AgDay Daily Recap - April 13, 2012

April 13, 2012 05:29 AM

APRIL 13, 2012

Good morning I’m Tyne Morgan, in for Clinton Griffiths. The FDA wants to limit the use of antibiotics in farm animals, including cattle, chicken and pigs. The agency released three documents this week outlining uses of antibiotics. In the guidance, the agency said antibiotics can only be used when medically necessary, including therapeutic purposes in animal agriculture, such as disease treatment, control and prevention. FDA also said antibiotics can only be administered under a veterinarian's supervision. The agency said its trying to avoid overuse that can lead to resistant bacteria, which could ultimately be passed to humans through the food. While the National Cattleman's Beef Association is glad the FDA isn't trying to completely ban the use of antibiotics, it is concerned the papers are not based on peer-reviewed science, as well as where this could lead.

Crop watch begins in Champaign County, Illinois. This photo from Todd Gleason at the University of Illinois extension shows the result of Wednesday night's hard freeze. Farm Journal's agronomist Ken Ferrie tells us he thinks thousands of acres were damaged in that area. USDA says hard freezes dipped into southern Iowa, and central portions of Illinois and Indiana. Now here's Meteorologist Mike Hoffman with more in Crop Watch, Mike.

Good morning Tyne. Our good friend, Dave Deeken from Oklahoma State's Sun-Up program sent us this photo from Woodward County, Oklahoma. It clearly shows how large hail can shred the winter wheat crop. The storm hit that part of Oklahoma on Monday. Before the storm damage, USDA said three-quarters of Oklahoma's wheat was called good to excellent. Meanwhile in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, a farmer told us it's been very dry since January.
March only had nine-tenths of rain. He says little corn has been planted despite the ideal soil conditions. He adds that alfalfa and oat seedlings are suffering. The drought monitor puts all of eastern Pennsylvania in D-zero or abnormally dry category.

Thanks Mike. Now to the southeast where cotton planting is just getting underway. USDA says 9% is now planted. That compares to 7% last week. 6% is the average. As far as rice, 37% is now seeded. That's a twenty point gain from last week. It's also double the five year average. And some of the rice crop is starting to emerge. USDA data shows it sits at 9%. That's close to average. But there are big delays in the Texas rice crop pushing through. It's 30 points behind last year’s pace.

Meanwhile about half of the Louisiana rice crop is planted. But it appears farmers are planting less of it this year. Poor prices have farmers shifting into other crops. Tobie Blanchard has details in this report provided by the LSU Agcenter.

Time is running out to help your local school apply for a grant of up to 25 thousand dollars.
Farmers have until April 15th to nominate a qualifying public school for America's Farmers Grow Rural Education, which is being sponsored by the Monsanto Fund. In order for a farmer to be eligible, he or she must farm at least 250 acres of corn, cotton and/or soybeans or 40 acres of open field vegetables, in one of the 1245 qualifying counties. Once nominated, the school has until April 30th to submit a grant for math and/or science. The school chooses to either apply for 10,000 or 25,000 dollar grant. Winners will be selected by a group of 26 farmers and will be announced at the end of August. To nominate your school, go to

The warm weather has made many turkey hunters want to jump the gun. But the season is finally here, making the 40,000 Iowa turkey hunters ready to bag their springtime gobbler. In this report provided by the Iowa Department of Natural Resources, Joe Wilkinson tells us how the warm temps are also impacting the big hunt. Joe says the spring turkey season started last week for a special season just for kids. The regular season opens Monday. How often do you eat pizza? Up next in Food and Your Family we'll tell you about the un-wavering demand for a slice.

In Food and Your Family it appears the popularity of pizza is not waning. According to new research from Technomic, more than 40% consumers polled say they're now eating pizza once a week. That compares to 26% just two years ago. Technomic is a food marketing research firm. It says pizza consumption has increased over the past two years as the bigger players revamp their menus to include more innovative specialty pizzas and gourmet ingredients. The market firm says a growing number of consumers also want pizzas that are hearth-baked, wood-fired, or cooked in brick ovens.

Of course with increased pizza consumption comes increased cheese demand. That's good news for the nation's dairy producers and cheese-makers. Meanwhile, the World Championship of Cheese took place recently in the dairy state. We get details in this report from the Wisconsin Milk Marketing Board.

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