READ the NAFB’s National Ag News for Thursday, June 3rd

Sponsored by the American Farm Bureau Federation

Farmer Share of Food Dollar May Grow

The latest federal data shows that the farmers’ share of the average U.S. food dollar increased slightly. The USDA’s Economic Research Service tracks yearly spending by American consumers on food, as well as how much of that dollar is captured by each part of the food supply chain. The agency recently released data for 2019 showing that the foodservice industry continues to claim a growing part of the average food dollar, increasing three percent to 38.5 cents in 2019. Farm production was the only other part of the food chain that saw its share of the food dollar increase, but that increase wasn’t a large one. Wisconsin Farmer Dot Com says the farmers’ share of the food dollar rose from a 25-year low of 7.4 cents in 2018 to 7.6 cents the following year. Paul Mitchell, director of the Renk Agribusiness Institute at the University of Wisconsin, says he was surprised by the slight increase after years of decline. “I think part of it was the foodservice side got saturated,” he says. “It couldn’t get any bigger and the farmer share got so low it had to go upward. Once you hit rock bottom, there’s nowhere to go but up.”

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POET Ethanol Expands Business by 40 Percent

POET announced it has acquired Flint Hills Resources’ entire ethanol business. Reuters says that highlights the largest American biofuel producer’s bet that conventional renewable fuels like corn-based ethanol will play a big role in the push to reduce U.S. carbon emissions. The company says the deal will boost POET’s ethanol production capacity by 40 percent to three billion gallons annually. “Biofuels are one of the best near-term solutions to climate change,” says POET founder and Chief Executive Jeff Broin (Broyne). “We don’t have decades to wait, and biofuels are already here today.” The acquisition includes six biofuel processing facilities that are in Iowa and Nebraska, as well as two terminals in Texas and Georgia. POET, based in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, will now operate 33 biofuel processing operations in eight states. Flint Hills is a refining, biofuels, and petrochemical company based in Wichita, Kansas. It was the fifth-largest ethanol producer in America before the acquisition. The deal will also boost POET’s dried distiller’s grain production to seven million tons a year and its corn oil production to 975 million pounds annually.

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Barchart Forecasts a Cut to USDA Corn Yield and Production Numbers

Barchart announced its initial 2021 Yield and Production forecasts for U.S. corn and soybeans, which both show a downside risk to the USDA’s projected numbers from its May WASDE Report. The company now says the end-of-season U.S. corn production is forecast at 14.5 billion bushels, with a yield of 173.5 bushels per acre. That’s compared to the USDA production forecast at 15 billion bushels and a 179.5 bushel per acre yield. Barchart’s end-of-season soybean production forecast is 4.3 billion bushels with a yield of 49.5 bushels per acre. That’s compared to the USDA production forecast of 4.4 billion bushels and a yield of 50.8 bushels per acre. A statement from the company says, “Our initial 2021 forecasts suggest potential downside for both corn and soybean production relative to the USDA numbers, and we’re happy to help provide insights like this to the public.” The company releases yield and production forecasts on the first Tuesday of each month during the growing season.

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New Soybean Seed Trait Delivers on Consumer Preference, Farmer Bottom Line

The U.S. soy industry is continuing to drive demand through innovation for soybean farmers and end-users. With funding and support from the soy checkoff, the Missouri Soybean Merchandising Council is leading the effort to build momentum for SOYLEIC (Soy-LAY-ick), a non-GMO soybean variety containing high oleic trait technology. This variety will give farmers a chance to meet end-user high oleic oil needs for specific markets. “SOYLEIC is the latest example of the value the checkoff brings to soybean farmers by providing research funding investments that result in innovations farmers can put to work right now to maximize profit opportunities,” says Meagan Kaiser, USB Treasurer. “The reliability that U.S. soybean farmers provide can meet end-user demand, expand and strengthen market share in the food industry, and diversify their acres, furthering profitability on the farm.” SOYLEIC seeds are going into about 40,000 acres across 14 states from Georgia to Minnesota during the 2021 growing season. A new website, www.soyleic.com, is now available for more information for farmers, researchers, chefs, and health-conscious consumers. High oleic soybean oil provides increased functionality and contains zero trans-fat. It creates nutritional food for humans and feeds for animal diets while offering a diversified and value-added planting option for farmers.

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World Pork Expo Returns Next Week

The World Pork Expo makes an official return to the Iowa State Fairgrounds in Des Moines, June 9-11. The National Pork Producers Council presents the Expo, and this year will mark the 33rd annual event. Thousands of producers and industry professionals will gather to learn about the latest technologies, innovations, enjoy some free pork, and much more. “We’re so excited to gather for the first time since 2018,” says NPPC President Jen Sorenson. “This year’s Expo has an outstanding lineup of seminars, networking opportunities, and more that aren’t to be missed.” The trade show will feature over 700 vendor booths and span more than 30,000 square feet. Companies from North America and around the world will be presenting products and services during the event. The Expo will feature 19 educational sessions, including 13 business seminars to inform attendees about ecosystems, new production systems, climate neutrality, and more. Six Pork Academy seminars will give producers a chance to learn more about nutrition, sustainability, data collection, and more. Attendees who missed the chance to register online can register there at the event by going to the Animal Learning Center.

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Competitive Bidding Pushes Land Prices Higher

Interest in buying agricultural land continues to grow after a COVID-19 slowdown blanketed the land market in 2020. A Farmers National Company release says farmers are feeling more financially secure because of rising commodity prices and large government payments last year. That is causing farmers to be more aggressive in bidding for additional land than has been the case during the last six years. “Farmland sales prices are up 5 to 15 percent in the past six months, with most of the increase coming since the first of the year,” says Randy Dickhut (DICK-hoot), senior vice president of real estate operations with Farmers National. “Competitive bidding among interested buyers is really pushing land prices right now.” The biggest increases are happening in the Grain Belt and with most types of land. “We’re seeing competitive bidding push prices for good cropland to levels approaching 2014 values,” Dickhut says. “Average to lower-quality farms are seeing stronger selling prices too, while pastureland increases are more modest.” He also says the demand for good farmland is outstripping the supply of available farms for sale.

SOURCE: NAFB News Service

By Brian Allmer - The BARN

Brian Allmer & the BARN are members of the National Association of Farm Broadcasting (NAFB), the Colorado FFA Foundation, the Colorado 4H Foundation, the Colorado Farm Show Marketing Committee, 1867 Club Board Member, Denver Ag & Livestock Club Member, the Weld County Fair Board, the Briggsdale FFA Advisory Council, Briggsdale 4H Club Beef Leader & Founder / Coordinator of the Briggsdale Classic Open Jackpot Show.