Sep 18, 2014
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THIS WEEK ON U.S. FARM REPORT

EPISODE # 2118

MARCH 15-16, 2014   

 

JOHN’S OPEN:

HELLO AND WELCOME TO U-S FARM REPORT, I'M JOHN PHIPPS. PERHAPS YOU HAVE A NEIGHBOR LIKE THIS. HE IS A VERY GOOD FARMER AND A SURPRISINGLY GOOD NEIGHBOR. HE HAS BEEN SUCCESSFUL BY VIRTUE OF HARD WORK AND GOOD DECISION, BUT ALSO BENEFITS FROM A FAMILY OPERATION THAT GAVE HIM A SECURE START. YOU LIKE AND ADMIRE HIM. BUT...HIS MARKETING PLAN ABSOLUTLEY DRIVES YOU CRAZY. HE IS STRICTLY A CASH MARKETER AND ALMOST NEVER SELLS UNTIL IT'S IN THE BIN. WHILE YOU ARE FLAILING HE WAITS. AND WAITS. AND THIS DO-NOTHING MARKETING PLAN, WHICH IS ROUNDLY DISCOUNTED BY EXPERTS HAS WORKED BRILLIANTLY FOR SEVERAL YEARS. I AGREE WITH OUR MARKET GURUS, BUT SUCCESS IS HARD TO ARGUE WITH.

HEADLINES:

IT WASN'T A VERY FAVORABLE WEEK FOR SOYBEAN PRICES. IT ALL STARTED MONDAY WITH THE USDA WORLD SUPPLY AND DEMAND REPORT. THE MARCH REPORT IS TYPICALLY A NON-MARKET MOVER. BUT THIS ONE CAUGHT MANY ANALYSTS OFF GUARD. ALLENDALE INCORPORATED RELEASED THE RESULTS OF ITS ANNUAL PLANTING INTENTIONS SURVEY. THE FIRM EXPECTS U-S FARMERS WILL PLANT THREE MILLION FEWER CORN ACRES THAN LAST YEAR. SOYBEAN ACREAGE WILL JUMP BY SIX MILLION. AND ON WHEAT - ALLENDALE SEES AN 800-THOUSAND ACRE DECLINE. ALLENDALE'S BILL BIEDERMANN WILL BE IN THE MARKETING DISCUSSION IN JUST A FEW MINUTES. WITH THE CURRENT BATTLE OVER BIG DATA, THE FORMATION OF A NEW GROUP CALLED "THE OPEN AGRICULTURE DATA ALLIANCE" WAS ANNOUNCED THIS WEEK. THE U-S COULD BE ON THE VERGE OF A BIG OIL BOOM.
NEW DEPOSIT DISCOVERIES AND THE USE OF FRACKING HAS THE U.S. ON PACE TO OVERTAKE SAUDI ARABIA AS THE WORLDS TOP OIL PRODUCER. THE CHANGE COULD HAVE BIG IMPACTS ON THINGS LIKE FOREIGN POLICY AND ETHANOL ECONOMICS.

CROP WATCH:

CROP WATCH THIS WEEK

ROUNDTABLE:

AL IS JOINED BY BILL BIEDERMANN AND MIKE FLOREZ FOR THIS WEEK'S MARKET WRAP.

JOHN’S WORLD:

LAST MONTH HOUSE WAYS AND MEANS CHAIRMAN DAVID CAMP UNVEILED A LONG AWAITED AND INTENSELY NEGOTIATED TAX REFORM PLAN. THE RESPONSE FROM HIS COLLEAGUES IN THE HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES COULD ACCURATELY BE DESCRIBED MUTED. YOU COULD HEAR CRICKETS CHIRPING. BUT I TAKE MY HAT OFF TO WHAT LOOKS TO ME LIKE A STRENUOUS AND SERIOUS EFFORT TO FINALLY COME TO GRIPS WITH A OVERLY COMPLICATED AND BLATANTLY UNFAIR FEDERAL TAX LABYRYNTH. THE HEADLINES WERE ABOUT THE PLAN'S GOAL TO REDUCE THE TAX BRACKETS TO JUST 2: 10 AND 25%. BUT THE DETAILS WERE WHERE THE FIREWORKS CAN BE FOUND. IN ORDER TO PAY FOR THE REDUCTION IN TAX RATES, REPRESENTATIVE CAMP LEFT FEW SACRED COWS UNSLAUGHTERED, INCLUDING SEVERAL DEAR TO FARMERS. FORGET SPECIAL BONUS DEPRECIATION, ALTHOUGH SECTION 179 IS RETAINED. KISS INCOME AVERAGING GOODBYE, ALONG WITH BIODIESEL AND CELLULOSIC CREDITS. BID FAREWELL TO ACCELERATED DEPRECIATION, AND BRACE FOR LONG DEPRECIATION LIVES. FORGET TAX FREE 1031 EXCHANGES. AND - I MUST BE READING THIS WRONG - FERTILIZER WOULD NO LONGER BE A DEDUCTIBLE EXPENSE.  CAMP'S EFFORT SHOULD BRING A SENSE OF REALITY TO FOLKS WHO THINK SIMPLIFYING OUR BLOATED TAX CODE WILL BE STRAIGHTFORWARD OR PAINLESS. AND WHILE HIS PLAN WAS BARELY ACKNOWLEDGED BY REPUBLICAN LEADERS LIKE PAUL RYAN WHO HAS BEEN TOUTING IT AS PART OF HIS PLAN TO REMAKE GOVERNMENT, I FOR ONE SALUTE THIS COURAGEOUS AND EMMENENTLY REASONABLE FIRST STEP.

2ND HALF

JOHN’S OPEN:

HELLO AND WELCOME TO U-S FARM REPORT, I'M JOHN PHIPPS. BIG TRADE AGREEMENTS ARE HARD TO NEGOTIATE UNDER THE BEST OF CIRCUMSTANCES, BUT IT LOOKS LIKE EFFORTS TO EXPAND COMMERCE BOTH EAST AND WEST COULD HIT STIFF POLITICAL HEADWINDS. CONGRESS AND THE ADMINISTRATION ARE STRUGGLING TO FIND A BALANCE BETWEEN AUTHOERITY TO NEGOTIATE AND RIGHT TO APPROVE. TRADE AGREEMENTS ARE PRETTY DULL BATTLES, BUT THESE NEW ONES REALLY MATTER TO AG. WE ARE BETTING THE FARM ON EXPORTS FOR ABOUT EVERY SECTOR BUT CERTAINLY FOR PROTEINS AND GRAINS. AGRICULTURE CANNOT AFFORD TO RELY ON DOMESTIC DEMAND ALONE FOR FUTURE PROSPERITY, SO MAYBE WE'RE NEED TO TO EXERT SOME DUE DILIGENCE AND GET MORE INVOLVED.

HEADLINES:

HOG FUTURES HAVE BEEN ON A RUN. THE JUNE CONTRACT TRADED OVER 126 DOLLARS THIS WEEK. AND IT'S CONCERNS ABOUT P-E-D-V THAT ARE FUELING THE PRICE RUN. WHILE MANY OF US DON'T NEED A REMINDER OF HOW COLD AND BRUTAL IT'S BEEN THIS WINTER, THERE IS A BRIGHT SPOT TO IT ALL.  ACCORDING TO THE U-S FOREST SERVICE, IN MINNESOTA ALONE, THE WEATHER MAY HAVE FATALLY FROZEN 80 PERCENT OF ASH BORERS.  CORN ROOTWORM EGGS COULD ALSO FREEZE IF THEY WERE CLOSE ENOUGH TO THE SURFACE THIS WINTER. AND MANY GARDENERS ARE EXCITED BECAUSE THE COLD WEATHER MAY HAVE WIPED OUT MANY JAPANESE BEETLE POPULATIONS. A NEW U-S-D-A REPORT SHOWS ORANGE PRODUCTION HAS TAKEN ANOTHER HIT...WITH OVERALL PRODUCTION NOW ESTIMATED TO BE DOWN 12 PERCENT FROM A YEAR AGO. LOOKING AT THE MAJOR PRODUCTION STATES, CALIFORNIA'S FORECAST ACTUALLY INCREASED FROM THE LAST REPORT. THE PROBLEM REGION IS FLORIDA - THE NAVAL ORANGE CROP THERE IS DOWN 21 PERCENT FROM LAST SEASON. MUCH OF THE REDUCTION IS DUE TO CITRUS GREENING - A DISEASE SPREAD BY TINY INSECTS. AND THE STATE OF VIRGINIA STOOD UP FOR AGRICULTURE THIS WEEK, SPECIFICALLY THE AGRI-TOURISM SECTOR.  THE GOVERNOR SIGNED A BILL INTO LAW THAT FOCUSES ON INCREASING ECONOMIC OPPORTUNITIES AND DECREASING REGULATIONS ON FAMILY FARMERS. THE LAW, WHICH TAKES EFFECT JULY FIRST, INCREASES CONSUMER ACCESS TO LOCALLY PRODUCED FOODS. IT ALSO SAYS LOCAL GOVERNMENT CAN'T PROHIBIT AGRI-TOURISM ACTIVITIES UNLESS THERE'S A SUBSTANTIAL IMPACT ON PUBLIC HEALTH.

FFA CHAPTER:

MANY OF YOU HAVE SEEN WHAT FFA CHAPTERS BRING TO LOCAL COMMUNITIES. WHAT STARTED AS A FARMING ORGANIZATION HAS SPREAD INTO URBAN AREAS. OUR OWN TYNE MORGAN INTORDUCES US TO ONE CHAPTER THAT RIVALS MANY COLLEGE CAMPUSES. AND THE BEST PART? VERY FEW OF THESE STUDENTS GREW UP AROUND AGRICULTURE.

BAXTER BLACK:

IF YOU HAVE ANIMALS, MORE THAN LIKELY, YOUR VET IS ON SPEED DIAL. FOR BAXTER BLACK, HE PREFERS TO ROPE A VET. LET'S LET BAXTER EXPLAIN.

TRACTOR TALES:

AL, WHAT ANTIQUE TRACTOR IS ON TAP THIS WEEK?  WELL, JOHN, WE HAVEN'T BEEN TO BIG SKY COUNTRY LATELY.

CHURCH SALUTE:

TODAY'S COUNTRY CHURCH SALUTE GOES TO THE TRINITY LUTHERN CHURCH IN HOWARDS GROVE, WISCONSIN. IN 160 YEARS, THE CHURCH HAS ONLY HAD A DOZEN PASTORS. AND THE CURRENT PASTOR HAS BEEN THERE SINCE 1979. WITH 600 CONGREGATION MEMBERS, THE CONSISTENCY HAS HELPED BIND EVERYONE TOGETHER OVER THE YEARS. The CHURCH INCLUDES A PRESCHOOL THAT MEETS FOUR DAYS A WEEK, HELPING BRING NEW LIFE TO THEIR CHURCH COMMUNITY EACH YEAR. OUR THANKS TO TONI POST FOR SHARING THEIR STORY.

MAILBAG:

TIME NOW FOR OUR WEEKLY LOOK INSIDE THE FARM REPORT MAILBAG. "LOOK AT THE OLD PICTURES OF YOUR MOM AND DAD. CAN YOU SEE WHAT GLUTEN IS DOING TO US?" THAT'S FROM MARK VALLEY. THANKS FOR WRITING. THE CONCERNS OVER GLUTEN ARISE FROM THE GROWING AWARENESS OF CELIAC DISEASE. CELIAC DISEASE IS A RELATIVELY RARE CONDITION OF AUTOIMMUNE RESPONSE TO THE NATURAL GLUTEN IN CEREAL GRAINS. GLUTEN IS WHAT MAKES BREAD DOUGH ELASTIC AND ENABLES IT TO RISE. CELIAC OCCURANCE IS THOUGHT TO BE ABOUT ONE IN A THOUSAND BUT COULD BE AS HIGH AS ONE IN A HUNDRED. GLUTEN SENSITIVITY PREVALENCE IS HARDER TO MEASURE AS MOST CASES ARE SELF-DIAGNOSED. THERE ARE OVER 250 SYMPTOMS, MOSTLY INTESTINAL AND DIGESTIVE-RELATED, AND SOME CONSUMERS DO LINK MODERN OBESITY WITH GLUTEN.
THE RESULT HAS BEEN A GROWING SELECTION OF GLUTEN-FREE FOODS FOR THOSE WHO WANT TO ALTER THEIR DIETS. I CERTAINLY HAVE NO ARGUMENT WITH PEOPLE WHO MAKE THAT CHOICE, BUT WOULD POINT OUT A COUPLE OF THINGS.  FIRST, THE GLUTEN CONTENT OF GRAINS HAS NOT BEEN INCREASING DUE TO BREEDING FOR BETTER GRAINS.
SECOND, WHEN THE LIST OF SYMPTOMS IS AS LONG AS IT IS FOR GLUTEN SENSITIVITY, CLEARLY ESTABLISHING CAUSE AND EFFECT IS VERY HARD. MOM AND DAD ATE VIRTUALLY THE SAME GRAIN PRODUCTS WE DO, AND THERE ARE MYRIAD OTHER CAUSES FOR GENERATIONAL HEALTH DIFFERENCES.  THAT SAID, THIS IS A FOOD EXPERIMENT ANYONE CAN CONDUCT AND REACH THEIR OWN CONCLUSIONS. UNPROVEN CLAIMS ABOUT GLUTEN-FREE PRODUCTS, HOWEVER, HELP NO ONE.

  

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