Ditching the Plow, Reviving the Soil

first_img SHARE Ditching the Plow, Reviving the Soil By Gary Truitt – Jan 3, 2018 Ditching the Plow, Reviving the SoilDavid MontgomeryThe plow is at the heart of farming. Yet more and more farmers are finding a different approach can be good for the soil and good for their bottom line. David Montgomery is a geologist at the University of Washington and he says the plow has, over time, caused a good deal of damage to the environment, ”Long term reliance on the plow has not only degraded organic soil matter but has resulted in the loss of soil off some very large portions of land around the world.” He admits the plow has had some benefits in weed reduction and increased yields but feels long term the negatives outweigh the positives.Yet the damage is not irreversible. Montgomery told HAT he has visited farmers around the world where farmers are rebuilding their soil health, ”There was a simple set of principles being used by the farmers I visited who were successful in improving their soil, ditch the plow, use cover crops, and growing a greater diversity of crops.” He added the farmers who were able to improve their soil health saw increases in productivity and profitability, “They reduced their cost of diesel, fertilizer, and pesticide. They were more profitable than their more conventional neighbors.”David MontgomeryMontgomery, is not advocating a non-technical approach to agriculture but combining technology and ecology in a way that is productive and profitable, “In our modern world we need a small number of farmers feeding a large number of people and for that we need technology. It is a matter of getting modern technology in line with anchent wisdom. The common element is building soil health.” He said it all starts with looking at farming in a new way. A way that considers the environment as well as economics.Mongonery has published a new book “Growing a Revolution: Bringing Our Soil Back to Life. It is described as a s a good-news environment story. The new book weaves a travelogue with history and science to tell of visits to farms in North and South Dakota, site of the famous Dust Bowl, as well as Ohio, Pennsylvania, Africa and Costa Rica. These farmers use technology ranging from hand-powered machetes to enormous modern no-till seeding machines. Seeing approaches that worked in very different situations, Montgomery sought out the common ground for building fertile soil as a consequence of farming. Facebook Twitter Home Indiana Agriculture News Ditching the Plow, Reviving the Soil Previous articleDual Modes of Action and Residuals are Key to Fungicide SuccessNext articleDitching the Plow, Reviving the Soil on the HAT Wednesday Morning Edition Gary Truitt SHARE Facebook Twitterlast_img read more

TV station director is the target of murder attempt

first_img On the night of 29 September, some 10 shots were fired at the car of Euri Cabral, the head of the TV station Canal 23 and presenter of the programme “El gobierno de la Mañana” on radio Z-101. Reporters Without Borders said the attack was clearly planned with great care. Reporters Without Borders has expressed concern over the attempted assassination of Euri Cabral, director of Channel 23 television and host of Radio Z-101’s “El gobierno de la Mañana” programme.”We ask you to do everything possible to ensure that the attackers and those behind the attack are identified and punished as soon as possible. This assassination attempt was obviously carefully planned. It is important to prevent the emergence of a climate of impunity in the Dominican Republic,” said Reporters Without Borders in a letter to Interior Minister Franklin Almeyda Rancier.”We are particularly worried given that this is the second serious attackagainst the press following the death of a journalist in Azua, east of Santo Domingo, on 14 September 2004. Reporters in this city say they are still receiving threats. Their aggressors, who are notorious criminals, must be brought under control quickly,” said Reporters Without Borders.”However, we welcome the reaction of President Leonel Fernández, who immediately condemned the attack on Cabral, as well as the authorities’ initiative to grant protection to all the journalists who work on the programme,” the organisation added.On the night of 29 September, after hosting the programme “Temas del día” on Channel 23, Cabral was the target of an assassination attempt in Santo Domingo. He was in his vehicle when a car tried to block his path. Two individuals on motorcycle fired several shots at the car, including three shots at head-level.Police have arrested a suspect, but his identity has not yet been revealed. Cabral said members of the former government and the police may have been responsible for the attack, which he believed was designed to spread fear among the media.The journalist has been very critical of former president Hipolito Mejía and is reputed to have close ties to the governing Dominican Liberation Party (Partido de la Liberación Dominicana, PLD). He has spoken out frequently in favour of putting officials from the Mejía government on trial for corruption.Before the 16 August presidential election, he received threats, which he did not consider serious. He is now under police protection.Meanwhile, in the city of Azua, where journalist Juan Andújar was killed by gang members on 14 September, journalists are still being threatened. Several journalists, as well as those close to them, have received further death threats. Hostile climate for Dominican media since start of 2015 February 15, 2017 Find out more Help by sharing this information October 1, 2004 – Updated on January 20, 2016 TV station director is the target of murder attempt September 22, 2014 Find out more June 25, 2015 Find out more Dominican RepublicAmericas Receive email alerts Follow the news on Dominican Republic Dominican Republic: News presenter and producer gunned down in mid-broadcast Organisation News News News RSF_en Dominican RepublicAmericas News Journalists wounded while covering street clashes in Santo Domingo to go furtherlast_img read more

Adjunct Faculty – Law – Street Law Program – (ADJ000284)

first_imgThe Law Center offers graduate level courses in Law in multiplespecialty areas and occasionally has openings for part-time Adjunctprofessors. Interested and qualified candidates are invited toapply to be considered for these temporary, part-timepositions.Adjunct opportunities vary based on the type of course.Opportunities include: (i) traditional doctrinal courses taught ina lecture format; (ii) clinical education, which is a type ofexperiential learning course; (iii) simulation courses, which are atype of experiential learning course; and (iv) involvement with theLaw Center’s Blakely Advocacy Institute(http://www.law.uh.edu/blakely), where the opportunities include avariety of skills‑based courses.This posting is for the Law Center’s Street Law program, a seriesof two simulation courses where law students instruct high schoolstudents about the law. See http://www.streetlaw.org/ . The LawCenter’s program consists of a fall and spring semester course,example instances are here:http://www.law.uh.edu/schedule/class_information.asp?CID=15643(Street Law I, fall)http://www.law.uh.edu/schedule/class_information.asp?CID=15985(Street Law II, spring)This Adjunct Professor of Law opportunity is unique in that itrequires the appointee to be available during the day on week daysin order to facilitate and instruct as the Law Center students areinteracting with the local high schools. Also, the ideal appointeewill be available to teach the course in both the fall and springsemesters for continuity.As a non‑tenure track (NTT) position, the appointee will accrue notime toward tenure at the University of Houston. Furtherinformation about the Law Center and its programs is available at:http://www.law.uh.edu .Adjunct professor appointments are made by the Law Center’sAssociate Dean for Academic Affairs, Professor Greg R. Vetter,[email protected] In addition to the formal application made inresponse to this posting, applicants should send the Associate Deana short email expressing his or her interest, attaching a resume orcurriculum vitae to that email.The University of Houston is an Equal Opportunity/AffirmativeAction institution. Minorities, women, veterans and persons withdisabilities are encouraged to apply.Qualifications :J.D. degreeNotes to Applicant: Official transcripts are required for afaculty appointment and will be requested of an appointee. Allpositions at the University of Houston are security sensitive andwill require a criminal history check.last_img read more

Putin makes his move

first_imgThe debate over Crimea has grown more heated as Russian President Vladimir Putin first insisted that citizens in the majority ethnic-Russian region of Ukraine should determine their own political fate, then supported a plebiscite there on the territory’s future, and finally declared Crimea part of Russia. But many world leaders disagree, arguing that Ukraine’s national sovereignty has been violated and that Putin is simply exercising a power grab.  By email, Nicholas Burns, professor of the practice of diplomacy and international politics at Harvard Kennedy School, answered questions about the crisis, its implications, and possible outcomes.GAZETTE: What is President Putin’s strategy toward Ukraine?BURNS: Following Sunday’s referendum in Crimea, Putin’s strategy is crystal clear. He seeks to build a band of buffer states in an orbit around the Russian Federation and to deny them the right to look westward for their future trade, investment, and security ties.  That is why he invaded Georgia in August 2008. He fought to separate it from Abkhazia and South Ossetia, both still under effective Russian control.He is coercing Armenia, Moldova, and now Ukraine from even thinking about a relationship with the European Union, much less NATO. He may very well move to annex Crimea — a clear violation of international law, the United Nations Charter, and the Helsinki Final Act, as well as the Budapest Agreement of December 1994.  Putin is also reserving the right to rush to “protect” ethnic Russians in eastern Ukraine should that be necessary.Putin believes that power rules. He took Crimea because he could, knowing that NATO would not oppose him. I wonder if, with Russia on the move and China bullying smaller countries in the South China Sea, this is really the right time to reduce the U.S. Army to its smallest size since 1940.He has moved a massive number of troops to the Ukraine border to intimidate the new government in Kiev.  His strategy is to preserve what the Russians call their “Near Abroad” — a sphere of influence for Russia.  This is indicative of a 20th-century and very Soviet mindset that is contrary to the democratic and pluralistic trends in modern Europe of our own century.GAZETTE: How can the U.S. and Europe respond to Putin’s aggression in Ukraine?BURNS: President Obama, Chancellor Angela Merkel, and other European leaders are seeking to do three things in response.First, they are extending important economic assistance ($15 billion from the E.U. and $1 billion in U.S. loan guarantees) to the new interim government in Kiev.  That, along with International Monetary Fund assistance, will be a shot in the arm to the struggling authorities in Kiev who are trying to guide the country to new presidential elections on May 25. President Obama’s meeting in the Oval Office last week with Ukrainian Prime Minister Arseny Yatseniuk was important symbolic support to Kiev.Second, while NATO will not consider the use of military force to oppose the Russian invasion of Crimea (we have no security commitment to Ukraine and to rattle sabers would be foolhardy in the nuclear age), NATO is building up its conventional forces in those NATO countries that are situated close to Ukraine and Russia — Poland, Romania, Lithuania, Latvia, and Estonia.  These new members of NATO experienced the Soviet reality all too vividly as members of the Warsaw Pact or, in the case of the Baltic states, republics of the U.S.S.R.  They have, understandably, an existential fear of Russian aggression. NATO has accordingly sent F-15 fighters to the Baltic countries and F-16s to Poland to reinforce the point to Putin that NATO’s Article V collective defense commitment is rock solid. Putin is a rational leader and will not contest NATO primacy in Eastern Europe. His strategy is to prey upon the weaker countries that have no ties to NATO or to the E.U.  Nonetheless, it is very important for President Obama to exercise strong and visible leadership of NATO during this crisis.Third, Obama and European leaders want to employ sanctions on Russia to drive up the cost of the invasion to Putin.  But Europe and American may not be fully on the same page on sanctions. If the Crimea referendum results in a decision by Putin to have the territory separate formally from Ukraine through annexation, the U.S. and the East European allies will want to counter with strong sanctions. I hope that those European countries largely dependent on Russia for their natural gas imports will go along.  But the unfortunate reality is that Europe is hooked on Russian gas.  That has made them overly cautious in response to Putin. One policy decision Obama could make is to approve the sale and transport of liquefied natural gas exports to Europe.  While it would take several years to develop the infrastructure on both sides of the Atlantic, it might help to relieve the ill-advised European dependence on Russian energy over the long term.It is important to remember that Obama did not cause this problem, Putin did. Obama’s critics are wrong to blame him for Putin’s aggression. That charge did not add up when Putin ignored George W. Bush during the Georgia War, and it doesn’t now.  It may be a quaint and antique notion, but wouldn’t it be nice if politics actually stopped at the water’s edge on Ukraine? We won the Cold War, in part, because there was unity at home.  This is a time, I think, when Republican leaders should stand with Obama as he duels with Putin.GAZETTE: Is there a diplomatic strategy to help end the crisis?BURNS: Wisely, President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry have left the door open for a diplomatic resolution. They are trying to convince Putin to open talks with the new Ukrainian government on a possible agreement to provide greater autonomy for the ethnic Russian population in Crimea but to keep the territory within Ukraine. It is a good idea and provides an exit door for Putin should he wish to escape the crisis.  But, I don’t think he will walk down this road with us. And I don’t believe he will ever hand back Crimea now that he has stolen it.GAZETTE: What is at stake in the Ukraine crisis?  Why is it important to Americans?BURNS: A big idea — that every European democracy should be free, in the 21st century, to choose its friends and geopolitical orientation. If you think about it, we fought the First and Second World Wars, as well as the Cold War, because Europe was fractious, violent, and disunited. When the Cold War ended in 1991 with the merciful collapse of the Soviet empire, President George H.W. Bush said memorably that we had won a “democratic peace” in Europe.  It was one of the great achievements of American history and it has given us for 23 years (with the major exception of the Balkans) a welcome period of peace and of relative harmony and democracy in Europe.Putin has disrupted that peace with his violation of Ukraine’s sovereign territory.  While the Cold War has not returned in its original form, Cold War passions have been unleashed once again. We are thus witnessing the renewal of the great struggle for peace and freedom in Europe that I don’t think will end until Putin’s generation of Soviet men pass from the scene.When President Obama attends the Nuclear Security Summit in The Hague later this month, he should visit the monumental Peace Palace that Andrew Carnegie built there in 1913. Carnegie thought it might be possible to promote the amicable resolution of global disputes and to end war among the great powers.  The Peace Palace is now home in our time to the Permanent Court of Arbitration and the International Court of Justice.Putin could have taken his Crimea obsession to its gilded corridors. But he chose war instead.  I find it to be supremely ironic that one of the Peace Palace’s major backers, Tsar Nicholas II, blundered into the Great War a year later that ultimately destroyed his empire and dynastic rule.Obama could suggest that Putin, intent on restoring Russia’s greatness, be mindful of that historical lesson.  Carnegie’s call for a great power peace still resonates a century later. That is the peace Putin is threatening with his ill-advised land grab in Europe.(Parts of this email interview were supplemented with material from Nicholas Burns’ March 13 op-ed column in The Boston Globe on this subject.)last_img read more

Mr Green agrees to €7 million Evoke Gaming acquisition

first_img TVBET passes GLI test for five live games in Malta and Italy August 25, 2020 StumbleUpon Share LeoVegas hits back at Swedish regulations despite Q2 successes August 13, 2020 Share Submit Related Articles Genesis to appeal UKGC’s ‘disproportionate suspension’ July 23, 2020 Mr Green has agreed to pay €7 million to acquire Redbet owner Evoke Gaming, with the deal expected to be completed in Q1 2018 subject to regulatory approval.Evoke Gaming, who’s brands produced revenues of €15.5 million in 2016, includes the likes of Vinnarum casino, Bertolt, MamaMia and Redbet, a sportsbook, casino and poker provider which Mr Green intends to expand in both its existing and future markets.Like Redbet, Vinnarum casino commands a solid position in the Nordic region with a high share of returning customers. Meanwhile, Bertil and MamaMia are bingo sites focused on the Swedish market.Mr Green is acquiring all shares in Evoke Gaming from Bonnier Growth Media for €7 million, to be paid in cash, yet an additional €1.5 million may be payable if certain conditions are met.The acquisition will not have any impact on Mr Green’s EBITDA for 2018. It will, however, have a marginally negative impact on cash flow for next year, but should contribute positively to EBIDTA and cash flow as of 2019, when Mr Green expects to start achieving annual synergies of €2.5 to €3.5 million.Mr Green’s financial targets of an annual growth rate of 20% and an EBITDA margin of 20% by 2019 will be unaffected by the deal. On 30 September, Mr Green’s net cash amounted to SEK 567.6 million.Per Norman, CEO of Mr Green & Co, said: “Evoke Gaming is an ideal fit for our business plan and strategy. We are pursuing our strategy of nurturing a small number of strong brands that can work globally. With Redbet and Mr Green, we have two immensely strong brands addressing different segments and we see major potential to expand Redbet into our existing markets.”Fredrik Staël von Holstein is the CEO of Evoke Gaming, who will remain as head of the company’s operations after the transaction has been completed, and will become a member of Mr Green Ltd’s management team in Malta.He commented: “Evoke Gaming is on the threshold of a significant turnaround. Mr Green will give us the muscles to continue growing internationally in an effective manner.”last_img read more

Top Fueler wrestlers place at Orland, Corning events

first_imgRed Bluff Top Fueler Varsity wrestlers placed at Orland Spider Patch Tournament. Gabe Crump, right, placed second, Tyler Peterson placed third and Adam Peterson placed second. Top Fueler Junior Varsity wrestlers placed in Corning PAL Tournament. Banion Dion placed third, Kyle Azevedo placed second, Corbin Domoe placed second and Julian Philips placed first. 175Care about your community? We do, too.Sign up for our Morning Report newsletter Something went wrong. Please try …last_img

What injury? Sharks’ Erik Karlsson steps up in win over Golden Knights

first_imgSAN JOSE — Sharks defenseman Erik Karlsson took a pass from Gus Nyquist just inside the blue line and held onto the puck for a split second.Karlsson then fired a pass between the legs of Vegas Golden Knights center Paul Stastny toward the slot to a crossing Evander Kane, who redirected the puck past goalie Marc-Andre Fleury with just 17.1 seconds left in the second period, reestablishing a three-goal Sharks lead.It was a vintage play by Karlsson, who didn’t necessarily look like he was still …last_img

Mandela’s Gun: The story of the first weapon against apartheid

first_img2 November 2016The film Mandela’s Gun tells the story of a young Nelson Mandela and the symbolism of his side-arm weapon. A semiautomatic Makarov pistol given to him by Ethiopian Emperor Haile Selassie, the gun came to represent his revolutionary awakening and the start of the armed struggle against apartheid.On his clandestine return to South Africa in 1962, Mandela feared imminent capture by the apartheid government. So he wrapped his gun in foil and heavy-duty military material and buried it under a tin plate on Liliesleaf farm in Rivonia, Johannesburg.The new film, directed by Bafta-winning British director John Irvin (The Dogs of War and Hamburger Hill), uses a mix of documentary footage, interviews with South African anti-apartheid activists, and dramatisations of Mandela’s journey. Mandela’s Gun was filmed in Algeria, Ethiopia, Botswana and South Africa.Mandela is played by renowned local actor Tumisho Masha. After more than 20 major film and TV productions on Mandela, it is the first time a South African actor portrays the iconic leader.Countdown to the opening movie for the inuagural #JoburgFilmFestival Mandela’s Gun happening tonight. 1 city. 20 venues #WeLoveFilm pic.twitter.com/1Thr4cxpDw— Joburg Film Festival (@JoburgFilmFest) October 28, 2016Producer Moroba Nkawe told Variety that the long process of bringing the story to screen was similar to the remarkable, pan-African trip Mandela made as a young freedom fighter in exile. “As we uncovered more information through research, the story grew and…led us to film across the African continent, as we tried to bring to life this amazing, untold journey.”Mandela’s Gun to open on 28th October at #JoburgFilmFestival. Check out the latest scoop on @ScreenAfrica pic.twitter.com/SOXHJaZsc9— Joburg Film Festival (@JoburgFilmFest) October 17, 2016Intent on building an army against the apartheid government, the young Mandela had yet to even shoot a gun, let alone own one. So in exile, travelling across Africa on false passports, he got military training in Algeria and Ethiopia. It was here that he received the Selassie gift. He then moved south to Tanzania and later Botswana, building up tactical and political support from governments and individuals.Returning to South Africa, Mandela gathered together anti-apartheid activists, ANC members and other supporters at Liliesleaf to plan the armed struggle.“Not only were we rediscovering Mandela’s journey and a part of our history that is seldom spoken about,” said Nkawe, “but also learning what a huge debt South Africa owes to the African continent for the support they gave in our liberation struggle.”Interviews in the film include first-hand accounts of that time from Mandela’s comrades, such as Dennis Goldberg and Ronnie Kasrils.The all-South African cast includes Zethu Dlomo, Nick Boraine and Meren Reddy. Desmond Dube plays ANC stalwart Govan Mbeki.The soundtrack by Abdullah Ibrahim includes classic South African music of the period, and new material written for the film.Guns buried 20 paces from the kitchenThe story of the hidden weapon was only revealed after Mandela was released from prison in 1990, during his first visit to Liliesleaf in 30 years. The late veteran journalist Allister Sparks recalled being with Mandela at the time. He told the Mail & Guardian in 2011: “He was reminiscing about all the things that had gone on while he was there. He asked the house maid, ‘Where’s the kitchen? I buried some weapons here 20 paces from the kitchen.“We went to the kitchen and he stepped out his paces but by the time he got to 10 he hit the garden wall. So it was over in the neighbour’s property. We never found it and Nick Wolpe (Liliesleaf Trust chief executive)has been digging ever since.“Negotiations for the sale of the neighbouring property have been underway for over five years. But the gun has still not been found.The film will be on at Ster-Kinekor cinemas in November and December 2016.SouthAfrica.info reporterWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See: Using SouthAfrica.info materiallast_img read more

What’s in store for 2016 corn and soybeans?

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest This “spring,” the weather has gone from snow and 24 degrees to sunny and 80 degrees within one week. This unusual weather leaves many of us wondering what’s in store for the remainder of the growing season.In general, unfavorable weather conditions tend to affect soybean yield much less compared to corn yield. In 2012, when we experienced a hot, dry summer, corn yield was reduced by 23% while soybean yield was only reduced by 8% (see the table below). However, under more optimum weather conditions, corn yield gains are much greater compared to soybean. With more ideal weather in 2013 and 2014, corn yield increased 12-14% while soybean yield only increased 2-8%.Table 1. Corn and soybean grain yield averages for Ohio compared to the 5-year average (data from USDA National Agricultural Statistics Service).Corn (bu/acre)Soybean (bu/acre)2015153 (-1%)50 (+2%)2014176 (+14%)53 (+8%)2013174 (+12%)50 (+2%)2012120 (-23%)45 (-8%)2011153 (-1%)48 (-2%)5-Year Ave.15549SoybeansDespite the weather, the state soybean yield does not tend to fluctuate much. Soybean vegetative and reproductive stages overlap allowing the soybean plant to compensate for short periods of stress (see the figure). In 2012, while plants were stunted and there was an increased number of flower abortion due to hot/dry weather conditions, soybean yield was “saved” in many areas of the state due to rainfall in August and September promoting seed fill.  (This was especially true of our later maturing varieties.)CornWith the weather forecast calling for “slightly-above” normal temperatures and “slightly below precipitation” for the remainder of April and similar conditions for May, this year offers an opportunity to plant corn at optimum calendar dates for yield. The recommended time for planting corns across Ohio is mid-April through about the first week of May. Grain yield and test weight are increased by early plantings, whereas grain moisture is reduced, thereby allowing earlier harvest and reducing drying costs. In central Ohio, yields decline approximately 1 to 1.5 bushels per day for planting delayed beyond the first week of May. Early planting generally produces shorter plants with better standability. Delayed planting increases the risk of frost damage to corn and may subject the crop to greater injury from various late insect and disease pest problems, such as European corn borer and gray leaf spot. With earlier planting, vegetative growth is usually complete and pollination initiated prior to the period of greatest moisture stress in July and grain filling occurs during the periods when solar radiation is high which promotes greater accumulation of dry matter in the grain.No-tillage corn can be planted at the same time as conventional, if soil conditions permit. In reality, however, planting may often need to be delayed several days to permit extra soil drying. Corn should be planted only when soils are dry enough to support traffic without causing soil compaction. The yield reductions resulting from “mudding the seed in” may be much greater than those resulting from a slight planting delay. Moreover, given the weather projections for drier and warmer conditions than normal, even with such delays, the crop may be planted before the optimum plant date window ends.There have been occurrences in past years when early to mid-April planting were adversely affected by an abrupt transition from warm, dry conditions to freezing rains and snow. When dry corn seed absorbs cold water as a result of a cold rain or melting snow, “imbibitional chilling injury” may result. Such injury in corn seed can lead to delayed seedling growth and reduced stands so planting right before such large temperature swings should be avoided.Appropriate planting depths for corn vary with soil and weather conditions. There is a perception that shallow planting depths (less than 1.5 inches) are appropriate for early plantings — when soil conditions are usually cool and moist — because seed will emerge more rapidly due to warmer soil temperatures closer to the surface. However, planting shallower than 1.5 inches is generally not recommended at any planting date or in any soil type. Recent Ohio studies that evaluated corn response to seeding depth provide no evidence to support shallow plantings. For normal conditions plant corn at 1.5 to 2-inches deep to provide frost protection and allow for adequate root development. When corn is planted 1.5 to 2 inches deep, the nodal roots develop about 0.5 to 0.75 inches below the soil surface. At planting depths less than 1 inch, the nodal roots develop at or just below the soil surface. Excessively shallow planting can cause slow, uneven emergence due to soil moisture variation, and rootless corn (“floppy corn syndrome”) when hot, dry weather inhibits nodal root development. Shallow plantings increase stress and result in less developed roots, smaller ears and reduced yields.last_img read more

Mato Grosso Cotton Planting Up

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest By Chris ClaytonDTN Ag Policy EditorCUIABA, Brazil (DTN) — While corn remains the major safrinha crop for Brazilian farmers, more cotton acreage is being planted in Mato Grosso this spring, as well.Over the past two years, cotton planting has increased by nearly one-third for the safrinha (second crop) in Mato Grosso. The Institute for Mato Grosso Economics of Agriculture (IMEA) forecasts Mato Grosso farmers will plant 1.1 million hectares (2.71 million acres) of cotton this spring. The Brazilian Association of Cotton Producers (Abrapa) forecast cotton acreage to grow to 1.4 million hectares (3.46 million acres). Mato Grosso accounts for about 88% of Brazil’s cotton production.China is the top market for Brazilian cotton, and a 25% tariff on U.S. cotton creates expectation that continued trade disruption between the U.S. and China will be to Brazil’s advantage.Still, corn acreage in Mato Grosso is projected to remain steady at 4.7 million hectares (11.6 million acres). Harvest is projected at 28.6 million metric tons, or just under 1.13 billion bushels, according to IMEA.Farmers in other states rely more heavily on corn than cotton for the safrinha crop. Overall, Brazil is expected to plant 12.6 million hectares (31.1 million acres) of corn.Farms owned by Brazil’s largest agribusiness, Amaggi Group, are shifting acreage more heavily to cotton from corn this spring. A manager at an Amaggi farm outside Campo Novo do Parecis told a group of American farmers late last week that the farm was planting 98,800 acres into cotton and just 12,350 acres into corn. That’s basically a reversal from last year when the farm planted 74,100 acres into corn.Amaggi has seven farms in Mato Grosso with 300,000 planted hectares (741,000 acres) in the state, as well as 90,000 hectares (222,300 acres) in mandatory reserve.The manager said all three Amaggi farms in the south-central region of Mato Grosso were moving more heavily into cotton. Amaggi also is increasing its investments in cotton ginning and storage, as well.One possible reason for some farmers planting more cotton this year in Mato Grosso is a new state tax of 0.50 reals on each bag of corn sold, which equates to 2.2 bushels. Farmers are paid 19 reals per bag, ($2.33 a bushel right now based on the exchange rate of $1 equaling 3.7 reals).As Brazilian farmers boost their cotton acreage, the National Cotton Council in Memphis released some economic analysis for 2019 over the weekend. NCC projects U.S. farmers will plant 14.5 million acres of cotton, up 2.9% from a year ago, according to Jody Campiche, NCC’s vice president of economics and policy analysis.World cotton production is estimated to increase by 7 million bales in 2019 to 125.5 million bales, which would be the highest level since the 2011 crop. Each bale amounts to 480 pounds.NCC notes that, “Prior to the implementation of tariffs, the United States was in a prime position to capitalize on the increase in Chinese cotton exports.” Now, Brazil, Australia and other countries have gained market share. Vietnam was the top market in 2018 for U.S. cotton, followed by China and Mexico.China has lowered its reserves and is expected to increase imports to 11.1 million bales, NCC forecasts. The U.S. also is expected to increase cotton exports to 17.4 million bales in 2019, which would be the second only to 2005 if realized.Chris Clayton can be reached at [email protected] him on Twitter @ChrisClaytonDTN(AG/BAS)© Copyright 2019 DTN/The Progressive Farmer. All rights reserved.last_img read more