Agriculture's Big Picture
AgWeb Editor Greg Vincent takes a big-picture look at agriculture and current events.
Want a Job? Go Ag; European Subsidies under Attack
Jun 03, 2010
Stocks made a comeback overnight.
The Nikkei closed 3.24% higher in Japan. The FTSE is up 1.73% so far today.
The markets are making gains today on the belief the U.S. economy is recovering at a faster rate than many people have believed, says a Bloomberg report. Factory orders were up in May, and job losses were relatively lower.
Oh, to Be Young…and Hireable
A recent survey by Rabobank shows the positive outlook farmers have about their profession may be slipping a little
, but it’s a booming business for college grads. And it looks like it will be for some time. A report released last week by Purdue University
indicates that 54,000 jobs will be created each year through 2015. At the same time, there will be only 53,000 students a year graduating with agriculture-related degrees. I’m no math major, but that sounds like pretty good odds of placement when this fall’s freshman class of aggie students starts to graduate in 2014.
Nice CAPEuropean farm subsidies are coming under heavy scrutiny as countries across the continent are going broke. With 40% of the European Union’s budget going to agriculture programs, it will be difficult to argue the point. However, the EU’s group of agriculture ministers have vowed to fight any movement to cut into the Common Agriculture Program commonly called CAP.
Ukraine Exports Are Up. I Think.
While I was also not an English major, I certainly wasn’t a broken English major. But from what I’m getting from the Emirates News Agency, it looks like Ukraine’s agricultural exports are also on the increase. The article does get a bit difficult to follow since it’s been badly translated from Arabic, but it appears the country has exceeded its current marketing year (July 2009-June 2010) expectations in 10.5 months.
Dust Doesn’t Scare Farm NosesA farm upbringing is nothing to sneeze at. Seriously, it’s not. Swedish researchers have proven that children who spend their time on a farm up to age 5 are 20% less likely to develop adulthood allergies. Sounds interesting, but maybe farm kids are just tougher?
What’s the Size of Your Carbon Footprint?Is it OK to ask a guy the size of his carbon footprint? Well, now you won’t have to ask because a carbon accounting tool developed at Tennessee’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) can calculate it for virtually any agriculture point in the nation, according to a news release from the laboratory. The system will take ground-level estimates for carbon readings and then test them with atmospheric conditions to get more accurate readings.
From the release: The research effort also provides estimates of net ecosystem carbon balance, which includes all carbon sources and sinks associated with crop production in a defined area.
“This means that upstream emissions from fertilizer production, for example, are accounted for in the same place where the crop is produced,” said Tristram West of ORNL's Environmental Sciences Division. “This method allows for an estimate of the total impact of changing cropland management on net CO2 emissions.”