Harvest kicks off with a Sonny perspective

In September, Central Missouri Agri Service (CMAS) held its traditional har­vest kickoff in Marshall, Mo., with a special guest, formerSonnyPerdue CMASCMAS General Manager John Fletcher, right, introduced area farmers to Sonny Perdue before the former Secretary of Agriculture took the stage. Secretary of Agri­culture Sonny Perdue, addressing the crowd. CMAS general manager John Fletcher said the spirit of the event is to get the farming community face-to-face for an opportunity to meet vendors, talk about the upcoming harvest and enjoy a good meal. “And this year, we included a fun speaker,” said Fletcher. “I got to know Sonny back in the ’80s when we were both on the National Grain and Feed Association board. And we’ve stayed in touch. It’s good to hear from some­one who brings a wide perspective.”

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MU’s Center for Regenerative Agriculture offers new web resources

In August, the University of Missouri’s Center for Regenerative Agriculture introduced a new website that offers a comprehensive toolbox of practices to increase soil health, protect water quality and enhance conservation approaches on farms.

The center, operated by MU’s College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources, is the first of its kind in the Midwest. It was formed earlier this year to foster faculty and student collaboration and create a focal point for research in areas such as soil health and biodiversity, conservation practices and overall sustainability and profitability on working farms and ranches.

The goal of the center’s new website is to allow farmers, landowners, farm advisors and even consumers to access a wide range of information on regenerative agriculture prac­tices and concepts, according to Rob Myers, adjunct associ­ate professor in MU’s Division of Plant Sciences and faculty director for the center.

“We’ve included guidance on getting started with regener­ative approaches and organized over 100 resources in terms of publications and videos that provide additional insights on these topics,” Myers said.

The Missouri Department of Conservation provided initial funding for the center to look at how conservation approach­es work together to create diverse farming landscapes and provide both economic and environmental impacts for land­owners. For example, the center is currently collaborating on a $10 million proposal to study cover crops for farmers.

Adam Jones, MFA Incorporated’s natural resources conser­vation specialist, serves on the center’s advisory committee as its agribusiness representative. That 13-member committee also includes farmers, faculty, government agency and com­modity organization leaders.

“In planning the center, we gathered input from a variety of groups, including Missouri producers, some of whom will remain involved with the center on an advisory committee,” Myers said. “We have nearly 20 faculty at the University of Missouri who have expressed interest in participating with this new center, and I expect the number of internal and external partners to expand as activities get underway.”

For more information, visit the Center for Regenerative Agriculture online at cra.missouri.edu.

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Bayer removes residential Roundup

RoundupConsumers who have relied on glyphosate for weed control in their lawns and gardens may no longer have that option a little over a year from now.

In July, Bayer officials announced the company is removing any of its products containing glyphosate, including Roundup, from the U.S. residential marketplace, effective as early as January 2023. There will be no change in the availability of its glypho­sate formulations for agriculture and other professional markets, according to Bayer.

The company says it will replace glyphosate in the lawn and garden marketplace with new formulations that rely on alternative active ingredients. Bayer may still sell these products under the Roundup brand.

In a press release, Bayer explained that the move is being made to manage litigation risk and not because of any safety concerns or admission of liability. Bayer, which bought Roundup’s parent company, Monsanto, in 2018, has been plagued by lawsuits alleg­ing that glyphosate causes non-Hodgkins lymphoma. More than 90% of the claims came from users in the lawn and garden market.

While Bayer continues to dispute those allegations and cites conflicting scientific reports, the company recently released a five-point plan to close the Round­up litigation. The removal of glypho­sate from the lawn and garden market is among the pack­age of legal and commercial actions Bayer will take to address potential future lawsuits.

The company also intends to set up a new website with scientific stud­ies relevant to Roundup’s safety that will provide even more transparency to purchasers about the products they use. That website is expected to be launched by the end of 2021.

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