NEWS STORIES

OCTOBER 2015

(Posted Fri. Oct 30th, 2015)

For the third year in a row, Texas Corn Producers is teaming up with American Ethanol at the Texas Motor Speedway in Fort Worth. On November 6 through 8, American Ethanol will be top of mind with NASCAR fans coming to watch a full weekend of high-powered racing.   “This event mixes education, promotion and good, old fashioned fun for fans,” said Jon Holzfaster, Chairman of the National Corn Growers Association’s NASCAR Advisory Committee and a farmer from Paxton, Neb. “Texas Speedway puts on one of the largest races of its kind in the nation, and Texas Corn Producers play a key role in making sure American Ethanol has exposure to match.”   Fans will have multiple opportunities to engage with American Ethanol over the weekend. It all starts with a campground promotion for fans, a...

(Posted Fri. Oct 30th, 2015)

The National Corn Growers Association now offers its fifth season of Field Notes, a series that takes readers behind the farm gate to follow the year in the life of American farm families. While these growers come from diverse geographic areas and run unique operations, they share a common love for U.S. agriculture and the basic values that underpin life in farming communities.   Today, Field Notes checked in with Iowa farmer April Hemmes. Recently having finished harvest, Hemmes reports that yields reached record territory in her area. Yet, while the work of growing corn may have finished, she has many tasks ahead of her over the coming months.   “I don’t know if we just live in a golden spot in north central Iowa, but we had incredibly good yields this year,” said...

(Posted Thu. Oct 29th, 2015)

Keywords: Ethanol

Fuels America will launch a seven-figure TV and digital ad campaign Friday morning depicting President Obama’s choice of who to listen to when it comes to the Renewable Fuel Standard: his own experts who have repeatedly shown that ethanol and renewable fuel is dramatically reducing carbon emissions, or the oil industry, which has spent decades covering up the science and facts on both renewable fuel and climate science.   “It’s absurd that oil companies are feigning concern over America’s climate after over a century of oil spills, pollution, and harm to our environment and public health,” said Chip Bowling, President of the National Corn Growers Association. “The truth is that slashing the amount of clean,...

(Posted Thu. Oct 29th, 2015)

National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling today released the following statement regarding the election of Paul Ryan as Speaker of the House of Representatives:   “We congratulate Speaker Ryan on his election and wish him the best of luck. In his speech today, Speaker Ryan called the House ‘broken’ and urged his colleagues to come together, re-establish order and find unity and common ground. We hope Congress will heed the advice of their new leader. It’s time to get back on the path of doing the people’s business. From reforming our tax code to finding long-term solutions for our nation’s roads and bridges, there is important work to do. We ask Congress to take Speaker Ryan’s words to heart. Let’s wipe the slate clean, put aside partisan differences and commit to moving our country forward together.”

(Posted Wed. Oct 28th, 2015)

Keywords: Ethanol

The National Corn Growers Association today hailed U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack’s announcement of $100 million in grants for the Biofuel Infrastructure Partnership, to double the number of biofuel fuel pumps across 21 states.   “This is a big win for both corn farmers and consumers,” NCGA President Chip Bowling, a Maryland farmer, said. “Fuel choice is important to consumers, and investing in our biofuel infrastructure will help ensure they have access to a stable supply of ethanol that is American-grown, renewable and affordable.   “While we celebrate this program, we will continue to push the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to uphold the statutory volumes of ethanol required under the Renewable Fuel Standard. With more pumps coming online, it’s important...

(Posted Wed. Oct 28th, 2015)

Keywords: Biotechnology

As the Take Action educational campaign continues to evolve and grow, Take Action has partnered with the Weed Science Society of America to create a series of infographics that help farmers make informed herbicide-management decisions.   Those resources newly added to the online tool kit include:  Economics of Herbicide Resistance illustrates the benefits of proactive resistance management, specifically with horseweed, and how proactive management can substantially increase farm profits long-term. Field Identification and Control of Suspected Herbicide-Resistant Weeds walks farmers though what resistance looks like, what causes herbicide failure and what farmers should be doing now if they suspect herbicide resistance. Best Management Practices for Herbicide Resistance walks...

(Posted Tue. Oct 27th, 2015)

Keywords: farm policy

National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling, a corn farmer from Newburg, Maryland, issued the following statement in response to a proposed $3 billion cut in crop insurance support as part of a national budget deal.   “Slashing the federal crop insurance program is bad policy. The 2014 farm bill provides farmers with a critical safety net, the cornerstone of which is the federal crop insurance program. Cuts to the crop insurance program will lead to fewer insurance providers and agents, and that means fewer choices for farmers to manage their risk.   “This deal is yet another attempt to reopen the farm bill, despite major reforms and $23 billion in budget savings. Agriculture remains the only industry that has voluntarily accepted spending reductions. We stand...

(Posted Tue. Oct 27th, 2015)

Only days remain to apply for the third class of the NCGA DuPont New Leaders Program.  Apply by the October 30 deadline to be a part of this innovative program, designed for corn growers who are newly active or considering involvement in agriculture leadership, that helps build communications skills and increases the personal effectiveness of agvocates.   Ideal participants will be farming couples or individuals from NCGA’s affiliated states, particularly those considering (or new to) a board position. Those interested must be at least 21 years of age, active in corn farming, NCGA members and not currently serving as an officer on their state affiliate board.   “The program has encouraged me to be more involved to make a difference,” said Michael Howlett, a New York...

(Posted Mon. Oct 26th, 2015)

Keywords: Conservation

Tim Smith remembers driving a Model G two-cylinder tractor to plow his family’s farm in North Central Iowa. Today, still farming that same land, he is a leader in adopting advanced agricultural practices to improve soil health. Doing so protects the water that ends up in the Gulf of Mexico.   In recognition of his commitment to adopting new practices and teaching others, Smith received the White House Champions of Change award today in Washington. The Soil Health Partnership and Iowa Soybean Association nominated Smith, who also is a member of the National Corn Growers Association and, in 2014, was NCGA’s inaugural Good Steward Recognition recipient.   “American agriculture is more advanced and efficient than ever, but making deeper changes in the...

(Posted Fri. Oct 23rd, 2015)

The National Corn Growers Association now offers its fifth season of Field Notes, a series that takes readers behind the farm gate to follow the year in the life of American farm families. While these growers come from diverse geographic areas and run unique operations, they share a common love for U.S. agriculture and the basic values that underpin life in farming communities.   This week, Field Notes caught up with farmers from Maryland and Indiana, to get opinions on the 2015 corn crop as harvest draws to a close. While USDA estimates a national average yield of 168 bushels per acre, which would be the second-highest on record, the farms featured this week have not seen corn yields in line with that number. From hurricane issues in Maryland to continuing...

(Posted Fri. Oct 23rd, 2015)

The National Corn Growers Association took part in a two-day tour organized by the River Resources Action Team to examine a variety of regulatory, ecosystem and river-based transportation issues on the Mississippi River this week. NCGA National Corn Yield Contest and Sustainability Manager Rachel Orf participated in the activities, which included a floating barge tour with multiple site visits and presentations by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, state department of natural resources representatives and staff from the Upper Mississippi River Basic Association, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the Audubon Society.   “There was a wide array of topics covered, and we discussed many of the issues impacting growers and river transportation at length,” said...

(Posted Fri. Oct 23rd, 2015)

The National Corn Growers Association Director of Research Dr. Richard Vierling addressed a standing room only crowd at Tennessee State University, a historically black college, on grower-driven business development and entrepreneurship. The audience, which included a group that traveled from Alabama A&M for the presentation, included undergrad and graduate students focused in areas such as genotyping assays, plant breeding and new uses.   “It was great to meet with such an enthusiastic group of young scientists interested in focusing their careers in agriculture,” said Vierling. “Advances in the lab become products that can really help farmers in the field. By reaching out to the researchers of tomorrow, we build a better future for our industry too.”   During the visit, Vierling built...

(Posted Wed. Oct 21st, 2015)

Keywords: Biotechnology

The National Corn Growers Association urged the Senate to act quickly to pass a uniform, national food labeling standard in light of today’s Senate Agriculture Committee hearing, highlighting the safety of genetically modified ingredients and the importance of biotechnology.   “NCGA and Congress agree: consumers should have access to food choices that are safe, nutritious, abundant and affordable,” said NCGA Trade Policy and Biotechnology Action Team Chair John Linder,  a farmer from Edison, Ohio. “Congress, and only Congress, can now prevent a costly and confusing patchwork of state labeling laws from taking effect next year. The Senate must act now to avoid the negative consequences inaction will surely bring for consumers and farmers across the country.”   Experts told the...

Corn Growers Bring Ethanol Education to Sunbelt Ag Expo

(Posted Wed. Oct 21st, 2015)

Working with the Georgia Corn Growers Association, leadership of the National Corn Growers Association is attending the Sunbelt Ag Expo in Moultrie, Ga., this week to talk about the 2015 corn harvest, the importance of building market demand for growers and how corn farmers are sustainably feeding and fueling the world.   This is the second time NCGA has had a presence at the popular Southern farm show, which has 1,200 exhibitors over 100 acres and includes a 600-acre demonstration farm. The Southeast states, from Texas to Maryland, include nearly 50,000 farms growing about 1.2 billion bushels of corn on more than 9 million acres.    “We really wanted to come into the southern Corn Belt and meet with more of our corn farmers and make sure they understand what NCGA is and what we...

American Ethanol No. 3 Car Clocked Fastest at Kansas Speedway

(Posted Tue. Oct 20th, 2015)

During last Sunday's Hollywood Casino 400 at Kansas Speedway, the American Ethanol No. 3 car was recorded as the fastest on the track. “We had a really fast American Ethanol Chevrolet. I was catching everybody in front of us,” said driver Austin Dillon.   However, speed was not enough to win the race. After holding on to the fifth position for 20 laps, Dillon cut a right front tire and destroyed his No. 3 American Ethanol Chevy on Lap 155.   Even though the No. 3 car didn’t make it into the winner’s circle this race, the performance of NASCAR’s fuel Sunoco Green E15 continues to demonstrate its benefit at the track.   In a Motor Racing Network interview with announcing team Jeff Striegle, Joe Moore and Rusty Wallace, CEO of Kansas Corn Growers Association Greg Krissek told...

(Posted Tue. Oct 20th, 2015)

The U.S. Department of Transportation announced Monday afternoon that recreational users of unmanned aerial systems, or drones, must register their systems with the federal government. The following is a statement from National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling, a farmer from Newburg, Maryland, regarding this announcement.   “As with any technology, unmanned aerial systems will make our farms safer, more efficient and more environmentally friendly. That’s good for farmers, good for consumers and good for the environment. We support reasonable rules and regulations to govern UAS technology. Most farmers who use a drone will do so over open cropland in rural areas, far away from airports or large population centers. We hope the Federal Aviation Administration will recognize...

(Posted Mon. Oct 19th, 2015)

Harvest progress pushed ahead of the five-year average this week according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported today. With 59 percent of the crop harvested as of Sunday, ranging from 93 percent of the Tennessee crop to 25 percent of Colorado, total progress moved ahead of the five-year average by five percentage points.   “As corn farmers continue to work diligently, pushing harvest forward, the general understanding of the 2015 corn crop continues to deepen,” said NCGA President Chip Bowling, a grower from Maryland. “At this time, the national average yield is estimated to be the second-largest on record. While a decreased forecast for harvested acres balances the added production, America’s corn farmers clearly produce an abundance. At NCGA, we continuously work...

(Posted Fri. Oct 16th, 2015)

The National Corn Growers Association now offers its fifth season of Field Notes, a series that takes readers behind the farm gate to follow the year in the life of American farm families. While these growers come from diverse geographic areas and run unique operations, they share a common love for U.S. agriculture and the basic values that underpin life in farming communities.   Today, Field Notes checked in with Iowa farmer April Hemmes. While sitting in the cab of her combine, Hemmes explained that, with only 30 acres of corn left to harvest, she is seeing some of the best yields of her life.   “I have been farming for 30 years, and these are the best yields that I have ever seen on my farm,” said Hemmes. “The weather cooperated with us, and we didn’t get the big rains that hit...

(Posted Fri. Oct 16th, 2015)

The Corn Farmers Coalition, a joint program of the National Corn Growers Association and its state affiliates, was recognized for marketing effectiveness with the Summit International Platinum Award in the Public Service/Advocacy category. This award recognizes and rewards companies for innovative and leading-edge creative work that uses strategy and results-based effectiveness to create solutions in today’s marketplace.   “We are honored to receive this prestigious award, particularly for the work done in the summer of 2015,” said NCGA Senior Communications Manager Mark Lambert. “When we first heard that we would not be able to continue placing our work in DC Metro stations due to outside political circumstances, we grew concerned about our reach. Through the dedication of the team to...

(Posted Thu. Oct 15th, 2015)

As combines roll in the fields, the National Corn Growers Association reminds entrants that online harvest forms for the 2015 National Corn Yield Contest are now available. While the harvest information form deadline may seem distant, entrants are asked to report within seven business days of their final yield check or by Nov. 20, whichever comes first.   “With harvest well underway nationwide, we ask contest applicants to submit harvest forms within one week of their final yield check to allow NCGA staff adequate time to thoroughly review each form,” said Production and Stewardship Action Team Chair Brent Hoestetler, a farmer from Ohio. “The National Corn Yield Contest plays a significant role in recognizing excellence and finding new, more productive techniques. We hope that...

(Posted Thu. Oct 15th, 2015)

The National Corn Growers Association Nominating Committee is now accepting applications from members for the 2017 Corn Board.  Through the Corn Board, members can become an integral part of the organization’s leadership.  Click here for the application, which provides complete information on requirements, responsibilities and deadlines.   “Through my years on the Corn Board, I have enjoyed working with the talented, dedicated volunteers who step forward to lead this organization,” said NCGA Chairman and Nominating Committee Chair Martin Barbre. “The willingness of farmers to step forward as volunteer leaders is crucial to NCGA’s continued success. A true grassroots organization, NCGA relies upon farmers to volunteer for leadership, helping to shape policy and drive efforts. Serving on...

(Posted Thu. Oct 15th, 2015)

As combines roll through fields across the country, the National Corn Growers Association reminds photographers to help tell the story of farming field corn in America through the first annual Fields-of-Corn Photo Contest. Through this contest, NCGA hopes to capture high-resolution photos of corn growth at every stage from seed to harvest and the families that grow it. Interested participants will be able to submit multiple entries until November 30, 2015, so don’t miss an opportunity to share the full range of your 2015 corn crop experience.   Open to all, the Fields-of-Corn photo contest offers a free opportunity for photographers to share their work while competing for a $500 grand prize. Entries will also be considered for prizes with cash awards for the top three...

(Posted Wed. Oct 14th, 2015)

The following is a joint article from Suzy Friedman, director of agricultural sustainability for the Environmental Defense Fund, and Max Starbuck, director of market development for the National Corn Growers Association.   Today, a diverse group of more than 400 businesses, associations, government agencies, science organizations, academic institutions and non-profit organizations released the first-ever report card evaluating the condition of one of our nation’s most storied and central waterways. This effort, known as America’s Watershed Initiative, was undertaken to provide information on the challenges facing the waters and lands that make up the 31-state Mississippi River Watershed and the 250 rivers that flow into it.   Click here for more information on the report...

(Posted Tue. Oct 13th, 2015)

Harvest is progressing nearly exactly on schedule according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported today. With 42 percent of the crop was harvested as of Sunday, ranging from 88 percent of the North Carolina crop to 15 percent of Colorado’s and North Dakota’s, total progress came with in one percentage point of the five-year average.   “While estimates of the crop in the northern regions of the Corn Belt could still shift as harvest gets further underway, we can now see a clearer picture of the 2015 corn grown over much of the country,” said NCGA President Chip Bowling, a grower from Maryland. “Despite difficulties with early season flooding, the overall crop is on track to have the second-highest national average yield on record. At NCGA, we continuously work to grow demand for this sustainable,...

(Posted Fri. Oct 9th, 2015)

A second month of decreased production estimates resulted in another increased forecast for the corn price paid to farmers according U.S. Department of Agriculture reports released today. While the national average yield projections were raised by half of a bushel per acre, decreased projections for both planted and harvested area impacted production and supply figures and, given steady demand projections, raised price estimates for the 2015/2016 corn crop.   “With corn harvest more than a quarter complete across the country, we are beginning to get a clear vision of what the final crop might look like but, as much of the northern Corn Belt has yet to harvest, things could still change,” said National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling, a farmer from Newburg,...

(Posted Fri. Oct 9th, 2015)

Keywords: Production Conservation

Today the United States Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit stayed the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Waters of the U.S. (WOTUS) rule nationwide, pending further review by the court.   Chip Bowling, president of the National Corn Growers Association and a farmer from Newburg, Maryland, issued the following statement:   “Today’s decision is great news for America’s farmers and ranchers. WOTUS was supposed to make things clearer for farmers about their responsibilities under the Clean Water Act. This rule is anything but clear. We are confident that the courts will eventually strike down EPA’s WOTUS rule altogether. The Army Corps of Engineers has already said the rule is not based on science or law and is unlikely to withstand a legal challenge.   “But court battles take months, if...

(Posted Thu. Oct 8th, 2015)

As the second round of NASCAR’s championship series begins this weekend, the competition heats up and so does the attention focused on American Ethanol. With E15 American Ethanol featured on the side of every car and on the start/re-start green flag, few sponsors in the sport have this broad exposure. It’s a great place to be to show millions of fans that E15 works.   Only 12 drivers remain eligible and have a shot at winning the Sprint Cup trophy entering the Bank of America 500, which airs at 6 p.m. CT Saturday at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Like the other 32 drivers rounding out the field who are not Chase eligible, American Ethanol driver Austin Dillon continues to drive for his first win of the season.   Dillon, one of the hottest young drivers in the sport, has championships in the...

(Posted Thu. Oct 8th, 2015)

Farmers from the National Corn Growers Association and the National Farmers Union announced the release of a wh ite paper today on how the EPA’s proposed rule on the Renewable Fuel Standard is threatening farm income and rural economies across the United States.   On the call, farmers and agriculture leaders spoke to the harm that uncertainties surrounding the renewable fuel volume standards are causing to America’s hardworking farmers and ranchers. You can listen to a recording of the call here.   NCGA President Chip Bowling said, “Our country’s farmers and biofuels producers have met the challenges of the RFS, investing in renewable fuel production and creating jobs in rural America that can’t be outsourced to other countries....

(Posted Wed. Oct 7th, 2015)

Representatives of the National Corn Growers Association were on Capitol Hill Thursday to urge Congress to pass a uniform national labeling standard for foods made with genetically modified organisms.   The fly-in, organized by the Coalition for Safe Affordable Food, included 125 representatives from the entirety of the nation’s food supply chain, from farmers to food companies. Farmers and state staffers from the Indiana Corn Growers Association, Minnesota Corn Growers Association, and Ohio Corn and Wheat Growers Association joined NCGA in the effort.   “With farming such a vital piece of Minnesota’s economy, I was excited by the opportunity to discuss why a uniform, national food labeling standard makes sense for Minnesota farmers today,” said Anna Boroff, public policy director...

(Posted Wed. Oct 7th, 2015)

On September 17, the Environmental Protection Agency and the Army Corps of Engineers hosted a closed webinar with agency personnel to address 27 questions regarding the final Waters of the U.S. rule. This week, the National Corn Growers Association joined 15 other agricultural groups requesting that EPA and the Corps to make public the answers to those questions.    “It’s unfair to communicate to regulators on how to identify a WOTUS under the new rule, but not also share that information with the farmers and ranchers who are being regulated, and who bear all the risks and liabilities that come with it,” said NCGA President Chip Bowling.   “From the beginning, we have been asking for clarity and certainty about farmers’ obligations under the Clean Water Act. It only makes sense that...

(Posted Tue. Oct 6th, 2015)

The National Corn Growers Association reminds farmers of the importance of proper grain bin safety procedures this harvest. With farmers across the country busy in their fields, NCGA is again offering a video highlighting the importance of proper safety procedures and reviewing helpful guidelines.   To view the video, click here. While supplies last, a free DVD of the video can be requested by sending an email with your name and mailing address to corninfo@ncga.com. The video was co-produced with the National Grain and Feed Foundation, the research and education arm of the National Grain and Feed Association.   First released in 2011, this video remains relevant and illustrates the significant threat bin entrapment can pose.  Shot on location in several states, it provides a wide range of...

(Posted Mon. Oct 5th, 2015)

The following is a statement from National Corn Growers Association President Chip Bowling, a farmer from Newburg, Maryland, regarding today’s announcement about the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement.   “NCGA is pleased that an agreement has been reached in the Trans-Pacific Partnership negotiations. We are hopeful that this agreement continues the tradition of past free trade agreements, which have had a positive impact for America’s farmers and ranchers. In the coming weeks, we will carefully examine the agreement to determine whether it is in the best interests of America’s corn farmers. The Asia-Pacific region represents 40 percent of the world’s economy, a huge opportunity for American agriculture. The United States Trade Representative has promised a high-standard,...

(Posted Fri. Oct 2nd, 2015)

Keywords: sustainability

The National Corn Growers Association took part in an important conversation on resistance management, at the Global Weed Symposium held in Paris, France. During the four-day meeting, which was hosted by Bayer CropScience and brought together leading academics, government officials, industry leaders and representation from grower-led associations, NCGA President Chip Bowling highlighted the growing weed resistance issues as personally witnessed on his Maryland farm as part of a panel discussion with researchers from the United States and Brazil.   Through discussions, it became clear that farmers face similar challenges across the globe in this area. With diverse participation inclusive of areas where biotechnology is and is not available, the participants found common...

(Posted Fri. Oct 2nd, 2015)

Keywords: biotechnology

Representatives from MAIZALL, an international maize alliance that includes the National Corn Growers Association, were in Europe this week to engage key European Union stakeholders on issues concerning biotechnology, market access and agricultural sustainability.   “Europe remains a challenge on biotechnology and market access but even in Europe, there is support – especially in the livestock and feed industries – for progress on these key issues,” said Sergio Bortolozzo, president of MAIZALL. “The EU is also very concerned with environmental sustainability, and biotechnology is one of the biggest tools we have to reduce the environmental footprint of agriculture. “MAIZALL allows the three major corn exporting countries of the Americas to speak with one voice on these...

(Posted Thu. Oct 1st, 2015)

Keywords: ethanol

By a vote of 7-15, the Senate Committee on Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs soundly rejected an amendment offered today by Sen. Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) to eliminate corn ethanol from the Renewable Fuel Standard. NCGA President Chip Bowling, a farmer from Newburg, Maryland, issued the following statement in response to the vote:   “Today, fifteen senators sent a strong message to the rest of the Senate: The RFS works. Today, America has cleaner air, greater energy independence, and stronger rural economies – all because of the Renewable Fuel Standard. Senator Toomey’s amendment would have taken America backwards. His amendment would have taken away consumers’ choices at the gas pump, increased our dependence on foreign oil, and left farmers and renewable fuel producers with less certainty in...