Saudi Arabia Grows Wheat Production
World-Grain – 03/18/2019
Saudi Arabia’s wheat production is expected to skyrocket the next two market years due to the government’s decision to reduce irrigation. Production is forecast at 500,000 tonnes in 2018-19 and 700,000 tonnes in 2019-20, up from 10,000 tonnes in 2017-18, according to a March 14 report from the U.S. Department of Agricultures’ Foreign Agricultural Service (FAS). The Saudi Ministry of Environment, Agriculture and Water (MEWA) estimates that 87,280 hectares (HA) of wheat will be cultivated this market year. The nation partially rescinded a virtual ban on domestic production of wheat that had been in place for three years, the report said. “Wheat production is being permitted to provide medium and smaller size forage producers with an alternative field crop,” the FAS said.
Brazil, U.S. Discussing Trade Deal
World-Grain – 03/18/2019
Brazil is considering granting an import quota of 750,000 tonnes of U.S. wheat per year without tariffs in exchange for other trade concessions, Reuters reported. That amounts to about 10% of Brazilian annual wheat imports and is part of a two-decades-old commitment to import 750,000 tonnes of wheat a year free of tariffs that Brazil made during the World Trade Organization Uruguay Round of talks on agriculture but never adopted. Farm state senators have asked that wheat sales be on the agenda, in a letter to U.S. President Donald Trump seen by Reuters. They estimate such a quota would increase U.S. wheat sales by between $75 million and $120 million a year.
USDA Gives Trade Updates on USMCA, China, Japan
Successful Farming – 03/18/2019
As farmers and agriculture business leaders from around the country gathered in Washington D.C. this week to celebrate National Ag Day, clearly trade was a concern. Dozens of farmers spent time on The Hill urging their congressional representatives to support the passage of USMCA and to press for trade progress with China…David Salmonsen sees a lot of farmers from around the country in his office at American Farm Bureau this time of year. Lately, their number one question for the Senior Director of Congressional Relations is, “when is all of this going to be over?” They want to know when USMCA will be finished. “That’s a process question,” Salmonsen responds. “First, the signing in November. Now, there’s required reports that have to be done hopefully by the middle of April. Those are reports about the economic impact. And then the administration sends up what are called implementing legislation.
U.S. Trade Talks with China are Very ‘Dynamic,’ Perdue Says
Bloomberg – 03/18/2019
China has offered the U.S. some “very attractive numbers” for purchases of farm goods as part of “dynamic” trade talks, but there are still concerns over areas such as biotechnology, according to U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. While parts of the agriculture deal are done, the U.S. is still ironing out details including how commitments will be enforced and implemented…The U.S. is pushing China not just to increase farm purchases, but also to address structural trade issues, Gregg Doud, the chief agricultural negotiator for the Office of the U.S. Trade Representative, said at the conference in Florida. He cited issues with the Asian country’s domestic subsidies as well as the nation’s tariff-rate quotas. The quotas pertain to shipments of wheat, corn and rice. The U.S. has said that China has at times fallen short of this commitment, which includes 9.64 million tons of wheat and 7.2 million tons of corn.
New WSU Soft White Spring Wheat Ryan in High Demand
Capital Press – 03/18/2019
Seed for a high-yielding new soft white spring wheat variety is in short supply this year, dealers say. Geoff Schulz, seed operations manager for HighLine Grain Growers in Reardan, Wash., said he’s been sold out of Washington State University’s new soft white spring wheat Ryan for six weeks. He gets calls every day from farmers and other seed companies looking for Ryan and another WSU soft white spring, Seahawk. Many of the calls come from irrigated farmers who usually plant dark northern spring wheat, he said. “I could have sold four times as much Ryan as what I had out there, and I thought I was swimming in it,” he said. WSU’s spring wheat breeder, Mike Pumphrey, pointed to Ryan as the highest-yielding soft white spring wheat in intermediate or high rainfall zone trials in recent years. “Its yield has been 8 to 15 percent higher than the varieties that came before,” Pumphrey said. “That’s a lot of money per acre, if other inputs are about the same.”
Source: U.S. Wheat Crop