Farm and Dairy’s week in review: 12/6

Week in Review 12/6

Here are this week’s top stories from Farm and Dairy:

1. Part I: Growing mushrooms indoors

Indoor mushroom kits contain everything you need to grow mushrooms in your home. All you need is a space with cool temperatures, a specific amount of light and a little bit of room.

For as little as $19, kits for for all kinds of mushrooms can be purchased. In a few weeks, you’ll notice mushrooms growing.

 2. Farmers urge Congress to reinstate tax break on equipment purchases

Every penny matters for farmers and small business owners.

That’s why section 179 of the Internal Revenue Code, which allowed farmers and other small business owners write off up to $500,000 in capital purchases as well as a 50 percent depreciation deduction each year up until its expiration in 2013, matters so much. If Congress does not decide to restore the provision, the annual write-off threshold will return to $25,000 with no depreciation percentage.

3. Poultry production may be ramping up

High profits for the livestock and poultry industries are possible due to moderated feed prices and record high animal prices, but an increase in poultry production will not solve all problems.

If poultry producers ramp up production, the result could be just like what happened in 2011: over-production and lower farm prices. Even if grain prices fall, production shouldn’t be increased because it hurts the markets and causes prices to fall due to too much product on the market.

4. USDA extends dairy Margin Protection Program deadline, again

Dairy producers now have until Dec. 19 to sign up for the dairy Margin Protection Program, which protects them when the difference between the price of milk and feed costs falls below the level of protection that the dairy producer has selected.

Investment in the program is recommended, since forecasts for weather and markets can never be guaranteed.

 5. Six tips for Christmas tree care

Cut Christmas trees require a lot more TLC than artificial trees. To keep your tree healthy throughout the Christmas season, make sure you’re taking the proper steps from the time you cut the tree at the farm to when you put it in the stand and decorate it. Basic tree care will ensure that your tree lasts until after New Year’s Day.


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