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NAWG Weekly Wheat Digest

NAWG Weekly Wheat Digest

Politico Pro (May 08, 2017) U.S Wheat Worried About Trade in the Trump Era
With the U.S. wheat industry besieged by low prices and a late-spring blizzard that wiped out 43 percent of the winter wheat crop in Kansas, Chandler Goule, CEO of the National Association of Wheat Growers, told MA that the Trump administration must have a sense of urgency on the trade front. “Right now we have wheat piled up in every state and, as we continue to withdraw or renegotiate or whatever the new term is going to be with the administration this week, every day that we are not involved in a trade agreement after pulling out of the TPP, Russia, Ukraine, France, Argentina and others are just going to continue to fill those gaps that U.S. wheat used to fill.” Goule also took a shot at the Heritage Foundation, warning the conservative think tank to stay out of farm bill negotiations: “The Heritage Foundation will never come out and tell you this publicly, but they tell members of Congress this: Their longtime goal is to get rid of the farm bill, get rid of nutrition programs and to get rid of crop insurance.” Pros, read the Q&A here.

NAWG in the News

Ag Pro (May 09, 2017) NAWG Secretary Testifies on the Importance of the Farm Bill to Michigan Agriculture Before Senate Panel
This past Saturday, the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition, and Forestry held a field hearing, entitled “Growing Jobs and Economic Opportunity: Perspectives on the 2018 Farm Bill from Michigan.”  NAWG Secretary Dave Milligan, a wheat farmer from Cass City, Mich., submitted testimony for the hearing record about how the Farm Bill is critical to the growth of Michigan agriculture.  The hearing also featured testimony from a wide variety of agricultural producers and Farm Bill stakeholders, examining agriculture, as well as conservation, rural economic development, research, forestry, energy, and nutrition policies that affect Michigan.

High Plains Journal (May 11, 2017) NAWG, USW Submit Joint Comments on Omnibus Report on Significant Trade Deficits
The National Association of Wheat Growers and U.S. Wheat Associations submitted comments for the public hearing on an Omnibus Report on Significant Trade Deficits, pursuant to a request for comments from the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative and U.S. Department of Commerce. “NAWG and USW strongly support efforts to correct policy barriers that reduce potential wheat exports to foreign markets. Open markets and fair trade are critical to the U.S. wheat industry as roughly half of U.S. wheat production is exported on average,” stated NAWG President and Kansas farmer David Schemm.

KTIC (May 12, 2017) Ligthizer Confirmed to be U.S. Trade Chief
The U.S. Senate on Thursday confirmed Robert Lighthizer, who has indicated his willingness to further pry open Japan’s agricultural market, to be a point man on President Donald Trump’s trade policy… U.S. Wheat Associates (USW) and the National Association of Wheat Growers (NAWG) welcome the U.S. Senate’s confirmation of Robert Lighthizer as the next U.S. Trade Representative. “We look forward to working with Amb. Lighthizer to help build new export opportunities for the farmers we represent,” said David Schemm, NAWG President and a wheat farmer from Sharon Springs, KS.

The Wichita Eagle (May 12, 2017) Opinion Piece by NAWG President David Schemm – Kansas Blizzard Highlights the Importance of Crop Insurance
The foot of snow that fell recently left wheat stalks bent and broken across western Kansas. The damage is heartbreaking. Estimates show as many as 1.7 million acres could be affected.
As I survey the damage, I think back to what it must have been like when my grandfather started farming in western Kansas in 1928. He built his home and had only his hands, and his family, to rely on. It was a tough life.

Wheat in the News

Ag Fax (May 09, 2017) Kansas Wheat: 40% of State’s Crop Hit by Spring Snow
As usual, Mother Nature will take her time when it comes to revealing the extent of damage to the wheat crop from the spring blizzard that hit western Kansas at the end of April. The storm dumped as much as 21 inches of snow in some areas. Other regions received lesser amounts but were still subjected to below-freezing temperatures and high winds for extended periods, according to the Kansas Weather Data Library. That combination is a problem for the crop in the stage of development much of the wheat was in, said Kansas State University assistant agronomy professor Romulo Lollato.

Ag Web (May 09, 2017) Wheat Tour Results “Inconclusive” Until All Damage is Assessed (Video)
The Kansas Wheat Tour wrapped up late last week, and scouts saw snow covering some of the fields. The tour is putting wheat yields for fields expected to be harvested down 40 percent from 2016 with a statewide average of 46 bushels per acre, roughly 282 million bushels in all. To Joe Vaclavik, president of Standard Grain, the results of the wheat tour was inconclusive.

KWCH Channel 12 (May 11, 2017) Wheat-Crop-Destroying Virus Becoming More Widespread (Video)
This is the time of year when wheat fields in Kansas should be lush and green. In some fields, however, the wheat is yell, sparse and flat. The culprit is the What Streak Mosaic Virus. Some farmers affected by it say it’s all thanks to their neighbors.

Manitoba Co-Operator (May 08, 2017) Canada’s Grain Sector Wants to Keep Wheat Off Trump’s Hit List and Preserve Open Border
With Canadian softwood lumber and dairy already in President Donald Trump’s crosshairs, there are fears United States could soon go after Canadian wheat. The Americans have long complained Canadian wheat has enjoyed unfettered access to the U.S. market under the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA), but charge Canadian regulations discriminate against American wheat shipped to Canada. Canada’s grain sector agrees. And with the U.S. being one of Canada’s best wheat markets, has been calling on the federal government for changes.

Wheat Industry News (May 12, 2017) USDA: Wheat Harvest Expected to be Down 35 Percent
Low prices for wheat have led many Oklahoma farmers to forgo bringing the crop to harvest…Last year, 5 million acres of wheat were planted in Oklahoma, and 3.5 million were harvested. This year, 2.7 million acres are expected to be harvested, which is even lower than the 2.8 million acres harvested in the disastrous, drought-affected 2014 crop year, which saw just 47.6 million bushels produced, the lowest production since 1957, according to Mike Schulte, executive director of Oklahoma Wheat Commission.

High Plains Journal (May 10, 2017) Visiting Farmers Learn Quality is Very Important to Latin America
Every year, U.S. Wheat sends a group of farmers (selected by state wheat commissions) to tour a region of the world and gain a better understanding of what customers want and need. Recently, three U.S. farmers traveled to Mexico, Haiti, Ecuador and Chile, including: Rachael Vonderhaar, a wheat farmer from Camden, Ohio, and secretary of the Ohio Small Grains Marketing Program; Eric Spates, a wheat farmer from Poolesville, Maryland, and member of the Maryland Grain Producers Utilization Board; and Ken Tremain, a wheat farmer from LaGrange, Wyoming, and member of the Wyoming Wheat Marketing Commission. Shawn Campbell, deputy director of USW’s West Coast Office, led the team and was joined by overseas staff based in the USW Mexico City and USW Santiago Offices.



Source: Wheat World, National Association of Wheat Growers