Strengthening the U.S.-Kenya Trade Relationship to Grow U.S. Agricultural Exports to East Africa
USDA-FAS – 06/25/2019
Kenya is an emerging middle-income country and has one of the best performing economies in sub-Saharan Africa. It serves as the commercial hub for East Africa, with coastal ports that allow for imports to be received and transported to landlocked neighbors. Kenya relies heavily on imported food and farm products, much of which the United States produces competitively. In 2018, Kenya imported $2.5 billion of agricultural products from the world. While the country’s global imports of food and agricultural products has trended upwards, its imports from the United States have remained steady, resulting in a reduced U.S. market share as other nations increase exports to Kenya. Indonesia is currently the top agricultural exporter to Kenya…Wheat is the number one imported agricultural product in Kenya. According to USDA estimates, about 85 percent of domestic consumption was imported in 2018, valued at approximately $355 million. Between 2014 and 2018, Kenya purchased two thirds of the wheat it imported from Russia, Ukraine, Argentina, and Germany, with most of the balance coming from Canada and Poland. Over the same period, Kenyan millers purchased between 2 and 6 percent of their wheat from the United States, the low amount being primarily due to higher prices and technical barriers to trade.
Agriculture Secretary Says U.S. Farmers are ‘Casualties’ of Trade War
Reuters – 06/25/2019
U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue acknowledged that American farmers are “casualties” of President Donald Trump’s trade war with China, according to an interview broadcast on Tuesday. Perdue told CNN he did not expect a trade deal to be reached when Trump meets with Chinese President Xi Jinping this month at the G20 summit in Japan but hopes one can be struck by the end of the year. The Trump administration has designated aid for farmers, a key constituency that helped carry the Republican to his 2016 electoral win, but they still have been among the hardest hit from the trade dispute with China. “I think they are one of the casualties with trade disruption, yes,” Perdue told CNN. “We knew going in that when you flew the penalty flag on China, the retaliation, if it came, would be against the farmer.
U.S. Aims to Restart China Trade Talks, Will Not Accept Conditions on Tariff Use
Reuters – 06/25/2019
The United States hopes to re-launch trade talks with China after President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping meet in Japan on Saturday, but Washington will not accept any conditions around the U.S. use of tariffs in the dispute, a senior administration official said on Tuesday. Trump has threatened to impose tariffs on another $325 billion of goods, covering nearly all the remaining Chinese imports into the United States – including consumer products such as cellphones, computers and clothing – if the meeting with Xi produces no progress in resolving a host of U.S. complaints around the way China does business. The two sides could agree not to impose new tariffs as a goodwill gesture to get negotiations going, the official said, but he said it was unclear if that would happen…The back-and-forth set up what could prove to be a tricky meeting between Trump and Xi at the Group of 20 summit meeting in Osaka. The session will be the first time they have met since trade talks between the world’s two largest economies broke down in May, when the United States accused China of reneging on reform pledges it made.
Kansas Wheat Harvest Report June 24
Kansas Wheat Commission – 06/24/2019
Harvest got off to a slow, labored start in south central Kansas over the weekend. The normal excitement and anticipation for wheat harvest can hardly be found in the area, as farmers who are normally finished by late June hop into their combines to face the muddy, dreary conditions for the first time this year. Farmers, who are not typically folks who complain about rain, need some hot, dry weather to really get combines rolling. According to USDA/NASS for the week ending June 23, winter wheat condition rated 4 percent very poor, 12 poor, 28 fair, 43 good and 13 excellent. Winter wheat coloring was 92 percent, behind 97 last year. Mature was 47 percent, well behind 82 last year. Harvested was 5 percent, well behind 48 last year and 36 for the five-year average. Mike Snell, manager of the Farmers Coop Equity Co., in Medicine Lodge, reported that his location took in their first load on the 18th, but have only had three dry days since for harvesting. His area, which would have normally finished their harvest this week, is only around five to ten percent harvested. The area received more rain over the weekend which halted progress. It’s too early in the harvest to get a good feel for yields, but test weights (until yesterday) were hanging at about 62 pounds per bushel. Snell estimates the most recent rains may lower that average by about a pound.
Area Elevators See Trickle of Wheat
Great Bend Tribune – 06/25/2019
The first few trucks of wheat arrived at the Stafford County Flour Mills elevator in Macksville this week, a sign that harvest may soon begin at full speed in the Golden Belt. “Just a handful of trucks,” said Branch Manager Erin Woolf. But she expects harvest to be going strong by Friday, “if we don’t get any weather.” Woolf said a few farmers have brought in coffee-can samples and moisture content ranged from 13.5% to over 16% but averaged around 14.3%. Test weights were 60-61 pounds per bushel. Derek Foote at Hudson said Macksville was the only elevator at Stafford County Flour Mills that had received wheat this week. “The rain (Friday and Saturday) kind of stopped it,” he said. Tractors were spotted cutting northeast of Great Bend on Monday and a Pawnee County farmer had hope to be cutting wheat Tuesday. However, the Pawnee County Co-op hadn’t seen any wheat. At the Great Bend Coop, Operations Manager Dennis Neeland said they have only seen a couple thousand bushels thus far. With spotty cutting now, farmers are saying they will be harvesting come this weekend, weather permitting. And it has been the weather that has been the story, Neeland said. “To say it’s wet out there is an understatement.” All the recent rains and flooding may have done a number on the wheat, he said, adding they may have killed off much of the crop.
Source: U.S. Wheat Associates