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Oregon Wheat specific Press Releases can be found here.



2021 News & Updates!

U.S. Government Confirms Grains Are Important to Good Nutrition

The U.S. Grain Chain, a farm to fork coalition of stakeholders in the grain industry chaired by the American Bakers Association (ABA), is celebrating the recommendation published Dec. 29, 2020, in the 2020-2025 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGAs) to “consume half of your grains from whole grain sources” and the remainder from enriched grains. A foundational piece of the DGAs, the guidelines recognize whole grains are “one of the three food groups that are fundamental constituents of a healthy dietary pattern.”

Read the article



State is now accepting applications for two vacant State Board of Agriculture positions

Governor Brown is accepting applications to fill partial terms for two producer positions on the State Board of Agriculture.

Applications must be submitted by close of business on January 20, 2021. Applicants must be actively engaged in the production of agricultural commodities. No action is needed for agricultural producers who have applied within the last two years; applications on file will be considered.



Finalizing Quality Loss Adjustment in WHIP+

NAWG Applauds USDA for Finalizing Quality Loss Adjustment in WHIP+

U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA)’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) has announced that it has finalized quality loss coverage in its Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+). National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) President and Cass City, MI wheat farmer Dave Milligan made the following statement in response: “NAWG welcomes the news from USDA’s Farm Service Agency that it has finalized quality loss coverage in WHIP+.

This new Quality Loss Adjustment (QLA) is intended to help growers who suffered crop quality losses due to extreme weather conditions in 2018 and 2019. Many wheat farmers in the northern Plains and across to the northwest experienced significant falling numbers problems as a result of excessive moisture at harvest time.

“Congress included language and funding for WHIP+ to be expanded to include quality losses as part of the FY 2020 funding bill, with additional funding being added as part of the FY 2021 omnibus appropriations bill passed last month. From the onset of the disaster conditions and throughout 2020, NAWG worked with its state associations and other national stakeholders in engaging FSA officials by demonstrating the quality losses that were experienced and exploring options for WHIP+ quality loss implementation.

“The news culminates important work done to get needed support to impacted producers. NAWG is diving into the details of the program and looks forward to working with FSA and our producers during the sign-up period.”

More information on the Quality Loss Adjustment program is available on the website: www.farmers.gov/quality-loss.




Commentary: Keep momentum going on trade for wheat

As we quickly transition into the new Biden Administration, read NAWG's opinion piece on how it can build upon the trade successes, as they relate to wheat, achieved by the Trump Administration.

NAWG stresses the importance of coalition-building in pursuing solutions to trade disputes and to work towards restoring a functional appeals system at the World Trade Organization (WTO).

View PDF Here.




Newly Released BMP's Publication

Best Management Practices for Managing Herbicide Resistance, can be found here.




FY 2021 Omnibus and COVID-19 Relief Package Signed

On December 21, 2020, the U.S. House of Representatives and U.S. Senate passed H.R. 133, the Consolidated

Appropriations Act of 2021, sending it to the President’s desk for his signature. The legislation includes all 12 fiscal year 2021 appropriations bills, $900 billion in coronavirus relief, and authorizations.

The President’s signature on the extensive stimulus package and government funding bill agreed to by Congress included several elements for agricultural supports. Among those are an extension to a third round for Coronavirus Food Assistance Program Payments. Included in the COVID-19 relief is an additional $13 billion for the agriculture industry, including $11.1875 billion to aid agricultural producers.

Other highlights:

• Supplemental CFAP payments of $20 per eligible acre for the 2020 crop year to producers of price trigger crops who meet a defined market trigger.

• Secretary of Agriculture may extend the term of marketing assistance loans to 12 months.

• Provides for additional Paycheck Protection Program (PPP) assistance and provides clarification that deductions are allowed for otherwise deductible expenses paid with proceeds of a PPP loan that is forgiven. Includes a provision establishing a specific loan calculation for the first round of PPP loans for farmers and ranchers who operate as a sole proprietor, independent contractor, self-employed individual, who report income and expenses on a Schedule F – these entities may utilize their gross income in 2019 as reported on a Schedule F – lenders may recalculate loans that have been previously approved to these entities if they would result in a larger loan. This applies to PPP loans before, on, or after the date of enactment, except for loans that have already been forgiven.

• FY 2021 Agriculture Appropriations also include several OWGL and NAWG priorities. Report language is included directing that no less than FY 2020 levels be spent on several ARS activities including resilient dryland farming.

OWGL appreciates Congress including the Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) of 2020, which will provide critical infrastructure improvements to maintain the flow of grain throughout the PNW.

Read the NAWG press release.




2020 News & Updates

Congratulations to Erin Heideman

Congratulations to Erin Heideman, the Oregon Wheat Growers League, Morrow County President, on her appointment to the DEQ Rulemaking Advisory Committee (RAC) on Greenhouse Gas Emissions/Cap and Reduce Program. DEQ made two important additions to the RAC Thursday to provide representation for industries most affected by this rulemaking: adding a dedicated, experienced, and well-rounded agricultural-centered individual with Erin Heideman as our working lands/production representative and adding a well-known and respected face, Jana Jarvis from the Oregon Truckers Association, to provide representation for freight and trucking.

During DEQ town halls prior to the formation of the committee, OWGL members repeatedly reinforced the need to include working lands and production agriculture as a dedicated voice on the committee. We are pleased Erin will have the opportunity to serve in this capacity. Having a seat at the table to discuss the impacts of rulemaking on ag producers and rural communities is critical. The work of the committee includes making recommendations on program and policy options; Reviewing, evaluating, and suggesting draft rule language; and Evaluating the fiscal, environmental, and public health implications of draft rules.


View here: https://www.oregon.gov/deq/ghgp/Pages/capandreduce.aspx.

Congratulations- and thank you- to Erin for stepping up to serve on the RAC!




ODA Issues New Chlorpyrifos Rules

Oregon Department of Agriculture Issues New Chlorpyrifos Rules

ODA released their final rules for chlorpyrifos use in Oregon this week. The agency received over 1000 comments on the draft with the vast majority from the environmental and farmworker community asking them to go even further and supporting an immediate prohibition. The new rules significantly limit chlorpyrifos' uses immediately and phases out nearly all use by December 31, 2023 with few allowances in seed treatments and granular use.



Congressional Passage of GSRA

The House of Representatives passed the United States Grain Standards Reauthorization Act (GSRA) of 2020, S. 4054. OWGL applauds both the House and Senate for their bipartisan work to move the bill forward and reauthorize the GSA through September 30, 2025. OWGL in collaboration with our national organizations of NAWG and U.S. Wheat Associates have worked collaboratively over the last year and a half on this key issue of reauthorization, given the critical importance of the United States’ weighing and inspection system to our competitiveness in the world market.

Read more here, https://bit.ly/39CODd0




Enhanced Coverage with RMA

The Enhanced Coverage Option (ECO) provides area-based coverage for a portion of the deductible of your underlying policy in a manner similar to the Supplemental Coverage Option (SCO). It uses the same expected and final area yields, projected and harvest prices and payment factors as SCO but covers a band from 86 percent (where SCO coverage ends) up to 90 or 95 percent of expected crop value.

ECO follows the coverage of your underlying policy. The amount of ECO coverage depends on the crop value, which is based on the liability and coverage level for your underlying policy. ECO will first be available for the 2021 crop year nationwide for 31 crops (Wheat included!) with a contract change date of November 30, 2020, or later.

Read more, https://bit.ly/2Vtk3dy




CRP Signup Periods

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced the signup periods for the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) and the CRP Grasslands in 2021. Signup for general CRP will be open from Jan. 4, 2021, to Feb. 12, 2021, and signup for CRP Grasslands runs from March 15, 2021 to April 23, 2021.

The competitive programs both provide annual rental payments for land devoted to conservation purposes. According to USDA data, after a CRP signup last year of about 3.4 million acres, nearly 22 million acres are enrolled in the program nationwide. The 2018 farm bill increases the cap to 27 million acres by 2023.

For more information on CRP, visit fsa.usda.gov or contact your local FSA county office.




USW Submits Comments to USTR

U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) submitted comments to the Office of the United States Trade Representative (USTR) for the annual National Trade Estimates (NTE) report.

The NTE report allows U.S. industry organizations to highlight and comment on trade barriers impacting their trade opportunities to the U.S. government. USW highlighted several key U.S. wheat markets where there are many barriers in market access, sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) issues, export subsidies and domestic support. Two of these barriers are highlighted below.

India

India maintains a trade distorting market price support system that encourages domestic wheat production. This leads to distortion in the international market due to domestic crop size and price. When stocks are too large, India has a history of applying export subsidies to move these excess wheat supplies out of the country. If they were to comply with World Trade Organization (WTO) rules and eliminate these subsidies it would create a more level playing field for U.S. wheat exports and increase U.S. wheat annual value of production by an estimated $516 million per year by 2028/29, according to a study by a Texas A&M University economist.

China

China has long been featured in USW NTE submissions with its violations of domestic support and TRQ policies. This year, both of those sections received substantial updates as China works toward compliance in the WTO case rulings and in implementing the Phase One agreement. When China joined the WTO, it agreed to an annual 9.64 million metric ton (MMT) tariff rate quota (TRQ) with a one percent duty but have always manipulated its administration to prevent proper use. USW is encouraged by the recent changes that have promoted extensive use of the TRQ this year but remains vigilant in monitoring the TRQ administration to ensure full compliance with the WTO ruling. That TRQ administration, coupled with real domestic support reforms, are key to unlocking the long-term potential of China’s wheat market for U.S. farmers and to providing consistent access to U.S. supplies for Chinese millers.

For more details and to read about trade barriers in other countries, USW comments to the USTR can be found at, https://bit.ly/2UhtgVv

USTR will use these comments to develop its annual NTE report to be released in early 2021.




Wheat Remains Vital for U.S. Food Aid

Major organizations supporting the U.S. commitment to international food aid confirmed that U.S. wheat remains their most donated crop for monetization and feeding assistance.

Representatives from World Food Program (WFP) USA, the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID) and the International food Assistance Division of USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service provided that information at a meeting of the U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) Food Aid Working Group Nov. 10.

USAID’s Bureau of Humanitarian Assistance (BHA) has procured 697,280 metric tons of U.S. wheat, including a small amount of flour, in fiscal year 2020. That represents nearly 47 percent of all commodities purchased by BHA and makes wheat the largest commodity used in emergency and non-emergency food assistance. Of note, more than 58 percent was in-kind soft white wheat destined for Yemen.

Read more at https://bit.ly/2IzepDw




AG BILL

AG BILL WITH TENS OF MILLIONS OF DOLLARS IN KEY INVESTMENTS, POLICY GUIDANCE FOR WIDE VARIETY OF OREGON AGRICULTURE PRIORITIES

The draft Senate Agriculture Appropriations Bill released today includes continuation of critical Resilient Dryland Farming Initiative funding, resources for a soil carbon health center and proposed expansion of broadband resources. “We thank Senators Merkley and Wyden for their advocacy on programs that will expand agricultural practices benefitting the economics of wheat farming and the environment.”

“A new Soil Carbon Research Center will provide Oregon wheat growers with valuable research to recognize and expand agricultural practices scientifically proven as a benefit to the economics of wheat farming and the environment," said Amanda Hoey, CEO, Oregon Wheat Growers League. "It will assure data specific to the regional differences in Oregon and will ultimately lead to increased profitability and crop yield—good for our agricultural economy, our environmental stewardship, and our rural economies. We appreciate the work to include this important funding for Oregon agriculture.”

View the draft highlights ➡️ https://bit.ly/32zasWq
Read Senator Jeff Merkley’s release ➡️ https://bit.ly/3liGJsc




Dams & Salmon

OWGL joined two dozen other region- and state-wide organizations this week in sending letters to the governors and governors-elect of Washington, Oregon, Idaho and Montana, identifying principles that should be adopted to guide the development of a region-wide salmon recovery plan.

The letters request that solutions must consider warming, acidifying oceans; be holistic in nature; assess social costs of carbon; weigh likely socioeconomic and health impacts on under-represented and vulnerable communities; not add to the risk of wildfires and other climate-driven disasters; recognize the Congressionally-authorized multiple purposes of our river systems; and undergo non-partisan and rigorous scientific testing.

Read the full letter here.




USW Soft White Report Online!

2020 Soft White Wheat Crop Yields Excellent Performance Characteristics!

The Pacific Northwest (PNW) experienced excellent growing conditions in 2020 resulting in a soft white (SW) and white club (WC) crop with very good quality and yields. The crop had lower protein and moisture with consistently high grade factors. Overall quality is characterized by very weak to medium gluten strength with excellent potential to produce SW and SW blended flour products. Average test weights for SW and WC are greater than in 2019 composites with good falling number and kernel characteristics. Flour characteristics align with protein contents and show good color and FN values with slightly lower flour yield than the 5-year average. Farinograph water absorptions are desirably low for both SW and WC, with weak to medium gluten characteristics for SW and very weak gluten for WC. For finished products, low protein composites produced good sponge cake total scores and cookie diameters. Higher protein composites showed good total scores for Chinese southern-style steamed breads.

Read more about the crop here: http://bit.ly/USW-SWW2020




How would you spend $2 Billion in Transportation $

How Would you spend $2 Billion in Transportation Dollars?

The Oregon Transportation Commission seeks your input as it continues working through how to spend more than $2 billion in the Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP).

The Commission is considering the tradeoffs between various ways of dividing limited money between different parts of the transportation system. There are five options that will help advance Oregon’s transportation goals and now is your chance to inform the Commission on which one you prefer before it selects the final one in December.

Visit the online open house!

To learn more about the options under consideration and weigh in on which one you think best meets Oregon’s transportation needs, visit the STIP online open house before it closes on November 16.

Learn More






Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage

Enrollment Begins for Agriculture Risk Coverage and Price Loss Coverage Programs for 2021

Agricultural producers can now make elections and enroll in the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs for the 2021 crop year.

Enrollment for the 2021 crop year closes March 15, 2021.Covered commodities include barley, canola, large and small chickpeas, corn, crambe, flaxseed, grain sorghum, lentils, mustard seed, oats, peanuts, dry peas, rapeseed, long grain rice, medium and short grain rice, safflower seed, seed cotton, sesame, soybeans, sunflower seed and wheat.

Producers can elect coverage and enroll in crop-by-crop ARC-County or PLC, or ARC-Individual for the entire farm, for the 2021 crop year. Although election changes for 2021 are optional, enrollment (signed contract) is required for each year of the program. If a producer has a multi-year contract on the farm and makes an election change for 2021, it will be necessary to sign a new contract. If an election is not submitted by the deadline of March 15, 2021, the election defaults to the current election for crops on the farm from the prior crop year.

Learn More




USW Crop Quality Report

U.S. Wheat Associates announced the publication of the 2020 Crop Quality Report. The report is now available online! With essential, objective information to help buyers get the wheat they need at the best value possible. In addition to the Crop Quality Report, sharing regional quality reports from partners and additional U.S. crop quality resources.

Please find these reports (and previous years) linked directly on the USW website.


Celebrating our Farm Families

Padget Ranches sits on the arid Columbia Plateau above the John Day River in Oregon, where Darren Padget’s family has farmed since 1910. Today, Darren farms with his wife Brenda and their son Logan, as well as his dad Dale. Their dryland wheat and summer fallow rotation currently produces registered and certified seed on 3,400 acres annually.

Learn more about this U.S. wheat farm family at http://bit.ly/ORfarmfamily


Philippines Government Extends Anti-Dumping Duties

The Tariff Commission of the Republic of the Philippines has extended anti-dumping duties on imports of wheat flour originating and exported from the Republic of Turkey until 2023. The commission’s ruling, announced September 9, 2020, extended anti-dumping duties that were first imposed in 2014 after PAFMIL, the Philippine Association of Flour Millers, Inc., proved that Turkish flour imports threatened to cause material injury to the domestic milling industry. The decision marks the culmination of a decade-long effort by the Philippine flour industry to deter Turkey’s unfair trade practices and secure a fair and competitive market for wheat and flour trade.

READ MORE


Censky Statements on No MFP

Deputy Agriculture Secretary Steve Censky says USDA sees no need to do another round of Market Facilitation Program payments on top of the additional coronavirus relief that producers will be collecting this fall.

The MFP was created in 2018 and repeated in 2019 to compensate farmers for losses due to China’s retaliatory tariffs and other trade barriers. “We have our exports that have been growing, and we expect to see those continue to grow, and we see no need” for more MFP payments, Censky told Agri-Pulse at the Kansas City forum.


READ MORE


Top Ag Commodities Announced

Agriculture remains vital to Oregon’s economy. The state is home to more than 37,200 farms and ranches and with the commercial fishing industry, the state produces more than 220 commodities, generating about $5 billion in annual farm gate sales and services a year.
OWGL is proud to advocate for all of Oregon’s wheat producers.
According to the latest estimated data, Oregon wheat provided an estimated value of production of approximately $283 million in 2019.

TOP TEN COMMODITIES

1 Greenhouse & nursery $955,166,000

2 Hay $674,280,000

3 Cattle & calves $625,158,000

4 Milk $552,096,000

5 Grass seed $517,406,000

6 Wheat $282,948,000

7 Grapes for wine $237,784,000

8 Potatoes $198,889,000

9 Blueberries $134,254,000

10 Pears $108,774,000



For additional statistics on livestock, crop production, commercial fish landings, agricultural exports, and more, please see the Oregon Agricultural Statistics brochure in English here.


Top 20 Commodity Print Out



Decision to Include All Wheat Classes in CFAP 2

OWGL Welcomes USDA’s Decision to Include All Wheat Classes of Wheat in CFAP 2

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced a second round of coronavirus relief payments which extends eligibility to additional classes of wheat. The new $14 billion Coronavirus Food Assistance Program 2 (CFAP 2) package covers producers of all classes of wheat. It assures support for all Oregon Wheat producers affected by price declines, market disruptions and associated costs because of COVID-19.

“The Oregon Wheat Growers League thanks Secretary Perdue and USDA for the inclusion of all wheat classes in CFAP 2 to help mitigate the economic impact of COVID-19 on wheat prices.” stated OWGL president Clint Carlson. The Oregon Wheat Growers League encourages qualifying producers to work with USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) on their application. FSA will accept CFAP 2 applications from September 21 through December 11, 2020.

Producers will be able to apply online (https://www.farmers.gov/cfap) or work directly with their local FSA office. To complete the CFAP 2 application, producers will need to reference their sales, inventory, and other records.

The expansion of CFAP 2 to include all classes of wheat recognizes the impacts of market disruptions to all wheat producers. NAWG President and Cass City, MI, wheat grower Dave Milligan stated that “This relief comes at a much-needed time when producers are being hit with depressed prices resulting in part from the effects of COVID-19. Futures prices have dropped more than 12% since beginning of 2020 until early August.” NAWG was a key advocate for the program expansion, meeting with senior USDA officials throughout the summer. Clint Carlson stated that “The partnership with NAWG and the support of our congressional members has been critical to achieving this support.” Earlier this month, letters signed by Senator Wyden, Senator Merkley, and Representative Walden, along with 19 other US Senators and 25 other House members identified the need for this program expansion to address the deteriorating economic conditions for wheat producers.

The effectiveness of OWGL, NAWG and other state associations in providing feedback and expressing the need for program support helped ensure CFAP 2 would be open to wheat producers. Dave Milligan stated: “NAWG applauds USDA’s work on CFAP and will continue to work with the Agency throughout the COVID-19 pandemic to ensure all wheat farmers in need of support have access to it.” OWGL appreciates USDA’s responsiveness and will provide further information for our members to access resources. Producers can visit https://www.farmers.gov/cfap for further details.

NAWG release, here.




Stripe Rust & Increases by Fungicide Application

Yield Losses by Stripe Rust & Increases by Fungicide Application on Winter & Spring Wheat Varieties in 2020

Researchers from the USDA-ARS Wheat Health, Genetics, and Quality Research Unit in Pullman, Washington examined 23 spring and winter wheat varieties grown in the Pacific Northwest to determine yield losses caused by stripe rust and their responses to fungicide application for control of stripe rust. For winter wheat, the yield losses of the commercially grown varieties ranged from 1.2 to 52.4 bushels per acre. Fungicide applications increased yield from 0.7% to 55.4%. For spring wheat, the yield losses of the commercially grown varieties ranged from -1.7 to 62.8 bushels per acre. Fungicide applications increased yield from -1.9% to 136.5%.

The range for the 23 varieties include rating of 0 (no significant yield loss and fungicide is not needed), rating of 1 (yield loss close to significance and fungicide may or may not needed), and rating of 2 or higher (yield loss significant and fungicide is needed).

See more information and variety susceptibility ratings here.

The Oregon Wheat Commission provides financial support to stripe rust research at ARS-Pullman to improve the understanding of stripe rust disease epidemiology and the pathogen population; improve stripe rust resistance in wheat varieties; and improve the integrated management of stripe rust.



2019 Crop Year Farm Bill Program Payments

USDA Farm Service Agency (FSA) will soon be making Farm Bill program payments through ARC and PLC. The PLC payment rate will be $0.92 per bushel. Additionally, FSA has recently posted a spreadsheet showing 2019 ARC-County benchmark yields and revenue, as well as payment rates, as of October 9, 2020. That spreadsheet, which is broken down by commodity, state, and county, can be found here.



"Cap and Reduce"

The Department of Environmental Quality plans to hold three webinars next month on cap and trade, or “cap and reduce” as they call it now. This is the only opportunity we are aware of that our members & the public will have to comment on the program’s design and priorities before they begin formal rulemaking.

See summary provided by Dalton Advocacy PDF.

We encourage that you submit comments by October 21.

Apply for the RAC, submit statement of interest by October 19.

Email: CapandReduce@deq.state.or.us

More info HERE.

Summary on Cap and Reduce - Dalton Advocacy

Suggested Talking Points

Talking Points

Reward Proactive Investments. Farmers and ranchers who have made investments in new equipment in order to emit less carbon should be rewarded for being proactive in the innovations they’ve adopted, not punished because they acted before a mandate.

Wheat Markets. Wheat farmers operate on thin profit margins. Increases to farm inputs, coupled with higher transportation costs to ship wheat to markets will put family wheat farms out of business. The agency should do everything possible to mitigate impacts to consumers/ farm families, especially now as businesses struggle financially. Protect our wheat markets!

DEQ must protect low-income and/ or rural residents. Rural Oregonians often drive longer distances for critical services—groceries, health care, fuel, etc.—and will bear a greater portion of the cost of a carbon reduction program. DEQ must not to design a program that takes money from rural families simply to reallocate it to urban areas of the state. That’s not fair.

Farmers and foresters must have a seat at the table. The structure of the Rules Advisory Committee lacks voices from production agriculture and commercial timber. As we’ve seen in other jurisdictions, it’s impossible to create a workable “working lands” program without those engaged in production agriculture. Please add a production ag representative to the Committee.


Notes: Use YOUR personal stories! How will increased cost to gas/electricity/etc. impact your operation?



FSA Adjustments, Final Rule

The Farm Service Agency (FSA) published a final rule making adjustments to the actively engaged and payment limitation rules for farm program participation, in part as implementation of the 2018 Farm Bill.

A few key revisions include:

  • The definition of “family member” for purposes of farm program eligibility is expanded to include first cousin, niece, and nephew
  • Changes to qualification requirements based on management contributions
  • Loan Deficiency Payments and Marketing Loan Gains are removed from the combined $125,000 payment limitation.
  • Enables the Secretary to waive the $900,000 Adjusted Gross Income limitation of certain FSA and NRCS conservation contracts for environmentally sensitive land of special significance.


Pete Parsons' Seasonal Climate Forecast

Meteorologist Pete Parsons' Seasonal Climate Forecast September-November prediction is now available here PDF.

Highlights:

  • Predicting an early start to autumn with a marked transition to relatively cool and possibly damp conditions in September.
  • La Niña watch. Regardless, the fall/winter weather will be in stark contrast to the last two years with were El Niño years


Deadline Extension for CRP Soil Health and Income Protection Program (SHIPP) Pilot

On August 21, 2020, the USDA has announced that it will extend the deadline to enroll cropland in CRP through SHIPP from August 21, 2020, to November 20, 2020. All offers must be submitted no later than COB November 20, 2020.



USDA to Distribute $1.68B in CRP Payments

As reported in Agri-Pulse, “Landowners and producers enrolled in 21.9 million acres of the Conservation Reserve Program should begin receiving $1.68 billion in annual rental payments, the Department of Agriculture said Thursday.”



White House Executive Order on Modernizing America’s Water Resource Management and Water Infrastructure

On October 13, 2020, the President issued a new executive order on modernizing America’s water resource management and water infrastructure. The purpose of the order is to ensure effective management of our natural resources as well as to encourage modernization of water infrastructure so the needs of current and future generations can be met. The order will also ensure that agencies and departments collaborate more effectively on overlapping or joint issues. To view the full executive order, click here.




OR-OSHA Seeks to Increase Maximum Penalties

OR-OSHA Seeks to Increase Maximum Penalties & Lessen the Agency’s Burden of Proof When Demonstrating Employer-Fault

Generally, Oregon law says that for an employer to be liable for a serious violation, Oregon OSHA must prove that the employer knew, or with the exercise or reasonable diligence could have known, of the violation. It is a fault-based system. OR-OSHA proposes defining “reasonable diligence” to change our fair and reasonable fault-based system to a strict liability system that makes it easier for OR-OSHA to win a contested case. To be clear, this rule change is about agency convenience in contested cases, not employee safety.

Additionally, through a separate rulemaking, the agency seeks to grant Oregon OSHA’s Administrator unfettered discretion to impose maximum penalties on businesses up to $135,382. The agency has no persuasive explanation for this rule change. As explained in more detail below, these rules will have drastic impacts on Oregon’s family farms, and we must OPPOSE these changes to OR-OSHA’s authority and burdens under the law: 1. The proposed rule redefines “reasonable diligence” in a way that eliminates OR-OSHA’s obligations to prove that a violation was something a reasonable employer was capable of knowing about: The proposed rule states: For purposes of ORS 654.086(2), a standard of care where the employer identifies and anticipates hazards and violations that could occur in the workplace and then takes measures through the use of devices, safeguards, rules, procedures, or other methods that eliminate or safely control such hazards or prevent such violations.

Oregon OSHA’s Proposed Increase of Certain Minimum and Maximum Penalties for Alleged Violations

Without strong opposition, OR-OSHA will adopt these rule changes at the end of October! Oregon’s businesses are already under immense pressure from OR-OSHA and are struggling to stay afloat during COVID-19. Without your immediate action, employers could be subject to strict liability and sweeping fines!

There will be a final opportunity for in-person testimony on October 28, 2020 10:00 AM PDT. Register for the Public Hearing on Employer Responsibilities on October 28, 2020 10:00 AM PDT at: https://attendee.gotowebinar.com/register/4520236747923177484

OR-OSHA Proposed Rulemakings



Grower Organizations make Difficult Decision

Grower Organizations make Difficult Decision to Cancel 2020 Convention

Due to the uncertain timeframes of current group restrictions and financial implications of delaying a decision, the small grain grower associations of Idaho, Oregon and Washington regret to announce the cancellation of the 2020 Tri-State Grain Growers Convention. The event was originally scheduled for December 1-4, 2020 at the Coeur d’Alene Resort.

The Tri-State Grain Growers Convention has become a premier annual event in the Pacific Northwest for small grain producers and industry partners. It attracts nearly 450 people from Idaho, Oregon and Washington. At the event, the grower associations hold their annual business meetings to direct their policy work and install new leadership. Jointly, the three states hear from nationally elected officials, high caliber keynote speakers, participate in educational breakouts, collaborate with industry partners, and more.

We want to express our sincere appreciation to the grower members, sponsors and exhibitors for your continued during these uncertain times. State leadership and boards will continue their work on behalf of the association members as we head in to critical legislative sessions.

The 2021 Tri-State Grain Growers Convention is slated for November 30-December 3, 2021 at the Davenport Grand Hotel in Spokane, WA. Idaho Grain Producers Association, Oregon Wheat Growers League and Washington Association of Wheat Growers hope to see you there!


Oregon will hold the annual Oregon Wheat Growers meeting on December 1, 2020. More details will be announved soon.


ODA FILES TWO PROPOSED PERMANENT RULES

Oregon Department of Agriculture (ODA) filed two Proposed Permanent Rules with the Oregon Secretary of State's (SOS) Office and will begin accepting comments on the following proposals starting Aug. 3, 2020 and ending October 22, 2020.

  1. A proposed rule providing limitations on pesticide products containing the insecticide, chlorpyrifos, OAR-603-057-0545.
  2. A proposed rule to amend a currently existing rule to provide consistency between statute and rule, when listing a pesticide as restricted use, OAR 603-057-0205.

When developing these rules, the Department worked extensively with stakeholders in a Chlorpyrifos Workgroup for nine months.

Additional information regarding the proposed rules and workgroup efforts may be found here.

Written comments can be emailed to chlorpyrifos-comments@oda.state.or.us; or mailed to,

Amy Bingham
2020 Rulemaking Comment
Directors Office
Oregon Department of Agriculture
635 Capitol St NE
Salem, OR 97301-2532



Making it Official: USMCA In Force

The US Mexico Canada Agreement officially entered into force on July 1, 2020. This final step means that all required legislative and regulatory changes needed to implement the agreement have been put into place or are scheduled to take effect.

The Oregon Wheat Growers’ League celebrates this critical trade agreement taking effect. “The majority of Oregon wheat is exported, so stability in our overseas markets is essential for Oregon wheat producers” stated OWGL President Clint Carlson.

“USMCA provides that certainty and market stability, benefiting wheat producers.”

One of the key wheat provisions in USMCA is continued tariff free access for US wheat exports to Mexico. While Mexico is not a top market currently for the Pacific Northwest, it is the nation's largest wheat importer. In the marketing year 2019/20, which ended May 31, 2020, Mexico purchased more than 3.87 million metric tons (MMT) of U.S. wheat valued at $881 million. Its ability to continue to source U.S. wheat into the future strengthens the entire market, to the benefit of Oregon producers as well. A second key provision in USMCA is improved grading treatment for US wheat shipped to Canada. The new rules, allowing U.S. grown wheat brought across the border to Canadian grain elevators to be graded on a level playing field, are a significant step in furthering equal trade between the countries’ wheat growers. Other measures that benefit the wheat industry include the Agreement’s language around agricultural biotechnology which supports 21st Century innovations in agriculture and new language to strengthen disciplines for science-based SPS measures.

OWGL celebrates USMCA’s entry to force and appreciates the hard work of Congress and the Administration for helping to put this trade deal into effect.



natural disaster designation

Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue designated two Oregon counties as primary natural disaster areas. Producers in Crook and Umatilla counties who suffered losses due to recent drought, may be eligible for U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Farm Service Agency (FSA) emergency loans.

The deadline to apply for these emergency loans is Feb. 11, 2021.



NAWG & USW News Release

Wheat Industry Applauds Bipartisanship Around the Grain Standards Reauthorization Act

The U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture held a business meeting to markup the United States Grain Standards Reauthorization Act (GSA) of 2020. The National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) and U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) applaud the Committee for their bipartisan work to move the bill forward and reauthorize the GSA through September 30, 2025.

“Thanks in part to the advantage and premium international buyers place on the grain inspection system, U.S. wheat continues to maintain its competitiveness in the international market. Given the current uncertainty in trade agreements and many of the bearish factors working against U.S. wheat exports, it is critical we maintain one of our key advantages,” said National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) President and Cass City, Mich., farmer Dave Milligan. “To avoid any disruption in inspection services and keep the flow of grain moving NAWG encourages Congress to act quickly to reauthorize the Grain Standards Act before expiration in September.”

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Check out the U.S. Wheat Associates "Dependable People" spotlight.

Member: Oregon Wheat Commission
USW Member since 1980

Location: Portland, Oregon

Classes of wheat grown: Soft White (SW), Hard Red Spring (HRS), Hard Red Winter (HRW)

USW Leadership: William L. Hulse, 1981/82 Chairman; Stan Timmermann, 1993/94 Chairman; Darren Padget, incoming 2020/2021 Chairman

The Oregon Wheat Commission works to enhance the profitability of Oregon wheat growers by communicating, educating, assuring markets and conducting and stimulating research. Oregon grows primarily soft white (SW) wheat in the vast expanses of Eastern Oregon, and in the lush Willamette River Valley.


SPOTLIGHT


USDA Expands Market for U.S. Wheat

Adds Idaho, Oregon, and Washington to List of States that Can Export Wheat to Kenya!

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue today announced that, effective immediately, U.S. wheat may now be shipped to Kenya regardless of state of origin or port of export. This important step will allow U.S. wheat from Idaho, Oregon, and Washington to be added to the list of states that can ship wheat to Kenya.

MORE DETAILS


A New Definition of WOTUS (from EPA Headquarters)

The Navigable Waters Protection Rule ends decades of uncertainty over where federal jurisdiction begins and ends. For the first time, EPA and the Army are recognizing the difference between federally protected wetlands and state protected wetlands. It adheres to the statutory limits of the agencies’ authority. It also ensures that America’s water protections – among the best in the world – remain strong, while giving our states and tribes the certainty to manage their waters in ways that best protect their natural resources and local economies.

MORE DETAILS


Effects of 1980 Grain Embargo


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Effects of 1980 Grain Embargo Echo Through the Years

Originally published April 14, 2020, By Vince Peterson,USW President


As a new decade and a new future for wheat export market development dawned in January 1980, the urgency facing the wheat-producer boards of both Great Plains Wheat and Western Wheat Associates could not have been much greater.


They were under the strain of discussions and negotiations for months in the effort to merge the two existing regional wheat market development groups into one, single national association. Then, on January 4, these farmer leaders and all U.S. wheat producers sat in disbelief hearing President Jimmy Carter address the nation and summarily cancel 17 million metric tons (MMT) of existing wheat, corn and soybean sales contracts between U.S. exporters and the former USSR. That was 17 MMT of production that had already been grown and harvested and scheduled for movement by truck, barge, rail car and ocean vessels through the U.S. grain export system; 17 MMT of system revenue, margins and farmers’ annual income – all cancelled.

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Neonics and Chlorpyrifos information sheets

Related Important Links

OR-OSHA "Fighting farmland and rangeland wildfires" publication

Guide to Farm Trucking in Oregon – ODOT, online version

OSU Extension Cereal Newsletters – online reports by county


Crop Quality Oregon State Reports


Items of Interest

NRCS Camp

Farmworker Safety Funds (FSF) More information here.

OSU Winter Wheat Variety Trial Info

Wheat Marketing Center - Crop Quality Reports

Wheat Marketing Center - PNW Soft White Wheat Annual Reports

NEW ARS Website

Conservation at Work Video Series

2020 Oregon Agricultural Wildfire Refresher

Broadleaf Herbicide Brochure


Fact sheet on 2020 trade

NASS major reports released


U.S. Wheat Around the World

New Tool to Combat Major Wheat Disease

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists and their colleagues have discovered a gene that can be used to develop varieties of wheat that will be more resistant to Fusarium Head Blight (FHB), a disease that is a major threat both overseas and to the nation's $10 billion annual wheat crop.

Learn More

Be Road Safe!

To help keep both motorists and farmers safe, the Oregon Farm Bureau (OFB) Health & Safety Committee offers a video and free brochure with important tips on how to share the road safely with farm equipment.

MORE DETAILS



Podcasts

Washington Grain Commission Podcasts


Worker Protection Standards

Web-Based Training for Trainers of Agricultural Workers and Pesticide Handlers under the National Worker Protection Standard (WPS) – Train the Trainer course – online, 24/7 training

WPS Compliance Assistance Library – A comprehensive guide with links to FAQ and more.

WPS: A Manual for Trainers of Ag Workers & Pesticide Handlers

PERC website – Pesticide Educational Resources Collaborative

“How to Comply” Manual


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