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Agriculture News

SARL VP's farm wins 2018 Grower Achievement Award

Growing Produce | Posted on September 20, 2018

Autryville, NC-based Jackson Farming Company is the 2018 winner of American Vegetable Grower's prestigious Grower Achievement Award. First generation growers Brent and Debbie Jackson and their son Rodney Jackson demonstrate what can be accomplished when you’re willing to aim for long-term success.The Jackson Family will receive the American Vegetable Grower Grower Achievement Award in Washington, D.C., on September 24, 2018, during the United Fresh Produce Association’s Washington Conference. United Fresh partners with American Vegetable Grower in selecting and celebrating the Grower Achievement Award winner. The Jackson’s achievements over the past 37 years impressed the judges. Many in the industry think only multi-generation operations can reach the heights Jackson Farming Company has reached. The parents-and-son team of Brent and Debbie Jackson, along with second-generation grower Rodney, show their blend of risk-taking and a long-term focus on sustainability can let you reach great heights.” Senator Brent Jackson serves as SARL's 2nd Vice President.

SARL member Manitoba Minister Ralph Eichler signs MOU with Indiana

Cass Network | Posted on September 20, 2018

Lt. Governor Suzanne Crouch, Indiana State Department of Agriculture Director Bruce Kettler and members of the Indiana agricultural delegation met with officials from Canada’s Manitoba Province today to discuss opportunities to grow both regions’ agricultural sectors. Through a signed memorandum of understanding, the Indiana and Manitoba departments of agriculture agreed to facilitate cooperation in several areas including agricultural research and development, youth education and leadership, and trade investment – all for the purpose of mutual economic growth. The agricultural sector has been a key driver of trade and economic growth in both Manitoba and Indiana. Through the MOU, the two regions will encourage stronger partnerships between researchers, innovation leaders, businesses, and young farmers, and will share information and best practices to help each jurisdiction make the most of new opportunities to drive growth and innovation in agriculture and related sectors.“Indiana and Manitoba share common priorities and strengths in the agricultural sector that provide excellent opportunities for more collaboration and information sharing,” said Ralph Eichler, Manitoba’s Minister of Agriculture.

FAPRI Update: U.S. Net Farm Income Projected to Decline

Illinois Farm Policy News | Posted on September 20, 2018

FAPRI indicated that, “Large crops and trade disputes put downward pressure on U.S. farm commodity prices and farm income. Even considering the initial round of market facilitation program (MFP) payments, U.S. net farm income is projected to decline slightly in 2018 and again in 2019.” For background, the baseline update explained that, “The farm income projections incorporate the initial round of MFP payments, announced on August 27, 2018, that provide compensation for losses incurred because of trade disputes. We assume $4.0 billion in MFP payments will be made in calendar year 2018 and another $0.7 billion in 2019. No additional MFP payments are assumed, even though it is possible that a second round will be announced later this year.“Two important caveats: First, these estimates do not reflect any commodity market developments since August 2018, such as changes in the estimated size of the 2018 crop. Second, while MFP payments are included in these farm income estimates, they were not considered in the commodity market projections which were prepared before the payments were announced. In future baseline projections, we will consider possible com- modity supply and price effects of MFP payments.” After analyzing these variables, the FAPRI update noted that, “Net farm income declines by $3 billion in 2018, as the effect of higher production costs more than offsets the increases in cash receipts and payments.”

Rising US-China trade tensions 'couldn't come at a worse time': Iowa agriculture secretary

CNBC | Posted on September 20, 2018

The ratcheting of the U.S.-China trade war is unfortunate and comes at a lousy time for farmers, according to Iowa Agriculture Commissioner Mike Naig. The state official said farmers in Iowa are in the harvest season for key crops such as soybeans and corn, which are among the farm commodities already hit by China's tit-for-tat tariffs.Beijing struck back against the Trump administration's new round of trade tariffs by imposing duties on $60 billion of American products, including cocoa powder and frozen vegetables.

Bankers Expect 7.8 Percent Decline in Farm Equipment Sales Next 12 Months

Creighton University Economic Outlook | Posted on September 20, 2018

 For a seventh straight month the overall index rose above growth neutral. Bankers reported a decline in the sale of agriculture equipment and expect sales to decline by another 7.8 percent over the next 12 months.   More than one-half of bankers supported cutting recently enacted tariffs.  In reaction to weak farm commodity prices and income, almost one-third of bank CEOs reported rejecting a higher percentage of farm loans. 

2019 Crop Budgets Suggest Dismal Corn and Soybean Returns

Farm Doc Daily | Posted on September 20, 2018

Due to lower soybean prices and higher costs, budgets suggest returns will be very low for corn and soybeans in 2019.  Conserving cash, cutting investments, reducing costs, and renegotiating cash rents should be aggressively pursued.  If prices do not increase, the budgets indicate it is unlikely that farmers will be able to generate profits on rented farmland in 2019.

The Profit Problem of American Agriculture: What We Have Learned with the Perspective of Time

Choices magazine | Posted on September 20, 2018

The problem of poor profits in American agriculture is not new or a secret, but it is not well known to most Americans, including most policy makers, even though the problem threatens an entire sector of our national economy. As such, the problem should be understood by policy makers at all levels of American government. Yet after more than 80 years of government policy interventions in agriculture, the problem remains: Farm income for 2018 is forecast to fall to its lowest real-dollar level in nearly two decades (USDA, 20018c). This failure indicates there must be a fundamental flaw in policy makers’ understanding of the profit problem. Therefore, this article i) presents a summary of research findings that outlines the problem and ii) offers guidelines to policy makers and agricultural industry participants who, as a team, may hold the only workable solutions to this old problem.

After 'major escalation' in US-China trade war, what happens next?

CNN | Posted on September 20, 2018

The trade war between the United States and China just got a lot bigger after both sides announced their broadest waves of tariffs yet.The latest exchange of fire means the two economic superpowers will soon have imposed tariffs on more than $360 billion of goods. And analysts say the battle is likely to get worse, even as China starts to run low on ways to retaliate.The new tariffs announced by Washington and Beijing this week "mark a major escalation of their conflict that will hit global economic growth," Louis Kuijs, head of Asia Economics at research firm Oxford Economics, said in a note.The Chinese government said late Tuesday that it would impose tariffs on US goods worth $60 billion following the Trump administration's announcement that it was hitting $200 billion worth of Chinese goods with new tariffs.The US tariffs start at a rate of 10%, before rising to 25% at the end of the year. They come into effect on September 24, and will apply to thousands of Chinese products, ranging from food seasonings and baseball gloves to network routers and industrial machinery parts.China's new tariffs will be levied at rates of 5% or 10%, depending on the product, from the same date, the Chinese government said.More than 5,000 US goods will be affected, including meat, nuts, alcoholic drinks, chemicals, clothes, machinery, furniture and auto parts.


No federal aid coming for livestock producers: Canadian agriculture minister

ipolitics | Posted on September 20, 2018

No financial aid package is in the works for Canada’s livestock sector, Agriculture Minister Lawrence MacAulay says — despite pleas from producer groups who warn plummeting prices are forcing producers out of business. “I’m willing to look at anything through the government, but with anything like this, you’d have to work with the government here, and the provincial governments, if there was going to be a special package put in place,” MacAulay said in an interview with iPolitics Monday afternoon.“But honestly, I am not looking at putting one in place at the moment,” he said, adding the federal government is “doing everything we can with the programs in place in order to help them.”As a former farmer himself, MacAulay said it’s well understood the sector “is looking for aid.”The Alberta government had asked the Trudeau government to consider supporting the province’s hog industry amid economic instability in North American commodity markets caused by an ongoing trade war.

Florence update: Animal deaths expected to top Hurricane Matthew toll

Meatingplace (free registration required) | Posted on September 20, 2018

Hurricane Florence apparently has caused more livestock losses than Hurricane Matthew two years ago, as state officials and processing companies continue to assess the damage to operations and farms. The North Carolina Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services is estimating preliminary livestock losses – from the storm making landfall and subsequent flooding – at 3.4 million poultry and 5,500 hogs. Officials at the agency called Florence “an unprecedented storm” that affected the top six agricultural counties in the state. Florence covered the same areas hit by Matthew in 2016.