General Information

4 Aug

The Impacts of COVID-19 on US Ethanol

2020-08-04T11:37:26-05:00August 4th, 2020|General Information, News Releases, North Dakota Corn Utilization Council|

By David Ripplinger, North Dakota State University Department of Agribusiness and Applied Economics

Like many parts of the economy, the spread COVID-19 has had a devastating impact on the US corn ethanol industry.  Stay-at-home orders issued beginning in mid-March had an immediate impact on passenger travel and fuel use.  In response, ethanol production was quickly curtailed dramatically reducing corn use and price.


17 Jul

NDCGA Welcomes Two New Staff Members

2020-07-17T13:20:39-05:00July 17th, 2020|General Information, News Releases, North Dakota Corn Growers Association|

On top of the many changes the world has seen these past few months, NDCGA has been busy with its own staffing transformation. Two new staff members were recently hired, filling the gaps in the Fargo office.

Taking on the role of Executive Director is Brenda Elmer, who joined the Association in April. Brenda oversees the effective operation of the Association and serves as the point of contact for state and national policy issues affecting North Dakota’s corn industry.

Brenda is a graduate of Hamline University Graduate School in St. Paul, MN, with a master’s degree in public administration, and Minnesota State University Moorhead where she got her undergraduate degrees in both mass communications and political science.

She has more than  years of public policy experience at the federal, state, and local levels. She previously served as the North Dakota regional director for a national construction association, and she also worked for an international non-profit based in Fargo doing project management and government relations. She worked at the Minnesota legislature as a policy staffer, a regional director for a Minnesota member of Congress, and was a local elected city council member. Brenda grew up on a corn, soybean, and beef cattle farm in northeastern South Dakota.

“We are excited to have Ms. Elmer lead our Association. She brings a wealth of experience and expertise in management and in the advocacy arena and will no doubt put that to work promoting the corn industry in our state and in Washington, D.C.” stated North Dakota Corn Growers Association President Rob Hanson.

Completing the Association staff is Kari Schiefelbein. She started in June as the new Growers Services Specialist. Her responsibilities include overseeing and promoting membership, managing finances, and creating content for social media, the NDCGA website, and the CornTalk magazine.

Prior to joining the Association, Kari grew up on her family’s farm, Schiefelbein Farms, in central Minnesota where they raise Black Angus cattle. Kari moved to Fargo/Moorhead to attend Minnesota State University Moorhead from which she recently graduated with a bachelor’s degree in English and mass communications.

President Hanson also noted, “Kari has hit the ground running in services to our growers, working hard on events and publications and membership in the first weeks on the job. She comes with a fresh perspective and experience in communications that will help take the Association to the next level.”

Brenda Elmer, Executive Director

Kari Schiefelbein, Growers Services Specialist

20 Dec

NDCGA VP Paul Thomas shares his thoughts on the EPA RVO rule

2019-12-20T11:06:06-06:00December 20th, 2019|General Information, News Releases, North Dakota Corn Growers Association|

North Dakota Corn Growers Association Vice President Paul Thomas of Velva, ND shared his thoughts with Mick Kjar about the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) Renewable Volume Obligations’s (RVO) rule. This ruling set the fuel volume requirements for the coming year, including accounting for 2020 refinery waivers. Listen to Paul’s full interview here or click the box below. 

3 Dec

Many Factors Influence Corn Test Weight

2019-12-03T07:44:48-06:00December 3rd, 2019|General Information, News Releases, North Dakota Corn Utilization Council|

by Dr. Kenneth J. Hellevang; NDSU Agricultural and Biosystems Engineering

Poor growing and harvesting conditions this year have North Dakota producers concerned about the test weight of their corn.

“Many factors influence the measured test weight of corn, including the physical characteristics of the kernel such as size, density, shape and surface of the kernel,” says Ken Hellevang, North Dakota State University Extension agricultural engineer. (more…)

25 Oct

Improving Salinity and Waterlogging Stress Resilience in Corn

2019-10-28T08:43:37-05:00October 25th, 2019|General Information, North Dakota Corn Utilization Council|

by Kalidas Shetty and Dipayan Sarkar; NDSU Plant Science Department

Corn is an important commodity crop of North Dakota and corn industry is a major contributor to the state’s economy. Addressing different production challenges of corn growers to improve overall productivity and profitability is essential for growth and sustainability of corn industry. Corn growers of North Dakota are facing increasing challenges from several abiotic stresses, such as salinity, drought, waterlogging, and heat stress.

10 Oct

ARC/PLC Decision Making Information

2019-10-10T16:28:49-05:00October 10th, 2019|General Information, News Releases, North Dakota Corn Growers Association|


Last December, a new Farm Bill was signed and put into place. Since then, programs continue to be implemented and updated. Two of the programs are the Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) and Price Loss Coverage (PLC) programs. Producers will have until March 15, 2020 to sign up for either program for the 2019 crop year.

The links below are from sources we think will give you the necessary information and tools needed to make an informed decision about which program is best for you.

ARC/PLC Press Release


ARC/PLC Updated Information

ARC/PLC Program Data

ARC/PLC Library

ARC/PLC Fact Sheet

2014 vs. 2018 Farm Bill


FSA Programs and Services

Commodity Fact Sheets

ND county FSA offices will be conducting producer meetings November – February. When you make an appointment, the county will need to know which program you’d like to enroll your farm in (PLC, ARC-CO, ARC-IC) and have yield information available if you plan to update your PLC yield in 2020.

*The use of these links does not equate to an endorsement of the news article, source, or product.

26 Sep

Disaster Aid Information

2019-09-26T14:43:36-05:00September 26th, 2019|General Information, News Releases, North Dakota Corn Growers Association|

Hello! Here, you will find Wildfire and Hurricane Indemnity Program Plus (WHIP+) disaster aid information.

If you follow this link you will find a map of North Dakota and the counties where disasters were declared on June 12, 2019. The counties are: Pembina, Walsh, Grand Forks, Traill, Steele, Cass, Barnes, Richland, Ransom, Sargent, LaMoure, Dickey, Emmons, Morton, Grant, Hettinger, Adams, and McKenzie.

The type of aid available in these counties is WHIP+. WHIP+ provides disaster payments to producers to offset losses from hurricanes, wildfires, and other qualifying natural disasters that occurred in 2018-19. This covers the losses of crops, trees, bushes, and vines that occurred as a result of those disaster events. This will provide assistance for yield-based and value loss crops that suffered losses prior to harvest. WHIP+ payments for crop losses only covers production losses, not quality losses. Eligible crops include those where crop insurance or NAP coverage is available. If your county received a Presidential or Secretarial Emergency Disaster Declaration or one or more of the qualifying disaster events, you are eligible for aid. However, if you are outside the disaster declaration, you may still be eligible, but you will need to supply additional/supporting documents. These are determined by a county committee; contact your local FSA office for more information.

WHIP+ will now include programs for both milk losses due to adverse weather conditions and to on-farm stored commodities.

The amount of aid you can receive is dependent on your average adjusted gross farm income (AAGFI). Under WHIP+, a person cannot receive more than $125,000 in payments if the AAGFI is less than 75 percent of their AAGFI for 2015, 2016, & 2017. However, if at least 75 percent of your adjusted gross income is from farming, and necessary documentation is provided, you could be eligible to receive up to $250,000 per crop year under WHIP+ payments.

WHIP+ payments will take into consideration the difference between the expected value of the crop and the actual value of the crop as a result of the disaster event. This will be determined by FSA using crop insurance or NAP prices. Payments under WHIP+ cannot exceed 90 percent of the total losses for those individuals with crop insurance. For those without crop insurance or NAP, the total amount of payments received under WHIP+ cannot exceed 70 percent of the total losses for 2018-19. Production for crop losses is based on the verifiable or reliable production records for that crop year.

It is important to note that the AGI payment limitations that are required under WHIP+ do not apply to prevent plant (PP) payments. WHIP+ is for crops that were damaged after being planted and prevent plant payments are for those that were not able to plant at all due to flooding or disaster related events. PP will be administered in the same way as other Federal crop insurance programs. If you purchased crop insurance and were unable to plant due to a weather-related disaster, you are eligible for PP payments. Under prevent plant, individuals will receive 15% for those with revenue protection, except those who select the harvest price exclusion option and 10% for those who do not have revenue protection. This will be determined by the crop insurance you purchased.

If you receive WHIP+ payments, you will be required to purchase crop insurance for the next 2 available crop years.

Applications should be submitted to your county FSA office. FSA offices are now accepting applications. To learn more about WHIP+ plus and the application material required, please visit

Please contact our office with any questions at 701-566-9322 or email .

Thank you!

27 Aug

European Corn Borer Trapping Network and Outreach

2019-10-25T13:12:51-05:00August 27th, 2019|General Information, North Dakota Corn Utilization Council|

by Dr. Janet Knodel, Professor and Extension Entomologist, North Dakota State University
Co-Investigator: Dr. Veronica Calles-Torrez, Post-Doctoral Scientist, North Dakota State University

The European corn borer (Figure 1) is a significant pest of corn, as well as other crops, including potato, millet, and many vegetables. For all agricultural crops attacked, European corn borer costs growers in the U.S. over 1 billion dollars annually due to yield losses and control costs. Yield losses due to European corn borer infestations are primarily due to tunneling in stalks and ear shanks that result in physiological stress and stalk breakage and dropped ears prior to harvest. (more…)

1 Aug

North Dakota Corn Growers Association welcomes Lisa Hochhalter

2019-08-01T14:40:52-05:00August 1st, 2019|General Information, News Releases, North Dakota Corn Growers Association|

Lisa Hochhalter

ND Corn Growers Association hires Lisa Hochhalter

FARGO, North Dakota — August 1, 2019 — The North Dakota Corn Growers Association hired Lisa Hochhalter as its Executive Director this past spring. Hochhalter has been working part-time while studying for the bar exam. She has now completed the bar exam and will begin her full-time duties starting August 1, 2019. “We are excited to have Ms. Hochhalter lead our Association, she brings great energy and a passion for the corn industry to this position,” stated North Dakota Corn Growers Association President, Randy Melvin.

Lisa was assigned to the House Industry, Business & Labor and Agriculture Committees for the 2019 North Dakota Legislative Assembly. Prior to her work at the Legislature Lisa was a law clerk at Zimney Foster, P.C., in Grand Forks. She has a Bachelor of Science degree in Agriculture Communications from North Dakota State University and received her Juris Doctor degree from the University of North Dakota School of Law in May 2019.

Lisa will oversee the effective operation of the Association. She will work with the board of directors to develop and implement programs that enhance the profitability of ND farms. She will ensure the continued growth and viability of the Association by actively seeking opportunities to increase membership and identifying potential ongoing sources of revenue. She will also advocate for the North Dakota corn industry with national and state policy leaders. This position will also be the liaison to the National Corn Growers Association on behalf of the Association and the North Dakota corn industry.

The North Dakota Corn Growers Association is the farmer-led membership organization focusing on policy that impacts North Dakota corn producers.