Podcast: Trade is a Many Splendored Thing- with Vince Peterson
Washington Grain Commission – 04/08/2019
U.S. Wheat Associates has seen their budget rise substantially in 2019 thanks to a President Trump initiative called the Agricultural Trade Promotion Program or ATP which will funnel an additional $8.25 million into the organization’s coffers over the next three years. Listen in to episode 119 as the president of U.S. Wheat Associates outlines how that money will be spent to increase America’s wheat exports in an episode entitled: “Part 2: Trade Is A Many Splendored Thing—With Vince Peterson”. Peterson also addresses the threat of declining sales into Japan and explains why he agrees that Northwest soft white wheat is in an enviable position among U.S. wheat classes.
Nigeria Seeking Grain Self-Sufficiency
World-Grain – 04/08/2019
Nigeria, Africa’s largest economy, is grappling with an increasing grain import bill as the current lack of a state-supported credit facility for farmers, poor basic infrastructure, surge in farm input costs and insecurity, especially in rice-growing regions, hamper efforts to achieve self-sufficiency in wheat, rice, corn, soybeans and other critical agricultural production.
Although the overall growth of Nigeria’s domestic product (GDP), estimated at slightly more than $500 billion, was 0.8% in 2017, up from the -1.5% in 2016, with positive projections of 2.1% and 2.5% in 2018 and 2019, production of wheat, rice, corn and soybeans has remained below national consumption demand. The value of locally produced wheat in Nigeria was estimated at $13 million in 2016, rising to $15.5 million in 2017 with projections that local producers would increase production to $16 million and $16.3 million in 2018 and 2019, respectively. But the national wheat production capacity is a drop in the ocean compared to the Nigerian market demand that was valued at $1.2 billion in 2016 and $1.5 billion in 2017, with estimates putting the 2018 and 2019 requirements at $1.65 billion and $1.7 billion, respectively.
US-Canada Trade Conflicts
The Progressive Farmer – 04/08/2019
Canada could announce a new list of retaliatory tariffs on more U.S. goods, including agricultural products, as early as next week. The tariffs would maintain parity with the U.S. over steel and aluminum tariffs the Trump administration imposed against Canada. David MacNaughton, Canada’s ambassador to the U.S., highlighted the tariffs Monday as he spoke to members of the North American Agricultural Journalists at the group’s annual meeting in Washington. MacNaughton said Canadian officials are reconfiguring retaliatory tariffs to keep roughly $15 billion in products from the U.S. under either a 25% or 10% tariff.
Cold February Puts Washington Wheat Farmers a Month Behind
The Spokesman Review– 04/08/2019
During most years, many area farmers put in their spring wheat crop at about the same time that area high schools begin chasing championship dreams at the State B tournament. However, the snow and cold of February has mostly kept tractors out of the field at the same time turbulent market forces remain unresolved. “In the dryland parts, guys have got started this week,” said farmer Mike Miller, who grows wheat both west and south of Ritzville. “The irrigated guys in Moses Lake, they are going to town now. But in the Palouse, they still have a ways to go. They still have snow on the north slopes and some mud.” If February weather produced any good news, it was that the snow provided the winter wheat a blanket of insulation from the bitter cold, he said.
New Flour Mill Aims to Add Grower, Consumer Options
Capital Press – 04/05/2019
Owners of a farm south of Sun Valley, Idaho, expect to have their new flour mill in operation by the end of April. Bulk wholesale supplies to bakeries will initially be Hillside Grain’s primary market, owner Brett Stevenson said. Retail and direct sales will also be pursued eventually at the mill, sited on part of the large Hillside Ranch barley and wheat farm. “Mid-scale food production and being able to process some Idaho-grown grains locally is pretty exciting, as is fresh flour,” she said. Wheat and barley industry representatives say expanding processing capacity in the state, and the accompanying market opportunities, will benefit growers. About half of Idaho’s wheat crop, including most of it grown in the northern part of the state, is exported. Southern Idaho has more local processing. “It provides another market channel, another way for Idaho wheat growers to get their product to market,” Wheat Commission Executive Director Blaine Jacobson said. For the established artisan-bakery segment, flour that goes from field to mill directly is a logical next step that could “be to the baked-good industry what craft beers are to beer.”
Source: U.S. Wheat Associates