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Cover Crops Harvested Early

Edge Dairy Farmer Cooperative, one of the country’s largest dairy co-ops, applauded the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s (USDA) decision to allow farmers to harvest cover crops early as they work to ensure adequate livestock feed supplies. After hearing members’ concerns, Edge raised the issue with the USDA’s Risk Management Agency in a letter last month.

The USDA said June 20 that it will move the allowable harvest date for acres in its prevented-planting program to Sept. 1, up from Nov. 1, because of this year’s unusually wet weather. The decision also says that cutting for silage, haylage and baleage will be treated the same as haying or grazing. This applies to this cropping year only. 

Edge also thanks Reps. Dusty Johnson of South Dakota and Angie Craig of Minnesota for their leadership on introducing the Feed Emergency Enhancement During Disasters Act, which was announced June 11 in the House of Representatives. Sens. John Thune of South Dakota and Dick Durbin of Illinois led a Senate letter to the USDA, and a letter to the agency from the Wisconsin congressional delegation all helped to elevate this issue.