South Dakota Farmers Union, a nearly century-old family farm organization, will sponsor a wide range of activities during ‘Farmers Union Day’ at the South Dakota State Fair Saturday, Sept. 1. Activities the annual Farmer’s Share Luncheon, a debate between the candidates for the state Public Utilities Commission, birthday cake to honor the U.S. Department of Agriculture, and other events.
South Dakota Farmers Union and the South Dakota Rural Electric Association will co-host a debate Saturday, Sept. 1, from 3:15 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. on the Dakotland Stage at the South Dakota State Fairgrounds featuring candidates for the South Dakota Public Utilities Commission.
For the second straight year the FFA chapter from Wolsey-Wessington High School has been crowned champions of the Team up to Safety quiz bowl competition sponsored by South Dakota Farmers Union. Wolsey-Wessington beat the FFA team from Lyman in the finals 200-150 in the farm safety quiz bowl held Tuesday during the Dakotafest farm show at Mitchell.
Rep. Kristi Noem has declined an invitation to participate in a debate with her Democratic challenger Matt Varilek which was scheduled for Saturday, Sept. 1, during the South Dakota State Fair in Huron. The scheduled debate was organized and sponsored by South Dakota Farmers Union, a family farm organization based in Huron. Matt Varilek last month confirmed his attendance at the State Fair debate.
South Dakota Farmers Union will host its third annual ‘Team up to Safety’ quiz bowl finals Tuesday, Aug. 21, during the DakotaFest Farm Show at Mitchell. The quiz bowl will be held from 2:30 p.m. to 4:30 p.m. at the South Dakota State University tent on the DakotaFest grounds. Students from four South Dakota FFA chapters will compete for cash prizes in the annual farm safety quiz bowl event. The four-person teams will answer questions related to health and safety on the farm or ranch in a Jeopardy!-style quiz bowl.
Over 85,000 acres of farmland in Beadle County were eligible in 2011 for what’s called ‘Prevented Planting’ payments. Those payments from the federal government to farmers totaled over $21.1 million in 2011 alone to support producers who were unable to plant, mostly because of excess water in fields. That was one of several striking statistics released Monday by the South Dakota Farmers Union at a pair of meetings hosted in Huron and Britton. The Navigating Water Management meeting was held to address water management concerns related to farming and ranching in South Dakota.
Drought is on the mind of many farmers and ranchers this summer, but the opposite problem was the focus of many agriculture producers over the last four years. According to the federal Farm Service Agency (FSA), in 2008, over 323,000 acres of farmland was eligible for prevented planting payments from the federal government because farmers were unable to plant them, mostly because of excess water. The prevented planting numbers went up to over 517,000 in 2009 and topped 1.5 million acres in 2010. These prevented planting acres cost the federal government over $558 million from 2008-2010 in the form of indemnity payments which is income protection for farmers, a fraction of what production value would have been over those years if a crop would’ve been planted and harvested.