Rains ease drought in southern Brazil... Meteorologist Gail Martell of MartellCropProjections.com says the weather pattern finally changed over the weekend, allowing much-needed rains into dry areas of southern Brazil. "The door is now wide open for showers, whereas previously a blocking ridge of high pressure warded off rainfall," she says.
Martell says the forecast calls for above-normal precip and moderating temps this week across southern Brazil to aid filling soybeans. But she notes that previous hot and dry weather in Parana is confirmed via satellite imagery, which shows vegetative health declined from late January to mid-February. Click here for related images.
Soybean terminal damaged at Brazilian port... A shiploader at Rio Grande port in southern Brazil, the country's second largest soy port, was damaged, according to a Reuters report. There are still four berths (of five) operational at the port, but it will reportedly take two weeks to fix the damaged shiploader.
Saskatchewan government calls for immediate action on grain transportation relief... The Saskatchewan government is asking the federal government to immediately oversee negotiations between the grain companies and railways that would "establish specific parameters around getting grain from the farm gate to ships at port" to deal with backlogs caused by last year's record Canadian crops.
According to Economy Minister Bill Boyd, railway companies say they are committed to "ramping up to have thousands more grain cars per week taking grain to ports" through the end of 2014. Grain companies assure Boyd they will provide 24-hour-a-day service if the grain arrives. Boyd also said basis will closely be monitored to ensure the cash markets are aligned as grain car movement improves.
"During the course of our meetings, we were able to identify areas that will improve efficiencies for the grain transportation system and we support the Federal Government as it takes the lead in quickly moving these initiatives forward," Agriculture Minister Lyle Stewart said. "The Provincial Government will be monitoring the situation on a daily basis to see if both the grain companies and the rail companies come through." More at this link.
Wagstrom on PEDV: It will put producers out of business... Attendees of the Livestock and Poultry Outlook Session at USDA’s Ag Outlook Forum had the opportunity to hear from Liz Wagstrom, chief veterinarian with the National Pork Producers Council, about a topic very much on hog producers’ minds: the porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDV).
Wagstrom detailed some of the impact and implications of the disease as well as what is being done about it. Also of note, she pointed out that because PEDV is not an OIE-listed disease (World Organisation for Animal Health), the government has not looked at providing any sort of funding (such as from the Commodity Credit Corporation) to aid producers dealing with this outbreak. She also said the new farm bill orders a study on catastrophic disease insurance, but the results of that are obviously a long ways off. She concluded on the somber note: some producers will go out of business due to these losses. Get more details from Wagstrom's presentation.
Consolidated Grain won't accept new Syngenta corn trait... Consolidated Grain and Barge announced today it will not accept deliveries containing Syngenta's Duracade corn, the trait that's commercially available in the U.S. this year but not yet approved by China or the European Union. Consolidated Grain joins ADM, Cargill and Bunge in saying it will reject Duracade corn, while Gavilon has signed a deal with Syngenta to accept the new corn trait.