Typically at this time of year, we would write about making financial decisions to position your operation through the fourth quarter and better hog prices, but this isn’t a typical year. The run in hog prices beginning a couple of months ago has been counter-seasonal, to say the least. Driven primarily by slaughter numbers that were significantly off the USDA estimates provided in the September Quarterly Hogs and Pigs Report, it is clear to me that demand for pork picked up at the same time, probably replacing some beef demand....More
A Purdue University grain specialist has prepared some tips for farmers to keep stored grain in top shape.
Klein Ileleji says that anytime growers decide to put corn into storage, and especially when they plan to store it for several months, they need to manage the grain properly to keep it from spoiling. That includes drying corn to a safer moisture level when it comes out of the field and then properly cleaning, loading, aerating and monitoring it....More
Another week with little or no data has all of U.S. agriculture in a pickle. The lack of data and information has not stopped the industry, as grain and livestock harvests must go on and commerce must be conducted. But the void has left those activities to operate, to a great degree, in the dark. Any wrecks that are happening may not be discovered until the light of day and renewed information availability reveal them....More
“Farmers and ranchers, along with 90% of the country, are frustrated with Congress. Aside from shutting down the government, the one-year farm bill extension Congress granted last session also expired at midnight, while the new farm bill has yet to formally reach the conference process,” says American Farm Bureau Federation President Bob Stallman ....More
On an island off the northeastern tip of Long Island, NY, U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) scientists are doing their part to safeguard the U.S. food supply, according to a report by USDA’s Agricultural Research Service....More
As September dawns, it behooves us I think to consider the factors that will likely have major impacts on fall hog markets. Those, of course, all fit one way or another into the economist’s pat answer of “Supply and demand,” but some details will probably be far more illuminating and, hopefully, satisfying....More
I feel a bit that way today as I watch the corn and soybean markets explode upward. “Well, I told you it was dry!” Dryness, of course, is not the only driver of the increases, so far, of 60-cents per bushel for soybean futures, 25-cents per bushel on corn and $15 per ton on soybean meal....More
We regularly talk to our clients about understanding costs and managing risk in order to be ready when opportunity knocks. With margins for hog producers above the 90th percentile many times, and approaching historical levels for some time periods, opportunities over the past six weeks and looking ahead to the next 12 months are phenomenal....More
Just what can we say about the impact of porcine epidemic diarrhea (PED) virus on summer pig numbers and, by extension, winter hog slaughter? That question is floating through markets these days with no clear answers available. Somehow, “A whole lot!” just doesn’t seem to suffice as an answer to the question of how many pigs have been lost. And I fear the numbers I have produced in recent weeks are little, if any, better....More
Total pork inventories as of June 30 were 4.7% lower than last year but remained just over 8% larger than the average of the past five years. That was a major feature of last week’s Cold Storage report. Pork stocks normally fall in June as hog numbers decline but this year’s June drawdown was extraordinary. In fact, it was the largest June decline in frozen pork stocks in 20 years....More
I just returned from my annual pilgrimage to the Wisconsin Dells for the National Pork Industry Conference (NPIC). Again this year the conference was very well attended, with more than 750 producers from across the United States. This diverse crowd gives me the opportunity to get a pretty accurate crop report from individuals driving to the event from all directions. The overwhelming sentiment? The corn crop looks good with some parts of the United States even starting to become a bit dry....More
Registration is now open for the Carthage (IL) Veterinary Service Ltd 23rd Annual Swine Conference to be held on Aug. 27, 2013on the scenic campus of Western Illinois University in Macomb, IL.
This conference is known for providing quick-fire sessions with cutting-edge information that pork producers can implement the day after the conference....More
The American Farm Bureau Federation (AFBF) supports legislation introduced today in both the House and Senate that would permanently repeal the estate tax. Sen. John Thune’s (R-SD.) bill, The Death Tax Repeal Act of 2013, coupled with bipartisan legislation of the same title introduced by Reps. Kevin Brady (R-TX) and Mike McIntyre (D-NC), is welcomed by America’s farm and ranch families....More
One year ago, it appeared that packing capacity would become a real issue in the fall of 2013. The concern was well-founded, as producers were expanding the breeding herd by roughly 1% and average litter size was growing at a rate of about 2% per year. The combination suggested that U.S. hog slaughter could grow by more than 3%, year on year, by late 2013. With hog slaughter already headed toward a new quarterly record of 30.433 million head in fourth-quarter 2013, the prospect of pushing 3% more hogs through the current packing sector looked daunting.
Then the worst drought in 50 years came knocking. Plans to grow the breeding herd and improve litter size slowed. Slaughter levels in fourth-quarter 2013 will likely be lower than last year. But questions about packer capacity loom....More
Attuned to the times, this year’s 6th annual Pork Lenders meeting, designed specifically for members of the banking community, will provide up-to-date financial, market, export and legislative information. This year’s conference will also offer more information about a farm-level risk management tool the Minnesota Pork Producers Association has developed....More
Some 33 pork industry owners and managers from 10 states and Canada completed certificates in business management in May through the Executive Pork Producers Program, offered by the University of Illinois’ College of Veterinary Medicine in Urbana. ...More
The Clay County Circuit Court of Louisville, IL, has issued an opinion on insurance coverage that has a significant impact upon agriculture and insurance policyholders in Illinois. In a recent decision, Judge Daniel E. Hartigan ruled that Country Mutual Insurance Company wrongfully refused to defend its longtime insured, Bible Pork, Inc. in the nuisance case of Pierson, et al. v. Bible Pork, Inc., (2008-MR-14), under two Country Mutual policies, the AgriPlus comprehensive general liability policy and an umbrella policy....More
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack today announced a package of disaster assistance valued at $209 million to help farmers, land owners and communities recover from the effects of Superstorm Sandy. Funding is provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture's (USDA) Emergency Conservation Program (ECP), Emergency Forest Restoration Program (EFRP) and Emergency Watershed Protection Program (EWP)....More