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Army Rejects Plea to Boost Water for Mississippi Barges

Army Rejects Plea to Boost Water for Mississippi Barges | Grain du Coteau : News ( corn maize ethanol DDG soybean soymeal wheat livestock beef pigs canadian dollar) | Scoop.it
The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers rejected shippers’ requests to increase the flow from a major Mississippi River tributary, which a barge company said is needed to keep open the nation’s busiest waterway.
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Frank Backx : Aug 22, 2014 - Pro Farmer tour

Aug 22, 2014 - Pro Farmer tour

 

Pro Farmer tour sees C yield 169.3, 1.9 bu above USDA. S 45.35, almost same as USDA, maybe a bit price friendly?

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

Sincerely,

Aug 22, 2014 - Pro Farmer tour

 

Pro Farmer tour sees C yield 169.3, 1.9 bu above USDA. S 45.35, almost same as USDA, maybe a bit price friendly?

 

 

 

 

 

 

  

 

 

 

Sincerely,

Frank Backx
HDC Forest Location Manager 


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US soft red winter wheat high in fungal residues

Buyers of US soft red winter wheat were urged to "pay close attention" to the quality requirements after findings of a "variable" quality crop, including the highest levels of vomitoxin in at least nine years.

US Wheat Associates, which promotes demand for US supplies, said that "excessive moisture" either during wheat flowering or on ripe grain had resulted in a harvest of soft red winter wheat - the type traded in Chicago - with "variable quality".

"If there is a defining factor for soft red winter wheat quality this year, it is the timing of rainfall," the group said.

"Moisture was ample, or even excessive, for most of the soft red winter wheat area throughout the growing season."

'Barely meets the requirement'

The impact had been reflected in a protein level of 9.8%, below the average of 10.1%, and a Hagberg falling number, in essence a measure of sprouting, of 311 seconds, below the mean of 322 seconds.

However, the main concern was a test weight of 58.0 bushels per pound (76.3 kilogrammes per hectolitre), below the average of 58.6 and a figure which "just barely meets the requirement" to meet a Number 2 grading.

For vomitoxin, a toxic fungal residue which can leave grain unfit even for feed, the level of 2.2 parts per million was the highest on records going back to 2006, and well above the average of 1.3 parts per million.

Geographical differences

The contamination was worst in Corn Belt states such as Indiana, where the reading reached 2.9 parts per million, and Illinois, where it hit 5.2 parts per million, with the precipitation supporting large corn yield expectations less favourable for wheat crops.

"There is evidence that soft red winter wheat grown from Arkansas south avoided moisture at flowering but had rain at harvest, which affected soundness," US Wheat Associates said.

"In contrast, wheat farmers in Illinois, Indiana and Kentucky experienced more rain at flowering than they did at harvest so DON [vomitoxin] levels in that wheat are higher."

'Pay close attention'

The group added that, according to industry sources, "buyers should be able to source soft red winter wheat with less than 2.0 parts per million DON", with levels coming in low in eastern growing states such as North Carolina and Virginia.

And laboratory analysis suggested that the crop had "typical soft red winter wheat milling characteristics".

Nonetheless, it advised that importers "should pay close attention to their specifications to receive the wheat they need".

The comments come at a time when the quality of many foreign crops has been compromised too by late rains, with US Wheat Associates noting "high" concerns over French supplies, and a ProAgro estimate that 35% of Ukraine wheat will not meet milling specifications, compared with a typical 25-30%.

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Russia-Ukraine tensions send wheat prices soaring - again

Wheat futures put in a strong finish to the week, soaring 3% at one point, as Moscow-Kiev tensions revived again, after Russia, without consent, sent a humanitarian aid convoy into eastern Ukraine.

Soft red winter wheat for September touched $5.62 ½ a bushel in Chicago, crossing its 50-day moving average for the first time in three months, before easing back to $5.59 ¾  a bushel, a gain of 2.7%, with 10 minutes' trading to go.

Paris wheat for November closed 1.3% higher at E173.75 a tonne, ending above its 20-day moving average for only the second time in three months.

The gains followed a fresh rise in Russia-Ukraine tensions to which wheat markets have proven particularly sensitive, with both country's major exporters of the grain.

'Direct invasion'

A week after an attack by Ukraine troops on a Russian column which had crossed the border, the cause of the unrest this time was the unauthorised entry of a Russian humanitarian convoy into Ukraine.

The convoy's move into Ukraine, without the consent of Kiev and the involvement of the International Committee of the Red Cross, was condemned by Nato and the European Commission, while being termed by Valentyn Nalyvaichenko, head of Ukraine's SBU state security service, as "a direct invasion".

And in grain markets, as after last Friday's hostilities, injected risk premium into prices to reflect the threat of export disruptions.

"The market is demonstrating strength again this Friday off of uncertainty out of Russia/Ukraine," Darrell Holaday at US broker Country Futures said.

'Quality and quantity concerns'

Other brokers highlighted the support to prices too from the concerns of a poor quality European Union crop, with Strategie Grains' estimate last week that only 59% of the harvest would make milling grade, down from 71% last year, being re-echoed around the market.

"We also had the Canadian crop estimate yesterday which was less than expected, and there are forecasts for rain in the northern US, which will further delay the spring wheat harvest," Don Roose, president at broker US Commodities, said.

"Rainfalls back in the northwest have not been so favourable to the spring wheat crop and are raising quality and possibly quantity concerns for the US and Canadian spring wheat crop," Benson Quinn Commodities said.

"Rains delay maturation of the crop with localised flooding raising concern some pockets may not get harvested."

Feed vs milling

Such fears were viewed as encouraging short-covering, with a caution by US Wheat Associates over unusually high levels of vomitoxin in US soft red winter wheat also a potential cause of a squeeze on quality supplies.

Vomitoxin is a toxic residue, which can render wheat unfit even for feed, left over from fungal infections encouraged by damp conditions.

Spring wheat for September added 2.4% to $6.30 ¼ a bushel in Minneapolis, supported by the northern US harvest slowdown.

However, in London, feed wheat added a more modest 1.2% to £122.25 a tonne for November delivery, with weaker supplies of milling wheat meaning more choice for livestock rations.

'On fire'

As has been the pattern with rallies on Ukraine-Russia concerns, corn got a lift too, adding 1.0% to $3.72 ¾ a bushel for December delivery.

The grain also received support from an estimate by China's CNGOIC crop bureau that drought had cost the country some 3.5m tonnes of corn - small beer when compared with its last crop estimate of 222.1m tonnes, but seen as potentially opening the door to bigger loss figures.

But soybeans outperformed again, lifted by the strong US cash market, as crushers faced with tight supplies of the oilseed attempt to keep pipelines full, in the face of strong demand for soymeal.

"September soybean futures are on fire," Mr Roose said, noting too that expiry of the contract is close, a process which can encourage price volatility as investors quit positions.

Soaring prices

Richard Feltes at RJ O'Brien talked of "history-making record old crop soybean basis" as crushers attempt to lure out the last remaining supplies from the 2013 harvest.

Soybean crushers are "down to a week or less of inventory, as hand-to-mouth end users scramble to cover September needs", with soymeal demand being encouraged high margins in pork and poultry sectors.

The September soybean contract soared 2.8% to $11.68 a bushel, helping the new crop November lot gain 0.7% to $10.45 ½ a bushel.

Soymeal itself soared 5.9% to $438.10 a short ton for September, pulling the December lot up 1.9% to $353.20 a short ton.

Coffee cools

Among soft commodities, arabica coffee eased despite some fresh concerns over the flowering of Brazilian trees (ahead of the 2015 harvest) which should be peaking next month.

In recent weeks, unusual rains have been a concern in encouraging premature blossoms, which are likely to abort, besides at risk of getting entangled in harvesters in areas which have not finished reaping the 2014 crop.

Now, irregular rains are in the forecast, according to Somar, a factor which may "impair the fixation of the blossom", Brazil's Conselho Nacional do Café producers' said.

Arabica coffee for December dropped 1.2% to 187.35 cents a pound.

'More than enough sugar'

However, raw sugar dropped even further, by 2.2% to 15.64 cents a pound for October, largely as a technical reaction after the contract failed to break back above the 16 cents-a-pound mark for long, viewed as a sign of weak buying pressure.

Jack Scoville at Price Futures Group also noted that talk of a drop in Brazilian production expected soon, as drought damage causes an early finish to the cane harvest, is being countered by ideas of large world inventories.

There is "also talk that there will be more than enough sugar around the world market to keep users supplied even if there is a short crop next year", he said.

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Wheat Gains Most in 2 Weeks as Canada Crop Reduces Supply

Wheat futures in Chicago rose the most in two weeks on speculation that a global grain surplus will be smaller than forecast, after Canada reported a drop in output and rains delayed the U.S. harvest.

Canada, the world’s second-largest exporter, will harvest 26 percent less this year, the government reported yesterday. As much as 6 inches (15 centimeters) of rain forecast in the northern U.S. and parts of Canada through the weekend may cause minor crop losses and delay harvesting, Commodity Weather Group said in an emailed report. The U.S. is the biggest exporter.

“Farmers have been chomping at the bit to get rolling,” Eugene Graner, president of Heartland Investor Services Inc. in Bismarck, North Dakota, said in a telephone interview. “We’re having some issues with a lot of rains. It’s going to be that way all week.”

Wheat futures for December delivery rose 2 percent to $5.665 a bushel at 11:22 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade, heading for the biggest gain since Aug. 6. Prices earlier touched $5.6775, the highest since Aug. 15. Futures tumbled 14 percent in the 12 months through yesterday as global production was forecast to climb. Spring-wheat futures on the Minneapolis Grain Exchange gained as much as 2.5 percent to $6.385 a bushel, the highest since Aug. 8.

World wheat production may rise to a record 716.09 million metric tons in the 2014-2015 marketing year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said Aug. 12.

Canadian production will drop to 27.7 million tons from a record 37.5 million in 2013, Statistics Canada said yesterday. Analysts in a Bloomberg survey expected 29.1 million. As of Aug. 17, farmers had collected 17 percent of the U.S. spring-wheat crop, less than the five-year average of 33 percent for that date, the USDA said. Quality concerns also loom for the crop in Europe after heavy rains.

Soybean futures for November delivery rose 0.4 percent to $10.4225 a bushel on the CBOT. Corn futures for delivery in December increased 0.7 percent to $3.715 a bushel. 

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Chinese Sow Herd Lowest for Four Years

Chinese Sow Herd Lowest for Four Years | Grain du Coteau : News ( corn maize ethanol DDG soybean soymeal wheat livestock beef pigs canadian dollar) | Scoop.it

CHINA - Looking at the size of the breakdown of the inventory for June, 2014, the information from the Chinese Ministry of Agriculture indicates a 428.18 million on-farm inventory and a 45.94 million sow herd. writes Ron Lane, Senior Consultant for Genesus China.

 The 428.18 million on farm inventory is up 0.2 per cent from last month and down 4.8 per cent from June, 2013.

The sow herd is down 1.0 per cent from last month and is down 8.2 per cent from one year ago (June, 2013). Again in June, another 464,000 sows plus another 470,000 sows in May along with the 1.05 million sows from April were eliminated during the past three months. The current sow inventory is the lowest level in four years.

It is expected that there will be more sows lost in July. (July, 2014 report has just been released- farm inventory (429.46 million is up 0.3 per cent from June and down 5.4 per cent from July, 2013.

The sow herd is down 1.2 per cent from last month (now at 45.39 million sows) and is down 9.1 per cent from one year ago (July, 2013). Another 550,000 sows went to market in July, 2014. The 9.1 per cent loss in sow numbers is about 4.1 million sows-maybe about two-thirds (2/3s) of the total number of sows in the USA-number two in the world for sow numbers.

Hog production capacity has significantly been adjusted with the main cause being the loss of farm households. Despite the recent recovery of the market price for live pigs, several farm households are still in financial difficulty.

MOA states that since the peak high of November 2013, the on farm inventory has dropped 8.1 per cent or about 35.5 million pigs… more than Canada’s total production for one year. Factors such as disease, cold weather and/or home consumption (mainly backyard farms) for Spring Festival, have all affected the total on farm inventory. Recently, the low prices have been sending sows to market as small farmers are lowering the sow herd size or are totally quitting the business.

The large sell off of sows for the past 11 months will cause a shortage of market pigs by the end of this year and thus a large increase in market pig and pork prices. This could have a large effect on the Consumer Price Index-something the national government does not like to see happen.

Releasing national government frozen pork stock reserves will only soften the price increase over a short period of time. Low market pig numbers means higher prices and higher CPI.

The Consumer Price Index (CPI) continues to be quite interesting for the national government.

Previously, when the pork prices were gaining, this rapid increase in pork, gained the attention of the national government as it greatly affects the CPI. The CPI is made up of about 30 per cent food found in the consumers’ basket. Pork is estimated to be about 1/3 of the food portion of the basket or in other words, about 10 per cent of CPI as a whole. CPI increased to 102.30 Index Points in June (2.3 per cent) down by 0.2 per cent from May (102.50 index points in May and 101.80 Index Points in April).

For the first six months of 2014, the CPI has averaged 2.3 per cent. The price of pork in China fell 7.2 per cent, contributing to a decline in the April CPI. As the prices increased in May, the CPI increased by 0.7 per cent.

Currently, the pork prices are keeping the CPI lower, but a substantial increase, likely towards the end of this year, will cause national government concern. As a measure, when pig prices increase, CPI should increase.

Profit margins are still showing losses from last month (still substantial losses). Recently, the farrow to finish farm was losing 177 RMB/ market pig ($ 28.80 USD/market pig) for an average for the month of June On 28 May, the farrow to finish farm was losing 84 to 90 RMB/head ($13.67 to $14.64 USD/market pig) and on 11 April, a farrow to finish operation was losing 357 RMB/head ($ 58.09 US/ market pig).

Some analysts calculate that the loss for some newer, more financially leveraged farms is even higher. Compared to 15 January, it was reported that profits for a farrow to finish operation was 49.06 RMB/market pig ($ 7.98 USD/market pig).

  • June Monthly Averages: market pig price was 12.80 RMB/kg ($ 2.08 USD/kg-$ 0.94 USD/lb.); pork price was 20.32 RMB/kg ($ 3.31 USD/kg-$ 1.50 USD/lb.) and piglet prices were 24.94 RMB/kg ($ 4.06 USD/kg-$1.84 USD/lb.).
  • 15 August the market pig price ranged from a low of 14.4 RMB to a high of 15.8 RMB/kg ($ 2.34USD/kg to $ 2.57 USD/kg-$ 1.06USD/lb to $ 1.17USD/lb.)
  • Last week, 15 August, the pig to grain ratio was 5.58:1(up 5.9 per cent from 18 July when the pig to grain ratio was 5.25:1). On 12 June, the pig to grain ratio was 5.09:1. On 28 May, the pig to grain ratio was 5.43:1, up 2.27 per cent from the week before. On 11 April, the pig to grain ratio was 4.4:1; on 20 February, the pig to grain ratio was 5.49:1; and on 15 January, 2014, the pig to grain ratio was 6.18:1. This fell from 6.52:1 from the week before (8 January). At the end of October, 2013 the pig to grain price ratio was 6.59:1. For most weeks this year, the pig to grain ratio has been below the traditional breakeven point of 6.00:1.
  • The WH Group, the largest pork producer in the world, had removed their IPO plans from the Hong Kong stock market this past Spring. The Group, formerly known as Shuanghui and who bought Smithfield Foods last year, re-posted the IPO and was able to raise 2.05 billion USD, which is about 50 per cent less than what they had hoped to raise with the initial IPO in April. WH Group sold 2.57 billion shares at a fixed opening price of $ 0.79 USD (about 4.86 RMB/share). Shares were up 6.5 per cent on the first day of trading.
  • For 11 consecutive months, the sow numbers declined to the July level of 45.4 million head (a four year low). With the decline in the number of sows, then the supply of piglets will be a tight balance for the second half of 2014 (416.25 million piglets-a 7 per cent decrease compared to second half of 2013. The full year expected piglet supply is 825.91 million head-down 3.5 per cent compared to the full year in 2013. The first half of 2015 is expected to continue to have a decline in piglet numbers.
  • According to the provincial animal health monitoring and early warning center for the 480 pig farmers that are monitored, the center shows that the average loss for the first half of the year for a slaughter pig to be 139 RMB ( $22.61 USD/market pig). The cost to produce a piglet at birth (sow feed, labour, vaccines, etc.) is about 300 RMB/piglet ($ 48.81/piglet). Raising the piglet to about a weight of nine kilograms (about 20 pounds), will cost about 100 RMB more ($ 16.27USD/piglet). Total cost to nine kilograms (20 pounds) is about 400 RMB ($ 65.08 USD/piglet). However, the sale price is only 320 RMB ($ 52.07 USD/piglet) an 80 RMB ($ 13.02 USD) loss for the first six months of 2014.
  • A recent survey from Guangdong province—near Hong Kong, indicates some current cost of production for the first half of 2014. The average cost to produce a grower to finish market pig for slaughter is 1,563.6 RMB ($ 254.40USD/market pig). Both feed costs and labour costs are up from last year. The average cost for feed is 919 RMB/market pig ($ 149.53 USD) and the price of labour is 119.5 RMB ($ 19.44 USD). Labour is up 16.9 RMB ($ 2.75 USD or 16.5 per cent from last year). The veterinary charges were 22.2 RMB ($3.61 USD) and the cost for the grower pig was 455.1 RMB ($ 74.05 USD) for the 18.3 Kgs.-40.3 lbs. pig. The average grower pig price is down 19.9 RMB ($ 3.24 USD) from last year. Average slaughter price was 1503.6RMB ($244.64 USD) with an average profit loss of 60 RMB ($ 9.76 USD) per market pig. Interesting note, when they break down the scale of farms and losses, the following trend was noted: large scale farms lost 103.6 RMB ($16.86 USD); medium scale farms lost 118.4 RMB ($ 19.26 USD) and small scale lost the least at 8.3 RMB ($ 1.35 USD). Large scale farms probably have some feed price advantage and small scale farms may not state actual labour charges.
  • For 2014, the Ministry of Financial has provided 1.2 billion RMB ($195.2 million USD) to purchase breeding livestock and frozen semen directly to the farmers. Breeding pigs received 661 million RMB ($ 107.5 millionUSD)
- See more at: http://www.themeatsite.com/meatnews/25516/chinese-sow-herd-lowest-for-four-years#sthash.HEnEvWw0.dpuf
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Fertilizer Vs. Seed, Which One Gives Crop Producers The Most Economic Value?

Summary
  • Global population growth guarantees a constant growth in demand for food.
  • Since there is a finite amount of arable land, where will food growth come from?
  • How do seed and fertilizer provide economic value versus help mitigate risk.

The narrative that both fertilizer and seed companies as well as food commodity bulls have discussed since the turn of the 21st century is that population growth would drive the demand for food. It is hard to argue that fact. However, what will drive increases in supply? Will it be land, fertilizer, or seeds? Whatever the answer is, it is a fair bet that companies like Monsanto (NYSE:MON), Mosaic (NYSE:MOS), Potash Corp. (NYSE:POT), and CF Industries (NYSE:CF) will likely be competing to fill those needs. The pertinent question is which element provides farmers with economic value while guarding against risk. Knowing that crop production requires some combination of all three along with some favorable weather, let us look at each element individually before we decide.

Land

Clearly, there is a finite amount of arable land to grow crops on. Sometimes, during a period of abnormally high prices for one or more crops previously unused or unprofitable land is re-purposed. For example, this year saw a 5.5 million increase in total acres planted for wheat, feed grains, soybeans, cotton, and rice in the US, mostly due to an 8.3 million acre increase in soybean planting that was only partly offset by a 4.7 million acre decline in corn planting.


As illustrated in figure 1, cotton, rice, and wheat all had small increases that further reduced the number of corn acres converted to soybeans. Even during periods of abnormally high pricing, it is difficult to find more land to plant on. Thus, to increase food supplies one must increase the yields those lands produce.

Fertilizer

Fertilizer provides plants with the essential nutrients they need to grow. The producer controls the timing of the fertilizer application, designed to maximize yields. Fertilizer use does increase yields. However, fertilizer does not give protection against a producers two main risks, weather and insects.

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Glencore credits Canada for 'striking' ag results

GlencoreXstrata revealed hopes of holding on to its "striking" improvement in agriculture despite acknowledging a one-off boost from last year's bumper Canadian grains harvests.

The copper-to-cane giant - unveiling an 8.1% rise to $2.01bn in earnings for the first half of 2014, and a share buyback of up to $1bn - highlighted the performance of its, relatively small, agriculture division in the improved performance.

The division recovered from an operating loss of $20m in the first half of 2013 to an operating profit of $473m, led by an improvement in the crop marketing business, which focused on more lucrative business.

Profits in crop marketing jumped from $15m to $473m, overtaking the group's takings from energy trading.

This rise came despite a 25% drop in revenues, a reflection of lower crop prices and lower oilseed and grain volumes, down 13% and 11% respectively - although not, it appears, in Canada, where the group bought grain handler Viterra two years ago.

'Striking performance'

"The performance of agriculture was striking," Ivan Glasenberg, the GlencoreXstrata chief executive, said flagging the performance of Viterra in what was a "challenging price environment in our core commodities of barley, canola and wheat".

Viterra, which also came with an Australian business, the former ABB, made a "robust contribution" achieved a on the back of a record crop in Canada and an above-average crop in South Australia," the group said

Chris Mahoney, the group's head of agricultural products, said that "Canada was good, primarily because of the large crop in Canada which was a crop record by about 25% larger than the previous crop".

Canada achieved record canola and wheat harvests last year, of 17.96m tonnes and 37.53m tonnes respectively, supporting bumper 2013-14 exports of 8.1m tonnes for the oilseed and 21.55m tonnes for the grain, on farm ministry estimates.

'Good demand growth'

Mr Mahoney acknowledged that the "Canadian situation probably is a little bit exceptional", with harvests this year expected to prove less bountiful.

Statistics Canada will tomorrow unveil fresh crop estimates expected at 28.5m tonnes for wheat,  although up from a forecast of 27.74m tonnes in July, and 14.5m tonnes for canola, nudged up from 14.45m tonnes.

However, he also flagged improved performances in soft seed processing in Europe, and soybean crushing in Argentina.

"In fact, the trading generally was better in the first half, particularly the oil seed trading," he told investors.

Looking ahead, "we still have good demand growth.... The crush margin situation looks okay - I would say it looks good in South America.

"I don't know that the earnings will come in the same way that they came in the first half from the same bits of the division, but without making a hard and fast prediction, I would say it looks okay.

"And longer term, the outlook I think is pretty positive for the industry."

Sugar improvement

In oilseed crushing, volumes soared 73% to 2.68m tonnes, a reflection of an improved performance at the Timbues plant in Argentina, and of GlencoreXstrata raising from 33% to 50% its stake in the operation.

The group also highlighted a 42% rise to 723,000 tonnes in sugar cane processed at its Brazilian mill, Rio Vermelho, a reflection of an "ongoing expansion" programme.

The group also revealed a 31% drop to 232,000 tonnes in volumes from its farming operations, which stretch from Australia to the former Soviet Union, but failed to comment on the decline.

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grains, sugar attempt firm finish to week

Among all the downbeat talk on prospects for corn and soybeanprospects, there are a few factors offering bulls hopes of prices, while already through the floor, not disappearing into the basement.

Among them are China's drought?

It is a sensitive topic for agricultural commodity markets, given the country's huge population, meaning that any shortfall in domestic production could have a large impact on import needs.

Corn watchers have a particular interest in Chinese output. The country has, for years, been heralded as a huge importer of the grain, but managed to keep output growing enough to meet largely its needs, if only by curtailing industrial use too.

(The Pro Exporter meeting this week actually pegged ethanol exports as the next source of demand growth for US corn, foreseeing the country's output of the biofuel at 16.25bn barrels in 2023, compared with the 14.1bn barrels expected to be manufactured this year.)

CNGOIC estimate

The official Chinese CNGOIC think tank on Friday pegged the forecast corn losses of 3.5m tonnes to dryness in the big two north eastern producing provinces, up from a previous estimate of 1m tonnes.

That is not actually a huge figure in the scheme of things, with the country sitting on huge inventories.

But if the drought gets worse – although rains are actually on the cards – then, well, it is something the market is keeping an eye on.

Sudden death syndrome

For soybeans, an emerging issue is talk of the spread of sudden death syndrome, a fungal disease which, while not generally quite as serious as its name, can bring large yield reductions, and is seen as being a greater risk in years with wet and cold planting seasons, and with strong summer rains.

Like, for the US, 2014.

"It is interesting the blogs and tweets are starting to come alive this week with sudden death syndrome issues in soybeans," said Mike Mawdsley at Market 1.

"We need to keep our ears perked to this story should it become a bigger problem."

The University of Tennessee, for instance, has recorded outbreaks in its home state, saying that the "cool, wet season Tennessee has experienced, similar to last season, has been conducive for the disease to develop in susceptible varieties".

Tour results

This is not a recipe for a big rebound in prices.

And, indeed, the market will get a reminder of huge US crop prospects later today when ProFarmer unveils the final results of its Midwest crop tour.

The overnight in its full-state estimate for Iowa (the top corn and soybean growing state) pegged the corn yield at 178.75 bushels per acre, up from the tour average last year of 171.94 bushels per acre.

For Minnesota, the corn yield was estimated at 170.76 bushels per acre, down from 181.09 bushels per acre, last year, although this state has been seen among the few blemishes on the good picture for US production.

For soybeans, the Iowa pod count was estimated at 1,173.59 pods per square yard (3 feet by 3 feet), up from 927.30 last year, with the Minnesota figure at 1,031.54 pods per square yard, up from 869.42 last year.

'It gets hard to be short'

Still, the likes of soybean disease and Chinese drought, besides the threat yet of US crop damage should an early frost occur, have offered bulls some hope for price resilience setting in.

And indeed corn for December added 0.3% to $3.70 a bushel in Chicago as of 09:40 UK time (03:40 Chicago time), managing thus far a ninth successive session without setting a contract low, which may not sound much, but is quite a feat after its tumble from May to mid-July.

"The market feels comfortable near the mid-point of the range it has been in for the last month," said Brian Henry at Benson Quinn Commodities.

"If you can't make money being short, it gets hard to be short," he said, adding that "one could argue that the technicals don't indicate heavy buying, but they really aren't telling folks to offer into lower trade either".

Soybeans gain

For soybeans, headway has proved harder to come by with the passing of August as it the key month for the US crop, bringing pod-setting, which appears to be occurring without too much in the way of weather threat.

That is allowing investors to withdraw risk premium.

Still, with soybeans getting extra help from tight near-term supplies, which is sending the US cash market soaring, September soybeans added 1.2% to $11.49 ½ a bushel, helping the benchmark, new crop November contract add 0.4% to $10.42 a bushel.

It is an extra help that Indian monsoon rains have proven poor of the last week, running 25% below average, and questioning ideas of a better performance in the second half of the rainy season, which ends next month.

'Selling crescendo'

The complex managed to ignore the poor performance, elsewhere in the oilseeds complex, of palm oil, which dropped a further 1.0% to 2,018 ringgit a tonne in Kuala Lumpur and setting a fresh near-five-year low.

Morgan Stanley was the latest in a series of commentators to issue a price forecast for the vegetable oil, agreeing broadly with Sipef's assessment on Thursday.

"Whilst the recent collapse in pricing has the feel of a selling crescendo as producers appear to be liquidating stocks built in the second quarter at distressed pricing, we believe pricing is unlikely to stage a meaningful recovery before the fourth quarter," the bank said.

Spring wheat outperforms

Back in the US, wheat extended its gains of the last session, supported by weaker-than-expected Canadian outlook and quality concerns now over the US spring wheat crop.

Indeed, Minneapolis spring wheat outperformed, adding 0.7% to %6.20 a bushel for September delivery.

That reduced below 5 cents its discount to Kansas City hard red winter wheat for September, which added 0.4% to $6.24 ½ a bushel.

Chicago soft red winter wheat gained 0.4% to $5.48 ½ a bushel.

Mixed softs

Among soft commodities, raw sugar managed to extend its gains, adding 0.2% to 16.02 cents a pound for October delivery, despite India raising its import duty to 25%, from 15%, in a move to protect the interest of local mills.

That said, sugar traders have not been relying on selling sugar into India, which has had more than enough domestic production to cover its needs of about 23m tonnes a year.

Arabica coffee for December edged 0.4% lower to 188.85 cents a pound.

Costa Rica, where plantations are recovering from coffee rust, forecast a 4.5% rise to 1.56m bags in its production in 2014-15.

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Frank Backx Aug 22, 2014 -A.M. Grain Comment

Aug 22, 2014 -A.M. Comment

Dec C 3.70 +1 Nov S 10.43 +5 Sep W 5.50 +3. A touch firmer, China C price hits new record high. Will it lead to more imports? Ont C prod'n will be down sharply, S up sharply. CD -9

Sincerely,

Frank Backx
HDC Forest Location Manager

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Canada’s Dollar Approaches Four-Month Low as Inflation Slows

The Canadian dollar traded at an almost four-month low after a government report showed the inflation rate slowed for the first time in five months in July.

The currency has weakened this week versus its U.S. counterpart amid speculation the Federal Reserve is moving closer to increasing interest rates next year than the Bank of Canada. The consumer price index rose 2.1 percent in July from a year ago following June’s 2.4 percent pace, Statistics Canada said today. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg News forecast a 2.2 percent pace, according to the median of 20 responses.

“Initially we had a weakening in the Canadian dollar as everyone’s eyes went to CPI, which was softer than expected, so that provides some more leeway for the Bank of Canada to maintain its neutral tone,” said Camilla Sutton, head of currency strategy at Bank of Nova Scotia, by telephone from Toronto.

The loonie, as the Canadian dollar is known for the image of the aquatic bird on the C$1 coin, fell less than 0.1 percent to C$1.0945 per U.S. dollar, at 9:09 a.m. in Toronto. The currency weakened to as low as C$1.0980, approaching the low of C1.0986 reached on Aug. 6, the least since May.

Bank of Canada Governor Stephen Poloz, who has kept the central bank’s benchmark rate on overnight loans between commercial banks unchanged at 1 percent since taking the post last year, has been saying that quickening inflation in recent months was caused by one-time gains in energy and import prices, not changes in economic fundamentals, hinting it’s not a concern for policy makers. Canada’s inflation rate had been accelerating since touching a 2014 low of 1.1 percent in February.

Rate Speculation

Canadian retail sales rose 1.1 percent in June, a gain that exceeded all economist forecasts, a separate report showed. Sales increased to C$42.6 billion ($38.9 billion), Statistics Canada said. Economists forecast a 0.3 percent gain.

The central bank remained neutral last month on whether the next interest-rate move will be up or down. It has kept borrowing costs unchanged since 2010 to support the economy. Policy makers’ monetary-policy report cut the forecasts they made in April for Canada’s growth this year to 2.2 percent from 2.3 percent.

The Canadian dollar slumped in March to C$1.1279, the weakest level since July 2009, after Poloz said he couldn’t rule out a rate cut to head off the risk that low inflation would slip into deflation. It rebounded as consumer prices increased, reaching C

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Corn Futures Rise on Speculation U.S. Yields Won’t Top Estimate

Corn futures rose in Chicago on speculation that yields will be in line with government estimates in the U.S., the world’s biggest grower.

Yields in eastern Iowa and southern Minnesota have fallen from 2013, preliminary samples taken today on the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour show. National yields probably won’t top 170 bushels an acre, within market expectations, Societe Generale analyst Christopher Narayanan said yesterday on the tour. The U.S. Department of Agriculture estimated yields at 167.4 on Aug. 12.

“The big question I think is whether or not the crop is appreciably bigger than the USDA forecast last week,” Bryce Knorr, a Chicago-based senior grain market analyst for Farm Futures magazine, said in a telephone interview. “The dry area of eastern Iowa hasn’t picked up any rain out of this week’s storms. We really have just gotten stuck in a consolidation pattern.”

Corn futures for December delivery rose 0.3 percent to $3.685 a bushel at 11:34 a.m. on the Chicago Board of Trade. Trading was 24 percent above the 100-day average for this time of day, data compiled by Bloomberg show.

Iowa was the largest U.S. producing state last year, while Minnesota was fourth, USDA data show.

Soybean futures for November delivery rose 0.5 percent to $10.4275 a bushel.

Wheat futures for December delivery climbed 1.2 percent to $5.565 a bushel. 

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China tightens checks on U.S. sorghum imports -traders

* China stepping up checks on U.S. sorghum cargoes -traders

* Could slash imports of the corn-substitute

* Has already rejected more than 1 mln T of U.S. corn

By Niu Shuping and Dominique Patton

BEIJING, Aug 21 (Reuters) - Chinese authorities are stepping up checks on U.S. cargoes of sorghum, traders said, potentially curbing shipments from the world's largest exporter of the corn-substitute.

Four traders with direct knowledge of the matter said the country's quarantine office last month asked local authorities to tighten checks of sorghum and barley, looking for impurities such as pesticide residues and heavy metals.

A quarantine bureau spokesman declined to make immediate comment.

The move comes after China has already rejected more than 1 million tonnes of U.S. corn due to the presence of genetically modified strain that has not been approved by Beijing.

Chinese feed mills have increasingly been turning to U.S. sorghum as a cheap substitute for domestic corn <0#DCC:>, which has seen prices inflated as Beijing supports the country's rural population.

"There are worries in the market, which should reduce imports of sorghum in later months," said Zhang Yan, an analyst at Shanghai JC Intelligence Co. Ltd (JCI).

JCI cut its forecast for sorghum imports to 1.6 million tonnes for the 2014/15 marketing year, down from 3.9 million tonnes predicted earlier.

China is the world's largest importer of U.S. sorghum, with its feed mills buying almost all their sorghum from the country.

"Shipments already booked or on the way to China may have no problem, but bookings after the notice may face trouble," said another industry source, who declined to be named as he is not authorised to speak with media.

"Some of the major buyers have already been informed of strict checks," said the source.

Sorghum is traditionally used to make alcohol in China but use in animal feed surged last year as the industry sought to diversify ingredient supplies and replace expensive domestic corn.

Some big buyers contacted by Reuters said they were adopting a 'wait-and-see' approach to any further sorghum purchases.

"It is still unclear if quarantine authorities are testing every shipment. They could really make things go crazy as they did for DDGS," said a trader with a large buyer in south China.

China has stopped issuing import permits and demands certification that imported distillers' grains (DDGs), a by-product of corn-based ethanol, do not contain the MIR 162 GMO strain.

Another large buyer in the southern province of Guangdong said it had stopped placing new orders but declined to say why.

China's quarantine authority has also asked ports to step up screening of alfalfa imports this month after cargoes of hay from three U.S. suppliers were found to contain unapproved GMO varieties, according to a notice on a government website.

U.S. alfalfa imports have seen rapid growth in recent years to meet demand from China's fast expanding dairy herd.

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McCain vend ses pizzas surgelées à Dr Oetker

McCain vend ses pizzas surgelées à Dr Oetker | Grain du Coteau : News ( corn maize ethanol DDG soybean soymeal wheat livestock beef pigs canadian dollar) | Scoop.it

McCain Foods a indiqué mercredi avoir signé un accord au sujet de la vente de ses activités nord-américaines de pizzas surgelées à Dr Oetker GmbH.

Les détails financiers de l'entente n'ont pas été dévoilés immédiatement.

L'accord porte sur la marque Ellio's aux États-Unis et comprend une licence de deux ans pour l'utilisation de la marque McCain au Canada.

Selon McCain, le secteur de la pizza ne représente qu'une petite portion de ses activités nord-américaines et sa vente permettra à l'entreprise de se concentrer sur d'autres secteurs.

La transaction comprend les activités de Grand Falls, au Nouveau-Brunswick, et de Lodi, au New Jersey. Les employés de McCain à ces deux installations se verront offrir un emploi chez Dr Oetker, a précisé McCain.

L'entente est assujettie à l'approbation des autorités réglementaires canadiennes.

McCain Foods a annoncé, plus tôt en août, la fermeture d'une usine de patates frites à l'Île-du-Prince-Édouard à la fin octobre, une décision qui entraînera la perte de 121 emplois.

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Frank Backx Aug 22, 2014 - Closing Grain Comment

Frank Backx Aug 22, 2014 - Closing Grain Comment | Grain du Coteau : News ( corn maize ethanol DDG soybean soymeal wheat livestock beef pigs canadian dollar) | Scoop.it

Aug 22, 2014 - Closing Comment

 

Dec C 3.72 +3 Nov S  10.43 +5 Sep W 5.51 +5. For the week, new CSW -5-8-1. Hotter weather coming finally. CD +3, 91.33 -.41 for the week. Click link to see crude oil chart, down 13% in 2 months.


Sincerely,

Frank Backx
HDC Forest Location Manager 
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Low crop prices dent US farm values, tractor sales

Farmland prices fell in the US for a ninth successive month, amid worsening agriculture sector sentiment which has sent conditions in the farm machinery market to the worst in at least nine years.

An index compiled by Creighton University of farmland prices major US farming states such as Illinois, Iowa and Kansas came in at 41.4 for this month, below the 48.3 points recorded for July, and the 50.0 mark that indicates a neutral market.

The deterioration, which included particularly weak readings for the western Midwest states of Nebraska and South Dakota, reflected the drop in grain prices which has curtailed farm profitability.

"Agriculture commodity prices have plummeted for crop farmers in our region and are expected to move even lower in the months ahead," said Ernie Goss, the Creighton University economics professor in charge of the survey.

"Much weaker crop prices are taking the air out of agriculture land prices."

'Lowest reading we have recorded'

The drop in crop values is also having a broader impact on the rural US economy, besides the farm equipment market which saw an index reading of 25.5, a record low, below the "very weak" reading of 33.4 for July.

"This is lowest reading that we have recorded for the equipment index since we began the monthly survey in 2006," Professor Goss said.

"The rapid decline in agriculture commodity prices is causing farmers to become more cautious in their equipment purchase."

Industry downturn

The finding follows a series of downbeat comments from farm equipment groups over the sector, with Deere & Co last week lowering forecasts for full-year sales and earnings, following a cut to profits guidance last month by rival Agco, the maker of Massey Ferguson tractors.

 Other groups cautioning over the sector include equipment dealer Titan Machinery, irrigator maker Lindsay Corp and AgJunction, a maker of satellite-based products, which said that "These business cycles are typical of the industry in which we operate and are being felt by both our customers and competitors".

Data from the Association of Equipment Manufacturer industry group show the decline affecting in particular larger machinery, favoured by crop farmers, with US sales of four wheel drive tractors down 11.0% in the first seven months of 2014, with combine volumes dropping 15.2%.

Sales of smaller tractors have grown by 3.3%, supported by the boost lower crop prices have given to livestock producers, major buyers of less powerful machinery.

'Becoming more pessimistic'

Creighton said that its research, drawn from a survey of lenders, had indicated expectations of further weakness to come in the agricultural economy.

"With record crop supplies anticipated by analysts, I expect readings to move even lower in the months ahead," Professor Goss said.

Bank chief executives interviewed by the bank expect land prices to fall by 4.8% over the next 12 months, an increase from a rate of decline of 3.2% expected at the start of the year.

"Clearly, bankers are becoming more pessimistic regarding the trend in farmland prices," he said.

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Canola’s Premium Over Soybeans Set to Climb Amid Tighter Supply

A smaller Canadian canola crop signals that the oilseed’s premium to U.S. soybeans is poised to widen, according to Wild Oats Grain Market Advisory.

Canola futures for November settlement yesterday settled at a premium near C$2.25 ($2.06) a metric ton above soybeans for the same delivery month. The spread may widen to C$10 as early as December, John Duvenaud, publisher of Wild Oats Grain Market Advisory in Winnipeg, Manitoba, said in an e-mail.

Production in Canada, the world’s largest canola grower, is set to drop 23 percent to 13.9 million tons, the government said yesterday. U.S. farmers will harvest a record 3.816 billion bushels of soybeans this year, the Department of Agriculture said Aug. 12. In 2014, canola futures slid 6.7 percent through yesterday on ICE Futures Canada, while soybeans traded in Chicago tumbled 20 percent.

“There’s just not enough supply now to maintain the level of exports we had along with the domestic crush” for canola, Duvenaud said on a conference call with reporters yesterday. “The domestic crush is not going to slow down, so the exports are going to have to slow down.”

Oilseed processors crush canola and soybeans to make cooking oil and animal feed. 

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Too Much Corn With Nowhere to Go as U.S. Sees Record Crop

Too Much Corn With Nowhere to Go as U.S. Sees Record Crop | Grain du Coteau : News ( corn maize ethanol DDG soybean soymeal wheat livestock beef pigs canadian dollar) | Scoop.it

The ripening corn and soybean fields stretch for miles in every direction from Dennis Wentworth’s farm in Downs, Illinois. As he marveled at his best-yielding crops ever, he wondered aloud where the heck he’ll put it all.

“Logistics are going to be a huge problem for everyone,” the 62-year-old grower said, adding that he has invested in boosting output rather than grain bins. When harvesting starts in a few weeks, Wentworth expects his 150-year-old family farm to produce 10 percent more than last year’s record. “There are going to be some big piles of grain on the ground this fall.”

From Ohio to Nebraska, thousands of field inspections this week during the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour show corn output in the U.S., the world’s top producer, could be 1 percent more than a government estimate and soybeans 1.2 percent higher, according to a Bloomberg survey of crop scouts. Months of timely rains and mild weather created ideal growing conditions, leaving ears with more kernels than normal on 10-foot (3-meter) corn stalks and more seed pods on dark, green soy plants.

Prospects of bumper harvests sent Chicago futures tumbling into bear markets last month, two years after a drought eroded output and sparked the highest prices ever. Cheaper grain is bolstering profit for buyers including Tyson Foods Inc. and Archer-Daniels-Midland Co. (ADM), encouraging some cattle producers in the Great Plains to expand herds, and eroding income for farmers who say increased output will make up for some of the slump.


Photographer: Daniel Acker/Bloomberg

Corn grows in a field outside of Wyanet, Illinois. In Illinois, where the U.S.... Read More


Bigger Yields

Corn on the Chicago Board of Trade has tumbled 20 percent since the end of May, touching $3.72 a bushel today, and soybeans are down 30 percent to $10.44 a bushel. The Bloomberg Commodity Index slid 6.2 percent over the same period, while the MSCI All-Country World Index of equities rose 1.8 percent. The Bloomberg Treasury Index gained about 0.6 percent.

Samples in Illinois, Ohio, Indiana and Iowa -- representing 45 percent of forecast U.S. corn output and 41 percent of soybeans -- showed bigger yields than last year, according to inspections on the 22nd annual Pro Farmer crop tour, which ended yesterday. Corn production will be 14.178 billion bushels, compared with 14.032 billion estimated by U.S. Department of Agriculture, according to a survey of 13 tour participants. Soybean output was forecast at 3.861 billion bushels, compared with a USDA estimate of 3.816 billion.

The volunteer scouts on the four-day crop tour drove more than 15,000 miles across seven Midwest states, the biggest growing region, taking random samples by counting the number of kernels on corn ears and pods on soybean plants. Editors of the Pro Farmer newsletter will issue final estimates of U.S. output today, partly based on this week’s measurements.

Ideal Weather

In Illinois, where the USDA predicted that yields will be 188 bushels an acre on average, the tour estimated 197 bushels an acre, up 16 percent from the same areas surveyed last year. In Iowa, preliminary samples showed 1,107 soybean pods per 3 square feet, up 18 percent from last year.

The outlook has improved after months of ideal weather. Through Aug. 16, the majority of the Midwest was slightly dry to abnormally moist, according to a weekly Crop Moisture Index from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Temperatures that have been cooler than normal will remain average or below average through the end of August, the agency forecasts.

The government already predicted record crops on Aug. 12 and a drop in exports that will boost reserves, with corn output rising 0.8 percent and soybean production gaining 16 percent. The USDA will update its forecasts on Sept. 11.

Cutting Bets

Prices have plunged to the lowest since 2010, with soybean futures in Chicago dropping to $10.35 on Aug. 20 and corn slipping to $3.58 on Aug. 12. Money managers have cut their bets on a corn rally by 75 percent since early April, and they have had a net-short holding in soybeans for five straight weeks, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.

Surging crop supplies may exacerbate the squeeze on grain storage and shipping. BNSF Railway Co., owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/B), and Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. struggled with “greater-than normal” demand from shippers of coal, oil and Midwest crops, the USDA said this month in a report.

Combined with inventories left from the 2013 harvest, production of all grains and oilseeds will boost 2014 supply to 26.97 billion bushels, USDA data show. That’s more than the 23.4 billion of storage on farms and grain-company silos as of Dec. 1, the government estimated in a Jan. 10 report.

Roads, Trains

“I don’t know where it will all go this year,” said Richard Guse, a 54-year-old farmer from Waseca, Minnesota, who owns a 1 million-bushel grain elevator that he expanded in the past year by 275,000 bushels. “We need better roads and faster train shipping to keep the grain moving,” Guse said this week while inspecting fields as part of the Pro Farmer crop tour.

With the main harvest still weeks away, there is still time for crops to be damaged by weather, including an early frost. Parts of eastern and northwestern Iowa, the largest corn-growing areas, had less rain than normal over the past two weeks, QT Weather said in a report yesterday.

Not everyone is seeing better yields. Parts of Nebraska, Iowa and South Dakota had samplings that were less than last year. Ron Lampe’s 2,100 acres in Cumminstown, Iowa, were flooded by 20 inches of rain in late June, forcing him to replant more than 10 percent of his corn fields and damaging some of those that survived.

More Rain

Prices already may reflect expectations for a national corn yield of 170 bushels an acre, which would be more than the 167.4 bushels estimated by the USDA earlier this month, said Christopher Narayanan, an analyst at Societe Generale SA in New York who participated in the crop tour.

“I haven’t seen anything or heard anything that might suggest it would be higher,” Narayanan said in an interview yesterday.

For now, there are few risks seen and many farmers are expecting bigger harvests.

More rain is expected through the weekend across the northwestern and eastern Midwest, increasing soil moisture to boost the final stages of soybean growth, Donald Keeney, a meteorologist at MDA Weather Services in Gaithersburg, Maryland, said in an Aug. 20 report. There are no risks yet of frost, Commodity Weather Group said. The weather service yesterday predicted national corn yields will reach 171.5 bushels an acre, 1 percent above a prior estimate.

Best Crop Ever

Wentworth, the Illinois grower, said that instead of adding extra grain bins he is relying on forward-contracting to sell his anticipated avalanche of grain to six grain companies including Cargill Inc. and Andersons Inc. (ANDE) It will take about 538 semi-truck loads, each capable of hauling 80,000 pounds of corn and soybeans, to get his anticipated harvest to buyers. He’s been working to lease trucks and hire temporary drivers to help his two part-time employees keep his grain moving.

Cory Ritter, who farms about 2,000 acres with his father near Blue Mound, Illinois, said they planted more corn this year and expects to harvest 250 bushels an acre, at least 15 percent more than he originally anticipated. Some fields may get as much as 280 bushels, with some plants sprouting second ears and kernels heavier and larger than last year, he said.

“My corn has not been under any weather stress for one day,” said Ritter, 33. “The seed popped out of the ground in four days and started growing right away. Cool temperatures helped during pollination, producing big ears, and rains have come at the perfect time all season. It’s my best crop ever

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Paradis reporte la création d’une SADAQ aux calendes grecques

L’heure est loin d’être venue de créer un organisme d’État, comme une société d’aménagement et de développement agricole du Québec (SADAQ), afin d’encadrer la location et l’acquisition de terres agricoles au Québec, même si leur prix ne cesse d’augmenter.
21 août 2014
par Jean-Charles Gagné - Politique

C’est du moins l’opinion exprimée à la Terre par le ministre québécois de l’Agriculture, Pierre Paradis, lors d’une entrevue de près d’une heure, hier.

« On pourrait envisager une telle intervention de l’État s’il existait un phénomène de marché qui aboutit à déposséder les agriculteurs au profit de spéculateurs, a déclaré le ministre Paradis. Mais les faits ne pointent pas dans cette direction. On ne m’a pas démontré qu’il y avait un vrai problème qui appelle une vraie solution. Cela dit, il faut demeurer très attentif, car les fonds d’investissement sont en dormance et n’ont pas abandonné la partie. »

M. Paradis a réitéré que ce qui s’est passé au Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean, soit l’acquisition de 11 000 acres de terres par le fonds PANGEA, qui « ne correspond pas au modèle d’agriculture que nous voulons ».

M. Paradis a ajouté « qu’une intervention de l’État serait justifiée en cas de situation catastrophique ou extraordinaire comme l’effondrement du prix des terres agricoles, afin d’en maintenir la valeur. Le ministre de l’Agriculture détient déjà les pouvoirs législatifs lui permettant d’intervenir, des pouvoirs qui vont jusqu’à l’acquisition de terres », a-t-il fait valoir.

Autrement, M. Paradis ne voit pas la pertinence « d’ajouter un acheteur de plus sur le marché foncier agricole afin d’acquérir des terres de gré à gré. L’État, qui pour certains a les poches très profondes, devrait se mesurer avec d’autres acheteurs même si son intention n’est pas de faire grimper le prix. » De plus, le ministère devrait ensuite administrer ces terres (location ou vente), aller en appel d’offres, etc., a-t-il indiqué.

Avant de créer un tel organisme, M. Paradis veut voir les effets des amendements apportés à la Loi sur l’acquisition des terres agricoles par des non-résidents, qui sera en vigueur prochainement ainsi que les retombées de l’engagement fiscal pris lors de la récente campagne électorale par les libéraux. « Nous avons promis d’instituer une exemption de gain en capital de 1 M$ pour le vendeur et de permettre aux acheteurs apparentés de verser 15 000 $ par an dans une forme de CELI [compte d’épargne libre d’impôt]. Je continue mon lobbying pour que ces promesses se traduisent dans un futur budget. »

Le ministre a aussi souligné qu’il faut faire preuve de prudence dans ce dossier qui affecte la relève agricole.

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Argentine traders marvel at Illinois corn crop -

Argentine traders marvel at Illinois corn crop - | Grain du Coteau : News ( corn maize ethanol DDG soybean soymeal wheat livestock beef pigs canadian dollar) | Scoop.it
Monday, August 18, 2014 2:00 PM
Three grain traders from Argentina look for full ears at the Bolz farm near Walnut, Ill. Eight grain traders, representing four companies from Cordoba, Rosario and Buenos Aires, visited the U.S. recently. They visited the Chicago Board of Trade and several agricultural facilities in Bureau County, including Marquis Energy and Michlig Grain. The buyers were hosted by Craig Matthews of ABN AMRO Clearing in Chicago.
WALNUT, Ill. — Jacinto Ramos made the sign of holding a phone up to his ear.

Nearby, seven fellow grain traders from Argentina twisted off ears from outer rows of a corn field in rural Walnut.

They stripped the deep green corn husks down and then took turns with their smartphones taking pictures of the developing ear with the pale yellow kernels.

“It looks like a great crop,” Ramos said and then made the phone gesture. “We are calling now to sell our crop.”

Eight grain traders representing four different companies dealing in commodities recently toured several sites in Bureau County to get a look at Illinois agriculture.

The visitors, on a weeklong visit to the U.S., were hosted by Craig Matthews of ABN AMRO Clearing in Chicago, who also is involved in a family farming operation near Walnut.

“We started at the Board of Trade. We’ve visited Marquis Energy in Hennepin and Michlig Grain,” Matthews said.

The eight buyers came from various areas and cities in Argentina, including Buenos Aires, Cordoba and Rosario.

“These guys are buying and selling around 600 million bushels of corn,” Matthews said.

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Canada’s wheat production estimate down 26%

Wheat production in Canada was forecast at 27,704,700 tonnes in 2014, down 26% from a record 37,529,600 tonnes in 2013, Statistics Canada said in its Production of Principal Field Crops report issued Aug. 21.

“The anticipated decrease is the result of 2.6 million fewer harvested acres, and an overall yield decline of 17.6% to 44 bus per acre,” Statistics Canada said of the all wheat production forecast.

Wheat production was forecast to decline 27% in Saskatchewan, 22% in Alberta and 35% in Manitoba.

“At the time of the survey, farmers on the Prairies reported that excessive rains in late June were likely to affect harvestable area,” Statistics Canada said.

Production forecasts were based on a survey of 12,850 Canadian farmers from July 23 to Aug. 4. Final production estimates for 2014 will be released Dec. 4 and are subject to revision for two years.

Production of spring wheat was forecast at 19,972,300 tonnes, down 27% from 27,238,700 tonnes in 2013. Winter wheat production was estimated at 2,779,200 tonnes, down 27% from 3,786,400 tonnes in 2013.

Durum outturn was forecast at 4,953,200 tonnes, down 24% from 6,504,500 tonnes last year.

Canola production in 2014 was forecast at 13,908,000 tonnes, down 23% from 17,960,100 tonnes in 2013. Average canola yield was forecast at 32 bushels per acre, down 20% from last year. Canola outturn was forecast to decline 25% in Saskatchewan, 17% in Alberta and 27% in Manitoba.

Canadian corn production was forecast at 11,430,500 tonnes, down 20% from 14,193,800 tonnes in 2013.

Soybean production was forecast at a record 5,900,700 tonnes in 2014, up 14% from 5,198,400 tonnes in 2013.

Barley production was forecast at 7,163,600 tonnes, down 30% from 10,237,100 tonnes in 2013.

Oats outturn was forecast at 2,639,400 tonnes, down 32% from 3,888,000 tonnes a year ago.

Statistics Canada forecast flaxseed production at 908,100 tonnes, up 28% from 712,300 tonnes in 2013.

Sunflower seed production was seen at 78,200 tonnes, up 51% from 51,900 tonnes last year.

Production of dry field peas was forecast at 3,558,000 tonnes, down 8% from 3,849,300 tonnes in 2013.

The Statistics Canada forecasts were below average trade expectations of 28.5 million tonnes for all wheat, 5.2 million tonnes for durum, 14.5 million tonnes for canola, 7.5 million tonnes for barley and 3 million tonnes for oats.

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Too Much Corn With Nowhere to Go as U.S. Sees Record Crop

Too Much Corn With Nowhere to Go as U.S. Sees Record Crop | Grain du Coteau : News ( corn maize ethanol DDG soybean soymeal wheat livestock beef pigs canadian dollar) | Scoop.it

The ripening corn and soybean fields stretch for miles in every direction from Dennis Wentworth’s farm in Downs,Illinois. As he marveled at his best-yielding crops ever, he wondered aloud where the heck he’ll put it all.

“Logistics are going to be a huge problem for everyone,” the 62-year-old grower said, adding that he has invested in boosting output rather than grain bins. When harvesting starts in a few weeks, Wentworth expects his 150-year-old family farm to produce 10 percent more than last year’s record. “There are going to be some big piles of grain on the ground this fall.”

From Ohio to Nebraska, thousands of field inspections this week during the Pro Farmer Midwest Crop Tour show corn output in the U.S., the world’s top producer, could be 1 percent more than a government estimate and soybeans 1.2 percent higher, according to a Bloomberg survey of crop scouts. Months of timely rains and mild weather created ideal growing conditions, leaving ears with more kernels than normal on 10-foot (3-meter) corn stalks and more seed pods on dark, green soy plants.

Prospects of bumper harvests sent Chicago futures tumbling into bear markets last month, two years after a drought eroded output and sparked the highest prices ever. Cheaper grain is bolstering profit for buyers including Tyson Foods Inc. and Archer-Daniels-Midland Co. (ADM), encouraging some cattle producers in the Great Plains to expand herds, and eroding income for farmers who say increased output will make up for some of the slump.

Bigger Yields

Corn on the Chicago Board of Trade has tumbled 21 percent since the end of May to $3.695 a bushel today, and soybeans are down 30 percent to $10.435 a bushel. The Bloomberg Commodity Index slid 6.1 percent over the same period, while the MSCI All-Country World Index of equities rose 1.8 percent. The Bloomberg Treasury Index gained about 0.6 percent.

Samples in Illinois, OhioIndiana and Iowa -- representing 45 percent of forecast U.S. corn output and 41 percent of soybeans -- showed bigger yields than last year, according to inspections on the 22nd annual Pro Farmer crop tour, which ended yesterday. Corn production will be 14.178 billion bushels, compared with 14.032 billion estimated by U.S. Department of Agriculture, according to a survey of 13 tour participants. Soybean output was forecast at 3.861 billion bushels, compared with a USDA estimate of 3.816 billion.

The volunteer scouts on the four-day crop tour drove more than 15,000 miles across seven Midwest states, the biggest growing region, taking random samples by counting the number of kernels on corn ears and pods on soybean plants. Editors of the Pro Farmer newsletter will issue final estimates of U.S. output today, partly based on this week’s measurements.

Ideal Weather

In Illinois, where the USDA predicted that yields will be 188 bushels an acre on average, the tour estimated 197 bushels an acre, up 16 percent from the same areas surveyed last year. In Iowa, preliminary samples showed 1,107 soybean pods per 3 square feet, up 18 percent from last year.

The outlook has improved after months of ideal weather. Through Aug. 16, the majority of the Midwest was slightly dry to abnormally moist, according to a weekly Crop Moisture Index from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. Temperatures that have been cooler than normal will remain average or below average through the end of August, the agency forecasts.

The government already predicted record crops on Aug. 12 and a drop in exports that will boost reserves, with corn output rising 0.8 percent and soybean production gaining 16 percent. The USDA will update its forecasts on Sept. 11.

Cutting Bets

Prices have plunged to the lowest since 2010, with soybean futures in Chicago dropping to $10.35 on Aug. 20 and corn slipping to $3.58 on Aug. 12. Money managers have cut their bets on a corn rally by 75 percent since early April, and they have had a net-short holding in soybeans for five straight weeks, U.S. Commodity Futures Trading Commission data show.

Surging crop supplies may exacerbate the squeeze on grain storage and shipping. BNSF Railway Co., owned by Warren Buffett’s Berkshire Hathaway Inc. (BRK/B), and Canadian Pacific Railway Ltd. struggled with “greater-than normal” demand from shippers of coal, oil and Midwest crops, the USDA said this month in a report.

Combined with inventories left from the 2013 harvest, production of all grains and oilseeds will boost 2014 supply to 26.97 billion bushels, USDA data show. That’s more than the 23.4 billion of storage on farms and grain-company silos as of Dec. 1, the government estimated in a Jan. 10report.

Roads, Trains

“I don’t know where it will all go this year,” said Richard Guse, a 54-year-old farmer from Waseca,Minnesota, who owns a 1 million-bushel grain elevator that he expanded in the past year by 275,000 bushels. “We need better roads and faster train shipping to keep the grain moving,” Guse said this week while inspecting fields as part of the Pro Farmer crop tour.

With the main harvest still weeks away, there is still time for crops to be damaged by weather, including an early frost. Parts of eastern and northwestern Iowa, the largest corn-growing areas, had less rain than normal over the past two weeks, QT Weather said in a report yesterday.

Not everyone is seeing better yields. Parts of Nebraska, Iowa and South Dakota had samplings that were less than last year. Ron Lampe’s 2,100 acres in Cumminstown, Iowa, were flooded by 20 inches of rain in late June, forcing him to replant more than 10 percent of his corn fields and damaging some of those that survived.

More Rain

Prices already may reflect expectations for a national corn yield of 170 bushels an acre, which would be more than the 167.4 bushels estimated by the USDA earlier this month, said Christopher Narayanan, an analyst at Societe Generale SA in New York who participated in the crop tour.

“I haven’t seen anything or heard anything that might suggest it would be higher,” Narayanan said in an interview yesterday.

For now, there are few risks seen and many farmers are expecting bigger harvests.

More rain is expected through the weekend across the northwestern and eastern Midwest, increasing soil moisture to boost the final stages of soybean growth, Donald Keeney, a meteorologist at MDA Weather Services in Gaithersburg, Maryland, said in an Aug. 20 report. There are no risks yet of frost, Commodity Weather Group said. The weather service yesterday predicted national corn yields will reach 171.5 bushels an acre, 1 percent above a prior estimate.

Best Crop Ever

Wentworth, the Illinois grower, said that instead of adding extra grain bins he is relying on forward-contracting to sell his anticipated avalanche of grain to six grain companies including Cargill Inc. and Andersons Inc. (ANDE) It will take about 538 semi-truck loads, each capable of hauling 80,000 pounds of corn and soybeans, to get his anticipated harvest to buyers. He’s been working to lease trucks and hire temporary drivers to help his two part-time employees keep his grain moving.

Cory Ritter, who farms about 2,000 acres with his father near Blue Mound, Illinois, said they planted more corn this year and expects to harvest 250 bushels an acre, at least 15 percent more than he originally anticipated. Some fields may get as much as 280 bushels, with some plants sprouting second ears and kernels heavier and larger than last year, he said.

“My corn has not been under any weather stress for one day,” said Ritter, 33. “The seed popped out of the ground in four days and started growing right away. Cool temperatures helped during pollination, producing big ears, and rains have come at the perfect time all season. It’s my best crop ever.”

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Deere announces Waterloo layoffs

MOLINE, Ill., Aug. 22, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- Deere & Company (DE) announced today that it will place approximately 460 employees who work in the company's Waterloo, Iowa operations on indefinite layoff in response to current market demand for its products. Deere said employees were informed today of the layoffs, which are effective October 20th. "Layoffs are never easy because we understand the significant impact this action has on our employees, their families, and the community," said Dave DeVault, factory manager. "We very carefully assess our workforce requirements to ensure we make the best possible decision to respond to various market conditions." When Deere announced third quarter earnings on August 13th, the company said it planned to reduce agricultural equipment production for the balance of the year.Deere has emphasized that the company must match the size of its manufacturing workforce with market demand to remain globally competitive. Deere had hired several hundred manufacturing employees in recent years to meet increased demand for products manufactured in its Midwest U.S. factories.
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StatsCan confirms small crops, but reaction subdued

CNS Canada – Canada’s grain and oilseed production will be much smaller than the record crops of 2013-14, according to survey results Statistics Canada released Thursday — but a lack of reaction in futures markets was seen as a sign that the trade is already looking beyond the report.

“All of the numbers came in at the low end of trade expectations, which is bullish on the surface,” said Mike Jubinville, of ProFarmer Canada.

However, the immediate reaction in the futures market was subdued, with ICE Futures Canada canola contracts only up $1-$2 per tonne and U.S. wheat futures narrowly mixed.

“Wheat, durum, canola, barley, oats, peas, lentils… everything with the exception of flax looks bullish in this report,” said Jubinville.

“It should be friendly,” added Chuck Penner of LeftField Commodity Research on the smaller production numbers, but “everybody is more focussed on the (U.S.) soybean crop and what it will do.”

Penner expected the smaller Canadian crops would likely have more of an impact on basis levels than the futures going forward, with Canadian cash bids for wheat, canola, and oats likely showing some strength relative to their U.S. counterparts, and barley performing strongly relative to corn.

StatsCan pegged Canadian canola production for 2014-15 at 13.91 million tonnes, which compares with the record 17.96 million-tonne crop grown in 2013-14. The number was at the low end of trade estimates, but would be in line with historical averages and the crop grown in 2012-13.

The smaller canola production should see ending stocks tighten for 2014-15, and may also reduce the transportation issues over the upcoming season, said Jubinville.

All-wheat production (including durum) was pegged at 27.7 million tonnes by StatsCan, which was at the low end of trade guesses and nearly 10 million tonnes below the 37.53 million grown the previous year. Of that total, durum was estimated at 4.95 million tonnes, which compares with 6.51 million in 2013.

Oats were estimated at 2.64 million tonnes, from 3.89 million the previous year, while barley was pegged at 7.16 million tonnes, well below the 10.24 million harvested in 2013.

Peas, at 3.56 million tonnes, were down slightly from the 3.85 million-tonne crop the previous year, while lentils were up slightly at 1.93 million tonnes, from 1.88 million.

Flaxseed was another of the few major crops to see increased production on the year, with StatsCan forecasting a 908,100-tonne crop. That compares with 712,300 tonnes in 2013-14.

– Phil Franz-Warkentin writes for Commodity News Service Canada, a Winnipeg company specializing in grain and commodity market reporting.

Table: A quick summary of Statistics Canada’s crop production estimates for 2014-15, in millions of tonnes, released Aug. 21, 2014. Pre-report estimates are included for comparison.

StatsCanPre-reportFinal2014-15ideas2013-14Durum4.9535.000 – 6.0006.505All wheat27.70427.800 – 29.90037.530Oats2.6392.760 – 3.1003.888Barley7.1647.500 – 8.20010.237Flax0.9080.800 – 0.9000.712Canola13.90813.800 – 15.00017.960

 

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Canadian Farmers May Harvest Less Wheat and Canola in 2014

Canadian wheat growers will probably reduce output by 26 percent this year and canola production will also fall, the government’s statistics agency said today.

Wheat production will drop to 27.7 million metric tons from a record 37.5 million in 2013, Statistics Canada said in a report from Ottawa. The average estimate of 10 analysts surveyed by Bloomberg News was 29.1 million. The canola harvest in Canada, the world’s largest grower, will fall 23 percent to 13.9 million tons. Analysts had forecast 14.8 million.

Growers on the prairies said excessive rains in late June were likely to limit harvests, after flooding prompted local governments in Saskatchewan and Manitoba to declare states of emergency. Canadian farmers see output at “more normal levels” in 2014 after record spring-wheat, durum and canola crops last year, Statistics Canada said.

“The report in general is below the trade’s estimates,” David Reimann, a market analyst at Cargill Ltd. in Winnipeg, Manitoba, said in a telephone interview. “It’s a bit supportive to the canola market.”

The report is “mildly bullish” for canola as there may not be enough supplies to maintain the current level of exports and domestic processing, John Duvenaud, the publisher of Wild Oats Grain Market Advisory, said today on a conference call.

Limited Rallies

At the same time, any rally in canola prices may be limited by the “landslide” of soybeans expected from the U.S., Reimann said. Output will rise to an all-time high of 3.82 billion bushels this year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture said on Aug. 12.

Canada’s spring-wheat output will drop 27 percent to 20 million tons, while durum will fall 24 percent to 4.95 million tons. Soybean production is expected to increase to 5.9 million tons, surpassing the all-time high of 5.2 million tons a year earlier, the government agency said.

Statistics Canada said it interviewed about 12,850 farmers from July 23 to Aug. 4.

While planting in many parts of Western Canada was delayed this spring by cool weather and excess rain, warmer, drier conditions have helped fields recover, reports from Alberta, Manitoba and Saskatchewan show. More warm weather is needed as crops are 10 days to two weeks behind normal development in many areas in Saskatchewan, Canada’s largest producer of wheat and canola, the province said in an Aug. 14 report.

“The crops in general are average at best,” Wayne Palmer, a senior market analyst with Agri-Trend Marketing in Winnipeg, said in an e-mailed statement before the report. It’s “a total different story this year with crop production.”

Farmers collected record supplies of wheat and canola in 2013 amid higher average yields. Yields are expected to stay above average in 2014 even after the delayed planting and flooding in parts of the prairies, CWB said after a July tour.

Wheat futures on the Minneapolis Grain Exchange slid 2.6 percent this year through yesterday, and canola prices declined 5.7 percent on ICE Futures Canada in Winnipeg. 

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No Brie for Moscow as Cheeses Stack Up in France After Ban

At Alexander Krupetskov’s one-window cheese store in central Moscow, sales of products from France have tripled in the past two weeks.

Shoppers are stocking up on foods set to become scarce after Russia banned a range of products from the European Union and the U.S. in retaliation for sanctions over Ukraine. The nation of 143 million has been one of the fastest-growing export markets for French cheesemakers as Moscovites acquire a taste for creamy brie, pungent camembert and spicy Roquefort.

“The very foundation of the shop has been cast into major doubt,” said Krupetskov, who has four weeks of inventory left.

Waging Financial War

French cheese exports to Russia climbed 29 percent to 49.5 million euros ($66 million) last year, beating a 4.4 percent increase in total exports to 3 billion euros. Brie shipments to Russia rose 37 percent, while sales of stronger-tasting Roquefort advanced 13 percent, Eurostat trade data show.

At the Rungis food market outside Paris, a 30-hour drive west of Moscow, Nicolas Medard, deputy director of Thomas Export, says 100,000 rounds of brie headed for Russia are stranded after the ban announced on Aug. 7, with no new destination for now.

“All these cases were for Russia,” Medard says, pulling a tin of Pere Toinou brie from one of 2,000 plastic-wrapped cardboard boxes. “We’ll lose about 120,000 euros.”


Photographer: Andrey Rudakov/Bloomberg

Cheeses imported from the European Union, including brie from the President Cheese brand.


Russia’s blacklisting of $9.5 billion of agricultural products and food from the U.S., the EU, Norway, Canada and Australia is likely to accelerate annual inflation to 8 percent in 2015, above a target of 4.5 percent, according to government officials.

Specialty Store

Thomas Export may lose about 1.3 million euros in total sales due to Russia’s ban, around 4 percent of the company’s revenue, according to Medard. Sales to Ukraine are also in decline, he said.

In addition to Roquefort, Krupetskov displays French cheeses such as Fol Epi and Saint Agur. At the specialty store, which the cheesemonger says is the first of its kind in Moscow, French varieties accounted for 60 percent of the selection, with the remainder Swiss.

Swiss exporter Intercheese AG said last week it’s been contacted by Russian buyers looking for cheeses they can no longer get from the EU, such as mozzarella, Gouda and Edam.

Krupetskov, who says he panicked when he heard about the import ban, is looking to sample cheese from Latin America or Israel that might help restock his shelves.



.


Production Halt

The EU exported 257,000 tons of cheese to Russia last year, accounting for 33 percent of shipments outside the bloc and 2.6 percent of production. Cheese and curd shipments to Russia had a value of 985 million euros, with the Netherlands, Germany and Lithuania the biggest suppliers.

Dutch dairy producer FrieslandCampina said yesterday it halted production of cheese specifically for the Russian market. The company said it exported about 190 million euros of dairy products to Russia last year, and said the ban is adding to pressure on dairy markets.

While Germany and the Netherlands mostly sell bulk varieties such as yellow Edam to Russia, France and Italy ship higher-value specialty cheeses, said Bart Van Belleghem, managing director of the European Association of Dairy Trade, or Eucolait.

Export prices for French cheese were an average 4.30 euros per kilogram (2.2 pounds) last year, while Italy got 6.39 euros per kilogram, trade data published by Eurostat show. That compared with 3.36 euros a kilogram for Germany, the EU’s biggest cheese exporter.

Price Pressure

France and Italy ranked eighth and ninth among EU cheese exporters to Russia last year, meaning “the effects will be felt less harshly than in, say, Lithuania,” Van Belleghem said by telephone from Brussels on Aug. 14. “It could result in some price pressure, but I expect it to be less than for Gouda-type cheeses.”

At Societe Fromagere de la Brie, a cheesemaker in Saint-Simeon in the Brie region southeast of Paris, director Philippe Bobin saw no direct impact on earnings. He was concerned that falling milk prices will hurt the farmers who supply his company, making it tempting to drop dairy for growing grain.

The company, one of the last two artisanal brie makers in the region, makes the traditional variety from raw milk as well as a pasteurized version for exports. Societe Fromagere de la Brie lifted sales 8 percent last year to about 10 million euros.

Milk Prices

“The impact of the Russian embargo may be more violent and quicker than we think,” Bobin said. “As of this week, milk prices in the trade are starting to fall. We risk selling our cheeses at a lower price, but recompensed by the lower purchasing price of the raw material.”

The average milk price paid by 13 French dairies in August was 38.154 euro cents a liter, compared with an average base price of 38.021 euro cents in July for 19 dairies, according to data published online by milk producers.

Russia may have trouble finding a cheese supplier to replace Europe, Van Belleghem said. The country was 51 percent self-sufficient in cheese last year, while imports from the EU accounted for 29 percent of supply and Belarus supplied 12 percent, according to data from the European Commission.

“For milk powder and butter, I don’t expect any problems, there’s sufficient availability,” Van Belleghem said. “For cheese from Europe, there aren’t too many alternatives.” 

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