October 14, 2020 | News from the Alabama Farmers Federation
Federation Launches Weekly Podcast
The Alabama Farmers Federation launched its weekly podcast, the Alabama AgCast, Oct. 7. New episodes are available each Wednesday and are roughly 15 minutes.

Led by the Governmental & Agricultural Programs Department staff, podcast conversations will cover a range of news and issues affecting Alabama farmers and forest landowners.

Commodity Corner
Enjoy updates from Alabama Farmers Federation commodity directors Carla Hornady, Russ Durrance, Jacob Davis, Brady Ragland, William Green and Hunter McBrayer.
Alabama Fruit & Vegetable Growers Association 
To provide educational resources to farmers following cancellation of the 2020 AFVGA Conference and Trade Show, session recordings will be available online throughout November. For more information, visit afvga.org or follow AFVGA on Facebook.

As the 2020-2021 deer season opens, there's a change impacting hunters. If a hunter transfers possession of a harvested deer or turkey to any other person (taxidermist or deer processor), written documentation of the date, GameCheck confirmation number and the hunter’s conservation ID number must accompany the animal. The chain of custody for this “certificate” ends with the finished product – whether processed meat or mount. For more information, visit outdooralabama.com.

Extreme rainfall and lack of sunshine during early September delayed peanut harvest in many areas. Clear skies and warm days are helping producers get in fields. Good news for peanut farmers: U.S. peanut consumption per capita hit a record high of 7.6 pounds in 2020!

To help poultry producers prepare for cold weather, the National Poultry Technology Center is holding a webinar Nov. 4. The brief webinar will cover heaters, vents and fans. Click here to register.
Cotton, Wheat & Feed Grain, Soybean
Alabama corn production is forecast at 54 million bushels, up 20% from 2019. Cotton production is forecast at 890 million bales, down 13% from last year. Soybean production is forecast at 11.3 million bushels, up 20% from 2019.
Beef, Dairy, Meat Goat & Sheep, Pork
The Alabama Farmers Federation commodity divisions and Alfa Insurance sponsored livestock shows during the Alabama National Fair in Montgomery starting Oct. 9. Shows will continue through the Oct. 18 Alfa Jackpot Show.
Coronavirus Aid Applications Still Open
Farmers can still apply for federal and state funds to help in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

A second round of Coronavirus Food Assistance Program (CFAP 2) aid is available. Applications close Dec. 11 and will support support row crops, livestock, specialty crops, dairy, poultry, aquaculture and additional commodities.

On the state level, applications are still open for the following programs:
Recovery Assistance Available After Hurricane
Hurricane Sally made landfall near Gulf Shores as a Category 2 storm Sept. 16 with maximum sustained winds of 105 mph. Heavy rains and high winds damaged crops, structures and equipment from Mobile County in the southwest through Russell County in the east.

The Alabama Farmers Federation reminds farmers and landowners a number of U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs are available to assist with recovery activities such as debris removal, erosion control and forest health. 

U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue met with south Alabama farmers in Loxley Sept. 21 to see the devastation firsthand and note how USDA can better assist farmers.

Additionally, the Alabama Farmers Agriculture Foundation established a relief fund to help farmers whose farms were damaged by the Category 2 storm. Donations, such as a $25,000 gift from Alabama Ag Credit (pictured below), will go toward farmer losses not covered by a farmowner policy, crop insurance or disaster relief programs.

Donations are tax deductible and may be made at AlabamaFarmersFoundation.org. Additionally, apply for assistance at AlabamaFarmersFoundation.org.
Election Day Is Nov. 3
Before heading to the polls Nov. 3, check out and share this sample ballot, courtesy of FarmPAC.

To access other election information, including to apply for an absentee ballot, click here.
Two Irrigation Cost-Shares Open
A second sign-up for farmers in the Middle Tennessee Watershed is open for cost-share funding for installing new agricultural irrigation systems. The watershed is located in all or parts of Jackson, Lauderdale, Limestone, Madison, Marshall and Morgan counties.

Farmers in the Choctawhatchee Pea Watershed can also apply for cost-share. The watershed is located in all or parts of Barbour, Bullock, Coffee, Covington, Dale, Geneva, Henry, Houston and Pike counties

Interested producers should contact their local Soil & Water Conservation District or NRCS office to apply. 

Questions? Contact Brian Hardin at bhardin@alfafarmers.org.
Leaders Keep Learning
A.L.F.A. Leaders Start Strong

They learned about:
  • Federation history & structure
  • Policy development
  • Meeting etiquette
  • Elevator speeches & communication

They also set goals for a capstone project, which they will finesse over the next two years.
New County Presidents Prepare
New presidents of county Farmers Federations met in Montgomery Oct. 13-14 to gain knowledge and understanding of Federation structure, which will help them lead at the county level.

They met with Federation staff and toured the home office. From left are Dean Wysner, Randolph County; Lynn Harrison, Chilton County; Stewart Koon, Pickens County; and Toni Flowers, Montgomery County.
Researchers Work To Help Farmers
This series from Alabama Agricultural Experiment Station Director Greg Pate highlights practical research benefiting farmers at regional units.
Located near Clanton, the Chilton County Research Center is home to vegetable and fruit research, specifically concentrating on peaches. In 2010, research also began on grapes. Project goals are to:
  • Determine feasibility of growing V. vinifera grapes in the Southeast
  • Evaluate best hybrids
  • Develop best management practices for commercial production
  • Mitigate spread of disease and pests
  • Create new markets for farmers
  • Contribute to the Sweet Grown Alabama movement
October Is Beef Month
October is Beef Month (and has been since 1964) — which means it's the perfect month to add a few great beef recipes to your recipe box.

And share your love of beef production with others this month through these Virtual Field Trip shorts featuring Taber and Grace Ellis.
In Case You Missed It
In Memory
Barton Willoughby of Gordon died Sept. 22. He was 70. Willoughby was a Houston County Farmers Federation board member. Click here to read more about his legacy.

Billy Joe Johnson of Piedmont died Sept. 25. He was 66. Johnson was a past president of the Alabama TREASURE Forest Association and served on the Alabama Farmers Federation State Forestry Committee. Click here to read more about his legacy.