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High Heat Zone
We're again planning to host an update seminar this fall, but make it more of a summit with additional features and speakers: from agronomic to marketing to tax planning. Stayed tuned and we'll update as those details become finalized. In the meantime, important & interesting news has been gleaned specifically for you!
This past weekend was Walla Walla's version of 3 on 3 basketball tournament, Peach Basket Classic celebrated it's 25th year! I helped with the 'monitoring' of games...it never ceases to amaze me how heat clouds the judgement of all involved. Parents are often the worst offenders, and they're in the shade under the tent! Players reflect their coaches and parents, good and bad...chances are, little Johnny or Jennie aren't playing beyond the high school level, yet some would have you believe the second coming of Jordan or LeBron or whomever is at hand. I'm thankful it was only in the low 90s on Sunday!
2018 Farm Bill - As expected the Senate announced their conferees last week prior to adjourning for their summer break. Nine Senators were named as conferees, 5 Republicans and 4 Democrats. Prior to recess, the Senate passed four appropriation bills bundled together for $154.2 billion for departments including Agriculture, matching funding levels of the House's version of the bill. Conferee members are expected to meet and begin the negotiation process upon their return to DC from their current break.
2018 Harvest Price Discovery - This past Wednesday was the start of the month long discovery period of many crops grown in our region. Only 3 days trading was captured, but each day was a higher close than the day prior.
Affordable Care - At a recent Farm Managers and Rural Appraisers workshop, an ag economist shared how much of an impact health insurance expenses are having on farm family cost of living, which ultimately ties to farm debt repayment. Costs have doubled for health insurance, which is not news to the readers, for many this becomes an input cost assessment for the operation...
Dos and don'ts after a wildfire - Hopefully this is not something you'll ever need nor someone close to you, mostly commonsense reminders....
Endangered Species Act - There has been discussion, interest and now movement in the past couple of years to 'update' the Endangered Species Act. Senator Barrasso (WY) has released ESA amendments of 2018 discussion draft for this very purpose. Pretty good support exists to have dialogue regarding, comment period closes on September 24, 2018.
Falling numbers - I know the unpopularity of this subject matter, but I must be prudent and advise accordingly. We've had an exhaustive discussion regarding falling numbers two years ago with the 2016 harvest; there have been no changes in what the insured is required to report - net bushels. Thankfully, the magnitude appears to be much smaller in scope with the 2018 harvest than what we experienced in 2016. If any grade or summary sheet identifies numbers below 300, we must use the chart below for 'net bushel' calculation. For reference, I've included the language from county actuarials (Special Provisions of Insurance):
Landlords - Anyone have a lease expiring or needing to 'wow' a landlord? Perhaps this next article is for you...
Markets - In the game of tic tac toe, three in a row was a win...we've had 3 straight weeks of higher closes than the week prior and positive steps in the correct direction. I anticipate the amount of SWW bushels coming in will pressure our prices near term. The worldly news on wheat production should continue to provide more support for stronger prices - Germany, France and Black Sea region all have downgraded production in the recent days. Below is a graph of wheat exchange from Paris (Matif) for Dec milling wheat reflecting the price climb.
The corn futures rally has provided strength to the ethanol market for it's strongest close in two months. USDA releases another monthly report this Friday, analysts are expecting USDA to reduce worldwide wheat yields and corresponding carryout...I'm holding my breath.
Update seminars - We're again planning to host an update seminar this fall, but make it more of a summit with additional features and speakers from agronomic to marketing to tax planning. Stayed tuned and we'll update as those details become finalized.
Weather - The drought map appears unchanged from the week prior, which isn't surprising given the heat that was present.
Short range forecast for temperatures certainly shows direction of the jet stream:
Crop Comments -
- 8/3/2018 Knox County, IL: Virtually all the corn around here was planted April 21-28. It all looks good at 55 mph. So I decided to check a random field in the neighborhood. Class 1 black prairie soil, worked ground, no residue, very loose and bone dry down to 4", 35,000 ears/acre. Couldn't tell you the brand or the variety, but it yield checked at 184 bu/ac. Oops...
- 8/2/2018 Floyd County, IA: Feast or famine here. Very wet March through first half of July. Then the rain just about stopped. About a tenth from last evening's thunderstorm. The roots had no need to go down earlier. Should be interesting with three to four foot tall corn tasseled.
- 8/2/2018 Fillmore County, MN: We have been fairly wet this far this year. We had a late start at planting, but the heat has gotten the crops caught up. There looks to be great potential with just a few wet, compaction areas.
- 8/2/2018 Madison County, OH: Overall crops look excellent in our area. Most areas have received timely rains all year. A few areas of isolated dryness.
- 8/2/2018 Lake Of The Woods County, MN: Finally some accuracy! But, only after the spring wheat tour revealed the truth out here in North Dakota. Did USDA, or should I say their drive by crop condition reporters, think the drought of 2017 was going to be eliminated by a month of timely rains? Late May and June rains got us off to a good start, but a mostly hot, dry July, with the exception of pockets that received timely thunderstorms, has dried out. The latest drought monitor is way off, it shows most of North Dakota out of drought...almost laughable. Soybeans and corn are suffering huge now, rain needs to come quick now to at least salvage an average crop, the big one is gone.
- 8/2/2018 Wallace County, KS: Western ks, rains are spotty, when you do stone it's a flood with hail to go around for everyone. Most crops look fair at best due to hail in every storm. Some guys talking about giving up after a life time on the same place. We all need a little better luck.
- 8/2/2018 Marshall County, IL: We have been in what many, including myself, thought was the garden spot of the Nation this year. Well if this is correct, there will be no record national yield this year. Tip back is the worst I’ve seen. Ears that were 40 long are now 28-32. All varieties, all companies. Yields will be 10% off of 2017.
- 8/2/2018 Dallas County, IA: Crops looks decent but sure could use a drink! Driest July I can remember with only .4 in of rain all month.
- 8/1/2018 Polk County, IA: Central Iowa missed another "chance" of rain and crops are starting to show it. After a month of nothing but an occasional light shower at best, corn on lighter soils is starting to fire and beans vary in height from knee high to 36". Certainly worse than an average year. How the crop finishes out is up in the air, but with rain chances slim to none for the next week and temps back in the 90's, it can only go downhill.
- 7/31/2018 Richland County, WI: Have been a garden spot all summer. corn looks great from the road but no consistency in the field lots of tip back looks average /poor. Bean still looking good but have no chance at out yielding current price. On the bright side free government cheese coming to a soup line near you! Good luck.
Until next time,
Things turn out for the best when we make the best of the way things turn out. ~The Furrow
McGregor Risk Management Services, LLC
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