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7 ag stories you might have missed this week - Sept. 4, 2020

Net farm income rise fueled by government payments, farmers wholeheartedly back Trump and Young Farmer podcast.

Need a quick look at ag news? Here's seven stories you might have missed this week.

1. Net farm income for 2020 is expected to rise $19 billion from 2019 to $102.7 billion in 2020, which is boosted by 64% higher government payments as well as lower production expenses. Cash receipts from cattle and calves are expected to fall $5.1 billion (7.7%) in nominal terms in 2020. Milk receipts are expected to decrease $900 million (2.2%) during the year and hog cash receipts down $3.5 billion (15.9%). – Farm Futures

2. U.S. trade aid flowed mainly to large farms, according to an analysis of USDA records obtained by CNBC through the Freedom of Information Act. The top half of recipients collected 95% of total payments in the $28 billion Market Facilitation Program. The average payment for the top tenth of recipients was $164,813, a stark contrast from the average payment of $2,469.49 for the bottom half of recipients. – CNBC

3. Three-quarters of U.S. farmers say they will vote for President Donald Trump in the upcoming November presidential election, despite trade disruptions, tumbling grain prices and rising farm bankruptcies. – Farm Futures

4. Microplastics, loosely defined as plastic pieces smaller than 5 millimeters across, or roughly the size of a small grain of rice, have made their mark on the global ecosystem. One estimate suggested that 107,000 to 730,000 tons of microplastics could be dumped onto agricultural soils in the U.S. and Europe every year. Microplastics arrive on farms through processed sewage sludge used for fertilizer, plastic mulches, and are even intentionally added as slow-release fertilizers and protective seed coatings. – Environmental Health News

5. The Purdue University-CME Group Ag Economy Barometer rose to a reading of 144, 26 points higher than a month earlier as farmer sentiment improved markedly in August 2020. The improvement in farmer sentiment this month was underpinned by expectations for excellent crop yields, as indicated in USDA’s August Crop Production report, and nearly across the board rallies in key ag commodity prices that took place in August. – Farm Futures

6. The U.S. 6th Circuit Court of Appeals in Cincinnati rejected a request from groups backed by the Michigan Farm Bureau to block a state order requiring COVID-19 testing to protect farm and food processing workers. – The Detroit News

7. The American Agriculturalist Young Farmer Podcast checks in with Bryan Harnish who grows 600 acres of field crops, watermelons, tobacco and CBD in Pequea, Pennsylvania, and Karl Shlagel, co-owner of Shlagel Farms in Waldorf, Maryland. – American Agriculturalist

And your bonus.

Enjoy photos from the River Ridge Farm where the Doub family grew colorful zinnias, sunflowers and wildflowers this summer. – Winston Salem Journal

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