AgDay Daily Recap - February 25, 2011

February 25, 2011 06:35 AM
 

TODAY ON AGDAY:
FEBRUARY 25, 2011

USDA OUTLOOK FORUM:
THE AG DEPARTMENT SAYS AN ADDITIONAL TEN MILLION ACRES WILL BE PLANTED TO CROPS THIS YEAR, HITTING 255-MILLION ACRES. USDA SAYS THAT'S THE LARGEST YEAR-OVER-YEAR INCREASE SINCE 1996. CHIEF ECONOMIST JOE GLAUBER LAID OUT THE DEPARTMENTS ACREAGE OUTLOOK THIS WEEK AT THEIR ANNUAL OUTLOOK FORUM. GLAUBER EXPECTS FARMERS WILL PLANT 92-MILLION ACRES OF CORN, UP NEARLY FOUR MILLION. SOYBEANS WILL REACH 78 MILLION, UP A TICK. WHEAT IS FORECASTED TO REACH 57-MILLION AND COTTON PLANTINGS ARE EXPECTED TO COVER 12.8 MILLION. A GAIN OF ABOUT THREE MILLION ACRES. THE ECONOMIST SAYS DESPITE INCREASED PRODUCTION OF CORN AND SOYBEANS, GRAIN AND OILSEED MARKETS ARE STILL FORECAST TO BE TIGHT DUE TO STRONG EXPORT DEMAND AND STRONG DEMAND FOR BIOFUELS. HE ADDS, UNLESS WEATHER IS BETTER THAN NORMAL OR PLANTINGS INCREASE MORE THAN EXPECTED, STOCK LEVELS FOR CORN AND SOYBEANS SHOULD ONLY SEE MODEST GAINS. THAT COULD MEAN CONTINUED VOLATILITY IN THOSE MARKETS.

PRESIDENT CLINTON:
ALSO AT THE USDA OUTLOOK FORUM, PRESIDENT CLINTON WARNED FARMERS NOT USE SO MUCH CORN FOR ETHANOL THAT IT RAISES FOOD PRICES AND CAUSES RIOT IN OTHER COUNTRIES. CLINTON SAYS BIOFUELS ARE IMPORTANT TO REDUCE DEPENDANCE ON FOREIGN OIL. BUT HE SAYS CORN GROWERS SHOULD CONSIDER THE NEEDS OF DEVELOPING COUNTRIES. IN A STATEMENT FROM THE NATIONAL CORN GROWERS ASSOCIATION, PRESIDENT BART SCHOTT SAID "THE AMERICAN FARMER IS VERY AWARE OF THE WORLD'S RISING DEMAND FOR CORN...AND CONTINUES TO MEET THOSE NEEDS".

DARRELL GOOD CORN ACRES:
AS WE CONTINUE OUR INDEPTH COVERAGE OF THE ACREAGE BATTLE, NOTED AG ECONOMIST DARREL GOOD SAYS HALF OF THOSE TEN MILLION ADDITIONAL ACRES WILL NEED TO GO TO CORN. TODD GLEASON OF THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS HAS THE REPORT. FOR A CLOSER LOOK AT THE USDA'S OUTLOOK, WHICH INCLUDES GRAIN AND LIVESTOCK, GO TO www.agweb.com .

AG EXPORTS:
MEANWHILE, EXPORTS OF AG PRODUCTS CONTINUE TO BE ONE OF THE BRIGHT SPOTS IN THE NATION'S ECONOMY. AG SECRETARY TOM VILSACK SAYS THE QUARTERLY FORECAST SHOWS EXPORTS REACHING A RECORD 135-BILLION DOLLARS FOR FISCAL YEAR 2011. THERE'S ALSO A TRADE SURPLUS OF 47-BILLION DOLLARS. THE STRONG EXPORT NUMBERS ARE DUE TO THE WEAK U.S. DOLLAR.

FARM SHOW ECONOMY:
ANOTHER SIGN OF THE HEALTHY FARM ECONOMY HAS BEEN ATTENDANCE AT THE VARIOUS FARM SHOWS. OFFICIALS AT THE NATIONAL FARM MACHINERY SHOW JUST RELEASED ATTENDANCE FIGURES FROM THIS YEARS SHOW. MORE THAN 302,000 PEOPLE PACKED THE KENTUCKY EXPO CENTER DURING THE FOUR DAY RUN. THAT COMPARES TO LAST YEARS FIGURES WHICH WERE JUST OVER 299,000 PEOPLE. NICE WEATHER AND POSITIVE FARM INCOMES WERE THE PERFECT BLEND. WORKMAN SAYS EVERY EXHIBITOR SPACE WAS SOLD OUT THIS YEAR. AS A WAY TO REDUCE COSTS, WORKMAN SAYS SOME COMPANIES MAY HAVE HAD FEWER SALES PEOPLE WORKING THE FLOOR. AND SOME EXHIBITORS SAVE MONEY BY HAVING SHORTER STAYS IN LOUISVILLE.

EU BIOTECH:
IN AGRIBUSINESS, EUROPEAN REGULATORS HAVE OPENED THE DOOR, SLIGHTLY, FOR GENETICALLY MODIFIED CROPS TO ENTER THEIR PORTS.  EUROPEAN COUNTRIES HAVE BEEN HESITANT TO ADOPT THE TECHNOLOGY. THIS WEEK, THE EUROPEAN UNION SAID IT WILL ALLOW GM GRAIN, BUT THERE ARE TWO CAVEATS. ONE - THE GM CONTENT MUSTS BE LESS THAN ONE-TENTH OF ONE PERCENT OF THE SHIPMENT. PLUS, IT MUST ONLY BE USED FOR ANIMAL FEED. CURRENTLY, ANY FEED SHIPMENT WITH BIO-TECH GRAIN ON BOARD IS BLOCKED.

ANALYSIS:
GREG WAGNER

IN THE COUNTRY; THRESHING ROW:
A WHOLE HERD OF PRAIRIE 'DINOSAURS' HAVE BEEN PUT OUT TO PASTURE IN WESTERN NORTH DAKOTA. IT'S A RUSTING - BUT STILL IMPRESSIVE - COLLECTION OF THRESHING MACHINES THAT ONCE HARVESTED THE PLAINS. A FARMER WITH AN OBSESSION FOR THE ANTIQUES ROUNDED-UP THE MACHINES. CLIFF NAYLOR TELLS US HOW THEY SERVE AS SILENT SENTINELS TO THE HEY-DAYS OF FARMING.  THANKS CLIFF. NEXT, HOW FALSE ASSUMPTIONS CAN IMPACT FOOD SCARES. DETAILS IN FOOD AND YOUR FAMILY.

TOMATO SALMONELLA:
HOW FALSE ASSUMPTIONS CAN IMPACT FOOD SAFETY. DETAILS IN FOOD AND YOUR FAMILY. TWO YEARS AGO, A SALMONELLA SCARE BROUGHT THE TOMATO MARKET TO ITS KNEES. PRICES PLUMMETED. SOME GROWERS DUMPED THEIR CROPS. EVENTUALLY, INVESTIGATORS LINKED THE OUTBREAK TO BAD PEPPERS IN MEXICO. BUT BY THEN, THE DAMAGE WAS DONE. A NEW STUDY RELEASED IN THE NEW ENGLAND JOURNAL OF MEDICINE EXPLAINS HOW SCIENTISTS FROM THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND FDA IMPLICATED TOMATOES. IT SAYS DURING THE INVESTIGATION, PEOPLE THAT HAD GOTTEN ILL WERE ASKED TO REMEMBER WHAT THEY HAD EATEN WEEKS EARLIER. THE JOURNAL SAYS THE PATIENTS REMEMBERED EATING SALSA, BUT DIDN'T LINK IT TO ONE OF THE INGREDIENTS - - PEPPERS. A LOBBY GROUP FOR THE PRODUCE INDUSTRY SAYS BY PREMATURELY JUMPING TO CONCLUSION THAT IT WAS TOMATOES AT FAULT, THE CENTERS FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND FDA UN-WITTINGLY ALLOWED THE OUTBREAK TO CONTINUE.

PEANUT:
IN ANOTHER HIGH PROFILE SALMONELLA CASE, LAWMAKERS ARE WONDERING WHERE THE INVESTIGATION STANDS ON THE PEANUT PRODUCT RECALL FROM TWO YEARS AGO. SENATOR PATRICK LEAHY OF VERMONT HAS ASKED THE DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE FOR AN UPDATE ON THE CASE INVOLVING PEANUT CORPORATION OF AMERICA. A SALMONELLA OUTBREAK ASSOCIATED WITH THEIR PRODUCTS WAS LINKED TO 700 ILLNESSES AND NINE DEATHS. STILL, NO CRIMINAL CHARGES HAVE BEEN FILED.

 

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