You never know what you’re going to encounter on the ag beat. Here’s Al Oberembt, an old friend and Dakota regional account manager for Nufarm Americas Inc., an Australian-based provider of ag imputs — chemicals that protect or enhance crops. Al was manning a booth at the International Sugarbeet Institute in Fargo at the Fargodome. Among other things, Nufarm is the world’s No. 2 supplier of glyphosate, Oberembt says. (Is that a foreshadowing of business in the world of Roundup Ready beets?)
Anyway, Al was having fun with these kangaroo-paw back scratchers at the sugar beet show on March 14. It was the first of at two-day show. I wrote about the show for Agweek’s March 19 edition, so I hope you look that up. For the record, this is a "genuine product" that was "processed in accordance with N.P and W.S. rules and regulations." (I have a brother, Matt Pates at Piedmont, S.D., who has a degree in metalurgical engineering, but has a business making jackalopes. I wonder if he makes his items with the same loving care. That’s a topic for another blog entry.)
By the bye, Oberembt says farmers he talks to at the booth are enthusiastic to get into the fields this spring, what with the $4 corn prices and related inflation. He only half-jokes that all he wants is some weeds and disease. "That’s why we’re here, to take care of weeds and disease." He notes that farm chemcial prices haven’t increased at the same rate as the uptick in commodity prices. I wonder what farmers would say about that? Maybe I’ll hear from someone on a walkabout.