Feedlot Update - Oct. 2, 2013

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Feedlot Update

Oct. 2, 2013

Feedlot rule post-hearing comment rebuttal period ends Oct. 7

Following the Sept. 9 hearing on proposed changes and updates to the 7020 feedlot rule and related rules, a 20-day post-hearing comment period ended Sept. 30. A five-working day rebuttal period started Oct. 1 and ends Oct. 7. Additional or new evidence may not be submitted during this period. The comments that were submitted during the 20-day, post-hearing comment period, together with the written comments and exhibits that were submitted into the record during the public hearing, are available for review at the Office of Administrative Hearings and are posted on the MPCA's feedlot rule-making webpage. Following the rebuttal period, Judge Ann O'Reilly is scheduled to issue her findings within 30 days. They will focus on the agency's rule-making authority, the procedures followed, and reasonableness of the proposed changes.

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MACFO convention Oct. 14-16 in St. Cloud

The 12th annual conference of the Minnesota Association of County Feedlot Officers (MACFO) will be Oct. 14-16 at the St. Cloud Holiday Inn. The agenda includes presentations on construction, inspections, bio-security, cost-share, permitting, and compliance. On Wednesday there will be a tour of a feedlot and demonstration of MinnFARM (Minnesota feedlot annualized runoff model). MACFO represents counties participating in a cooperative arrangement with the Minnesota Pollution Control Agency and county government to administer Minnesota's feedlot rule. County feedlot programs are responsible for the implementation of feedlot rules and regulations in 54 Minnesota counties including most of the major livestock counties.

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MPCA registered for livestock and ag trade shows

ag expo 2013

The MPCA feedlot program has registered for trade show space at several upcoming livestock organization conventions. Information and staff will be present at the Midwest Dairy Expo Dec. 2-4 in St. Cloud, and at Pork Congress Jan. 14-15 in Minneapolis. Registration is pending for the Minnesota State Cattlemen's convention and trade show Dec. 12-14 in Alexandria. The MPCA has also registered for trade show space at the Minnesota Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts Dec. 1-3 at the Doubletree in Bloomington, and the Ag Expo Jan. 8-9 at the Verizon Center in Mankato.

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News briefs

Remer appointed feedlot program engineer

Allison Remer of the MPCA St. Paul office has moved from the compliance and enforcement staff to feedlot program engineer. Prior to joining the MPCA staff in April 2012, she was with the Stearns County feedlot program for nearly five years. Allie earned an AS in engineering at Itasca Community College, a BS in civil engineering from the University of North Dakota, and soon will complete an MS in the Bioproducts and Biosystems Engineering department at the U of M. 

allie remer

Renville SWCD posts farm bill and conservation technician positions

Renville County Soil & Water Conservation District has two positions open for technicians to promote and implement federal farm bill conservation programs and State of Minnesota Easement Programs, and one position open for a full-time conservation technician. The first two are full-time grant funded positions with benefits. Salary range is $33,500 - $38,000 and a four-year degree in natural resources or related field is preferred. Closing date is Oct. 11, 2013.  Experience in conservation delivery is preferred for the full-time conservation technician position, and four-year degree in natural resources or related field with Arc GIS experience preferred. Position is responsible for WCA, eLink reporting, grant writing, state cost-share program administration and other conservation delivery programs. Salary range is $38,500 - $45,000+ with full benefits. Closing date is Dec. 11, 2013. For full position descriptions and application instructions see www.renvilleswcd.com or contact the office at 320-523-1559. EOE.

Latest WebEx posted on feedlot program training page

The latest WebEx training and education video for county feedlot staff is now available on the training webpage. It features a presentation by Dave Wall on the recent MPCA nitrogen study, and an update by Kim Brynildson on the 7020 feedlot rule update process. 

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Plan ahead for post-harvest manure land application

fall manure land application

After fall harvest, many farmers will be applying manure to cropland and begin planning for the spring planting season. Feedlots with 300 or more animal units must have an updated manure management plan, except those who use a Commercial Animal Waste Technician to apply all their manure. Manure management plans and professional applicators help ensure the efficient and effective use of livestock manure as crop fertilizer while preventing it from contaminating wetlands, streams and lakes. Farmers are also encouraged to plan ahead for the possibility of weather impacts on land application. (See "Managing manure land application during adverse weather conditions"). More information about manure management plans, specific record-keeping requirements, and local contacts is available on the MPCA feedlot nutrient and manure management webpage, and the University of Minnesota Extension manure application webpage, or by calling your county feedlot officer or regional MPCA feedlot program representative.

Wet spring posed additional challenges

Weather conditions experienced during the spring of 2013 in some areas of the state proved challenging for farmers due to excessive moisture and cooler temperatures. Delayed spring manure applications resulted in additional challenges for some farmers that needed to manage their manure storage to ensure capacities were not exceeded. Also, some fields were never planted, and as a result some were planted to a cover crop. Planning ahead this fall can address some of these issues for the 2014 crop year. A second year nitrogen credit on a field that received manure in the fall of 2012 or the spring of 2013 must be accounted for in your nitrogen budget. The University of Minnesota Extension has information on recommended nitrate tests, which might prove a valuable tool in accounting for residual soil nitrogen. For more information, contact Paul Brietzke, MPCA-Rochester office, 507-206-2616, paul.brietzke@state.mn.us. 

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MDA taking comments on Nitrogen Fertilizer Management Plan

The Minnesota Department of Agriculture (MDA) is accepting public comments through Nov. 1 on proposed revisions to the state’s Nitrogen Fertilizer Management Plan (NFMP). The NFMP is a blueprint for prevention or minimization of the impacts of nitrogen fertilizer on groundwater in Minnesota. MDA has been making revisions to the NFMP to reflect current activities, interagency water protection programs and implementation work, and to better align it with current water resource conditions and programs. MDA is requesting comments on the 2013 plan. Public listening sessions were held in September at Crookston, Wadena, St. Cloud, Rochester, and Roseville.

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Pork producers, custom applicators on alert for PED

Pork producers and custom applicators are being alerted about the risk of spreading Porcine Epidemic Diarrhea (PED) through equipment used to pump and land apply manure from all farms but especially those with pigs exhibiting clinical signs of the disease. PED can be spread through oral-fecal contact, manure contaminated boots, clothing, birds and wildlife, transport trailers and other equipment. PED is a viral enteric swine ONLY disease with clinical symptoms of diarrhea, fever, vomiting, and death (age dependent). PED has been confirmed on more than 500 swine herds in the United States. Spread of the virus continues, and it is both a good animal husbandry practice and a good neighbor policy for all pork farmers with pigs exhibiting clinical signs of PED to obtain a confirmed diagnosis and immediately establish enhanced biosecurity practices to avoid spreading the virus within their own animals and (or) to neighboring swine herds. A factsheet (available here) emphasizes the need for the manure applicator to communicate closely with the pork producers when pumping manure on a farm to reduce the risk of transferring this virus by manure handling equipment either from or to the farm.

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Cover crops benefit soil for conservation, production

radish cover crop

(Original story in Sept. 19 Agri-News) NORTHFIELD, Minn. — John and Debbie Becker, and Kurt Schrader were among the farmers who shared their experiences with conservation tillage and cover crops at a Cultivating Conservation in the Cannon River Watershed meeting held Sept. 12. Schrader grew tillage radishes in 2012 and grew the best-looking corn ever on the field following the radishes. The radishes stayed green into November and had rotted to nothing by May 25 when he planted. The event was sponsored by the Cannon River Watershed Partnership, Minnesota FarmWise and local farm families. About 40 people attended. Tom Coffman, district conservationist for the Natural Resources Conservation Service in Rice County, said the county has started a Soil Health Discussion Group. 


The Beckers also talked about their buffer. A one rod buffer is required, but they used the Clean Water Fund Buffer program to put in a 60-foot-long buffer along a ditch that crosses their property. They are able to hay the buffer. It was seeded down in spring 2010 and they took off 3.6 tons per acre of round bales last year, John said. They feed the hay to their cattle. It’s nice to have a field border to drive on, Debbie said. Also, it filters the water before it flows overland into the drainage ditch.

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EQB Monitor now available online via GovDelivery

eqb logo

The EQB Monitor, a biweekly publication of the Environmental Quality Board, is now available online via GovDelivery. The Monitor lists descriptions and deadlines for Environmental Assessment Worksheets, Environmental Impact Statements and other notices. It is published bi-weekly; the next issue will be Oct. 14. See the Monitor web page to sign up for e-mail delivery, or call 651-757-2683.

Seuffert named EQB executive director

Will Seuffert has been selected as the executive director for the Environmental Quality Board. Will has been serving as a Senior Policy Adviser for Gov. Mark Dayton for the past several years, focused on legislative policy and budget matters related to energy, environment, commerce, agriculture, education, higher education, and veterans affairs. In this capacity, he has worked closely with all the cabinet agencies that are represented by the EQB, and has great familiarity with the range of issues that come before the Board, and demonstrated skills in promoting interagency problem-solving, communication and coordination on environmental issues. Prior to his work for Gov. Dayton, Will was committee administrator for the Minnesota Senate Energy, Utilities, Technology and Communications Committee, and a legislative assistant to Sen. Terri Bonoff.  Will has a BA in Political Science from Eckerd College in Florida, and a Master’s degree in International Peace and Conflict from American University in Washington D.C. Will’s office will be located within the MPCA St. Paul building near the EQB staff.

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In the news

Hearings on state water quality Oct. 7-8

State residents and landowners interested in water quality are encouraged to attend upcoming Minnesota house of Representative committee meetings. Testimony will be heard on nitrogen in surface waters, condition of state's groundwater and the Minnesota Nutrient Reduction Strategy, Clean Water Legacy funding. The Environment, Natural Resources and Agriculture Finance Committee, chaired by Rep. Jean Wagenius, will hold a hearing at 1 p.m. Monday, Oct. 7, and Tuesday, Oct. 8, at 8:30 a.m., in Room 5 at the State Office Building. For an up-to-date recorded message giving committee meeting times and agendas, call 651-296-9283.

Agreement reached to improve Iowa’s CAFO permit and compliance program
EPA news release, 9/11/13
New Organic Advisory Task Force members represent wide array of interests
MDA news release, 9/24/13
Brooten dairy farm bringing cheese plant to central Minnesota
WJON radio, 9/23/13

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Oct. 1-5: World Dairy Expo, Madison, Wisc.
Oct. 14-16: Minnesota Association of County Feedlot Officers, St. Cloud Holiday Inn.
Oct. 17-20: Minnesota Beef Expo, State Fair coliseum, St. Paul.
Nov. 15-16: Minnesota Lamb and Wool Producers conference, Thumper Pond Resort, Otter Tail.
Nov. 29-30: Bison fall auction and fundamentals education, Albany.
Dec. 1-3: MN Association of Soil and Water Conservation Districts, Doubletree, Bloomington.
Dec. 2-4: Midwest Dairy Expo, Rivers Edge Convention Center, St. Cloud Civic.
Dec. 12-14: MN State Cattlemen's Association convention, Arrowwood, Alexandria.
Jan. 8-9: Ag Expo, Verizon Center, Mankato.
Jan. 10-11, 2014: Minnesota Elk Breeders Association conference, Rivers Edge Convention Center, St. Cloud.
Jan. 14-15, 2014: Pork Congress, Minneapolis Convention Center.

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Share the news

The MPCA Feedlot Update welcomes news submissifrom partners about, projects, people, and upcoming events. Email submissito forrest.peterson@state.mn.us. Please note that the MPCA has switched to a new service, called GovDelivery, to deliver the Feedlot Update. To ensure delivery of these messages, please add mpca@public.govdelivery.com to your address book or safe sender list. Past issues of Feedlot Update are available on the feedlot program publications webpage.

Forrest Peterson
Public Information Officer
MPCA-Willmar office