NSP Joins Ag Organizations in Stressing Importance of Trade
On Jan. 6, 2017, National Sorghum Producers joined 15 other farmer organizations in calling for President-elect Donald Trump and Vice-President-elect Mike Pence to maintain U.S. agricultural trade interest in existing markets as well as expand access to new markets. NSP and the other groups specifically noted the importance of trade with U.S. agriculture’s first, second and third largest export markets–China, Canada and Mexico. Read the full letter here.
A Swarm of Bee Related Activity as Obama Administration Exits
On January 10, 2017, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced the addition of the rusty patched bumble bee to the endangered species list, the first bee species in the continental U.S. to be so listed. The declaration, initially proposed in September, is troubling for the agricultural industry and many other groups. The bee species has been identified from Minnesota east to Maine and south to Tennessee and North Carolina. The USFWS did single out neonicotinoid insecticides as having a potential impact on species decline, while saying the exact cause is uncertain. However, academic researchers and agricultural organizations called the reasoning behind the agency’s conclusions flawed and contrary to information presented in the proposal. Read NSP’s prior comments on the rusty patched bumble bee here.
NSP is also watching for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to soon publish a final rule on the “Proposal to Mitigate the Exposure to Bees from Acutely Toxic Pesticide Products.” This proposal was criticized for including strict restrictions on the use of a broad range of products with little to no evidence of actual risk to managed bees or consideration of mitigating steps and benefits to crop production. Additionally, the EPA is also expected to release preliminary risk assessments for four neonicotinoid active ingredients. While the preliminary risk assessment for imidacloprid will be a full report, the reports for clothianidin, dinotefuran and thiamethoxam will only focus on pollinators.
New Fuel Pathway for Sorghum
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency announced the approval of a fuel pathway filed by Gevo Inc. for the production of butanol for grain sorghum and corn start. The pathway approval applies to both D5 advanced biofuel and D6 renewable fuel renewable identification numbers (RINs). The EPA noted that grain sorghum butanol produced at the company’s Luverne plant achieved a 54.6 percent lifecycle greenhouse gas reduction compared to baseline gasoline. Read the full announcement here.
USGC Releases Sorghum Harvest Quality Report
The U.S. Grains Council recently released the 2016/2017 Sorghum Harvest Quality Report. The report showed 2016 harvest samples were of good quality as the result of favorable growing and harvest conditions, which also led to high yields. The 2016/2017 Sorghum Harvest Quality Report was based on 254 sorghum samples collected in the top nine sorghum-producing states. Read the full report here.
White House Announces 2017 Regulatory System for Biotechnology Products
Last week, the White House announced the final version of the 2017 Update to the Coordinated Framework for the Regulation of Biotechnology, released in partnership by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Food and Drug Administration and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. In a release, the White House pledged the three agencies will continue to engage with stakeholders on the oversight and approval of biotechnology products.
House Ag Committee Adds New Members
The House Agriculture Committee added six new Republicans and five new Democrats to its roster. Republican additions include Rep. Jodey Arrington (R-Texas), Rep. Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Rep. Don Bacon (R-Neb.), Rep. James Comer (R-Ky.), Rep. Neal Dunn (R-Fla.) and Rep. John Faso (R-N.Y.). Democratic additions include Rep. Jimmy Panetta (D-Calif.), Rep. Dwight Evans (D-Penn.), Rep. Al Lawson (D-Fla.), Rep. Darren Soto (D-Fla.) and Rep. Tom O’Halleran (D-Ariz.).
Commodity Classic Early Registration Ends Today
The early registration discount for the 2017 Commodity Classic ends today, Jan. 12, 2017. Register today to attend the largest farmer-focused, farmer-led event. The 2017 Commodity Classic runs March 2-4, 2017, in San Antonio, Texas.
USDA Bumps Sorghum Yields in WASDE Report
The U.S. Department of Agriculture increased the national average yield for sorghum to 77.9 bushels per acre for the 2016/17 marketing year in the January World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report, up from 76.5 bushels per acre projected in December and last year’s record 76 bushels per acre. Read the full report here.
After a couple of slow weeks, export sales resumed a steady pace with China, Indonesia and Japan committing to purchase almost 600,000 bushels. Shipments were also very strong with China and Indonesia taking delivery of 7.1 million bushels. Gulf basis was firm with sorghum for January and February delivery trading at 1.02 percent of the price of corn.
Sorghum in the Spotlight:
Upcoming Sorghum Events
Jan. 16-18 Cover Your Acres, Oberlin, Kansas
Jan. 17 Brownfield Ag Conference, Brownfield, Texas
Jan. 18 New Mexico Sorghum Association Meeting, Clovis, New Mexico
Jan. 24-25 No-Till on the Plains, Salina, Kansas
Jan. 25-26 Nebraska Grain Sorghum Producers – 2017 Sorghum Symposium, Grand Island, Nebraska
Jan. 30-Feb. 2 NSP DC Fly-In/Leadership Sorghum, Washington, DC
Jan. 31 2017 K-State Sorghum School, Colby, Kansas
Feb. 1 2017 K-State Sorghum School, Wichita, Kansas
Feb. 2 2017 K-State Sorghum School, Concordia, Kansas
Feb. 3 2017 K-State Sorghum School, Iola, Kansas
Feb. 8 Kansas Commodity Classic, Manhattan, Kansas
Feb.23-24 Agricultural Outlook Forum, Arlington, Virginia
For a full view of calendar events, visit the NSP website calendar.
Market News – To view this week’s Gulf export grain report, click here.
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