Sorghum producers met in Lamar
About 30 Colorado sorghum producers met at the Cow Palace in Lamar on March 5.
The program included presentations on implementation of the 2008 farm bill by Tim Lust, National Sorghum Producers chief executive officer, crop insurance issues by Chris Cogburn, NSP strategic business director, and the United Sorghum Check-off Program by Virgil Smail, USCP Executive Director. Attendees also discussed the "Enhancing Sorghum Improvement in Colorado" research proposal approved for funding by the USCP.
Colorado Sorghum Producers President Terry Swanson, Walsh, said that sorghum is a very water efficient crop and is more sustainable in a rotation system than other crops that use more water.
"In fact, we call it a 'water-sipping' crop," Swanson said.
The CSP is in the process of introducing the national check-off program through USCP, which Swanson calls a "self-help" program. He hopes that the CSP will help re-establish grain sorghum's role as a leader in cropping systems in southeast Colorado. CSP is focusing on three areas: funding sorghum research, because sorghum is considered a minor crop, and not much research has been done on agronomic traits to make it more competitive; risk management, such as crop insurance issues; and legislation, where Swanson says sorghum has many issues in common with the other crops.
"We want a seat at the table when legislation is being developed concerning direct payments, conservations programs such as CRP, and cap and trade carbon sequestration and climate change issues," Swanson said.
CSP was organized in November 2007 as a voluntary membership organization to represent sorghum producers at the state and national levels of government and is a member state organization of NSP. CSP also advances the sorghum industry through public and private research into sorghum production and works to develop, promote and improve the domestic and export markets for sorghum through the United Sorghum Check-off Program.