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Bowlin: Keep an eye out for farmers on roads

updated: 10/25/2017 10:22 AM

This rain has not been a welcome sight to the farmers. Those who still have crops in the fields are needing to get them out, and those who have them out already are needing to work in other areas that are outside. This means that the harvest will last a little longer, so please continue to watch out for farmers on the roadways.

The Illinois Soybean Association (ISA) may need to recalibrate its production goal for the state based on the size of the current crop. USDA this month estimated soybean production in Illinois could total nearly 601 million bushels this season. If realized, the crop would set a new state record, lead the nation and capture ISA's production goal three years early. (

From the University of Delaware:

"When customers walk down aisles of grocery stores, they are inundated with labels such as organic, fair-trade and cage free, just to name a few. Labels such as these may be eye-catching but are often free of any scientific basis and stigmatize many healthy foods.

"If you show consumers a chocolate bar that is labeled as 'fair trade,' some will tell you that it has lower calories," Messer said. "But the label is not about calories. Consumers do this frequently with the 'organic' label as they think it is healthy for the consumer. Organic practices may be healthier for the farm workers or the environment, but for the actual consumer, there's very little evidence behind that. You're getting lots of mixed, wrong messages out there.

"The natural label is a classic one which means very little, yet consumers assume it means more than it does. They think it means 'No GMO' but it doesn't. They think it means it is 'organic' but it isn't. This label is not helping them align their values to their food, and they're paying a price premium but not getting what they wanted to buy, per a study produced by the University of Delaware.

"When you start labeling everything as 'free of this' such as 'gluten free water,' you can end up listing stuff that could never have been present in the food in the first place."

My final word is "Don't get caught up in all of the different labels -- there are some that are just too confusing. When you purchase meat -- buy from a grocer you trust. When you purchase fruits and vegetables -- purchase from farmers markets when possible. Just try and use good judgement and don't get caught up in all of the hype.

It is time again to order pecans, oranges and grapefruit. Pecans will be $10 for a 1-pound bag of half-shelled and $7 for a 12-ounce bag of chocolate-covered pecans.

A 40-pound box of oranges is $35, or $25 for 20 pounds. A 40-pound box of grapefruits is $30, or $20 for a 20-pound box. We will not have tangelos this year at all. Orders must be received by Nov. 22, and they will be in before Christmas. Pecans will be in before Thanksgiving. Call 435-3616 now to get your order in.

Have you ever wondered what the Franklin County Farm Bureau Young Leaders do in the county? They give out scholarships every year, they are the face of Harvest of Help, they participate in parades throughout the county, they help with any and all of the Farm Bureau programs throughout the year, and they have a great time doing it.

To be a Young Leader, you must be between the ages of 18 and 35 and live in the county. We do have a Junior Young Leader Program that focuses on high school. We work hard and play hard and get a lot of recognition while doing it. It is a great way to get your name and face in front of businesses and business leaders in the county and the state. If you would like more information, please call the office at 435-3616.

Remember, we are farmers working together. If we can help, let us know.