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You Are Here Sunflower Magazine > Sunflower Briefs

Sunflower Magazine

Sunflower Briefs
January 2012

Crop Insurance Change for 2012

Last year, the National Sunflower Association asked the USDA Risk Management Agency (RMA) to allow optional units by the type of sunflower. In the past, sunflower producers who grew both oil and nonoil sunflower in the same unit had their production combined when determining indemnity in case of a loss. The NSA considered it unfair to combine the two crops when producers pay separate premiums and use different price elections. Each sunflower type has its specific yield history and is sold into different markets. RMA took these factors into consideration and recently announced that beginning in 2012 optional units will be allowed by type of sunflower.

2011 Yield Trials Available On NSA Website

As the 2011 sunflower yield trials come in, they are posted on the NSA website at

Current data, as well as a wealth of historical information, can be found here. Yield trials are an important way for producers to look at a hybridís performance in several locations, over several years and environments. Yield is one component of the trials. Nonoil (confection) trials are segregated from oils, and most locations include a column regarding seed size. Oil-type trials include oil content, and some hybrids are tested for hulling ability. Depending on the year, some trials may be rated for a particular disease as well as other issues such as lodging.

NSA Research Forum is January 11-12

The annual National Sunflower Research Forum is scheduled for January 11-12 at the Ramada Plaza Suites in Fargo N.D. The Forum format includes the presentation of research reports from a broad spectrum of public and private researchers from around the U.S. and Canada. Papers are grouped into diseases, insects, weeds and production.

The 2012 Forum is open to all who are interested in sunflower production. It is not restricted to researchers only. The NSA has allocated increasing amounts of funding for production research areas, from fungicide trials to doubled haploid genetics.

Sclerotinia Initiative Meets January 18-20

The 10th annual National Sclerotinia Initiative will be held January 18-20 at the Holiday Inn Select, Minneapolis/St. Paul International Airport. The Sclerotinia Initiative is a USDA-ARS-funded program dedicated to research solutions to Sclerotinia in sunflower, canola, peas and lentils, edible beans and soybeans. This multi-crop and multi-state approach has brought together a dedicated group of researchers who have made good progress over the life of the Initiative. Projects are being conducted in numerous locations, with a strong emphasis on genetic resistance.

The January meeting is open to all persons interested in the disease, including hybrid seed and crop protection companies. There is no registration fee, but registration is requested and can be completed at:

Hasnedl Elected New Chairman of CHS Board

Jerry Hasnedl, a St. Hilaire, Minn., farmer and long-time director, has been elected chairman of the board of CHS Inc., the nation's leading farmer-owned cooperative.

Hasnedl was selected during the 17-member boardís yearly reorganization meeting, which followed the cooperativeís 2011 annual meeting. He has served on the CHS board since 1995. During 2011, he was its secretary-treasurer and also chaired the board's Capital Committee.

Hasnedl helped organize the Minnesota Sunflower Research & Promotion Council in 2009 and is a current member of that council. He also is a member and past director of Northwest Grain, a locally governed CHS retail business, and serves on the board of the Cooperative Network. He raises wheat, barley, corn, soybeans, sunflower, canola and alfalfa on the family farm near St. Hilaire.

NSA Seeks Gold Award Nominations

The National Sunflower Association is accepting nominations for the NSA Gold Award. This award is presented to individuals who have contributed extraordinarily to the overall sunflower industry, either through their occupation or through the National Sunflower Association. Persons having received the award in past years can be found on the NSA website. Past winners have come from a wide array of backgrounds, including farming, industry, research, extension and politics. This is the highest award that the NSA presents to individuals.

The closing date for letters of nomination for the 2012 award is February 15, 2012. The letter should state the personís contributions to the overall industry and provide specific examples. More than one letter per nomination is desirable. Letters of nomination should be sent to: The President, National Sunflower Assn., 2401 46th Ave. S.E., Suite 206, Mandan ND 58554-4829.

Year-End Confection Export Numbers

Export of U.S. kernel is up compared to last year. Year-end numbers report kernel exports at 34,131 metric tons, as compared to 32,682 mt the previous year. Germany, although down overall from last year, retained its spot as the number one importer of kernel with 8,205 metric tons this year. The UK, Canada and Spain were the next largest kernel buyers, all increasing their totals over last year. Of note, Spainís share increased dramatically this year to 3,939 metric tons, compared to 1,102 last year. On the in-shell side of the market, numbers were down slightly at 69,167 this year compared to 76,455 last year. Spain, Turkey and Mexico (in that order) all remained the three top importers of U.S. in-shell again this year, together accounting for 63% of the total exports.

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