USDA Chief Economist Says Farm Bill Will Affect Income, Not Plantings

February 26, 2014 | Government

The U.S. Department of Agriculture increased its estimate of U.S. agricultural exports to $142.6 billion for fiscal 2014, up $5.6 billion from November's estimate and $1.5 billion higher than the previous record level in fiscal year 2013.

In his annual address Feb. 20 at USDA's annual Agricultural Outlook Forum being held in Arlington, Va., USDA Chief Economist Joseph Glauber noted that the forecast varied by product.

"The forecast for grain and feed exports is boosted $3.2 billion from November to $31.3 billion on greater volumes of wheat, corn and feeds and fodders," he said.

"Oilseed and product exports are forecast at $31.4 billion, up $2.5 billion, driven by record soybean and...

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ADM Names Juan R. Luciano President

February 25, 2014

DECATUR, Ill.--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- Archer Daniels Midland Company (NYSE: ADM) announced today the promotion of Juan R. Luciano to president, effective immediately. He is the 12th person to serve as president in the company’s 112-year history and assumes this role in addition to his position as chief operating officer.Luciano oversees the commercial and production activities of ADM’s corn, oilseeds, and agricultural services businesses, as well as its research, project-management and risk-management functions. He will continue to report to ADM Chairman and CEO Patricia A. Woertz.“Today’s appointment recognizes the excellent results Juan has achieved over the last three years as... [Read More]

Lower Mississippi River Back Open After Oil Spill

February 24, 2014

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — The Coast Guard reopened a normally bustling stretch of the lower Mississippi River to ships and boaters Monday, two days after an oil spill closed the major inland waterway between Baton Rouge and New Orleans.

About 31,500 gallons of light crude oil spilled into the river after a tank barge pushed by the towboat Hannah C. Settoon collided with another towboat Saturday afternoon, officials said.

At least 30 vessels had been waiting for the river to reopen, Coast Guard Petty Officer Matthew Schofield said of the spill near Vacherie, about 50 west of New Orleans by land.

No one was hurt, all vessels were subsequently secured and there were no reports of any wildlife...

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Farming Groups Say Chipotle’s “Farmed and Dangerous” Misleads Viewers

February 24, 2014 | Commerce

Feb. 22--Wisconsin farmers aren't finding much humor in a new television comedy that has exploding cows and an underlying serious message critical of large-scale agriculture.

Produced by the restaurant chain Chipotle Mexican Grill, the comedy series "Farmed and Dangerous" satirizes the lengths to which corporate agribusiness and its image-makers go to create a positive image of industrial agriculture, Chipotle says.

The first episode of the show, which began this past week on Hulu and Hulu Plus, focused on farmers planning to feed cows petroleum pellets -- a move meant to boost profits by lowering costs but which backfires when a cow explodes.

Later episodes begin with snippets of text...

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DuPont, University of Missouri and USDA-ARS Collaborate on Soil Mapping

February 24, 2014 | Government

The public-private effort aims to enhance sustainable crop production through field and crop modeling that targets the specific soil, climatic, water-shed and production conditions within producers' fields with real-time information. The three-year exclusive agreement among DuPont Pioneer - the global seed and advanced plant genetics business of DuPont - the University of Missouri and USDA-ARS will bring together the respective strengths of each party in precision agriculture sensors and soil mapping, including the characterization of soil types, topography and water-sheds. Through a unique computerized process offered by DuPont that uses the latest high resolution technology, the...

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Lockout at the Port of Vancouver Reaches First Anniversary

February 24, 2014

Feb. 23--It's no anniversary to celebrate.

Nevertheless, Thursday will mark a year since United Grain Corp. at the Port of Vancouver locked out up to 44 union dockworkers after a simmering contract dispute came to a boil.

The fallout was extensive. Some of the impacts have ended or are quieter. Others, including legal proceedings, continue to ripple.

In October, the standoff appeared to ease when the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the Pacific Northwest Grain Handlers Association publicly said they'd renewed negotiations over a labor contract and that the talks had been productive.

As the one-year anniversary of the lockout nears, neither party will comment in detail about...

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River closed at New Orleans after barge spills oil

February 24, 2014

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A 65-mile stretch of the Mississippi River remained closed at New Orleans on Monday following a weekend collision that resulted in crude oil spilling from a barge.

Authorities involved in the cleanup and investigation planned a Monday morning conference call as they worked on estimates of how much oil spilled and when the river would re-open, a Coast Guard spokesman, Petty Officer Bill Colclough, said.

At last count Sunday night, the river closure affected 26 vessels — 16 waiting to go downriver and 10 waiting to go upriver.

Officials reported only a light sheen following the accident but river traffic was halted to avoid contaminating passing vessels and to...

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4B Components Ltd. Announces the Formation of a New Division

February 24, 2014

4B Components Ltd. Morton IL. announces the formation of a new division, Midwest Plastic Moldings Ltd. Located a few miles north of the US operation’s headquarters, Midwest Plastic Moldings was formed after the company purchased the assets of Midwest Plastics Inc, a premier manufacturer of custom injection molded products for the agricultural and industrial markets. “as demand for our material handling products has grown, this new division will enable us to better meet our customers’ needs for high quality plastic elevator buckets produced from HDPE, Nylon and Urethane and other custom injection molded agricultural products.” Says Johnny Wheat, 4B USA Senior Vice President, “With a...

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AFIA Supports New AMS/FDA Animal Feed Export Certification Program

February 20, 2014 | Government

The American Feed Industry Association is pleased with the U.S. Department of Agriculture and U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s new agreement that designates USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service (AMS) as the authority to certify animal feed and pet food products for export to foreign countries.

“The agreement is a result of AFIA’s efforts to inform USDA’s Foreign Agricultural Service about several issues that industry has had exporting to various markets, such as Brazil’s requirement for Good Manufacturing Practice certifications and products under the implementation of China’s AQSIQ Decree 118,” said Gina Tumbarello, AFIA manager of international trade. “The need to find a feed...

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Oliver Manufacturing Moves Into New Offices

February 19, 2014

LA JUNTA, CO:  On February 17th, Oliver Manufacturing’s Sales, Engineering, R&D, Customer Service, IT, and administrative staff moved into the newly constructed Oliver office building attached to their production facility.  The approximately $3.5 million building was design by Matt Schindler of WDM Architects in Wichita, Kansas.  The nearly 15,000 square foot facility is designed in a modern, industrial style that includes touches of antique industrial elements that “embraces our heritage, while exemplifying our culture of innovation,” said President/CEO Brian Burney.  The building features 11 closed offices, 27 open office spaces, 2 conference rooms, a board room, 2...

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