7 ag stories you might have missed this week - Sept. 25, 2020

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Child labor, hemp harvest, MFP payments and land rent among news of the week.

Missed some ag news this week? Here are seven stories to catch you up.

1. Purdue University Extension agricultural economists Jim Mintert and Michael Langemeier estimate net return to land will remain well below average cash rent for both 2020 and 2021. Illinois land values are generally holding firm compared to where they were in 2019, according to the Illinois Society of Professional Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers. – Indiana Prairie Farmer, Prairie Farmer

2. The U.S. House passed a stopgap funding bill to keep the government operating through Dec. 11 after both parties in Congress and officials at the White House struck a deal to provide aid to farmers and food assistance for low-income families. – Farm Futures

3. An estimated 400,000 to 500,000 child laborers harvest the country's produce, according to the nonprofit Association of Farmworker Opportunity Programs. The children struggle to get education while working in the fields. – NBC News

4. The bulk of Market Facilitation Program payments went to the top 10% of farms, according to the Environmental Working Group. A study of $5 billion in payments through June 30 under the Coronavirus Food Assistance Program shows the top 1% of farms receiving 22% of the money, for an average payment of $352,432. The smallest 80% of farms got 23% of the aid, with the average payment $4,677, according to the advocacy group. – Bloomberg

5. Over a period of four decades, Mann Family Farms near Marshalltown put up 10 grain bins and accessory items to store 285,000 bushels of corn. But in less than 30 minutes on Aug. 10, a derecho packing straight-line winds of 106 mph demolished the entire complex, including both 92-foot grain legs. – Wallace's Farmer

6. The U.S.-owned and U.K.-based firm Oxitec announced it has developed a fall armyworm that has a self-limiting gene introduced into the male of the species. Once the male mates with a female, the resulting egg dies. Field trials of the technology are underway in Brazil. The aim is to stop a pest that is devastating corn and rice crops. – Wired

7. It's time for Robert Johnstone to harvest his first hemp crop. It's a time-consuming process. He starts by cutting the stems and then trimming off water leaves. - KWCH

And your bonus.

On March 11, 1993, Donny Manning climbed into a grain bin on a cold morning to poke the mass of grain lose. The grain gave way and held him for 52 minutes before local rescue crews tore into the bin and he was frantically dug out. He walked away. His family knows it was a miracle.  -  The York News-Times

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