U.S. and global ag trade resilient in face of pandemic – November 16, 2020

U.S. and global ag trade resilient in face of pandemic

Partly because food is indispensable, agricultural trade has been remarkably robust despite the disruptions of the pandemic, said Ohio State professor Ian Sheldon during the university’s annual agricultural outlook conference. Inventories of key staples are at high levels worldwide so “there’s no reason why a health crisis turns into a global food crisis,” he said.


Democrats claim victory in two House Ag races

Two Democratic members of the House Agriculture Committee, Reps. Sean Patrick Maloney and Antonio Delgado, claimed re-election as vote counting continued in New York State. And in two other undecided races, Democrats halved their opponents’ leads, thanks to absentee ballots.



California aggies back Costa: Nearly six dozen farm groups and water districts in California urged House Speaker Nancy Pelosi to make Rep. Jim Costa, who represents part of the Central Valley, the new House Agriculture chairman. (Farm Journal)


Higher MPG, less ethanol: Corn farmers’ profits could fall nearly 10 percent if demand for ethanol falls by the same amount as the projected 30-percent decline in gasoline consumption by 2050, mostly due to higher fuel efficiency. (CARD)


China gobbles global grain: China is importing so much grain that it will break previous records for purchases, potentially fueling food inflation worldwide in 2021. (Reuters)


More bison for Catalina: To the dismay of wildlife biologists, the nonprofit Catalina Island Conservancy, which owns nine-tenths of the island off the California coast, plans to boost tourism by adding more bison to a herd of roughly 100 head that are descendants of bison abandoned by a film crew in 1924. (Los Angeles Times)


Test of ‘Food as medicine’: One of the largest U.S. food banks, Operation Food Search of St. Louis, plans a three-year study of 750 women and their families with hopes it will convince insurers of the value of a steady supply of healthy food during pregnancy. (Food Bank News)




Agricultural Media Summit online, through Tuesday.

USDA issues weekly Crop Progress report, 4 p.m. ET.


Leaders of farm, food, environmental and state government groups announce creation of the Food and Agriculture Climate Alliance, 10:30 a.m. ET. “The group developed more than 40 recommendations it will be delivering to Congress and the administration.”

Farm Foundation holds online forum, “Creating supply chain agility through data innovation,” 11 a.m. ET

Official unveiling of the portrait of Senate Agriculture chairman Pat Roberts, who is retiring at the end of the year, 4 p.m. ET. Roberts is the only person to chair the House and Senate Agriculture Committees.

Association of Equipment Manufacturers holds annual conference online, with the theme “The next chapter,” through Friday.

Euromoney holds Global Grain Geneva conference online, through Thursday.

Farms.com holds Virtual Precision Agriculture Conference and Ag Technology Showcase, through Sunday.

USDA releases monthly Livestock, Dairy and Poultry Outlook, noon ET.

USDA releases monthly Sugar and Sweeteners Outlook, 3 p.m. ET.


The Conservation Fund holds an online discussion of its Working Farms Fund, “a pilot program in metro Atlanta creating a healthier, more equitable and resilient food system with ambitions to expand nationwide,” 3:30 p.m. ET.

The House is scheduled to vote on HR 7276, the Desert Locust Control Act, which would establish an interagency working group to develop a strategic plan “to eradicate locust outbreaks in the East Africa region and address future outbreaks in order to avert mass-scale food insecurity and potential political destabilization.”

National Association of Farm Broadcasters holds virtual annual convention, through Friday.


Open Markets Institute and Family Farm Action Alliance host a briefing on the new report, “The food system: Concentration and its impacts,” noon ET. Speakers will include New Jersey Sen. Cory Booker, the author of the report, and Mary Hendrickson, University of Missouri professor of rural sociology.

USDA releases monthly Livestock Slaughter report, 3 p.m. ET.


USDA releases monthly Cattle on Feed report, 3 p.m. ET.

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