Texas Sorghum Insider

August 13, 2014

DuPont & Advanta US Partner on Sorghum Trait – A joint agreement has been signed by DuPont Crop Protection and Advanta US to commercialize the DuPont Inzen Z herbicide-tolerance sorghum trait. This advancement in sorghum genetics will give growers greater ability to control yield-limiting grass weeds in grain sorghum including foxtail, barnyardgrass, crabgrass, and Texas panicum. DuPont’s North America Regional Director, James Hay, said that annual grass weeds reduce U.S. sorghum yield by approximately 20 percent. Advanta will be adding the trait to their premium Alta Seeds hybrids, stated Steve Ligon, managing director for Advanta US. The new trait will not hurt exports as the sorghum will still be non-GMO. The herbicide offered for this tolerant trait will be DuPont Zest; however, it is still under development and is not registered with EPA yet.

HPWD Approves Amended Plan – The High Plains Underground Water Conservation District No. 1  (HPWD) board of directors unanimously passed water conservation rules and a 10-year amended Management Plan outlining locally controlled goals and activities of the district. Under the changes, producers will be required to limit water consumption to 18 inches per acre annually. If growers voluntary opt to limit their production to a single crop, they will not be required to track their use. To track their water consumption, growers have a variety of options such as reporting energy consumption, meter readings, or by tracking systems on irrigation systems. The changes will go into effect on Jan. 1. Over the past 18-months, HPWD received various input from water users and held two public hearings in their district. The district covers 16-counties in the High Plains. Visit www.hpwd.com to see the complete rules document and the amended plan.

USDA WASDE – USDA released their current WASDE report on August 12, 2014. The report forecasted sorghum production at 19 million bushels higher this month to total 429 million bushels, with the forecast yield at 67.1, higher than last months projection by 3.0 bushels. Sorghum supplies for 2014/15 are projected 5 million bushels higher to total 455 million bushels as a 15-million-bushel increase in 2013/14 exports lowers 2014/15 beginning stocks. The projected sorghum exports for 2014/15 are raised 10 million bushels to total 190 million bushels. The current marketing year will end on Aug. 31, 2014. As of Aug. 1, China has committed to a total of 171 million bushels of U.S. grain sorghum for the current marketing year, representing 89 percent of U.S. sorghum exports. The new marketing year, beginning on Sept. 1 already has total commitments of 38.1 million bushels, and from that, China has committed to 28.8 million bushels. The average farm price for sorghum is projected from $3.30 to $4.00 per bushel, 10 cents lower on both ends from July.

TAWC Field Day – The Texas Alliance for Water Conservation (TAWC) will hold its 9th Annual Summer Field Day on Thursday, August 14, 2014 from 8:00am to 2:00pm at the Floyd County Unity Center in Muncy. The event is free of charge, lunch will be included, and CEU’s will be available. Topics will range from water planning and crop outlooks to a demonstration of how to use a Farm Bill Decision Aid. Participants will also travel to the field to learn about the technology growers in the project are implementing and how they can maximize  water efficiency on your field. The program will conclude with a keynote address from Bech Bruun of the Texas Water Development Board. TAWC is a partnership of area producers, data collection technologies, and collaborating partners that include industries, universities, and government agencies. The project is composed of more than 20 producers and is over 6,000 acres across eight counties in the High Plains. For more info, visit www.depts.ttu.edu/tawc.

Kubecka Re-elected to USGC Board – The U.S. Grains Council held its Annual Board of Delegates meeting in Nebraska at the end of July to review global grain marketing strategies and elect a new board of directors. Ron Gray, a farmer from Illinois, was elected as the USGC chairman for 2014-15 and Bill Kubecka, a farmer from Palacious, Texas and a current Sorghum Checkoff board member, will stay on as the Sorghum Sector Director. TGSB works closely with USCG to sustain and increase international sorghum exports.