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Soy Briefs

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Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds hosted a flood recovery advisory board meeting at the Capitol last week. The board assigned working groups for a more coordinated approach to flood recovery in the state (Photo: Bethany Baratta/Iowa Soybean Association)

Ankeny, IA — Two months after flood waters swamped the western side of the state, Leo Ettleman still can’t reach some of his fields or grain bins.

“We can’t even get to our bins; some can’t get to their homes to see what it’s like. There are grain bins that haven’t burst, but we can’t check them because we can’t get there without an airboat. So, every day is the same old thing; you just sit back and wait,” said Ettleman, who farms near Sidney. He’ll be lucky to plant 800 of his 2,200 acres this year. “That will probably be the max we get planted this year,” he said.

This is the stark reality for many of the Iowa farmers impacted by the flooding this spring. Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds’ flood recovery advisory board convened last week to discuss next steps in getting farmers and communities back on track.

Ankeny, IA — The Iowa Soybean Association (ISA) is celebrating its 55-year anniversary in 2019. Congratulations to the Iowa soybean farmers who have worked hard these last 55 years to ensure the success of the organization!

Emerald green will be used to honor the accomplishments of ISA members, partners and staff. Like anything that lasts 55 years, an emerald is a very rare find and is known to signify a deep and lasting commitment. To kick off the celebration, enjoy this special issue of the Iowa Soybean Review.

Ankeny, IA — Iowa soybean farmers are raising their voices and telling their stories in the media amid an escalating trade war with China, a delayed planting season and flooding aftermath. Below are a handful of recent interviews:

  • Tim Bardole, ISA President-elect and Rippey farmer, on NBC.
  • Lindsay, ISA President and Keota farmer, in South China Morning Post and on Radio Iowa.
  • Grant Kimberley, ISA director of market development and in China Daily.
  • Randy Miller, ISA District 8 Director and Lacona farmer, on KCCI.
  • Brent Renner, ISA At Large Director and Klemme farmer, on KIMT (Mason City).
  • Rick Juchems, ISA District 3 Director and Plainfield farmer, and Jim Fitkin, ISA Communications Squad member and Cedar Falls farmer, KWWL (Waterloo).

Ankeny, IA — The Soy Transportation Coalition (STC) and the Panama Canal Authority recently extended a memorandum of understanding (MOU) between the two organizations. The agreement, signed by STC chairman Mike Bellar and Panama Canal Authority chief executive officer Jorge L. Quijano, extends the partnership between the two organizations to perform joint promotional events and exchange information in the effort to raise awareness of the Panama Canal’s role as a key link in the agricultural supply chain.

Washington, DC — Foreign Affairs Minister Chrystia Freeland left Washington, DC, this week with no tariff deal — one of the key obstacles to passage for President Donald Trump's U.S.-Canada-Mexico Agreement (USMCA).

Freeland met with Senate Finance Committee Chairman Chuck Grassley (R-IA), who had said earlier (via an Instagram post) that the tariffs might soon be lifted. She expressed optimism over incremental progress, stating the two countries are "one meeting closer to achieving a great outcome,” though she refused to speculate publicly on whether a resolution of Canada’s trade dispute with the U.S. is close at hand.

However, the U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said earlier that the U.S., Canada and Mexico are getting close to a deal to lift U.S. steel and aluminum tariffs on its North American allies.

“I think we are close to an understanding with Mexico and Canada,” Mnuchin told lawmakers Wednesday at a Senate hearing. “I’ve spoken to the finance ministers. (U.S. Trade Representative Robert) Lighthizer is leading the effort on this, but I can assure you it is a priority of ours.”

Washington, DC — USDA’s Farm Service Agency (FSA) will accept applications beginning June 3, 2019, for certain practices under the continuous Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) signup and will offer extensions for expiring CRP contracts. The 2018 Farm Bill reauthorized CRP, one of the country’s largest conservation programs.

“USDA offers a variety of conservation programs to farmers and ranchers, and the Conservation Reserve Program is an important tool for private lands management,” said FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce. “CRP allows agricultural producers to set aside land to reduce soil erosion, improve water quality, provide habitat for wildlife and boost soil health.”

Washington, DC — Soybean meal is making moves to the upside with futures at the CME Group now at or above the $300 per ton mark. Ted Seifried of Zaner Ag Hedge recently told AgDay's Clinton Griffiths that while soybeans struggle to find stability, meal may be a different story.

"Obviously, with ASF over in China and Southeast Asia, that could potentially be creating more demand for our pork," says Seifried.  "If we start doing business with China on a regular basis again, I think there's a wonderful opportunity for our pork producers and for pork exports."

To safeguard the U.S. swine herd, the U.S. Department of Agriculture is furthering its overall African Swine Fever preparedness efforts with the implementation of a surveillance plan. As part of this plan, the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service will work with the swine industry, the states, and veterinary diagnostic laboratories to test for the disease. The surveillance testing of commercial swine herds is an addition to USDA’s overall African swine fever prevention effort.

Additionally, the University of Minnesota Swine has taken a novel approach to strengthen the U.S. market against global swine diseases. The Swine Disease Global Surveillance Project compiles data from organizations, governments, producers and experts around the world to provide near real-time global surveillance of swine diseases. Read the latest report.

For media inquiries, please contact Katie James, ISA Public Relations Manager at or Aaron Putze, ISA Communications Director at

For permission to republish articles or to request high-res photos contact Aaron Putze at Iowa Soybean Association | 1255 SW Prairie Trail Pkwy | Ankeny | IA | 50023 | US

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