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SORGHUM E-Notes | May 25, 2018

SORGHUM E-Notes | May 25, 2018

SORGHUM E-Notes | May 25, 2018

The voice of the sorghum industry


Sorghum Checkoff Announces Leadership Sorghum Class IV 
The Sorghum Checkoff announced the new members of Leadership Sorghum Class IV. Leadership Sorghum is a program hosted by the Sorghum Checkoff designed to develop the next generation of sorghum leaders and advocates. Fourteen farmers from five states have been selected to participate in the program’s fourth class: John Bergkamp – Garden Plain, Kansas, Jon Berning – Scott City, Kansas, Dustin Borden – Gruver, Texas, Michael Brooks – Walsh, Colorado, Matthew Davis – Manhattan, Kansas, Jaden DeVore – Cheney, Kansas, Jace Gibbs – Dighton, Kansas, David Junker – McCook, Nebraska, Larry Kendig – Osborne, Kansas, Kevin Pshigoda – Perryton, Texas, Cole Rohr – Quinter, Kansas, Tony Watson – Healy, Kansas and Matthew Winters – Canyon, Texas. Through both hands-on and classroom-style education, participants will gain an understanding of how sorghum moves through the value chain, how checkoffs and interest groups interact on behalf of the industry and what the future holds for the crop. Leadership Sorghum also provides professional development training and networking opportunities. For more information about the Leadership Sorghum program, click here.

Trade Talks with China Continue 
Last week, National Sorghum Producers welcomed news that the 178 percent tariff and anti-dumping and countervailing duty investigations were dropped. Trade talks between the two countries continued this week, showing signs that China has promised to help reduce the trade surplus by purchasing more U.S. agriculture and energy products. There are many questions being raised about those logistics, and details around the timeline and amount of increased purchasing are still looming. USDA officials have been working closely with the Trump Administration to provide information on potential products that China could buy. President Trump is pushing a $25 billion increase on U.S. agricultural products. NSP Remains engaged in these discussions and is cautiously optimistic, knowing there are a lot of ups and downs possible as negotiations continue the 1st week of June.

House Farm Bill Moves into June 
House Agriculture Committee Chairman Mike Conaway (R-TX) and GOP Leadership will make a second attempt to pass the farm bill in June. Chairman Conaway has stated the farm bill will move forward with its original text under the motion to reconsider. Last week, the bill fell short of needed support from the Freedom Caucus in light of unsettled immigration debates. In hopes of securing the needed votes from Republicans, House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (R-LA) has announced that the second attempt to pass H.R.2 will take place after Congressman Bob Goodlatte’s (R-VA) immigration bill is considered.

Senate Agriculture Appropriations Bill Approved
The Senate Agriculture Appropriations Subcommittee marked up and approved its version of the FY 19 Agriculture Appropriations bill earlier today. The bill places no limitations on funding for MAP and FMD, MAP will continue to receive $200 million in FY 19. FMD’s funding of $34.5 million is contingent upon a new Farm Bill being enacted by September 30. If the Farm Bill is not enacted by the end of this fiscal year (September 30), FMD will lose its baseline and will have to receive discretionary funding until a new Farm Bill is completed.

NAFTA Could Go Into Next Congress 
The NAFTA 2.0 negotiations continue after nine months of discussions. House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-WI) has extended the deadline to notify Congress of intent to sign the agreement until the end of May. This announcement comes after the May 17 deadline passed before the three countries could reach an agreement on autos, agriculture, intellectual property and other subjects. The Administration continues to press forward with negotiations, expressing the intent to pass a deal whether in Congress this year or next.

Export Report
Export sales were strong again this week with Mexico, South Africa and unknown destinations committing to purchase 1.2 million bushels. Shipments also continued with Mexico, South Africa, Taiwan and Vietnam taking delivery of more than 400,000 bushels. Basis at the Gulf was somewhat softer although still significantly higher than before China terminated its investigation. The gap between the basis available at port vessels and country elevators remained wide.

Crop Update
By May 20, 39 percent of this year’s sorghum crop had been planted, up seven percentage points from the week before and up three percentage points from this time last year. Planting is also one percentage point higher than the 5-year average. Both Texas and Arkansas have planted 90 percent of this year’s crop, putting those states well ahead of the 5-year average. Planting was most active in South Dakota, where planting advanced by 25 percentage points. Louisiana reached 95 percent, Missouri 53 percent and Nebraska 39 percent.

Foundation Scholarships Due June 1 
The Bruce Maunder Sorghum Leadership Scholarship, Darrell Rosenow Memorial Scholarship and Sorghum Feed and Food Scholarship are all due June 1 to Foundation Director Larry Lambright. Scholarships can be turned in via email to or postmarked by June 1. More on the scholarships can be found on the National Sorghum Producers website.

Sorghum in the Spotlight: 
China Reopens For U.S. Sorghum, Elating Industry And Shifting Market – U.S. Grains Council
China Eliminates Hefty Duties on U.S. Sorghum – Farm Bureau News
China’s April Sorghum Imports Surged Ahead of Dumping Tariffs: Customs – Reuters
Finding Hope in Water-Sipping Sorghum -HPJ
U.S. Sorghum Ship Switches Destination from Spain Back to Asia – Successful Farming
Sorghum Farmers Breathe Sigh of Relief After China Drops Tariff – KAMC
China Drops Investigations, Top Market for Sorghum Reopens – Ag Net West
Sorghum Industry Makes Some Gains Despite Recent Struggle – KGNC
U.S. Farmers Plow Ahead with Plantings As China Trade War Fears Ebb – Hellenic Shipping News Worldwide

Upcoming Sorghum Events
May 28         NSP office Closed in observance of Memorial Day
June 1          Sorghum Foundation scholarships due
June 5          Nebraska Grain Sorghum Board of Directors Meeting – Lincoln, NE

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.

About Sorghum Notes
Sorghum Notes is a publication of the National Sorghum Producers. NSP represents U.S. sorghum producers and serves as the voice of the sorghum industry from coast to coast through education and legislative and regulatory representation.