Trump, Biden debate source of billions in aid to farmers

President Trump took credit for billions of dollars in trade war payments to U.S. farmers during the final presidential debate on Thursday. "I just gave $28 billion to our farmers," said Trump. "Taxpayers' money," interjected Democratic nominee Joe Biden in the only reference to agriculture, lasting less than a minute, in the two debates between the candidates.

It’s early, but China is No. 1 buyer of U.S. corn

Thanks to a buying spree, China is far and away the top customer for U.S. corn six weeks into the marketing year, said chief executive Ryan LeGrand of the U.S. Grains Council on Thursday. Its purchases of 10.4 million tonnes for delivery during 2020/21 are twice as large as sales to date to Mexico, usually the No. 1 importer.

Ethanol and China are flash points for Trump and Biden campaigns

President Trump "sold out ethanol to Big Oil" by handing out dozens of exemptions from the ethanol mandate, said Iowa farmer Pam Johnson, speaking for the Biden campaign, during a discussion of the agricultural platforms of the presidential candidates on Tuesday. "We haven't abandoned the RFS and we aren't going to — ever," retorted Trump representative Sam Clovis.

Farmers doubt China will meet phase-one target for ag imports

The “phase one” Sino-U.S. trade agreement called for a doubling or tripling of U.S. ag exports to China, but with four months left in the year more farmers than not are skeptical the sales bonanza will be realized, according to a Purdue University poll released on Tuesday. There is reason for …

Perdue tempers optimism on ‘phase one’ ag sales to China

Five weeks after saying he was hopeful China would import $36.6 billion of U.S. food, agricultural and seafood products this year, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue is less certain the target will be met. A spate of sales to China during August and September has raised hopes in farm country that the goal, set in the "phase one" trade agreement, would be met despite a slow start.

WTO membership is essential, say farm and agribusiness groups

The WTO may need reform, but there is no question the United States should be part of the international body, said five dozen farm and agribusiness groups in a letter to the Trump administration. "As long as exports are important to U.S. agriculture, WTO membership will be essential as well," said the groups.

Ten days in a row for soybean sales to China

Exporters sold nearly 2.7 million tonnes of U.S. soybeans in the first half of this month for delivery to China, said the USDA on Thursday. A "significant" sale was reported on each of the 10 business days beginning on Sept. 3, said the Foreign Agricultural Service.

Perdue hopeful China will meet ‘phase one’ trade targets

China has "really stepped up" its purchases of U.S. farm exports in recent weeks, said Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue on Monday, and he is hopeful of the sales bonanza promised in the "phase one" agreement that de-escalated the Sino-US trade war. "They are saying... the right things about their desire to fulfill their commitment. I'm hopeful they will."

Trump failed on trade and ethanol, says Democratic farm forum

Rural America, and farmers in particular, voted overwhelmingly for President Trump in 2016 but have suffered rather than benefitted for it, said speakers on a  "farmers and ranchers roundtable" organized by the Biden-Harris campaign. The forum, held 10 days ahead of the traditional fall campaign kickoff of Labor Day, criticized Trump for using agriculture as a pawn in the Sino-U.S. trade war and labeled him weak on ethanol.(No paywall)

U.S. and EU resolve lobster tensions

The EU will remove tariffs on imports of live lobsters and frozen lobster products from the United States under an agreement that calls for lower U.S. tariffs on a variety of European goods, including prepared meals. "These tariff reductions are the first U.S.-EU negotiated reductions in duties in more than two decades," said a joint statement by EU and U.S. trade officials.