Happy New Year,

I hope you're all finding some time for rest and rejuvenation this January and that you're on your way to the PFI annual conference right now! I hope to see many of you there. I'll be facilitating the small grains sessions so come say hi!

If you haven't gotten your application in, I'm still accepting request surveys with acres and field descriptions to get on the wait list for 2019 cost share. This week four farmers from the wait list got contracts so if you're on the fence — put in an application. To submit acres to be placed on the wait list for cost share use this link.

Happy Trails,
NEW Market & Cost Share Opportunity for Oat Growers Near St. Ansgar, IA
The oat milk company Oatly, Grain Millers and Practical Farmers are launching a new program to source US grown oats in 2019 from farmers using cover crops and extended rotation best practices. Participating farmers would receive forward contracts on their oats and cost share through PFI at $25/acre. Farmers are required to frost seed a clover or other legume cover crop into their oats or apply for a livestock exception to plant a diverse summer mix if livestock will graze the field. Oats must be produced conventionally and first-time oat growers are preferred.

For more information about the program check out this informational sheet and if you're interested in participating contact alisha@practicalfarmers.org or Beth.Stebbins@grainmillers.com to talk through program requirements and eligibility.
Feb 1 Call on Effectively Using Variety Trial Information to Select Oats
Variety trial data can be difficult to parse into a decision on what oat to plant this year. Melanie Caffe-Treml is an assistant professor and oat breeder at South Dakota State University. She will speak on our February call from noon - 1 p.m. on Friday, February 1 about how to interpret variety trial results to select a top-performing variety in your area and how to parse the 2018 results in a historically bad year for small grains. We'll also preview an exciting new project that PFI is undertaking with several universities to make variety trial results for oats and other small grains more actionable.

This call will be held from noon to 1 pm on Friday, February 1st. To join dial 641-715-3620 and enter passcode 357330# when prompted.
Blog Online from Call on Corn and Soy Seed for Extended Rotations
Adding a year of small grains changes the entire rotation, offering opportunities to reduce input costs in the corn and soybean years of the rotation. Our shared learning call on January 4 covered seed selection of corn and soybeans for an extended rotation. Jake Hansen, Sales Agronomist with Albert Lea Seed, talked through some options with shorter season, insect resistant traits and herbicide tolerant traits in seed purchasing that are possible with an extended rotation that includes cover crops.

You can read the entire blog on our website. Our discussion on this call was particularly broad covering a lot of topics so you might also want to check out the call notes.
Conference: PFI Annual Conference
January 17-19, 2019 | Sheman Building, 1805 Center Dr., Ames, IA

January 18-19, 2019 | Olympia, WA

Shared Learning Call: Oat Variety Trial Results and Selection
February 1, 2019 Noon - 1 p.m. | 641-715-3620, passcode 357330#

February 13-14, 2019 | I Hotel And Conference Center, 1900 S 1st St., Champaign, IL
Spring Small Grain Variety Selection
Unsure which small grain is right for you? Here are some resources:
January is the time to secure contracts for your next year's small grains. This requires a bit of leg work since many buyers don't list their bid prices online. Here are some resources we've produced to help navigate the process of scoping out markets for your small grains:
Looking for more? Contact us today!
Alisha Bower
Strategic Initiatives Manager
(515) 232-5661
Sarah Carlson
Strategic Initiatives Director
(515) 232-5661