Sep 17, 2014
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February 2014 Archive for U.S. Farm Report Mailbag

RSS By: U.S. Farm Report, US Farm Report

Comments, questions, opinions...this is your chance to speak out regarding anything and everything reported on U.S. Farm Report. Viewer feedback updated regularly.

Viewers Respond: Climate Change and Honeybees

Feb 25, 2014

 ***The following viewer comments were received in response to the February 22-23, 2014 edition of U.S. Farm Report…

Viewer Comment #1:   John, would you please drop all this climate hoax? ENOUGH! This HOAX has been one of the most successful scams of the last 25 years deemed to make Al Gore a multimillionaire, that part has succeeded.  I recently attended one of Drew Lerners weather presentations.  His data showed the last warm year was 1998. Every year since, the global average temperature has DROPPED!  Another recent news report indicated that NOAA and NASA were manipulating numbers - this is believable based on factual data.  Another weather scientist (PhD) from Climate Canada said his models showed global cooling until 2040! Along with that, he said Fargo ND's climate could be what Winnipeg MB's is now.

Don't fall into the trap.  Jerry Mork


Viewer Comment #2:  The irrigation and drinking water provided by the Colorado River is a model of maximizing its fresh water usage before mixing with salt water in the Gulf of California.  If fact, very little if any Colorado River water reaches salt water as Mexico uses the remainder of this precious natural resource and commodity.  Compare this model with the fresh water in the Great Lakes and the St. Lawrence River.  To make matters worse, the State and Provincial governments of the US and Canada have usage rules which allows only those in the Great Lakes watershed to use the water.  This protection is designed to keep water thirsty areas from eyeing the Great Lakes for its water source and also ensure the Great Lakes keep normal or natural water levels.  But there is a fresh water wasting question.  There obviously is a location in the St. Lawrence River before it reaches the tidal basin where the fresh water is never brackish.  This water is probably the most wasted fresh water commodity source in the world.  While I have no idea of the financial cost of extracting and delivering this source of fresh water to drought areas, the fact that it is fresh water is priceless.  Is there a problem with extracting water before it reaches the tidal basin and becomes brackish?  No one ever complains about desalinating ocean water.  However, the cost of such operation is prohibitive except for drinking water.  Yet collecting water just before it becomes salty would save on all of the desalinating costs.  Just something to think about…Terry R. Krukemyer



Viewer Comment #3:  Your report on California vegetable production was right on.  With wild weather all over the world the move to locally produced food, including fruit and vegetables, makes sense. It is good for the environment, consumers and gives new opportunities to young producers.  Denny Verhoff


Viewer Comment #4:  Could you please send me a copy of this week’s comments on the issue of honey bees?  I am working on an innovative planter modification to solve this problem.  Keep up the good work. I am surprised your views and comments haven't ended your career as a TV journalist.  Thanks, Paul Henkel

Editor’s Note:  Below is a transcript of John’s comments from the Mailbag segment…

Time now for our weekly look inside the Farm Report Mailbag.  Richard Paton in Ontario sends us a heads-up about regulatory action on a widely used pesticide.  "Concerns about bee health have become a big problem in Ontario and there is talk of banning neonictinoids which would be a financial burden to farmers."  Richard, the suspected link between neonictinoids used to treat seed corn and honeybee die-offs has already triggered a temporary ban in the E.U.  The pesticide regulatory agency in Canada will rule soon on a petition to ban the use there.  But the problem seems solvable to me.  As long as new neonics stay on the seed underground they pose little threat.  It is the inadvertent combination of modern planters which use high velocity air for seed handling and the addition of talc on the seed to prevent seed flow problems.  When the talc contacts the seed and then is hit with a blast, talc particles are so fine they can spread farther than farmers can imagine.  This problem is largely blowout when lifting and turning at field edges.  When dust lands on flowers, it can kill bees with miniscule doses.  This is the working theory, anyway.  A replacement lubricant, better planter design and operator training can fix this it seems to me, along with farmer awareness of what talc escapes really mean. Farmers don’t want to kill insects they are not aiming for, and a little innovation up and down our production chain can resolve this.


Viewers Speak: John's World & the Solar Alternative

Feb 06, 2014

 ***Editor’s Note:  The following viewer comments were received in response to the February 1-2, 2014 edition of U.S. Farm Report:


#1:  The purpose of this e-mail is to compliment you on the excellent program you put on each week and that we watch regularly…a few comments ala John Phipps are in order.  John reminds me of a Political Science prof I had many, many years ago.  He used to taunt students and attack conventional thinking--all to get them to think and challenge him.  I do agree with the idea you espoused about GMO labeling by the way.  I have missed Gary Wilhelmi and was saddened to hear of his passing -- his often irreverent comments were entertaining and right on the money.  Mike Hoffman's weather is one of the best on TV!  Tyne Morgan does a super job.  We ask the producers to give her more time or less to say so she doesn't have to speak so rapidly!  The re-format that put the market stuff together in the first half hour was a good move.  The whole process is much more effective this way.  Now who am I that I watch the program so assiduously along with Ag Day?  We don't raise or sell corn, beans, or wheat and you couldn't turn any of the mega equipment around in our fields. I retired from another profession in 2000 and shortly thereafter, flunked retirement.  We purchased my family farm in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan and operate it full time raising registered Dexter cattle and Old Spot pigs.  Crops are hay, oats, barley and a little winter wheat.  The farm has doubled in size since we started and is now about 300 acres.  As I tell people, I saved a little money over the years and I'm going to farm ‘til it's gone! Our Best Wishes to you all. Jim Countryman and Agnes Sparpanic - Tolfree Farms - Ontonagon, MI


#2:  Hi Guys - in your report about propane and natural gas prices, I am curious why farmers don't convert to solar? With the long term benefits I would think more would be doing it. Lawrence Schuchart


#3:  Dear John, it is amazing how many Saturday mornings I wake up just before 5 a.m. without an alarm to watch the show.  Grew up on a Wisconsin dairy farm and I watch just to talk agriculture to my 85-yr-old retired father!  What are you hearing out there in the ag world about the new farm bill?  You and your team keep up the good work and tell Baxter Black, I love him too!!!   Sincerely, Lucinda on 22 acres near Bevent, WI


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