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Topics - Ed

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Life in the Country / I Think My Dog's a Democrat
« on: April 01, 2018, 08:26:09 PM »
"I Think My Dog's a Democrat"
by Bryan Lewis

Life in the Country / NRA Country
« on: April 01, 2018, 07:27:06 PM »

This is NRA country --  by Justin Moore.

Robotics and Technology / Robots...The Future of Farming?
« on: March 31, 2018, 03:28:39 PM »
Robo-Hub — the web portal for agricultural robotics

At RoboUniverse in San Diego, agricultural robots and the labor
shortage were quickly identified as the biggest issues facing the
industry today. Water scarcity and field health were other key issues
mentioned, but it’s labor that keeps farmers up at night and robotics
that could come to their rescue.


———  Read More about Agricultural Robotics --------

Thirteen fascinating farming robots:

Among other predictions, Interstellar offered us some clues about
the future of farming. Long story short: It's all about the robots.
From field scouting drones to robotic harvesters, the industry
that keeps you fed is becoming totally dominated by autonomous

Rural Development / Video Presentations on Rural Development
« on: March 31, 2018, 03:24:51 PM »
(1) Strategy for developing potential
by Cormac Russell

Cormac Russell


(2)  Terry Brunner — secret to thriving towns -- 9/27/2013

As Director of Rural Development for New Mexico,
Terry Bruner traveled to rural communities all across the state.
As such, he's got a unique vantage point on what makes
some communities thrive while other falter, and at TEDxABQ 2013
he presents what he's learned.

Rural Development / Is Rural America Struggling?
« on: March 31, 2018, 03:21:37 PM »
Is Rural America Struggling?
(Rural population decline reflects impact of recession)
By Will Flannigan -January 9, 2014

SALEM, Ohio — As America continues its slow, but steady, economic recovery, some parts of  the country are being left behind, according to the USDA’s report Rural America at a Glance.

Rural America at a Glance

(Download .pdf)

Rural Development / Resources for Developers
« on: March 31, 2018, 03:19:50 PM »

The National Rural Assembly is a movement of people and organizations devoted to building a stronger, more vibrant rural America for children, families, and communities. We are focusing on three critical issues that will affect the quality of life in communities across the nation.

Influential Corporations / Investing
« on: March 31, 2018, 03:15:44 PM »
Kraft Heinz (KHC)
Here's what attracted Warren Buffet to Kraft Heinz...

The combined company generated more than $26.5 billion in revenue in 2016. Of that over $10.3 billion was gross profit, good enough for a gross profit margin of 39%. That's impressive for a company that simply sells ketchup, mustard and Oscar Mayer hot dogs.

And the numbers only get better...

Kraft Heinz generated nearly $4 billion in free cash flow in 2016. Free cash flow is the money left over after the company has paid all of its bills and reinvested back into its business. This is money it can dish out to shareholders in the form of dividends and share buybacks. Kraft Heinz pays out a respectable yield of 2.6%.

What's more Kraft Heinz's profit margin is more than double its competition coming in at 16.2% versus the industry average of 8.2%.

The bottom line is that Buffett may not purchase the "sexiest" companies, but he'll put his money in a concentrated few that are bound to make him a windfall of cash year after year, just like Kraft Heinz has done.


Influential Corporations / Kraft-Heinz, Con-Agra, Agrican
« on: March 31, 2018, 03:13:47 PM »
May 2, 2017
Monsanto NemaStrike receives EPA Approval

Monsanto Company received the green light from the U.S. EPA Monday for an issued registration for tioxazafen, aka NemaStrike Technology. This approval will allow farmers to reap nematode control benefits of the technology in 2018, pending state approvals.
NemaStrike Technology, a nematicide that will be offered as part of Acceleron Seed Applied Solutions, will offer a novel mode of action that stays in the root zone where nematodes attack. NemaStrike Technology will provide broad-spectrum control of plant parasitic nematodes and consistent yield protection performance in corn, soybeans, and cotton.
“This blockbuster technology will be a game-changing addition to our seed applied solutions portfolio by providing a novel solution to a yield robbing pest,” said Brett Begemann, Monsanto President and Chief Operating Officer. “We work to provide farmers with highly effective and easy-to-use management tools to protect the health and potential of their crops. In 2018, NemaStrike Technology will provide breakthrough yield protection technology to farmers across the United States.”
Plant parasitic nematodes are microscopic roundworms in the soil that steal corn, soybean, and cotton yields by feeding on plant roots, facilitating bacterial and fungal infections, and spreading viruses. Nematode damage is often mistaken as other issues in the field, so growers do not always recognize they have a problem. However, EPA has stated that plant parasitic nematodes cause an estimated 14 percent loss in agriculture production worldwide, with $80-100 billion worth of crop losses every year globally.

Influential Corporations / Monsanto's Controversial Dicamba
« on: March 31, 2018, 03:11:06 PM »
Food for Thought

How Monsanto And Scofflaw Farmers Hurt Soybeans In Arkansas
August 1, 2016  7:00 AM ET
Dan Charles
From the article:
When Tom Barber, a scientist at the University of Arkansas who studies weeds, drives the country roads of eastern Arkansas this summer, his trained eye can spot the damage: soybean leaves contorted into cup-like shapes.
He's seeing it in field after field. Similar damage is turning up in Tennessee and in the "boot-heel" region of Missouri. Tens of thousands of acres are affected.
This is no natural phenomenon of weather or disease. It's almost certainly the result of a crime. The disfigured leaves are evidence that a neighboring farmer sprayed a herbicide called dicamba, probably in violation of the law.
Dicamba has been around for decades, and it is notorious for a couple of things: It vaporizes quickly and blows with the wind. And it's especially toxic to soybeans, even at ridiculously low concentrations
Damage from drifting pesticides isn't unfamiliar to farmers. But the reason for this year's plague of dicamba damage is unprecedented. "I've never seen anything like this before," says Bob Scott, a weed specialist from the University of Arkansas. "This is a unique situation that Monsanto created.

These soybean leaves show evidence of damage from dicamba. It could cut the the harvest by 10 to 30 percent. (Courtesy of the University of Arkansas)

Additional information:

Big & Little Ag / Environmental, Ecological, Disease Threats
« on: August 10, 2017, 12:28:10 PM »
CBS4 (Denver) News Report on endangered state of honeybees.
July 25, 2017


CBS4 found being a bee isn’t easy, and the people who make a living off them have a lot to worry about.
Some beekeepers in Boulder County saw more than half their hives, or even more, die off over the winter. Beekeeper Tim Brod said he averages 25 percent loss every winter.
“Just to give you a little perspective, if you’re losing 30 to 40 percent of your livestock, if this were cattle, chicken or pigs year after year, the National Guard would be here going ‘This is a huge crisis,'” he said.


Information and Resources / Forums -- online and public
« on: August 10, 2017, 12:21:14 PM »
(1) Rural Living Forum

(2) Supporting Communities — Rural Residents Forum

(3) City-Data -- Always a good source for candid perspectives

Assessing Locations / Location, location -- scouting reports
« on: July 13, 2017, 01:10:21 PM »
Best Places to Live
Rural Living Today (online magazine)
Living in the country ~ Best rural places to live.

Dreaming of a different way of life? Many people seek solitude or just more of a back-to-the-basics type of lifestyle.  Whether you plan to relocate from a large city or suburbs, you will find country life very different. Learn about living in the country and best rural places to live.
List of winners of “Ten Best Counties to Live”

Photo: Rural Living Today

Organic and Local / The Local Movement --- Farm to School
« on: July 12, 2017, 11:29:23 PM »
The National Farm to School Network

From the web site:

The National Farm to School Network is an information, advocacy and networking hub for communities working to bring local food sourcing and food and agriculture education into school systems and early care and education environments.
Farm to school enriches the connection communities have with fresh, healthy food and local food producers by changing food purchasing and education practices at schools and early care and education settings.

Photo: Farm to School Network


Agriculture Business / Publications
« on: July 07, 2017, 06:39:47 PM »

Soybean and cotton acres surge in Arkansas;
rice production still expected to plummet

by George Jared (

Arkansas rice farmers will still likely harvest a little more than 1 million acres this fall despite damaging flood waters earlier this spring that impacted much of Northeast Arkansas. But yields will almost certainly be lower, and the projected acreage will be 300,000 acres less this year than in 2016, rice agronomist Dr. Jarrod Hardke told Talk Business & Politics.

State officials could have a tabulation about the totality of the damage from the floods this week, too, he said. It’s been estimated the damage totals could top $335 million.

Regional & Specialty / Vineyards: Yakima, NY State, Napa....
« on: June 24, 2017, 10:11:52 PM »

List of American Viticultural Areas

(From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)

An American Viticultural Area (AVA) is a designated wine grape-growing region in the United States distinguishable by geographic features, with boundaries defined by the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB), United States Department of the Treasury.[1] As of 2012, there were 206 recognized AVAs—several of which are shared by two or more states.

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