Tillage expo

Be sure to attend the Conservation Tillage Conference & Expo, scheduled February 8 and 9 in Sioux Falls, SD, at the Ramkota Hotel. Fifteen presentations are planned for the event with topics ranging from pests and tillage systems to soil fertility and the economics of tillage options. A trade show will display the latest conservation tillage technology and equipment. Cost for the event is $100 per person. Farm Industry News is a sponsor of the conference.

For more information or to register, call 800/722-5334, ext. 4698, or visit www.farmindustrynews.com. For room reservations, call the Ramkota Hotel at 605/336-0650 and mention the Conservation Tillage Conference for a rate of $69 per room.

Soil fertility and land price

A new study by Doane Agricultural Services shows that higher soil fertility levels can significantly increase the price of land purchased solely for the purpose of farming. The study, which concentrated on land transactions in Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska, showed that land rated as “high” in fertility had an average selling price of 28% higher than area averages for farmland. Land rated “very high” in fertility brought 62% higher sale prices than the average.

Syngenta consolidates

After recent acquisitions of the Garst and Golden Harvest seed companies, Syngenta announced that it will close or reduce capacity at 12 seed corn and soybean seed production locations and two field offices to align the new brands with its existing NK Seed business. The three brands combined give Syngenta 15% of the seed corn business and 13% of seed soybeans.

Syngenta says that, through the closings, it is seeking to run its remaining 50 seed production facilities closer to full production capacity. The closure and integration process is expected to be complete by June 30, 2005.

Five million engines

John Deere's Waterloo Works marked a milestone for the company in October by producing its five millionth engine. John Deere entered the engine business in 1918 and produced its first diesel engine in 1949. Today, the company's diesel engines range from 49 to 600 hp and are being updated to meet new EPA diesel emissions requirements.