August takes the sheen off of U.S. corn and soybean crops

The USDA assessment of the condition of the corn and soybean crops nationwide took a beating from derecho damage in Iowa and droughty weather in the Midwest during August, said the USDA on Monday. The Crop Progress report listed 62 percent of corn and 66 percent of soybeans in good or excellent condition, compared to 72 percent of corn and 73 percent of soybeans in those categories at the start of month.

FDA proposes to revoke heart-healthy claim for soy protein

Nearly two decades after it agreed that consumption of soy protein reduced the risk of heart disease, the FDA proposed revocation of the so-called health claim because of new research that questions the relationship. It would be the first time the agency revoked any of the 12 health claims authorized since 1990.

Crop damage unacceptable, says soy group seeking path forward on dicamba

The dicamba "issue" — widespread reports of crop damage from using the weedkiller — "isn't going away, in fact it's only getting worse," said Ron Moore, the American Soybean Association president and an Illinois farmer. "We are committed to establishing both a cause and a path forward ... including what actions need to be taken to assure that soybean farmers can use the product safely without damaging their own or their neighbors’ crops."

Crop tour sees corn, soy crops 1-percent smaller than USDA estimates

The United States is headed for a record-setting soybean crop and the third-largest corn crop on record, although the harvests will be marginally smaller than forecast by USDA, says the Pro Farmer crop tour of seven Farm Belt states that grow the bulk of the crops. The tour, conducted with …

Corn and soybean harvest slows in rain-hit heartland

The U.S. corn harvest is running four percentage points behind normal and the soybean harvest is three points behind the five-year average for late September, said USDA's Crop Progress report. Rainy weather slowed the pace of fieldwork and prompted fear of disease losses that would cut into the value of crops, which are forecast to be record-large.

Corn farmers lead in U.S. adoption of precision agriculture

A USDA study says the largest corn farms, covering more than 4.5 square miles, are the leaders in adopting precision agriculture, which includes yield monitors for GPS mapping of fields, auto-steer controls of planting and harvest equipment, and variable rate applicators.

Floods will cost Louisiana ag at least $110 million

A preliminary estimate by Louisiana State University's AgCenter says the historic flooding will cost the state's ag sector $110 million in lost and reduced-quality crops, increased production costs, and infrastructure damage, The Advertiser reports.

Rural Argentineans say massive increase in glyphosate is making them sick

In Argentina, the use of glyphosate increased 1,000 percent between 1994 and 2010, as soybean farmers fought off resistant weeds, says the BBC. With large amounts of the herbicide still being applied to fields, some experts think that it may be responsible for a surge in health problems among rural residents.

After setting a record, world soybean output stumbles

Global soybean production is down by a sharp 3 percent, with the latest reductions due to weather damage to the crop in Brazil, said the International Grains Council. The Brazil drop helped pull down inventories as the world heads into a new growing season. "Underpinned by demand for soybean products, consumption is seen expanding further, resulting in another season of tightening stocks," says the council's monthly Grain Market Report.

Big ARC payments are temporary cushion against low prices

Corn, soybean and wheat growers would receive significant payments — as high as $80 an acre for corn — under the insurance-like Agriculture Risk Coverage subsidy based on the low commodity prices now forecast, says Ohio State economist Carl Zulauf.

Once the soybean king of Brazil, Maggi becomes its agriculture minister

Farmer-turned-policitian Blairo Maggi, from the powerhouse agricultural state of Mato Grosso, is the new agriculture minister of Brazil under interim President Michel Temer. Maggi is expected to be a strong voice for the farm sector in one of the world's largest producers and exporters, said Reuters.

Two big processors say they won’t buy new GE soybeans

Bunge and Archer Daniels Midland, two of the largest grain processors in the country, say they will not accept delivery of a new genetically engineered soybean strain from Monsanto because of marketing questions, reported Bloomberg. The European Union has not approved the strain, called Roundup Ready 2 Xtend, for import.

Harvest-time rain cuts Argentine soy crop 15 percent

The Argentine weather agency says the late-season rains that swamped the soybean harvest have reduced the crop by 9 million tonnes, or 15 percent, said Reuters.

As growing season opens, winter wheat in strong condition

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.

More public support for climate-change aid to agriculture

A poll of Michigan residents suggests there would be high public support for government assistance to help farmers adapt to climate change, according to three researchers from Michigan State U.

Global soybean crop could match 2014 record

Soybean production around the world "could match last season's record," helping to boost the global stockpile to a new record, said the International Grains Council in a monthly report. Soybean stocks would rise despite a sharp 3 percent climb in consumption that includes larger imports by China, the world's larger buyer.

Corn and soy crops develop faster than usual

After a wet and cold spring that delayed planting, the U.S. corn and soybean crops now are ahead of the usual pace for development, says the weekly Crop Progress report. Some 34 percent of the corn crop is silking, one point ahead of the five-year average and double the rating one year ago. And 41 percent of soybeans are blooming, 2 points ahead of average and 17 points ahead of the 2013 crop for the second week of July.

Corn, wheat and soy dominate crop insurance 

The three most widely planted U.S. crops - corn, soybeans and wheat - account for roughly 68 percent of crop insurance sales, says USDA, a dominating total but smaller than 15 years earlier. Then, the three crops were responsible for 80 percent of acres enrolled in crop insurance. With new types of policies and more crops eligible for coverage, the share held by the three major crops has declined. USDA says pasture, forage and range land zoomed to 48 million acres insured in 2012 compared to zero in 1997.

Startlingly high US corn and soybean yields possible

With continued good weather, U.S. corn and soybean crops could be well above the records now projected for this year, says economist Carl Zulauf of Ohio State University. "The current crop conditions report suggests that yields are likely to be above trend line," Zulauf writes after citing four methods to estimate the potential yields.

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