ACA Logo

February 23 News and Info Brief

FEBRUARY 23, 2024


EPA Issues Order Allowing Use of Existing Stocks of Dicamba for OTT Use: On Wednesday, February 14th, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued an order for certain limited sales and uses for low-volatility dicamba formulations for the 2024 crop year. The action applies to the registrations for ExtendiMax, Engenia, and Tavium. The EPA action follows the February 6th order from a federal district court order on February 6th, which ordered EPA to vacate the registration of these products. More... Read EPA Existing Stocks Order | EPA Release on Dicamba Order | UADA Summary | ArkansasOnline | Bayer Dicamba Training Weblink

USDA Created Equity Commission Calls for Farm Program Reforms: On Thursday, February 22nd, the equity commission created by USDA issued a final report that included several recommendations for policy changes aimed at addressing historical inequities and discrimination in the structure and delivery of various farm related programs. The report includes proposed commodity program reforms and other policy proposals that might be under consideration in the farm bill and within USDA. More...Agri-Pulse | Commission Reports | USDA Announcement | USDA Equity Action Plan

USDA Announces Climate Corps: At the recent National Association of Conservation Districts annual meeting, USDA Deputy Secretary Xochitl Torres Small announced a new effort to train conservation and climate leaders through President Biden’s American Climate Corps initiative. According to USDA, the Working Lands Climate Corps will provide technical training and career pathway opportunities for young people, helping them deliver economic benefits through climate-smart agriculture solutions for farmers and ranchers across the country, now and in the future. It aims to create service opportunities for more than 100 young people. More...USDA Press Release | American Climate Corps | Agri-Pulse

Secretary Vilsack Discusses Ag Policy with House Ag Committee: On Wednesday, February 14th, USDA Secretary Tom Vilsack provided testimony to the U.S. House Agriculture Committee regarding a range of agricutural topics. The hearing at times was contentious and reflective of the challenges facing Congress in developing a farm bill in closely divided Congress under significant budgetary constraints. More...Committee Hearing Webpage | SuccessfulFarming | EENews | TheHill

Appropriations Deadline Quickly Approaching: March 1 and March 8 federal government funding deadlines are rapidly approaching with no resolution yet in sight. As each day passes, Congress appears more at risk of facing a federal government shutdown. If the House and Senate fail to reach an accord on spending measures, various functions of government will be thrown in disarray until such an agreement is reached. With challenges passing bipartisan border security legislation, bipartisan tax measures, and bipartisan funding for Ukraine and Israel, it's evident that the level of dysfunction is growing. And, with mounting campaign pressures, the task of reaching agreements and passing legislation is growing more difficult in a congress divided with razor thin majorities in both the House and Senate. More...RollCall | TheHill | CNN | Axios

Crop Life America Names New CEO: Crop Life America (CLA), a non-profit advocacy organization representing agriculture seed and chemical companies on biotechnology matters, recently announced that Alexandra Dunn will serve as the organization's next CEO. Dunn is an attorney and former U.S. Enivronmental Protection Agency official. Throughout her career she's been deeply involved in environmental law and gained experience in issues affecting the agriculture industry. More...CLA Announcement | Agri-Pulse

Biden Administration Answers Multi-State Petition for Year-Round E-15: According to news reports, the Biden Administration announced on February 22nd, a new policy supporting year-round E-15 in 8 states that will begin in 2025. The rule, which will soon be published in the federal register, was in response to a petition for the waiver from the 8 states. The news was welcomed by the corn and ethanol industry, which expects the decision to enhance demand and use of corn based ethanol. More...AgWeb | Agri-Pulse | DTNPF | TheHill | EPA Announcement

WTO Ministerial Set for Next Week in Abu Dhabi (UAE): The World Trade Organization (WTO) is set to hold its 13th Ministerial Conference beginning February 26th in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emerits. Ministers from across the world will attend to review the functioning of the multilateral trading system and to take action on the future work of the WTO. As usual, agriculture trade and agriculture related policies will be an area of focus for the meeting. More...WTO Ministerial Page | WTO - Agriculture | Reuters I | Reuters II | Reuters III


Rice Farmers Encouraged to Consider Insurance Coverage: Dr. Hunter Biram, an economist with the University of Arkansas, recently published an article in Southern Ag Today in which he suggested rice farmers consider mitigating income risks in the 2024 crop year with revenue protection crop insurance coverage through Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO) and Enhanced Coverage Option (ECO) due to unlikely probability of any support from the Price Loss Coverage (PLC) program under the commodity title of the farm bill. He also encourages farmers to consider margin protection. More...SouthernAgToday | Biram Presentation (see slides slides 35, 37, 42, and 43) | MarginProtectionTool

MidSouth Farm and Gin Show on Horizon: Memphis will once again host the MidSouth Farm and Gin Show this year March 1-2. The event will be kick started on February 29th with the Southern Cotton Ginners Association Annual Meeting and Honors Banquet. The show offers highly informative presentations, seemingly endless exhibits, and excellent networking opportunities. The event draws thousands of attendees from throughout the Mid-South region and beyond. More...Show Homepage | Registration | SCGA Annual Meeting

Arkansas Department of Ag Accepting Century Farm Applications Through May 31: The Arkansas Department of Agriculture is now accepting applications for the 2024 Arkansas Century Farm Program. This program recognizes Arkansas families who have owned and farmed the same land for at least 100 years. The program is voluntary and there is no cost to apply. More...Century Farm Homepage | News Release

Barber named interim AVP for agriculture, natural resources for extension service: On Tuesday, February 13th, the University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture announced that it has hired Dr. Tom Barber to serve as assistant vice president for agriculture and natural resources for extension service. This is a position made available following the retirement of Dr. Vic Ford. Barber, an extension weed scientist and director of the Jackson County Extension Center, will step into the role on Feb. 26. More... UA News Release

Arkansas Ag Hall of Fame Soon to Induct New Class: The Arkansas Ag Hall of Fame will induct 6 new names at its annual luncheon ceremony March 1. Inductees include the late Dr. George Berger; Dr. Fred Bourland; Dr. Mark Cochran; the late Melvin Daniel; Dr. Charles Looney; and Gary Sitzer. The Arkansas Ag Hall of Fam aims to honor those who have made significant contributions to Arkansas agriculture, as well as community and economic development. Please contact if interested in sitting at the Ag Council table. More...Announcement | Induction Luncheon Information | Tickets

UofA Division of Ag Seeks Input for Strategic Plan: The University of Arkansas System's Division of Agriculture conducts important and valuable research and extension for Arkansans through the Agricultural Experiment Station and the Cooperative Extension Service. This year they are working to shape a new five-year strategic plan. As they embark on that process they invite the public to share thoughts regarding important issues and trends the Division of Agriculture should address over the next five to six years through our research and extension program. More...UADA Announcement | Survey Link

UofA Division of Ag Offering Training on Moisture Sensors and Surge Valves: The University of Arkansas System's Division of Agriculture is offering a training session for farmers and irrigation operators to help educate users of best practices related to surge irrigation methods and soil moisture sensors. The two daylong sessions will be held Feb. 27 at the Reynolds Center in Paragould and March 5 at the Northeast Research and Extension Center at Keiser. More...UADA Announcement ​​​​ | 2023 Most Crop per Drop Winners

UofA Division of Ag Reminds Farmers on Solar Deadlines: The University of Arkansas System's Division of Agriculture recently issued a news release reminding farmers and landowners of impending deadlines that will effect the economics of solar substantially in Arkansas. The deadlines include grant applications with USDA for Rural Energy for America Program grants and project completion timelines for grandfathered net-metering rates. More...UADA Announcement | ArkansasOnline | Solar Decision Tool

UofA Division of Ag Accepting Applications for Future Ag Leader Program: Registration for the 2024 Arkansas Future Ag Leaders Tour is now open for college undergraduate juniors and seniors enrolled in colleges of agriculture or pursuing agriculture-related majors within the state of Arkansas. There is no cost to participate, however the class is limited to 50 students. More...UADA Announcement | Registration Link

Arkansas Farmers to Have Options for Conservation Funding with New Climate Programs: Arkansas farmers will have multiple options to seek out funding incentives for conservation programs deemed to be "climate smart" through grants issued from USDA to various agriculture organizations and enterprises. The grants were part of a Climate Smart Commodity Program established by USDA with use of funds from the Commodity Credit Corporation. Practices such as alternate wetting and drying and furrow irrigation in rice will provide payment opportunities as well as no-till and cover crops for other commodities. Additional practices are also eligible. For cotton farmers, enrolling acres in the industry's U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol program also offers payment opportunities. Some application windows have already opened while others are expected in coming days and weeks, but they are not expected to be open long. More...Climate Smart Cotton | Climate Smart Rice | Winrock/Riceland Foods Program | AgriCapture | Rice-Tec SmartRice | Alliance for CS Ag | More Arkansas Related CSAF Opportunities | USDA CSAF Homepage

National Ag Law Center Hosting Webinar on Corporate Transparency Act: The National Ag Law Center is set to host a webinar on March 20th that provides an overview to a new federal mandate for all businesses that will require new ownership disclosure information to the federal government. Failure to comply with this new law can result in severe fines. The new law was established by Congress as an effort to mitigate risks of money laundering and other corrupt business activities, including tax evasion. More...Webinar Information | Registration Link

Enrollment Open for Cotton Sustainability Programs: The U.S. Cotton Trust Protocol (USCTP), the U.S. cotton industry's sustainability initiative is currently accepting enrollment of cotton producers for the 2024 crop year and bales from the 2023 crop. Included in this year's application process is the opportunity to participate in the Climate Smart Cotton Program, which provides financial and technical assistance to farmers for participating in an advanced level of the protocol. Key deadlines include a March 1 deadline to enter data and upload bales from the 2023 crop and an April 30th deadline to enroll in the Trust Protocol and apply for the Climate Smart Program. More...Cotton Grower Magazine | Farm Progress | AgWired | USCTP Enrollment Link

Save the Date! Ag Council Sets Dates for 2024 Board of Director Meetings: The Ag Council of Arkansas has set dates for its upcoming board of directors meetings this year. The meetings are open to Ag Council board of directors and invited guests. Other Ag Council members and sponsors are welcome to attend general sessions of these meetings provided they notify staff of their plans to attend in advance of the meetings. Spring Meeting: Tuesday, May 14 at the Lon Mann Cotton Research Station in Marianna; Summer Meeting:Thursday, August 15 at the Northeast Arkansas Rice Research and Extension Center in Greenfield; Annual Meeting: Thursday and Friday, December 12-13 at the Capital Hotel in Little Rock

Farmers Encouraged to Use FireSmart App for Crop Residue Burns: Arkansas farmers are encouraged to download and utilize the new FireSmart App to help farmers comply with voluntary smoke management guidelines prior to conducting crop residue field burning following harvest. The smart phone application is aimed at helping farmers check conditions and report prescribed burns to ensure minimal impact when conducting this important practice. More...FireSmartApp | Voluntary Smoke Management Guidelines

Members Encouraged to Apply for Service on State Boards and Commissions: We strongly encourage Ag Council members to apply for public service on various agriculture related state boards and commissions which serve important roles for our industry. We stand ready to help our members navigate the application and appointment process. More... | Application Portal | Office of Governor Homepage

Additional Arkansas Ag Resources:
USDA Daily Arkansas Grain Bids
Arkansas Department of Ag Calendar
Ag Council Leadership Opportunities
Apply for Service on State Boards & Commissions
USDA NRCS Arkansas Offices
USDA County Cash Rent Estimates
Arkansas Crops Update
UADA Crop Budgets
UADA Verification Information
Arkansas Row Crop Risk Management
Pine Tree Discoloration & Mortality Reporting
Feral Hog Task Force
2023 Arkansas Grown Publication
Digital Edition of Delta Farm Press
H-2A Guidebook by Congressman Crawford
Arkansas Ag Hall of Fame March 1
MidSouth Farm & Gin Show March 1-2


USDA NASS Releases Ag Census Results: On Tuesday, February 13th, USDA National Agriculture Statistics Service (NASS) issued its 2022 Census of Agriculture data. The USDA Ag Census includes a wide set of data points relating to rural America and production agriculture in the United States. Primary among the data was that the average age of farmers has once again risen, and the number of farms in the United States continues to shrink. The next report will be based on data collected in 2027. More...NASS Press Release | NASS AR Press Release | USDA Ag Census | Report Index

Cotton Council Annual Meeting Brings in New Leaders: On February 16-18, the National Cotton Council (NCC) held its annual meeting in Orlando, Florida. The meeting, which brought together all segments of the U.S. cotton industry from across the United States, consisted of a wide range of committee gatherings and information sessions. The meeting also provided opportunties for leadership rotations, which included the conclusion of Ag Council President, Nathan Reed's term as Chairman of the American Cotton Producers (ACP). Reed will continue to serve as a Mid-South region producer director for the ACP. Joe Nicosia, a cotton merchant with Louis Dreyfus Company from Memphis, will serve as Chairman of the NCC. More...NCC I I NCC II | NCC III | NCC Planting Intentions Survey Result | NCC World Cotton Economic Outlook Report | More NCC News Releases

DTN Market Insights: Commodity Market Info

The RiceStuff Podcast: 2.13.24 Climate Smart Commodity Grants

USDA February Processing Reports:
- Cotton System
- Fats & Oils
- Flour Milling
- Grain Crushings
- Cotton Ginnings
- Peanut Prices

Arkansas Economic Profile: 2023 Pocket Facts - News | USDA Arkansas Ag Economic Overview | Arkansas Ag Census Data | Arkansas Historical Data | Arkansas Farms & Land Report | Arkansas Land Values & Cash Rent Report
Arkansas Farm Labor Report

UofA Crop Updates | UofA Land Grant Research & Extension Service Video

Contribute to our PAC! ​​ (Donor Form)​

Contribute to our Presidents' Scholarship! (Donor Form)

Newsletter Sign-up Link: