**Nerves are high as corn farmers near the close of their optimal planting window, May 20th, on average, with many wondering how long it might take to catch up, or if they can.

University of Illinois economist, Scott Irwin tells agweb.com we’re behind nationally, but not dramatically, with 6% of the U.S. corn crop currently planted compared to the 5-year-average of 12%.

But, he says, if drier weather comes, it shouldn’t take long for farmers to catch up or even exceed planting numbers.

**North American Meat Institute chief gets a firsthand look at U.S. red meat’s success in Japan and Korea.

NAMI CEO Julie Anna Potts just returned from her first visit to both countries where she participated in several consumer events, retail promotions and industry meetings, and received market briefings from U.S. Embassy staff in Tokyo and Seoul.

Potts says U.S. red meat enjoys favorable access terms under the Korea-U.S. Free Trade Agreement, but it’s urgent we reach a trade deal with Japan.

**Farmers now have until May 17th to supply paperwork for Market Facilitation Program payments. USDA just extended the May 1st deadline farmers originally had to submit their 2018 production evidence to the Farm Service Agency in order to receive MFP payments.

FSA Administrator Richard Fordyce tells agweb.com, weather conditions have blocked many from completing harvest, and we want to make sure everyone has the opportunity to finalize their MFP applications.

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