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Northwest Iowa Dairy Outlooks

A local discussion of current science and issues concerning dairying in northwest iowa

Monthly Archives: February 2017

Orange City- The first hearing in the country on the 2018 Farm Bill re-authorization will be held at 2 p.m. on Feb. 23 on the Kansas State campus in Manhattan, KS.

Beth Doran and Fred M. Hall, Northwest Iowa livestock and dairy specialists will host the live webinar at the Sioux County Extension office. No registration is required, but seating will be on a first come basis. While those attending will be able hear the questions and testimony, if they would like to submit written testimony they will be able to email comments to the ag committee. This is the first of eight hearing to be held across the country.

Chairman of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture Nutrition and Forestry U.S. Sen. Pat Roberts says lawmakers need clear direction from producers on what is working and what isn’t working in farm country.

For more information contact the Sioux County Extension office at 712.737.4230.

Rock Valley Hay Auction for Monday, Feb 20, 2017

Receipts:  31 loads    Last Week:  43 loads    Year Ago:   30 Loads

Compared to last week:  Market was sharply lower with quality average to poor.

Prices dollars per ton, except where noted.  All sales FOB Rock Valley, Iowa, vicinity.

One load Small Squares equals approximately 5 tons; Large Squares and Large Rounds range from 10-25 tons per load.

Alfalfa:  Fair:  Large Squares, 4 loads 77.50; Large Rounds, 4 loads 80.00-82.50.

Utility:  Large Rounds, 1 load 45.00.

Alfalfa/Grass Mixed:  Good:  Large Rounds, 1 load 90.00.  Fair:  Large Rounds, 1 load 72.50.

Grass:  Good:  Large Rounds, 1 load 85.00.  Fair:  Large Rounds, 7 loads 55.00-70.00; Small Squares, 1 load 72.50.  Utility:  Large Squares, 1 load 40.00; Large Rounds, 2 loads 45.00-50.00.

Straw:  Large Squares, 1 load 55.00.  Large Rounds, 3 loads 47.50-57.50.

Corn Stalks:  Large Rounds, 4 loads 40.00-42.50.

Come and visit the NW Iowa Ag Fair in Spencer today and visit me and other field specialists in the Extension booth.

Rock Valley Hay Auction for Thursday, Feb 16, 2017

Receipts:  97 loads    Last Week:  98 loads    Last Year:  100 loads

Compared to last week:   Market was 5.00 to 10.00 lower for all types of hay

and qualities.  All sales FOB Rock Valley, Iowa, vicinity.

One load Small Squares equals approximately 5 tons; Large Squares and Large Rounds range from 10-25 tons per load.

Alfalfa:  Premium:  Small Squares, 1 load 150.00.  Good:  Large Squares, 4 loads 90.00-95.00; Large Rounds, 7 loads 85.00-87.50.  Fair:  Large Squares, 8 loads 65.00-82.50; Large Rounds, 23 loads 60.00-80.00.  Utility:  Large Squares, 1 load 50.00; Large Rounds, 1 load 55.00.

Grass:  Premium:  Large Squares, 2 loads 80.00-87.50; Large Rounds, 10 loads 80.00-90.00.  Good:  Large Squares, 2 loads 65.00-70.00; Large Rounds, 17 loads 57.50-77.50.  Fair:  Large Rounds, 1 load 47.50.

Alfalfa/Grass Mix:  Good:  Large Squares, 1 load 80.00; Large Rounds, 3 loads 82.50-97.50.  Fair:  Large Rounds, 2 loads 60.00-67.50.  Utility:  Large Rounds 1 load 35.00.

Oat Hay:  Large Rounds, 1 load 72.50.

Straw:  Large Squares, 1 load 65.00.  Large Rounds, 6 loads 40.00-70.00, mostly 65.00-70.00.

Cornstalks:  Large Rounds, 5 loads 35.00-42.50.


As I have been traveling in NW Iowa, I’m seeing standing water in fields and am wondering what how unusual warm temperatures will effect the stands. ISUEO Agronomist Brian Lang send out this link- it has lots of good information:

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There is some fear President Trump’s stance on immigration could heavily impact the availability of immigrants, it seems a new Senate bill will also be cause for concern. The new bill called the ‘Reforming American Immigration for Strong Employment Act’ is sponsored by senators Tom Cotton (R-AK) and David Perdue (R-GA). The pair of senators say the bill aims to “reduce the influx of workers drastically in hopes to reserve jobs for low skilled American workers.”

If passed, the bill would make getting a visa harder, placing restrictions and caps on some visa categories and eliminating others all together. Proponents of the bill say it will provide opportunity for Americans who can’t currently find jobs. Those who oppose the bill are concerned with the bill as many well-paying jobs in the agriculture industry already go unfilled year after year.

“One thing is clear, jobs on the farm are not desirable to most American workers regardless of wage and benefits,” officials from the American Dairy Coalition say. “This bill restricts the ability of farmers to have access to a safe, legal workforce.”

The Coalition is urging dairy producers to contact their Senators to express concern with the bill.


An article in Feedstuffs noted that the National Dairy Farmers Assuring Responsible Management (FARM) Program has opened participation in its third component: FARM Environmental Stewardship (ES).

The ES module joins the FARM Program’s two other pillars, FARM Animal Care and FARM Antibiotic Stewardship. The voluntary FARM Environmental Stewardship program helps dairy producers augment their environmental management efforts by identifying ways to improve their on-farm sustainability.

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