The United States is awash in soybeans, the result of the trade war with China and a string of bumper crops. But although farmers were expected to respond by planting more corn this year while cutting back sharply on soybeans, it's no longer clear that this rush to corn will actually occur.
U.S. and Chinese officials opened their second consecutive week of negotiations to resolve the countries' trade war on Tuesday with President Trump saying the "very complex talks...are going very well." Trump told reporters at the White House, "We're asking for everything that anybody has ever even suggested. These are not just, you know, 'let's sell corn or let's do this.' It's going to be selling corn, but a lot of it, a lot more than anyone thought possible."
The White House is looking for additional progress in negotiations this week to resolve the Sino-U.S. trade war even as it cautions that “much work remains.” Agriculture is among the structural issues under discussion, according to the administration.
For the third day in a row, the USDA confirmed a large sale of U.S. soybeans to China, this time 586,000 tonnes. With the purchase, reported by private exporters on Wednesday, China bought 3.8 million tonnes of soybeans in three days and is well on its way to the 5 million tonnes promised during a White House meeting last week.
The USDA confirmed on Monday the sale of 612,000 tonnes (2.25 million bushels) of U.S. soybeans to China, a small part of the 5 million tonnes promised to President Trump last week and much less than traders suggested over the weekend. China used to be the largest customer in the world for U.S. soybeans but retaliatory tariffs have reduced sales to one-eighth of their usual pace.
In a letter read aloud at the White House, Chinese President Xi Jinping said Beijing will buy more U.S. farm exports, a decision that President Trump hailed on Thursday as a sign of good faith in ongoing negotiations to end the trade war between the nations.
Farm-gate prices for corn and soybeans, the two most widely grown crops in the United States, are stuck in a rut for years to come, said the CBO on Monday in its long-term budget outlook. Farmers will grow near-record corn crops to generate revenue while slowly working down a soybean stockpile …
After six months of tit-for-tat tariffs between China and the United States, American soybean growers called for a speedy end to the trade war on Monday. "This has been a long and costly half-year for farmers and we need stability returned to this market. We cannot withstand another six months," said Kentucky farmer Davie Stephens, president of the American Soybean Association.
Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue announced on Monday the second and final round of $4.8 billion of Trump tariff payments, meaning crop and livestock producers will collect up to $9.6 billion in cash to cushion the impact of the Sino-U.S. trade war. So far, the USDA has sent $2.38 billion in payments to producers of almonds, corn, cotton, dairy, hog, sorghum, soybeans, fresh sweet cherries and wheat.