Some believe "big data" may be the next renaissance in agriculture. Others call it the greatest advance in agriculture since the Green Revolution during the 1940s, '50s and '60s when one of the biggest waves of research and technology spurred the growth of agricultural production around the world. Some compare big data with the biotech revolution.
July 27, 2014|
John Schlageck, Kansas Farm Bureau
Today, after the previous columns briefly describing genetic engineering and GMO traits found in agriculture, it's time to wrap this up. So IS GMO technology a Blessing or a Curse? That is up to the reader to decide based on facts and reasoning. To help let's list the potential benefits followed by the potential pitfalls as objectively as possible.
There have been several phone calls over the past few weeks about Palmer amaranth (Palmer pigweed). Several producers and local agronomists are noticing that it is not being controlled effectively in places with Glyphosate. I was e-mailed a news release this week that will give some information about what is being observed in the state, especially in Central Kansas at this time. As always, if you have any questions or concerns, you can get a hold of me by phone, email or stopping in the Extension office.
"It is difficult to make decisions or even know where to start after the death of someone close to you." Speaker D. Elizabeth Kiss, PH.D, KSU told an audience of 30 at the workshop for "Women on the Farm".
Wheat harvest has mostly wrapped up and temperatures have increased, so take a few days and cool off at Kansas Wheat's Annual Meeting and High Plains Journal's Wheat U on Aug. 4 and 5 in Wichita. Wheat board meetings will be held on Monday, August 4, beginning at 11 a.m., at the Sedgwick County Extension Office and will include separate and joint meetings of the Kansas Wheat Commission and the Kansas Association of Wheat Growers. The Commission meeting is open for interested parties to attend.
Several Kansas State University researchers were essential in helping scientists assemble a draft of a genetic blueprint of bread wheat, also known as common wheat. The food plant is grown on more than 531 million acres around the world and produces nearly 700 million tons of food each year.
I have been told all of my life, "Well, this year is unusual" when it comes to weather. In Kansas, I think that adage holds true every year. For 2014, we had one of the driest starts in history followed by one of the wettest Junes in history. The temperatures have been cooler than normal for the most part, but then we have sudden changes where the daily high will be 20 degrees higher or lower than the previous day. When the weather is so up and down, there might be a few problems in your garden. One of the ...
Adrian J. Polansky, State Executive Director of the Kansas Farm Service Agency (FSA), announced today that emergency haying and grazing of Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) acreage has been approved for 44 counties in Kansas effective Wednesday, July 16.
Today's column focuses on herbicide resistant GMO technology and next week the potential up- and down- sides of GMOs. While this focuses on herbicide resistant traits produced through genetic engineering, it should be pointed out many herbicide resistant traits have been obtained through conventional breeding techniques. Let's discuss the trait almost everyone is familiar with – Roundup Ready ® technology.
Television, newspapers, magazines and the web are filled with images of starving children – skeleton-like figures crouched like dogs on their haunches while their mothers wail in anguish. Sometimes these pictures from such far-away places as Sudan, Ethiopia or Somalia also include children eating bread, bowls of rice and other staples that may have come from food produced on the fertile land of Kansas farmers and their counterparts across the United States.
July 06, 2014|
John Schlageck, Kansas Farm Bureau
Last week's column described conventional breeding techniques for the production of varieties and hybrids. Today's column delves into genetic engineering. Before tackling that it's important to remember that much of today's crop and livestock in large part remain tied entirely or partially to these "conventional" techniques. And no matter how sophisticated genetic manipulation becomes, we still take the materials into the field.
It's Fair time again in Barton County! The youth from all of our communities have been working hard on their various projects, and will be displaying them for the community to see. Whether you enjoy photography, artwork, or livestock, there is something for everyone at the fair.
Have you ever heard about the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) crop acreage, production or stocks reports and wondered, "How does USDA come up with these crop estimates?" "Why do they impact prices so much?" Or, "why can't USDA get it right?"
"Change is a hard thing to accept, but for ranchers in Kansas things are always changing and successful ranchers are always looking ahead - adapting their management to meet that change," said Tim Christian state coordinator for the Kansas Grazing Lands Coalition (KGLC). "Registration is open for the 2014 KGLC range schools and we encourage interested folks to get their names on the list to attend one of two schools."
Stripe rust has been found in several fields of wheat in south central Kansas, including Barton County. At the time it was found, it was still at low levels and in trace amounts. With the cool wet weather we have been experiencing, it is something that producers should be on the watch for, and scouting their fields to identify and monitor.
Picture transitioning from a rural setting that includes woodlands, wildlife habitat and farms, to urban areas that consist of concrete, parking lots, streets and buildings. Rural land in a more natural state has the ability to soak up water in the soil more efficiently than urban areas with impervious surfaces that can lead to more runoff.
The last several columns provided general background on the rapidly expanding organic foods market. Today's column briefly outlines conventionally produced foods to highlight the differences between the two. Perhaps the first question to deal with is "Are conventionally produced foods inorganic?"
Lately, I have been getting many calls with people concerned with small mounds in their turf, making it difficult to mow, work or play in their yard. Most of the time, the issue is earthworms that are very active at this time of year. In my research, I came across this short piece of information on nightcrawlers, from the K-State Entomology department. I thought I would share this to give more infomation about these beneficial but sometimes annoying worms.
This week wraps up the discussion of "organic" foods before comparing them to "conventionally" produced foods. Last week's column briefly described what organic means in general terms. When you purchase a product "Certified Organic" what does that really mean?