Trump Says He Will Seek U.S. Trade Accord with Brazil
Reuters – 07/30/2019
President Donald Trump on Tuesday said he will pursue a U.S. trade agreement with Brazil, suggesting a friendly relationship with President Jair Bolsonaro could help lower trade barriers between the two biggest economies in the Americas. “We’re going to work on a free trade agreement with Brazil,” Trump told reporters at the White House, without giving details. Trump raised the possibility of a trade deal as U.S. Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross addressed business leaders in Sao Paulo ahead of a Wednesday meeting with Bolsonaro in Brasilia. The United States and Brazil, which exchanged more than $100 billion in goods and services last year, have drawn closer since Bolsonaro took office in January after the far-right former army captain’s insurgent election campaign modeled after Trump’s. “Brazil is a big trading partner. They charge us a lot of tariffs, but other than that we love the relationship,” Trump told reporters, citing what he called his great relationship with Brazil and praising Bolsonaro.
USMCA Trade Deal Will Happen, Proponents Say
Capital Journal – 07/30/2019
Though the United States has not yet ratified the United States Mexico Canada Agreement, its proponents are confident it will. The U.S. reached agreement with Mexico and Canada in the renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement in November. Mexico ratified the USMCA in June, and it appears Canada is making progress toward that, as well. However, in the U.S., Republicans and Democrats continue to debate parts of the agreement and Congress recessed Sunday, July 28, without taking action…Mexico and Canada also are significant export markets for North Dakota’s manufactured goods, said Matt Gardner, North Dakota Manufacturing Council’s director of government affairs. North Dakota exports $5.8 billion in goods to Canada annually, including 9percent agricultural, 4 percent chemical and 7 percent equipment and machinery. The bulk of the exports — 74 percent — is energy, Gardner said. Ratification of the USMCA is important not only to the economic success of the commodities, including wheat, but also for the tone the agreement sets, said Neal Fisher, North Dakota Wheat Commission administrator.
“It is a very big agreement between three trading partners,” Fisher said. “This is a demonstration to the world, as we look at trade, how we work with our friends and neighbors.”
Bigger Trade Package Seen as a ‘Bridge’ to Better Times
Agri-Pulse – 07/31/2019
The latest version of the Trump administration’s trade assistance for farmers may provide some growers with more money than than their actual losses from the ongoing trade war with China, and supporters of the aid package say it’s vital to helping many produces to survive until better times. The payments will be especially valuable to producers who are struggling with a drop in prices since last year or who had trouble planting crops this spring, economists say. Many Midwest growers will still lose money this year, according to a new University of Illinois analysis. Signup for the 2019 Market Facilitation Program began Monday, and interest has been brisk, according to Bill Northey, USDA’s undersecretary for farm production and conservation programs. Some economic analyses suggest that the 2018 MFP may have overcompensated producers for the impact of China’s retaliatory tariffs, which was the stated purpose of the temporary program. Northey said the 2019 version is intended to compensate producers for both tariffs and non-tariff trade barriers going back a decade. Read More
Wheat Quality Council Tour Happy With Region’s Outlook
Capital Journal– 07/30/2019
Despite a cold, wet spring that delayed planting, this year’s spring wheat yields will be similar to last year, according to estimates by Wheat Quality Council Hard Spring Wheat and Durum Tour participants. This year’s spring wheat yield will average 43.1 bushels per acre, members of the tour estimated. Last year, tour participants estimated average spring wheat yields of 41.1 bushels per acre. The annual Hard Spring Wheat and Durum Tour of North Dakota and Minnesota fields began Tuesday, July 23, and concluded Thursday, July 25. During the week, 62 millers, bakers, wheat buyers and other people interested in learning about the quality and quantity of this year’s spring wheat traveled the states, calculating yields with a formula devised by land grant university researchers. The tour participants scouted 371 wheat and durum fields across North Dakota and northwest Minnesota during the three days. While estimates of spring wheat yields are higher this year than last, durum estimates are lower. This year, durum yields will average 32 bushels per acre, 7.3 bushels lower than last year, tour participants estimated.
Oregon: A Little Heat Brings the Wheat
The Dalles Chronicle – 07/30/2019
Cody Darnielle has been hopping this week, finally. The wheat elevator operator for Mid Columbia Producers, Inc. in the Dalles said he had 123 trucks pull through on Monday, 130 on Tuesday and 132 on Wednesday. The elevator took in 64,000 bushels on Wednesday, about enough to fill half a barge at a value of $396,800 at $6.20 a bushel. Winter and spring wheat crops account for about 275,000 acres in Gilliam, Sherman and Wasco counties, creating a huge economic engine for the area. Lower temperatures and a wetter spring have delayed harvest by some 20 plus days. “We’re late,” Darnielle said. “Usually we get started the last week of June… It’s going to be the end of August, early September to get done.” Normally, hot temperatures in late spring and early summer usher the wheat kernel to maturity and dry it. Moisture in the wheat must be under 12 percent before it is accepted at the grain elevator. Low moisture helps prevent bug problems in storage. While yields are yet to be determined, retired Oregon State University Extension Agent Sandy Macnab expected bushels-per-acre to be around average. “The late snow hurt us a bit, but at least it stayed cooler than usual. I think that helped as far as the yields.”
Source: U.S. Wheat Associates