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National Ag News for January 24, 2023

USDA Announces Additional Assistance for Dairy Farmers

The USDA announced additional assistance for U.S. dairy producers, including a second round of payments through the Pandemic Market Volatility Assistance Program. The agency also announced a new Organic Dairy Marketing Assistance Program. The moves will help USDA better support small- and medium-sized dairy operations that weathered COVID and now face other challenges. “USDA is announcing a second set of payments totaling almost $100 million to close out the $350 million commitment under the pandemic assistance program,” says USDA Undersecretary for Marketing and Regulatory Programs Jenny Moffitt. “The funds will be released through partnerships with dairy handlers and cooperatives to deliver the payments.” USDA will also be releasing new assistance targeted to small- and medium-sized organic dairy farmers. The goal will be to help those producers with anticipated marketing costs as they face a variety of challenges from weather to supply-chain challenges. For more information on USDA assistance, go to farmers.gov.

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USDA Accepting Applications for Netherlands Trade Mission

The USDA’s Foreign Agriculture Service is accepting applications from U.S. exporters for its first-ever agricultural trade mission to Amsterdam, Netherlands, April 17-20. “Agribusiness producers, exporters, and growers in the U.S. may find the Netherlands to be a perfect gateway into Europe,” says FAS Administrator Daniel Whitley. “Participants will explore exporting opportunities in this mature market, which continues to grow, and meet potential buyers in surrounding regional markets.” U.S. ag and related exports to the Netherlands reached $3.4 billion in 2021, making it the tenth-largest global market. During the trade mission, U.S. participants will meet with buyers from the Netherlands, Iceland, Norway, Sweden, Finland, Denmark, Belgium, and Germany. For companies interested in expanding sales in the Netherlands and the other markets, export opportunities include oilseeds, fats, vegetables, oils, grains, pulses, and many other exports. The deadline to apply for the Netherlands trade mission is Thursday, January 26. For information, go to fas.usda.gov.

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Alltech Shares Global Feed Production Survey

Alltech released its 2023 Agri-Food Outlook today, highlighting global feed production survey data. Despite significant challenges that hit the entire supply chain, global feed production remained steady in 2022 at 1.266 billion metric tons. That’s a decrease of only one-half of one percent from 2021’s estimates. The top feed-producing countries during the past year were China at number one with 260.7 million metric tons, the U.S. in second at 240.4 MMT, and Brazil a distant third with 81.9 million. Together, the top ten feed-producing countries produced 64 percent of the total world production. Half the world’s feed consumption is concentrated in four areas, including China, the U.S., Brazil, and India. Vietnam jumped ahead of Argentina and Germany into the top ten in feed tonnage. Russia overtook Spain, which reported a significant reduction in feed production. Feed production increased in several regions, including Latin America, North America, and the Oceania countries.

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Farm Futures 2023 Planting Survey Results

A survey from Farm Futures shows the 2023 acreage battle is ongoing. However, there could be a surprise when it comes to the total number of corn and soybean acres. A surge in projected wheat acres and costly inputs will likely limit any expansion of corn and soybean acres. About 70 percent of the respondents said they were locked in on 2023 acreage decisions by late December. Farm Futures says corn and soybean plantings will increase only minimally compared to past projections due in large part to shrinking profit margins for both corn and soybeans. The survey shows that 90.5 million acres of corn and 88.9 million acres of soybeans will get planted in the spring. Soaring costs of inputs likely mean more wheat acres as wheat typically requires less nitrogen. Anhydrous ammonia retailed for about $1,400 per ton last fall, so many farmers opted for less nitrogen-intensive crops for 2023 plantings.

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Argentina Rain Forecast too Late to Save Crops

Hot and dry weather continues to damage crops in Argentina and southern Brazil. Last week was the third-hottest and the overall driest third week in January in more than 30 years for the main soybean-growing regions in Argentina. The drought stress has combined with extremely hot temperatures to significantly drop the expected corn and soybean yields in Argentina. Agriculture Dot Com says more rain is in the forecast during the coming weeks, but the bad news is that the rains are too late to help crops. Brazil saw near-normal precipitation during the last week in Mato Grosso, the top-producing state in Brazil. However, hot and dry conditions continue to damage expected yields in southern Brazil. Dryness is expected to stick around in southern Brazil, and this week may become one of the hottest and driest weeks in more than 30 years in Rio Grande do Sul near the southern border.

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U.S. Cattle on Feed Down Three Percent

Cattle and calves on feed for the slaughter market in the U.S. for feedlots with a capacity of 1,000 or more head totaled 11.7 million on January 1. The inventory was three percent below January 1 of last year. That inventory included 7.03 million steers and steer calves, down four percent from the previous year. That group accounted for 60 percent of the total inventory. Heifers and heifer calves accounted for 4.65 million head, down one percent from 2022. Placements in feedlots during December totaled 1.8 million head, eight percent below 2021. Net placements were 1.75 million head. During December, placements of cattle and calves under 600 pounds were 435,000 head, 600-699 pounds were 435,000, 700-799 hit 415,000 head, and 800-899 pounds were 304,000 head. Marketings of fed cattle during December totaled 1.74 million head, six percent below last year. Other disappearances totaled 54,000 head in December, unchanged from 2021.

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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.

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