Today, the stupidity is brought to us by Yahoo!
New York (AFP) – US corn and soybean crops could break records this year, but for farmers the bounty has a dark side: falling prices and a logistics nightmare getting crops to market.
“It is not an exact science but when we look at the fields, it looks like it is going to be a big crop,” said John Reifsteck, a corn and soybean farmer in Champaign, Illinois, a Midwest farm belt state.
Reifsteck estimated his corn crop could be as much as 15 percent higher than last year’s.
The US Department of Agriculture is forecasting record crops this year for corn and soybeans, the two largest US crops in terms of production. Unless there is a devastating freeze or torrential rains before the harvest ends, corn production is projected at 366 million tonnes and soybeans at 106.5 million tonnes.
The article then goes on to describe problems, most of which are not related to farmers, but, rather the people the farmers sell the crops to. Farmers don’t care if the trains are running on time, or not. But, Yahoo is on the verge of discovering something any capitalist and all farmers already know …….
Once all these logistics challenges are dealt with, US farmers face another problem: a drop in revenues.
With the prospect of abundant harvests, buyers have pushed prices into a freefall. The corn futures contract recently slid below $3.50 a barrel on the Chicago Board of Trade, well below the $8 level it fetched in 2012, a year when crops were stressed by drought.
For all US farmers, the USDA is forecasting about a 14 percent drop in farm-related income in the government’s current fiscal year that ends September 30.
Boy!!! They’re almost there!!! It’s weird, but, it seems anytime anything in demand increases in supply, the price drops!!! The more corn available, the lower the price!!! It works that way for soybeans, too!!!! Weird, I know!!!
It may help them if they would come to learn that corn isn’t sold by the barrel. Now, corn squeezens can be, but, that’s a different story.
Further, Yahoo doesn’t seem to understand there’s a difference between farmers’ income, and farm related income. Our farmers’ income is a sub-set of farm related income, and they may or may not have a decrease in income simply because farm related income may decrease. In fact, I don’t expect farmers’ income, nationally, to decrease from the corn and soybean harvests. At least, not the smart ones.
If they have silos, the farmers will put much of their harvest up in them and wait for the prices to climb back up. They’ll make a killing. The ones on a shoe-string budget, will have to sell their crops, and hope their increase in yield makes up for the decrease in the prices.
But, it’s always been this way.
As documented here and many other places, the US and the globe frequently break records in crop production. It’s been going on since crops were first planted.
The thing about farming is to farm better than your neighbor, which doesn’t necessarily mean having a better yield. Yield is just a part of it. A big part, but, only one part. There’s seed cost, fertilizer, equipment, fuel, ….. etc…. etc….
Other than that stuff, it was a pretty good article ……. /sarc
But, there were some things of note. Early in the article it had this to say …..
Rail problems also have affected grain shippers, especially in several northern states on the Canadian border.
An exceptionally severe winter snarled transportation, and the growing volume of shale oil produced in North Dakota being transported by train has weighed on freight service to grain shippers.
Since October 2013, the rail freight service for grain “has been inadequate, characterized by long delays, missed shipments, burgeoning backlogs, and higher costs,” Neal told a Senate hearing earlier in September.
Well, sister, it’s not just from the oil produced in North Dakota which is monopolizing the trains’ time. Some folks just north of North Dakota are also producing more and more oil which is being shipped by rail. Why is any of the oil being shipped by rail rather than the safer, cheaper, and more environmentally friendly method of pipeline?
Well, because there’s a bunch of lunatics out there who believe garbage written by people pretending to know something about the subject which they’re writing about.
In some places in the world, their very lives literally depend on food shipped from the US, which gets to port via rail. Thanks, climate nutters!