“Producers perform an average of six tillage operations in the fall. These include moldboard plow, chisel plow, offset disk, field cultivator, multiweeder, and land leveler operations. According to Fits, with the new vertical-action tiller the grower can reduce these tillage operations to once in the fall. Computerized budget analysis shows that the ‘conventional’ tillage system using the six operations mentioned earlier utilizes approximately 21 gallons of diesel fuel per acre. The ‘reduced tillage’ system, using the vertical-action tiller, utilizes approximately 10 gallons of fuel per acre, a 50 percent savings in fuel consumption.
“The new piece of equipment can also be used to apply chemical and granular materials, he continued. Nozzles and boxes have been installed on the equipment which deposit these materials directly into the 8-inch strips. ‘This means an additional savings in chemicals as well as fuel,’ Fitts said, ‘because you are only applying them to the 8-inch strip instead of broadcasting them over a 22-inch row as in the conventional system.’ ”
Valley Growers Harvest Third Largest Crop — “[Red River] Valley [American] Crystal growers harvested the third largest crop in history on a gross tonnage basis with 5,170,000 tons of beets purchased. Average [tonnage] per acre of 18.6 ranks second to the 19.5 tons per acre record of 1978.
“Larger gross tonnages were recorded in 1977 (5,295,000 tons) and 1978 (5,895,000 tons), but came from 304,000 acres. The 1981 crop was harvested from the reduced acreage now in effect.”
Sweetener Approved — “Aspartame, a low-calorie sweetener has been accepted by the Food and Drug Administration for use in a variety of foods, Food Engineering reports. The product was developed by G.D. Searle & Co. for use as a tabletop sweetener and as an ingredient in dry food products.
“Aspartame may be used as a low-calorie sweetener in powdered soft drinks, presweetened breakfast cereals, chewing gum, dry gelatin mixes, desserts and toppings, and [in] presweetened coffees and teas. It cannot be used in baked goods, however, because the compound breaks down under the high temperatures required for baking.”
For Processors Who Are Wet-Milling Corn . . . The Time Is Right — “Through 1980, the industry has expanded its production. But the development of the new HFCS 55 percent fructose content product, last year’s high sugar prices, and last year’s decision by major soft drink companies to replace some of the sugar in their products with HFCS, has changed the industry’s outlook. The word is expansion, and the industry can handle it.
“There are currently 26 corn wet-milling plants operating, or soon to be operating, in the U.S. Seventeen have been built since 1960. All of the plants are modern facilities, ready to process corn efficiently. And, according to Robert Barry, USDA sugar specialist, HFCS capacity is expected to expand between 75 to 80 percent between 1980 and 1985.
“ ‘Wet-milling corn has many benefits,’ Barry says. ‘Diversity is the most obvious.’ Wet-milled corn can be used in five major product categories: starches, corn syrups, dextrose, HFCS, and corn by-products such as corn gluten feed, meal, and corn oil. Some processors are interested in adding a sixth — ethanol.”
Facts About Sugar in the 1981 General Farm Bill -- “The USDA reports that had there been no U.S. sugar industry during the most recent worldwide shortage, the world price of sugar would have been increased ‘several hundred percent.’ . . .
“The balance of payment deficit [accounted] for by sugar imports in 1980 approximated $2 billion. Had the nation’s total sugar requirements come from imports, the balance of payments deficit would have been at least $4.7 billion (and quite likely substantially more). . . .
“The U.S. is a rarity among sugar producing and consuming nations because it has no long-range policy for sugar. . . .
“A loan program covering sugar crops would not be a departure from programs covering other commodities and is justified by the same reasoning as applied to support programs for other crops. . . .
“A loan program for sugar would not require set asides (it is a deficit-produced crop); would not require direct payments (returns to farmers would come from the market); would not require on-farm storage (sugar will be stored by cane or beet processors). . . .”