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Our Spirit-filled walk doesn't make us sons, the Holy Spirit does. And "sonship" is the root of freedom.

- Daniel Bush

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 Agriculture News


A new report says low commodity prices and weak farm incomes are continuing to hamper the rural economy in parts of 10 Plains and Midwestern states....

     OMAHA, Neb. (AP) - A new report says low commodity prices and weak farm incomes are continuing to hamper the rural economy in parts of 10 Plains and Midwestern states. The Rural Mainstreet Index for the region fell to from 42.2 in August to 39.6 in September, its lowest level in 2017. The index released Thursday ranges between 0 and 100, with any number under 50 indicating a shrinking economy.
     Creighton University economist Ernie Goss, who oversees the survey of bankers, says more than half of the bankers reported that they have restructured farm loans. Nearly 20 percent have increased their collateral requirements. Bankers reported a 2.1 percent increase in farm loan defaults over the past year.
     Bankers from Colorado, Illinois, Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming were surveyed.


     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Drought in western North Dakota has eased significantly over the past week. The latest U.S. Drought Monitor shows a reduction in extreme and exceptional drought from 19 percent to less than 4 percent, due to heavy rains. The northwestern corner of the state is the only area that remains in those categories of drought, which are the two worst. Overall, 87 percent of North Dakota is in some stage of drought, down from 93 percent last week.
     Seventy-two-percent of South Dakota is in some stage of drought, unchanged over the week. Areas in severe or extreme drought declined slightly, from 44 percent to 40 percent. The federal Agriculture Department reports that South Dakota leads major-producing states in very poor to poor ratings for sorghum, corn and soybean crops.


     BOISE, Idaho (AP) - Taiwan has once again agreed to purchase a large share of U.S. wheat over the next two years, with most of it coming from Idaho, North Dakota and Montana.  Idaho Gov. C.L. "Butch" Otter and Taiwanese milling industry officials signed the $576 million agreement Wednesday at the Idaho Capitol in Boise. That totals 1.8 million metric tons of U.S. wheat in 2018 and 2019 combined.
     According to the Idaho Wheat Commission, Taiwan mostly buys Idaho's soft white wheat to use in cookies, crackers and noodles. However, Taiwan has also been buying more of the state's hard red wheat to use in bread.
     This is the 11th time leaders with the Taiwan Flour Millers Association - which imports wheat on behalf of all 20 Taiwanese flour mills - have pledged to buy U.S. wheat.  The United States supplies more than 80 percent of Taiwan's total wheat imports each year.


     NEWBURG, N.D. (AP) - Authorities say a 3-year-old boy has died in a farm accident in northern North Dakota.  The Highway Patrol says Joseph Henry, of Souris, and his young son were riding in a tractor when the cab's left door opened and the boy tumbled out. KFGO reports officials say Burke Henry was run over by the tractor's rear tires. He died at the scene.  The accident happened in Bottineau County about two miles north of Newburg about 11 a.m. Tuesday.



   (Copyright 2017 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)


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