Grain News & Updat es
Taiwan Imports Most U.S. Corn in Seven Years, Pledges More During Goodwill Mission
The U.S. Grains Council and Chip Councell hosted a Taiwanese Trade team at the Councell's farms in Cordova, MD last week. Chip spoke to them about the pride his family has in their farms, showed the equipment and technology used to plant and harvest corn, and demonstrated how he estimates yield and tests moisture. Following the visit, the members of the trade team pledged to purchase 197 million bu. of U.S. corn and 500,000 tons of U.S. dried distillers grains with solubles (DDGS) between 2018 and 2019, echoing a rebound in U.S. corn sales to this long-term trading partner.

FY18 Mathias Ag Program Now Open 
The Maryland Energy Administration (MEA) is pleased to announce the launch of the FY2018 Kathleen A. P. Mathias Agriculture Energy Efficiency Program to support cost effective energy efficiency measures in the agriculture sector. Farms and businesses in the agriculture sector may apply. Examples include, but are not limited to, dairy, orchard, poultry/egg, greenhouse, vegetable, animal, vineyard, grain dryer, processor, sawmill, and aquaculture. To be eligible, you will need to implement a project costing at least $20,000 that saves money through the installation of energy efficiency measures. You must detail your proposed efforts to maximize energy efficiency on a farm or in an agriculture-related business. Applications are due Friday, September 29, 2017. 

UMD Ag & Environmental Law Conference
Registration is now open for the 2017 Agriculture and Environmental Law Conference, taking place on November 17 at the DoubleTree Hotel in Annapolis. Discussion topics will include: “Hot Legal Issues in Agriculture”, “Legal Resources for Improving Soil Health”, “Antibiotics and Livestock, Conservation and the 2018 Farm Bill”, and “Organics: Certified, Transitional, Livestock, Oh My!”. Nutrient Management Continuing Learning Education Credit is available. Registration for the conference is $40 and access to all program sessions, downloadable conference materials, continental breakfast, and lunch.

Increase Funding for the MAP & FMD Programs
The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Market Access Program (MAP) and Foreign Market Development (FMD) program are critical tools for promoting agricultural exports, including corn and corn products around the world. MAP and FMD are effective public-private partnerships, delivering $28 for every $1 invested, but funding levels have been stagnant in recent years and increase demand has stretched funding thin. Please tell your representative and senators to increase funding for the MAP and FMD programs in the 2018 Farm Bill.

"Blue Tongue" Found in Deer on the Eastern Shore
Epizootic Hemorrhagic Disease ( EHD ) virus, commonly referred to as "blue tongue" has been confirmed in White-tailed deer on the Eastern Shore. Deceased deer have been found in Queen Anne's, Talbot, Caroline and Dorchester Counties. Many of the deer have been found in fields, therefore posing a threat to equipment during harvest. Please be aware that there may be deceased deer in your corn fields as you harvest.

If you find a deceased deer or one that appears sick, please contact Maryland DNR Wildlife Response at 1-877-463-6497 so they can record the cases and do any necessary testing.
Soil Health Champions Network
The National Association of Conservation Districts created the Soil Health Champions Network in 2015 to promote soil health education and outreach among American farmers, ranchers, and forestland owners. Today, the Network is comprised of more than 170 landowners and operators nationwide who are implementing conservation practices on their land and championing the benefits of soil health within their communities. Soil Health Champions have working relationships with their local conservation districts and USDA service centers, and are often community leaders and early adopters of conservation practices. 

NCGA William C. Berg Academic Excellence in Agriculture Scholarship
The National Corn Growers Association and BASF Corporation will award five $1,000 scholarships to undergraduate and graduate students pursuing a degree in an agriculture-related field. Scholarship recipients will be selected in early 2018. Recipients and a parent or guardian will enjoy travel and lodging to attend the 2018 Commodity Classic in Anaheim, California to be recognized at the NCGA Banquet and have the opportunity to learn more about modern agriculture. Applications must be postmarked by December 1, 2017.