Monday, June 30,  2014

Today's Update! 

EPA To Hold Hearing In Crowley On "Waters Of The U.S." Proposed Rule      

On March 25th, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers (Corps) announced a proposed rule that revises the definition of "Waters of the United States" (WOTUS) under the Clean Water Act (CWA). The agencies emphasize that the proposal seeks to provide regulatory clarity after significant uncertainty following two Supreme Court decisions. This proposal is being evaluated by many agricultural organizations and agriculture producers are being encouraged to comment on the proposed rule.
The EPA has asked the Louisiana Department of Agriculture and Forestry (LDAF) and the LSU AgCenter, to provide them with a forum to discuss this very important proposal. A listening session is scheduled for July 9th at the LSU AgCenter's Acadia Parish Extension Office in Crowley. Registration and lunch (provided) will begin at 11:30 a.m. Bill Richardson, Vice President for Agriculture says, "Our goal is to allow our federal partners to have an open and constructive dialogue with the Louisiana agriculture leadership on how this proposed rule might impact agriculture at the local level."
The public has an opportunity to comment until October 20, 2014 on the proposal. Ron Curry, administrator of EPA's Region office says, "We are very interested in hearing the producers' perspective on this very important rule. It is our job to listen and encourage producers to comment as to how the proposed rule may affect agriculture."
According to the EPA, the proposed rule preserves existing CWA exemptions and exclusions for agricultural activities. Additionally, the agencies, in coordination with USDA's Natural Resource Conservation Service, will now exempt 56 established NRCS conservation practices from the CWA Section 404 dredged or fill permitting requirements, if they occur in waters covered by the CWA.
Commissioner of Agriculture and Forestry Mike Strain, D.V.M, says, "This is a way for Louisiana agriculture producers to play a role in national policy decisions. I strongly encourage producers to attend."
If interested in participating, call or email Valerie Dartez with the LSU AgCenter at 337-788-7531 or by email to by4:30 p.m. on July 3, 2014 to RSVP.
For more information, contact Carrie Castille, PhD, with the LDAF at225-922-1234 or



Avoyelles Farm Bureau Wins President's Trophy, Jeff Davis Couple Named Top Young Farmers  

For the second year in a row, the Avoyelles Parish Farm Bureau was awarded the coveted President's Trophy by the Louisiana Farm Bureau Federation at the organization's 92nd annual meeting in New Orleans last week.
Avoyelles Parish Farm Bureau President Phillip Lemartiniere accepted the award Thursday, June 26 on behalf of the parish membership from Louisiana Farm Bureau President Ronnie Anderson. The award is the highest honor bestowed during the farm group's annual meeting and topped a list of award winners that included the state's top young farmer, top young farm woman, award of excellence winner, discussion meet winner and top ag educator. "I'm so proud of everyone in the parish who worked so hard to promote agriculture," Lemartiniere said. "It's been a long time coming and all of our parish membership deserve this trophy." The win was the third time Avoyelles Parish received the award since the President's Trophy was first presented in 1969. The parish first received the award in 1972 and again in 2013. The President's Trophy recognizes outstanding contributions to Louisiana agriculture by parish volunteer leadership and farmer and rancher members. Avoyelles was among 61 parish Farm Bureaus recognized for their efforts in promoting agriculture. The organization also recognized ag educators, farm journalists and young farmers from the organization's Young Farmers and Ranchers programs across the state.
Also recognized during
 Thursday night's awards program were John and Brianne Compton, of Jeff Davis Parish. The couple was named the Farm Bureau's 2014 Young Farmers and Ranchers Achievement Award winners. The award is presented to farm couples 35 and younger whose farming operations balance production, profit and environmental concerns. It's the state's top honor for young farmers across Louisiana. "We're honored to be recognized here in New Orleans among all our family and friends," John Compton said. "We strive to keep our family farm running as efficiently as possible. Our farm is truly a family farm and I think we've worked hard to keep the that tradition alive.'' Part of the Compton's prize package includes a $40,000 cash credit towards the purchase of a 2014 Chevrolet or General Motors of their choice, savings bonds and other prizes. As Louisiana's state winner the couple will compete for the national title in January in San Diego during the annual meeting of the American Farm Bureau.
Also at the awards program the Farm Bureau named Katie Ramagos of Iberville Parish, its Outstanding Young Farm Woman for 2014.  "My involvement in Farm Bureau is part of my life," Ramagos said.  "It gives young farmers a voice and that's very important to my family and to the survival of the family farm in Louisiana."
Taking home the YF&R Committee's 2014 Excellence in Agriculture Award was Matthew and Stephanie Gravois of St. James Parish. The award honors outstanding contributions to agriculture by professionals in the industry who are not primarily engaged in production agriculture.
Also at
 Thursday's awards program, the St. Martin Parish Women's Leadership Committee was awarded the 2014 WLC Award of Excellence. Parish WLC Chair Nicole Latiolais accepted the award for her parish. The award recognizes the critical role farmwomen play in volunteer activities and rural life. 
Also repeating a win this year, this time for the 2014 Young Farmers and Ranchers Award of Merit, was the Tangipahoa Parish Young Farmers and Ranchers Committee for their work in promoting agriculture to young producers. Amelia Levin Kent accepted the award on behalf of Tangipahoa. The award was presented by Melissa Morris, chair of the state YF&R Committee and Farm Bureau President Ronnie Anderson.
The Farm Bureau also recognized its Ag in the Classroom Teacher of the Year for 2014. This year's winner was Catherine Olinde, a fourth grade teacher at Valverda Elementary in Maringouin, in Pointe Coupee Parish.
The Louisiana Farm Bureau is the state's largest general farm organization. Founded in 1922, the Farm Bureau provides legislative, commodity, public relations and marketing resources to the state's farmers and ranchers.

LFBARN affiliate KMAR, Winnsboro, was named "Radio Station of the Year" during the Farm Bureau Convention. KMAR General Manager Rene Johnson accepted the award with yours truly, Franklin Parish Farm Bureau President Adam Faulk and LA Farm Bureau President Ronnie Anderson.

Dr. Craig Gautreaux, Communications Specialist and Video Producer for the LSU AgCenter, received the Regnal Wallace Ag Communicator of the Year Award for 2014. 




Friday's Closing   Market Prices


Nov  Soybeans                  1244.4 up 15.2

Oct Cotton                         7412 down 78

North & South

   Delta Cotton                   7830 up 18

Sept  Corn                         439 up 3.2

Sept Rice                           1346 down 21.5

Sept  Wheat                       584.6 up .4

#16 Sugar Sept                  2608 up 3

June  Live Cattle                153-80 up 185
Aug  Feeder Cattle             215-12.5 up $3.00

Don Molino & Neil Melancon 

Please contact us with any questions or feedback regarding information you would like to receive in this e-letter. 


Don Molino

Senior Farm Broadcaster


(225) 291-2727, ext. 210