The long-running drought that covers more than half of the continental United States — mostly west of the Mississippi — worsened in the central and southern Plains last week, the heart of U.S. winter wheat production, said the government's Drought Monitor on Thursday. In Kansas, the No. 1 winter wheat state, 31 percent of the crop was rated as being in poor or very poor condition.
U.S. and Chinese negotiators may be within four weeks of resolving the Sino-U.S. trade war, said President Trump on Thursday. Trump said the nations are working on a comprehensive agreement. “And whether it’s our farmers or our technology people, all of them will be really happy.”
China will remain the world’s largest soybean importer in coming years even if the trade war with the United States is not settled, but it won’t be buying as much of the oilseed, said USDA analysts on Wednesday.
A year ago, half of the U.S. sorghum crop was exported. This year, only a quarter of it is headed overseas due to the U.S.-China trade war, which means the sorghum stockpile will double by the time the new crop is ready for harvest this summer. USDA's monthly Grains: World Markets and Trade report says the sorghum inventory will be the largest in 13 years.
The Trump administration could pay substantial amounts to soybean growers under its $12-billion plan to shield U.S. agriculture from harm in the tariff war with China, said the head of a University of Missouri think tank on Thursday.
The U.S. sorghum industry said it is a victim, not a perpetrator, of the broad trade dispute between China and the United States that threatens billions of dollars of farm exports. China's Commerce Ministry announced on Tuesday that anti-dumping deposits of 179 percent will be levied on U.S. sorghum as part of an investigation that began when President Trump put tariffs on imports of solar panels and washing machines from China.
Days after China began an anti-dumping investigation of imported U.S. sorghum, its Ministry of Commerce met with domestic companies to discuss possible anti-dumping and anti-subsidy reviews of U.S. soybeans, reported Bloomberg.
With an eye toward higher rural income and farm productivity, China issued a policy statement calling for a modernized farm sector by 2035. China also announced an investigation into whether U.S. sorghum is being sold at unfairly low prices on the Chinese market.
China is the world’s No. 1 sorghum importer, and its appetite for livestock feed is driving up U.S. sorghum prices, according to the USDA’s monthly Grain: World Markets and Trade report.
The global stockpile of grain will swell by 5 percent during 2016/17 because farmers are growing grain faster than the world can consume it, says the International Grains Council. "Grains inventories in the major exporters are predicted to grow to a seven-year high, while those in China could reach 200 million tons for the first time in 17 years," says the monthly IGC Grain Market Report.
U.S. soybean plantings will be record-large for the second year in a row in 2017 if growers follow through on their stated plans, said Farm Futures magazine. In an email survey, farmers said they intend to plant more soybeans, cotton and sorghum next year while cutting back on corn and wheat.
Last November, the EPA cancelled the registration of the pesticide sulfoxaflor, a step required by a U.S. appeals court decision. However, the agency has now granted an emergency exemption sought by the Texas Department of Agriculture for use of sulfoxaflor this year against the sugarcane aphid on up to 3 million acres of sorghum, said Agri-Pulse.
Farmers say they'll plant the third-largest amount of corn grown since World War II and the third-highest soybean area on record, superlatives that disguise some of the bad news in the annual Prospective Plantings report.
In its first Crop Progress report of the year, the USDA rated 59 percent of the winter wheat crop in good or excellent condition, 15 points higher than a year ago.
After a three-year surge in exports that boosted the popularity of sorghum, demand is forecast to fall and the feed grain is headed for the smallest harvest since 2012, says economist Dan O'Brien of Kansas State U.
U.S. farm exports will slump this year to $125 billion, the lowest level since 2010, due to strong competition from other exporting nations and reduced demand for imports, said the Agriculture Department in a quarterly update.
Long overshadowed by corn in the United States and used mostly as livestock feed, sorghum is getting its turn as the wonder grain of cuisine, says the Guardian. The Hugo's restaurant chain in California substitutes sorghum for rice in many dishes on its menu, which declares, "Introducing sorghum: the drought-tolerant, low-water-usage, wonder grain."
China is scaling back on its imports of feedstuffs such as corn, sorghum and the ethanol co-product distillers dried grains (DDGs), with U.S. sorghum exports hit the hardest, says the monthly Grain: World Markets and Trade report. USDA slashed its forecast of sorghum imports by China by 30 percent, or 4 million tonnes.