Ag Markets & More

Tuesday and Thursday mornings at 5:45am and 7:45am
  • Hosted by Jeff Pope, Bob Bragg
  • Local Host Jeff Pope

Ag Markets & More brings you a twice-weekly report on issues that affect agriculture and its role in shaping local, national, and global economies.

Allocating Dolores River Flows

Jun 22, 2017
Bob Bragg

Balancing the water supply provided by the Dolores River is no easy task for the Dolores Water Conservancy District. Recreational boaters want robust flows down stream of McPhee Reservoir, and farmers who depend on irrigation water want a full reservoir to start the growing season. However, this year, the River has delivered both, with over 40 days of boat-able flows as well as the Reservoir being full on June 22nd , an event that hasn’t happened very often since the Reservoir filled in 1987.


Small-scale livestock production is a good fit for many farms in the Four Corners Region, because small farms often have land that is best suited for grazing, rather than raising high value crops.  When the demand for meat from  heritage breed animals is added to the equation, it makes sense for small farmers to add livestock to their operations.  However, in order to benefit from higher prices that direct sales of meat to consumers and restaurants brings, producers must have their animals slaughtered at facilities that provide state or federal inspection. 


Gluten in wheat has gotten a bad rap lately, and the finger is pointed at new wheat varieties that have been developed over the past couple of decades as the root of the problem.  Although there is no GMO wheat released for production, wheat breeders continue to develop cultivars for traits like resistance to disease, better yields, and drought tolerance.  They use time tested methods of selecting for particular traits, such as cross pollinating plants to finally get seed that consistently produces wheat with the desired traits. 

Responding to Listeners

Jun 6, 2017
Lynn Betts / NRCS

Jeff and Bob respond to a listener, who has concerns about GMO food production.

African Farmers Lose Their Asses to China

May 31, 2017
Bob Bragg

Donkeys are used extensively in developing countries to provide power for farming operations and transportation.  Although they have a reputation for being obstinate, they are hard working, intelligent animals that help to relive humans of some of the back-breaking labor involved in subsistence farming.  Unfortunately, Farmers in sub-Saharan Africa are losing their donkeys to a more profitable global trade in donkey hides for making a gelatin that people in China believe has anti-aging properties and enhances libido.