Following 18 months of record earnings, the U.S. ethanol industry has rebalanced in 2015. As energy prices collapsed in late 2014, so did ethanol prices and plant margins. However, ethanol's supply and demand has remained well balanced, and producers have maintained positive earnings, according to a new report from CoBank.
A few weeks ago, tar spot, a new disease of corn caused by the fungus Phyllachora maydis was reported for the first time in the US, first in Indiana and then in Illinois. It was later found as far east as Allen County, Indiana, bordering Paulding County in northwest Ohio. So, although tar spot has not yet been confirmed in Ohio, it is quite possible that it may be present in the northwestern corner of the state.
A new corn disease has been spotted in fields near the Indiana-Ohio border that, while it isn’t a big threat for growers this year, could potentially cause some concern in impacted fields next year. That is, if the fungus can survive the harsh Midwest winter.
Ohio State is in the process of updating the Tri-State Recommendations, looking specifically at N, P and K in corn, soybean and wheat. This is a major undertaking that will require a collective effort from numerous extension personnel, crop consultants and farmer cooperators.
Looking to evaluate your nitrogen fertilizer program? Take a closer at your corn stalks. End of season corn stalk testing helps give some insight into how well nitrogen fertilizer was utilized by the corn plant.
By A. Bryan Endres and Lisa Schlessinger, University of Illinois
In a February 25, 2015 update, University of Illinois professors discussed the class action lawsuit surrounding Sygenta's genetically modified (GM) corn Agrisure Viptera and Agrisure Duradade (collectively, "Agrisure") that contains the MIR 162 genetic trait. By way of background, they briefly restate some of the facts leading up to this litigation.
A recent ruling by a Kansas federal judge cleared the way for farmers, grain handlers and exporters to proceed towards trial in their suits against Syngenta claiming that the company's sale of its Viptera and Duracade corn seed interrupted trade with China and harmed the market for U.S. corn.