S & D: Special and differential treatment
SAA: Shared appreciation agreement
Saccharimeter: Instrument used in sugar analysis to measure the amount of rotation of polarized light when passed through a sugar solution. The amount of rotation provides an estimate of the amount of sucrose solution. See Polarimeter, and Polarization (pol).
Saccharomyces cerevisiae: Organism used to ferment sugars (primarily glucose) to ethanol.
SAES: State Agricultural Experiment Stations
Safe Drinking Water Act (SDWA) (P.L. 93-523): Signed into law December 16, 1974, and amended in 1986 and 1996. The Act, Title XIV of the Public Health Service Act, is the key federal law for protecting public water systems from harmful contaminants. The Act directs the Environmental Protection Agency to insure safe drinking water, establish and enforce water-quality standards to protect the public, control underground injection of wastes that might contaminate water supplies, and protect groundwater. See Wellhead Protection Program (WHPP).
Safe-moisture level: A level of moisture low enough to prevent the growth of undesirable microorganisms in the finished product under the intended conditions of manufacturing, storage, and distribution.
Safeguard relief: See Section 201.
Safeguard(s): Temporary and selective measures (such as increased tariffs, tariff-rate quotas, or quantitative restrictions) explicitly designed to slow imports in order to prevent market disruption and enable a particular industry to adjust to heightened competition from foreign suppliers.
Safeguards; Temporary and selective measures (such as increased tariffs, tariff-rate quotas, or quantitative restrictions) explicitly designed to slow imports in order to enable a particular industry to adjust to heightened competition from foreign suppliers.
Safened seed: Seed that has been chemically treated with a herbicide antidote which protects the seedling from herbicide damage.
Safety net: (1) Protection from fluctuating crop prices through marketing assistance loans, crop insurance, and revenue assurance/insurance. (2) The three-tiered program of price-supports and income supports: marketing assistance loans, direct payments, and counter-cyclical payments.
Safflower; safflowerseed: A source of oil used in cooking, cosmetics, paints, and medicines.
Sale barn: The local auction business for all types of animals, typically cattle, that have not been finished.
Sales class(es): Farms divided into classes, based upon the amount of total sales of agricultural products. The classes are (a) under $10,000; (b) $10,000 to $49,999; (c) $50,000 to $99,999; (d) $100,000 to $249,999; (e) $250,000 to $499,999; and (f) $500,000 and above. Farms with sales of $500,000 or more make up three percent of all farms, but 52 percent of all agricultural sales.
Sales closing date(s): The date established by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation as the last date that a producer may apply for an eligible crop insurance contract on a crop in a specific county.
Saline soil: A soil containing enough soluble salts to impair its productivity for plants.
Salmonella, enteridis (SE): A foodborne illness associated with raw and undercooked eggs that can cause death in the elderly, infants, and those with weakened immune systems. See Foodborne illness(es).
Salmonella, salmonellosis: A common bacterial form of food poisoning transmitted by food, water, and direct contact. Salmonellosis can cause fever, abortion, and death in cattle and swine.
Salt-tolerant vegetation: Special areas planted to vegetation capable of growing in high-saline environments and of reducing saline seepage.
Saltwater intrusion: The invasion of saltwater into freshwater aquifers in coastal and inland areas. This condition can be caused when groundwater, which charges the aquifer, is withdrawn faster than it is recharged by precipitation.
Salvage cattle: See Cull.
Salvage cutting: The exploitation of trees that are dead, dying, or deteriorating (e.g., overmature or materially damaged by fire, wind, insects, fungi, or other injurious agencies), before their timber becomes worthless.
Salvage sale: The removal of dead, dying, deteriorating, or susceptible trees to prevent the spread of pests or pathogens; to promote healthy, vigorous stands of trees; and to aid in the recovery of trees damaged by fire, wind, insects, fungi, or other injurious agents before the timber becomes worthless for harvesting.
Sample grade(s)l: The federal grain and oilseeds standard that identifies commodities as having qualities unsuited for normal end-users. The designation is used for grain and oilseeds that do not come within the grade requirements of any of the numerical grades; have an unacceptable odor; or are contaminated with stones, animal filth, toxic substances or other inferior conditions or are otherwise of distinctly low quality.
Sample(s); sampling: (1) In scouting, the portion of an insect population collected in a prescribed manner upon which a judgment is made about the entire population. (2) The testing of a representative portion of a commodity delivery for grade and classificationpurposes. (3) The withdrawal of a representative portion of a grain from a container or carrier by use of a specialized probe in order to conduct a grain inspection. See Official sample-lot inspection service, and Submitted-sample inspection service. (4) See Cotton classer; cotton grader.
Sample-lot inspection service: See Official sample-lot inspection service.
Sampler: After grain is unloaded, a sampler (located before or after the scale) sweeps a sampling container (a pelican) through the grain stream once every sampling period, usually between every 12 and 25 seconds. The grain flows directly to an inspection laboratory where it is graded. Grain arriving by barge to an export elevator must be officially weighed, but official inspection is optional. See Belt(s), Leg, Marine leg, and Tripper.
Sandy loam: Soil made up primarily of sand (50-60 percent), with the remainder being silt (20-30 percent) and clay (approximately 20 percent). It is commonly referred to as good cotton soil. See Texture.
Sanitary and phytosanitary measures: Measures adopted by governments to protect animal, plant, or human health. International trading rules have always recognized the right of countries to implement such necessary measures, although vague standards encouraged some countries to adopt such measures for the purposes of trade restriction. Under the Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures, GATT disciplines will be imposed on the use of health measures to restrict trade. Trade-restrictive measures taken by an importing country must be based on science, including the use of risk assessment techniques.
SAP: Scientific Advisory Panel
Saplings: Live, vigorous, and well-formed trees of commercial species, usually one to five inches in diameter at breast-height.
SARE: Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education Program
Saturated; saturated fat; saturated fatty acid(s): See Fatty acid(s).
Saved seed(s): Seed that is saved from a previous harvest to be used for planting in a subsequent planting cycle. Saved seed primarily comes from self-pollinated crops such as wheat, soybeans, and rice. Saved seed can become an issue if the seeds are protected under patent law or the Plant Variety Protection Act (PVPA). Generally, producers using patented seed varieties may only plant the seed for one year’s crop; they are prohibited from collecting seeds from their crop to plant the following crop cycle. Producers using seeds registered under the PVPA cannot sell saved seeds, but may use saved seeds for their own use. See Terminator seeds.
Saw gin: A cotton gin which utilizes a series of fine-toothed circular discs slightly protruding through narrow slits of a plate holding the seed cotton. The teeth catch and pull the fiber from the cotton seeds that cannot pass through the slits. This type of gin can cause substantial fiber damage if not properly regulated, but has the advantage of being fast. See Gin(s)(ning)(ned), and Roller (type) gin(s).
Saw logs; sawlogs: Logs meeting minimum standards of diameter, length, and defect. The logs must be at least eight feet long, and have a minimum diameter inside bark of six inches for softwoods and eight inches for hardwoods.
Sawtimber: Trees suitable for production of saw logs.
SBI: Substantial beneficial interest
SBIR: Small Business Innovation Research Program
SBP: School Breakfast Program
Scab: See Fusarium.
Scabies: A highly contagious, serious disease of sheep, primarily, that causes loss of wool due to the infestation of mites. The mites burrow into the skin and are covered eventually by scabs. The mites continue to feed under the scabs and can cause death if untreated. The continual formation of scabs also lifts the wool hairs out by the roots.
Scale ticket: A ticket, issued upon the delivery of grain to a public warehouse or the removal of grain from a warehouse, that typically notes the name of the person delivering grain, the date of delivery, and the gross amount of grain delivered. Scale tickets are not warehouse receipts. See Warehouse receipt(s).
Scaling: The determination of the gross and net volume of timber using volumetric units.
Scarification: (1) The loosening of top soil or the breaking up of the forest floor to improve conditions for seed germination or tree planting. (2) The nicking or abrasion of the hard seed coat of some species which allows water and oxygen into the seed to aid germination.
SCC: Somatic cell count
SCGP: Supplier Credit Guarantee Program
Schedule A (federally excepted) (appointment): Appointment authority issued by the Office of Personnel Management for the USDA to appoint and employ individuals in the Cooperative Extension Service (CES) in a joint appointment arrangement between USDA and the CES organization in theland grant college or university. The joint appointment was dependent upon an appointment in the land-grant organization. The appointment had to be a regular reoccurring position with at least a 50 percent extension-related assignment under theCES and have responsibility for being a representative of the federal system. This authority was terminated by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7220).
Scheme or device: In terms of payment limitations, the attempt to structure business entities in order to defraud the government by illegally evading the limitations. The Farm Service Agency defines scheme or device as an action adopted to defeat the purpose of aprogram through misrepresentation of fact affecting a program determination (7 U.S.C. § 1308-2).
School Breakfast Program (SBP): Made a permanent program in 1975. Provides financial and commodity assistance to states to maintain the provision of nourishing breakfasts in schools and residential child care institutions. These meals are free or at reduced or full prices, depending on the same income eligibility guidelines as used for the National School Lunch Program.
School Lunch Program: See National School Lunch Program.
Science and Education Resources Development (SERD): The Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service division responsible for strengthening key components of the infrastructure undergirding U.S. food and agricultural research, education, and extension and for building coalitions and alliances with public and private organizations. This primarily entails providing national leadership through the Office of Higher Education Programs, the International Programs Office, and the Current Research Information System.
Scientific Advisory Panel (SAP): The Environmental Protection Agency’s Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act Scientific Advisory Panel provides scientific advice on pesticides and pesticide-related issues as to the effect of proposed and final regulations, EPA guidance, and registration actions on human health and the environment.
Scientist year (SY): Unit of measurement that equates to the amount of scientific performance by a research scientist over one calendar year. A research scientist may divide a SY to show work in more than one area, i.e., 0.75SY in food safety research and 0.25SY in food quality research.
Scorecard lending: A loan-underwriting tool that attempts to statistically quantify a borrower’s probability of repayment. This probability is based upon a number of factors statistically substantiated to be predictors of a borrower’s willingness and ability to repay his debt. Scorecards vary by institution, but typically, credit bureau information is a key component. As with conventional underwriting methods, a borrower’s repayment history is an important consideration in determining a borrower’s willingness to repay future debt obligations. The assignment of a score to this and other credit factors results in an overall credit score that determines the probable credit-worthiness of the borrower.
Scorekeeping: The process of calculating the budgetary effects (budget authority, receipts, outlays, the surplus or deficit, and the public debt limit) of pending and enacted legislation and assessing their impact on the targets or limits in the budget resolution, as required by the Congressional Budget Act. The CBO derives its scorekeeping estimates from analyses of the President’s budget, baseline budget projections, and bill cost estimates.
Scour erosion: The erosive action of running water in streams that excavates and carries away material from the bed and banks. Scour erosion may occur in both earth and solid rock material.
Scour(ed)(ing): (1) Cleaning raw wool or fiber and removing such impurities as dirt, sweat, and grease by washing with soaps and alkalies or with chemicals. (2) The cleaning of wheat whereby superficial dirt is removed by abrasion of the wheat surface against perforated metal or an emery-lined cylinder, and the dirt is subsequently blown away by air current. (3) See Scour erosion.
Scout(ing): The inspection of a field for pests (insects, weeds, or pathogens). Scouting is a basic component of integrated pest management systems. It is used to determine whether pest populations have reached levels that warrant intervention for control and to help determine the appropriate method of control. See Point sampling (scouting), Random sampling (scouting), and Sample(s); sampling.
SCP: Sugar-containing products
Scrap (tobacco): The residue that accumulates in the course of processing or manufacturing, consisting chiefly of portions of tobacco leaves and leaves of poor quality. It does not include any portion of the tobacco stems.
Scrap(ped)(ping): The second picking of cotton. It is often done when the first picking was early in the harvest season, when all bolls were not fully open. The fiber quality of scrapped cotton is usually less than that of the first picking and usually has more trash. See Pick(ed)(ing).
Scrape and haul system: (1) Manure removal from poultry houses by means of a mechanical cable-operated scraper. (2) A waste-removal system using organic or inorganic bedding. The removed waste material can be handled with standard manure spreaders for land application.
Scrapie: A fatal, degenerative disease affecting the central nervous system of sheep and goats. Scrapie has had a significant impact on the U.S. sheep industry, primarily to the Suffolk breed. See Transmissible Spongiform Encephalopathy (TSE).
Screenings: (1) In seeds, the chaff, sterile florets, immature seed, weed seed, inert matter, and any other materials removed in any way from any seeds in any kind of cleaning or processing. It contains less than 25 percent of live agricultural or vegetable seeds. (2) Impurities of grain removed during the cleaning process. (3) The second-largest size of broken rice fragments. See 2nd heads, Brewers rice and Broken(s).
Screwworm: Fly maggots, laid in animal wounds, that feed on both the wounds and surrounding sound tissue, resulting in serious wounds that cause injury and death.
Scrotal circumference: A measure of testes size obtained by measuring the distance around the testicles in the scrotum with a circular tape. Measured for semen-producing capacity.
SCS: Soil Conservation Service
SDA: Socially disadvantaged
SDS: Sudden Death Syndrome
SDWA: Safe Drinking Water Act
SE: Salmonella enteritidis
SEARCH grants for small communities: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Secs. 6301-6304), a program to allocate $1 million each year to each USDA state Rural Development director. With guidance from an independent citizen’s council in that state, the director makes grants that would help communities with less than 2,500 residents address one or more environmental projects, so as to be in compliance with state or federal environmental law by helping eligible communities fund required initial feasability or environmental reviews.
Seasonal agricultural worker(s): A person employed in agricultural work of a seasonal or other temporary nature who is not required to be absent overnight from his or her permanent place of residence. Such a worker is covered by the Migrant and Seasonal Agricultural Worker Protection Act when the worker is performing field work or when the worker is employed in a packing or processing operation and is transported by day haul. Exceptions are immediate family members of an agricultural employer or a farm labor contractor and temporary H-2A foreign workers.
Seasonal residue management: See Residue management (seasonal).
Second AMTA (payment): See Marketing loss (assistance) payments.
Second crop: (1) Under the Agricultural Risk Protection Act of 2000, the second planting of the first crop on the same acreage in the same crop year, if the replanting is required or permitted by the terms of the crop insurance policy on the first crop. A cover crop, planted after a first crop, that is hayed, grazed, or harvested will be considered a second crop. See First crop, Replant(ing); replanted crop, and Prevented (from) planting; prevented from being planted (PP). (2) See Ratoon crop(ping).
Second heads: See 2nd heads.
Second Morrill Act of 1890: See 2nd Morrill Act (1890).
Second pick(ing): See Pick(ed)(ing), and Scrap(ped)(ping).
Secondary (resale) markets for agricultural loans: See Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation (Farmer Mac).
Secondary agriculture: Under the Fair Labor Standards Act, any activities or practices performed by a farmer (including employees of a farmer) or on a farm as an incident to or in conjunction with such farming operations. These activities include preparing commodities for market and delivering commodities to storage, to market, or to a carrier for transporting to market. See Primary agriculture.
Secondary and Two-Year Postsecondary Agriculture Education Challenge Grants Program (SPEC): Under Sec. 1417(j) of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (7 U.S.C. § 3152(j)), the Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service grants program to promote and strengthen secondary and 2-year postsecondary food and agricultural sciences education.
Secondary market: An organized market in which existing financial assets are bought and sold. Examples are the New York Stock Exchange, bond markets, over-the-counter markets, and the more recently formed secondary market for buying and selling farm mortagage loans and guaranteed Farm Service Agency loans (called Farmer Mac). See Federal Agricultural Mortgage Corporation (Farmer Mac).
Section: A tract of land one-mile square containing 640 acres.
Section 0502: See Single-family direct and guaranteed housing loans.
Section 0504: See Rural housing loans and grants (RHS).
Section 0514: See Farm labor housing loans and grants.
Section 0516: See Farm labor housing loans and grants.
Section 0521: See Rental assistance.
Section 0523: See Mutual Self-Help Housing program.
Section 0524: See Rural Housing Site loans.
Section 0533: See Housing Preservation grants program.
Section 0538: See Multifamily rural rental guarantee loan program.
Section 15 lands: Section 15 of the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934 establishes lands outside grazing districts for which the Bureau of Land Management leases grazing allotments (approximately 17 million acres). See Section 3 lands.
Section 18: The Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act authorizes the Environmental Protection Agency to allow states to use a pesticide for an unregistered use for a limited time if EPA determines that emergency conditions exist.
Section 201: A provision of the Trade Act of 1974 that allows the President to provide relief to industries hurt by competing imports. Growers or trade associations must petition the International Trade Commission to investigate complaints of trade practices. The Act requires the U.S. International Trade Commission to investigate petitions filed by domestic industries or workers claiming injury or threat of injury due to expanding imports. Investigations must be completed within six months. If such injury is found, restrictive measures may be implemented. Action under Section 201 is allowed under the escape clause, GATT Article XIX, and the Uruguay Round Agreement on Safeguards. See 201 Lamb Meat.
Section 201 (19 U.S.C. § 2251): A provision of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended, that allows the President to provide relief to industries hurt by competing imports. Growers or trade associations must petition the International Trade Commission to investigate complaints of trade practices. The Act requires the U.S. International Trade Commission to investigate petitions filed by domestic industries or workers claiming injury or threat of injury due to expanding imports. Investigations must be completed within six months. If such injury is found, restrictive measures may be implemented. Action under Section 201 is allowed under the escape clause, GATT Article XIX, and the Uruguay Round Agreement on Safeguards. Also Trade relief and Safeguard relief. See 201 Lamb Meat and Global Safeguard investigations.
Section 203: Part of the Trade Act of 1974 that allows a positive adjustment to import competition. Requests may be filed by an entity, including a trade association, firm, certified or recognized union, or group of workers, that is representative of an industry.
Section 203 (19 U.S.C. § 2253): Part of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended, that allows a positive adjustment to import competition. Requests may be filed by an entity, including a trade association, firm, certified or recognized union, or group of workers, that is representative of an industry.
Section 22: A section of the Agricultural Adjustment Act Amendment of 1935 (P.L. 73-10; amended the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933) that authorized the imposition of import quotas or fees on imports of price-support program commodities when these measures are necessary to prevent imports from interfering with the operation of U.S. support programs on the products involved. In 1955, the U.S. obtained a GATT waiver for quantitative import restrictions applicable to commodities specified under Section 22. The President is to impose tariffs of up to 50 percent of the value of the imported products, or import quotas of up to 50 percent of the quantity of imports in a representative period. This authorization is currently in use to restrictimports of dairy products, peanuts, sugar, and tobacco. Absolute import quotas authorized under Section 22 have been converted to tariff-rate quotas following passage of the Uruguay Round Agreements Act. See Uruguay Round Agreement(s); Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture (URAA).
Section 2501 (program) (projects): See Outreach and assistance for socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers.
Section 3 lands: Section 3 of the Taylor Grazing Act of 1934 establishes lands within grazing districts for which the Bureau of Land Management issues grazing permits (approximately 150 million acres). See Section 15 lands.
Section 301: A provision of the Trade Act of 1974 that allows the President to take appropriate action to persuade a foreign government to remove any act, policy, or practice that violates an international agreement. The provision also applies to practices of a foreign government that are unjustified, unreasonable, or discriminatory and that burden or restrict U.S. commerce. Under Section 301, if the President determines that the alleged practices violate a trade agreement or are unjustifiable, unreasonable, or discriminatory and burden or restrict U.S. commerce, and that action is appropriate, the law directs that all appropriate and feasible action within the President’s power should be taken to secure the elimination of the practice. See Special 301, and Super 301.
Section 301 (19 U.S.C. § 2411): A provision of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended, that allows the President to take appropriate action to persuade a foreign government to remove any act, policy, or practice that violates an international agreement. The provision also applies to practices of a foreign government that are unjustified, unreasonable, or discriminatory, and that burden or restrict U.S. commerce. Under Section 301, if the President determines that the alleged practices violate a trade agreement or are unjustifiable, unreasonable, or discriminatory, and burden or restrict U.S. commerce, and that action is appropriate, the law directs that all appropriate and feasible action within the President’s power should be taken to secure the elimination of the practice. See Special 301 and Super 301.
Section 319 (33 U.S.C. § 1329): Section 319 of the Water Quality Act of 1987 established the Nonpoint Source Management Program to provide greater federal leadership to help focus state and local nonpoint source pollution efforts. States, territories, and Indian tribes can receive grant money for demonstration projects, technical assistance, financial assistance, education, training, technology transfer, and monitoring to assess the success of specific nonpoint source pollution implementation projects. See Clean Water Act of 1972 and Section 319(h) funds.
Section 319(h) funds: Funds provided to designated state and tribal agencies under authority of the Clean Water Act to implement approved nonpoint source management programs. State and tribal nonpoint source programs include technical assistance, financial assistance, education, training, technology transfer, demonstration projects, and regulatory programs. Each year, the EPA awards funds to states in accordance with a state-by-state allocation formula that EPA has developed in consultation with the states. See Section 319.
Section 32: A section of the Agricultural Adjustment Act Amendment of 1935 (7 U.S.C. § 612c; amended the Agricultural Adjustment Act of 1933) that authorizes the use of customs receipts for (a) encouraging exports of agricultural commodities, (b) encouraging domestic consumption of surplus agricultural commodities by the poor and by schoolchildren, and (c) re-establishing producers’ bargaining power. It is funded by a continuing appropriation of 30 percent of the import duties imposed on selected agricultural and nonagricultural products. Domestic acquisition and donations constitute the major use of Section 32. The funds may be used as export subsidies, as payments to producers, or to cover the costs of distribution of goods to charitable institutions, schools, and directly to the needy. It has also been used to fund programs such as disaster assistance and emergency commodity purchases and for meeting other contingencies.
Section 402: See Jackson-Vanik (Amendment)
Section 404: A provision of the Clean Water Act of 1972 that requires a landowner to obtain a permit from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers prior to beginning any nonexempt activity involving the placement of dredged or fill material in the water of the United States, including wetlands. Certain agricultural practices are exempt. Permits are either individual permits issued to single persons to authorize specific actions or general permits issued to the public-at-large that authorize specific activities that are deemed to have a minimal impact. See Isolated waters, and Swampbuster.
Section 406 (7 U.S.C. § 7626): Section 406 of the Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act of 1998 authorized the USDA to establish a competitive grants program that provides funding for integrated, multifunctional agricultural research, extension, and education activities. The USDA may award grants to colleges and universities (as defined by Section 1404 of the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act of 1977 (NARETPA) (7 U.S.C. 3103)) on a competitive basis for projects that address priorities in U.S. agriculture and involve integrated research, education, and extension activities, as determined by the USDA in consultation with the National Agricultural Research, Extension, Education, and Economics Advisory Board. The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 reauthorized the program (Sec. 7125) and further amended section 406(b) of AREERA to add the 1994 land grant institutions as eligible to apply for grants under this authority (Sec. 7206). Also Integrated Research, Education, and Extension Competitive Grants Program. See Integrated Activities and IPM Section 406 Program.
Section 416(b): A section of the Agricultural Act of 1949 intended to facilitate the disposal of surplus agricultural commodities to prevent waste. It permits donations of agricultural products to public and private nonprofit humanitarian organizations, foreign governments, and international organizations. Prior to 1985, donations under this provision were limited to dairy products, wheat, and rice. The Food Security Act of 1985 also mandated that certain minimum quantities of uncommitted stocks ofgrain, oilseeds, and dairy products be distributed as long as surpluses persist. As a bona fide overseas food aid program that is not used to circumvent export subsidy reduction commitments, Section 416(b) is consistent with the Uruguay Round Agreement on Agriculture.
Section 502: See Single-family direct and guaranteed housing loans.
Section 504: See Rural housing loans and grants (RHS).
Section 514: See Farm labor housing loans and grants.
Section 516: See Farm labor housing loans and grants.
Section 521: See Rental assistance.
Section 523: See Mutual Self-Help Housing program.
Section 524: See Rural Housing Site loans.
Section 533: See Housing Preservation grants program.
Section 538: See Multifamily rural rental guarantee loan program.
Section 7 consultations: Section 7 of the Endangered Species Act directs all federal agencies to use their existing authorities to conserve threatened species and endangered species, and in consultation with the Fish and Wildlife Service, to ensure that their actions do not jeopardize listed species or destroy or adversely modify critical habitat. Section 7 applies to management of federal lands as well as other federal actions that may affect listed species, such as federal approval of private activities through the issuance of federal permits, licenses, or other actions.
Secured party: A person in whose favor a security interest is given, a consignor, a holder of an agricultural lien, or a person who purchases accounts, payment intangibles, chattel paper, or promissory notes.
Security agreement: Under Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, a contract that creates a security interest. See Security interest.
Security interest: Under Article 9 of the Uniform Commercial Code, an interest in personal property or fixtures that secures payment or performance of an obligation.
SED: State Executive Director (FSA and RD, USDA)
Sediment(s): (1) Particles produced by the actions of weathering and erosion that break down pre-existing rocks by physical and chemical processes. Sediment is then transported by wind, water, or ice to the site of deposition. Sediments are classified on the basis of the origin, size, and mineralogical composition of the particles. (2) Suspended, extraneous matter in liquids.
Seed bank: The collection of seeds available for germination in the soil.
Seed cleaning: The separating of seeds from seed heads, twigs, chaff, debris, and dirt.
Seed cotton: Cotton as it comes from the field.
Seed drill: See Drill(ing).
Seed germination test: A test to determine the percentage of germinating seed within a given unit of seed and under certain conditions. See Accelerated aging test, Cold germination test, Tetrazolium test (TZ), and Warm germination test.
Seed piracy: The illegal labeling and selling of proprietary crop seed protected by federal patent laws and the Plant Variety Protection Act. See Brown-bagging, and Saved seed(s).
Seed protectant: A chemical applied before planting to protect seeds and seedlings from disease or insects. See Seed treatment(s).
Seed sizing: The separating of seed by length, width, or density to assist in achieving a uniform sowing rate.
Seed treatment(s); A treatment of seed, either in commercial facilities or on the farm, designed to improve uniform seedling emergence, protect seeds and seedlings from early season diseases and insect pests, and to enhance growth performance during the growing season. Treatments can be by flowable or liquid materials or through the use of dusts or powders with special adhesives added.
Seedbed: See Bed.
Seedling(s): (1) Live trees of commercial species with diameters less than one inch that are expected to survive (not diseased and not heavily damaged by logging, browsing, or fire). Only softwood seedlings over six inches tall and hardwood seedlings over one foot tall are counted. (2) A young plant that ranges from newly sprouted up to a few weeks old.
Seedstock (operation): A specialized cow-calf operation that generally produces purebred or registered cattle. The goal of seedstock production is to make genetic improvements in cattle that benefit the entire beef industry. Improvements in purebred cattle are documented through the extensive recording systems maintained by both the producer and breed organizations. See Registered cattle.
Seedstock breeders: Producers of breeding stock for purebred and commercial breeders. Seedstock breeders seek an optimum or desirable combination of economical traits (genetic package) that will ultimately increase the profitability of commercial animal production.
Segregation: The establishment and monitoring of separate production and marketing channels for GM and non-GM products.
Segregation I, II, III (peanuts): Grades designated and defined for peanuts by the Agricultural Marketing Service.
Select harvest: See Selective cutting.
Selection: The causing or allowing of certain individuals in a population to produce offspring in the next generation.
Selection differential (reach): The difference between the average for a trait in selected cattle and the average of the group from which they came. The expected response from selection for a trait is equal to the selection differential times the heritability of the trait.
Selection index: A formula that combines performance records for several traits or different measurements of the same trait into a single value for each animal. Selection indexes weigh the traits for their relative net economic importance and their inherit abilities, plus the genetic associations among the traits.
Selective cutting: The selective harvesting of intermediate-aged, mature, or diseased trees in a forest stand, either as single trees or small groups of trees. This harvesting technique encourages the growth of younger trees and maintains stand development.
Selective embargo: The restricting of export sales of commodities and food products but not of other exports.
Selective pesticide (herbicide): A chemical designed to affect only certain types of pests, leaving other non-target plants and animals unharmed. See Non-target organisms.
Self-help housing grants: See Mutual and Self-help housing grants.
Self-help housing land development loans: Rural Housing Service revolving fund for the making of loans to public and private nonprofit organizations for the acquisition and development of land as building sites to be subdivided and sold to eligible families, nonprofit organizations, and cooperatives.
Self-pollinated (pollination): Plant pollination as a result of pollen being transferred directly to the stigma within the flower. Self-pollinated crops include wheat, soybeans, and rice. Seeds harvested from self-pollinated crops are genetically identical to what was planted. SeeHybrid(s).
Self-regulatory organization: Any nongovernmental body, including any securities or futures exchange or futures market, clearing agency, or other organization or association, that exercises its own delegated regulatory or supervisory authority over financial service providers or financial institutions.
Self-supply(ied) (water) (use): Water withdrawn from a groundwater or surface water source by a user rather than being obtained from a public supply.
Selling hedge: The selling of futures contracts to protect against possible declining prices of commodities that will be sold in the future. At the time the cash commodities are sold, the open futures position is closed by purchasing an equal number and type of futures contracts as those initially sold. See Hedge(s); hedging.
Semolina: A coarse separation of endosperm extracted from durum wheat that is used for making macaroni, spaghetti, and egg noodles.
Senior Scientific Research Service (SSRS): The cadre of researchers who are provided pay incentives that go above the classifications and maximum general scheduled pay rates. Such incentives are needed to entice superior scientists with records of outstanding research to stay in public service or to remain within a particular federal agency. The USDA was allowed this protection with passage of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7219).
Seniors Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (SFMNP): The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 4402) authorizes the USDA to carry out and expand a seniors farmers’ market nutrition program to (a) provide fresh, nutritious, unprepared, locally grown fruits, vegetables, and herbs from farmers’ markets, roadside stands, and community supported agriculture programs to low-income seniors; (b) increase the domestic consumption of agricultural commodities by expanding or aiding in the expansion of domestic farmers’ markets, roadside stands, and community supported agriculture programs; and (c) develop or aid in the development of new and additional farmers’ markets, roadside stands, and community supported agriculture programs. See Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program (FMNP).
Sensitive species: All species that are under status review, have small or declining populations, or live in unique habitats. They may also be species needing special management. Sensitive species include threatened species, endangered species, and proposed species as classified by the Fish and Wildlife Service. In the Forest Service, sensitive species are designated by regional foresters.
Separate person(s): For payment limitation purposes, an individual or entity with a separate and distinct interest in the land or crop involved, who exercises separate responsibility for that interest, and who maintains separate funds or accounts. See Person(s).
Separately eligible: Under 7 USC § 1308-1(b)(1) for payment limitation purposes, a separate person who is actively engaged in farming. See Person(s).
Sequential cropping: The growing of two or more crops in a sequence, planting a succeeding crop after the harvesting of the previous one. See Double-crop(ping)(ped), Intercropping, Mixed cropping, Ratoon crop(ping), and Relay cropping.
Sequester: Across-the-board spending cuts as required by the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Deficit Reduction Act.
Sequestration; The required reduction of government expenditures under the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Deficit Reduction Act, if the federal budget did not meet deficit reduction goals. See Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Deficit Reduction Act.
Sequestration; sequester: Under the Gramm-Rudman-Hollings Deficit Reduction Act, the required reduction of government expenditures through automatic across-the-board spending cuts if the federal budget did not meet deficit reduction goals.
SERD: Science and Education Resources Development
Series: See Soil series.
Serious prejudice: Occurs when export subsidies or domestic support subsidies of one country significantly impair another country’s market opportunities, either through product displacement or price undercutting.
Serotype: A population of an organism or cell that possesses identical antigens as identified by specific antibodies.
Serotyping: A technique that uses antibodies to help identify an organism or cell.
Service: One or more matings, within a single period, of a female in heat.
Sesame; sesame seed: A plant, native to Asia, from whose seeds oil can be extracted to be used in cooking, medicines, soaps, and cosmetics.
Set stocking: The practice of allowing a fixed number of animals on a fixed area of land during the time when grazing is allowed.
Set-aside(s): (1) A former voluntary program to limit production by restricting the use of land. Introduced in 1970 and authorized for wheat and feedgrains only in the Agriculture and Food Act of 1981 (but not since), set-asides could be implemented at the discretion of the USDA. When a set-aside program was in effect, the total of the planted acreage of the designated crops and the set-aside acreage could not exceed the normal crop acreage. Producers must comply to be eligible for price-support loan programs or deficiency payments. (2) The acreage a producer must devote to soil conserving uses (such as grasses, legumes, and small grains that are not allowed to mature), in order to be eligible for production adjustment payments and price-support loans and purchases. All such authority was eliminated with the enactment of the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 and not reauthorized in the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002. (3) The delay of scheduled payments on farm debt. (4) Under the former peanut program for farms with no quota, up to 25 percent of the total amount of farm poundage quota allocated in the state was allocated to farms in the state for which nofarm poundage quota was established for the immediately preceding year’s crop. The allocation to any such farm could not exceed the average farm production of peanuts for the three immediately preceding years during which peanuts were produced on the farm. See Disaster Debt Set-Aside Program.
Settle: To become pregnant or conceive.
Settlement price(s): The closing range of prices after a trading session, used to calculate gains and losses, margin calls, and invoice prices for deliveries in futures market accounts.
SFMNP: Seniors Farmers’ Market Nutrition Program
SFSP: Summer Food Service Program
Share lease: See Crop-share lease.
Share(d)(ing) in the risk of production: A direct financial stake in the success of the crop through a direct share in the actual proceeds from the actual marketing of the crop. The share is conditional upon the success of that marketing.
Sharecropper: Typically, one who farms land of a landowner, providing labor and often residing on the farm, in exchange for a share of the crop. The landowner usually provides the land, inputs, and supervision.
Sharecropper protection: Provisions in some state and federal legislation (Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, Secs. 1105(d), 1305(d), 2001 [Food Security Act of 1985 as amended, Sec. 1238C(d)], and 10904) designed to insure that both share croppers and landowners equitably share farm program benefits or that sharecroppers are not adversely impacted by farm program provisions.
Shared appreciation agreement (SAA): An agreement between the Farm Service Agency and a producer– borrower following a debt write-down in which the borrower promises to pay a certain amount of money from the time of the restructuring to the occurrence of a recapture event if the property securing the agreement increases in value, thus allowing the recapture of all or a portion of the debt write-down amount. See Recapture event.
Shear(ed)(ing): The use of electric shears to remove the fleece from a sheep, usually in less than five minutes. An expert shearer can shear more than 100 sheep in one day.
Sheep breeds: In the U.S., breeds include the Barbados, Border Leicester, California Red, Cheviot, Corriedale, Cotswold, Debouillet, Delaine Merino, Dorset, Finnsheep, Gulf Coast Native, Hampshire, Hog Island, Jacob, Karakul, Leicester Longwool, Lincoln, Montadale, Navajo Churro, Oxford, Polpay, Rambouillet, Romanov, Romney, Santa Cruz Island, Scottish Blackface (Highland), Shetland, Shropshire, Southdown, St. Croix, Suffolk, Targhee, Tunis, and Wiltshire Horn.
Sheep Promotion, Research, and Information Act of 1994 (Sheep Act) (P.L. 103-407): Signed into law October 22, 1994. The Act authorized a national referendum on the adoption of a mandatory assessment to enable producers and feeders of sheep and importers of sheep and sheep products to develop, finance, and carry out a nationally coordinated program for sheep and sheep product promotion, research, and information. The referendum was defeated in 1996. Authority for reimbursement of expenses under the Act was repealed in the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 7302).
Sheet erosion: A type of erosion that leads to a generally uniform removal of topsoil over all of a field as a result of strong rains. See Erosion.
Shelf-stable (products): Foods that are able to be stored unrefrigerated for a period of time and remain suitable for consumption. Generally, these include all processed foods brought to commercial sterility by the application of heat, chemicals, irradiation, fermentation, pasteurization, or other processes. Safety and palatability are achieved by (a) eliminating the growth of aerobic and anaerobic organisms, and (b) retarding unwanted chemical reactions, moisture movement, or moisture loss.
Shell-egg handlers: Any business that grades and packs shell eggs for commercial distribution and hatcheries.
Sheller(s) (peanuts): One who shells peanuts in a shelling plant.
Shellfish: (1) A collective term for molluscs and crustacea. (2) Oysters, mussels, clams, lobsters, shrimp, crabs, and crawfish. See Finfish.
Shelling plant (peanuts); shelled: The process of removing peanuts from peanut shells, including (a) removal of sand, stones, sticks, and trash by conveying the nuts through a series of over and under screens; (b) removal of metal by magnets; (c) gravity flow of in-shell nuts through a series of shellers and separators; (d) separation of shelled nuts into at least four grades by size screens; (e) passing edible grades over inspection belts and through electronic sorters; and (f) packaging.
Shelterbelt(s): See Windbreak(s).
Shigellosis: Contagious foodborne and waterborne illness. Outbreaks are difficult to control. See Foodborne illness(es).
Shipping holiday(s): A fruit and vegetable marketing order provision that prohibits commercial shipping during periods following certain holidays when demand is historically low. Shipping holidays usually include the three- to seven-day period after Thanksgiving and Christmas.
Shoat: A young pig that has been weaned.
Shock: A pile of grain that is set up like a cone.
Shock analysis: The analyzing of the strengths and weaknesses of a business or policy option by introducing extreme variables and estimating the results.
SHOP: Small Hog Operation Payment Program
Shorn: See Shear(ed)(ing).
Short: See Go(ing) short.
Short grain (rice): Rice that is a little shorter (rounder) than medium grain rice. As a rule, the shorter the grain, the more tender and clinging it cooks.
Short rotation intensive culture (SRIC): The growing of tree crops for bioenergy or fiber, characterized by detailed site preparation, usually less than 10 years between harvests, usually fast-growing hybrid trees, and intensive forest management (some fertilization, weed and pest control, and possibly irrigation).
Short rotation woody crop (SRWC): Trees grown as environmentally managed resources, usually of the same age, under intensive forest management to shorten planting rotations to typically ten years or less.
Short selling: The selling of a futures contract with the idea of delivering on it or offsetting it at a later date.
Short the basis: The purchase of futures as a hedge against a commitment to sell in the cash or spot markets.
Short ton(s): Two thousand pounds.
Short yearling: An animal that is over one year of age but under 18 months of age.
Short-Term Export Credit Guarantee Program: See Export Credit Guarantee Programs (GSM-102 and GSM-103), and GSM-102.
Show animal(s): Any animal used for competition of judging animals against each other. Often, such animals are judged as part of a 4-H or FFA stock show competition.
Show list: Slaughter cattle that are ready for the cattle feeder to show to the packers.
Shrink; shrink factor: See Pencil shrink(age).
Shrinkage: (1) A reduction in length or width of a material caused by certain treatments, especially washing. (2) A loss of weight and volume of raw wool due to scouring when grease, sweat, vegetable matter, and other foreign material are removed; expressed as a percentage of the original weight. (3) See Pencil shrink(age). (4) See Chilled-carcass weight. (5) See Farm-to-plant loss(es). (6) The loss of product during transportation, storage, or processing.
Shrinkage and overage (dairy): See Overage and shrinkage (dairy).
Shrubland: Areas covered with plants that have persistent woody stems and relatively low growth habits where the shrub canopy accounts for at least 25 to 100 percent of the cover. Shrub plants include cactus, mesquite, sagebrush, and thick brush found in wet and mountainous areas.
SIAP: Supplemental Income Assistance Program
Sibs: Brothers and sisters of individual animals.
Side dressing: The placement of fertilizer to one side of the plant or on every other row at planting or during the growing season. See Band(ed) application; banding.
Sign(ing)(ed)-up: To enroll in a commodity program or other USDA program. See Producer agreement(s).
Significant contribution: In order to be considered as actively engaged in farming for payment limitation purposes, a producer has to make a significant contribution of capital, land, or equipment to the farming operation, as well as a significant contribution of active personal labor or active personal management. The contribution of management must be critical to the profitability of the farming operation, taking into consideration the individual’s or entity’s commensurate share in the farming operation.
Silage: Prepared by chopping green forage (such as grass, legumes, and field corn) and placing it into an air-tight chamber where it is compressed to exclude air and undergoes acid fermentation that retards spoilage. It contains about 65 percent moisture. The main use of silage is for cattle feed.
Silt: The fine-grained particles of soil that are smaller than sand and larger than clay.
Siltation: The filling-in of lakes and stream channels with soil particles, usually as a result of erosion on adjacent land.
Silviculture; silvacultural: The theory and practice of controlling the establishment, composition, constitution, and growth of forests.
Silvipastoral; silvopastoral: An agroforestry system that includes forage plants, controlled livestock grazing, and trees. In pine forest lands, it is also known as “pine-and-pasture” or “cattle-under-pine.” See Forest grazing.
Similar entity: A person that is not eligible for a Farm Credit System loan, yet has an operation that is functionally similar to a person that is eligible for such, in that the person derives a majority of the income or has a majority of the assets invested in the conduct of activities that are functionally similar to the activities that are conducted by an eligible person.
Single-blind experiment: An experiment during which the research subjects do not know whether they are receiving an experimental treatment or a placebo. See Double-blind experiment.
Single-family direct and guaranteed housing loans: Commonly known as Section 502 loans, the Rural Housing Service provides homeownership to low- and very-low income families who are without adequate housing. For those unable to get credit from other sources, direct loans of between one percent and 6.5 percent are available for 30 to 38 years. Guaranteed loans for up to 100 percent of market value can be provided to lenders for 30-year loans. The RHS will provide a 90 percent guarantee to lenders.
Sinkhole(s): A depression in a karst area, commonly with a circular pattern. Its drainage is subterranean, its size is measured in meters and tens of meters, and it is commonly funnel shaped.
SIP: Stewardship Incentive Program
Sire(s): Male parent.
Site management plan: A plan that provides information regarding land application of animal waste. Such a plan includes maps showing where the waste is to be applied, a description of the vegetative cover in the application area, and a land-use agreement if the land is not owned by the owner of the confined livestock operation.
Site-specific farming (SSF): See Precision farming.
Sixteen contiguous Western states: Under the Public Rangelands Improvement Act of 1978, for purposes of federal grazing regulations on public rangelands, Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Kansas, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, North Dakota, Oklahoma, Oregon, South Dakota, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. See Eleven contiguous Western states.
SK/FB: Soup Kitchen/Food Bank Program
Skidding: The moving or yarding of trees from the felling site to a loading area or landing, using humans, tractors, horses, or specialized logging equipment.
Skim milk; skimmilk; skimmed milk: Milk that has had the fat removed. The dry form of skim milk is known as nonfat dry milk or powder.
Skip-row: A planting pattern or row configuration that is not solidly continuous across the field, but rather two rows spaced 38 inches apart, followed by a skip of 64 inches, then followed by another two rows 38 inches apart and a 64-inch skip, and repeated in this fashion across the field. It is used primarily for cotton, although the use is limited.
Skirting: Removing the stained, unusable, or undesirable portions of a fleece.
Slash: Branches, tree tops, bark, cull trees, and other woody debris left on the ground after an area is logged. Also known as brush.
Slash and burn cultivation: Type of agriculture where trees and other vegetation are cut down in a patch of forest, dried, and then burned to release nutrients stored in biomass. The nutrient-rich ash is then used to fertilize the planted crops. Plots are abandoned after the nutrients are depleted.
Slaughter cattle: All fed cattle and canners and cutters sold for slaughter.
Slaughter data: All of the applicable data for all swine slaughtered by a packer during the applicable reporting period, regardless of when the price of the swine was negotiated or otherwise determined, reported by hog class, type of purchase, and packer-owned swine.
Slippage: Under former programs, a term used to refer to the case of producers thwarting the government’s attempt to reduce output through voluntary cropland diversion programs. Participating producers do so through diversion of inferior cropland and by substituting nonland inputs for land. In addition, nonparticipating producers may bring new land into production in anticipation of higher prices as a result of the acreage reduction program requirements for those who enroll in the programs. Slippage is calculated as the proportion of acreage set aside or put into a reserve program for which there is no corresponding reduction in production of the crops for which output reduction is sought.
Slit seeding: Seeding or overseeding using a specially designed machine that utilizes a series of vertically rotating discs to cut small grooves into the soil while depositing seed into the grooves just behind the discs.
Slope: The average inclination of a surface measured from the horizontal, generally expressed as the ratio of a unit of vertical distance to a given number of units of horizontal distance. It may also be expressed as a percent or in degrees.
Slope length (factor) (L): The ratio of soil loss from the field slope length to that from a 72.6-foot length on the same soil type and gradient. Slope length is the distance from the origin of overland flow along its flow path to the location of either concentrated flow or deposition. See Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE), and Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE).
Small (farmer and rancher): Under the Farm Credit System’s young, beginning, and small (YBS) initiative, a farmer, rancher, producer or harvester having sustained gross sales from agriculture of less than $250,000 annually.
Small and emerging private business enterprise: Under the Rural Business Enterprise grants program, any private business that will employ 50 or fewer new employees and has less than $1 million in projected gross revenues.
Small Business Innovation Research Program (SBIR): First authorized by the Small Business Innovation Development Act (P.L. 97-219), as amended. A program designed to strengthen the role of small, innovative firms in federally funded research and development. Under the program, small firms will receive at least 2.5 percent of research and development awards made by federal agencies with sizable research and development budgets.
Small Farm Coordinators: The USDA has a department-wide group of coordinators representing each mission area, individual agencies, and the Office of Outreach, Office of Civil Rights, Office of Budget and Program Analysis, Office of Communications, Office of the Chief Economist, and the Office of the General Council that provides a focal point to coordinate small farm policy and programs within USDA. They are responsible for planning, recommending, and coordinating the implementation of small farms policies and programs. See Advisory Committee on Small Farms, Assisting America’s Small Farmers and Ranchers in the 21st Century, Small farm(s), and Small Farm Council.
Small Farm Council: Established by the USDA in September 1999 following the expiration of the term of the National Commission on Small Farms. It is chaired by the Deputy Secretary. Membership is comprised of the Under Secretary, Marketing and Regulatory Programs; Under Secretary, Farm and Foreign Agricultural Services; Under Secretary, Food, Nutrition and Consumer Services; Under Secretary, Food Safety; Under Secretary, Natural Resources and Environment; Under Secretary, Research, Education, and Economics; Under Secretary, Rural Development; Assistant Secretary, Administration; Office of Outreach Director; and the Office of Civil Rights Director. The Director of Sustainable Development and Small Farms, Office of the Chief Economist, will serve as the Executive Director of the Small Farms Council and is responsible for coordinating, advocating, and facilitating implementation of small farms policies and programs. The Executive Director also chairs a department-wide group of small farm coordinators. See Advisory Committee on Small Farms, and Assisting America’s Small Farmers and Ranchers in the 21st Century.
Small farm(s): (1) Generally, farms having less than $100,000 annually in crop or livestock sales. Many of these are not full-time, commercial farms. (2) Farms having less than $250,000 in gross receipts, with labor and management provided by the owners. According to the National Commission on Small Farms, small farms make up 94 percent of the nation’s agriculture, yet earn only 41 percent of all farm receipts. (3) The aggregated number of limited-resource farms, retirement farms, residential/lifestyle farms, and farming occupation farms. Such farms account for 72 percent of farm assets, including 74 percent of the land in farms.
Small Farmer Outreach Training and Technical Assistance Program: See Outreach and assistance for socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers.
Small farms policy(ies) (USDA): It is the policy of the USDA to (a) develop and support research, development, regulatory, and outreach programs and initiatives that focus on the special needs of small farms, especially those programs that help small farms develop alternative enterprises, value-added products, and collaborative marketing efforts, including cooperatives, that enhance stewardship of biological, natural, human, and community resources; (b) make special efforts to meet the credit needs of small, under-served, minority, women, and beginning farmers and ranchers; (c) consider the special needs of and specific effects on small farms when developing and implementing marketing, incentive, and regulatory programs and processes; (d) develop and foster marketing, development, credit, and outreach programs that improve the competitiveness of small farms and give priority to farmer-owned and farm-based businesses, especially those that foster local and regional competition in production, processing, and distribution of food, fiber, and wood products that connect small farms and consumers at the local and regional levels; (e) foster collaboration among public and private sector agencies, programs, and institutions, including farm and community-based organizations, to meet the financial, educational, and technological needs of small farms, including developing small farms networks, joint enterprises, and mentoring systems; (f) encourage and emphasize educational, outreach, marketing regulatory, credit, and other programs that will help ensure new generations of small farmers can gain access to the resources they need; and (g) encourage all USDA agencies, the land grant institutions, and collaborating public and private sector institutions to emphasize sustainable agriculture, sustainable forestry, and agroforestry as profitable, environmentally sound, and socially desirable strategies for small farms. See Advisory Committee on Small Farms, Assisting America’s Small Farmers and Ranchers in the 21st Century, Building on a Time to Act, Small Farm Coordinators, and Small Farm Council.
Small grain(s): Crops with small kernels such as wheat, barley, oats, rice, triticale, and rye.
Small Hog Operation Payment Program (SHOP): Implemented by the USDA on January 8, 1999, the Farm Service Agency program utilized Section 32 funds to compensate hog producers impacted by a plunge in market prices. Begun as a $50 million program, additional funds were authorized by the Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, FY1999, which also removed the 25 percent limitation on the amount of Section 32 funds that may be devoted to any one agricultural commodity or product. The supplemental funding provided additional payments to producers who sold hogs and pigs during the last six months of 1998. Producers were eligible for payments if their hog operations marketed less than 2,500 hogs during the last six months of 1998 and were still in operation. The maximum payment for any operation was $5,000.
Small Watershed Rehabilitation Program: See Watershed Rehabilitation Program.
Smaller enterprise: Under the Rural Business Investment Program, any rural business concern that, together with its affiliates, has a net financial worth of not more than $6 million and an average net income for the previous 2-year period of not more than $2 million after federal income taxes (excluding any carryover losses).
Smart cards (peanuts): Cards first issued in 1987 and used to automate the collection of peanut marketing and program data. The Farm Service Agency issued smart cards to each producer eligible to market peanuts under the peanut quota. The card contained the producer’s name, farm number, farm peanut quota in pounds, crop loan eligibility information, and transaction records. When a producer took peanuts to a buying point, the smart card was inserted into a terminal to determine whether peanuts could be purchased as quota peanuts or additional peanuts. Each marketing transaction was recorded on the system where the previous balances were maintained. At the end of the crop season, producers returned the smart card to the FSA county office so the information could be electronically reconciled to marketing information that was telecommunicated from the buying point computers to the USDA central computers. Following passage of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, smart cards are no longer used in the peanut program.
Smith-Doxey classification: Cotton classification data showing color grade, leaf grade, length, length uniformity, strength, micronaire, and trash for each bale. Producers use this information in selling their cotton or placing it in the Commodity Credit Corporation loan program. See Cotton classing; cotton classification.
Smith-Lever 3(b&c) (formula) (funds): Funds allocated for Cooperative Extension Service activities in the 50 states, and the insular areas of Puerto Rico, Guam, Virgin Islands, Micronesia, American Samoa, and Northern Mariana Islands. The District of Columbia receives extension funds through separate legislative authority. The funds are allocated on a formula basis and states are required to provide a 100 percent match from nonfederal resources, except for insular area institutions which are required to provide a 50% nonfederal match (Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002, Sec. 7213). The formula allocation is based on a state’s rural and farm population. These funds are for the discretionary use of the Cooperative Extension Service in each state to help provide locally determined programs to meet local needs.
Smith-Lever 3(b&c) (funds): Formula funds allocated to the states, based on their rural and farm population, for the discretionary use of the Cooperative Extension Service in each state to help provide locally determined programs to meet local needs.
Smith-Lever 3(d) (funds): Targeted or earmarked funds allocated to the state Cooperative Extension Service to address special concerns of regional or national importance. Funds are distributed based upon the relative need in each state for assistance in addressing the special concerns. The programs currently funded through Smith-Lever 3(d) funds are the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program, Pest Management, Pesticide Impact Assessment, Farm Safety, Rural Development Centers, Water Quality, Food Safety, Indian Reservation, Sustainable Agriculture, and the Children, Youth, and Families At Risk programs.
Smith-Lever Act (7 U.S.C. §§ 341 et seq.): Signed into law May 8, 1914. The Act created the Cooperative Extension Service system. Each state’s CES is associated with a land grant university and its agricultural experiment station.
Smith-Lever Act (of 1914) (7 U.S.C. §§ 341 et seq.): Signed into law May 8, 1914. The Act created the Cooperative Extension Service system. Each state’s CES is associated with a land grant university and its agricultural experiment station. The Act provides federal funds (Smith-Lever 3(b&c) funds) for cooperative extension activities and requires states to provide a 100 percent match from non-federal resources. The Act also authorizes special cooperative extension projects under section 3(d). Current projects funded under this authority include the Expanded Food and Nutrition Education Program (EFNEP), Farm Safety, Integrated Pest Management, and Children, Youth and Families at Risk. See Cooperative Extension System and Smith-Lever 3(d) (funds).
Smith-Lever funds: The Smith-Lever Act provides funds to be matched to help each state disseminate information gleaned from the land grant universities and agricultural experiment stations and to provide practical educational services. Smith-Lever funds are either formula funds (known as Smith-Lever 3(b&c) funds) or earmarked funds (known as Smith-Lever 3(d) funds). See Smith-Lever 3(b&c) (funds), Smith-Lever 3(d) (funds), and Hatch Act (funds, formula funds).
Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act: See Tariff Act of 1930.
SMP: Special Milk Program
Smut: A fungus that attacks grain kernels and replaces the contents with black, powdery spore masses. Smut can attack leaves, stems, and seeds. Smut rarely kills the host plant, but it can cause severe stunting of growth. Smut is second only to rustin damage caused to grain, onion, and sugarcane production. The more common smuts are corn smut, sugarcane smut, covered smut, sorghum smut, kernel smut, loose smut, and leaf smut. See Bunt, and TCK smut.
SMV: Slow-moving vehicle
SMV: A red triangular-shaped sign that is attached to the rear of a farm vehicle indicating that the vehicle is a “slow-moving vehicle.”
SMZ: Streamside management zone
Snag(s): A standing dead tree; an important source of forest habitat.
Snapping: The separation of the corn ears from the corn stalks during harvesting.
Snapshot: An analysis or review taken at a specific point in time instead of over a period of time.
Snow fence(s): See Living snow fence(s).
Snow survey: The Natural Resources Conservation Service, in cooperation with other federal and state agencies, conducts snow surveys in 11 western states and Alaska for the purposes of flood prediction, water supply prediction, and natural resource information. Snowmelt accounts for 80 percent of the streamflow in the West.
SNP: Single nucleotide polymorphism
SOAP: Sunflower Oil Assistance Program
Social forestry: The growth and management of trees where primary management decisions are made by resident individuals and groups and where the primary benefits of trees remain within the household or community. This is frequently contrasted with industrial forestry where ownership and management reside in private corporations, or reserve forestry where ownership and management reside in state governments.
Socially disadvantaged (SDA): Under USDA programs, farmers or ranchers who are one of a group whose members have been subjected to racial, ethnic, or gender prejudice, without regard to their individual qualities, because of their identity as a member of the group. Those groups previously identified as socially disadvantaged are women, African-Americans, American Indians and Alaskan Natives, Hispanics, Asians, and Pacific Islanders.
Socially disadvantaged farmers and ranchers (loans): The Farm Service Agency will make and guarantee loans to socially disadvantaged applicants to buy and operate family farms and ranches. Funds for direct and guaranteed farm operating and farm ownership loans are reserved each year. For purposes of the loan program, those groups previously identified as socially disadvantaged are women, African-Americans, American Indians and Alaskan Natives, Hispanics, Asians, and Pacific Islanders.
Sodbuster: First authorized by the Food Security Acts of 1985 (Title XII, Subtitle B, Secs. 1211-1213) (16 U.S.C. §§ 3811 et seq.). A provision designed to discourage the conversion of highly erodible cropland from extensive conserving uses to intensive agricultural production. If highly erodible grassland or woodland is used for crop production, without appropriate conservation measures, producers may lose eligibility for participation in many USDA programs.
Soft: A description of a price that is gradually weakening. It also refers to commodities such as sugar, cocoa, and coffee.
Soft currency: A currency that may not be exchanged for another currency without restrictions; an unstable currency, the value of which is likely to decline. Also referred to as inconvertible currency.
Soft loan: A credit providing for significantly easier repayment terms than credits that are normally obtainable from commercial banks. A soft loan frequently involves a grace period of several years and only a small servicing charge.
Soft products: A category of manufactured dairy products with a relatively short shelf life, including cottage cheese, sour cream, ice cream, yogurt, and buttermilk.
Soft red winter wheat: Triticum aestivum; a common wheat that is fall seeded; a low- to medium-protein wheat with a soft or floury endosperm; used primarily for making cakes and other pastries.
Soft wheat: Wheat that, due to a combination of breeding and growing environment, has a chalky (nonvitreous) endosperm suitable for making pastry flour; it yields a very fine flour consisting of irregularly shaped fragments of endosperm cells that adhere together and sift with difficulty.
Softwood(s): (1) Botanical grouping of trees that are usually evergreen and have needle-like or scale-like leaves. They are also known as conifers and coniferous trees. (2) The wood produced from such trees. The term softwood does not refer to the hardness of the wood.
Soil amendment: See Soil conditioner.
Soil and Water Conservation Assistance (SWCA): Authorized by the Agricultural Risk Protection Act of 2000 (Title II, Section 211(b)). A program that provides cost share and incentive payments to producers to voluntarily address threats to soil, water, and related natural resources includinggrazing land, wetlands, and wildlife habitat. SWCA is also designed to help landowners comply with federal and state environmental laws and make beneficial, cost-effective changes to cropping systems, grazing management, nutrient management, and irrigation.
Soil and water conservation district (SWCD): See Conservation district(s).
Soil and water loan(s): USDA conservation loans available to farmers, ranchers, and associations for the effective development and utilization of water supplies and for the improvement of farmland by soil– and water-conserving facilities and practices. Such loans have not been made since 1994.
Soil and Water Resources Conservation Act of 1977 (16 U.S.C. §§ 2001-2009): Signed into law November 18, 1977, and amended in 1985 and 1994. Provided for the assessment and long-range planning of federal programs to conserve soil, water, and related resources, under jurisdiction of the former Soil Conservation Service.
Soil application: Applications made directly to the soil surface rather than to vegetation.
Soil Bank: See Soil Bank Program.
Soil Bank Act of 1956 (P.L. 84-540): Title I of the Agricultural Act of 1956. See Soil Bank Program.
Soil Bank Program: Mandated by the Soil Bank Act of 1956. A program to decrease the supply of agricultural products by reducing the amount of land used in crop production. The program was also initiated to establish and maintain protective vegetative cover or other needed conservation practices. Land was retired for three, five, or ten years and put into a specified type of use such as grasses, trees, or water impoundments. The program provided an 80 percent cost share to convert to conservation uses. The official name of the Soil Bank was the Conservation Reserve Program. The program was voluntary, and participating producers agreed to comply with any acreage allotments on the farm and to reduce total cropped acreage by the amount of land placed in the reserve. The program operated from 1956 to 1960 with 28.7 million acres enrolled nationwide. Of this total, 2.2 million acres were planted to trees. The Soil Bank Act was repealed by the Food and Agricultural Act of 1965.
Soil chemical properties: The characteristics of soil that are defined by the composition and reaction of soil constituents such as pH and nutrient supply.
Soil classes (classification): Class I soil is deep, well-drained, good textured, with no erosion problems; Classes II through IV are increasingly unsuitable for crop production due to shallowness, erosion, wetness, dryness, or steepness; Classes V through VII are not suitable for crop production but may be suitable as pasture and rangeland; and Class VIII soil is severely limited for all uses.
Soil compaction: See Compaction.
Soil conditioner: A soil additive that stabilizes the soil, improves resistance to erosion, increases permeability to air and water, improves texture and resistance of the surface to crusting, eases cultivation, or otherwise improves soil quality. Also Soil amendment.
Soil Conservation and Domestic Allotment Act of 1936 (P.L. 74-461): Signed into law February 29, 1936. The law provided for soil conservation and soil-building payments to participating producers, but did not include strong income and price-support programs.
Soil Conservation District: See Conservation district(s).
Soil conservation loans: See Resource conservation and development loans.
Soil Conservation Service (SCS): A former USDA agency responsible for developing and carrying out national soil and water programs in cooperation with landowners, operators, and others. These functions have now been assumed by the Natural Resource and Conservation Service.
Soil depth profile: A vertical profile of distinct zones within a soil, called soil horizons. The top, or A horizon, is the zone of leaching (eluviation); it is most abundant in biomass composed of roots, bacteria, fungi, worms, and microscopic animals. The second, or Bhorizon, is the zone of accumulation (illuviation); it contains little living matter and is often richer in clays, iron, and aluminum oxides that have percolated down and accumulated from the A horizon. The C horizon is composed of the weathered rock and true parent material of the soil. See Horizon(s).
Soil erodibility: An indicator of a soil’s susceptibility to raindrop impact, runoff, and other erosive processes. See Soil erodibility (factor) (K).
Soil erodibility (factor) (K): Represents both susceptibility of soil to erosion and the rate of runoff as measured under the standard condition. The standard condition is the unit plot (an erosion plot 72.6 feet long (22.1 meters) on a nine percent slope), maintained in continuous fallow and tilled up and down hill periodically to control weeds and break crusts that form on the surface of the soil. The plots are plowed, disked, and cultivated the same for a row crop of corn or soybeans except that no crop is grown on the plot. See Erodibility (Erosion) Index (EI), Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE), and Universal Soil Loss equation (USLE).
Soil erosion: See Erosion.
Soil fertility: The measure of the capacity of soil to provide necessary nutrients for healthy plant growth. Also Soil health, and Soil quality.
Soil health: See Soil fertility.
Soil loss tolerance: See Tolerance(s).
Soil map(ping) unit: In soils mapping, a map area in which there is a predominance of one or more kinds of soil. Soil mapping unit names also reflect the general slope of the land.
Soil profile: See Soil depth profile.
Soil quality: See Soil fertility.
Soil separate(s): The soil particles of sand, silt, and clay that are no larger than 2mm in size.
Soil series: The basic unit of soil classification, consisting of soils that are alike in all major profile characteristics, except texture of the surface layer, having similar horizons in lithologically similar materials. The emphasis is on relatively permanent features rather than surface characters readily altered by treatment.
Soil solarization: A hydrothermal process of heating moist soil to destroy pests. Solarization can be used alone or in combination with other chemical or biological control agents as the framework for an integrated pest management program for soilborne pests in high-value horticultural crops grown in greenhouses and open fields.
Soil sterilant: A chemical that temporarily or permanently prevents the growth of all plants and animals.
Soil structure: The physical properties of soil based on the arrangement of soil separates into groups of particles.
Soil survey: The mapping and assessing of soil resources used for predicting soil behavior including potential erosion hazards and potential for groundwater contamination; suitability and productivity for cultivated crops, trees, and grasses; and suitability under alternative uses.
Soil taxonomy: Classifying soils according to their color, texture, structure, arrangement of horizons in the soil depth profile, and accumulation of clay, silica, carbonates, and humus.
Soil testing: An analytical assessment of the capacity of soils to supply plant nutrients. Soil testing helps determine soil pH, organic matter content, and percent of chemical composition.
Soil texture: See Texture.
Soil tilth: The soil structure of the surface layer resulting from tillage operations. A soil has good tilth when composed of crumbs that are neither too sticky when wet nor too hard when dry. This may be brought about in nature, as in certain forest and prairie soils, by organic agents. See Tilth.
Soil type: A subdivision of a soil series based mainly on the texture of the surface layer.
Soil(s): A dynamic natural body composed of mineral and organic materials and living forms in which plants grow on the surface of the earth. In the U.S. there are about 70,000 kinds of soils recognized in a nationwide system of soil classification.
Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (SWANCC) (531 U.S. 159 (2001)): A Supreme Court decision that limited federal authority under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act to regulate certain isolated waters and isolated wetlands. In SWANCC, the Supreme Court held that the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers had exceeded its CWA regulatory authority in asserting jurisdiction over isolated intrastate non-navigable waters based on the Migratory Bird Rule.
Solid Waste Management grants: Grants available for nonprofit organizations and public bodies to provide technical assistance and training to rural areas and towns of up to 10,000 to reduce or eliminate pollution of water resources and to improve planning and management of solid waste facilities.
Solids (milk): See Solids-not-fat (SNF), and Total milk solids (TMS).
Solids-not-fat (SNF): The solids in milk (protein, lactose and minerals) other than milk-fat which comprise approximately nine percent of total milk solids. Milk solids may be added to low-fat milk to enhance the flavor.
Somatic cell adjustment (rate): The cheese price multiplied by 0.0005, rounded to the fifth decimal place. The rate is per 1,000 somatic cell count above or below the base of 350,000.
Somatic cell count (SCC): A commonly used measure of milk quality. Somatic cells are present at low levels in normal milk. High levels of these cells in milk indicate abnormal, reduced-quality milk caused by mastitis.
Somatic cell(s) (dairy): Body cells that are associated with inflammation of the udder (mastitis) of dairy cows. A high concentration of somatic cells in milk indicates an abnormal condition in the udder, causes a rise in whey proteins and a decrease in casein with a resulting reduction in the cheese yield, and can cause shorter shelf life and adverse milk flavors.
Soring; sore(d): (1) A painful practice used to accentuate a horse’s gait, accomplished by irritating the forelegs through the injection or application of chemicals or mechanical irritants. When it walks, a sored horse responds by quickly lifting its front legs to relieve the pain. Sored horses sometimes develop permanent scars. (2) Under the Horse Protection Act, (a) the application of an irritating or blistering agent, internally or externally, by a person to any limb of a horse; (b) any burn, cut, or laceration that has been inflicted by a person on any limb of a horse; (c) any tack, nail, screw, or chemical agent that has been injected by a person into or used by a person on any limb of a horse; or (d) any other substance or device that has been used by a person on any limb of a horse or a person has engaged in a practice involving a horse, and as a result of such application, infliction, injection, use, or practice, such horse suffers, or can reasonably be expected to suffer, physical pain or distress, inflammation, or lameness when walking, trotting, or otherwise moving. Soring does not include such an application, infliction, injection, use, or practice in connection with the therapeutic treatment of a horse by or under the supervision of a person licensed to practice veterinary medicine.
Soundness: (1) In grain inspection, the absence or presence of musty, sour, or commercially objectionable foreign odors, and the measure of the percentage of damaged kernels present. (2) See Breeding soundness (examination) (bulls).
Soup Kitchen/Food Bank Program (SK/FB): Established in 1988, the program purchased, processed, and distributed commodities to soup kitchens and food banks. The Personal Responsibility and Work Opportunity Reconciliation Act of 1996 (P.L. 104-193) repealed the authorization forSK/FB, forcing the program beneficiaries to be absorbed into the expanded Emergency Food Assistance Program in 1997. See The Emergency Food Assistance Program (TEFAP).
Source animal: (1) An animal from which cells, tissues, and/or organs for use in xenotransplantation are obtained. (2) In animal identification and meat traceability, the birth animal or ancestor.
Source verification: Allows for a source of a particular type, kind, or quality of beef to be identified, and for a supply of that beef to be sent to the next-adjacent sector (one step closer to the consumer) with a guarantee (verification) that the beef is as specified. Production practice verification might involve assuring that no growth promotants or subtherapeutic antibiotics are used in finishing of the cattle. The USDA process verification is accreditation that the company has implemented production and processing procedures described in its “Process-Verified Program.”
Southern Dairy Compact: A proposed milk marketing compact similar to the Northeast Interstate Dairy Compact. Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia, and West Virginia approved membership in a Southern dairy compact. Texas, Florida, and Nebraska were pre-approved for joining the compact pending state approval action. Required Congressional approval for the Southern compact was considered during conference deliberations on the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2000. A threatened filibuster by upper-Midwest legislators forestalled this action. Authority for a Southern compact also was not included in the subsequent dairy legislation adopted by Congress that extended the authority of the Northeast Interstate Dairy Compact. The push for a Southern compact was blunted with the adoption of theNational Dairy Market Loss Payment Program in the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002. See Dairy compact.
Sow: Female swine having produced one or more litters.
Soy diesel: See Biodiesel.
Soy ink: An alternative to petroleum-based ink. Soybean oil ink is biodegradable and offers bright colors, a flexible lithographic performance, and low rub-off.
Soybean classes: The two classes of soybeans are yellow soybeans, and mixed soybeans.
Soybean loan origination fee: See Oilseed loan origination fee.
SPEC: Secondary and Two-Year Postsecondary Agriculture Education Challenge Grants Program
Special 301: Pursuant to Sec. 182 of the Trade Act of 1974, as amended by the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 and the Uruguay Round Agreements Act of 1994, the U.S. Trade Representative must identify those countries that deny adequate and effective protection for intellectual property rights or deny fair and equitable market access for persons that rely on intellectual property rights protection. Those countries that have the most egregious acts or policies must be designated priority countries and are subject to Section 301 investigation unless it is entering into good faith negotiations or making significant progress in bilateral or multilateral negotiations. See Section 301, and Super 301.
Special and differential treatment (S&D): The concept that exports of developing countries should be given preferential access to markets of developed countries and that developing countries participating in trade negotiations need not fully reciprocate concessions they receive. In theUruguay Round, disciplines applied to developing and least developed countries were less stringent than those applied to developed countries.
Special Apple Loan Program: The Farm Service Agency provided loans to apple producers who were suffering hardships due to low prices. The program was authorized by the Agricultural Risk Protection Act of 2000. To qualify, applicants must have produced apples formarket in either 1999 or 2000, with a minimum of 10 acres in production in either of those years. Eligible applicants could obtain loans up to $300 per acre of apple trees in production in 1999 or 2000, up to a maximum indebtedness of $500,000.
Special competitive provisions (extra-long stable cotton) (7 U.S.C. § 7236a): First authorized in the Consolidated Appropriations Act for FY2000 (Title I), which amended the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (Sec. 136A). A program designed to increase exports and maintain competitiveness ofextra-long staple (ELS) cotton in world markets. Payments were made to domestic users and exporters when the world market price was below the U.S. price for four consecutive weeks and the lowest priced competing ELS cotton was less than 134 percent of the ELS loan rate. The program was reauthorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1208) through July 31, 2008. See Upland Cotton Marketing Certificate Program.
Special Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 2101), the USDA may enter into agreement with the states (including political subdivisions and state agencies) to provide additional payments to advance the purposes of theConservation Reserve Enhancement Program.
Special grade(s): The federal grain and oilseeds grading designation used to describe unusual quality characteristics. Some of these include infested grain, smutty wheat, treated wheat, waxy corn, and garlicky wheat. Special grades can be combined with numerical grades.
Special grant(s): Also known as “pork” grants, these grants are championed by a member of Congress to address specific research, extension, or teaching needs and are made outside the competitive grants process. Such grants are not typically peer-reviewed. Special grants are authorized by the Competitive, Special, and Facilities Research Grant Act. See Grant(s), and Special research grant(s).
Special grazing lease(s): See Special grazing permit(s) or grazing lease(s).
Special grazing permit(s) or grazing lease(s): Authorizes grazing use by privately owned or controlled indigenous animals. This use must be consistent with multiple-use objectives. The term of these permits or leases shall not exceed ten years.
Special import quota: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1207(b)(6)), a quantity of imports that is not subject to the over-quota tariff rate of a tariff-rate quota. For cotton through July 31, 2008, whenever the USDA determines that, for any consecutive four-week period, the lowest U.S. growth quote for middling 1-3/32 inch cotton, c.i.f. Northern Europe, as adjusted by the value of the Step 2 payment rate in effect, exceeds the Northern Europe price by more than 1.25 cents per pound, a special import quota is established equal to one week’s consumption of upland cotton by domestic mills at the seasonally adjusted average rate of the most recent three months for which data are available. Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1207(b)(1)(E)), the use of the 1.25 cents threshold is suspended until July 31, 2006. Under Sec. 1207(b)(4), although special import quota periods may overlap, a special import quota cannot be established if alimited global import quota is already in effect. Also Step 3 (cotton).
Special mention: For Farm Credit System institutions, loan assets that are currently protected but are potentially weak and constitute an undue and unwarranted credit risk. See Asset (quality) classification(s).
Special Milk Program (SMP): A program to encourage children to drink milk by reimbursing participating schools and institutions, not otherwise participating in a federally subsidized meal service program, for part of the cost of all milk served.
Special quota: See Special import quota.
Special research grant(s): Also known as earmarked grants. Grants made to state agricultural experiment stations, colleges and universities, as well as other research institutions, federal agencies, and individuals to conduct research on promising breakthroughs in food and agricultural science. Such grants are intended to meet immediate or emerging research needs and are not to exceed five years in length. See Grant(s), and Special grant(s).
Special Supplemental Food Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC): See Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program.
Specialties: Commodities not generally considered to be mainstream.
Specialty (high-value) crops: (1) Crops with a limited number of producers and limited demand (niche markets) or those with high per-acre production costs and value. Examples include most fruit and vegetable crops, ornamentals, greenhouse crops, spices, salad greens, and low-volume crops such as artichokes, peppermint, horseradish, culinary herbs, and watercress. (2) Under provisions of the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2000(Sec. 803), peanuts and tobacco were considered specialty crops for purposes of market and disaster loss payments. (3) Under the Technical Assistance for Specialty Crops Program, all cultivated plants produced in the U.S. except wheat,feed grains, oilseeds, cotton, rice, peanuts, sugar, and tobacco. (4) Under the Emergency Agricultural Assistance Act of 2001 (Sec. 7), any agricultural crop except wheat, feed grains, oilseeds, cotton, rice, peanuts, and tobacco.
Specialty sugar: Brown slab sugar (also known as slab sugar candy), pearl sugar (also known as perl sugar, perle sugar, and nibs sugar), vanilla sugar, rock candy, demerara sugar, dragees for cooking and baking, fondant (a creamy blend of sugar andglucose), ti light sugar (99.2 percent sugar with the residual comprised of the artificial sweeteners aspartame and acesulfame K), caster sugar, golden syrup, ferdiana granella grossa, golden granulated sugar, muscovado, molasses sugar, sugar decorations, sugar cubes, and other sugars, as determined by the U.S. Trade Representative, that would be considered specialty sugar products within the normal commerce of the U.S. Organic sugar is considered a specialty sugar.
Specialty vegetables: Products that include jicama, dasheen, and cassava. These may also include “minor vegetables” such as okra, chile peppers, pumpkins, and tropical vegetables. Some may also be classified as unique crops.
Species: A group of similar individuals different from other similar arrays of individuals. The main characteristic is reproductive isolation.
Specific Cooperative Agreement: An agreement between the USDA and another party with mutuality of interests and contributions that will directly benefit USDA in-house research. The cooperation is jointly planned and executed.
Specific tariff: A customs duty assessed as a stated monetary amount per unit of physical quantity as so many cents a pound, bushel, or yard, regardless of the value of the imported item.
Specified peril(s) insurance: See Named peril(s) insurance.
Specified risk material(s)(SRM): Those tissues or portions of an animal carcass likely to contain an infectious agent in an infected animal. The USDA has declared as specified risk materials skull, brain, trigeminal ganglia, eyes, vertebral column, spinal cord, and dorsal root ganglia of cattle over 30 months of age and the tonsils and small intestine of cattle of all ages, thus prohibiting their use in the human food supply.
Speculative bubble: A rapid, but usually short-lived, run-up in prices caused by excessive buying that is unrelated to any of the basic, underlying factors affecting the supply or demand for the commodity. Speculative bubbles are usually associated with a “bandwagon” effect in which speculators rush to buy the commodity (in the case of futures, “to take positions“) before the price trend ends, and an even greater rush to sell the commodity (unwind positions) when prices reverse.
Speculator(s): In commodity futures, an individual who does not hedge but who trades with the objective of achieving profits through the successful anticipation of price movements. Philosophically speaking, a unhedged producer is a speculator since the product of his work is unpriced. Such a producer has capital, labor, and all other input resources committed to the production of crops or livestock but is speculating that the price of the commodity will exceed input costs on actual sale day.
Spelt: An ancient grain of Near Eastern or European origin. Production of spelt in the U.S. declined rapidly due to lower yields in comparison to wheat, and because of the need to mechanically dehull the grain before milling. Spelt is hardy and can be grown without significant inputs of fertilizers and pesticides and can be grown even in climates with low precipitation and difficult winters. Spelt is easier for humans to digest than wheat. Spelt is available mostly through organic health food outlets as whole grain, white flours, and processed products.
Spent hen: A breeder or commercial-type egg hen that no longer performs at desired production levels.
Spinning: The process of drawing and twisting fibers together to produce thread or yarn. See Air-jet spinning, Ring spinning, Rotor spinning, Woolen spinning system, and Worsted spinning system.
Split application: Breaking up the application of fertilizer into two or more applications throughout the growing season. Split applications are intended to supply nutrients more evenly and at times when the crop can most effectively use them.
Split operation: An operation that produces or handles both organic and nonorganic agricultural products.
Splits (soybeans): Soybeans with more than one-quarter of the bean removed and not damaged.
Sport fish: Farm-raised fish for sport or game fishing. Sport fish include largemouth bass, bluegill, crappie, sunfish, muskie, northern pike, and smallmouth bass.
Spot: (1) A bacterial disease that appears as spots on fruit, leaves, and stems. These spots can expand, leaving holes caused by the dropping of dead tissue. In the case of fruit, these holes or cracks allow for the introduction of rot, fungi, and bacteria. Common spots are leaf spot, black spot, and fruit spot. (2) Also Spot commodity, and Spot market.
Spot commodity: (1) The actual commodity as distinguished from a futures contract. (2) A cash commodity available for immediate delivery. See Actuals, and Cash commodity(ies).
Spot market: A cash market price for a physical commodity that is available for immediate delivery.
Spot price: The cash price for a physical commodity for immediate delivery.
Spotted wilted virus: See Tomato spotted wilt virus.
Spray drift: See Pesticide drift.
Spray irrigation: A common irrigation method where water is shot from high-pressure sprayers onto crops. Because water is shot high into the air onto crops, some water is lost to evaporation.
Sprayfield: Land onto which liquid waste from a nearby lagoon is applied.
Spread: (1) The price difference between two related markets or commodities. (2) A market position that is simultaneously long (bought) and short (sold), with equivalent amounts of the same or related commodities.
Spreader dike(s): A method of irrigation that allows for the capture and spreading of floodwater. Such dikes also control erosion through the capture of silt.
Spring wheat: Wheat that is sown in the spring and is harvested in the summer or fall. Spring wheat grows continuously until maturity.
Sprinkler irrigation: A planned irrigation system in which water is applied by means of perforated pipes or nozzles operated under pressure so as to form a spray pattern.
SPS: Agreement on the Application of Sanitary and Phytosanitary Measures
Square: The flower bud of cotton.
Squeeze chute: A specialized, adjustable chute used for restraining cattle when performing procedures. A squeeze chute allows cattle to be securely restrained during the procedure and then easily and quickly released when the procedure is finished.
SRA: Standard Reinsurance Agreement
SRDC: State Rural Development Councils
SRF: State Water Pollution Control Revolving Fund
SRIC: Short rotation intensive culture
SRM: Specified risk material
SRWC: Short rotation woody crop
SSF: Site-specific farming
SSRS: Senior Scientific Research Service
Stabilization Corporation; Stabilization: Cooperative marketing associations that administer the tobacco price-support program under agreement with the Commodity Credit Corporation. See Price stabilization cooperative.
Stabilization inventory(ies): Tobacco is accepted into the inventory of a Stabilization Corporation if such tobacco fails to bring an auction price of at least one cent per pound more than the support price established for that grade.
Stable-to-table: Agriculture and food system that includes (a) primary production (planting and growing, breeding, rearing, and fattening), (b) harvest, herding, or gathering, ( c) transportation of raw products, (d) slaughtering and processing, (e) transportation of processed products, (f) retailing to restaurants, catering services, and food stores, and (g) use by consumers.
Stakeholder(s): Any organization, company, governmental entity, or individual that has a stake in or may be impacted by a given policy, program, approach, or conduct of agricultural research, extension, education, regulation, or practice.
Stale seedbeds: Used when alternative weed control practices are limited or unavailable. The goal is to prepare a seedbed two to three weeks before planting to achieve maximum weed seed germination near the soil surface. Producers then plant the crop with minimum soil disturbance to discourage new weed seed being exposed to favorable germinating conditions. Just before or after planting but before crop emergence, producers treat the field by flaming or with herbicides to kill all germinated or exposed weeds.
Stalk cutting: Harvesting of domestic tobaccos by cutting the stems of the plant near the ground. See Priming.
Stalk rot: A generic term for a whole variety of fungi and mold diseases. Stalk rot causes stalks to become so weakened that they easily fall over from wind, rain, or snow, making the plants much more difficult to harvest.
Stallion: An uncastrated male horse that is over four years of age.
Stanchion barn: See Barn (stanchion).
Stand: (1) In silviculture, a tree community that possesses sufficient uniformity in composition, constitution, age, spatial arrangement, or condition to be distinguishable from adjacent communities. This tree community forms a silvicultural or management entity. Both natural and artificially regenerated crops are included, and there is no connotation of a particular age. (2) In the U.S., growth of trees on a minimum of one acre of forest land that is at least 16.7 percent stocked by forest trees of any size.
Stand(s): (1) In silviculture, a tree community that possesses sufficient uniformity in composition, constitution, age, spatial arrangement, or condition to be distinguishable from adjacent communities. This tree community forms a silvicultural or management entity. Both natural and artificially regenerated crops are included, and there is no connotation of a particular age. (2) In the U.S., growth of trees on a minimum of one acre of forest land that is at least 16.7 percent stocked by forest trees of any size.
Standard density (SD) (cotton): A cotton bale density of at least 23 pounds per cubic foot but less than 28 pounds per cubic foot.
Standard pig: A pig sold within its target market-weight range at a price that is not substantially discounted from the base price.
Standard Reinsurance Agreement (SRA): An agreement between the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation and reinsured companies that establishes the terms and conditions under which the FCIC will provide subsidy and reinsurance on eligible crop insurance contracts sold orreinsured by an insurance company.
Standard(s): Technical specifications that lay down characteristics of a product such as size, quality, purity, cleanliness, soundness, performance, or safety. Standards may also cover terminology, testing methods, packaging, labeling, or marking requirements.
Standard(s) (FDA): The Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act of 1938 (Sec. 401) requires that whenever such action will promote honesty and fair dealing in the interest of consumers, regulations shall be promulgated by the Food and Drug Administration fixing and establishing for any food, under its common or usual name so far as practicable, a reasonable definition and standard of identity, a reasonable standard of quality, and reasonable fill-of-container standards. However, no definition and standard of identity or standard of quality may be established for fresh or dried fruits, fresh or dried vegetables, or butter, except that definitions and standards of identity may be established for avocados, cantaloupes, citrus fruits, and melons.FDA standards are based on the assumption that the food is properly prepared from clean, sound materials.
Standard(s) of identity: Defines a given food product, its name, and the ingredients that must be or may be used in the manufacture of the food. See Standard(s) (FDA).
Standard(s) of quality: Minimum standards only that establish specifications for quality requirements. See Standard(s) (FDA).
Standardized Fat-Free Lean Index: An improved way to measure the lean composition in market hogs resulting in producers receiving more accurate compensation. The lean index provides producers a way to compare their hogs with industry averages and standards under a new equation to determine the lean-yield percentage. The index provides a figure on the percent of lean similar to the Fat-Free Lean Index. The new equation is more accurate because it takes into account current genetics and slaughter weights.
Standardized premises registration system: Under the NAIS, Stocking densityan APHIS web-based premises registration system available to all states and tribes. States and tribes may use alternate systems as long as the USDA finds these systems to be compliant with national data standards and other technical requirements.
Staple: Term used to designate fiber length in cotton, wool, or flax.
Staple length (wool): (1) The length of sheared locks obtained by measuring the natural staple without stretching or disturbing the crimp. (2) The fiber regrowth or regeneration from one shearing to the next.
Starch(es): A molecule composed of long chains of glucose molecules. Many plants store the energy produced in the photosynthesis process in the form of starch.
Starter fertilizer(s): Fertilizer placed in close proximity to the seed, usually at planting. Also Pop-up fertilizer(s).
State agricultural experiment station(s) (SAES): Created by the Hatch Act of 1887 for the purpose of assuring that agriculture acquired a position in research equal to that of industry, with the goal of providing basic and applied research to solve the problems and challenges of agriculture and rural life. The 57 state agricultural experiment stations conduct 70 percent of the food, agricultural, and natural resource research in the U.S. The agricultural experiment stations were established in connection with the state land grant universities to carry out research of local, regional, and national importance in the areas of food, agriculture, and natural resources. Also Agricultural experiment station(s) (AES).
State and Private Forestry: The Forest Service cooperates with state and local governments, forest industries, other private landowners, and forest users in the management, protection, and development of forest land in nonfederal ownership. State and Private Forestryworks through regional offices and a special Northeastern Area office to link forestry and conservation and promote the stewardship of forests on federal, state, tribal, community, and private lands.
State Beginning Farmer and Rancher Guarantee Program: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 5004), the Farm Service Agency may guarantee loans made under state beginning farmer and rancher loan programs that use small-issue agricultural bonds.
State cooperative institution(s); state cooperative agency(ies): State partners that work cooperatively with the USDA through an agreement to perform mutually beneficial agricultural research, extension, and teaching activities, including statistical reporting.
State mark of inspection: See Marking.
State mediation grants: Under the authority of the Agricultural Credit Act of 1987 (Sec. 502) (7 U.S.C. §§ 5106 et seq.) and expanded by the Department of Agriculture Reorganization Act of 1994. Mediation programs allow for the resolution of agricultural credit issues without resort to legal recourse, administrative appeals, or bankruptcy. Such issues include both loan making and loan servicing, or agricultural credit issues and one or more of the following: wetland determinations, conservation compliance, pesticides, rural water loans, grazing, and other disputes. Grants are made to states whose mediation programs have been certified by the Farm Service Agency. The Grain Standards and Warehouse Improvement Act of 2000 (Sec. 306)authorized appropriations through FY2005. See Certified mediation program.
State Rural Development Councils (SRDC): Components of the National Rural Development Partnership that bring together key rural players in their states to address critical community concerns and to respond to fast-breaking opportunities. State Councils are responsible for creating their own mission, structure, operating guidelines, and action plan. Each Council hires a senior-level executive director who works with the Council leadership. There are currently 37 SRDCs, with four more expected to be established soon.
State trading: The practice of conducting trade exclusively through a government agency. Centrally planned economy countries follow this practice for all products, while many other nations, particularly developing countries, use state trading for commodities of critical economic importance such as grains.
State trading enterprise (STE): An enterprise that is (a) a public monopoly that has the exclusive right to market a product plus the ability to transfer resources from public sources to a preferred beneficiary, (b) a parastatal monopoly that does not have access to public funds, (c) a market promotion agency that can impose assessments or access public financing to promote particular commodities, or (d) an entity, empowered to enforce certain product standards, that otherwise would be considered anti-competitive.
State Water Pollution Control Revolving Fund (SRF): A program authorized by the Water Quality Act of 1987, replacing the Construction Grants program, to provide low-cost financing for water quality protection projects for wastewater treatment, nonpoint source pollution control, and watershed and estuary management in each state and Puerto Rico. The SFR program is capitalized through federal grants and state matching funds equal to 20% of the federal grant. Funds are loaned to communities and loan repayments are recycled back into the program to fund additional authorized projects. Also Clean Water State Revolving Fund (CWSRF).
State/Federal Partnership: A common term to describe specific federal and state statutes which provide for the close collaboration of the land grant system with the units of the USDA CSREES in the administration of key programs supported by federal funds at land grant institutions.
Statewides: Organizations that represent the interests of the Rural Electric Cooperatives in the respective states in various activities and programs. A Board of Trustees/Directors, typically composed of representatives of each of the member distribution cooperatives, controls the activities of the statewides. See Rural Electric Cooperative(s) (REC).
Status date: Under payment limitation regulations, the date by which the status of a program participant, such as the legal existence of a corporation or the age of an individual, is determined for the current year, usually April 1.
STC: State Committee (FSA, USDA)
STE: State trading enterprise
Steagall Amendment of 1941 (P.L. 77-144): Signed into law July 1, 1941. The law required support for many nonbasic commodities at 85 percent of parity or higher. In 1942, the minimum rate was increased to 90 percent of parity and was required to be continued for two years after the end of World War II. The “Steagall commodities” included hogs, eggs, chickens (with certain exceptions), turkeys, milk, butterfat, certain dry peas, certain dry edible beans, soybeans, flaxseed, and peanuts for oil, American-Egyptian (extra-long staple) cotton, potatoes, and sweet potatoes.
Steam pasteurization: A technology that uses heat to control or reduce harmful microorganisms in beef. This system passes freshly slaughtered beef carcasses that are already inspected, washed, and trimmed, through a chamber that exposes the beef to pressurized steam for approximately 6 to 8 seconds. The steam raises the surface temperature of the carcasses to 190° to 200° F. The carcasses are then cooled with a cold-water spray. See Pasteurization; pasteurizing; pasteurized.
Steep(ing); steep extraction: During wet milling of corn, the softening of the kernel in tanks with warm water thereby releasing starch.
Steepwater: Water containing soluble materials extracted by steep extraction through soaking in water or other liquid. Steepwater is drawn off during the milling process and used in animal feed and to support fermentation of other products. See Wet mill(ed)(ing).
Steer(s): A male bovine castrated before the development of secondary sex characteristics for better cattle management and improved meat quality.
Steer-corn ratio: The number of bushels of corn that are equal (in value) to one hundred pounds of cattle; that is, the price of cattle per hundredweight divided by the price of corn per bushel. A favorable (high) ratio is usually followed by an increase in cattle production; an unfavorable (low) ratio, by a decrease. See Hog-corn ratio.
Stemmed; stemming: Tobacco that has had the stems removed from the leaves.
Step 1 (cotton): See Adjusted world price (cotton), Northern Europe; Northern Europe price (NE), Step 1 adjustment (cotton), and U.S. Northern Europe (USNE).
Step 1 adjustment (cotton): The adjustment to the adjusted world price made when the five-day average of the lowest U.S. growth quote for middling 1-3/32 inch cotton, c.i.f. U.S. Northern Europe (USNE) exceeds the Northern Europe price and the AWP is within 115 percent of the loan level. The USDA may lower the AWP by up to the difference between the USNE price and the Northern Europe price. See Adjusted world price (cotton).
Step 2 (cotton): See Upland Cotton Marketing Certificate Program.
Step 3 (cotton): See Special import quota.
Stewardship Incentive Program (SIP): Provided cost-share assistance to nonindustrial private forest land owners to help them develop and implement a broad range of forest enhancement and protection activities. The SIP was replaced by the Forest Land Enhancement Program in the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002.
Stewart B. McKinney Homeless Assistance Act (P.L. 100-77): Signed into law July 22, 1987. The law provided housing, food assistance, and job training for the homeless.
Stock requirement: A method of capitalizing lending institutions such as the cooperative Farm Credit System. The borrower is required to purchase stock in the lending association to obtain a loan. The stock requirement generally is specified as a percentage of theloan or as a dollar amount. The stock requirement may be as low as two percent of the value of the loan or a maximum of $1,000. The purchase of stock is a financial investment in the issuing institution that is typically paid back at loan maturity but the lender is not obligated to do so.
Stock(s): See Buffer stock(s), Carryover, Commodity(ies), Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC), Free stock(s), Livestock, and Total stocks.
Stocker cattle; stockers: Cattle from the time of weaning until placed in a feedlot. The typical age of stocker cattle is seven months and the typical weight is 400-600 pounds. Before cattle can be placed in a feedlot they need to weigh 700 pounds, be weaned for a month or more, and be grouped with one hundred or more cattle of the same sex, age, and size. The stocker industry is important for cattle coming from small herds that have been marketed through sale barns. Stocker cattle are typically grazed on forages.
Stocker fish; stockers: (1) Fish that are large enough to be placed in the final grow-out pond, net pen, or tank. (2) For channel catfish, fish held for a year (yearlings) until they reach food fish size (approximately 12 inches in length).
Stocking density: The relationship between the number of animals, birds, or fish and the specific unit of land being grazed, facility size, or pond/tank size at any point in time. Appropriate stocking density (a) allows adequate access to food, water, light, air, and/or space for movement; (b) minimizes aggressive behavior, stress, and spread of disease; and (c) allows for sustainable grazing land and/or acceptable water quality. See Density and Stocking rate(s).
Stocking rate(s): (1) The degree of utilization of land by trees, measured in terms of the number of trees in a stand compared to the number of trees required to fully utilize the growth potential of the land. (2) The maximum number of animals that can graze a quantity of land (traditionally an acre) over a period of time without affecting the sustainability of the available forage. (3) The amount of space (volume of water) allocated to aquacultural species for a specific time period. Proper stocking rates influences fish performance, feed utilization, water quality, and waste production. Also Carrying capacity, Grazing capacity, and Stocking density.
Stocking up: The accumulation of fluid in the lower legs. Typically, it develops when a horse is standing still for several hours as in a stall. Also Edema.
Stockpiling: The removal of animals from pastures for forage regrowth so that the pastures can provide adequate forage later in the grazing season (typically late fall, winter, or the following spring).
Stocks-to-use (ratio): For any given marketing year, the ending stocks of a commodity divided by the total use. The ratio is a measure of the total inventory of ending stocks in relation to the total use of the product. For purposes of making an Acreage Reduction Program decision, the USDA used a moving average of ending stocks so that unusual circumstances in any one year will not skew the calculations.
Stockyard: Under provisions of the Packers and Stockyards Act, 1921, any place, establishment, or facility commonly known as a stockyard that is conducted, operated, or managed for profit or nonprofit as a public market for livestock producers, feeders, market agencies, and buyers, consisting of pens, or other inclosures, and their appurtenances, in which live cattle, sheep, swine, horses, mules, or goats are received, held, or kept for sale or shipment in commerce.
Stockyard services: Under provisions of the Packers and Stockyards Act, 1921, services or facilities furnished at a stockyard in connection with the receiving, buying or selling on a commission basis or otherwise, marketing, feeding, watering, holding, delivery, shipment, weighing, or handling in commerce of livestock.
Stones: In grain inspection, concreted earthy or mineral matter and other substances of similar hardness that do not disintegrate in water.
Stop charge: A milk payment deduction that represents a per-pickup hauling charge.
Stop order: In commodity futures trading, a standing market order to put a speculator or hedger out of an existing futures market position if a predetermined price level is touched.
Stop-limit order: In commodity futures trading, a variation of a stop order in which a trade must be executed at the exact price or better. If the order cannot be executed, it is held until the stated price or better is reached again. See Stop order.
Storable commodity(ies) (CCC): For purposes of the price-support program, a commodity that may be stored for substantial periods of time, in normal trade practice and that can be stored without excessive loss through deterioration or spoilage, or without excessive storage costs, for such periods as will permit its disposition without substantial impairment of the effectiveness of the price-support program.
Storable manufactured dairy products: Manufactured dairy products, including butter, nonfat dry milk, and hard cheeses, that can be stored for relatively long periods of time. See Dairy products (eligible), Manufactured milk products, and Manufacturing (grade) milk; manufactured dairy product(s).
Storage agreement(s): Agreements entered into by the Commodity Credit Corporation with individuals or companies to allow warehouse operators to store commodities owned by the CCC or pledged as security to the CCC for marketing assistance loans.
Storage charges; storage costs: All fees, costs, and expenses incurred in receiving, insuring, carrying, handling, cleaning, storing, conditioning, drying, blending, and marketing of a raw agricultural commodity in warehouse storage. See Warehouse(s).
Storage payment(s): (1) See Uniform Grain and Rice Storage Agreement (UGRSA). (2) The payment a producer received from the government when a commodity was placed in the former farmer-owned reserve. The commodity must have been held in storage facilities approved by the USDA, either on the farm or in commercial storage facilities.
Storage; store(s)(ing)(ed): The phase of the post-harvest system during which the products are kept in such a way as to guarantee food security while preserving the quality and quantity of the stored products over time. Storage (a) permits deferred use of products harvested, (b) ensures the availability of seeds for future crop cycles, (c) guarantees regular and continuous supplies of raw materials for the processing industry, and (d) stabilizes markets through balancing supply and demand of agricultural products.
Strategic alliance(s): A joint venture among two or more businesses that cooperate in search of a common strategic goal. Typically, the businesses offer complimentary but dissimilar services. The alliance often entails the sharing of assets, clients, and technologies in order to better position each company in the market and obtain a competitive advantage.
Strategic farmland: Farmland that has been defined both by its importance and its vulnerability to development. Some of the criteria that can be used to define strategic farmland include (a) agricultural characteristics or those characteristics that make the land strategic from a food production standpoint; (b) environmental characteristics or those characteristics that make it strategic from the standpoint of protecting environmental quality and amenities valued by the public; and (c) economic characteristics or those characteristics of farmland that are responsible for its contribution to the economy.
Strategic grain reserve: National grain stocks held in reserve intentionally by government programs for the purposes of meeting future domestic and international needs, as in the USDA Food Security Wheat Reserve.
Stratification: The chilling of seeds to improve germination.
Straw walker: The mechanism that imparts a fluffing, pitching motion to the material other than grain before it “walks” out of the rear of the combine.
Streamside management zone (SMZ): Buffer strips immediately adjacent to water bodies where timber management activities are designed to protect water quality. SMZs slow and spread water flow, serve as filters that reduce movement of sediment and nutrients into water bodies, stabilize stream banks, minimize logging debris from reaching water bodies, and act as buffer strips separating water bodies from areas that receive silvicultural chemicals. See Buffer zone.
Strength: The force required to break a fiber, a mass of fibers, or a yarn, expressed as centinewtons per tex (cN/tex). In the past the term “tenacity” was frequently used.
Stress: (1) Any environmental condition to which the plant is exposed that negatively influences the growth of the plant. Specific stresses include too much water (root anoxia), too little water (osmotic stress), cold temperatures (chilling injury), and insect damage. Redundant terms such as physiological stress and environmental stress are frequently used. (2) The inability of an animal to adapt completely to stressors resulting in destructive behavior, impaired health, and susceptibility to disease. Stress can affect meat quality, milk production, and weight gain.
Strike price: In commodity options and futures trading, the price at which the underlying futures contract for a call or put option can be purchased (call option) or sold (put option). See Call option, Put option, and Underlying futures contract.
Strip cropping: A method of contour farming in conjunction with crop rotations that results in alternating strips of crops across the slopes of fields. When practiced with conservation tillage, strip cropping is an important and highly effective erosion control method.
Strip cutting: A type of clear-cut harvesting where a long, narrow strip of trees is felled along the contour of the land to reduce soil erosion. After regeneration of the area cut, another strip is harvested above the first, and so on. This procedure reduces the damage done to the environment and helps quickly regenerate the trees on cut sites.
Strip grazing: Confining animals to an area of grazing land to be grazed in a relatively short period of time, where the paddock size is varied to allow access to a specific land area.
Strip-till(age): The practice of preplant tillage that leaves most of the soil undisturbed except for a narrow seedbed strip (two- to four-inches wide) prepared on ridges with sweeps or row cleaners. Weeds are generally controlled with herbicides and cultivation.
Stripper cotton; stripper system; stripper harvester: Cotton, primarily in some areas of Texas and Oklahoma, gathered by stripper harvesters that pluck the entire boll from the cotton plant rather than picking the fiber from the boll. The stripper system chops the plant and uses air to separate the trash from the cotton. The stripper system is used for shorter-length cotton.
Struck bushel: See Heaped bushel, and Winchester bushel.
Structural change: Trends in the principal elements of an economic system, including its patterns of production, consumption, trade, and relative prices.
Structural practice(s): (1) A conservation practice that primarily involves the establishment, construction, or installation of a site-specific measure to conserve, protect from degradation, or improve soil, water, or related natural resources in the most cost-effective manner. (2) Under the Environmental Quality Incentives Program, the establishment on eligible land of a site-specific animal waste management facility, terrace, grassed waterway, contour grass strip, filter strip, tailwater pit, permanent wildlife habitat, constructed wetland, or other structural practice needed to protect water, soil, or related resources from degradation; and the capping of abandoned wells.
Structure of agriculture: The broad notion that pertains to the organization, performance, and social implications of the food and fiber system. The make-up of the food and agricultural sector is traditionally described in terms of numbers and sizes of farm types, sizes ofagribusiness firms and industries, farmland tenure and ownership, farm organization, labor patterns, and operator households, as well as other features that determine the control of agricultural assets and management decisions. Recently, the term has included the linkages of the above with research and development, farm input manufacturing, on-farm production and reproduction, food processing, storage and distribution, marketing, retailing, preparation, consumption, and disposal. The term was first coined in the 1970s, primarily by social scientists, and heralded the publication of A Time to Choose: A Report on the Structure of Agriculture by the USDA in 1980.
Stub (soca) cotton: The cotton stalks of a previous crop that begin to show signs of growing by displaying buds that swell or send out shoots of plant growth.
Stubble mulch: A protective cover provided by leaving plant residues of any previous crop as a mulch on the soil surface when preparing for the following crop.
Stud book: See Breed registry.
Student experiential learning: An initiative to further the development of student scientific and professional competencies through experiential learning programs that provide students with opportunities to solve complex problems in the context of real-world situations.
Stumpage: The value of timber as it stands uncut in the woods.
Stunt(ing): Arrested plant development caused by drought, chemicals, disease, or pests.
Style: In wool, the combination of crimp and crinkle ranging from good crimp and good crinkle to no crimp and no crinkle.
Subirrigation: Applying irrigation water below the ground surface, either by raising the water table within or near the root zone, or by using a buried perforated or porous pipe system that discharges directly into the root zone.
Submitted-sample inspection service: A grain inspection service that allows producers and grain handlers to draw their own samples and submit them to the nearest official agency. See Official sample-lot inspection service.
Subscription farming: The guaranteed, direct marketing of farm products to consumer-members. Producers typically contract directly with customers who have agreed in advance to buy a minimum amount of produce at a fixed price, but who have little or no investment in the farm itself. Unlike community-supported agriculture, subscription farming has an economic rather than a philosophic underpinning.
Subsidy(ies); subsidize(s)(d); subsidizing: (1) A direct or indirect benefit granted by a government for the production or distribution (including export) of a good. Examples include any national tax rebate on exports; financial assistance on preferential terms; financial assistance for operating losses; assumption of costs of production, processing, or distribution; a differential export tax or duty exemption; domestic consumption import quota; or other methods of ensuring the availability of raw materials at artificially low prices. Subsidies are usually granted to many people and firms under many different programs for activities considered to be in the public interest. The World Trade Organization recognizes three types of subsidies: (a) prohibited subsidies that are contingent upon export performance, (b) actionable subsidies that cause adverse effects to other members, and (c) nonactionable subsidies. (2) A crop insurance or livestock revenue insurance benefit for the administrative and operating expenses paid by the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation on behalf of the insured producer to the reinsured company.
Subsistence farm: A low-income farm where the emphasis is on production for use of the farm operator and the operator’s family rather than for sale.
Subsoil: The underlying layer immediately beneath Horizon A; Horizon B. It is the soil layer that accumulates the particles and products that have leached from Horizon A.
Substandard pig: A pig sold out of its target market weight range or substantially discounted from the price received for other pigs in its contemporary group.
Substantial beneficial interest (SBI): (1) For payment limitation purposes, any individual that owns 10 percent or more of a farming entity that is receiving payments. (2) For crop insurance purposes, livestock risk protection insurance, not less than 10 percent of all beneficial interests in the policyholder. See Minimal beneficial interest(s).
Substantial evidence: Evidence that a reasonable person would accept as supporting a conclusion, even after considering other evidence that might take away from that conclusion. This is a standard of proof that is less than preponderance of evidence. Substantial evidence is the standard that claimants in Pigford v. Veneman Track A must use to prove their claims.
Subterminal elevator(s): An elevator, located in the production area, that receives grain from country elevators as well as from producers; an intermediate-sized grain assembly point often having facilities for official weights and grades.
Subtherapeutic: Preventative treatment rather than treatment for actual injury.
Succession cropping: The planting of different crops in immediate succession in order to maximize production on a given piece of ground.
Successor-in-interest: One who acquires control of land through purchase, inheritance, foreclosure, or other legitimate means, and who subsequently agrees to continue all or part of an original contract that limited how the land may be utilized.
Sucrose: A type of sugar composed of glucose and fructose.
Sudden Death Syndrome (SDS) (soybeans): Caused by a strain of the fungus known as Fusarium solani. The name is somewhat misleading since the disease may take up to 14 days to fully develop. However, symptoms may not be readily apparent until the disease is well advanced and plants have actually begun to defoliate. The time from defoliation to death is short.
Suffocants: Pesticides, usually containing oils, that kill by coating the bodies of arthropods, preventing gas exchange and respiration.
Sugar (marketing) allotment(s): Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1403), the allocation of sugar for marketing by processors for purposes of (a)inventory management (supply control), (b) balancing markets, (c) avoiding loan forfeitures, and (d) complying with sugar import requirements under the World Trade Organization and the North America Free Trade Agreement,. The allotment for sugar derived from sugarbeets is established by multiplying the overall allotment quantity for the crop year by 54.35 percent. The allotment of sugar derived from sugarcane is established by multiplying the overall allotment quantity by 45.65 percent. Sugarbeet processor allocations are based on their sugar production history. Sugarcane processor allocations are based on past marketing, ability to market, and past processing totals. The sugarcane allotment is further allotted among offshore states and mainland states.
Sugar (price-support) program: As first authorized by the Agricultural Act of 1949, the program provides loans to processors of domestically grown sugarcane and sugarbeets. Loans are available to processors who agree to pay producers 18 cents per pound for raw cane sugar and 22.9 cents per pound for refined beet sugar. Previously, loans were recourse unless the tariff-rate quota for sugar exceeded 1.5 million short tons, at which time all loans were to be nonrecourse loans. This provision was repealed by the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2001, and nonrecourse loans were reauthorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002. The USDA helps to support U.S. sugar markets by restricting sugar imports. Marketing allotments were suspended by the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996, but reauthorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002. In addition, theFarm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 terminated marketing assessments, made in-process sugar eligible for loans, instituted a “no-cost” provision, granted the Commodity Credit Corporation authority to establish a pre-plant payment-in-kind program for sugarbeet and sugarcane processors, eliminated the required charge to loan recipients of an interest rate that is 1 percentage point above the CCC’s cost of borrowing, capped the minimum payment requirement for sugarbeet growers, and eliminated the forfeiture penalty.
Sugar Association, The: An industry group founded in 1943 to promote the benefits of sugar as a wholesome food, support sound basic research and applied research, and to communicate the nutritional and functional uses of sugar to consumers, professionals, and the media.
Sugar degree(s): The measurement of sucrose in a sugar sample. Sugar of 98 degrees would contain 98 percent sucrose.
Sugar for the Production of Polyhydric Alcohol Program: See Polyhydric Alcohol Program.
Sugar marketing assessment(s): Originally mandated for the marketing of raw cane sugar and beet sugar until 2003, the first processors were required to remit to the Commodity Credit Corporation a nonrefundable marketing assessment at the rate of 0.2475 cents per pound forraw cane sugar and 0.3376 cents per pound for beet sugar. Sugar forfeited to the CCC under a loan default was still subject to the assessment. The sugar marketing assessments were suspended for 2000 and 2001 by the Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies Act, 2000, and deemed to have been repealed effective October 1, 2001, with passage of the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1401).
Sugar policy: U.S. sugar policy is implemented through a system of domestic price-supports (nonrecourse loans to processors and flexible marketing allotments) and import restrictions (tariff-rate quota system). In addition, there are three quota-exemptprograms for sugar: the Refined Sugar Re-export Program, Sugar-Containing Products Re-export Program, and Polyhydric Alcohol Program.
Sugar Re-Export Program: See Refined Sugar Re-export Program.
Sugar Storage Facility Loan: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1402), the Commodity Credit Corporation provides financing for processors of domestically produced sugarcane and sugarbeets to construct or upgrade storage and handlingfacilities for raw sugar and refined sugar. The CCC has set the loan term for up to 15 years at rates comparable to commercial rates.
Sugar syrup: A viscous, concentrated direct-consumption sugar solution with a sucrose or sucrose-equivalent invert sugar content of less than 94 percent of the total soluble solids.
Sugar-containing product (SCP): Any product, other than those products normally marketed by cane sugar refiners, that is produced from refined sugar or to which refined sugar has been added as an ingredient.
Sugar-Containing Products Re-Export Program: Allows U.S. participants to buy world-priced sugar from any refiner participant for use in products that will be exported onto the world market. Imports are not subject to the sugar tariff-rate quotas. See Polyhydric Alcohol Program, and Refined Sugar Re-export Program.
Sugarbeet processor: Any person who commercially produces sugar directly or indirectly from sugarbeets (including sugar produced from sugarbeet molasses).
Summer fallow: The leaving of land without a crop every other year; practiced usually in semi-arid regions in order to preserve soil moisture.
Summer Food Service Program (SFSP): A program that provides meal service when school is not in session to children from areas where poor economic conditions exist. Sponsors may be private or nonprofit schools, other public entities, sites serving homeless children, nonprofit residential summer camps, or private nonprofit organizations offering qualified special summer programs.
Sun Grant Initiative: A USDA-funded national network of land grant universities and U.S. Department of Energy laboratories partnering to enhance national energy security, promote sustainability of U.S. agriculture, and improve economic diversification in rural communities through the development, distribution, and implementation of biobased energy technologies. Research is aimed at creating viable biobased alternatives for fuel, electrical power, lubricants, plastics, solvents, adhesives, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and building materials.
Sun oil: The preferred term for sunflowerseed oil.
Sun-cured tobacco: Tobacco that is cured on racks in the sunshine for set daily periods over four weeks, depending on the weather. It looks similar to air-cured tobacco. See Curing.
Sunflower(s); sunflowerseed: A large yellow-flowered, coarse-stemmed plant that produces edible seeds rich in oil that can be used for cooking. The advent of program flexibility, coupled with a short growing season and drought tolerance for sunflowers and an expandingcrushing industry for sunflowerseed, have led to a rapid expansion of sunflower production.
Sunflowerseed and Cottonseed Oil Assistance Programs: Two programs, authorized by the Disaster Assistance Act of 1988, under which the Commodity Credit Corporation provided bonuses to exporters to assist in expanding exports to targeted markets. Funds for the programs were first provided in the Rural Development, Agriculture, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act for FY1988 (P.L. 100-202) under Section 32 funding. The CCC awarded bonuses in vegetable oil or cash to exporters to facilitate exports to targeted markets. Neitherprogram was reauthorized in the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996; however, report language accompanying the FY97 agricultural appropriations bill expressed expectations that the USDA would utilize Environmental Easement Program funds to accomplish the same purposes using the same criteria and procedures of the former Cottonseed Oil Assistance Program and the Sunflowerseed Oil Assistance Program.
Sunflowerseed Oil Assistance Program (SOAP): See Sunflowerseed and Cottonseed Oil Assistance Programs.
Super 301: A provision of the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988 that requires the U.S. Trade Representative, in a report to Congress, to name specific countries engaging in unfair trade practices that, if eliminated, would have a significant positive impact on U.S. exports. Within 21 days after filing such a report, the USTR is required to initiate a Section 301 investigation for each offense. In 1996, there were no listings because of the active enforcement of trade agreements and the prevention of future adoptions of unfair trade barriers. See Special 301.
Super CREP: As authorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 2003), the Natural Resources Conservation Service can enter in stewardship agreements with states, local agencies, Indian tribes, and nongovernmental organizations to utilize practices and authorities from a blend of various USDA conservation programs. Special incentives may be provided to participants to encourage enrollment of certain land. See Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP).
Super dairy(ies): A loose term typically meaning very large dairy operations of 5,000 or more cows.
Super-pool premium: See Over-order premium.
Superfund: The Environmental Protection Agency program that funds and carries out EPA solid waste emergency and long-term removal and remedial activities. These activities include investigating sites, determining their priority, and conducting or supervising the cleanup and other remedial actions.
Supervised credit: On Farm Service Agency direct loans, the FSA works with each borrower to identify specific strengths and weaknesses in farm production and management, then works with the borrower on alternatives and other options to address the weaknesses and achieve success. The FSA requires all borrowers to complete farm and financial training courses unless waived. The FSA requires borrowers to provide updated financial information periodically and participate in an annual review of their operation. The FSA completes a comprehensive evaluation of the real estate and chattel property used in the operation, the farm business organization and key personnel, and any planned changes to the operation. The FSA will then identify and prioritize training and supervisory needs, and help the borrower complete a plan of supervision to assist the producer in achieving financial viability and upgrade their farming and homemaking skills.
Supplement (feed): A feed or feed mixture used to improve the nutritional value of base feeds. Supplements are usually rich in protein, minerals, vitamins, antibiotics, or a combination of all or part of these; they are usually combined with base feeds to produce a complete feed.
Supplemental: See Supplemental appropriation(s).
Supplemental AMTA: Also Second AMTA (payment). See Marketing loss (assistance) payments.
Supplemental appropriation(s): Additional appropriations provided during the current fiscal year for specific, unforeseen activities. See Continuing resolution.
Supplemental Appropriations Act, 2001 (P.L. 107-20): Title II of the Act provided additional funds to the USDA for natural disaster recovery activities, enforcement of the Animal Welfare Act, and conservation programs. Further, appropriated funds to the Farm Service Agency for the Agricultural Conservation Program were rescinded, specified food stamp program amounts were reduced, and specified food stamp employment and training amounts were rescinded. See Klamath Basin Water Conservation Program.
Supplemental Appropriations Act, FY1999: See Emergency Supplemental Appropriations Act, FY1999.
Supplemental crops: See Alternative crops.
Supplemental Income Assistance Program (SIAP): A proposed program that would have compensated producers for current low prices based on actual production, not on past production as with Agricultural Market Transition Act (AMTA) payments. SIAP would have made payments to grain, cotton, and oilseed producers if projected gross income for the crop fell below 92 percent of the preceding five-year average. Gross income would include gross market revenues plus government payments. Payments to individual producers would be based on current production. Annual SIAP payments would be capped at $30,000 per person. Furthermore, SIAP payments would be adjusted downward to zero as AMTA payments reach and exceed $30,000.
Supplemental Income Payment Program: A proposed system of supplemental income payments for producers of crops eligible for marketing assistance loans: wheat, feed grains, cotton, rice, and oilseeds. The payments would be made whenever the current year’s national gross revenue for a crop falls below 95 percent of its previous five-year average. A per-acre payment rate would be calculated, based on the difference between 95 percent of that five-year average and the current year’s revenue per acre. This calculation would be used to set a per-unit payment for each producer’s harvested production. The proposal also calls for those farms with weather-reduced yields to receive the same level of assistance as other participants.
Supplemental irrigation: Irrigation to ensure increased crop production in areas where rainfall normally supplies most of the moisture needed.
Supplemental loan (sugar): Loans made under the sugar program mature at the end of nine months or at the end of the fiscal year. Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 1401(d)(2)), if a loan is made in the last three months of the fiscal year, the sugar can be repledged as collateral for a second loan in the subsequent fiscal year, and the second loan will mature in nine months less the time the sugar was under the original loan. The loan rate will be the rate in effect at the time of making the second loan.
Supplemental water: The additional water from sources other than natural sources.
Supplementary imports: Farm products, shipped into this country, that add to the output of U.S. agriculture. Examples include cattle, meat, fruit, vegetables, and tobacco. See Complementary imports.
Supplementary payments (cotton): A payment, similar to a deficiency payment, that was made to producers of extra-long staple cotton.
Supplier Credit Guarantee Program (SCGP): Under this component of the GSM-102 program, the CCC guarantees a portion of payments due from importers through short-term financing that exporters have extended directly to the importers for the purchase of U.S. consumer-oriented and high-value agricultural commodities and products. These direct credits must be secured by promissory notes signed by the importers. The CCC does not provide financing, but guarantees payment due from the importer. A substantially smaller portion of the value of exports (currently 65 percent) is guaranteed under the SCGP than under the GSM-102, where the CCC is guaranteeing foreign bank obligations. Previously, the terms of the short-term financing could be up to six months. The Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 3102) extended the term authority up to 360 days, however the extension beyond 180 days is dependent upon the availability of appropriated funds to cover the additional cost. SeeExport Credit Guarantee Programs (GSM-102 and GSM-103).
Supplier Credit Program: See Supplier Credit Guarantee Program (SCGP).
Supply control: The policy of changing the amount of acreage permitted to be planted to a commodity, or the quantity of a commodityallowed to be sold by a program participant. Supply control is used to maintain a desired carryover or price level. See Mandatory supply controls, Acreage reduction program(s) (ARP), and Set-aside(s).
Supply management: A term used to describe a policy in which government programs are used to influence and control the supply of a commodity to maintain a desired price.
Supply plant (milk): A plant approved to handle Grade A milk that receives such milk directly from dairy producers and (a) transfers or diverts fluid milk products to other plants, or (b) manufacturers dairy products on its premises.
Support loan(s): See Price-support program(s).
Support practice (factor) (P): Reflects the impact of support practices on the average annual erosion rate. It is the ratio of soil loss, with contouring or strip-cropping, to that with straight row farming up-and-down slope. As with the other factors, the P differentiates between cropland and rangeland or permanent pasture. Both options allow for terracing or contouring, but the cropland option contains a strip-cropping routine, whereas the rangeland or permanent pasture option contains an “other mechanical disturbance” routine. See Revised Universal Soil Loss Equation (RUSLE), and Universal Soil Loss Equation (USLE).
Support price: A legislated price for a particular commodity, maintained through a variety of mechanisms such as minimum import prices. In the U.S., support-price mechanisms include nonrecourse loans and marketing orders.
Support program(s): See Mu, and Income support program(s).
Surface irrigation: Irrigation where the soil surface is used as a conduit, as in furrow and border irrigation, as opposed to sprinkler irrigation or sub-irrigation.
Surface runoff: Water from a catchment area that is discharged or lost without entering the soil. See Agricultural runoff.
Surface storage: Rainfall or pumped groundwater that is stored on the soil surface and does not enter the soil.
Surplus area(s): The areas where a small percentage of the milk produced is used as Class I (fluid) milk.
Surplus(es): (1) Production in excess of domestic and foreign demand. (2) In dairy and specifically in the dairy price-support program, the difference between commercial milk supplies and the amount demanded by the market at a given price. Commodity Credit Corporation net removals (price-support direct purchases, plus Dairy Export Incentive Program shipments, less domestic sales for unrestricted use) approximate the surplus during a particular period. (3) For cooperatives, the accumulated earnings of a cooperative. See Unallocated surplus (earnings).
Surveillance and detection: In biodefense, the early warning, detection, or recognition of biological weapons attacks to permit a timely response to mitigate their consequences. At best, surveillance and detection can allow for deterrence and attribution (the identification of the perpetrator as well as the method of attack).
Suspension: An action taken that immediately excludes a person from participating in covered transactions for a temporary period, pending completion of an investigation and possible debarment.
Suspension (pesticide): Under the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act, the Environmental Protection Agency may seek cancellation of a pesticide registration. If the EPA determines that an “imminent hazard” is posed by continued use during the time required for cancellation, the agency may immediately suspend the pesticide registration. The test for imminent hazard is whether there is an unreasonable adverse effect on the environment.
Sustainable (sustained) yield: The highest rate at which a renewable resource can be harvested in perpetuity without reducing its available supply locally, regionally, or globally.
Sustainable agriculture: (1) An integrated system of plant and animal production practices having a site-specific application that will, over the long-term, satisfy food and fiber needs, enhance environmental quality and natural resources, make the most efficient use of nonrenewable resources and on-farm resources, integrate natural biological cycles and controls, sustain the economic viability of farm operations, and enhance the quality of life. (2) See Sustainable Agriculture Technology Development and Transfer program.
Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program (SARE): Authorized by the National Agricultural Research, Extension, and Teaching Policy Act Amendments of 1985 (Secs. 1461-1471). A Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service program to increase knowledge about, and help farmers and ranchers adopt, practices that are economically viable, environmentally sound, and socially responsible. To advance such knowledge nationwide, SARE administers a competitive grants program first funded by Congress in 1988. Regional administrative councils, located in the northeast, south, north central, and west, recommend projects to be funded. The regional councils are composed of producers, farm consultants, university researchers and administrators,Extension personnel, state and federal government agency staff, and representatives from nonprofit organizations. The regional councils also provide policy direction and identify information needs for the SARE Program. The SARE Program is the successor to the Low-Input Sustainable Agriculture competitive grants program.
Sustainable Agriculture Technology Development and Transfer program: A Smith-Lever 3(d) program authorized by the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (Sec. 1628). The program provides for the education and training of county Extension agents and other professionals within the university system or government agencies who themselves will provide education or technical information about sustainable agriculture to their clientele. See Smith-Lever 3(d) (funds), and Sustainable agriculture.
Sustainable farming practice(s): A system or process for producing an agricultural commodity recognized by the Natural Resources Conservation Service as likely to conserve or enhance natural resources and the environment.
Sustainable forestry: The use of best management practices that sustain biodiversity, provide long-term site productivity, protect wildlife and fisheries habitats, and insure water quality. Sustainable forestry is the fostering of an integrated approach to resource management.
Sustainable Forestry Outreach Initiative: Authorized by the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 8101) as an amendment to the Renewable Resources Extension Act of 1978. A Cooperative State Research, Education, and Extension Service initiative to educate landowners about the value and benefits of practicing sustainable forestry, the importance of professional forestry assistance, and the array of public and private resources available to assist them.
Sustainable grazing systems: The managing of the plant community on grazing land through appropriate conservation practices so as to conserve, enhance, or sustain the soil, water, air, plant, and animal resources while also meeting landowner and manager grazing objectives.
Sustainable; sustainability: Balancing the amount of consumption and use that can be continued without degrading the resource so that both will flourish into perpetuity.
Swampbuster: A provision of the Food Security Act of 1985 (Title XII, Subtitle C, Secs. 1221-1223) (16 U.S.C. §§ 3821 et seq.) as amended by the Food, Agriculture, Conservation, and Trade Act of 1990 (Sec. 1421), the Federal Agriculture Improvement and Reform Act of 1996 (Sec. 321), and the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 2002). It discourages the conversion of natural wetlands to cropland use; producers converting a wetland area to cropland lose eligibility for several USDA program benefits. The exceptions include (a) conversions on wetlands that began before December 23, 1985; (b) land that is a nontidal drainage or irrigation ditch excavated upland; (c) conversions of wetlands created artificially; (d) crop productionwetlands that became dry through drought that can be farmed as a normal practice without destroying wetland characteristics; (e) wet areas caused by all forms of irrigation and water delivery; (f) voluntarily reverted wetlands, if originally converted before December 23, 1985, (with restrictions); (g) a wetland created temporarily and incidentally by adjacent development; and (h) conversions that the Natural Resources Conservation Service has determined have minimal effects on wetland values. A good faith exemption is also provided. See Converted wetland(s), Farmed wetland(s), Good faith exemption, Minimal effect(s), and Prior conversion; prior converted.
Swampbuster bills: Legislation that places restrictions on the draining of natural wetlands for crop production if producers are to be eligible for program benefits.
SWANCC: Solid Waste Agency of Northern Cook County v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers
Sward: A population of herbaceous plants characterized by a relatively short habit of growth and relatively continuous ground cover including both above- and below-ground parts.
Swathed: The severance of the stem and grain head from the ground, without removal of the grain or kernels from the plant, and the subsequent placing in a windrow.
SWCA: Soil and Water Conservation Assistance
SWCD: Soil and Water Conservation District
Sweet corn: The corn variety most likely to be grown for corn-on-the-cob, canned corn, or frozen corn. The most prevalent corn variety grown in the U.S., however, is dent.
Sweet rice: An opaque, glutinous, niche-market, short-grain rice that cooks into a dense sticky mass; favored in Southeast Asia. Also Glutinous rice, and Waxy rice.
Swine breeds: In the U.S., breeds include the Berkshire, Chester White, Duroc, Hampshire, Hereford, Landrace, Large Black, Poland China, Red Wattle, Saddleback, Spotted, Tamworth, and Yorkshire.
Swine contractor: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 10502), any person engaged in the business of obtaining swine under a swine production contract for the purpose of slaughtering the swine or selling the swine for slaughter, if the swine is obtained by the person in commerce or the swine (including products from the swine) obtained by the person is sold or shipped in commerce.
Swine market formula purchase: See Swine or pork market formula purchase.
Swine or pork market formula purchase: A purchase of swine by a packer in which the pricing mechanism is a formula price based on a market for swine, pork, or a pork product, other than a future or option for swine, pork, or a pork product.
Swine production contract: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 10502), any grow-out contract or other arrangement under which a swine production contract grower raises and cares for the swine in accordance with the instructions of another person. See Swine production contract grower.
Swine production contract grower: Under the Farm Security and Rural Investment Act of 2002 (Sec. 10502), any person engaged in the business of raising and caring for swine in accordance with the instructions of another person. See Swine production contract.
Swine vesicular disease: A highly contagious viral disease of swine, with symptoms similar to foot-and-mouth disease. Swine vesicular disease can be transmitted to humans from infected hogs. Trade in infected animals and meat products is restricted.
Switchgrass: A hardy, warm-season, drought-resistant tall prairie grass. Switchgrass is grazed by all kinds of animals and many producers grow switchgrass as forage for livestock, in wildlife areas, or as a ground cover to control erosion. Due to its hardiness and rapid growth, switchgrass is considered a good candidate as a feedstock for biofuel production.
SY: Scientist year
Symbiosis: The intimate relationship of two different organisms living together. The relationship can be mutually beneficial (mutualistic), parasitic, or neutral (commensal). The interaction is between the larger organism (host) and a smaller organism (symbiont).
Synthesis gas; syngas: Product of gasification of biomass, consisting primarily of carbon monoxide, hydrogen, carbon dioxide, and nitrogen (if air is used during gasification instead of oxygen).
Synthetic pyrethroids: Synthetic chemical insecticides that act in a similar manner to pyrethrins, which are derived from chrysanthemum flowers. Pyrethroids are widely used for controlling various insects. Also Pyrethroids.
System: (1) See Farm Credit System (FCS). (2) See Cooperative Extension System (CES). (3) See Land grant system. (4) See National Forest System. (5) See Farming system.
System of minimum prices (dairy): See Minimum pricing (dairy).
Systemic: Internally spreading throughout the entire plant structure.
Systemic herbicide: A chemical absorbed into the plant parts to inhibit growth. It is toxic to particular plants only and designed to affect pest plants or weeds.
Systems research: Under the Agricultural Research, Extension, and Education Reform Act of 1998 (Sec. 403(a)(5)), an integrated, coordinated, and iterative investigative process that involves (a) the multiple interacting components and aspects of precision agriculture systems, including synthesis of new knowledge regarding the physical-chemical-biological processes and complex interactions of the systems with cropping, livestock production practices, and natural resource systems; (b) precision agriculture technologies development and implementation; (c) data and information collection and interpretation; (d) production-scale planning; (e) production-scale implementation; and (f) farm production efficiencies, productivity, and profitability.