Articles and Information

News and Information About Agriculture

Ryan Hostetler - w APEX Land and Crop Logo - 2023 Regional Broker of the Year - Apex Award - Realtors Land Institute - AGPROfessionals.png

Ryan Hostetler, ALC Recognized as the 2023 RLI APEX Region 6 Broker of the Year in Ag Land Crop Sales

4/22/2024 (Greeley, CO) – Ryan Hostetler, ALC, with AGPROfessionals Real Estate in Greeley, Colorado, has been recognized as the APEX 2023 Region 6 (AZ, CO, NM, UT, WY) Broker of the Year in Ag Land Crop Sales by the REALTORS® Land Institute as a part of the RLI APEX Production Awards Program, sponsored by The Land Report.

“We are incredibly proud of Ryan for his accomplishments in 2023. The Regional Broker of the Year is a new category for the APEX Awards this year. We are proud to honor land professionals like him across RLI’s ten regions who are dedicated to both the industry and their clients. Ryan is truly among the most accomplished professionals in land real estate.”

A Colorado native, Ryan obtained his Colorado real estate license in 1999...

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The Move Toward Regulating Cultivated Cell Food Products - AGPROfessionals - Animal Agriculture Beef Production Dairy.png

There is a movement across the country to ban or highly regulate cell-cultivated food products made in a laboratory. Arizona, Florida, Iowa, Alabama, Tennessee, and Texas are on the front lines of stopping and restricting lab-grown “meats.”

Arizona

The state of Arizona has created two bills to regulate lab-grown foods. The first is HB 2244. HB 2244 would make it illegal to label products not from livestock or poultry as “meat.” On January 22, the Arizona House Committee on Land, Agriculture, and Rural Affairs voted 6-3 in favor of HB 2244. On February 1, the Bill was passed by the House of Representatives. The Senate read HB 2244 on February 20.

In addition to HB 2244, Rep. David Marshal proposed HB 2121. The goal behind this Bill is to prohibit both the sale and production of cell-cultured meat. On February 22, the House passed HB 2121. The Senate read the bill on February 29. The bill passed its third reading in the Arizona Senate on April 4, 2024.

Florida

In the State of Florida, SB 1084 and HB 1071 have been...

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The Food and Drug Administration is requesting $7.2 billion to "strengthen and modernize" the ability to promote nutritious food

Dive Brief:

  • The Food and Drug Administration requested $7.2 billion as part of President Biden’s fiscal 2025 proposed budget to “strengthen and modernize” the agency’s ability to promote a safe and nutritious food supply in the U.S. The request includes an increase of $495 million — 7.4% above the FY 2023 budget.
  • The FDA has come under fire recently as states have passed legislation preventing companies from using food additives like red dye 3 that the agency has approved as safe. Jim Jones, FDA’s first deputy commissioner for human foods, said last week on a...
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Bovine Veterinary Group Names Illness

Bovine Influenza A Virus Recommended as New Name for Recent Illness in Dairy Cows

"The American Association of Bovine Practitioners (AABP) is recommending a new name for the illness that has been making dairy cows sick in several states: Bovine Influenza A Virus (BIAV)."

"While the virus is the same, it has different symptoms in cattle and thus we want to be sure the name reflects this virus in cattle," Gingrich told DTN.

The virus isolated from the affected dairy cows has been identified as avian influenza virus Type A H5N1. While this virus causes high morbidity and mortality in birds, it does not have the same effect on cattle."

"While for now the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, APHIS, and other organizations are still referring to the illness officially as HPAI, AABP said it will refer to the disease as BIAV in all its messaging.

AABP is encouraging other organizations, state animal health officials, diagnostic labs and state and federal agencies to use this name as well. The organization said this will make the...

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HPAI in Dairy Cows - Resources and News for Producers.png

LAST UPDATE: April 19, 2024 - 1:30 PM CST

AGPROfessionals is carefully monitoring information regarding the recent outbreak of HPAI in several dairies. Since this is a developing situation, we felt it would be helpful for producers to have easy access to information in one place.

Therefore, we have put together a list of articles and resources and will update this list as needed.

Information:

  • USDA / APHIS Map and Chart Showing Confirmed Cases - Updated by 4 PM Daily HERE
  • Keep Updated with the Latest Announcements from USDA / APHIS: HERE
  • APHIS FAQ - Detection of Highly Pathogenic Avian Influenza in Dairy Herds: Frequently Asked Questions HERE
  • USDA / APHIS Information HPAI in Cattle:...
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Processing Plants are fighting against a group behind a ballot that will ruin their businesses and livelihoods.

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — Rick Stott grew up on a dairy farm in Montana, but when he looked ahead to the future, agriculture was not a part of it.

“I swore I'd never go into ag,” Stott recalls.

After pursuing a career as a CPA, however, Stott worked his way back to agriculture in a “roundabout way,” and after two decades with Agri Beef, he began working for Superior Farms in 2013, where he now serves as president and CEO. An employee-owned company with 475 people, Superior Farms processes approximately one-third of the lambs in USDA facilities each year, and owns facilities in Dixon, Calif., Blue Island, Ill., Boston, and Denver. It is the latter facility that has inspired Stott’s recent activity on the political scene.

The impetus was “Prohibition of Slaughterhouses,” a citizen-initiative Denver ordinance that would, come Jan. 1, 2026, ban “the construction, maintenance, or use of” any meat processing facilities in Denver. The ordinance, which acquired signatures last year and will appear on the November 2024 ballot, would effectively close Superior Farms’ Denver...

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'Product of USA' label rule will help ensure consumers to trust the process of their food from start to finish was done in America

Article first published on March 16, 2024

The rule, announced last week, stated chicken, beef, pork and other animal protein can only be sold under patriotic packaging if the product was wholly produced in America, from conception to meat counter.

The decision was lauded by the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union (UFCW), whose president, Marc Perrone, lambasted the practice of repackaging meat that originated outside the U.S. as American, as ‘trickery’ and ‘cheating.’ “Now, consumers can shop with confidence, knowing that when they buy products with the USA label, their money will...

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Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack Allows "Product of the USA" label to be put on meat, poultry, and egg products

Article first published on March 12, 2024

This week’s finalization of the voluntary “Product of the USA” label claim is prompting concern from the Canadian government even as U.S. trade groups expressed support for specific changes to the previous policy.

The finalized rule announced this week by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack allows the “Product of USA” or “Made in the USA” label claim to be used on meat, poultry and egg products only when they come from animals born, raised, slaughtered and processed in the United States. The statute no longer allows the use of these types of labels on products from animals that were raised outside of the United States but slaughtered, repackaged, processed or reprocessed in U.S. facilities. It takes effect Jan. 1, 2026, USDA said.

Canada’s Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay and International Trade Minister Mary Ng issued a...

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Animal Rights Activists are finding new ways to be influential on animal agriculture

Article first published on March 8, 2024

Any company involved in the production, processing, and retailing of dairy, meat, poultry, eggs, and seafood has at least one thing in common — the potential to be targeted by animal rights extremist organizations. These groups are opposed to people using animals for any purpose, including for food. Among the many tactics used to advance their goal of eliminating animal agriculture and taking animal products off of our plates, one is of primary concern to any consumer-facing food brand (and those that supply them) — pressure campaigns and pushing for “incremental changes” which they claim are in the name of animal welfare or sustainability.

Legislative efforts have been a mainstay of extremist campaigns, but in recent years animal rights extremists have discovered a quicker way to exert influence on animal agriculture that cuts out the patchwork of state-level regulations on animal care dictated by ballot initiative campaigns. By pressuring restaurant, retail, and foodservice brands to adopt certain policies, these...

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Colorado House Bill 1375

UPDATE: - April 3, 2024

On April 1st, the Colorado General Assembly website listed HB24 - 1375 as "postponed indefinitely",

Editorial About Colorado House Bill 1375 - Another Attack on the Western Slope

Article Excerpts:

"When urban Front Range liberals released wolves on Western Slope farmers and ranchers, they illustrated how 51% of voters can tyrannize the other 49%. In this case, a slim majority brazenly imposed liability on a large minority. Wolves kill livestock, outdoor pets and on rare occasions, children.

Because the wolves certainly will kill livestock and herding animals, the Legislature in 2023 passed Senate Bill 255. It established the half-million-dollar Wolf Depredation Compensation Fund to reimburse “people who suffer damages because of gray wolf depredation.”

"Today, legislators want to gum up the compensation fund with bureaucratic hurdles that will impose costs on farmers and ranchers. Under House Bill 1375, Western Slope residents would qualify for compensation only after...

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A Guide to Understanding Ranching in the West

A Guide to Understanding Ranching in The West

Learning about grazing and water rights on federally managed public lands is essential to understanding some key factors impacting livestock production and the purchase of ranch land in the West. This is particularly essential information if you are considering a property with grazing and water rights as additional assets.

In the early days of the American West, land was settled through various government acts. Along with settlement, the land's natural resources, like grass, water, and minerals, were claimed. Over time, those same rights were sold or passed down through the generations, and the rights remain in place to this day.

Split Estates

These claimed resources are not “public” even though the Federal Government administers them. Instead, they are considered a “split estate.” Split estates were proposed by President Theodore Roosevelt. Split estates occur when separate parties own the rights to the land above ground and minerals rights below the...

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Manure Digesters Add Value to Agriculture and Communities

Manure Digesters Add Value to Agriculture and Communities

Alternate revenue streams in agriculture are becoming increasingly important as farmers and ranchers struggle with rising costs due to inflation and other market conditions. Diversification has become a vital component of the long-term financial viability of many farms. The utilization of manure digesters is emerging as a viable way for farmers to generate additional income and help meet consumer demand for sustainable practices.

What Anaerobic Digesters Do

Farmers can utilize anaerobic digesters as a part of an integrated manure management approach. Methane is created when organic materials such as manure decompose in an oxygen-free environment, like a landfill or lagoon. Anaerobic digesters capture methane, and a renewable source of energy is created called biogas. In addition to creating biogas, anaerobic digestion produces a material called digestate, a nutrient-rich and stable biproduct.

Benefits of Anaerobic Digesters

According to...

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Construction, storm water, erosion, environmental control, construction permit, permitting, stormwater permit,

What Is Stormwater Runoff?

Stormwater runoff is produced by precipitation like snow or rain that falls onto an impervious or partially impervious surface like roofs, driveways, roads, or structures and is not absorbed into the soil. As the runoff flows, it picks up pollutants and sediment along the way that can be transferred into nearby waterways. Stormwater controls help to manage this by filtering and/or preventing pollution by controlling those sources.

Purpose For Construction Stormwater Management

Construction sites pose a higher risk of transporting pollutants into water. The disturbed ground is less stable, increasing the chances of erosion and/or runoff. The construction equipment and materials (i.e., stockpiles, oils/grease, etc.) found on construction sites may release pollutants onto the ground that can then be transported off-site in a potential discharge event.

Construction stormwater management practices help keep the property in compliance with the Clean Water Act and local, state, and federal stormwater...

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EPA - Draft National Strategy for Reducing Food Loss and Waste and Recycling Organics

At AGPROfessionals, our mission is to advocate for our clients. As a part of this, we follow the regulatory landscape and participate when needed. Most recently, we stepped in on the EPA's request to comment on their Draft National Strategy for Reducing Food Loss and Waste and Recycling Organics. All too often, agencies pass regulations without thought to the bigger picture and their ripple effect. In the case of food and organic waste, we asked for consideration to be made to existing roadblocks and the need to open up viable, practical pathways for anaerobic co-digestion and composting.

See our comment below, submitted on February 1st.

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Comments Regarding Draft National Strategy for Reducing Food Loss and Waste and Recycling Organics

Docket Number: EPA-HQ-OLEM-2022-0415

The dairy industry has a long history of seeking solutions to make our products environmentally friendly and sustainable. We applaud the focus on reducing food waste and methane emissions by the United States Department...

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Arizona and Florida Lawmakers Put Forward Bills Regulating Factory Laboratory Food

Arizona and Florida Lawmakers Put Forward Bills Regulating Factory Laboratory Food

Arizona and Florida lawmakers have put forth bills that aim toward the regulation and labeling of cultivated meat on store shelves. Cultivated “meat” is defined as a product that is produced when cells are taken from an animal and put in a bioreactor to replicate.

Making Headway

The proposed bills from both the states of Arizona and Florida are making headway just six months after the USDA Food and Safety Inspection Service notified the public that Upside Food and Good Meat were moving forward after the completion of the pre-market regulatory review process for cultivated meat. Both companies listed have been selling their products in restaurants; however, they have not had their product on grocery store shelves.

Arizona

In the State of Arizona, two bills have been put forward. House Bill 2244 was proposed with the intention of making it an illegal act to put the label “meat” on products that are not from livestock or...

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Anaerobic Co-Digesters a Renewable Solution for Both Farms and Food Waste

Anaerobic Co-DigestionA Renewable Solution for Farms and Food Waste

With the focus on reducing greenhouse gases (GHGs), urban and rural communities across America are looking at their options for managing the waste that is producing methane in our nation’s landfills. According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in their report, “From Farm to Kitchen: The Environmental Impacts of U.S. Food Waste”, the greenhouse gas emissions from food waste and food loss in the United States are significant. The estimation is that decomposing food and plant matter is equal to the output of 42 coal-fired power plants. In the report, the EPA lists food waste as the “single most common material landfilled and incinerated in the United States, comprising 24 and 22 percent of landfilled and combusted municipal solid waste…”.

Anaerobic Co-Digestion for Small and Mid-Sized Dairies

Anaerobic co-digesters utilize food waste, other organic materials, and manure to prevent methane from escaping into the environment and putting it to work....

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Article Posts.jpg

On Wednesday, the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) withdrew their proposal to create a new type of publicly traded corporation called a natural asset company (NAC).

Why does this matter? Under the formerly proposed rule, an NAC would be a corporation that holds the rights to the ecological performance of a specific area of land. These rights would be licensed, much like water rights, mineral rights, etc. An NAC would have to license the rights from a private landowner or sovereign nation (either the U.S. federal government, Tribal government, or foreign nation.) The proposal garnered significant criticism due to its potential to reduce or remove industries like grazing from public lands.

The NYSE's reversal followed several weeks of pushback from congressional Republicans, the livestock industry, Western energy and other multiple-use stakeholders, and private property rights advocacy groups. PLC joined NCBA on comments in opposition to the rule earlier this month. 25 Republican state attorneys argued in a letter to the SEC that the proposal did not...

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Article about Steve Gable and Magnum Feedyard for Pork Business.png

The National Western Stock Show is going on right now, and among the many things it does, it brings people together.

This is a great article about a visit a livestock judging team had with our friends and clients - the Gabel family and Magnum Feedyard LLC. Steve Gabel was one of our first clients more than 20 years ago, and his support helped AGPROfessionals get started.

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Article by Jennifer Shike for Farm Journal's PORK

Encourage the Next Generation to Chase Big Dreams

I instantly felt at ease when I walked into the office of Magnum Feedyard LLC and found myself surrounded by two of my passions: livestock and wrestling. In addition to being well known for their impressive cattle feedyard, the Gabel family is also well known for their love of wrestling.

We were traveling with our 4-H livestock judging team to Denver for the Western National Roundup and had just worked out on three great classes of feedlot cattle. The cattle were awesome, nobody busted a class, and the weather was chilly, but beautiful. As I stood...

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Is it mining in the State of Colorado

Is It Mining?

The Division of Reclamation, Mining and Safety provides a questionnaire to determine if potential projects require a Reclamation Permit. While a simple questionnaire seems helpful, the Mined Land Reclamation (MLR) Board has created policies that do not align with the Colorado Revised Statutes. The “Is it Mining” questionnaire requires the user to answer such questions as whether the mine site operator will receive any compensation and what post-mining land uses will be made of extracted materials.

It requires that you identify yourself as a mine operator to determine whether you are a mine operator.

As directed by the MLR board, office staff members consider the extraction of any material that uses public roads or benefits another to be mining.

They have extended this policy to include cleaning and maintaining irrigation reservoirs and canals.

We believe that this interpretation is wrong.

When the Left Hand is Stopping the Right Hand

We are currently advocating for clients who received...

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Oregon Petition 3 Threatens Agriculture

Oregon Petition 3 Threatens Agriculture

Petition 3 (IP 3) is a ballot initiative currently collecting petition signatures in Oregon. Its language is similar to Colorado Initiative 16, but with much greater restrictions. If IP3 makes it on the ballot in Oregon, it will misrepresent and harm animal owners and set a precedent for other states. This will be harmful to pet owners and agriculturalists across America.

Misleading Summary

Like with most of the ballot initiatives by animal rights groups, the summary of IP 3 leads the people of Oregon to believe that they are supporting animal welfare by signing a petition in favor of this ballot initiative. This common tactic is used with ballot initiatives to mislead and sway voters.

Looking Past the Summary

A look beyond the surface of the petition shows that IP 3 is a way to implement an animal rights agenda and to remove animal protein products like beef, chicken, pork, and dairy, as well as fish and game meats, from the diet of the citizens of Oregon. IP3...

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Oregon County Uses New Law to Restrict Livestock Operations

Linn County, Oregon, Uses New Law to Restrict Livestock Operations

According to a June 2023 article in the Statesman’s Journal, “Oregon has passed a bill imposing restrictions on new or expanding large livestock and poultry farms in the state.” The bill the article refers to is Oregon Senate Bill 85, which comprises of a number of restrictions for confined feeding animal operations (CAFOs), including groundwater use, permit requirements for waste management, and property line setbacks.

On December 12, 2023, Linn County, Oregon, recently utilized Oregon Senate Bill 85 to severely restrict the number and locations of large CAFOs by changing their county code to include a setback of one mile for livestock buildings from the property line of neighboring property. This action was taken in response to a proposal to build an 11-barn poultry farm in a rural area of Linn County.

SB 85 was Legislation Presented by Special Interest Groups Calling for a Moratorium on New or Expanding Livestock Operations

Originally, SB 85 called...

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Winter Manure Management Tips

Winter Manure Management Tips

Article by Progressive Farmer reporting information provided by the University of Nebraska-Lincoln

Highlights:

Factors To Consider

Producers need to test their soil and manure nutrient concentrations to guide their decisions on where manure should be applied. If possible, avoid applying manure on fields with slopes, as this land presents a greater risk for erosion and runoff.

Try to apply manure on ground with at least 30% crop residue cover as this reduces the chances of manure runoff during heavy rains and snowmelt. Another consideration would be to apply manure on coarse-textured soils as fine-textured soils have more infiltration rates and reduce the risk for nutrient runoff losses.

In general, manure application should be avoided when fields are snow-covered. If manure must be applied then or when the soil is frozen, it is critical to recognize the runoff risk associated with solid versus liquid manures before making application decisions.

Different Manure, Different Rules

For...

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Wolves released in Colorado came from a pack that kills livestock in Oregon

Article excerpts:

"Two wolves released on Dec. 19, 2023, in Grand County, Colorado, 2302-OR, a juvenile female, black color, 68 pounds, and 2303-OR, a juvenile male, gray color, 76 pounds, come from the Five Points Pack. According to Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife Livestock Depredation Investigations, Five Points Pack wolves injured one calf and killed another in separate depredations in July of 2023; killed a cow on Dec. 5, 2022; and injured a 900-pound yearling heifer on July 17, 2022.

On July 21, OFW authorized the killing of up to four wolves from the Five Points Pack after two attacks on livestock within a week, which were the second and third depredations in the area within eight months. USDA employees killed two adult females, one adult male, and a yearling female from the problem pack by Aug. 4.

The other wolves released the same day, 2304-OR, a juvenile female, gray color, 76 pounds, and 2305-OR, a juvenile male, black color, 93 pounds, both come from the Noregaard Pack. According to OFW, the Noregaard Pack was involved in the confirmed killing...

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Farmers Freedom Act

Senators Pete Ricketts (R-NE) and Mike Rounds (R-SD) recently introduced the Farmer’s Freedom Act of 2023. The Farmer’s Freedom Act was written in response to governmental overreach in the latest Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule written by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA had rewritten the rules in response to the Supreme Court (SCOTUS) decision in Sackett vs. EPA, which clarified the definition of navigable Waters of the United States. This stripped EPA control over unconnected wet areas, like livestock ponds and vernal pools (mud puddles) that can form in the low spots in pastures and fields after a rain.

The legislation is designed to offer regulatory certainty to farmers, ranchers, and landowners by safeguarding the definition of prior converted cropland (PCC). Wetlands converted to cropland before 1985, have historically been exempt from WOTUS regulation. The EPA’s new WOTUS rule alters this exemption, potentially categorizing PCC as wetlands if it becomes unsuitable for commodity production or is used for non-agricultural purposes....

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Chad teVelde, PE, Appointed to Weld County Farm Bureau Board of Directors

- PRESS RELEASE-

Greeley, Colorado

December 6, 2023

We are pleased to announce AGPROfessionals' Senior Principal Engineer, Chad teVelde, P.E. has been appointed to the Weld County Farm Bureau Board of Directors.

Chad's connection to the dairy industry is deeply rooted, having grown up on his family's dairy in Chino, California. His hands-on experience extends to operating a dairy in partnership with his brother in Nebraska and beyond. Chad earned his degree in Agricultural Engineering from California Polytechnic University, San Luis Obispo. In 2002, he launched his engineering consulting career, specializing in dairy and building design.

Chad teVelde joined AGPROfessionals in 2011, assuming the role of Senior Professional Engineer. Within our organization, Chad is dedicated to serving our clients by offering a range of new and existing dairy development services, encompassing site selection, construction, irrigation structures,...

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Keeping Small-Town America Alive

We believe it is critical to keep small towns in rural America alive. Small towns are the foundation and backbone of America. They embody the values that this country was built on. Traditionally, agriculture has been a significant source of revenue for small towns. It provides jobs on farms and related industries such as food processing, transportation, services, and retail. The income generated by these jobs circulates in the local economy.

Unfortunately, small towns across America are facing a problem with limited job opportunities and increased poverty. According to a USDA report titled Rural Employment and Unemployment, from 2007 to 2010, small towns lost over 1.4 million jobs, with the 2009 recession being a significant contributing factor. From 2010 to 2019, employment slowly grew but never fully recovered to the employment rates in 2007. Factors for unemployment can vary; however, there is often not enough work in small towns, even if a person is consistently looking and applying for positions....

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COLORADO WATER QUALITY CONTROL DIVISION CHANGES

The Colorado Water Quality Control Division (WQCD) is currently in the process of making changes and updates to the state’s construction stormwater permit regulations.

These changes are primarily being made to provide additional clarification on existing regulations and to update definitions to be clearer.

New Permitting Process – Updating Stormwater Management Plans

Colorado is transitioning to new construction stormwater permit certifications and the Stormwater Management Plan requirements and meeting specific submittal deadlines to continue coverage.

Since there are new code changes, current Stormwater Management Plans may require additional information in order to be in compliance when the transition occurs.

Critical Dates for Stormwater Discharge Permit Holders

For current construction, stormwater discharge permit holders

o Current permits expire on March 31, 2024

o To continue coverage after March 31st, a renewal must be...

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Jared Polis Needs to Give Agriculture in Colorado Some Respect Byron Pelton Barbara Kirkmeyer.png

It's Time That Colorado's 2nd Leading Economic Driver, Agriculture, Gets Some Respect

July 11, 2023 Opinion Editorial by Senators Bryon Pelton and Barbara Kirkmeyer published in Our Town Colorado

"Every now and then we all like to take a trip down memory lane.

When you are a senator serving in the minority, those memories can be painful sometimes. But try being a senator from rural Colorado in the minority and recalling all the bad legislation, proclamations, executive orders or department appointments that have come across the books over the past few years — painful doesn’t even begin to describe it.

We represent the heart of rural Colorado — Weld, Logan, Morgan, Phillips, Sedgwick, Washington, and Yuma counties where agriculture is one of the top industries, and not just in our own counties, but also in our state and the nation. Weld County is the No. 1 beef producer in Colorado and among the top 5 in the United States.

And let’s not forget lamb, turkey, pig and chicken production as well as corn, wheat,...

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WOTUS - Waters of the United States Back in Court

Waters of the United States - WOTUS - is Back in Court

On November 11th, twenty-four states filed an Amended Complaint in federal court over the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule. This is happening on the heels of the Supreme Court decision Sackett vs. the EPA and subsequent rulemaking by the current administration.

Attorneys for the states and industry groups have voiced strong criticism against the new rule. The complaint asserts that the current administration’s latest revision of the Waters of the United States Rule utilizes an impractical definition conflicting with the Clean Water Act, the Constitution, and Supreme Court precedent.

The Amended Complaint states, “…the Amended Final Rule still violates the CWA, 33 U.S.C. §§ 1251-1387, the Administrative Procedure Act (APA), 5 U.S.C. §§ 701-706, and the United States Constitution. It “exce[eds] [the Agencies’] statutory jurisdiction [and] authority” under the CWA by encompassing waters with no reasonable connection to “navigable waters.” 5...

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Maria Irianni Renno MS PhD Candidate Senior Enviornmental Engineer

AGPROfessionals Hires Maria Irianni Renno, M.S. PhD Candidate

- PRESS RELEASE-

November 7, 2023

On November 7, 2023, Maria Irianni Renno joined the group as Senior Environmental Engineer. Irianni Renno has over 10 years of experience working as a project manager and technical specialist in environmental remediation, working in the academic sector in collaboration with private and government clients, on-site investigations, remediation system design, and developing and implementing monitoring tools for site and technology assessments.

Maria specializes in biogeochemical cycle characterization and its application to different environments with the goal of optimizing natural and engineered processes to achieve efficient and cost-effective solutions. She has extensive field experience in the collection and preservation of biodegradable and redox-sensitive samples as well as in the installation of non-conventional monitoring sensor-based tools. Maria is well-versed in several remediation technologies and has...

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WELD COUNTY NOTICE – PROPOSED ZONING CHANGES:

Weld County, Colorado, is considering major changes to its subdivision processes, which include changes to Chapter 23 (Zoning), Chapter 24 (Subdivisions), and Chapter 27 (Planned Unit Developments).

The following changes are proposed:

  • ORD2023-17 (Repealing and Reenacting with Amendments Chapter 23 (Zoning) and Chapter 24 (Subdivisions)) . Ordinance 2023-17 was withdrawn from the November 7th Planning Commission Agenda for further changes to the draft Ordinance.
  • ORD2023-18 (Repealing and Reenacting with Amendments Chapter 27 (Planned Unit Developments)). If adopted, Ordinance 2023-18 will rewrite Chapter 27 and state that no new PUDs will be allowed.

Planning Commission Voted Unanimously to Recommend Denial

At the November 7th Planning Commission hearing, the Planning Commission voted unanimously to recommend of denial of ORD2023-18 to the Board of County Commissioners, with the comment that the Planning Commission would like to see additional Board...

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Response to Study About Diabetes 2 and Red Meat

Diabetes is a Glucose Problem, and Red Meat Does Not Contain Glucose

Harvard University’s T.H. Chan’s School of Public Health, recently published a study titled, Red meat intake and risk of type 2 diabetes in a prospective cohort study of United States females and males (2023). The study concluded: “Our study supports current dietary recommendations for limiting consumption of red meat intake and emphasizes the importance of different alternative sources of protein for T2D prevention.”

Diabetes is a disease where the human body is unable to manage glucose. Red meat does not contain glucose. However, carbohydrates such as buns, rolls, bread, french fries, and soda that are often consumed with red meat do contain glucose.

Epidemiological Studies Have a Bad Track Record

The methodology utilized in the study is called epidemiology. It has been defined as the study of the determinants, occurrence, and distribution of health and disease in a defined population. Overall, epidemiology, when rigorously tested in clinical...

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Solar Farms and Wildlife Success Stories Uncovered

Solar Farms and Wildlife – Success Stories Uncovered

Solar farms have been a target of contention for several years among critics concerned about their potentially harmful environmental and wildlife impacts. These concerns are often based on misinformation and the lack of broad public awareness of the successful work solar developers, environmental experts, and others have done to benefit wildlife, minimize water usage, and manage water runoff. Studies have shown that solar farms do a lot to improve and enhance the environment and wildlife.

Benefits to Wildlife

Wildlife can see a significant benefit from solar farms through scientific research, careful scaling, and effective modeling. An article by the Quintas Group stated that solar farms can help various endangered species thrive. The article also highlighted that the panels could reverse the decline in some species.

According to a study by researchers from the Universities of York and Lancaster (UK), the panels can serve as protection for small animals. One pro-solar...

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Agriculture and Energy Production Coexist

Article published on Chevron.com

"On Art Guttersen’s 35,000-acre Colorado ranch are cows, horses, chickens—and active oil and gas operations.

Wellheads, tankless facilities and drilling rigs are strategically placed throughout his property, against the backdrop of green fields and distant, snowcapped Rocky Mountains.

As his cows grazed nearby, Guttersen reflected on how energy development spared his multigenerational farm from being sold to developers.

“Chevron saved my ranch,” he said.

Why It Matters

Agriculture and energy production are essential industries.

Guttersen wants his ranch to serve as an example of how these sectors can work together to meet growing demands for both.

“Our ranch is better today with wells on it,” he said. “It’s no longer just a ranch. It has become a major producer for the economy.”

A Good Neighbor

"Those visiting Guttersen’s ranch must abide by a series of rules: no smoking, littering or exceeding the 21 mph speed limit.

Likewise, Chevron has its own...

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Our Mission is To Keep Agriculture Thriving

For nearly 25 years, AGPROfessionals has been a proud developer and advocate of all types of agricultural business in Colorado and throughout the United States. The fingerprints of our work have been on nearly every major agricultural project in Morgan County in the last quarter-century. We are unapologetic about our focus to keep agriculture thriving and growing.

However, with the challenges facing common agricultural practices, keeping agriculture thriving and growing is becoming more complex every year. Agriculture is under significant regulatory pressure to lower its carbon footprint and reduce environmental impacts without regard for the producer's costs. Satisfying those pressures and keeping our clients in business is complicated.

Every day, farmers and ranchers face rules and regulations that make it harder to produce. Some of the challenges producers face are as follows:

  • Row crop farmers are unable to aerial spray anymore due to urban encroachment and their options to protect their crops are continually decreasing.
  • Land prices and taxes...
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How Dairy Farmers Are Turning Manure Into Money

Digesters are being utilized in dairies to recycle manure into biogas and fertilizer.

They are also being used to reduce the impact of food waste.

We are proud to be working with Vanguard Renewables on many of these projects.

How Diary Farmers Are Turning Manure Into Money –

Article in Smithsonian Magazine

Article Excerpts:

“In the early 2000s, when the price of milk plummeted and dairy farms everywhere were trying to find a way to diversify, the Barstows began thinking about how to stay alive. They decided to take full advantage of an underutilized commodity the cows produced in abundance, and build something called an anaerobic digester—basically, a manure-fueled power plant.”

“In 2013, Vanguard started trucking more than 24,000 tons of food waste each year, from local companies, such as Cabot Creamery and HP Hood, to the Barstows’ farm. “Manure is really just food waste that’s been digested once,” says Patrick Serfass, executive director of the American Biogas Council. “So when you take food...

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Solar for Agriculture

The Cost of Solar Panels Has Decreased – Creating Opportunities for Farmers

As solar panel manufacturing has ramped up around the world, prices have declined dramatically. The long-term price implications suggest that solar will be the cheapest form of energy in all markets, it is only a matter of time. In fact, it already is the cheapest electric power in many locations. This points to the opportunity that solar presents for farmers.

Only the Sun and Space Needed for Solar

Most basically, generating solar energy requires the sun, solar equipment, and the space to locate that equipment. Farmers own, control, or work more space (land) than any other profession. Whether the under-utilized space is rooftops, marginal farmland, or other unused land area, considering solar energy for those spaces can generate significant benefits for farmers and ranchers.

Reduced Energy Costs and Tax Credits

The first benefit of owning solar is reducing energy costs. Solar panel systems produce electricity for over 30...

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Morgan County: Solar Project Update

We have provided the documentation involved in the planning and permitting process of the Taelor Solar Project here on our website. Having it here, to easily open or download online, saves a trip to the Morgan County Planning Commission Office. We have included the entire application packet as well as the supplemental packet and have also broken out specific sections for ease of reading.

You will find that a lot of work has gone into the planning of this project with concern given to the wildlife, ecosystem, erosion and flood control, traffic, community, and economic impact.

Questions? Contact Taylor Henderson

Contact Information

Taylor Henderson – Project Developer

3300 E 1st Ave, Suite 675

Denver, CO 80206, USA

(970) 295-2234

TaelorSolarProject@BalancedRockPower.com

Links and Resources

Link to Taelor Solar Project Open House Event on Facebook HERE

Link to Taelor Solar Project website...

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Agriculture and Renewable Energy

Renewable Energy Has Become a Key Component of Agriculture

Over the weekend, we were asked what energy has to do with agriculture, and the answer is – everything.

Agriculture relies on various forms of energy to power equipment, to heat and cool buildings from barns to greenhouses, to run fans in barns and silos, to light barns and pens, to run well pumps, to heat water, to run robotics, to electrify fences, to heat and refrigerate tanks, to manage manure, to plant, harvest, store, and ship crops and commodities and more.

Renewable Energy Offsets Farm and Ranch Expenses

In addition to the required energy to produce nutritious and affordable food, farmers and ranchers utilize energy to offset expenses. Corn is grown to produce renewable energy in the form of ethanol. Manure digesters produce natural gas at dairies. The US Department of Energy estimates that biomass energy has the potential to provide as much as $20 billion in new income for farmers, ranchers, and rural communities. Farmers and ranchers are also...

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Not in my backyard

Another "Not in my backyard" scenario was made even more egregious since the city annexed a long-operating farm, and Tennessee's Right to Farm laws are very clear.

Article by Chris Bennett for Farm Journal and...

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AGPROs Vice President Communications and Strategic Planning

Karen Gerfen Glueck is named Vice President, Communications and Strategic Planning

PRESS RELEASE

September 14, 2023

Agriculture development and advocacy firm AGPROfessionals, is positioning itself for future growth. On August 28, Karen Gerfen Glueck assumed the role of VicePresident of Communications and Strategic Planning.

Gerfen Glueck is a recognized advocate for agriculture and a communications, operations, and strategic planning expert. She guided the non-profit agriculture advocacy group Protect the Harvest’s growth to national prominence.Before joining Protect the Harvest, Karen spent 20 years working in a variety of roles, from operations and training to communications, marketing, and strategic planning to help grow the largest animal hospital company in the United States, VCA Antech , which Mars Animal Health now owns.

“AGPROfessionals has been highly successful going into our 25th year; however, the business environment is changing around us, and we must not only adapt, but lead in our work of advocating for our...

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NIMBY, Not in My Backyard

Colorado Laws Mandate Change in Energy Production

In 2021, Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed into law a suite of bills related to greenhouse gas emissions and energy production. The bills address streamlining solar energy permitting, encouraging other types of heating and cooling, renewable energy workforce careers, and more. This new suite of laws to encourage alternative energy production is not a new concept for Colorado and its residents. In fact, Colorado was the first state to enact a renewable energy standard (RES) in 2004. The energy standard required utilities to transmit specific percentages of energy from renewable sources.

Some Colorado Landscapes Are Ideal for Solar Energy Production

An article in Forbes about solar energy stated, "...the state of Colorado is one of the best states for solar energy." Colorado's elevation, weather, and broad expanses of flat land make it an ideal area for solar energy generation. In addition to those features, portions of Colorado's landscape are unsuitable for crop production...

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Food Companies Targeted in Colorado

Colorado:

New Pollution Rules for Manufacturers Raise Questions and Eyebrows

Anyone reading the Denver Post article titled, “State weighs new pollution rules for manufacturers” has to wonder why certain businesses have become targets of environmentalists and the policy makers they sway, and others have not. This is all about the 2021 law titled the Environmental Justice Act (HB 21-1266) which mandates a requirement for greenhouse gas reduction from companies that are in disproportionately impacted communities. At this point it appears that the rulemaking process has already commenced and there will be a hearing starting Wednesday at 4:35, then on Thursday 21st, and Friday the 22nd.

Washington DC Environmental Group Is Meddling in Colorado

It is not surprising that a Washington DC group called Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) has weighed in and the panel advising the Department of Public Health and Environment, called the Climate Equity Community Advisory Council, is vying for their recommendations to be...

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Snake River Waterkeeper, Simplot, Lawsuit

Founded in 2014, the Snake River Waterkeeper group has been busy in Idaho. The group’s website touts a variety of activities, from dam removal demonstrations, joining numerous lawsuits over the definition of “Waters of the United States,” to suing the EPA and filing a lawsuit to appeal Idaho’s newly promulgated General CAFO Permit Rule to the 9th Circuit.

Most Recent Target – Simplot

In May of this year, Snake River Waterkeeper filed a Clean Water Act lawsuit against Simplot Livestock, alleging that Simplot was discharging manure illegally. According to an article in Progressive Farmer, in response, Simplot Livestock filed a motion for dismissal on the grounds that the lawsuit could not provide any specifics for which they are making their claims.

On September 6th, the court ordered to stay discovery until it issues a decision on the pending motion to dismiss. The court took this action for various reasons, but most importantly, because proper notice to Simplot was not given. Snake River Waterkeeper could not and did not provide specific facts...

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colorado energy office

The Urban Dictionary defines a “shakedown” as:

“Another word for extortion/blackmail, or the obtaining of a good or service through means of force, threats/intimidation, or abuse of power."

Colorado’s Energy Performance for Buildings Statute

Colorado House Bill 21-1286, the Energy Performance for Buildings Statute, was established with the goal of helping building owners increase energy efficiency, lower energy costs, and decrease greenhouse gas emissions.

This sounds like a great idea until implementation commences, and government agencies enter the picture.

Agriculture is Supposed to Be Exempt

The Colorado Energy Office is mandated to address the “Energy Performance for Buildings” statute. It requires buildings over 50,000 square feet to comply with new energy standards by 2030. According to the law, agricultural buildings are exempt.

It clearly states:

“(II) "COVERED BUILDING" DOES NOT INCLUDE:

(B) A BUILDING IN WHICH MORE THAN HALF OF THE GROSS FLOOR AREA IS USED FOR...

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EATS Act, Animal Agriculture, Protect Producers

As the Farm Bill gets close to expiring, an important piece of legislation meant to protect animal agriculture producers, titled Ending Agricultural Trade Suppression Act (EATS), has become a hot topic.

On August 21st, Congressmen Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania and Earl Blumenauer of Oregon submitted a letter to the House Committee on Agriculture opposing the EATS Act. This letter is reported to have gained 171 signatures. Of those signatures, four Colorado Congress members have signed, including some “agriculture” groups based in Washington D.C. that have no practical experience in actual agriculture production geared towards feeding hundreds of millions of people.

The EATS Act - A Response to Proposition 12 in California and Similar Legislation in Other States

The EATS Act was initially sponsored by U.S. Senator Roger Marshall and cosponsored by Senators Charles Grassley, Cindy Hyde-Smith, John Cornyn, and Joni Ernst. The EATS Act aimed to combat anti-animal agriculture legislation penned by animal rights groups. The EATS Act would...

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EPA regulations, Idaho, Government, Policy,

On July 18, 2023, the Environmental Protection Agency ( EPA ) submitted new proposed modifications to the National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System (NPDES) permit requirements. At this time, Region 10 of the EPA has tentatively determined to make the proposed modifications.

The comment period to respond and give feedback was open until September 1, 2023.

Now, we wait for the findings and the final rule.

Here’s What You Need to Know

The EPA’s proposed modifications involve the establishment of monitoring conditions for the following discharges involving “waters of the United States”:

  • Subsurface discharges of pollutants from production areas
  • Dry weather surface and subsurface discharges from land application areas

Details

Listed below are highlights of the new regulations. The following actions must be taken if runoff or discharge from land application area impacts “Waters of the United States”:

Monitoring the following discharges, which will be sampled and...

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Spring Cleaning on the Dairy

Spring is here, which means it is time for dairy operators to start thinking about their “spring cleaning” practices. Between managing spring rains and runoff, planting, and the beginning of land application, spring can feel overwhelming and like there is too much to be done in too little time. This busy season can sometimes disrupt basic cleanup processes that are necessary to pass annual state or county inspections. AGPROfessionals has three tips that can jump-start your “spring cleaning” and ensure that your facility is operating smoothly, cleanly, and can help to relieve some of the stress that can accompany state or county inspections.

Inspect Regularly

Diligently inspecting the manure management systems prior to starting land application could help prevent equipment malfunctions, unwanted runoff, and excess ponding water. These include manure hauling equipment, pumps, ponds, settling basins, etc. Taking the time to inspect and calibrate equipment can help to be intentional with land...

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If you are looking for subdividing or land planning services, there is only one name to trust — AGPROfessionals. We have been in the nationwide agriculture real estate development business for over 20 years and our team has all of the experience necessary to get your project done correctly. Here are just four reasons why you should let us handle your subdividing or land planning services!

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Car∙bon se∙ques∙tra∙tion / noun / a natural or artificial process by which carbon dioxide is removed from the atmosphere and held in solid or liquid form.

It is estimated that 80% of the world’s carbon is found in the soil and it has potential to store more[1]. Hence, why the new federal administration is looking toward agriculture to help. Carbon is initially transferred to the soil through photosynthesis of plants. Carbon that is not used by the plant is transferred to the soil through the root system. Carbon then feeds the soil organisms and becomes stable. It gives the soil structure, as it is the main component of organic matter, which also increases water retention capacity. Some carbon is maintained in the topsoil and can be released back into the atmosphere, while other carbon is more stable and can stay in the soil for thousands of years....

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Finding agricultural properties in Greeley, Colorado

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Solar Energy - What if you could harvest the sun?

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