Monthly Newsletter for Georgia Agribusiness Council Members
July 2022
AgOutlook is the monthly online publication of the Georgia Agribusiness Council. For information about what is going on within the GAC as well as updates on agribusiness topics of interests, read below. As always, please feel free to contact the GAC staff at any time. Contact information can be found at www.ga-agribusiness.org.
GAC STAFF DISCUSSES AG ISSUES WITH U.S. SENATOR OSSOFF IN NORTH GEORGIA
GAC's Will Bentley and Jake Tench partnered with the Georgia Poultry Federation and other agriculture leaders in North Georgia to host Senator Jon Ossoff in Gainsville at the Georgia Poultry Lab to discuss issues facing several sectors of agribusiness in the state.

Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black was on hand to provide insight to the group of ag leaders as well. Senator Ossoff took notes as issues such as workforce development, trade, transportation, over regulation, migrant workers, processing capacity, and others were discussed. We thank the Senator and his staff for spending time learning about ways to improve and protect Georgia's largest industry.
UGA TURFGRASS RESEARCH FIELD DAY IS BACK!
Whether you're a golf course superintendent, a homeowner who wants the perfect lawn, or anyone in between, there'll be something for you.

Come and get the latest information on how to care for your lawn or your golf course from UGA researchers and extension specialists. Field day includes such topics as controlling turf insects like mole crickets and white grubs and turf pests like crabgrass and other turf weeds.

There is always an excellent BBQ lunch followed by displays and demonstrations of the latest turfgrass industry equipment.

While you're enjoying learning about what's new in turfgrass, don't forget to sign up for your CEU's! We have applied for credits from GA, AL, FL, TN, NC, SC. For more information Click Here.
Join us as we celebrate and support the GAC Foundation at the 47th annual Harvest Celebration at our NEW LOCATION! 

 Location: Classic Center • Athens, GA
 Date: Friday, November 18
 Schedule: Silent Auction & Field of Dreams Reception, 5:30pm • Dinner, 7:30pm • Entertainment, 9:00pm
Dress: Cocktail Attire

Host Hotels: 
Hyatt Place • 706/425-1800 • Book Here
 To receive the group discount, use code “G-HRV2”
Hilton Garden Inn • 706/353-6800 • Book Here


For more information or question please call the GAC office at 706/336-6830 or email Maggie Wooten
HOUSE AG APPROPS PASSES FY '23 AGRICULTURE APPROPRIATIONS BILL
The House Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee on Thursday approved the fiscal year 2023 Agriculture appropriations bill. The vote was by voice, although several Republican dissents could be heard. For 2023, the bill provides funding of $27.2 billion – an increase of $2.075 billion, 8% – above 2022. In total, the bill includes $195 billion for both discretionary programs funded on an annual basis and mandatory programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP).
 
There are 134 earmarked projects at a total cost of $192 million. One of those earmarks was $5 million for USDA to test soil, water and agricultural products for PFAS chemicals and to help with farmers' cleanup costs. 
 
The Food and Drug Administration, which also would be funded through the bill, would get $3.6 billion, an increase of $341 million over FY22, including $77 million more for food safety.
THOMPSON LEADS HOUSE GOP TO INTRODUCE BILL TO CUT FARM REGULATION
Rep. Glenn “GT” Thompson (R-PA), ranking member on the House Agriculture Committee, led a group of Republicans in introducing H.R. 8069, the Reducing Farm Input Costs and Barriers to Domestic Production Act. A bill he said “requires the Biden administration to reverse its regulatory barriers to domestic agriculture production and provide immediate relief to families across the country.”
 
Thompson and others wrote President Biden earlier this week urging him to take some of the actions in the bill, which includes providing relief from EPA’s unprecedented actions related to crop protection tools; offering clarity related to WOTUS regulations; rescinding the SEC’s harmful proposed rule on climate-related disclosures; reinstating the 2020 NEPA streamlining; and requiring an economic analysis on the costs and benefits of GIPSA rules.
THE FERTILIZER INSTITUTE LAUDS CONGRESSIONAL LEADERSHIP ON RAIL SERVICE ISSUES
ARLINGTON, VA – The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) President and CEO Corey Rosenbusch today praised the bipartisan leadership of Congressmen Ralph Norman (R-SC-5) and Jim Costa (D-CA-16) for organizing a letter to the Surface Transportation Board (STB) regarding poor rail service and the negative impact it is having on the fertilizer industry and the overall agricultural sector.
 
“With over half of all fertilizer moving by rail, we are grateful for the leadership of Congressmen Norman and Costa in bringing the issue of inconsistent rail service to the attention of the STB,” Rosenbusch said. “Their dedication to working with all stakeholders will help ensure that essential crop nutrient inputs reach farmers when and where they need them.”
 
Fertilizer shipments rely heavily on rail to reach farmers, but imposed restrictions, along with skeleton crews and railroad-led initiatives such as precision-scheduled railroading (PSR), have forced fertilizer shipping reductions and potential production delays.
 
“Fertilizer is attributable to half of all crop yields,” Rosenbusch continued. “With the world leaning on U.S. farmers now more than ever before to feed our growing population, we must ensure strong yields and our food security. Fertilizer must reach farmers in a timely manner and crop harvests also need to get to their destinations, including the kitchen table.”
 
The Congressional letter to the STB was signed by 51 members of Congress and can be read in full here.
BIDEN SIGNS OCEAN SHIPPING REFORM BILL
It’s been about a year since Rep. Dusty Johnson (R-SD) and John Garamendi (D-CA) first introduced their Ocean Shipping and Reform Act to help alleviate bottlenecks at U.S. ports and, in a signing ceremony on Thursday, President Joe Biden finally signed it into law. 
 
“This bill will make progress reducing costs for families and ensuring fair treatment for American businesses—including farmers and ranchers,” Biden said in a statement released soon after the House approved the bill Monday with a 369 to 42 vote. 
 
The bill “couldn’t have come at a more needed time for the United States and the world as changes from the Ocean Shipping Reform Act will enable more U.S. agricultural products to reach the global marketplace,” said National Association of State Departments of Agriculture CEO Ted McKinney.
 
U.S. ag is expected to be one of the sectors that gains the most from bill, so leaders of some of the biggest ag groups were invited to the White House on Thursday. They include Cathy Burns, CEO of the International Fresh Produce Association; Dave Puglia, president and CEO of Western Growers; Michael Dykes, President and CEO of the International Dairy Foods Association; and Jim Mulhern, President and CEO of the National Milk Producers Federation.
AgGeorgia Farm Credit Announces Additional 2022 Distribution of $9.4 Million to Borrowers
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE:
Perry, Ga. (June 13, 2022) – AgGeorgia Farm Credit is pleased to announce a second distribution of the year to borrowers of the cooperative. $9,419,433 million is being paid to members who held loans with AgGeorgia in 2014, with checks expected to be delivered by the last week of June. This comes after AgGeorgia’s board already declared a cash dividend of over $13 million in April to borrowers who had loans in 2021. The upcoming distribution brings the total paid to member-owners this year to $22,487,515.

“Given soaring input costs, it is a great feeling to know we have helped our members’ cash flows considerably by paying out over $22 million in 2022,” said Jack Bentley, Chairman of AgGeorgia’s Board of Directors.

The June payout consists of surplus revolvement from AgGeorgia’s 2014 Patronage Refunds. Surplus portions were taxable when declared at that time, so no additional income taxes are due on the disbursement. Members with outstanding surplus earned from 2015-2020 will continue to receive surplus checks over the next several years, subject to annual board approval, while AgGeorgia completes its transition to the all-cash patronage plan. Starting with the 2021 refund, patronage refunds are now paid in all-cash rather than a cash/retained surplus split.

2022 marks the 34th consecutive year the cooperative has returned profits to its borrowers, with over $426 million in cash being paid out since 1988.

About AgGeorgia Farm Credit: AgGeorgia Farm Credit is an agricultural lending cooperative owned by over 5,000 member-borrowers, with a mission to improve the lives of Georgia’s farmers, families and rural communities. AgGeorgia provides farm loans for land, equipment, livestock and production; rural home mortgages, and services such as crop insurance and leasing. AgGeorgia Farm Credit has 19 branches serving 79 counties in Georgia. It is part of the national Farm Credit System, a network of financial cooperatives established in 1916 to provide a dependable source of credit to farmers and rural America. For more information, visit www.aggeorgia.com.
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Contact: Corey Cottle, Chief Marketing Officer (478) 987-8300 x 253 (229) 456-1904 cell ccottle@aggeorgia.co
2022 FIELD DAY TO FEATURE THE LATEST UPDATES IN NEW TECHNOLOGY AND RESEARCH
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE by Sunbelt Expo
The 2022 Sunbelt Ag Expo Field Day is scheduled for July 21, and farmers are invited to join us to learn practical information from the region’s top agricultural scientists about the newest technologies that farmers can use to improve their operations.
The Sunbelt team looks forward to welcoming farmers and professionals in the ag industry to a Driving Tour of the Darrell Williams Research Farm. The half-day event will take place at the 600-acre Darrell Williams Research Farm, located at the Expo show site at Spence Field in Moultrie, Ga. Registration is free for anyone who works in agriculture. Visitors should arrive thru Gate 2 anytime between 8:00 am and 9:00 am to begin the tour. Directional signs will direct those in attendance to a red tent where they will register, receive a welcome bag including snacks, register for CCA credits, and begin the tour. They will never have to step out of their vehicle for this process. Once registered, visitors will then drive-thru the tour path while viewing pre-recorded segments featuring university researchers and company vendors. In addition, farmers can choose to pull aside at stops that particularly spark their interest to further investigate plots and visit one-on-one with the researchers. 
 
“We have the unique ability to work with university and corporate researchers on our Darrell Williams Research Farm, where we continue to conduct cotton, peanut, corn, sorghum and forage research — all aimed at improving the farmer’s bottom line. We look at the latest seed varieties, crop protection methods, soil fertility, irrigation and precision ag technology,” says Chip Blalock, Sunbelt Ag Expo Executive Director. 
 
“Each year, our mission is to provide a place where research can be done to benefit all row crop and forage farmers — especially those who might not have the resources or land to just go out and try a new variety or technology on a hunch,” says Cody Mitchell, Sunbelt Ag Expo Farm Manager. “This year is no different.”
 
“We strive to have the best-looking farm around. We want the Expo farm to showcase what a farm should look like,” he says. “We work hard all year to ensure that we make a lifelong impression on the guests who come to see us during Sunbelt Ag Expo in October. When they visit here, we want it to be an eye-opening experience that’s worth their time.”
 
There are a few tips visitors should keep in mind to enjoy a successful tour. Bring a friend to experience the event with you. Be sure to have a smartphone or tablet with you to view the research videos during the tour. Videos will be accessible using the Official Sunbelt Ag Expo app, web site, or YouTube channel. Connect your device to your vehicle Bluetooth before you arrive. Plan to chat with researchers and vendors at plots that specifically interest you. Prepare to explore and learn on the research farm, all while enjoying your comfortable vehicle!
 
UGA researchers, Extension Specialists, and ag chemical representatives conduct numerous trials at the Sunbelt farm for all major southern agronomic crops. To view more specific Field Day details, download the Sunbelt Ag Expo app or visit www.sunbeltexpo.com.
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HELP FIGHT FOR GEORGIA AGRICULTURE: SUPPORT THE GA AgPAC TODAY
In a policy environment that is rapidly changing, supporting state political leaders that understand and support Agribusiness has never been more important than it is today.

The Georgia Agribusiness Council was created for the purpose of advocating for agricultural interests in the legislative and regulatory arenas. This lofty initiative continues to get harder and harder each election cycle. In our efforts to advance these activities, the Council formed the Georgia AgPAC several years ago that utilizes member's donations to:

* Financially support the campaigns of political candidates who are supportive of agriculture;
* Educating elected officials and key decision makers on issues important to agribusiness;

* Advocacy of issues that advance our industry and rural communities

We ask for your financial support so that we can continue to fight on behalf of Georgia agribusiness interests. Campaign contributions from Georgia AgPAC is restricted to non-federal candidates in races for legislative and statewide offices. Georgia AgPAC needs your contribution to advance this initiative. 

Your corporate or personal commitment will help us prepare today. All donations are welcome. Please call our office at 706-336-6830 or click here to download the donation form to be a partner in this effort. 
STAR SPONSOR TIME - ITS NOT TOO LATE
The 2022 GAC Star Sponsor program registration is now underway and its off to a good start. This program helps with events during the legislative session along with building support for a variety of projects and initiatives that cannot take place without the added participation. Star Sponsors are reflected in each of our newsletters, as posted on this page, along with the weekly legislative reports throughout each session of the Georgia General Assembly, monthly newsletters, and more. Click here for 2022 Star Sponsor registration information and email Jill Hansard or call the GAC office at 706-336-6830. Thank you!
ASMARK INSTITUTE - Safe & Sound Online Training 

The Safe & Sound Online Training Management tool is ideal for organizations seeking a comprehensive training solution that incorporates advanced technologies to help manage their employee training from start to finish, simplifying and streamlining the process.
Ag Technologies dba Vantage Southeast
Brooksco Dairy LLC
Bulloch Gin Inc.
Carroll EMC
DeWitt Produce Co., Inc.
Docia Farms Partnership
Embry Farm Service
Georgia Cotton Commission
Georgia Crop Production Alliance
Georgia Development Authority
Georgia Young Farmers Association
Greg Sikes Farm, LLC
Hattaway Farms Ptr.
International Forest Co., Inc.
Kelley Manufacturing Co.
LG Herndon Jr. Farms Inc.
Leatherbrook Holsteins LLC
Mercier Orchards
Mixon Seed Services Inc.
Mobley Greenhouses Inc.
NG Turf, Inc.
Nut Tree Pecan Nursery
Rural Jobs Coalition
Southern Woods Plantation, Inc.
Striplings General Store
Suttons Mill LLC
Synovus 
The Turfgrass Group, Inc.
TriEst Ag Group, Inc.
USA Poultry & Egg Export Council
WDairy LLC
WHEE
AgSouth Services, Inc.
Barrington Dairy, LLC
Bay Branch Farms, Inc.
BCT Gin Co. Inc.
Boston Gin Co.
Broken Antler Farms
Burriss Law Group, LLC
Circle C Farms Inc.
CLW Harvesting LLC
Coley Gin & Fertilizer Co.
Cotton Partners LLC
Curry Farm Supply Inc.
Deep South Farm Center, LLC
Duvall Livestock Market, LP
Emanuel Peanut & Grain LLC
GA Assoc. of Conservation Districts
GA Assoc. of County Agricultural Agents
Georgia Christmas Tree Association
Georgia Federal-State Inspection Service, Inc.
Georgia Food Bank Association Inc.
Georgia Peach Council
Georgia Pork Producers Association
Georgia Seed Association Inc.
Georgia Vocational Ag Teacher Association
Georgia Women in Agriculture Association Inc.
Hazel Creek Cider, Inc. / Yearwood Farms, Inc.
Hillside Orchard Farms Inc.
Hulsey Farm Services
Israel Farm Supply, Inc.
J & B Irrigation Inc.
KAKEGA LLC
Lenox Peanut Company
Moultrie Colquitt County Development Authority
Northeast Georgia Livestock
Oglethorpe Power Corporation
Omega Farms
P.G.C. Farms
Patrick Family Farms, LLC
Peebles Timber, Inc./ Longleaf LLC / Peebles Land LLLP
Quality Gin, Inc.
RAJ Farms Inc.
Red Clay Ranch Equine Rescue & Sanctuary, Inc
Samara Plantation LLC
Shealy Farms, Inc.
Shiloh Farms
Southeastern Sod, Inc.
Southern AGCOM Inc.
Southern Crop Production Association
Southern Livestock
Southern Seed Company, Inc.
Southern Specialty Equipment
Sweet Corn Co-Op
Tri-County Gin, Inc.
UGA Agricultural Leadership, Education, and Communication
Vidalia Onion Business Council
Wild Ridge LLC
Williams Produce, Inc.

Special thanks to all of our Star Sponsors. Please call our office at 706-336-6830 for details. Thank you!
Other features include:

  • Thirty-one ag-specific topics on DVD, licensed for on-site use
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  • Track results on your personal dashboard
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Click here for more information. This link will take your members directly to our website to learn more about the Safe & Sound Online Training Management tool.
This information is intended for members of the Georgia Agribusiness Council, Inc. No part of this document shall be copied, edited, or redistributed in any form without express written consent from the Georgia Agribusiness Council, Inc.
Georgia Agribusiness Council | 706-336-6830 | WWW.GA-AGRIBUSINESS.ORG