AgDay Daily Recap - May 20, 2011

May 20, 2011 05:30 AM
 

TODAY ON AGDAY:
MAY 20, 2011

FARMLAND VALUES:
THE VALUE OF GOOD QUALITY FARMLAND IN THE MIDWEST CONTINUES ITS METEORIC RISE. IN FACT, THE RATE OF INCREASE FOR PRIME FARMLAND IN THE CENTRAL CORNBELT IS HITTING LEVELS NOT SEEN SINCE THE LATE 1970'S. THE FEDERAL RESERVE BANK OF CHICAGO REPORTS AN INCREASE OF 16% IN YEAR-TO-YEAR COMPARISONS FOR GOOD QUALITY FARMLAND. THAT DISTRICT COVERS IOWA, ILLINOIS AND INDIANA, WISCONSIN AND MICHIGAN - - THE HEART OF THE CORNBELT. AND THAT'S THE KEY WORD - CORN. THE SURGING PRICE OF CORN AND OTHER COMMODITIES IS PLAYING A ROLE IN THE HUGE GAINS. THE CHICAGO FED SAYS THE INCREASE CAN ONLY BE MATCHED TO INCREASES SEEN IN 1979. THE FED SAYS FARMERS, RATHER THAN INVESTORS, PURCHASED A HIGHER PROPORTION OF THE ACRES SOLD. CASH RENTS ARE ALSO UP, ANYWHERE FROM 14-20%.

LOUISIANA FLOODING:
IN LOUSIANA, CROPS THAT WERE NOT DROWNED OUT BY THE MISSISSIPPI RIVER ARE STRUGGLING WITH DROUGHT. POINT COUPEE PARISH WAS IN THE DIRECT LINE OF THE FLOOD WATERS WHEN THE CORPS OF ENGINEERS OPENED THE FLOODGATES. OFFICIALS WITH THE LSU AG CENTER SAY ABOUT 10% OF THE ROW-CROPS IN THAT PARISH WERE FLOODED...INCLUDING CORN, COTTON, SOYBEANS AND SUGAR-CANE. LSU SAYS MANY OF THOSE CROPS WERE ACTUALLY DEALING WITH DRYNESS BEFORE THE FLOODWATERS HIT. AGCENTER OFFICIALS SAY WHY MUCH OF THE MEDIA ATTENTION HAS FOCUSED ON THE DRAMATIC PICTURES OF THE FLOOD, THE BIGGER STORY WILL BE ON THE DROUGHT WHICH HAS A MUCH BROADER IMPACT ON LOUISIANA GROWERS.

TEXAS DROUGHT:
AGRICULTURE OFFICIALS IN TEXAS SAY PRELIMINARY NUMBERS SHOW THAT THE WORST DROUGHT IN DECADES HAS BROUGHT MORE THAN A BILLION DOLLARS IN LOSSES....AND COULD EASILY SURPASS THE SINGLE-YEAR RECORD. ECONOMISTS FOR TEXAS AGRILIFE EXTENSION PEG PRELIMINARY LOSSES AT 1.5 BILLION DOLLARS. SPOKESMAN BLAIR FANNIN SAYS THE AMOUNT INCLUDES COSTS RELATED TO LIVESTOCK AND WHEAT, CORN AND SORGHUM CROP LOSSES FROM NOVEMBER THROUGH MAY 1. IF DROUGHT CONDITIONS PERSIST INTO JUNE, OFFICIALS IN THE NATION'S SECOND-LARGEST AGRICULTURAL PRODUCER SAY LOSSES WILL EASILY TOP THE 2006 RECORD OF FOUR BILLION DOLLARS. SOME PARTS OF TEXAS HAVE NOT SEEN ANY SIGNIFICANT PRECIPITATION SINCE AUGUST. MUCH OF TEXAS IS IN THE TWO WORST STAGES OF DROUGHT. HERE'S MIKE HOFFMAN WITH CROP WATCH, MIKE.

KANSAS WIND FARM BAN:
THANKS MIKE. WINDY WEATHER IN PARTS OF EASTERN KANSAS WON'T BE CHURNING OUT POWER ANY TIME SOON. KANSAS GOVERNOR SAM BROWNBACK IS CARVING OUT 11,000 SQUARE MILES--SAYING IT’S OFF LIMITS TO WIND FARMS. THE NO WIND FARM DESIGNATION WAS ANNOUNCED EARLIER THIS MONTH. GOVERNOR BROWNBACK IS HOPING TO MAKE THE KANSAS TALLGRASS PRAIRIE A PREMIERE TOURIST DESTINATION. THE EXPANDED WINDFARM FREE DESIGNATION LIKELY KILLS SEVERAL PROJECTS CURRENTLY IN THE WORKS. PARTS OF THE KANSAS PRAIRIE WERE ALREADY OFF LIMITS--THE NEW DIRECTIVE MORE THAN DOUBLES THE AREA.

SOIL RESIDUAL:
THE RISK OF GLYPHOSATE RESISTANCE IS CAUSING SOME FARMERS TO RE-THINK THEIR WEED CONTROL TOOL-BOX. TODD GLEASON FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS SAYS SOIL RESIDUAL HERBICIDE IS AN OPTION.

BRAZIL CATTLE:
IN AGRIBUSINESS THIS MORNING, BRAZILIAN GOVERNMENT OFFICIALS ARE EYEING CATTLE RANCHERS IN THE AMAZON. NEW DATA SHOWS DEFORESTATION INCREASED BY 26% IN JUST 9 MONTHS--THAT'S ABOUT 710 SQUARE MILES. THE COUNTRIES ENVIRONMENTAL MINISTER IS VOWING TO SEIZE THE CATTLE OF RANCHERS DEFORRESTING THE AREA.

BRAZIL FARMING:
AND NEW ESTIMATES EXPECT MORE THAN 120 BILLION DOLLARS TO END UP IN THE BRAZILIAN FARM ECONOMY THIS YEAR. THAT'S UP 12% OVER LAST YEAR. HIGHER COMMODITY PRICES MEANS FARMERS WILL BE SPENDING MORE ON EQUIPMENT AND INPUTS. AG LEADERS IN THAT COUNTRY SUGGEST THE INVESTMENTS COULD IMPROVE LONG-TERM PRODUCTIVITY AND RAPIDLY EXPAND ACREAGE. STATE OFFICIALS SAY ROUGHLY 25 MILLION ACRES OF SPOILED CATTLE PASTURE COULD BE REPLANTED IN CASH CROPS GIVEN THE EXTRA MONEY FOR INPUTS.

EU RENEWABLE FUELS:
BUT TO SELL IT THERE FARMERS ARE BEING ASKED BY U.S. COMPANIES TO "SELF CERTIFY" THAT THEY MEET NEW SUSTAINABILITY GUIDELINES.  THESE EUROPEAN UNION RULES ARE PART OF THEIR RENEWABLE ENERGY DIRECTIVE. HOWEVER THE DEBATE REMAINS ON WHAT EXACTLY SUSTAINABILITY MEANS--AND HOW IT'S DEFINED.

ANALYSIS:
ALAN KEMPER

IN THE COUNTRY; NICK’S ACRES:
MORE MOISTURE HAS CAUSED NORTH DAKOTA FARMERS TO SIT ON THE SIDELINES AND WAIT EVEN LONGER. SPRING PLANTING IS ABOUT 20 DAYS LATER THAN LAST YEARS RAIN-SOAKED SEASON. EVERY MAJOR CROP IS 40, 50 OR 60 PERCENTAGE POINTS BEHIND THE AVERAGE PACE. REPORTER NICK DREYER FROM AFFILIATE KMOT-TV IN MINOT, NORTH DAKOTA ALSO FARMS. HE HAS ABOUT 150 ACRES AND ONE HECKUVA CROP ADVISOR IN HIS DAD, ORLAN. NICK TAKES US TO HIS FARM WHERE CONDITIONS ARE ABOUT AS WET AS THEY COULD BE. THANKS NICK...AND GOOD LUCK. WE'LL BE RIGHT BACK.

LINDSAY:
IT IS WITH TREMENDOUS REGRET THAT WE MUST END TODAY'S PROGRAM ON A TERRIBLY DIFFICULT NOTE. OUR OWN AGRIBUSINESS DIRECTOR, LINDSAY HILL, WAS TRAGICALLY KILLED YESTERDAY MORNING IN A CAR CRASH IN WEST CENTRAL OHIO. LINDSAY HAD ONLY WORKED WITH US FOR A SHORT WHILE, BUT IT WAS IMMINENTLY CLEAR FROM DAY ONE - SHE GOT IT. LINDSAY KNEW AGRICULTURE AND ITS IMPORTANCE IN THIS COUNTRY. FOR THOSE OF YOU WHO DON'T KNOW, LINDSAY GREW UP ON A FAMILY FARM IN DEGRAFF OHIO. SHE EARNED AN AG COMMUNICATIONS DEGREE FROM 'THE OHIO STATE UNIVERSITY" AND THEN WORKED IN AG BROADCASTING--BOTH IN RADIO AND TELEVSION-- IN HER HOME STATE BEFORE FINDING HER WAY TO OUR DOOR. IN ADDITION TO HER DUTIES AT FARM JOURNAL TELEVISION, LINDSAY WAS A LEADER IN OUR INDUSTRY - SERVING AS PRESIDENT OF THE NATIONAL ASSOCIATION OF FARM BROADCASTERS. SHE INSTANTLY BECAME A VALUABLE TEAM MEMBER HERE AT FARM JOURNAL. QUICK WITH A SMILE, EASY TO LAUGH AND SHARP ON THE JOB. WHETHER IT WAS INTERVIEWING THE SECRETARY OF AGRICULTURE, OR MISS AMERICA--LINDSAY GOT IT. JUST THIS WEEK SHE POSTED ON HER FACEBOOK PAGE,
"SPENDING THE DAY WORKING IN DOWNTOWN CHICAGO. DON'T TELL ANYONE, BUT I MAY LOVE THIS JOB!" AND WHILE IT WAS ONLY FOR A SHORT TIME, WE LOVED HER TOO. LINDSAY HAD A UNIQUE PERSPECTIVE ON A LIFE WELL LIVED - SHE WROTE…"LIFE IS TOO SHORT TO WAKE UP WITH REGRETS. LOVE THE PEOPLE WHO TREAT YOU RIGHT. FORGIVE THOSE WHO DON'T. BELIEVE EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON. IF IT CHANGES YOUR LIFE, LET IT. NOBODY SAID LIFE WOULD BE EASY, THEY JUST PROMISED IT WOULD BE WORTH IT"
FROM EVERYONE HERE AT FARM JOURNAL TELEVISION AND FARM JOURNAL MEDIA, WE OFFER OUR DEEPEST CONDOLENCES TO LINDSAY'S FAMILY AND FRIENDS. YOU ARE IN OUR THOUGHTS, OUR PRAYERS AND LINDSAY WILL FOREVER BE IN OUR HEARTS.

 

 

 

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