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Chairman Conaway Supports Bipartisan Bill to Repeal Death Tax

By a vote of 240 to 179, the U.S. House of Representatives today passed H.R. 1105, the Death Tax Repeal Act of 2015.

From the House Committee on Agriculture:

Today, House Agriculture Committee Chairman K. Michael Conaway (R-TX) issued the following statement after the U.S. House of Representatives passed H.R. 1105, the Death Tax Repeal Act of 2015, authored by fellow Texan Rep. Kevin Brady (R-TX). Read the rest of this entry »

Strong Citrus Program Planned for FSHS Annual Meeting

The Florida State Horticulture Society (FSHS) annual meeting will take place May 31-June 2 at the Renaissance World Golf Village Resort in St. Augustine. The citrus section of the program will include 25 presentations. See the list of citrus abstracts and get more information on the event.

Florida Agriculture Literacy Day Scheduled for Tuesday, April 21

fl-ag-day-2015From Florida Agriculture in the Classroom:

GAINESVILLE – The 12th annual Florida Agriculture Literacy Day is scheduled for Tuesday April 21, 2015, and a new non-fiction children’s book developed for it will highlight Florida’s livestock and poultry industries.
The book, the title of which is ‘Drive Through Florida: Livestock and Poultry,’ features an animated red truck named ‘Ole Red’ that takes students on a tour of Florida’s beef, dairy, poultry, swine, equine, sheep and goat industries. Read the rest of this entry »

Southeast AgNet This Week: Planting Intentions; FSA Deadlines Extended

AgNet This Week

Today’s issue of Southeast AgNet This Week includes details from the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s 2015 Planting Intentions Report and information concerning an extension to some important deadlines. Want to learn more? Click here to subscribe and view the current issue.

Discussing Big Data for Agriculture

Picture courtesy of AgWired

Picture courtesy of AgWired

A panel discussion was held during a breakfast last week by the National Wheat Foundation and National Association of Wheat Growers for Ag Day in Washington D.C. According to a story from AgWired, topics such as biotechnology, sustainability, and research were discussed. One of the participants was Matt Erickson, chief economist for the Senate Agriculture Committee, who talked about Big Data and agriculture.

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Precautions in Growing and Eating Flowers

herb salad with nasturtium flowers

herb salad with nasturtium flowers

While they may be healthy to eat – flowers also come with their own warning labels. Cathy Isom finishes up her series on edible flowers by filling us in on what experts say you need to know before you grow.

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Edible Flowers as Part of Your Plate

Dandelion Preserves

Dandelion Preserves

There are several flower species that are not only edible but also delicious, and that can be prepared and used in many ways. Cathy Isom talks about some of these in the first of her two part series on edible flowers.

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USDA Implements 2014 Farm Bill Provision to Limit Payments to Non-Farmers

From the U.S. Department of Agriculture:

WASHINGTON, March 24, 2015 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) today announced a proposed rule to limit farm payments to non-farmers, consistent with requirements Congress mandated in the 2014 Farm Bill. The proposed rule limits farm payments to individuals who may be Read the rest of this entry »

Ag in Review for the Week Ending March 20, 2015

In this week’s recap of agricultural news from around the Southeast, we celebrated National Agriculture Day this past Wednesday and talked about the latest data helping shine some light on the question, “What is a family farm”. We also looked at how the latest cases of Avian Influenza serve as reminders of the importance of bio-security practices on poultry farms, and how many peanut farmers are hoping to see some new contracts soon.

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Commissioner Putnam Announces Florida to Receive $7.3 Million to Combat Agricultural Pests, Diseases

From the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – The Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services today announced the state will receive $7.3 million in federal funding through the federal Farm Bill to help eradicate pests and control diseases that affect the state’s $120 billion agriculture industry.

“From citrus greening to giant African land snails and many others, pests and diseases are major threats to Florida agriculture,” said Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam. “This funding will help prevent the spread of pests and diseases throughout the state and help Read the rest of this entry »

Statement from Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on National Agriculture Day

WASHINGTON, March 18, 2015 – Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today released the following statement:


Tom Vilsack

“On this National Agriculture Day, we acknowledge the impact of American agriculture on our daily lives and our nation’s economy. We thank the scientists, conservationists, farmers and ranchers dedicated to the work that feeds the nation and helps to keep us safe. Their work touches the lives of all Americans – from the farm field to the kitchen table and from the air we breathe to the energy that powers our country. Read the rest of this entry »

Family Farms are the Focus of New Agriculture Census Data

USDAToday is National Agriculture Day across the country, and as we celebrate this annual event, the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Agricultural Statistics Service is reporting that family-owned farms remain the backbone of the agriculture industry. The latest data comes from the Census of Agriculture farm typology report which helps shine some light on the question, “What is a family farm?”.

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Florida Legislative Days Event in Tallahassee

John Hoblick

John Hoblick

Florida Farm Bureau is hosting its annual Legislative Days today and tomorrow (March 17 and 18) in Tallahassee. The Legislative Briefing Dinner will be this evening at 5:30 p.m. at the Tallahassee Automobile Museum, with a full day of events planned for Wednesday. FFBF President John Hoblick hopes folks will join them for the annual event.

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Celebrating National Agriculture Day

ag-day-web-banner-2015This Wednesday, March 18 will be National Agriculture Day, spotlighting American agriculture and serving as a reminder that agriculture is part of us all.

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For more information go to

HM.CLAUSE Seed Co. and Parent Limagrain Executives in Gainesville to Announce Support for UF’s ‘Challenge 2050 Project’

At the press conference, UF/IFAS Sr VP for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Dr. Jack Payne (center), is flanked by Limagrain CEO Daniel Cheron (left), and HM.CLAUSE Seed Company CEO Matthew Johnston.

At the press conference, UF/IFAS Senior Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Dr. Jack Payne (center), is flanked by Limagrain CEO Daniel Cheron (left), and HM.CLAUSE Seed Company CEO Matthew Johnston.

University of Florida (UF) leaders are hosting executives from a global seed company in Gainesville this week for a big announcement. When you consider Limagrain is the world’s fourth largest seed company overall, and its HM.CLAUSE Vegetable Seed business unit is number two in vegetable seeds, it’s a pretty big deal that the entire board of directors and executive team are in town to be a part of it. UF/IFAS Press ConferenceIn addition to touring UF’s ag research facilities this week, they are here to formally announce a unique investment and support program for the “Challenge 2050 Project” at UF/IFAS. If you’re a Florida farmer, you’ll want to Hear the informative report, and more.

Producing and Licensing New UF/IFAS Plant Varieties

Jackie Burns

Jackie Burns

Producing and Licensing New Plant Varieties Developed by UF/IFAS Plant Breeders

By Jackie Burns,
UF/IFAS dean for research and director of the Florida Agricultural Experiment Station

For more than a century, University of Florida Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences (UF/IFAS) plant breeders have released new plant varieties with superior traits such as improved disease resistance, greater yields and better flavor. The varieties developed by UF/IFAS have had tremendous economic benefit to the state of Florida and its agricultural producers. Read the rest of this entry »

Secretary Vilsack and Former Agriculture Secretaries Veneman and Glickman Announce Bipartisan Efforts to Expand Trade

Bipartisan Group Urging Passage of Trade Legislation Critical to Agriculture Economy





Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack and former U.S. Secretaries of Agriculture Ann Veneman (George W. Bush Administration) and Dan Glickman (Clinton Administration) today announced new bipartisan efforts to expand trade and boost exports. The secretaries discussed the importance of new trade partnerships that will help to expand American exports, increase wages, and help American businesses, including farms and other agriculture businesses, grow and create jobs across the country.

The past six years have been the strongest in history for agricultural trade, with U.S. agricultural product exports totaling $771.7 billion since 2009. USDA strives to create new marketing opportunities for farmers and ranchers so that they can sustain and grow their businesses and, in turn, foster economic growth in rural communities and create new jobs. Increased trade and exports will build on this success.

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Read the letter.

University of Florida OKs 3 New Blueberry Cultivars, 3 New Coleus Cultivars

From the University of Florida/IFAS:

GAINESVILLE, Fla. – Three new cultivars each of blueberry and coleus have been approved for release by a University of Florida panel.

The Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences Cultivar Release Committee approved Read the rest of this entry »

Students Use National FFA Week to Share Importance of Agriculture

From the National FFA Organization:

ffa-logoINDIANAPOLIS (Monday, Feb. 23, 2015/National FFA Organization) – More than a half-million students in all 50 states will share the importance of agriculture in our daily lives, spread their passion for agriculture and host communitywide events to help others in need this week.

It’s National FFA Week and a host of activities are planned to raise awareness about Read the rest of this entry »

AgMIP Experts Coming to Florida

Dr. Jack Payne

Dr. Jack Payne

In recent years, computer technology has begun to help agricultural producers solve dilemmas as old as farming itself. And next week, agricultural systems modeling experts with the Agricultural Model Intercomparison and Improvement Program, otherwise known as AgMIP, will be on the University of Florida campus to discuss their latest findings. UF’s Senior Vice President for Agriculture and Natural Resources, Dr. Jack Payne says this is a great story.

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Alabama Agriculture & Forestry Steering Committee Presents Strategic Plan

From the Alabama Department of Agriculture & Industries:

MONTGOMERY, Alabama. . . Members of the Steering Committee for the Alabama Agriculture & Forestry Strategic Plan Tuesday presented to Governor Robert Bentley their report calling for a more cooperative relationship between business and government that, if enacted, would Read the rest of this entry »


farm profitability
Everett Griner talks about agriculture profitability…and who cares in today’s Agri View.

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Bee Aware

Varroa Mite

Varroa Mite

Everett Griner talks about CCD not the only bee problem in today’s Agri View.

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UF/IFAS Challenge 2050 Students Networked at Tampa International Seed Convention

By Kimberly Moore Wilmoth
Source: Sierra Scott

TAMPA, Fla. — Nearly 20 students from the University of Florida’s Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences were treated to an all-expense paid trip to the 54th annual American Seed Trade Association’s 54th annual Vegetable & Flower Seed Conference show in Tampa this week.

Limagrain, an international agricultural co-operative group specializing in field and vegetable seeds, and Learn more about the conference.

Seed Company Exec Compliments Univ of Florida Student Program




Visiting with AgNet’s Gary Cooper at this week’s American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) Vegetable & Flower Seed Conference in Tampa, HM CLAUSE Seed Company CEO Matthew Johnston offers a few comments about the continued growth and advancement of this specialty vegetable seeds company, and comments at length about a unique student program at the University of Florida that helps prepare students to get involved with the industry’s challenge to feed a hungry world in the future.

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ASTA Vegetable & Flower Seed Conference Underway in Tampa

It’s the annual gathering of the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA), where key players in the global vegetable and flower seed industries come together to do business and keep up with the issues driving the industry. AgNet’s Gary Cooper reports from the scene as once again ASTA meeting attendees are learning how critical consumer food interests are to what goes on at the farm.

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Putnam: ‘Think Big, Act Boldly’ on Water, Land


THE CAPITAL, TALLAHASSEE, January 22, 2015………. Florida lawmakers, who received a directive from voters in November to increase spending to protect water sources and sensitive lands, were told to “think big and act boldly” by the state agriculture commissioner on Thursday.

Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam told members of the House State Affairs Committee that any approach to addressing Florida’s water needs should first focus on restoring natural springs and Read the rest of this entry »

Florida Farm Bureau Leader Offers Support for Commissioner Putnam’s Water Policy Statement

From the Florida Farm Bureau Federation:

FFBFGainesville, Fla.—Florida Farm Bureau Federation President John L. Hoblick expressed his appreciation for the general state water policy outlined today by Florida Agriculture Commissioner Adam Putnam before the House Committee on State Affairs in Tallahassee. Read the rest of this entry »

Commissioner Putnam Presents Recommendations for Water Policy to House State Affairs Committee

From the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services:

TALLAHASSEE, Fla. – Florida Commissioner of Agriculture Adam H. Putnam presented recommendations on comprehensive water policy for Florida to the House State Affairs Committee today.

Excerpts of his testimony are below:

“Water is the biggest long-term issue facing Florida, regardless of what part of the state you are from. … Every corner of the state for various reasons is in some form of conflict. This will be hard. This will be Read the rest of this entry »

Alabama Producer Elected to AFBF Position

Jon Hegeman (photo courtesy of AgWired)

Jon Hegeman (photo courtesy of AgWired)

During the recent American Farm Bureau Federation Convention, the new chairman of the Young Farmer and Rancher committee took his position. And that person is Jon Hegeman from White Plains, Alabama.

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