Soy stockpile to tumble by one-third by next fall

Three years of bumper crops collided with the Sino-U.S. trade war to create the largest U.S. soybean stockpile ever, a price-depressing 1 billion bushels at the start of this month. But by next Sept. 1, the so-called carry-over will be just two-thirds of its current size, estimated the USDA on Thursday.

USDA, doubling pay limit, offers growers up to $500,000 in disaster aid

Farmers are eligible for up to $500,000 apiece for the hurricanes, wildfires, floods and other disasters they faced in 2018 and this year, including Hurricane Dorian last weekend, said the USDA on Monday, with $3 billion in aid available. As it did in July for Trump tariff payments, the USDA set the maximum disaster payment at double the Congressional limit for farm subsidies.

Heartland would be hit hard by proposal to tighten SNAP eligibility, says report

The Trump administration should withdraw its proposal for tougher eligibility rules for SNAP because of the harmful effects it would have on vulnerable families, said the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation on Thursday. An estimated 1.9 million U.S. households would lose benefits, with four heartland states on the list of nine states facing the largest proportional losses, the group said.

A decade later, food insecurity rate returns to pre-recession level

Some 11.1 percent of U.S. households are food insecure, meaning they did not have enough food at times during 2018 due to a lack of money or other resources, said the USDA on Wednesday. It was the lowest food insecurity rate since 2007, just before the Great Recession drove food stamp enrollment and costs to record highs.

USDA gives growers the chance to switch crop subsidy programs

For the first time since the 2014 farm bill was implemented, the USDA is giving farmers the option of changing enrollment between the insurance-like Agriculture Risk Coverage and the traditionally designed Price Loss Coverage subsidies.

New round of Trump tariff payments is flowing

The USDA began issuing payments to farmers and ranchers on Wednesday in this year’s first round of trade aid to offset the impact of the Sino-U.S. trade war, said Richard Fordyce, head of the Farm Service Agency.

Vacancy at the top of USDA as Perdue gains a full-time deputy for nutrition

After two years with a title that suggested he was a placeholder, Brandon Lipps formally became deputy undersecretary for nutrition at the Agriculture Department on Monday. The Trump administration has not filled the top nutrition post at USDA, so Lipps will continue to run programs such as SNAP and school lunch, as he has since July 2017.

At USDA listening session on heirs property, an emphasis on education and preservation

At a listening session on Wednesday, landowners and advocates spoke to the Department of Agriculture about the importance of reforming how the agency aids heirs property owners. The listening session was convened to collect input on a series of heirs property reforms mandated by the 2018 farm bill.

Subtract China and the soy export market goes flat

The world market for soybeans nearly doubled in a 10-year span, growing at an average 7.5 million tonnes a year through 2018, say USDA analysts in the monthly Oilseeds: World Markets and Trade report. But the go-go days of growth may be over, due to retrenchment in China, the dominant buyer. …

Pulled by western states, U.S. cropland values edge upward

The average value of U.S. cropland is marginally higher this year, but has changed little overall since the collapse of the commodity boom early this decade, said the USDA’s annual Land Values report on Tuesday. Higher values west of the Great Plains, led by a 5.4 percent increase in …