University of Illinois Weed Science Site
The new website pulls together material on research, extension,
and teaching as well as resource and reference items. The latter,
in turn, leads to a wide selection of links ranging from other
university weed science web pages to industry sources and professional
Report 2003-07: Understanding USDA Corn and Soybean Production
Forecasts: An Overview of Methods, Performance and Market Impacts
(updated January 2004)
The purpose of this report is to improve understanding of USDA
crop forecasting methods, performance and market impact. A review
of USDA's forecasting procedures and methodology confirmed the
objectivity and consistency of the forecasting process over time.
No changes in methodology occurred in 2003. Month-to-month changes
in corn and soybean production forecasts from 1970 through 2003
indicated little difference in magnitude and direction of monthly
changes over time. USDA production forecast errors were largest
in August and smaller in subsequent forecasts. There appeared
to be no trend in the size or direction of forecast errors over
On average, USDA corn production forecasts were more accurate
than private market forecasts over 1970-2003, with the exception
of August forecasts since the mid-1980s. Private market forecasts
in soybeans were more accurate than USDA forecasts for August,
regardless of the time period considered. As the growing season
progresses the USDA's relative accuracy in soybeans improved.
USDA corn production forecasts had the largest impact on corn
futures prices in August and recent price reactions have been
somewhat larger than historical reactions. For soybeans, the largest
reactions in futures prices occurred in August and September,
but recent reactions have been large in October. Overall, the
analysis suggests the USDA performs reasonably well in generating
crop production forecasts for corn and soybeans.
New Resource for Pork Producers on Influenza
Dr. Christopher W. Olsen, University of Wisconsin-Madison
The Pork Checkoff has developed a new fact sheet on influenza,
titled INFLUENZA: People, Pigs and Public Health. This fact sheet
addresses a variety of aspects of the influenza virus, including
its zoonotic characteristics and safety on the farm for pork producers
and employees. Because pigs are susceptible to both mammalian
and avian influenza viruses, they can serve as an intermediary
from birds to people. This fact sheet can be found by going to
the website and once there following these steps: Producer/Public
Health to Publications to Fact Sheets to Influenza: People, Pigs
and Public Health.
This new 2-sided fact sheet by the National Pest Alert (U.S.)
includes color photos and a discussion on the distribution and
transmission, host range, symptoms and development, management
recommendations, and collection procedures of soybean aphids.
The 2004 IFARM Premium Calculator
The 2004 IFARM Premium Calculator provides premiums for six
products across a range of coverage levels for 12 Midwestern states.
Prices and volatilities for revenue products will not be known
for certain until the beginning of March. These factors will be
updated periodically as more information becomes available.
The 2004 IFARM Crop Insurance Evaluator
The Evaluator aids farmers in making sound crop insurance decisions
by showing the risk reductions and costs associated with different
multi-peril crop insurance products. Users of the Evaluator choose
a crop and county. The Evaluator then presents tables and graphs
showing the farmer-paid premiums, average payments, net costs,
values-at-risk, and frequency of payouts of different insurance
payments for an example farm in the chosen county. Tables are
available for Illinois, Indiana, and Iowa.
Compendium of Herbicide Adjuvants
Developed by Bryan Young, SIU-Carbondale, this compendium has
recently revised complete information on adjuvant products available
on the market.
The Herbicide Resistance Website
The most recent list of herbicide resistant weeds worldwide
included: 284 resistant biotypes, 171 species (102 dicots and
69 monocots), in more than 270,000 fields worldwide. This site
monitors the identification of herbicide resistant weeds and their
potential impact on agricultural production. The site is searchable
by weed scientific or common name, or herbicide mode of action.
For further information contact: I. Heap, International Survey
of Herbicide Resistant Weeds, PO Box 1365, Corvallis, OR 97339,
USA, 541-929-6636, IanHeap@weedsmart.com.
Conducting a Successful Timber Sale (GWQ036)
This publication outlines seven steps to successfully sell timber.
Wheat: Insect Pests and Diseases
Originally published as a field handbook by the International
Maize and Wheat Improvement Center it is now available on the
web: The original was designed "as a quick guide for identifying
wheat and triticale diseases in the field," plus insect pests,
nematodes, and physiologic and genetic disorders.
U.S. Regulatory Agencies Unified Biotechnology Website
This website provides information about the U.S. oversight system
for products of modern biotechnology. It includes information
on the roles of the regulatory agencies and links to relevant
statutes and regulations. There is a searchable database containing
information on all genetically engineered crop plants intended
for food or feed that have completed the recommended or required
reviews for food, feed, or planting use in the United States.
Construction of the website and database has been a joint effort
undertaken by the Department of State (DOS), the U.S. Department
of Agriculture (USDA), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),
the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Geological
Survey (USGS). For more information contact Eddie G. Gouge, Federal
Relations - Food and Agricultural Sciences/CARET, (202) 478-602,
Proceedings: 6th International Bioherbicide Group (IBG)
A global alliance of research scientists and others who actively
investigate, develop, and foster the application of biological
herbicides. Abstracts of papers presented at the IBG workshop
held in April 2003 in Canberra, AUSTRALIA are posted. For more
information contact M. Vurro, editor, Maurizio.Vurro@ispa.cnr.it
Best Environmental Management Practices: Farm Animal
Production, Michigan State University
- Inspecting Your Confined Feeding Operation (E2823)
- Emergency Planning for the Farm: Livestock Operations (E2575S)
- Comprehensive Nutrient Management Plans (E2819)
- Manure Nutrient Recycling (E2826)
- Odor Control Options for Confined Feeding Operations (E2828)
- Building Good Neighbor Relations (E2818)
- Manure Applicator Calibration (E2825)
- Land Application of Manure and Environmentally Sensitive
Field Characteristics (E2821)
- Feeding Strategies to Lower N and P in Manure (E2822)
- Disposal of Farm Medical Wastes (E2829)
- Land Application Records and Sampling (E2824)
- Mortality Management (E2827)
Greener Pastures: Is Grazing Right for Your Operation?
Is grazing right for you: This booklet outlines questions to
Rain Gardens: A Household Way to Improve Water Quality
A guide to utilizing the rainwater from your roof.
This monthly magazine for businesses selling farm products overseas
provides tips on exporting, descriptions of markets with the greatest
sales potential, and information on export assistance available
from the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The audience is U.S.
agricultural producers, exporters, trade organizations, state
departments of agriculture and any other export-oriented organization.
Wind Powering America
This site contains lots of useful information including state
wind maps, small wind consumer's guides, wind workshops and more.
Visit the "Regional Activities" section to read news
articles, press releases and fact sheets for the area of your
Traceability in the U.S. Food Supply
U.S. ranchers, farmers, food manufacturers, and distributors
have a number of reasons to keep records tracking food production
and distribution. These records provide information on the flow
of food and food products throughout the U.S. food supply system
and aid in tracking food to its source. This Briefing Room examines
the development of food tracking systems in the United States.
Trends in the U.S. Sheep Industry, 2004
This report reviews the economic trends in the U.S. sheep industry.
It chronicles significant historical and economic developments
in the industry from both market and policy perspectives and cites
prospects for the industry's survival. Issues related to both
sheep meat and wool production are covered.
The Demand for Food Away From Home: Full Service or Fast
This publication examines how population trends and rising incomes
will affect spending on food away from home, and estimates the
expected growth rates in spending for food at full-service and
fast food restaurants.