres. The area is also used by elk.

In February, the Mathisons talked about creating 450 acres of cherry orchard on Sections 16 and 22, which are owned by DNR.

Now the family wants to trade 218 acres of steep terrain on Section 21 for 218 acres of flatter terrain on Section 16 to develop 134.5 acres of cherry orchard on Section 16.

Section 21 is better elk habitat than Section 16, West Mathison, president of Stemilt Growers Inc., said in pitching the idea during a Stemilt Partnership meeting at the Malaga Fire Hall on Oct. 20. The Stemilt Partnership, a coalition of people and groups interested in preserving Stemilt Basin, was formed in 2007 to prevent development of a major resort.

“The concept is the current land status of all these lands isn’t very ideal, so we’re trying to have it better for wildlife, recreation and irrigation,” Mathison said.

Orchard on part of Section 16 would fit with orchard the Mathisons are planning on portions of adjoining Section 9 that it just brought from Kevin Gates, Mathison said.

Corridors around the orchards would be preserved for elk, he said.

There was discussion of orchard practices including use of noise cannons for bird hazing and use of pesticides. Several people were critical of orchard practices and lack of adequate elk corridors on Section 10 that the Mathisons previously developed on a DNR lease.

Bud Riker, a cherry grower, said he’s opposed to more orchards on public lands.

“It seems game corridors get narrower all the time. I’ve farmed up here for years and we have more elk. The further you expand orchard and choke down corridors the more problems it creates,” said Dennis Berdan, another grower.

“Corridors (proposed at 200 to 700 feet wide) need to be two to three times wider,” he said.

“We’re open to discussion,” Mathison replied.

“I don’t know. When is enough, enough for you guys?” Jerry Gutzwiler, a grower, asked of Mathison.

“Section 10 was horribly done. The buffers are bad. It choked off elk like Dennis said,” Gutzwiler said.

He predicted it won’t be easy for the Mathisons to get environmental approvals to develop orchard on Section 9 and said he wants Section 16 and 22 left undisturbed.

“We purchased all of that for wildlife and you’ve been pushing more and more orchard. The Stemilt Partnership is trying to preserve this and what you’re trying to do is contrary to that,” Gutzwiler said.

“Can it just be left alone for elk?” Rich Cole, an area resident, asked. “Pretty soon the elk will be over the other side of Blewett Pass and not here at all.”

Mathison said it was a good start at dialogue and that he wants to work collaboratively within the partnership. He noted his proposal assumes the state Department of Fish and Wildlife finishes acquiring Section 16 and 22 from DNR.

James Brown, North Central regional director of WDFW, said talks on a land exchange for the sections are at an impasse and WDFW doesn’t have the money to buy them. The department is firmly on record to preserve the sections for wildlife so even if it secures them, agreeing to a swap with the Mathisons would only occur with the backing of the Stemilt Partnership and departmental appraisals of habitat and land values, Brown said.

Hal Salwasser, former OSU College of Forestry dean, dies at 69 Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:40:48 -0400 MITCH LIES Hal Salwasser, who led the College of Forestry at Oregon State University through a time when forest management underwent dramatic change, died at his home in Corvallis Oct. 15, reportedly from natural causes.

He was 69.

University and state government leaders expressed sorrow in his passing and commended Salwasser for his contributions to forestry management and instruction.

“Hal was a wonderful colleague, a respected forester and an engaged Corvallis community member,” said OSU President Ed Ray. “His work leading the College of Forestry grew the university’s essential contributions in teaching and research concerning the world’s forests, watershed, natural areas and the wood-products industry.”

“Hal was a leader in Oregon during one of the most dynamic periods of change in how forests in our state are managed,” said Gov. John Kitzhaber in a statement. “He brought an unshakable commitment to stewardship and science to his career.”

Salwasser, who stepped down as dean in 2012 after 12 years in the position, had remained an active member of the College of Forestry faculty until just recently, according to a university press release.

During his tenure as dean, he was recognized for guiding the college through a period when environmental concerns of forest management rose in importance.

He survived a vote of confidence from College of Forestry faculty in 2006 after a furor arose over attempts to delay the publication in Science of an article written by graduate student Dan Donato and others.

Donato’s paper cited research showing that logging in the aftermath of the 2002 Biscuit Fire slowed forest regeneration.

Some College of Forestry faculty members believed the article was short on qualifiers and context and asked the publication be delayed until they had time to respond.

Science, which already had peer-reviewed the article, refused, and Salwasser and others came under fire for what was perceived as attempts to stifle academic freedom.

Before coming to OSU, Salwasser supervised natural resources research and development of U.S. Forest Service activities in California and Hawaii as the chief executive officer of the Pacific Southwest Research Station of the U.S. Forest Service.

He previously was regional forester for the northern region of the U.S. Forest Service.

College of Forestry hopes to build ‘showpiece’ Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:43:34 -0400 MITCH LIES SUNRIVER, Ore. — If all goes as planned, come fall term 2017, Oregon State University’s College of Forestry will be housed in what Dean Thomas Maness describes as “a showpiece on the OSU campus.”

“We want the buildings to tell the story of forestry as you walk through them,” he said.

Maness unveiled preliminary architectural plans for the college’s new complex at the recent Oregon Forest Industries Council’s annual meeting. The plans include a remodel of Peavy Hall, headquarters of the college, and construction of a Center for Advanced Wood Building Design and Manufacturing, which will include laboratories to test and create new wood-product designs.

The college is partnering with the University of Oregon’s College of Architecture on the center.

The plans include construction of an open courtyard with “an idea laboratory” enclosed in glass looking out onto it, Maness said.

A second lab, called an advanced wood processing lab, will include a pilot plant for producing advanced wood-building materials and manufacturing capabilities for research and experimentation on manufacturing panels into building products.

The building will be constructed with cross-laminated timber, according to plans.

“Our motto for this construction project is ‘Honor the legacy and envision the future,’” Maness said. “It is going to be a real showcase for what is possible from Oregon woods.”

The college hired an architect firm about six months ago to look over the site, Maness said, and provide a preliminary design and a cost estimate, a figure Maness said he can’t reveal.

The college is in negotiations right now with an architectural firm to do the design work, he said.

Maness said the project is “not a done deal,” but the college administration is confident they will get the green light to start on it next year.

The project is the number-two ranked building project by the Oregon University System’s Higher Education Coordinating Commission, Maness said.

“We feel really good about where we are, but we still have a lot of work to do,” Maness said. “We have to raise our share of the funds, and we have to apply for state bonding, among other things.”

As part of the project, the college is hoping to “get a facelift on Richardson Hall,” another building used by the college. The ‘facelift’ would involve constructing a wood exterior on the current brick façade, Maness said.

“Our goal is that every student who walks by (the complex) is going to say, ‘Wow. What is going on in there? I want to study whatever is happening in there. That looks like a cool place,’” Maness said.

Wood more environmentally sound building material, OSU forester says Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:44:01 -0400 MITCH LIES SUNRIVER, Ore. — Oregon State University College of Forestry Dean Thomas Maness gets excited when he talks wood.

“I get excited about this stuff, so you’ll forgive me if I tend to go on a bit,” he said during a recent presentation at the Oregon Forest Industries Council annual meeting.

“But this is important,” he said. “This is really important. We are producing something that is vital to human survival.”

Earlier in the presentation, Maness said housing demands are increasing at a rapid rate, and, with the world’s population expected to reach 9 billion in another two or three decades, the demand isn’t expected to slow.

“On top of that,” he said, “in developing countries, people are moving in mass numbers from rural to urban areas, and a large number of large buildings are being built to accommodate that movement.”

Further, he said: “Architects and engineers have realized that if we continue to build skyscrapers at the rate we have been, it is going to have an enormous environmental impact due to the construction of concrete and steel building.

“Their answer, which they have come up with on their own, is to build with sustainable building materials,” he said.

Wood, Maness said, fits that description. And increasing the demand for wood are new wood products, such as cross-laminated timber.

“Think of plywood made with thick lumber instead of 5 millimeter plies, and making a panel that is 80 feet long, 10 feet wide and 14 inches thick,” he said in describing cross-laminated timber.

“That is an incredible building material,” he said. “It is strong, and what gives it its real advantage is it is light.

“In a seismic event, the lighter the building, the less the sway you get as a result of the ground swell.”

The panels can be constructed in factories, complete with windows and doors cut out, trucked to job sites and tipped up, he said.

“It is an incredible shift in how you build,” he said.

Also, Maness said, Oregon is ideally positioned to meet the increasing demand for wood.

“We have an 18 million-acre reserve protecting the environment here,” he said. “Nowhere else on earth do you have that.”

And, according to the models developed by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, Western Oregon is only place in the world that shows an improving climate for growing trees.

“We’re looking at a good future for growing trees,” he said.

Nation’s pro rodeo leaders Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:30:48 -0400 The Through Oct. 20


1. Trevor Brazile, Decatur, Texas $259,262

2. Tuf Cooper, Decatur, Texas $158,537

3. Clint Robinson, Spanish Fork, Utah $88,683

4. Clayton Hass, Terrell, Texas $86,832

5. Rhen Richard, Roosevelt, Utah $86,668

6. Josh Peek, Pueblo, Colo. $80,309

7. Curtis Cassidy, Donalda, Alberta $74,496

8. Steven Dent, Mullen, Neb. $61,394

9. Russell Cardoza, Terrebonne, Ore. $56,980

10. Ryle Smith, Oakdale, Calif. $56,317

11. Ryan Jarrett, Comanche, Okla. $55,187

12. Landon McClaugherty, Tilden, Texas $52,422

13. Trell Etbauer, Goodwell, Okla. $46,935

14. Payden Emmett, Ponca, Ark. $41,062

15. Paul David Tierney, Oral, S.D. $39,567

16. Kyle Whitaker, Chambers, Neb. $37,521

17. J.B. Lord, Sturgis, S.D. $31,310

18. Chant DeForest, Wheatland, Calif. $31,048

19. Caleb Smidt, Bellville, Texas $31,047

20. J.D. Yates, Pueblo, Colo. $28,444

Bareback Riding

1. Kaycee Feild, Spanish Fork, Utah $172,384

2. Steven Peebles, Redmond, Ore. $126,929

3. Austin Foss, Terrebonne, Ore. $122,717

4. Tim O’Connell, Zwingle, Iowa $102,890

5. Will Lowe, Canyon, Texas $99,013

6. Bobby Mote, Culver, Ore. $95,309

7. Richmond Champion, The Woodlands, Texas $89,935

8. Caleb Bennett, Tremonton, Utah $84,225

9. Winn Ratliff, Leesville, La. $73,039

10. J.R. Vezain, Cowley, Wyo. $70,208

11. Jake Vold, Ponoka, Alberta $67,786

12. Jessy Davis, Power, Mont. $67,686

13. Tilden Hooper, Carthage, Texas $65,779

14. Justin McDaniel, Porum, Okla. $65,178

15. Steven Dent, Mullen, Neb. $64,567

16. R.C. Landingham, Pendleton, Ore. $61,035

17. Luke Creasy, Lubbock, Texas $52,925

18. Ty Breuer, Mandan, N.D. $52,847

19. Orin Larsen, Goodwell, Okla. $51,917

20. Caine Riddle, Vernon, Texas $50,540

Steer Wrestling

1. Trevor Knowles, Mount Vernon, Ore. $91,804

2. K.C. Jones, Decatur, Texas $82,055

3. Casey Martin, Sulphur, La. $80,278

4. Nick Guy, Sparta, Wis. $77,754

5. Clayton Hass, Terrell, Texas $76,576

6. Bray Armes, Ponder, Texas $69,216

7. Dru Melvin, Hebron, Neb. $67,832

8. Luke Branquinho, Los Alamos, Calif. $65,992

9. Dakota Eldridge, Elko, Nev. $63,015

10. Kyle Irwin, Robertsdale, Ala. $59,736

11. Curtis Cassidy, Donalda, Alberta $57,449

12. Cole Edge, Durant, Okla. $57,406

13. Wyatt Smith, Rexburg, Idaho $57,188

14. Seth Brockman, Wheatland, Wyo. $52,933

15. Ty Erickson, Helena, Mont. $52,470

16. Tom Lewis, Lehi, Utah $52,406

17. Riley Duvall, Checotah, Okla. $52,025

18. Blake Knowles, Heppner, Ore. $49,022

19. Billy Bugenig, Ferndale, Calif. $46,824

20. Josh Peek, Pueblo, Colo. $46,081

Team Roping (header)

1. Clay Tryan, Billings, Mont. $110,181

2. Erich Rogers, Round Rock, Ariz. $101,421

3. Trevor Brazile, Decatur, Texas $101,399

4. Dustin Bird, Cut Bank, Mont. $90,643

5. Riley Minor, Ellensburg, Wash. $82,889

6. Kaleb Driggers, Albany, Ga. $81,470

7. Brandon Beers, Powell Butte, Ore. $79,491

8. Nick Sartain, Dover, Okla. $76,963

9. Coleman Proctor, Pryor, Okla. $75,710

10. Luke Brown, Stephenville, Texas $73,062

11. Jake Barnes, Scottsdale, Ariz. $72,341

12. Charly Crawford, Prineville, Ore. $71,559

13. Turtle Powell, Stephenville, Texas $69,310

14. Aaron Tsinigine, Tuba City, Ariz. $68,074

15. Tom Richards, Humboldt, Ariz. $66,744

16. Chad Masters, Cedar Hill, Tenn. $64,942

17. Tyler Wade, Terrell, Texas $58,533

18. Chace Thompson, Munday, Texas $50,975

19. Brady Tryan, Huntley, Mont. $50,775

20. Ty Blasingame, Sugar City, Colo. $48,858

Team Roping (heeler)

1. Jade Corkill, Fallon, Nev. $110,181

2. Cory Petska, Marana, Ariz. $101,769

3. Travis Graves, Jay, Okla. $101,399

4. Paul Eaves, Lonedell, Mo. $93,735

5. Brady Minor, Ellensburg, Wash. $82,889

6. Patrick Smith, Lipan, Texas $81,470

7. Jim Ross Cooper, Monument, N.M. $79,491

8. Rich Skelton, Llano, Texas $76,963

9. Jake Long, Coffeyville, Kan. $76,710

10. Shay Carroll, La Junta, Colo. $72,618

11. Kollin VonAhn, Blanchard, Okla. $70,062

12. Dakota Kirchenschlager, Morgan Mill, Texas $65,950

13. Junior Nogueira, Scottsdale, Ariz. $62,333

14. Clay O’Brien Cooper, Gardnerville, Nev. $60,255

15. Kinney Harrell, Marshall, Texas $55,741

16. Cole Davison, Stephenville, Texas $54,220

17. Ryan Motes, Weatherford, Texas $53,828

18. Cesar de la Cruz, Tucson, Ariz. $52,394

19. Jett Hillman, Purcell, Okla. $51,344

20. Tommy Zuniga, Centerville, Texas $50,796

Saddle Bronc Riding

1. Taos Muncy, Corona, N.M. $126,879

2. Cody Wright, Milford, Utah $111,085

3. Cort Scheer, Elsmere, Neb. $102,413

4. Heith DeMoss, Heflin, La. $92,574

5. Jacobs Crawley, Stephenville, Texas $88,729

6. Wade Sundell, Boxholm, Iowa $83,875

7. Tyler Corrington, Hastings, Minn. $77,694

8. Jesse Wright, Milford, Utah $77,495

9. Bradley Harter, Loranger, La. $74,836

10. Chad Ferley, Oelrichs, S.D. $73,705

11. Cole Elshere, Faith, S.D. $71,109

12. Cody DeMoss, Heflin, La. $66,683

13. Spencer Wright, Milford, Utah $60,265

14. Jake Wright, Milford, Utah $59,795

15. Dustin Flundra, Pincher Creek, Alberta $59,357

16. Troy Crowser, Whitewood, S.D. $59,204

17. Sterling Crawley, Stephenville, Texas $55,039

18. Sam Spreadborough, Snyder, Texas $51,725

19. Chet Johnson, Sheridan, Wyo. $49,900

20. Isaac Diaz, Desdemona, Texas $47,313

Tie-down Roping

1. Tuf Cooper, Decatur, Texas $153,822

2. Matt Shiozawa, Chubbuck, Idaho $116,983

3. Trevor Brazile, Decatur, Texas $93,849

4. Clint Robinson, Spanish Fork, Utah $85,893

5. Marty Yates, Stephenville, Texas $83,188

6. Hunter Herrin, Apache, Okla. $81,533

7. Shane Hanchey, Sulphur, La. $79,687

8. Cade Swor, Winnie, Texas $76,319

9. Timber Moore, Aubrey, Texas $74,285

10. Clint Cooper, Decatur, Texas $69,596

11. Adam Gray, Seymour, Texas $69,401

12. Ryan Watkins, Bluff Dale, Texas $68,197

13. Reese Riemer, Stinnett, Texas $66,317

14. Cody Ohl, Hico, Texas $65,282

15. Tyson Durfey, Colbert, Wash. $64,240

16. Cory Solomon, Prairie View, Texas $57,828

17. Jake Pratt, Ellensburg, Wash. $57,311

18. Ryan Jarrett, Comanche, Okla. $56,355

19. Randall Carlisle, Baton Rouge, La. $56,296

20. Jesse Clark, Portales, N.M. $55,889

Steer Roping

1. Trevor Brazile, Decatur, Texas $68,835

2. Chet Herren, Pawhuska, Okla. $67,910

3. Jess Tierney, Hermosa, S.D. $53,561

4. Cody Lee, Gatesville, Texas $45,415

5. Vin Fisher Jr., Andrews, Texas $43,499

6. Chance Kelton, Mayer, Ariz. $37,464

7. Jason Evans, Huntsville, Texas $35,224

8. Mike Chase, McAlester, Okla. $33,281

9. Tony Reina, Wharton, Texas $33,165

10. J.P. Wickett, Sallisaw, Okla. $33,040

11. Brady Garten, Claremore, Okla. $32,543

12. Rocky Patterson, Pratt, Kan. $32,329

13. Scott Snedecor, Fredericksburg, Texas $31,225

14. Brodie Poppino, Big Cabin, Okla. $30,193

15. Troy Tillard, Douglas, Wyo. $28,268

16. Jarrett Blessing, Paradise, Texas $27,707

17. J.B. Whatley, Gardendale, Texas $26,094

18. Bryce Davis, Ovalo, Texas $26,009

19. Roger Branch, Perkins, Okla. $25,855

20. J. Tom Fisher, Andrews, Texas $24,148

Bull Riding

1. Sage Kimzey, Strong City, Okla. $143,165

2. Trey Benton III, Rock Island, Texas $125,547

3. Cody Teel, Kountze, Texas $102,589

4. Tim Bingham, Honeyville, Utah $85,634

5. Brennon Eldred, Sulphur, Okla. $77,830

6. J.W. Harris, Mullin, Texas $77,307

7. Reid Barker, Comfort, Texas $76,227

8. Josh Koschel, Nunn, Colo. $72,837

9. Jordan Spears, Redding, Calif. $72,139

10. Tyler Smith, Fruita, Colo. $70,040

11. Joe Frost, Randlett, Utah $69,558

12. Ty Wallace, Collbran, Colo. $67,577

13. Beau Hill, West Glacier, Mont. $67,158

14. Aaron Pass, Dallas, Texas $66,546

15. Elliot Jacoby, Fredericksburg, Texas $65,039

16. Brett Stall, Detroit Lakes, Minn. $63,553

17. Cody Campbell, Summerville, Ore. $58,936

18. Dustin Bowen, Fredericksburg, Pa. $58,646

19. Jeff Askey, Martin, Tenn. $55,122

20. Chandler Bownds, Lubbock, Texas $52,937

Barrel Racing

1. Kaley Bass, Kissimmee, Fla. $155,280

2. Fallon Taylor, Whitesboro, Texas $131,471

3. Lisa Lockhart, Oelrichs, S.D. $121,617

4. Nancy Hunter, Neola, Utah $104,289

5. Britany Diaz, Solen, N.D. $102,947

6. Michele McLeod, Whitesboro, Texas $100,645

7. Mary Walker, Ennis, Texas $99,712

8. Christine Laughlin, Pueblo, Colo. $93,135

9. Sherry Cervi, Marana, Ariz. $93,048

10. Kassidy Dennison, Roosevelt, Utah $92,051

11. Christy Loflin, Franktown, Colo. $91,736

12. Carlee Pierce, Stephenville, Texas $90,431

13. Trula Churchill, Valentine, Neb. $74,385

14. Samantha Lyne, Cotulla, Texas $70,577

15. Jana Bean, Ft. Hancock, Texas $70,416

16. Brenda Mays, Terrebonne, Ore. $70,017

17. Shelley Morgan, Eustace, Texas $69,447

18. Ann Scott, Canyon Country, Calif. $68,119

19. Sarah Rose McDonald, Brunswick, Ga. $64,063

20. Kimmie Wall, Roosevelt, Utah $60,579

N.Y. grants $17.6 million to protect 21 farms Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:28:33 -0400 ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The state agriculture department has granted $17.6 million to protect more than 6,400 acres of farmland across New York state, ensuring the land will remain agricultural and won’t be developed.

Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Monday that the funds will help preserve 21 farms in 12 counties, bringing the total acreage under the farmland protection program to approximately 59,000 acres.

The program protects viable farmland through perpetual conservation easements or shorter-term lease of development rights.

Since 1996, New York has awarded nearly $195 million for farmland protection projects in 29 counties.

Farms protected under the program remain taxable.

Wild horse adoption planned in Boise Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:28:20 -0400 BOISE, Idaho (AP) — Twenty-three wild horses gathered in southwest Idaho will available for adoption in Boise on Friday and Saturday.

Officials with the U.S. Bureau of Land Management say the horses from the Hard Trigger Wild Horse Herd Management Area will be available at the Boise Wild Horse Corrals off Pleasant Valley Road in south Boise.

Adoption hours from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday.

The 2014 Extreme Mustang Makeover Champion Matt Zimmerman will conduct training demonstrations both days.

Those wishing to adopt a wild horse must be at least 18 years old, never have been convicted of animal abuse or cruelty, and have proper facilities and transportation.

Cattle killed in E. Idaho tractor-trailer crash Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:26:35 -0400 VICTOR, Idaho (AP) — A tractor-trailer crash has killed 23 cattle in southeastern Idaho near Victor.

Idaho State Police tell KIFI-TV the crash occurred about 11:15 a.m. Monday when the truck failed to make it around a corner and tipped over.

Police say 54-year-old Charles Camper of Florence, Colorado, was taken to Teton Valley Hospital in Driggs where he was treated and released.

The trailer held 85 cattle.

Rain damage, water shortage hamper pumpkin crop Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:23:31 -0400 Tim Hearden ANDERSON, Calif. — Grower Greg Hawes winced as he rolled back one of the pumpkins in his field to find water damage.

“They get soft in that one spot and start to decay” where the pumpkin is in contact with the ground, he said. “A little mildew will set in.”

Hawes, the owner of Hawes Ranch and Farm Supply and Historic Hawes Farms here, said he lost between 5 and 10 percent of his pumpkins to rot after a storm dumped nearly 3 inches of rain in late September.

More rain was expected off and on this week as his popular corn maze and other attractions were receiving thousands of guests in the run-up to Halloween.

“We like the rain, though, so I’m not complaining,” Hawes said.

The few instances of rain damage in northern areas gave a slight blemish to what is otherwise a decent pumpkin crop in Northern California this fall, growers say.

Good weather and the relative absence of pest pressure made for an above-average yield, said Wayne Bishop, owner of Bishop’s Pumpkin Farm in Wheatland, Calif.

“It’s not the best crop we’ve ever had, but it’s good,” Bishop said.

In a typical year, nearly 6,000 acres of pumpkins are grown in California. They’re spread out over most counties, although about 70 percent of them are grown in San Joaquin County.

Most are planted in May or June for the Halloween season, University of California Cooperative Extension advisors explain. Most of the pumpkins grown in California are sold in the state, according to the California Farm Bureau Federation.

Over the last decade, many pumpkin farms in California have developed into booming tourist attractions. Now in its 10th year of providing entertainment, Hawes Farms’ corn maze, train and hay rides and other attractions are visited by thousands of schoolchildren on field trips each autumn, Hawes said.

Hot weather earlier this month kept some patrons away, growers said.

“I think the whole season is a little bit later that way,” Bishop said. “We had a lot of hot weather in the first three weeks we were open, and that tends to keep people away a little bit. They don’t realize it’s fall.

“I think it’s pushed our season a little bit later, but they seem to be making it out,” he said.

A lack of water hurt production in some areas, particularly in the San Joaquin Valley, where some growers said pumpkin sizes were about 70 percent of normal, the state Farm Bureau reported.

The hit to pumpkin fields comes as some farms may be relying more on their pumpkin patches and seasonal agritourism businesses to make up for lost revenue from other crops because of the drought, the Farm Bureau noted.

The Manteca, Calif.-based George Perry and Sons, which provides pumpkins to supermarkets and other retailers, used deficit irrigation on some crops to get through the season, co-owner Paul Gomes said.

“We did water conservation and we did some other things to make sure we got by, but we made it through,” he said.

Hawes said he purchased some pumpkins wholesale to augment the ones in his fields, but it was more in anticipation of big crowds than of severe crop damage.

“I was just nervous,” he said. “We have a lot more people coming out ... It was just to hedge my bet, and I’m glad I did.”

Portland daily grain report Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:15:40 -0400 Portland, Ore., Tuesaday, Oct. 21

USDA Market News

Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon during October by unit trains and barges, in dollars per bushel, except oats, corn and barley, in dollars per cwt. Bids for soft white wheat are for delivery periods as specified. Hard red winter wheat and dark northern spring wheat bids are for full October delivery. Bids for corn are for 30 day delivery.

In early trading December wheat futures trended 3.75 to 7.50 cents per bushel higher than Monday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat for October delivery in unit trains or barges were not fully established in early trading but bids were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. The higher Chicago December wheat futures supported cash bids.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading, but were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids in lining up with the higher Kansas City December wheat futures.

Bids for 14 percent protein non-guaranteed US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading but were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids. The higher Minneapolis December wheat futures supported cash bids.

Bids for US 2 Yellow Corn delivered to Portland and the Yakima Valley were not available.

All wheat bids in dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Oct mostly 6.8850, ranging 6.7600-7.0100

Nov 6.7500-7.0600

Dec 6.7500-7.1100

Jan 6.7950-7.1950

Feb 6.7950-7.1950

US 1 White Club Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Oct mostly 9.1350, ranging 9.0100-9.2600

Not fully established and limited.

US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat - (Exporter bids-falling numbers of 300 or


Ordinary protein 7.3775-7.6775

10 pct protein 7.3775-7.6775

11 pct protein 7.4575-7.7575

11.5 pct protein

Oct 7.4975-7.7975

12 pct protein 7.4975-7.7975

13 pct protein 7.4975-7.7975

Not fully established and limited.

US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat (with a minimum of 300 falling numbers, a maximum

of 0.5 part per million vomitoxin, and a maximum of one percent total damage)

13 pct protein 7.6300-7.7800

14 pct protein

Oct 9.0300-9.2300

15 pct protein 9.9800-10.0300

16 pct protein 10.7800-11.0300

Not fully established and limited.

US 2 Yellow Corn in dollars per CWT

Domestic-single rail cars

Delivered full coast-BN NA

Delivered to Portland NA

Rail and Truck del to Willamette Vly NA

Rail del to Yakima Valley NA

Truck del to Yakima Valley NA

US 2 Heavy White Oats in dollars per CWT 13.2500

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Sep 2014

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges 6.7500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 7.0200

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 7.1500

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 8.3400

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

America says no to cappuccino potato chips Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:07:00 -0400 CANDICE CHOIAP Food Industry Writer NEW YORK (AP) — America has rejected the idea of cappuccino-flavored Lay’s potato chips.

Frito-Lay says Wasabi Ginger won its contest that gives people a chance to create a new flavor, beating out the coffee-flavored chips and the two other finalists — Mango Salsa and Cheddar Bacon Mac & Cheese. Parent company PepsiCo Inc. says about 1 million total votes were cast online for the Do Us A Flavor promotion, a sales driver it has launched in more than a dozen countries.

In the U.S., bags of the four finalist flavors hit shelves in late July and people were able to vote on Facebook and Twitter for their favorites through this past weekend. It was the second year for the U.S. contest, which is designed to send customers to stores in search of the flavors. Last year’s winner, Cheesy Garlic Bread, is still on shelves.

The winner, Meneko Spigner McBeth, was informed at a dinner for finalists Monday night in New York City. McBeth, a registered nurse from Deptford, New Jersey, will get $1 million or a set percentage of a year in sales, whichever figure is larger.

Ram Krishnan, Frito-Lay’s chief marketing officer, said this year’s winner is evidence Americans want more ethnic flavors, even though the top four Lay’s flavors remain Original, Barbecue, Cheddar & Sour Cream and Sour Cream & Onion. He said he couldn’t have imagined Lay’s selling a Wasabi Ginger flavor when he joined the company eight years ago.

“We’re kind of getting into a new flavor territory,” Krishnan said. “When I went to school, Mexican food was exotic.”

As for the cappuccino flavor — which was described as “NASTY” and “gross” in some comments on Lay’s Facebook page — Krishnan defended its performance, although he wouldn’t say how many votes it got.

“The fact that it made it out of our selection process to make it to the final four is no small feat,” he said.

The contest began in the United Kingdom, where Frito-Lay sells chips under the Walkers brand. Since then, it was launched in 14 countries before coming to the U.S. last year. Winning flavors in other countries include Pizza in Saudi Arabia, Shrimp in Egypt, Sunday Roast in New Zealand, Pickled Cucumber in Serbia and Aline’s Caesar Salad in Australia.

Given its success, Krishnan said the company is looking to launch the contest in other countries as well.

Krishnan wouldn’t specify how much of a sales lift the contest provides. But in the latest quarter that ended Sept. 6, PepsiCo, based in Purchase, New York, said revenue for its Frito-Lay North America division rose 3 percent, reflecting a 2 percent gain in volume and 1 percent gain from higher prices.

The meaning of ‘organic’ hazy for nonfood items Tue, 21 Oct 2014 10:01:47 -0400 MARY CLARE JALONICK Associated Press

WASHINGTON (AP) — There’s a strict set of standards for organic foods. But the rules are looser for household cleaners, textiles, cosmetics and the organic dry cleaners down the street.

Wander through the grocery store and check out the shelves where some detergents, hand lotions and clothing proclaim organic bona fides.

Absent an Agriculture Department seal or certification, there are few ways to tell if those organic claims are bogus.

A shopper’s only recourse is to do his or her own research.

“The consumer should not need a law degree to read a label,” says Laura Batcha, president of the Organic Trade Association, the industry’s main trade group. Concerned about the image of organics, the association is pressuring the government to better investigate organic claims on nonfood items.



According to the Organic Trade Association, sales of those nonfood organic products were about $2.8 billion last year, a small share of the overall organic market but growing rapidly. Among the most popular items: household cleaners, cosmetics, gardening products, clothing, sheets and mattresses.

USDA doesn’t regulate any of those items, though, unless they’re made entirely from food or agriculture products overseen by its National Organic Program. That’s when they can carry the familiar “USDA organic” seal or other official USDA certification.

The rules are murkier when the items have ingredients that aren’t regulated by USDA, like chemicals in soaps or makeup. The department doesn’t police the use of the word organic for nonfood items, as it does with food.

Some examples:

—Personal care products. Companies can brand any personal care product as organic with little USDA oversight as long as they don’t use the USDA organic seal or certification. Some retailers like Whole Foods Market have stepped in with their own standards requiring organic body care items sold at their stores to be certified. There’s also a private certification called NSF/ANSI 305, but most consumers don’t know to look for that label.

—Clothing, sheets and mattresses made from organic cotton or other organic fibers. Some items are certified by the Global Organic Textile Standard, a third-party verification organization that reviews how the products are manufactured. Like body care, most consumers don’t know about it.

—Gardening products. Some gardening products may be approved by USDA for use in organic agriculture, but not be certified organic themselves.

There are clear standards for items within the scope of USDA’s regulation, says Miles McEvoy, the head of department’s National Organic Program. “The areas that are outside of our scope could cause some confusion.”



The Federal Trade Commission normally investigates deceptive claims. But the agency demurred in its “Green Guides” published in 2012, saying enforcement of organic claims on nonfood products could duplicate USDA duties.

A claim is only deceptive if it misleads consumers, the agency says. So, it will study consumer perceptions of the word organic. But officials weren’t able to say when such a study might begin.

The Organic Trade Association’s Batcha says the lack of enforcement could erode confidence in the organic industry as a whole. The industry has similarly been fighting overuse of the word “natural,” which has no legal meaning at all.

Ken Cook, head of the Environmental Working Group, an advocacy group that publishes online consumer databases on cosmetics and cleaning, is blunt: “Companies are chasing the consumers and the government is in the rear-view mirror.”



Some dry cleaners promote “organic” on their windows and in their stores, but there is no legal definition for that practice.

Mary Scalco, CEO of the industry group Drycleaning and Laundry Institute, said some of those businesses may actually be using petroleum-based solutions, which are not generally perceived as organic by the general public.

“The difficult part is the scientific meaning of organic and the consumer perception of the word,” she says.

Scalco says she is telling member companies to make sure their customers know what organic means.

“Because there is no real regulation on this right now, you want to make sure you don’t mislead the public,” she says.



So what’s a consumer to do, especially when organic products are often more expensive and the market is continuing to grow?

Right now, retailers are the first line of defense.

Four years ago, Whole Foods Market announced strict standards for labeling in the store’s well-stocked cosmetics, home cleaning and clothing aisles. The retailer also requires all products to list ingredients.

“In areas where there isn’t a government regulation, we have stepped up to create our own,” says Joe Dickson, global quality standards coordinator for the Austin, Texas-based chain.

David Bronner, the president of Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps, has fought for years to get the USDA to expand its powers on organics to include personal care products. He says Whole Foods’ standards have helped clean up the market, but there are still less scrupulous companies that stretch the meaning of the word organic to include petroleum-based oils and nonorganic palm and coconut oils that make up the base of many personal care products. Some grocery stores, spas and online retailers have no standards at all.

Bronner advises shoppers to read labels carefully and scan lists of ingredients. If you find several unpronounceable ingredients that sound like chemicals, “it’s probably not organic,” he says.

N. Dakota durum harvest, winter wheat planting near end Tue, 21 Oct 2014 09:58:15 -0400 FARGO, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota farmers are wrapping up the harvest of durum wheat and the planting of winter wheat.

The Agriculture Department says in its weekly crop report that both activities are 97 percent complete, after a week of dry and unseasonably warm weather.

The harvests of many late-season crops including soybeans and potatoes also are nearing completion, though the corn and sunflower harvests still lag well behind the average pace.

Pasture and range conditions in the state are rated 73 percent good to excellent. Stockwater supplies are rated 97 percent adequate to surplus.