TFB Highlights Successes In Year Of Agricultural Hardships
Texas farmers and ranchers battled the hardships of drought, inflation and high input costs but still led the state’s largest general farm organization to many successes this year, according to Texas Farm Bureau President Russell Boening.
Boening, a full-time farmer and rancher from Wilson County, highlighted several of TFB’s 2022 accomplishments during his annual address to about 1,000 farmers and ranchers gathered in Waco at the organization’s 89th Annual Meeting.
“We persisted and promoted Farm Bureau policy goals in Austin, Washington, D.C., and in the courts. We never stopped fighting,” Boening said. “I use the word ‘we’ when I talk about Farm Bureau. We must focus on our mission. We must focus on what we are about, and we are about being the Voice of Texas Agriculture.”
Boening grows feed grains, cotton and wheat, as well as operates a dairy and a beef cattle operation with his brother and father near Floresville. The fourth-generation farmer was first elected president of Texas Farm Bureau and Affiliated Companies in December 2014.
Boening thanked county Farm Bureaus and leaders for helping TFB achieve its 22nd consecutive year of membership growth. TFB completed the membership year with 538,064 member-families.
He said TFB has been actively advocating that the current safety next for U.S. agriculture must be strengthened.
TFB is promoting the American Farm Bureau Federation’s four overarching priorities for the 2023 Farm Bill, Boening noted. The priorities are maintaining a robust Farm Bill, maintaining a unified Farm Bill that includes nutrition programs and farm programs together, prioritizing risk management tools that include federal crop insurance and commodity programs, and ensuring adequate USDA staffing and resources to provide technical assistance.
He said farmers and ranchers helped elect members of Congress in November who will support Farm Bureau’s Farm Bill positions.
“I am proud that Texas Farm Bureau stands apart. We believe in dialogue and conversation, rather than anger and controversy,” Boening said. “We have to be smart as a community of farmers and ranchers. We must have a sense of purpose.”
For more information about TFB’s 89th annual meeting, visit texasfarmbureau.org/annualmeeting.
Wildlife Specialist Joins Texas A&M AgriLife Service
Jacob Dykes, Ph.D., was recently hired as the new statewide wildlife specialist for Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service and assistant professor in the Department of Rangeland, Wildlife and Fisheries Management in the Texas A&M College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
Dykes, based at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center in Corpus Christi, said his focus will be on white-tailed deer and other big game species, including exotic animals.
“Texas A&M AgriLife hasn’t been very involved with big game across the state, including one of the most popular game species in the nation — white-tailed deer,” he said.
“There are so many questions and such a high demand for science-based information related to their behavior and habitat from a spectrum of stakeholders, including landowners, conservationists and hunters in the various ecoregions of the state.”
Listening to questions and concerns from stakeholders will help direct research, Dykes said, and he has plans to communicate with the public. He hopes to provide a steady stream of information, tips and data related to Texas big game and wildlife improvement opportunities through multiple social media accounts, including Instagram (agrilife.wildlife) and a blog.
LSU AgCenter Names Key Director Positions
The LSU AgCenter has named two well-established leaders to research and Extension positions.
Michael Salassi will serve as interim executive associate vice president and director of the Louisiana Agricultural Experiment Station and Tara Smith as interim executive associate vice president and director of the Louisiana Cooperative Extension Service.
In these positions, Salassi and Smith will support the statewide efforts of research and Extension.
Matt Lee, interim vice president for agriculture, said he is working to expand opportunities for research and Extension opportunities with federal agencies and industry partners.
“This change to the AgCenter’s administrative structure will allow for a more comprehensive approach to advance the state’s research and Extension initiatives to the next level and allow us to be laser-focused on providing stakeholders with resources that improve lives,” he said.
Deltapine Launches Class Of ‘23 Cotton Varieties
The Deltapine brand Class of ’23 cotton varieties showcase the move to bring to market high-performing genetics in the newest biotech trait platform — Bollgard 3 ThryvOn Cotton with XtendFlex Technology.
Announced at the annual Deltapine New Product Evaluator (NPE) Summit, the Deltapine Class of ’23 features two new Bollgard 3 ThryvOn Cotton with XtendFlex Technology varieties along with three new Bollgard 3 XtendFlex cotton varieties.
The Deltapine Class of ’23 also represents a strong native trait package, including a new Bollgard 3 XtendFlex cotton variety with resistance to root-knot nematode and bacterial blight. Four of the new cotton varieties demonstrate resistance to bacterial blight, and all five show moderate tolerance to Verticillium wilt.
“The Deltapine Class of ’23 cotton varieties mark another step forward for the entire cotton industry, both from a new trait platform standpoint and in our continuing efforts to raise the bar on yield and fiber quality expectations in Bollgard 3 XtendFlex cotton varieties offered by the Deltapine brand,” said Eric Best, Deltapine cotton product manager.
The Deltapine Class of ’23 cotton varieties are:
→ DP 2333 B3XF (tested in NPE as 20R733B3XF) is an impressive mid-maturity Bollgard 3 XtendFlex cotton variety for the Mid-South, Southeast and South Texas markets that showed resistance to bacterial blight and outstanding yield potential in NPE plots. This new cotton variety also showed excellent fiber quality potential and delivered farm-record yield averages for several NPE growers.
→ DP 2328 B3TXF (tested in NPE as 21R4132B3TXF) is a mid-maturity Bollgard 3 ThryvOn Cotton with XtendFlex Technology variety fitting the Mid-South, Southeast, and Upper Gulf Coast and Brazos Bottom regions of Texas, offering moderate resistance to bacterial blight.
→ DP 2317 B3TXF (tested in NPE as 21R4127B3TXF) is an early maturity Bollgard 3 ThryvOn Cotton with XtendFlex Technology variety for the Mid-South and Texas markets, offering outstanding fiber quality potential and resistance to bacterial blight.
→ DP 2335 B3XF (tested in NPE as 21R635B3XF) is a mid-maturity Bollgard 3 XtendFlex cotton variety for West Texas markets with resistance to bacterial blight and moderate tolerance to Verticillium wilt.
→ DP 2349NR B3XF (tested in NPE as 21R649NRB3XF) is a mid-to-full-maturity Bollgard 3 XtendFlex cotton variety for the Southeast, offering resistance to both root-knot nematodes and bacterial blight.