NATIONAL AG NEWS SPONSORED BY THE AMERICAN FARM BUREAU FEDERATION

National Ag News for June 27, 2022

NCGA Applauds Ruling on Imported Fertilizers

The U.S. Department of Commerce made a final determination last week on imported fertilizers and unfair subsidies. The department found that urea ammonium nitrate fertilizer exported to America was subsidized and sold at less than normal value in the U.S. market during its period of investigation. The National Corn Growers Association says it’s an important step in the process, but the ruling won’t on its own lead to the placement of duties on nitrogen fertilizers shipped into the country. The final stage in the process is expected later this summer when the International Trade Commission makes a final ruling. “Placing tariffs on nitrogen fertilizers will land yet another blow to farmers, who are already dealing with a host of challenges,” says Brooke Appleton, NCGA vice president of public policy. “Farmers can’t farm with one hand tied behind their backs, and these actions getting pushed by fertilizer companies will tie their hands.”

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White House Meets with Refiners on High Pump Prices but No Solutions Yet

U.S. Energy Secretary Jennifer Granholm recently expressed interest in possibly lifting smog-fighting gasoline rules to help fight high gas prices at the nation’s pumps. The secretary also backed off a plan to ban fuel exports during a wide-ranging meeting with refiners. Reuters says tensions are high between President Biden and oil refiners. The two sides departed from the meeting far apart on possible solutions. Industry sources familiar with the meeting say both sides will continue talking. Biden has recently been critical of oil industry CEOs for pulling in huge profits from a supply crunch made worse by Russia invading Ukraine. The White House is unhappy with the refining industry’s move to idle about one million barrels per day of production capacity since 2020. Administration officials say the companies need to use those profits to restart plants and help fill the supply gap. Refiners say investing in reopening plants carries significant financial risks.

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International Grains Council Boosts Production Outlook

The International Grains Council raised its outlook for total global grain production in the 2022-2023 marketing year, while also increasing its forecast for ending stockpiles. Wheat and coarse grain production are now forecast at 2.255 billion metric tons, up from the May prediction of 2.251 billion. Ending stockpiles are forecast at 583 million metric tons. Wheat output is pegged at 769 million metric tons, unchanged from a month ago. Inventories are projected at 273 million tons, up from 271 million in May. Corn production is now expected to be 1.19 billion metric tons, up from the previous prediction of 1.184 billion. The IGC’s inventory forecast rose from 269 million tons last month to 271 million this month. The soybean production outlook rose to 390 million metric tons from 387 million in the last forecast. However, carryover stocks dropped from 58 million tons last month to 56 million in the new forecast.

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Keep Kids Fed Act Passed in Both Chambers of Congress

The House and Senate each passed the Keep Kids Fed Act last week, but the bill had to return to the House because the Senate version was slightly different. The Hagstrom Report says the House passed the Senate’s version of the bill that requires the re-establishment of the reduced price category that Rand Paul of Kentucky insisted on including in the Senate version. The agreement between the leaders of each committee in charge of school meals originally merged the reduced price and free meal categories into one free meal category for the upcoming school year. The legislation also provides $3 billion in additional funding for the school meals program, with offsets coming from rescissions from the Agriculture Department and Small Business Administration programs. Senate Ag Committee Chair Debbie Stabenow says, “Schools and parents can rest easy knowing that help is on the way so kids can continue getting school and summer meals.”

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Sustainable Oils Facility Opens New Facility for Renewable Diesel Production

Sustainable Oils opened a new state-of-the-art facility in Great Falls, Montana, last week. The facility works with over 100 U.S. farmers to grow camelina (cam-eh-LEE-nah), a plant used by their parent company Global Clean Energy to produce ultra-low carbon renewable fuels. Renewable diesel produced from camelina is a drop-in replacement for traditional diesel, but with fewer contaminants and far fewer emissions. The company says camelina has the potential to receive the lowest carbon intensity score of all the available feedstocks on the market today. Sustainable Oils specializes in the breeding, research, and marketing of camelina. They contract directly with farmers in the Northern Plains, High Plains, and Pacific Northwest to grow the camelina that will ultimately get used to create renewable fuel at Global Clean Energy’s refinery in Bakersfield, California. The company looks forward to enhancing economic opportunities for rural communities while producing some of the lowest-carbon renewable fuels in the world.

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Application Period Open for Conservation Legacy Awards

Farmers have a chance to share the story of how conservation is part of their farm operations and get recognized with a Conservation Legacy Award. All U.S. soybean farmers are eligible to win the award, sponsored by the American Soybean Association, the United Soybean Board, the Soybean Checkoff, and several others. The award recognizes farm management practices of soybean farmers that are both environmentally friendly and profitable. The selection process is divided into four regions, including the Midwest, Upper Midwest, Northeast, and South. One farmer from each region will be recognized at the Commodity Classic and one will be the award recipient. Some of the eligible practices include reduced tillage, cover crops, and improving energy efficiency or water quality. Winners get an expense-paid trip for two to the Commodity Classic on March 9-11, 2023, in Orlando, Florida. Winners also get recognition at the ASA Awards Banquet at Commodity Classic. Find out more details at soygrowers.com.

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By Tucker Allmer - The BARN

Tucker 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.