TODAY ON AGDAY
MARCH 12, 2012
SUPPLY DEMAND REPORT:
Good morning. The world grain supply-demand numbers released Friday by USDA offered few surprises. Probably the biggest note was the improving corn picture in Brazil. The Brazilian corn crop was tweaked upward by a million metric tons. Most analysts expected a small drop. Meanwhile Brazilian soy production was cut more than expected. USDA increased Brazil's corn production by 1 million metric tons to 62. And held Argentina's corn production steady at 22 MMT. South American soybean forecasts were lowered to 68.5 MMT in Brazil, a 3.5 MMT decrease, and 46.5 MMT in Argentina, a 1.5 MMT decrease.
USDA also left U.S. ending stocks for corn unchanged at 801 million bushels. There was also no change to the soybean ledger at 275 million. USDA did lower U.S. wheat ending stocks by 20 million bushels to 825 million. Pro Farmer editor Chip Flory begins our team analysis. Chip.
The market is looking forward to the next major report which is the March 30th planting intentions report. The data is survey-based. Ohio State Tniversity Ag Economist Matt Roberts explains how what the market is seeing in advance of that report. As Matt Roberts just indicated, some farmers in the Corn Belt are getting an early start on field work. As far as corn planting, the NASS office in Georgia says 2% was planted as of last Monday. The new report will come out later today. In Texas, 6% is planted. The five year average sits at 12%.
The USDA says it will publish a comprehensive rule regarding BSE--also known as mad cow disease. The NCBA says the rule shows the U.S. is willing to comply with international standards. Leaders at NCBA say this should reduce trade barriers and increase beef exports.
In Missouri a state representative has introduced legislation that would prevent the state from making laws giving animals the same rights as humans. The bill's creator says he never dreamed he would have to argue about whether animals have equal or more rights than people.
Imagine being a freshman lawmaker and serving on the house agriculture committee just as congress is writing the next farm bill. Our partners at www.agweb.com, partnered with Agri-Pulse Communications, to conduct a roundtable discussion with three freshman members of congress. Agri-Pulse editor Sara Wyant hosted the discussion. Also on the panel was Missouri congress-woman Vicky Hartzler. If you would like to see it in its entirety, be sure to check out the webcast tomorrow morning. You see it starting at 9:30 eastern time on www.agweb.com and www.agri-pulse.com.
MILK COW PRODUCTIVITY:
New reports are showing a shift in the dairy industry. According to the Food and Ag policy research institute, dairy's in the western U.S. are expected to continue expanding.
And it's not just milk-- cheese is also moving. USDA's NASS office says 25% of cheese stocks now reside in the pacific and western part of the country. Al Pell caught up with Mike North to talk about an increase in production in a world of declining herds.
IN THE COUNTRY; IDITAROD COWBOY:
The Iditarod is known as the last great race on earth and it's currently underway in Alaska. Racers and their trusty team of dogs run more than one thousand miles from Anchorage to Nome. Competing again this year is 8 time Iditarod musher Lachlan Clarke. And as Anne Herbst of the Denver Post tells us, this Colorado cowboy is one tough competitor out on the trail. Thanks Anne. As of our last update--which was last Friday, Lachlan was running in 44th position. Bill Pinkham the new dad musher we told you about last week...he's 45th. Good luck gentlemen. Food and Your Family is next.
In food and your family consumers can not only expect to pay more at the pump this year, but also at the grocery store. And this is causing Americans to eat less meat. MU Extension economist Ron Plain projects meat prices to hit record levels in 2012. He says that's creating a price tag that's too much for some consumers to bear. As Americans look to cut corners in their budget, a house and car payment is not negotiable, but what they buy at the grocery store is. Meanwhile MU nutrition specialist Tammy Roberts says families can use this as an opportunity to learn proper portion control. According to Roberts, the correct portion size for meat is 2 to 3 ounces. It's expected beef consumption will take the biggest hit, with Americans eating 25% less beef this year than they did in 1980.
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