Farm business analysis and benchmarking

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest As we turn the page from winter to spring we welcome the longer days and the warmth the sunshine brings us. In farm country this is the time of year that hope is supposed to spring eternal.As farmers head to the fields, they may not be as optimistic as previous years. Although we’ve seen a nice winter rally in the grain markets, USDA forecasts are still predicting net farm incomes to decrease to the lowest levels since 2006. Much of the talk on the winter meeting circuit focused on the importance of knowing your cost of production.OSU Extension’s Barry Ward is forecasting higher energy prices with most other input costs staying flat to slightly higher. Rising interest rates, high health care costs, a strong dollar, and the potential for uncertainty with our trading partners are doing little to brighten the mood. The dim outlook coupled with already razor thin profit margins are starting to remind some of the more seasoned producers of the 1980s farm crisis.The farm crisis of the 1980s saw land values plummet as many operations were unable to pay high interest rates and saw their farms foreclosed on. It is estimated that nationwide around 300,000 farms were put out of business during the decade. The fallout led to the creation of the Farm Financial Standards Task Force in 1989. Their job was to develop standardized guidelines for agricultural producers. Today, the name has changed to the Farm Financial Standards Council (FFSC), which currently uses 21 financial guidelines to evaluate farm data. These guidelines are used by banks and lenders to help make decisions on extending credit to farms. While the backstory might be a little bit of the unknown to producers, the terms liquidity, working capital, solvency, and several others are not.While farmers have been relying on OSU Extension for help with developing nutrient management plans, herbicide plans, and analyzing data from on farm research, they have not yet realized the full potential of farm financial planning. A grant was awarded from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) to expand access to farm business analysis and benchmarking resources with the goal of helping Ohio farmers gain a better understanding of their financial health. The program gives producers a farm finance scorecard that shows how they stack up in each of the FFSC’s 21 categories. These numbers are then shown on graphs showing the trend from previous years for that specific operation, as well as their standings compared to the national average of all farms that submit their records. Benchmark reports are used to identify successes and opportunities to improve. Each farm that participates in the analysis program will receive personalized benchmark reports that include their farm’s numbers. These individual values are then highlighted to show where their farm falls in the benchmark report for each item compared to participating Ohio farms.Farm Business Analysis isn’t just for farms focusing on grain production. There is a large network of dairy farms, primarily in Eastern Ohio, already participating. When multiple enterprises are present, the analysis can help producers allocate expenses between different areas in their operation. Whether the farm wants to compare their crops on owned versus rented land, their crop operation compared to their livestock, or the profitability of an individual crop or custom farming operation there are tools available to analyze the data provided. It has been estimated that the value of the benchmarking data, financial scorecard, and enterprise analysis is well over $1000.Thanks to the grant from USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture, OSU Extension is able to provide this service at a cost of only $100. Several lenders have also stepped up and agreed to reimburse operations that successfully complete an analysis.If you would like more information on the program, visit our website at There you will find the completed business summaries for previous years and other resources that can help farm businesses. The Farm Business Analysis team has also grown from the original location in Mahoning County with the addition of four new regional technicians. To learn more about Farm Business Analysis, contact the technician closest to you:Defiance County: Clint Schroeder, 419.782.4771, [email protected] County: David Grum, 740.670.5315, [email protected] County: Sharon Harris, 937.440.3945, [email protected] County: Trish Levering, 740.474.7534, [email protected] County (Headquarters): Christina Benton, 330.533.5538, [email protected] Coordinator: Haley Shoemaker, 330.533.5538, [email protected] Specialist: Dianne Shoemaker, 330.533.5538, [email protected]last_img read more

BJP stages walkout in Rajasthan House

first_imgThe Opposition BJP members staged a walkout in the Rajasthan Assembly on Friday after raising the issues of illegal mining and transport of ‘bajri’ (riverbed sand), despite the ban imposed by the Supreme Court, and the cancellation of appointment process for 2,500 community health officers in the National Health Mission (NHM).Speaker C.P. Joshi adjourned the proceedings for half an hour after the walkout, when Parliamentary Affairs Minister Shanti Dhariwal asserted that the State government had a “right to reply” to the Opposition’s allegations.‘No concrete step’Attacking the Congress government through an adjournment motion, Deputy Leader of the Opposition Rajendra Rathore said though the Governor’s address to the House on January 17 had admitted of the ‘bajri’ mafia operating in the State, no concrete step had been taken to stop the illegal activity. People in the State were still waiting for the sandstone policy that the State government had promised, he said.Senior BJP leader and former Medical & Health Minister Kali Charan Saraf raised the issue of NHM appointments during zero hour. He said the entrance exam for vacancies of community health officers, scheduled for June 22, was cancelled and the NHM human resource cell’s officials were suspended hurriedly. He said the reasons behind the government’s action “taken in a haste” were not clear.On the issue of restrictions imposed on journalists’ movements in the Assembly building, Mr. Joshi said the boycott of press gallery would not affect the flow of information from the House as the proceedings were telecast live on YouTube. He said the decision to limit journalists’ access had been taken as per the rules.last_img read more

Uttar Pradesh Muslim Thakurs keen to retain Rajput legacy at the cost of Islamic identity

first_imgSajjan Khan, of Ajitganj village, prays daily at a temple built by his father Mijjan Khan and frequently goes on pilgrimages to Hindu holy places. Like many converted Rajputs in the area, he follows a Hindu way of life and seeks to emphasise the Thakur identity.Sajjan Khan prays at a,Sajjan Khan, of Ajitganj village, prays daily at a temple built by his father Mijjan Khan and frequently goes on pilgrimages to Hindu holy places. Like many converted Rajputs in the area, he follows a Hindu way of life and seeks to emphasise the Thakur identity.Sajjan Khan prays at a temple at his house every day, likes to be called Sajjan Thakur and yet is a staunch Muslim. The forefathers of the wealthy 40-year-old farmer from Ajitganj village in Uttar Pradesh’s Fatehpur district were Bais Rajputs who had converted to Islam.But Sajjan puts more store by his lineage than his ancestors’ acquired faith. The idol-worshipping Khan couldn’t care less about being branded a kafir (unbeliever) by the village maulvi. “I don’t care about our community leaders. We are Thakurs by blood. Besides, we are treated as inferiors among the Muslims, so why shouldn’t we remain loyal to our roots?” he argues defiantly.Khan is not a chance deviant. Hundreds of Muslim families whose Rajput ancestors had converted to Islam six centuries ago prefer to be called Thakur Sahibs in villages of central Uttar Pradesh. And it is not just about titles.The “Muslim Thakurs” live, dress and even worship as Rajputs do- in stark contrast to the “original Muslims”. It was in the 14th and 15th centuries that three Rajput sects-the Gautam, Bais and Dikhit-converted to Islam and settled in Fatehpur, Banda and Unnao districts. These people, particularly the Gautam Muslims, still cling to their Hindu origins.Rather proudly too. Declares Hasan Thakur, the pradhan of Missi village in Bindki, the erstwhile headquarters of the Gautam Thakurs of Fatehpur: “Our community members do not keep long beards and refuse to obey fatwas, the men don’t wear lungi, the women avoid the burqa (veil).”advertisementHasan Thakur, a village pradhan, has considerable clout among both the Gautam Muslims and the Gautam Thakurs. Proud of Thakur traditions, he is determined to assimilate the two groups even at the risk of religious ostracism by the maulvis.Sajjan’s father Mijjan Thakur affirms the cultural anomaly: “We have worn the dhoti and kurtas for ages. Why should we change?” The women too opted for the Hindu sari rather than the more community-specific salwar-kameez and burqa.This fusion of culture goes much beyond clothes. Rajput traditions have eclipsed the religious divide and forged a common identity for the Hindu Gautam Thakurs and the Gautam Muslims. Says Hasan: “The Gautam Thakurs are like one big family.” Hindu Gautam Thakurs participate in Muslim Gautam functions and vice versa.”When we meet, we touch the feet of the elders among the Gautam Thakurs just as younger people from their side would touch my feet,” says septuagenarian Gautam Nasruddin Khan, the head of Sabada village in nearby Banda district.These intercommunity functions include religious ones as well. The Gautam Muslims help organise Holi milans, Ram Lilas and kirtans. The wedding ceremonies of the former Rajputs retain many Hindu rituals: the bridegroom sports a safa (headgear) like the Hindus do and a raucous band is a must in a wedding procession as are firecrackers.In this cultural melee, it is not unusual to find multireligious practices. Sajjan, who is yet to visit Mecca, recently went on a pilgrimage to Chitrakoot. Hasan Thakur too frequently goes to Vaishno Devi with his wife and children.The Gautams’ relations with their fellow Muslims have faded into irrelevance as community bonds take precedence even in times of communal riots. If Gautams face a threat to their lives and property, the Gautam Muslims rush to protect them, and if Gautam Muslims are outnumbered in any particular place the Gautam Thakurs swell their ranks. “For more than 50 years in Independent India, none of our brothers has been killed in communal riots,” says Hasan.Haji Abdul Warsi, of Ajitganj village, proudly displays a shijre (family tree) tracing his Gautam Thakur lineagePolitically too, the Gautam Thakurs- from both sides of the communal divide-form a cohesive and substantial vote bank. The Gautam Muslims number more than a lakh though that is a fraction of the Gautam Thakur population.Hasan Thakur’s considerable influence among both the Thakurs and the Gautam Muslims brought former prime ministers Chandra Shekhar and V.P. Singh to his house to solicit votes. Hasan’s politics are dictated entirely by community concerns.”If there is a contest between a Muslim and a Gautam Thakur, our first choice will be a Gautam Thakur,” he explains. The Thakur clan’s views on political issues-generally pronounced by Hasan- are uniform, and more importantly for the political parties, they vote as a community.advertisementHistorical links are sometimes highlighted to forge a common identity. The Muslim group wants to build a memorial for Raja Bahrawat Singh, the Argal king who converted to Islam. Another concerns the martyrdom of 52 Gautam Thakur clansmen of Fatehpur who were hanged by the British for involvement in the 1857 war of independence. The Government has built a park around the tree on which the soldiers were hanged, but the Gautam Muslims want to develop it into a grand memorial.Instead of weakening with passage of time, the ties among the Gautam Thakurs are showing all signs of strengthening. The Muslim families are keen to bring “the family” closer through marriages. “I am making a lot of effort to unite the family once again, but society does not allow us to do so,” says the patriarchal Nasruddin Khan.Such clanish tendencies do not go down well with the more orthodox among the Muslims. “Their Hindu origins and customs are a major hurdle to rotibetities (economic and marital),” says Mohit Siddiqui, an “original” Muslim of Bindki.The segregation leaves the Thakur Muslims unmoved. They generally marry among their own group or at most with other converted groups. “The original Muslims look down upon us because we are converted and taunt us for behaving like Hindus. But we don’t mind,” remarked Mushtaq, a Gautam Muslim working at the Central Ordnance Depot in Kanpur.While the Gautam Muslims are unabashedly seeking to reunite with the Thakurs, the Bais and Dikhit groups are doing so more unobtrusively. But whatever the degree of caste affiliations, all three of these unique communities stick to their traditional Hindu way of life and are desperately seeking to claim a Thakur identity. It is, in many ways, a reconversion not of faith but of culture.last_img read more

Roger Federer to play Madrid Open after 2-year absence

first_imgManny Pacquiao discouraging son from going into boxing Don’t miss out on the latest news and information. Sports Related Videospowered by AdSparcRead Next The 37-year-old Federer didn’t play in clay tournaments for two seasons, but said he will be back this year as he prepares for his first French Open appearance since 2015.Federer is the second most successful player at the Madrid Open with three titles, behind five-time champion Rafael Nadal. Federer’s last Madrid title came in 2012.FEATURED STORIESSPORTSPrivate companies step in to help SEA Games hostingSPORTSUrgent reply from Philippine ‍football chiefSPORTSPalace wants Cayetano’s PHISGOC Foundation probed over corruption chargesNadal and top-ranked Novak Djokovic are also expected to play in Madrid this year. Urgent reply from Philippine ‍football chief PDEA chief backs Robredo in revealing ‘discoveries’ on drug war Oil plant explodes in Pampanga town ‘We are too hospitable,’ says Sotto amid SEA Games woes US judge bars Trump’s health insurance rule for immigrants View comments Switzerland’s Roger Federer, centre, poses for a selfie with supporters, during a pre-event of the Laver Cup, in Geneva, Switzerland, Friday, February 8, 2019. (Salvatore Di Nolfi/Keystone via AP)MADRID — Roger Federer will play at the Madrid Open as part of his return to the clay court.Organizers say the 20-time Grand Slam champion will participate in the tournament from May 3-12.ADVERTISEMENT Private companies step in to help SEA Games hosting Grace Poe files bill to protect govt teachers from malicious accusations MOST READ LATEST STORIES PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games PLAY LIST 02:42PH underwater hockey team aims to make waves in SEA Games01:44Philippines marks anniversary of massacre with calls for justice01:19Fire erupts in Barangay Tatalon in Quezon City01:07Trump talks impeachment while meeting NCAA athletes02:49World-class track facilities installed at NCC for SEA Games02:11Trump awards medals to Jon Voight, Alison Krauss SEA Games hosting troubles anger Dutertelast_img read more

Premier League: Sixth Straight Win Lifts Chelsea to Second on Points Table

first_img Get the best of News18 delivered to your inbox – subscribe to News18 Daybreak. Follow on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook, Telegram, TikTok and on YouTube, and stay in the know with what’s happening in the world around you – in real time. London: Chelsea manager Frank Lampard insisted his side’s target is still to reduce the gap on title favourites Liverpool and Manchester City, despite leapfrogging City into second place with a sixth straight Premier League win on Saturday.The in-form Tammy Abraham and Christian Pulisic struck in the second half to beat Crystal Palace 2-0 at Stamford Bridge. Chelsea edge a point clear of City and to within five of leaders Liverpool, who host City in a highly-anticipated clash on Sunday.”We respect where Liverpool and Manchester City are. That was the gap to try and bridge in some way going into the season,” Lampard told BT Sport on the possibility of a title challenge. “We are just happy with what we’re doing.”A 4-4 draw with Ajax on Tuesday took the tally of goals in Chelsea’s prior 18 games this season to 70 at an average of nearly four per game.However, the Blues free flowing football was met with a brick wall of a Palace defence for the first 45 minutes.”I was a little bit frustrated as I felt we allowed the tempo to drop in the first half,” added Lampard. “I felt if we increased the tempo the game was there to win.”Pulisic had scored four goals in his last two Premier League games as the American begins to deliver on his £58 million ($74 million) price tag and only a fine save from Vicente Guaita denied the USA captain another strike early on.Thereafter, Chelsea were largely restricted to efforts from free-kicks on the edge of the box before the break as Willian curled inches wide.Gary Cahill was making his return to Stamford Bridge after his seven years as a Chelsea player came to an end in the summer.And Cahill reminded his former employers of why he won eight trophies for the club with a brilliant block to repel Willian’s goalbound effort in first half stoppage time.The Palace resistence was finally broken by one moment of genius from Willian as Chelsea’s captain for the day flicked the ball perfectly into Abraham’s path to slot home his 10th Premier League goal of the season and join Leicester’s Jamie Vardy as the top scorer in the division.Abraham is just one of a host of youngsters who have shone since being handed his chance in the first team by Lampard.”The number nines that have been at Chelsea are world class strikers. I felt ready in myself and I’m proud of myself,” said Abraham.Pulisic tested Guaita again with a rising drive shortly after that the Spaniard did brilliantly to tip over. But Guaita was helpless 11 minutes from time when Pulisic finally got the goal his performance deserved by following up after Michy Batshuayi’s shot had been blocked to nod home. chelseaChristian PulisicCrystal Palacefootball First Published: November 9, 2019, 9:59 PM ISTlast_img read more

California gas tax increased more than five cents on July 1

first_img Steve Bosh, Categories: Local San Diego News, Politics FacebookTwitter Steve Bosh Updated: 9:04 AM July 1, 2019 California gas tax increased more than five cents on July 1 00:00 00:00 spaceplay / pause qunload | stop ffullscreenshift + ←→slower / faster ↑↓volume mmute ←→seek  . seek to previous 12… 6 seek to 10%, 20% … 60% XColor SettingsAaAaAaAaTextBackgroundOpacity SettingsTextOpaqueSemi-TransparentBackgroundSemi-TransparentOpaqueTransparentFont SettingsSize||TypeSerif MonospaceSerifSans Serif MonospaceSans SerifCasualCursiveSmallCapsResetSave SettingsSAN DIEGO (KUSI) – The Gas Tax increased by five and a half cents on Monday. Californian’s are now paying the highest gas prices in the nation.As KUSI’s Steve Bosh reports, gas prices will continue to rise for decades to come.Bosh says this all part of former Governor Jerry Brown, and the Democrats successful attempts to convince voters to raise $52 billion over 10-years for transportation projects.Combined with the 12-cent increase from last year, this current increase in gasoline and registration fees  will raise $5.4 billion in the coming year. It has been documented that Sacramento has shifted road funds to other things.Monday on Good Morning San Diego, Carl DeMaio told us, “We knew that they were stealing our gas tax funds because it’s not going to fix the roads, you can look at the roads for evidence of that.”The underfunding or backlog of road maintenance is $139 billion. DeMaio, with Reform California, funded an initiative to repeal the 12-cent a gallon increase two years ago. He says the voters were duped by the Secretary of State who changed the ballot language from repeal the tax to “Voter approval for Future Gas and Vehicle Taxes and 2017 Tax Repeal Initiative.” California’s highest-in-the-nation gas tax will cost the typical working family $1500/year! Higher cost-of-living and the CA politicians raid the funds and won’t fix the roads. This is FRAUD and must be stopped.— Carl DeMaio (@carldemaio) July 2, 2019 Posted: July 1, 2019last_img read more

Make your food bloom this season with edible flowers

first_imgPeople love flowers for their fragrance, colour and texture and just the fact that they can ease your nerves by simply looking at them. Now, you have one more reason to stare at those pretty ferns and petals and thats food. Here are a few of the various ways of marrying delectable food with gorgeous edible flowers so that you never run out of reasons to woo your loved ones with flowers.Pansy: Mild and delicate, this beautiful garden flower with velvety petals comes in purple, yellow, blue and white and is great for garnishing. Tastes like grapes and mint, this helps adding a slight taste to the dish. You can add these pretty flowers to your salad to enhance its flavour or just use it as a garnish on chocolate tortes or add to the plating while serving pastries or puddings.Nasturtium: One of the most popular picks in India, with its mild peppery flavour makes for an excellent pickling and culinary component. The bright yellow, orange nasturtium flowers are easy-to-grow and one of the tastiest herbs in the world. As the leaves of this flower are also edible, simply chop them and add to salad along with the flowers. You can also make desserts and appetisers more appetising by adding as a garnish.Marigold: Marigold of the sunflower family or calendula adds a lot to the plate because of its bright colour. Add to salad making it a refreshing summer floral dish or include it in custard to give a citrusy touch for a change.Crocus flower: These are easy to grow and look extremely attractive when a dish is served. Apart from using them in salads and main course. You can also mix this bud in beverages for flavouring and can also be used in making tea and wine.Snap Dragon: This fragrant specimen come in vibrant colours like red, yellow, pink and adds punch to your otherwise boring food. Mix it with liqueur, cranberry and lots of ice to make a delicious drink or add to pizzas and pies to give a fresh twist to the junk food.Carnations / dianthus: Petals are sweet, once trimmed away from the base. The blossoms taste like their sweet, perfumed aroma.Experiment with these flowers but also be careful about which one to consume.ianslast_img read more