USFR Weekly Recap - March 26-27, 2016

March 26, 2016 03:30 AM
 

TODAY ON U.S. FARM REPORT:
MARCH 26-27, 2016


OPENING HEADLINES:
<FROM THE STUDIOS OF FARM JOURNAL BROADCAST,  THIS IS U.S. FARM REPORT.>  WELCOME TO U.S. FARM REPORT THIS EASTER  WEEKEND. I'M TYNE MORGAN, AND HERE'S WHAT WE'RE WORKING ON FOR YOU OVER THE NEXT 60 MINUTES.  EASTER HAMS ARE IN HIGH DEMAND, BUT FOR THIS FAMILY, IT'S PASTURE RAISED PORK MAKING APPETITES  GROW.   I DIDN'T THINK IT WOULD GROW THIS QUICKLY.
OUR FARM JOURNAL REPORT LOOKS AT HOW THIS FAMILY IS GETTING CREATIVE TO MEET THE SURGE IN DEMAND.   IN LEAVE A LEGACY, A FAMILY FARM WITH THE NEXT  GENERATION ALREADY AT WORK.    OUR GOALS... HAS ALWAYS BEEN TO GET BETTER BEFORE YOU GET  BIGGER. -->  WITH THE FOCUS ON QUALITY, WE'LL SHOW YOU WHY THE BROOKS FAMILY WAS A TOP PRODUCER OF THE  YEAR NOMINEE.   AND IN JOHN'S WORLD.   <COAL MINERS FACE A STARK FUTURE. AND IT'S GOING TO AFFECT THE FARMERS>  AND MIKE HOFFMAN HAS A CHECK OF WEATHER…
COLD AIR COULD DAMAGE WHEAT:
NOW FOR THE MARKET RELATED NEWS, A BLAST OF COLD TEMPERATURES THREATENED THE PLAINS'   WHEAT CROP LAST WEEK, WITH MORE FRIGID AIR AND  EVEN SNOW EXPECTED THROUGH THE REGION THIS WEEKEND.   THE OKLAHOMA WHEAT COMMISSIONT ELLS ME WHILE IT'S TOO EARLY TO KNOW THE FULL EXTENT OF   DAMAGE, NORTHWEST OKLAHOMA COULD BE THE  HARDEST HIT.  THE CROP ISN'T AS FAR ALONG AS WHEN THE LATE  APRIL FREEZE HIT LAST YEAR, BUT THE DIFFERENCE IS THIS WEEK'S WEATHER BROUGHT CONSECUTIVE DAYS  OF BELOW FREEZING TEMPS, EVEN DIPPING INTO THE SINGLE DIGITS IN THE PANHANDLE. 
MORE COLD TEMPS EXPECTED:
BUT MORE COLD AIR IS EXPECTED THIS WEEKEND, COUPLED WITH SNOW AND UP TO 60 MILE PER HOUR  WINDS. THEY TELL ME MOISTURE IS DEPSERATELY NEEDED MOVING FORWARD.  AND KANSAS STATE TELLS US IT'S A SIMILAR SITUATION IN THE SUNFLOWER STATE.. 
POPULAR PORK:
 AMERICANS ARE EXPECTED TO EAT THE MOST PORK  SINCE 2007 THIS YEAR. THAT'S CUASING A BULLISH REACTION BY THE FUNDS  AND NOW HOG FUTURES ARE AT A 9-MONTH HIGH. AND BACON CONTINUES TO FLY OFF THE SHLEVES, BOOSTING PORK BELLY PRICES BY 30 PERCENT JUST  THIS YEAR.   FAST-FOOD GIANTS LIKE MCDONALDS ARE SELLING MORE BACON. 
COLD STORAGE MEAT NUMBERS SHRINK:
THE U-S FREEZERS ARE STILL FULL OF MEAT, BUT THE LATEST USDA NUMBERS SHOW WE'RE STARTING TO CHEW THROUGH SOME OF IT.  USDA'S COLD STORAGE REPORT RELEASED TUESDAY  SHOWS RED MEAT SUPPLIES SOFTENING 3 PERCENT  FROM LAST MONTH. THAT'S ALSO 5 PERCENT LOWER THAN LAST YEAR. BEEF IN COLD STORAGE DROPPED 5 PERCENT FROM  LAST MONTH. AND LOOKING AT THE PORK IN COLD  STORAGE THAT'S BEEN AT RECORD LEVELS. IT  INCREASED SLIGHTLY FROM LAST MONTH, BUT IT'S THE  SMALLEST GAIN FOR THE MONTH SINCE 2007. PORK  SUPPLIES ARE OFF 8 PERCENT FROM LAST YEAR. 
CATTLE ON FEED REPORT RELEASED FRIDAY:
THE LATEST CATTLE ON FEED REPORT JUST RELASED FRIDAY WAS MORE BEARISH THAN THE TRADE EXPECTED. THE REPORT SHOWS THE NUMBER OF CATTLE AND CALVES ON FEEDING RISING 1 PERCENT FROM A YEAR AGO. USDA SAYS CATTLE AND CALVES ON FEED TOTAL 10 POINT 8 MILLION HEAD.  LOOKING AT PLACESMENTS, THOSE ARE 10 PERCENT HIGHER THAN 2015, AT 1 POINT 71 MILLION HEAD.  AND MARKETINGS OF CATTLE ROSE 5 PRCENT, TO 1 POINT 59 MILLION.  
MILK PRODUCTION INCREASED:
DESPITE LOWER MILK PRICES, MILK PRODUCTION  INCREASED DURING THE MONTH OF FEBRUARY.  USDA SAYS PRODUCERS CHURNED OUT 4 POINT 6 PERCENT MORE POUNDS OF MILK IN FEBRUARY THAN  THEY DID THE SAME TIME LAST YEAR.  PRODUCTION PER COW JUMPED UP 78 POUNDS.  WHILE THIS IS IMPRESSIVE, OUR PARTNERS AT DAIRY  HERD MANAGEMENT SAY YOU HAVE TO FACTOR IN THE  LEAP YEAR.  SO ACTUAL NUMBERS SHOW PRODUCTION IS UP LESS  THAN 1 PERCENT.  
PANAMA CANAL SOON TO OPEN:
THE LONG AWAITED PANAMA CANAL EXPANSION IS NOW  SCHEDULED TO OPEN SUNDAY, JUNE 26TH. SEVERAL CONSTRUCTION DELAYS AND DISPUTES PUSHED THE ORIGINAL DATE BACK NEARLY A YEAR. THE U-S SOY TRANSPORATION COALITION SAYS NEARLY 600 MILLION BUSHELS OF U-S SOYBEANS GO THROUGH THE CANAL EVERY YEAR. BUT THE EXPANSION COULD  ALLOW FOR AN ADDITIONAL 500 THOUSAND BUSHELS PER VESSEL TO SHIP OUT OF SOUTHERN LOUSIANA  TERMINALS. THAT'S 5 TO 8 MILLION DOLLARS OF  ADDITIONAL REVENUE PER SHIP.  
NATIONAL WEATHER:
THOSE ARE THE HEADLINES...METEOROLOGIST MIKE  HOFFMAN JOINS US NOW WITH WEATHER. MIKE, MOTHER NATURE TEASED MOST OF US WITH WARMER  TEMPERATURES, NOW THAT SPRING IS HERE, COLD BLASTS ARE PUTTING US ON A BIT OF A ROLLERCOASTER RIDE.  
THANKS, TYNE. YOU'RE ABSOLUTELY RIGHT. AND I THINK THE ROLLERCOASTER  RIDE CONTINUES INTO THE FIRST WEEK TO 10 DAYS OF APRIL AND THEN WE MAY GET A FAIR AMOUTN WARMER ACROSS MOST OF CORN BELT. IN THE MEANTIME, THEDROUGHT MONITOR SHWOS DRY POCKETS IN HIGH PLAINS BUT MOST OIS STILL OUT WEST EVEN THOUGH THIS AREA HAS SHRUNK DRAMATICALLY OVER PAST COUPLE OF MONTHS.

THANKS, MIKE. FROM COLD STORAGE TO NEXT WEEK'S  ACREAGE REPORT, OUR ANALYSTS HAVE A LOT OF  GROUND TO COVER THIS WEEK AFTER THE BREAK.  <YOU'RE WATCHING U.S. FARM REPORT WITH HOST  TYNE MORGAN, COMMENTATOR JOHN PHIPPS,  AGRIBUSINESS DIRECTOR AL PELL AND  METEOROLOGIST MIKE HOFFMAN. U.S. FARM REPORT. TRUSTED. TIMELY. TRADITION.>
ROUNDTABLE 1:
>> WELCOME BACK TO U.S. FARM REPORT. MATT BENNETT OF BENNETT CONSULTING AND CHIP NELLINGER OF BLUE REEF AGRIMARKETING. HAD A NICE LITTLE RALLY THIS WEEK. WHY? IN THE SOYBEAN MARKET.
SOY RALLY:
>> WELL, I THINK IT’S KIND OF MULTI-FACETED. REALLY, IT’S KIND OF STARTED HERE A FEW WEEKS AGO WITH PALM OIL, WHICH HAD SOY OIL RALLYING IN SYMPATHY. YOU’VE HAD A BIG MOVE IN THE BRAZILIAN CURRENCY, FUNDS WERE SHORT, LITTLE BIT OF A DOCK STRIKE TALK EARLIER THIS WEEK. THROW ALL THAT IN THE POT AND YOU KNOW, IT WAS THE MAKINGS OF A NICE SHORT COVERING RALLY. WE GOT ABOVE THE (INDISCERNIBLE) MOVING AVERAGE, SO A LITTLE BIT FUNDAMENTAL, LITTLE BIT TECHNICAL, AND IT WAS A NICE BOUNCE OFF THE LOWS IN A SHORT PERIOD OF TIME.
>> EXACTLY. WE’LL TAKE IT. SO THIS RALLY, WE’VE BEEN HEARING SELL THE RALLY, SELL THE RALLIES, IS THIS ONE WE SHOULD HAVE BEEN SELLING, MATT?
ACREAGE REPORT COMING OUT:
>> NEXT WEEK USDA COMING OUT WITH AN ACREAGE REPORT, COULD IT -- I MEAN I KNOW IT USUALLY IS A MARKET MOVER, DO YOU EXPECT THAT TO BE THE CASE NEXT WEEK AS WELL, MATT?
>> WELL, I THINK IF IT’S A REALLY EXTREME NUMBER AS FAR AS EITHER CORN OR SOYBEAN ACREAGE GOES THEN YEAH, IT COULD DEFINITELY BE A MARKET MOVER FOR A WHILE, BUT TO ME, I’M LOOKING FOR SOMETHING WITHIN THE RANGES, PROBABLY NOT MUCH OFF OF 90 MILLION ACRES ON CORN. YOU KNOW, ON SOYBEANS MAYBE 83.5 WOULD BE MY OVER/UNDER. IF YOU GET TOO FAR AWAY FROM THOSE IT COULD MOVE THINGS, BUT I THINK PEOPLE ARE GOING TO LOOKING AT THE WEATHER VERY CLOSELY NOT TOO LONG AFTER THE REPORTS ARE RELEASED, AND PROBABLY ACTUALLY THE DAY OF THE REPORT.
ROUNDTABLE 2:
 WELCOME BACK. WELL, THIS WEEK I MADE SOME PHONE CALLS TO LIKE THE KANSAS WHEAT COMMISSION, OKLAHOMA WHEAT COMMISSION, AND THEY TOLD ME, DAMAGE STILL YET TO BE SEEN. THEY DON’T KNOW THE EXTENT OF THE DAMAGE, BUT THEY’RE FACING MORE COLD TEMPERATURES. THIS WEEKEND, POSSIBLY ANOTHER BLAST COMING THROUGH, AND THEY NEED A RAIN DESPERATELY, SO THE DAMAGE THAT WE COULD SEE IN THE PLAINS, IS IT ENOUGH TO MOVE THIS WHEAT MARKET.
WHEAT SUPPLY:
>> BUT NO MATTER WHAT, WHEN WE LOOK AT THIS WHEAT PICTURE, WE STILL HAVE A HEFTY SUPPLY, AND IT DOESN’T SEEM LIKE THAT’S GOING ANYWHERE, MATT.
>> NO, IT DOESN’T, AND IT’S NOT ONLY IN THE U.S., BUT OBVIOUSLY IN THE WORLD, AND THE ONE THING ABOUT THE WHEAT SITUATION IS YOU’RE ALWAYS A MONTH OR TWO AWAY FROM HARVEST SOMEWHERE IN THE WORLD, AND WE’RE NOT SEEING ENOUGH WEATHER ISSUES AROUND THE WORLD TO BE ABLE TO GET FRIENDLY TO THE WHEAT MARKET, AND SO IT’S KIND OF A TOUGH CALL. I THINK THAT IF WE HAVE MAJOR DAMAGE, LIKE CHIP’S SAYING, IF WE VERIFY THAT LAYER, IT MIGHT BE ABLE TO GIVE A LITTLE BIT OF CAUSE FOR THE FUNDS TO LIGHTEN UP THEIR SHORT POSITION, BUT I DON’T THINK THAT WE’RE GOING TO SWITCH FROM A SHORT POSITION TO A LONG POSITION ANYTIME SOON, AND THEREFORE I DON’T SEE ANY SORT OF A LARGE-SCALE WHEAT RALLY ANY TIME IN THE NEAR FUTURE.
CROP INSURANCE:
>> AND UNFORTUNATELY, WHEN WE LOOK AT THAT CROP INSURANCE PRICE, STILL BELOW THE COST OF PRODUCTION FOR MANY, SO ACREAGE GUESSES ON WHEAT, DO YOU THINK THAT IT’LL CHANGE MUCH, CHIP?
>> WELL, I THINK THAT REMAINS TO BE SEEN HERE. OBVIOUSLY, IT WAS DOWN, THE PLANTED ACREAGE WAS WAY DOWN, SO THAT – THAT’S THE FUNCTION OF THE MARKETS THOUGH, THESE CHEAPER PRICES WILL START RESTRICTING AND CUTTING BACK ON ACREAGE, NOT JUST HERE BUT IN THE WORLD, AND IT JUST TAKES A WHILE TO SIFT THROUGH AND SEE THE RESULTING, YOU KNOW, LOWER SUPPLY, SO WE GOT A HUGE AMOUNT OF WHEAT IN THE WORLD AS MATT MENTIONED TO CHEW THROUGH BEFORE YOU TALK ABOUT A BIG BULL MARKET.
COLD STORAGE:
>> WE ALSO HAVE A HUGE AMOUNT OF MEAT IN COLD STORAGE, BUT IT SEEMS LIKE THE LATEST COLD STORAGE REPORT THAT WE MAY BE EATING THROUGH SOME OF THAT. IS THAT SOLELY -- IS THAT -- IS THAT LESS PRODUCTION, IS THAT MORE DEMAND, WHAT IS THE SITUATION THERE?
BEEF:
>> SPEAKING OF DEMAND, IT HAS BEEN KIND OF A WEAKER DEMAND PICTURE FOR BEEF WHEN YOU CONSIDER HOW GOOD OF A PRICE YOU CAN GET FOR PORK AT THE GROCERY STORE, SO WHAT IS THE DEMAND PICTURE MOVING FORWARD, CHIP, AND WHAT’S YOUR OUTLOOK ON PRICES?
>> YEAH, I THINK THAT’S BEEN A LARGE PORTION OF WHY THE HOG MARKET –- PORK MARKET –- HAS BEEN SO STRONG. WE’VE HAD A BIG COMPETITIVE ADVANTAGE THERE RELATIVE TO BEEF THAT HAS BEEN MUCH HIGHER PRICED, COMING OFF OF RECORD HIGH PRICES ACTUALLY, SO YOU KNOW, I THINK THAT’S HELPED THE PORK MARKET, BUT YOU’VE GOT TO UNDERSTAND WE’RE UP THERE AT OR ABOVE EIGHTY DOLLARS FOR SUMMER MONTH HOGS. FROM A HOG PRODUCER’S STANDPOINT, YOU’VE GOT TO LOOK AT THAT AS AN OPPORTUNITY TO PROTECT, AND I’M HOPEFUL GOING FORWARD. YOU KNOW, WE’VE HAD A COUPLE, TWO OR THREE SPRINGS AND EARLY SUMMERS IN A ROW HERE, THEY’VE BEEN PRETTY POOR WEATHER, SO HOPEFULLY IF WE GET ANY TYPE OF A NORMAL SPRING GROWING SEASON, WARMER WEATHER EARLY, WE CAN KIND OF KICK START DEMAND, AND THAT CAN HELP US OUT TOO ALONG THE WHOLE MEAT DEMAND FRONT.
GROWING SEASON:
>> GROWING SEASON CANNOT COME SOON ENOUGH, THAT’S FOR SURE. THIS U.S. DOLLAR, WE’VE SEEN IT STRENGTHEN A LITTLE BIT. YOU THINK WE’LL CONTINUE TO SEE THAT HAPPEN?
>> WELL, AS WE WERE TALKING EARLIER, YOU KNOW WHENEVER YOU WERE LOOKING AT FIVE OR SIX MONTH LOWS LAST WEEK, I THINK PART OF THE REASON WHY THE DOLLAR HAS REBOUNDED JUST A LITTLE BIT IS JUST SIMPLY BECAUSE IT’D BEEN BEING SOLD, I MEAN SIGNIFICANTLY LATELY. AND SO YOU KNOW, I THINK THE OVERRIDING THING THAT I’M LOOKING AT WHENEVER I’M LOOKING AT CURRENCIES IS WHAT’S GOING TO BE THE RELATIONSHIP OF THE DOLLAR TOWARDS THE REAL, BECAUSE AS WE’VE SEEN LATELY, YOU KNOW WHEN THE REAL HAS RALLIED A LITTLE BIT, IT’S DEFINITELY GIVEN A BOOST TO OUR COMMODITY PRICES.
MARKET RALLY:
>> WELCOME BACK FOR MARKETS NOW. CHIP, LET’S START WITH YOU.
>> WELL, I THINK THAT THE IMPORTANT THING HERE IS WE’VE BEEN IN REALLY NARROW RANGES FOR MOST OF THE WINTER, SIX MONTHS, BASICALLY. THE MARKETS ARE STARTING TO SHOW SOME LIFE. HAVE A PLAN. A LOT OF PRODUCERS HAVE DISENGAGED FROM THE MARKET. I THINK THE VOLATILITY’S STILL GOING TO BE THERE THIS SUMMER, BUT YOU’VE GOT TO HAVE A PLAN THAT STARTS WITH KNOWING WHAT IS YOUR TRUE COST OF PRODUCTION. IF YOU DON’T KNOW THAT, YOU DON’T KNOW WHEN TO TAKE ACTION.
TEASE:
>> THANK YOU BOTH FOR BEING HERE. SOME GOOD ADVICE THIS WEEK. PLEASE STAY WITH US. JOHN PHIPPS JOINS US WHEN WE COME BACK.
 JOHN’S WORLD:
THE TOPIC FOR THIS WEEK'S JOHN'S WORLD-- THE WAR ON COAL. THE GOVERNMENT IS SHUTTING DOWN HUNDREDS OF COAL MINES, COSTING MILLIONS OF MINERS THEIR LIVELIHOOD. IN A DRIVE FOR CLEANER AIR AND TO CUT BACK OVERSUPPLY, THESE WORKERS WILL BE FACED WITH A STARK FUTURE: COAL MINERS ARE WELL-PAID IN AREAS WHERE THERE ARE FEW OTHER EMPLOYMENT  ALTERNATIVES. OLDER MINERS ESPECIALLY CAN'T MAKE THE TRANSITION OR RELOCATION TO NEW JOBS. ENTIRE COMMUNITIES WILL BE DEVASTATED. 
WHILE THIS SOUNDS LIKE THE COMPLAINTS FROM  APPALACHIA, I'M TALKING ABOUT CHINA. AND LIKE ALWAYS IN CHINA YOU HAVE TO ADD MORE ZEROES TO THE NUMBERS. BETWEEN THE STEEL AND COAL  INDUSTRIES, OVER 6 MILLION CHINESE WORKERS WILL SOON BE LAID OFF. AND GUESS WHERE THE   GOVERNMENT PLANS TO RE-EMPLOY THEM?   ALONG WITH RETAIL AND PUBLIC SERVICES, FORMER MINERS WILL BE SHUNTED TO FORESTRY AND FARMING, ACCORDING TO OFFICIALS.  THIS IS NOT HOW MANY OF US THOUGHT AGRICULTURE WOULD DEVELOP IN CHINA.  OUR ASSUMPTION WAS THEY WOULD MIMIC OUR INDUSTRIALIZATION TO MERGE TINY FARMS INTO MORE  EFFICIENT LARGE OPERATIONS. 

TEASE:
 THANKS, JOHN.  STILL TO COME THIS EASTER WEEKEND, PORK IS IN HIGH DEMAND, BUT FOR ONE FAMILY, THEY'VE FOUND THEIR NICHE WITH PASTURE RAISED PORK. WE HAVE THEIR STORY AFTER THE BREAK. 
OPENING HEADLINES FOR THE SECOND HALF:
FROM THE STUDIOS OF FARM JOURNAL BROADCAST,  THIS IS U.S. FARM REPORT.  WELCOME BACK THIS EASTER WEEKEND TO U-S FARM  REPORT. WE HAVE MUCH MORE TO COVER OVER THE NEXT 30 MINUTES.  IN THE LIGHT OF THE SURGE IN DEMAND FOR THAT EASTER HAM, WE MEET A FAMILY THAT SAYS  ANTIOBIOTIC FREE PASTURE RAISED PORK IS BECOMING A POPULAR NICHE.
IN LEAVE A LEGACY, IT'S A TOP PRODUCER OF THE YEAR FINALIST WHO SAYS THEY STRIVE TO GET BETTER BEFORE THEY GET BIGGER.  AND IN CUSTOMER SUPPORT, HOW CAN  INFRASTRUCTURE SUPPORT FEEDING A GROWING  WORLD POPULATION.   COMPANIES ANNOUNCE GMO LABELING:
NOW FOR THE HEADLINES, IT'S A FLOOD OF COMPANIES  ANNOUNCING THEY WILL START LABELING THEIR PRODUCTS WITH GMO INGREDIENTS. IT'S ALL IN PREPERATION FOR VERMONT'S LABELING LAW   SCHEDUED TO TAKE EFFECT THIS SUMMER,  MARS, GENERAL MILLS AND CONAGRA ALL RECENTLY ANNOUNCING THE TRANSITION TO GMO LABELS.  
THE COMPANIES CITING THE MOVE IS NOT ONLY DUE TO  VERMONT'S GMO LABELING LAW WHICH BEGINS JULY  FIRST, BUT CONSUMER DEMAND.  MARS MAKES POPULAR CANDY LIKE M&MS, MILKY WAY, SNICKERS AND 3 MUSKATEERS.   AND CONAGRA IS THE PARENT COMPANY OF BRANDS  SUCH AS HUNTS, SLIM JIM, REDDI WHIP, BANQUET FROZEN MEALS AND MUCH MORE.  OBAMA’S VISIT TO CUBA YIELDS OPPORTUNITY TO U.S. AG:
PRESIDENT OBAMA VISITED CUBA THIS WEEK FOR  WHAT'S BEING CALLED AN HISTORIC TRIP.  IT'S THE FIRST TIME A SITTING PRESIDENT TRAVELED TO  THE COUNTRY SINCE CALVIN COOLIDGE IN 1928. THE PRESIDENT'S  VISIT INCLUDED MEETINGS WITH  CUBA'S CURRENT PRESIDENT, RAUL CASTRO, FOR EOCNOMIC AND DEMOCRATIC REFORMS.  THE PRESIDENT'S FOCUS IS ON NORMALIZING  RELATIONS WITH THE COUNTRY WHICH COULD BENEFIT  U-S AG BECAUSE OF THE CLOSE PROXIMITY TO CUBA.   AG SECREATRY TOM VILSACK JOINED THE PRESIDENT  ON THE TRIP, ANNOUCNING THIS WEEK THAT CHECKOFF FUNDS CAN BE USED TO HELP MARKET U-S FARM  PRODUCTS TO CUBA. 
NEW BOSS AT THE CATTLEMEN’S BEEF ASSOCIATION:
THE NATIONAL CATTLEMEN'S BEEF ASSOCIATION HAS A NEW C-E-O. THE ORANIZATION ANNOUCNING THIS WEEK, KENDAL FRAZIER, WILL ASSUME THE ROLE.  FRAZIER HAS BEEN IN THE IN-TER-IM C-E-O SINCE LAST SUMMER AND A MEMBER OF THE ASSOCIATION FOR  MORE THAN 30 YEARS. 
NATIONAL WEATHER:
THAT'S IT FOR NEWS...METEOROLOGIST MIKE HOFFMAN JOINS US NOW WITH THE NATIONAL   FORECAST. MIKE, IN TALKING WITH WHEAT GROWERS  THIS WEEK, THEY SAY TEH LAST 4 MONTHS HAVE BEEN EXTREMELY DRY AND NEED SOME RAIN.   THANKS, TYNE. IT DOES SEEM LIKE A LOT OF MOISTURE BEEN IN THE WEST COATS AND SKIPS OVER HIGH PLAISN AND THEN IT COMES FARTHER EAST.  WHILE THERE ARE CHANCES OVER NEXT COUPLE OF WEEKS FOR RAINS IN SOME OF THOSE WHEAT AREAS, IT STILL LOOKS LKIND OF LIKE A CHILLY WEATHER PATTERN TO ME OVERALL WHICH KEEPS IT KIND OF DRY. LET'S PUT THE JET STREAM INTO MOTION, YOU WILL NOTICE A CUTOFF LOW FOR A WHILE THIS WEEK AND THEN ONCE IT COME EAST, THAT'S A BLAST OF VERY COLD AIR FOR THIS TIME OFF YEAR AS WE HEAD INTO NEXT WEEKEND.
PORK EXPECTED TO BE IN HIGH DEMAND THIS YEAR:
AS WE REPORTED EARLIER IN THE SHOW, AMERICANS  ARE EXPECTED TO EAT THE MOST PORK SINCE 2007 THIS YEAR WITH HOG FUTURES HITTING A 9 MONTH  HIGH. BACON CONTINUES TO LEAD THE SURGE, BUT THIS TIME OF YEAR, IT'S HAMS IN HIGH DEMAND, WITH EASTER BEING THE SECOND BIGGEST HOLIDAY FOR HAM CONSUMPTION, RANKED JUST BEHIND CHRISTMAS.  FAMILY FARM RAISES PORK:
IN THIS FARM JOURNAL REPORT, WE MEET A FAMILY,  FINDING THEIR NICHE IN PASTURE RAISED PORK, IN  HOPES OF SUPPORTING THEIR FAMILY FOR GENERATIONS TO COME.   FOR NATE AND LOANN ROBINSON, RAISING ANIMALS  ISN'T JUST A JOB.  THE ROBINSONS HAVE SEEN A LOT OF CHANGE SINCE  THEY STARTED FARMING IN THE 70S.   FAMILY MOVES TO RAISE ANTIBIOTIC FREE PORK:
THEY DIDN'T WANT TO GIVE UP PASTURE-RAISED PORK.  THAT'S WHEN THEY WERE APPROACHED ABOUT TRANSITIONING TO ANTIOBIOTIC FREE.  BUT THE MOVE ALSO FORCED THE FAMILY TO  DOWNSIZE.  LOANN SAYS THEY FOUND THEIR SIZE, BUT THEN THEY HAD TO FIND THEIR CUSTOMER.   SO, THE FAMILY TRIED THEIR HANDS AT LOCAL  FARMERS MARKETS.   TASTY PORK SKYROCKETS DEMAND:
IN THE LAST 5 YEARS, DEMAND IS SKYROCKETING  WHAT STARTED AS A BUSINESS IN THEIR BACKYARD,   HAS BLOSSOMED INTO MAJOR CITIIES LIKE DETROIT AND CHICAGO. AND THE ONE THING THAT KEEPS   CUSTOMERS COMING BACK-- TASTE.   <IT WAS GOOD TASTING, IT WAS FATTIER, BUT IT HAD A LOT OF FLAVOR AND  PEOPLE COULD IDENTIFY WITH THAT. A LOT OF PEOPLE SAY WELL THIS IS THE WAY PORK USED TO TASTE.">  THE ROBINSONS NOW TAILOR THEIR PRODUCTS TO  CHICAGO FLAVORS.  
TEASE:
WHEN WE COME BACK, WE'LL CHECK BACK IN WITH  JOHN PHIPPS.    PITCH TO JOHN PHIPPS:
WE JUST TALKED ABOUT MEAT DEMAND IN OUR FARM  JOURNAL REPORT. BUT WHAT ABOUT THE STRAIN ON  FOOD PRODUCTION IN THE YEAR'S TO COME? JOHN  PHIPPS TACKLES THAT TOPIC IN CUSTOMER SUPPORT.
CUSTOMER SUPPORT:
 LOYAL VIEWER TRACEY LOCKWOOD IS CONCERNED  ABOUT FEEDING THE GRWOING WORLD POPULATION. "RATHER THAN WORKING SO DILIGENTLY TO PRODUCE  MORE AND MORE NOW, SHOULDN'T WE WORRY ABOUT  STILL HAVING FARMERS IN 2050 AND CONCENTRATE ON  DEVELOPING AN INFRASTRUCTURE THAT CAN SUPPORT  SUCH A MASSIVE INCREASE IN PRODUCTION?"  PERFECT TIMING, TRACEY. I JUST WROTE ABOUT THE  "FEEDING THE WORLD" PROBLEM IN TOP PRODUCER. IT  WILL BE IN THE SPRING ISSUE.  I SEE TWO SEPARATE ISSUES HERE. FIRST IS OUR  INFRASTRUCTURE PROBLEM. IF WE SET ASIDE THE   NEED FOR MORE AND BETTER TRANSPORATION  FACILTIES, WE HAVE A PRESSING PROBLEM WITH   REPAIRING WHAT WE DO HAVE. NOT JUST ROADS AND  BRIDGES, BUT RIVER AND OCEAN FACTILTIES,   RAILROADS AND AIRPORTS. UNFORTUNATELY, THIS IS  DISCRETIONARY SPENDING WHICH NOW IS NEAR THE BOTTOM OF POLITICAL PRIORITIES. IF YOU WADE  THROUGH THE CANDIDATES' BUDGET PLANS, AFTER  MASSIVE TAX CUTS, THERE SIMPLY WON'T BE ANY  MONEY LEFT FOR INFRASTRUCTURE.
TEASE:
THANKS, JOHN. WHEN WE COME BACK, WE'LL MEET A WISCONSIN DAIRY FARM WHO ALREADY HAS THE NEXT GENERATION AT WORK.   THIRD TOP PRODUCER WANTS CONSERVATION TO BE PART OF FARM LEGACY:
OVER THE PAST FEW MONTHS, WE'VE BEEN  INTRODUCING YOU TO THIS YEAR'S TOP PRODUCER OF THE YEAR'S FINALIST. AND THIS WEEKEND, YOU'LL MEET  THE THIRD AND FINAL ONE. WISCONSIN DAIRY PRODUCER RON BROOKS SAYS HE WANTS HIS CONSERVATION EFFORTS ON HIS FARM TO  BE A SIGNIFICANT PART OF HIS LEGACY.  ANOTHER KEY ELEMENT OF HIS SUCCESSION IS  DAUGHTER ZOEY WHO RETURNED TO THE FARM AFTER  COLLEGE.  TOGETHER THEY'RE BUILDING UPON SOUND LAND  STEWARDSHIP. FORGET PRICES, FORGET THE WEATHER, RON BROOKS  IS EXCITED ABOUT THE FUTURE.  AND THE LEGACY OF BROOKS FARMS IS RICH. FOUNDED  IN 1855 BY A HOMESTEAD CLAIM, WAUPACA WISCONSIN OPERATION HAS BEEN IN PURSUIT OF IMPROVEMENT  EVER SINCE.   THIS WAS GIVEN TO LUTHER WEST BY THE NATIVE INDIANS.  A PEACE PIPE SIGNIFYING COOPERATION AND   COEXISTENCE ALONG WITH IT COME A TREMENDOUS RESPONSIBILITY. ALONG WITH  IT COMES A FANTASTIC OPPORTUNITY BUT ALSO A RESPONSIBILITY. NOBODY  WANTS TO BE THE GENERATION THAT DROPS THE BALL.
TEASE:
WHEN WE COME BACK THIS EASTER WEEKEND,  TRACTOR TALES AND OUR COUNTRY CHURCH SALUTE. 

TRACTOR TALES:
WELCOME BACK TO TRACTOR TALES.  THIS WEEK WE  HEAD TO THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST FOR A CLASSIC  PONY.  THIS 1948 PONY FOUND IT'S WAY DOWN FROM CANADA  AND INTO RICK KISER'S HANDS. HE TOLD US THAT WHILE THIS TRACTOR WAS PRETTY COMMON, SOMETIMES PARTS WEREN'T SO EASY TO FIND.  MY WIFE LIKES TO DRIVE IT BECAUSE ITS EASY DRIVING.  
CHURCH SALUTE:
IN THIS WEEK'S COUNTRY CHURCH SALUTE, WE'RE PAYING TRIBUTE TO ST MARY'S THE ANNUNCIATION   CATHOLIC CHURCH IN NAVILLETON, INDIANA. THE  CHURCH WAS STARTED IN 1845 BY CATHOLIC SETTLERS. AND MORE THAN 170 YEARS LATER, THEY TELL US THE  CHURCH CONTINUES TO BE A THRIVING FAITH  COMMUNITY PARISH TODAY. OUR THANKS TO STEPHEN ATHERTON, WHO'S A LOCAL CORN AND SOYBEAN FARMER, FOR SENDING THAT INFORMATION IN. AND WE WISH YOU THE BEST THIS GROWING SEASON.    TYNE HAS VIEWER PHOTOS WHEN WE COME BACK.  

CROP COMMENTS:
IT MAY BE SPRING. BUT SOMEONE NEEDS TO REMIND  MOTHER NATURE OF THAT. COLE MERTENS IS LOCATED IN NORTHEASTERN  COLORADO. A LATE SNOW HIT THEIR FARM THIS WEEK. HE  SAYS WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES. LESS THAN 24 HOURS BEFORE HE POSTED THAT PICTURE ON  TWITTER, HE WAS WORKING IN THE FIELD, AS YOU CAN  SEE HERE.  TYNE, SOME OF THAT SNOW CAUSED WHITE OUT 
CONDITIONS, SHUTTING THE INTERSTATE DOWN.  
CLOSING:
 FOR JOHN, AL AND MIKE, I'M TYNE MORGAN. THANK  YOU FOR WATCHING U-S FARM REPORT.  BE SURE TO JOIN US RIGHT HERE AGAIN NEXT WEEK, AS WE WORK  TO BUILD ON OUR TRADITION. HAVE A GREAT WEEKEND, EVERYONE AND ENJOY THE FMAILY FOR EASTER, EVERYONE.  

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