Extension Ag Update
November/December 2003
Articles Research Resources Internet Links Ag Facts Education

Internet Links


Understanding USDA Corn and Soybean Production Forecasts: An Overview of Methods, Performance and Market Impacts
This publication attempts to clarify the USDA's motives, methods and procedures used to arrive at production forecasts for U.S. corn and soybean crops


StarLink: What If You Received a Notice That Your Claim Is Deficient?
This brief article provides practical information, including examples, of how a farmer might respond if he has just received notice that his previously filed, StarLink-related Corn Loss Proof of Claim is deficient. In most cases, some action is required not later than Saturday, November 15 to cure the problem identified by the Claims Administrator.


Mycotoxins Website
Through the efforts of five Midwest universities (Ohio State University, Purdue University, Iowa State University, Penn State University and University of Kentucky), grain and livestock producers now have a one-stop shopping web site. Information included are what are the types of mycotoxins, chemicals released by fungi that are toxic to animals and humans, moldy grains and mycotoxins, feeding problems associated with them, preventive practices, feed concentrations and plant diseases associated with mycotoxins, as well as Internet links for additional information and an article on where to send grain for analysis.


Farm Income and Costs
The Farm Income and Costs briefing room provides indicators of economic performance for the U.S. farm sector and major crop and livestock farm groups. Farm balance sheet estimates are used by USDA and other public and private sector clients to form a perspective about the financial health of the U.S. agricultural economy. Distributional analyses identify sub-sectors and business types that are performing well relative to past trends and to other groups and types of farms. Identification of these businesses enables analysts to more closely examine factors contributing to financial performance, such as assessment of debt-repayment difficulties of specific farm types, industry sub-sectors, and regions of the country.

The 2003 forecast net value added of $93.2 billion is up $2.4 billion from this year's initial forecast and is 25 percent higher than the revised 2002 forecast. The 2003 forecast is also eight percent above the 1993-2002 average. Net farm income--the residual after payments to stakeholders and investors--is forecast to be $46.2 billion, up 53 percent from 2002. However, average farm operator household income for 2003 is forecast at $65,795, up just seven percent from last year. Increases in crop and livestock receipts and government payments are causing the farm income component of total household income to recover from the year-ago low.


Buckwheat Production in Illinois: Analysis of Production Practices and Marketing Possibilities
An overview of growing buckwheat in Illinois and its potential markets.


Meat Regulations in Illinois
A guide of things to consider when producing meat products in Illinois.


Step-by-Step Guide To Starting a Small Business in Illinois
This guide will inform you of various legal requirements and direct you to additional resources. For more information contact the First Stop Business Information Center of Illinois or call 800-252-2923.


Grow Illinois
A searchable list of alternative Ag growers in Illinois. It is searchable by product, county or town.


Production Costs Critical To Farming Decisions
This article outlines the relevance of production costs- both operating and total (including capital costs)- in farmers’ decisions about production levels and mix, and about exit from the sector.


Multilateralism And Regionalism: Dual Strategies for Trade Reform
The article describes the U.S. strategy in the area of agricultural trade reform. The strategy contains two distinct but reinforcing elements: (1) multilateralism, in which the United States actively participates in the agricultural trade negotiations at the World Trade Organization; and (2) regionalism, in which the United States pursues regional trade agreements with like-minded trade partners.


Structure of the Global Markets for Meat
Meat trade flows among countries and world regions are determined largely by differences among countries in their resource base, their preferences for meat types and cuts, the extent and character of barriers to trade, and the industry structure. Trade growth is likely to feature greater complexity in trade patterns, with more countries engaging in trade, and with an increased tendency for individual countries to import and export meat cuts and offal from the same animal species.


North American Agricultural Market Integration and Its Impact on the Food and Fiber System
Economic change and market dynamics have fundamentally altered the structure and performance of agricultural markets in the United States, Canada, and Mexico within the last 25 years. Many factors have helped shape the current North American food and fiber system, including technological change, domestic farm policies, international trade agreements, and the economic forces of supply and demand.


Adoption of Genetically Engineered Crops in the U.S.
This data product summarizes the extent of adoption of herbicide-tolerant and insect-resistant genetically engineered crops in the United States. Three tables devoted to corn, cotton, and soybeans cover the 2002-2003 period, by state.


Integrated Pest Management: Current and Future Strategies
This report offers a comprehensive, up-to-date analysis of the issues involved in pest control. The report gives educators and policy makers a look at the changes taking place with in these programs.


Inoculation of Forage Legumes, AGR-90, Agronomy, University of Kentucky
An overview of how and when to use inoculation.


Policy Major Barrier to Adopting Sustainable Ag Techniques
Government policy ranks as one of the top challenges facing farmers who are trying to adopt alternative production systems, according to farmers surveyed in Minnesota and Wisconsin. A team led by Land Stewardship Project conducted the surveys of 1,600 sustainable farmers, farm lenders, and agricultural educators.


MOSES Releases Revised Organic Directory
The Midwest Organic and Sustainable Education Service has released the fourth edition of its Upper Midwest Organic Resource Directory. The directory includes resource groups, certification agencies, suppliers, buyers, and more. See www.mosesorganic.org or contact MOSES at info@mosesorganic.org or 715/772-3153.