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Sunflower Briefs

Wednesday, March 29, 2017
filed under: Sunflower Briefs

Joe Caroline
Caroline Named NSA?Gold Award Honoree
       Joe Caroline has been named the 2017 National Sunflower Association Gold Award winner.  Caroline has worked in the sunflower industry for more than 40 years.  He began his career in the public sector as an agronomist with North Dakota State University, stationed at NDSU’s Carrington Research Extension Center.  Caroline later worked as a sunflower plant breeder with SIGCO Research, where he was involved in development of the first high-oleic sunflower sold in the United States and Argentina.  He went on to work as a product development agronomist with Dow AgroSciences, a position he held until his retirement in 2015. 
       Caroline has been an active member of the NSA since its formation in 1981.  The NSA Board of Directors selected Caroline for the Gold Award at their February meeting. He’ll receive the award at the 2017 NSA Summer Seminar, which will be held in Rapid City, S.D., on June 27-29.
 
Sclerotinia Initiative Holds Annual Meeting
       Reports presented at the National Sclerotinia Initiative meeting held in Minneapolis in late January indicate that positive progress is being made on this difficult disease. Sclerotinia affects most broadleaf crops and requires multiple genes for resistance. The greatest progress is being made with improved genetics. Resistant genes are being identified in a number of wild sunflower species. Transferring those genes to cultivated sunflower is the present task.
       The Initiative is federally funded and, in addition to sunflower, includes crops such as soybean, canola, peas, lentils and edible beans.  Researchers from 14 different states are involved in projects, and there is a great deal of collaboration among universities and USDA-ARS researchers.

Schuler Now N.D. Commerce Commissioner
Jay Schuler

       North Dakota Governor Doug Burgum in January appointed Jay Schuler to lead the North Dakota Department of Commerce, citing Schuler’s successful track record as a job creator and entrepreneur for more than 40 years. Schuler assumed his new role as commerce commissioner in late February.
      Schuler is a native of Wahpeton, N.D., and neighboring Breckenridge, Minn.  A North Dakota State University graduate in agricultural economics (minors in agronomy and genetics), he started his first company while still in college.  Schuler is a founding investor in both GIANT Sunflower Seeds, the largest sunflower confection retailer in the Upper Midwest, and Richland IFC, a dominant supplier of organic blue corn. He also is an original investor in Ag America Network, which is carried by more than 30 radio stations in North and South Dakota.  In 2012, Schuler was named by the University of North Dakota Center for Innovation as its first Holaday Entrepreneur-in-Residence.
       Schuler succeeded former state commerce commissioner Alan Anderson, who retired December 31.

 
RMA Announces Insurance Price Elections
       The 2017 crop insurance prices were announced in early March by USDA’s Risk Management Agency.  The price election for oil-type sunflower will be $18.20/cwt., with confections set at $27.20/cwt.  These levels represent an increase of $1.30 for oil and $0.50 for confections compared to the 2016 price elections. The increased price protection will allow for greater coverage of production costs, crop damage due to natural disasters, or the loss of revenue due to a decline in price.  Producers have the option of choosing Yield Protection, Revenue Protection and Revenue Protection wi
From left to right: Karl Esping, Kevin Capistran, Lance Hourigan, Art Ridl
th the Harvest Price Exclusion.  All three policies have the same price election.
 
NSA?Board Members Travel to D.C.
       National Sunflower Association farmer board members from four different states traveled to Washington, D.C., in mid-March to meet with legislators and USDA personnel on matters of importance to sunflower producers.  The team included Art Ridl of Dickinson, N.D.; Karl Esping of Lindsborg, Kan.; Kevin Capistran from Crookston, Minn., and Lance Hourigan, Lemmon, S.D. NSA Executive Director John Sandbakken accompanied the group. They visited with members of Congress about the upcoming 2018 farm bill and fiscal year 2018 appropriations.  Among other stops, the NSA group also met with
officials from the USDA APHIS/Wildlife Services to discuss blackbird depredation concerns.
 
Colorado SAC Thanks Zimbelman for Service
       The Colorado Sunflower Administrative Committee (Colorado Sunflower) recently presented past board member Leon Zimbelman, Keenesburg, with an “Outstanding Service” recognition plaque.  Zimbelman has served on the board of directors of both Colorado Sunflower and the National Sunflower Association.  He also was one of the Colorado Sunflower board’s founding members upon its establishment in 2001.
 
Colo Selected as SunOpta President/CEO
       David J. Colo has been named president and chief executive officer of SunOpta, Inc., a supplier of organic and non-GMO specialty products. He comes to the company from Diamond Foods, where he had been executive president and chief operating officer since 2013.  In his role with Diamond Foods, Colo was responsible for marketing, innovation, R&D, operations, supply chain, procurement, quality, food safety, grower services and contract manufacturing. Together with the Diamond Foods executive team, he was responsible for leading the turnaround of the company and its eventual sale for approximately $1.9 billion to Snyder’s-Lance, Inc., in March 2016.  At SunOpta, Colo replaced Rik Jacobs, who stepped down as president/CEO this past November.
 
Continue to Monitor Binned Seed Moisture
       Producers who still have some of last year’s sunflower crop stored in bins are encouraged to make sure they keep an eye on the seeds’ moisture level. The maximum recommended moisture content for stored sunflower is 9.5% through the winter months and 8% if the storage period is longer than about six months. It’s also important to check the sunflower weekly and make sure you check the sunflower, not the bin. Check by getting into the storage each time and walk, feel, smell and probe the seeds. Remember, walking around in filled bins can be dangerous, so take extra precautions.  For more storage tips, click here
 
N Calculator App Available for Apple Devices
       The N calculator — included in a single app for corn, spring wheat/durum, and sunflower — is now available for download onto iPhones and iPads.  Search the Apple store for “North Dakota Crop Nitrogen Calculator” and install.  Once installed, select the crop and follow instructions. The original NDSU circular document for each crop is also available on the app. The app is also available for Android phones in the “Google Play Store” — again, search for “ND Crop Nitrogen Calculators” and install. 
 
USDA Surveys Planting Intentions
       What is on the horizon for U.S. farmers in 2017 as they finalize plans for planting this spring? The March Agricultural Survey conducted by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS), surveyed approximately 84,000 of the nation’s farmers to determine their plans for the upcoming growing season. NASS mailed the survey questionnaire in February, asking producers to provide information about the types of crops they intend to plant in 2017, how many acres they intend to plant, and the amounts of grain and oilseed stored on their farms. Some of those producers who did not respond by the deadline were contacted for a telephone or personal interview. NASS is publishing the results in the annual Prospective Plantings report and quarterly Grain Stocks report, both scheduled for release on March 31.
 
S.D. Pest Mgmt. Guides Available 
       The South Dakota 2017 Pest Management guides are available online as free PDF downloads or as hard copies at SDSU Extension regional centers, offices and events. The guides provide recommendations for herbicides, insecticides, seed treatments and fungicides that are available in South Dakota to control weeds, insects and diseases. The guides were updated for 2017 to include new products, new product names and the corresponding changes to the labels, including application rates, rotation restrictions and additive rates.  Cost estimates are included for the herbicide products. Click here to download the guide that includes sunflower. 
 
Research Presentations Online
       Power Point presentations of all the reports given at the 2017 Sunflower Research Forum are on the National Sunflower Association website beneath the “Research” tab. For a historical look, click here to see Forum presentations dating back to 2008. Researchers from several states and Canada presented a total of 19 papers and 10 posters at this year’s Sunflower Research Forum.
 
Resource Books Available on NSA Website
       Spring planting is just around the corner; find helpful information here. Check out the Sunflower Production Resource Book for your area. The books provide guidelines and recommendations on production practices, pest identification, field selection and more.
 
Sign Up for NSA E-Publications
       Interested in a link to a digital copy of NSA’s Sunflower Highlights each week in your email?  It’s easy! Click here to sign up. You can also sign up for a digital copy of The Sunflower magazine. And for sunflower prices at various locations, click here.
 
NSA High Plains Committee iPad Winners
       Congratulations to the four lucky winners of the iPads given away at recent ag shows.  The NSA’s High Plains Committee gave away one iPad at each of four different ag shows.
       • Barry Hittle (Colorado Conservation Tillage Association)
       • John Gordon (also CCTA)
       • Mike Neff (Cover Your Acres meeting)
       • Spencer Yenni (Young Farmers and Ranchers)
         The NSA High Plains Committee thanks all those who stopped by its booth at these winter meetings.
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