Monday, March 14, 2011

Sustainability and agriculture

Check out this discussion on sustainability in agriculture. Finally, a refreshing take on defining sustainability. Click on the link above to access the site.

Monday, November 30, 2009

Cap and Trade is dead, says Inohofe.

As an elected leader of an agricultural grassroots lobbying organization, the task of the leadership is to find as much credible information about a topic before taking a position on an issue. That's easier said than done, especially when those who are entrusted with the task of researching for data are themselves manipulating the data to serve their purposes.

Now we know why that data was not only hard to come by, but what information we were able to access was not entirely convincing. It's unfortunate that this alledged massaging of data has been done by researchers, the very ones that should be trusted to carry out their work with complete integrity.

As this story unfolds, hopefully, we will be closer to the truth about climate change and its actual impact on our environment than we ever have been.

Click on the title to link to the Wall Street Journal report on the recent story.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Video from Facebook

A wheat harvest video. Scenes of wheat harvest, taken from several perspectives. Enjoy.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Nigerian Trade Team Visits Kansas Wheat Farm







The harvest crew at Penner Farms were hosts for a Nigerian trade team, during wheat harvest. In the U.S. for a short time, the team members were attending a milling science and baking short course at Kansas State's International Grains Program, located on the Northern edge of the university campus.






Here's a few pictures of the trade team, taken by Benjamin Penner and Jason Aldefer while Ben was giving rides to team members on the combine.






Saturday, May 09, 2009

Wheat making a comeback





Only two years ago on Easter weekend, mother nature awarded wheat producers with a major snowfall, followed by several days of record cold temperatures, falling well below freezing. Early morning temps hovered around 16-19 degrees F. The wheat crop in the Midwestern U.S., from Northern Kansas to North Texas was unable to withstand the cold temperatures. This production shortfall set the stage for the following year's record prices as wheat supplies plunged to historical lows.

What a difference two years makes. The wheat crop, in my part of Kansas, that is, is looking good. The news coming from the participants of the Kansas Wheat crop tour estimates the state will harvest 333 million bushels. In about six weeks, we'll be able to tell whether that number is realistic or not. My unofficial, from the gut, guesstimate..... 340+ million bushels.
Having said that, we have yet to see evidence of wheat diseases, at least in a large enough area to raise wholesale alarms. That can change in a short time, however. Compared to last year, at least in my area, fewer farmers are applying fungicides. So, if the diseases come along, the final production numbers can change, depending on how many acres are protected and whether the disease pressure is severe enough to reduce yields and quality.

Saturday, December 06, 2008

Walking through the fields on a beautiful day

One evening while scouting the fields, I could not resist recording the sunset and the sounds of the birds and insects. The month of August was unusually wet, giving an added boost to the soybeans while flowering and setting pods. Though the highway was nearly a half mile away, the sounds of the traffic was as if they were within a hundred yards, even though you cannot see the road from my vantage point.

video

It's days like this that brings joy to the soul. Peaceful, contemplative and energizing the spirit.