Trump’s vague plan to boost ethanol has the oil industry threatening to sue
The Trump administration responded to months of farm belt complaints that it was undermining homegrown biofuels by vowing to increase the ethanol mandate, beginning next year, above the 15-billion-gallon-a-year target that is set by law. The oil industry said it would fight a change in rules for the 2020 RFS and hinted at lawsuits to block the initiative.
Meat industry challenges California animal-welfare referendum
Eleven months after Californians approved “cage-free” Proposition 12 in a landslide vote, the meat industry asked a federal court in Los Angeles to overturn the referendum that guarantees farm animals more space to move about.
TODAY’S QUICK HITS
JBS drops ractopamine for hogs (Reuters): With an eye toward pork sales to China, meatpacker JBS USA said it will not buy hogs for slaughter from farmers who use of the growth-promoting drug ractopamine, banned by China, the EU and Russia.
Russia plants more wheat (FAO): Growers in Russia, the No. 1 wheat exporter, are expanding plantings for the 2020 harvest, responding to government policies that encourage exports, while the world reaps a record-large wheat crop this year.
Trade war squashes cranberry exports (NPR): China was a new and booming market for U.S. cranberries until the trade war led to a 40-percent tariff on American cranberries and creating an opening for Canada and Chile, the two other cranberry powers of the world.
High tech down on the farm (CBS News): Chief executive Beth Ford of the dairy cooperative Land O’Lakes says technology, from predictive modeling to satellite imaging, helps producers survive economic stress.
Trade war payments fall short (ABC News): Although President Trump says trade war payments will allow farmers to “make the same sort of money,” a handful of farmers say they have taken backup jobs, such as truck driving, to make up for lost farm income.
ON THE CALENDAR
– Vice President Pence, Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue and Tennessee Gov. Bill Lee visit Tyson Foods beef and pork processing plant, 1 p.m. CT, Goodlettsvile, Tennessee.
– Wall Street Journal holds fourth annual Global Food Forum with government officials and corporate executives as speakers, New York City.
– Signup opens for Dairy Margin Coverage subsidy for 2020 and closes on Dec. 13.
– USDA releases weekly Crop Progress report, 4 p.m. ET.
– Society of Environmental Journalists holds annual meeting, through Sunday, Fort Collins, Colorado.
– U.S. and China hold the first of two days of ministerial meetings to resolve trade war, Washington.
– USDA releases monthly Crop Production and WASDE reports, noon ET. Traders expect USDA to trim its forecasts of corn and soybean production by nearly 2 percent under the combined effects of lower yields and fewer harvest acres than estimated in September.
– Vice President Pence speaks in support of congressional approval of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement at Manning Agriculture, a business in Waukee, Iowa, about 15 miles west of Des Moines, and later attends a campaign reception for Iowa Sen. Joni Ernst.
– Columbus Day federal holiday, commemorating the landing of the explorer in the Americas on Oct. 12, 1492. It has been a federal holiday since 1937. “Opposition to Columbus Day dates back to the 19th Century, when anti-immigrant groups in the United States rejected the holiday because of its association with Catholicism,” says history.com.
– U.S. Grains Council, Growth Energy and Renewable Fuels Association hold Global Ethanol Summit, through Tuesday, Washington. Deputy Agriculture Secretary Steve Censky is keynote speaker. “More than 300 ministerial-level officials and senior-level industry leaders, ethanol producers and refiners from more than 60 countries have been invited to attend.”
– Iowa Hunger Summit, on the sidelines of the World Food Prize symposium, Des Moines.