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March 12, 2008   Email to Friend 

Darryal Ray
(334) 613-4187
March 12, 2008

MONTGOMERY, Ala. -- Citing a need to provide information that will help its members make better-informed decisions on the farm, the Alabama Farmers Federation has teamed with Data Transmission Network (DTN) to give the commodity market pages of AlfaFarmers.org a makeover.

The new DTN Commodity Market link unveiled today takes Web visitors to an improved commodity page where current market quotations are provided for everything from cotton and corn to cattle and hogs, as well as links to Alabama's sale barns and pricing information from the Mont Belvieu, Texas propane pipeline.

Other market links include those to the Alabama Livestock Reporting Stations as well as links to daily, weekly and monthly USDA news and reports. DTN's National Cash Indices are also available as are a fully customizable personal Market Watch and a ZIP-sensitive "My LDP."

"You'll never have to go anywhere else to find what you're looking for," said Perry Mobley, director of the Federation's Hay & Forage, Beef and Equine Divisions who helped determine what commodity information would be most useful to Alabama farmers. "All the market information you need can be found just by going to the Federation's Web site."

DTN can be found on thousands of farms in North America, giving producers fingertip access to instant market information on commodities of all kinds.

"It's the next best thing to having your own DTN system," said Jeff Helms, the Federation's Director of Communications. "Most of our members who have a DTN system on their farm use it several times a day. For those who don't have DTN systems, I'm confident this will become a valuable tool in their farm's business plan."

In addition to a market ticker and quotes for corn, cotton, soybeans, wheat, feeder cattle, live cattle, lean hogs and Class III milk, the revamped Web page also offers something else farmers rely heavily on -- a weather report. By typing in their ZIP code, farmers can get a five-day forecast for their local weather. There's also a "current local conditions" feature as well as a radar map.

Other features are geared to keep farmers "in the know" on a variety of issues. Top news headlines will keep farmers posted on current agricultural events, the DTN Ethanol Center will keep them abreast of alternative energy news and the DTN Soybean Rust Center offers the latest news on the spread of the disease.

Need a little help in the how-to department? A special How-To Projects feature from The Progressive Farmer magazine offers fun and useful projects, free plans, tips and more.

It's all rounded out with a "Did You Know?" feature that highlights an interesting agricultural fact.

However, Darryal Ray, director of AlfaFarmers.org, said the most important feature could very well be the "Suggestion Box" feature where visitors can submit recommendations for improvement. "This redesign has been a team effort, and we believe it will be a big help to our members," said Ray, "but only our members who use this information to conduct their business can tell us whether we've succeeded."

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