Capital Press | Nation/World http://www.capitalpress.com Capital Press Sat, 30 Jan 2016 12:22:28 -0500 en http://EOR-CPwebvarnish.newscyclecloud.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/staticimage/images/rss-logo.jpg Capital Press | Nation/World http://www.capitalpress.com Potato industry works to regain ground after port losses http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20160129/potato-industry-works-to-regain-ground-after-port-losses http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20160129/potato-industry-works-to-regain-ground-after-port-losses#Comments Fri, 29 Jan 2016 18:02:38 -0500 Matw Weaver http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129828 KENNEWICK, Wash. — The Northwest potato industry is still working to recoup its losses from last year’s work slowdown at West Coast container ports, leaders say.

Several regional and national industry leaders shared the outlooks for the year ahead during the Washington-Oregon Potato Conference in Kennewick, Wash.

Blair Richardson, president and CEO of the U.S. Potato Board, said the industry put additional money into recapturing market losses from the port slowdown. In 2015, exports dropped by 20 percent from October to June.

Following the increased effort to regain lost market share, exports increased by 19 percent during the July-November reporting period, he said.

“We still have ground to make up,” Richardson said. “We still have work to do, but compared to a lot of crops that had the same focus, they’re still flat or down. The potato industry did a really good job of actually engaging back with customers in those markets and regaining lost ground.”

Without container service to the Port of Portland — further fallout from the labor slowdown — farmers now have to send their products to the ports of Seattle and Tacoma, said Bill Brewer, director of the Oregon Potato Commission.

One farmer in Klamath Falls, Ore., told Brewer he could make a round-trip a day to Portland, but can only make three trips a week to Seattle.

“That’s the type of change it has made,” Brewer said. “They have additional miles, hours and freight rate, all of those things. It just creates more problems.”

At least 50 percent of Oregon potatoes are exported internationally, and 90 percent go out of the state, Brewer said.

“We have to have ports and they have to be able to run efficiently,” he said.

Other topics leaders discussed during the conference included:

• The Trans-Pacific Partnership trade agreement is not likely to be approved before the presidential election, said National Potato Council CEO John Keeling. The TPP debate will likely continue into 2017, Keeling said.

• The Environmental Protection Agency is pushing for new procedures to review pesticides, designed to get old pesticides off the market, particularly organophosphates, Keeling said.

“If they are able to get away with that, basically just change policy on a whim without going through due process and allowing us the opportunity to comment in a substantive way, it will be very bad for us in the long term,” Keeling said.

• Brewer and Washington State Potato Commission executive director Chris Voigt both said research is a priority for growers.

Voigt said soil health and investigating the claims of biological products are areas of emphasis.

• Keeling said the industry would learn to work with whoever is elected the next president.

“We’ll take who we get, who you send us, and do the best we can,” he said. “Things don’t always happen in the time you want in Washington, (D.C.), but if you are consistent, focused, committed and continue to be aggressive on those issues, you can get them done over time.”

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EEOC, Evans Fruit settle sex harassment cases http://www.capitalpress.com/Orchards/20160129/eeoc-evans-fruit-settle-sex-harassment-cases http://www.capitalpress.com/Orchards/20160129/eeoc-evans-fruit-settle-sex-harassment-cases#Comments Fri, 29 Jan 2016 11:14:31 -0500 Dan Wheat http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129847 YAKIMA, Wash. — One of the nation’s largest apple producers, Evans Fruit Co. of Cowiche, has agreed to pay $272,000 to 20 claimants to resolve sexual harassment and retaliation claims that were pending before the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals.

The Equal Opportunity Employment Commission, which filed the original civil lawsuit in June 2010, issued a news release claiming victory, but the fruit company’s attorney called the settlement a “colossal failure” for the EEOC and Northwest Justice Project.

The original lawsuit alleged numerous women farmworkers were sexually harassed in company orchards over several years. The EEOC won a temporary restraining order and preliminary injunction against Evans Fruit and orchard manager Juan Marin for allegedly threatening and intimidating individuals who assisted in EEOC’s investigation.

In September 2011, EEOC filed a second lawsuit alleging retaliation against workers. The Northwest Justice Project represented retaliation claimants who joined in the suit.

In April 2013, a U.S. District Court jury found the EEOC failed to prove the allegations of sexual harassment in the first suit and a federal judge subsequently dismissed the second suit.

The EEOC then appealed them to the 9th Circuit.

Evans Fruit was confident it would have prevailed against the appeals but the settlement “was just too good a deal to pass up,” said Brendan V. Monahan, the Yakima attorney for Evans Fruit.

EEOC dropped its appeals and other issues it had with Evans Fruit for the $272,000 for 20 claimants. It is far less than Evans Fruit would have spent had litigation continued, Monahan said.

The other issues included a jury trial for one of the plaintiffs in the retaliation lawsuit not included in the dismissal, multiple administrative charges of sexual harassment and an EEOC commissioner’s charge that Evans Fruit did not allow the same job opportunities to women as it did to men, Monahan said.

“EEOC and Northwest Justice Project originally made multimillion-dollar demands against Evans Fruit, including well over $1 million in attorney fees and costs,” Monahan said. “Importantly, not a single nickel of the settlement goes to EEOC or Northwest Justice Project and their extraordinary and unsuccessful investment of taxpayer dollars will remain a signature loss.”

The jury verdict on the original suit remains intact “as a complete and profound repudiation” of the claims and the case “remains a colossal failure for the EEOC and Northwest Justice Project,” Monahan said.

However, Evans Fruit agreed to forgive approximately $45,000 in costs a judge ordered EEOC to pay as the losing party, he said.

This is EEOC’s second high-profile loss against Yakima-area farmers, he said. EEOC’s so-called human trafficking case against Valley Fruit and Green Acre Farms was dismissed as “frivolous” and EEOC was ordered to pay nearly $1 million to the farmers, he said.

“Given these results one would hope the EEOC would be a bit more judicious, reasonable and collaborative in any future engagements with the agriculture industry,” he said.

The cases have resulted in improved conditions and greater sexual harassment awareness and training within the industry as growers recognize their workforce is their greatest resource, he said.

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More workers being laid off at Fargo Case-New Holland plant http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160129/more-workers-being-laid-off-at-fargo-case-new-holland-plant http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160129/more-workers-being-laid-off-at-fargo-case-new-holland-plant#Comments Fri, 29 Jan 2016 08:39:21 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129852 FARGO, N.D. (AP) — Depressed farm prices are leading to more layoffs at Fargo’s Case-New Holland manufacturing plant.

Parent company CNH Industrial America says about 70 full-time workers will be laid off as a result of poor market conditions.

KFGO radio reports that employees were notified Thursday. Company spokeswoman Kathleen Prause says the layoffs will occur early next month.

More than 260 workers at the plant have been laid off in five rounds of cutbacks since November 2014.

The Fargo plant is one of CNH Industrial’s two major North American manufacturing plants. It makes tractors and payloaders.

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N.Y. farmers say defeating $15 minimum wage is top priority http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20160129/ny-farmers-say-defeating-15-minimum-wage-is-top-priority http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20160129/ny-farmers-say-defeating-15-minimum-wage-is-top-priority#Comments Fri, 29 Jan 2016 08:16:27 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129856 ALBANY, N.Y. (AP) — The organization representing New York’s 35,000 farms says defeating Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s proposed $15 minimum wage is its top political priority of the year.

New York Farm Bureau’s Dean Norton said this week that a $15 minimum would put the state’s agriculture industry at a competitive disadvantage with states like Pennsylvania, where the minimum is now $7.25 an hour.

The Farm Bureau estimates that Cuomo’s plan would cost farmers $500 million in added labor costs each year.

The Democratic governor wants to phase in the $15 minimum wage over several years and says he’ll offer businesses and farmers tax breaks and other incentives to help ease the transition.

The Farm Bureau’s other priorities for the year include investments in upstate roads and bridges and increased funding for farmland preservation.

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Vole control: Know your enemy, expert says http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20160128/vole-control-know-your-enemy-expert-says http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20160128/vole-control-know-your-enemy-expert-says#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 17:10:02 -0500 Carol Ryan Dumas http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129859 TWIN FALLS, Idaho — Voles have wreaked havoc on southern Idaho cropland and pastures over the past two years, and controlling the population of the tiny pests has proved difficult.

But a combination of control measures could help producers mitigate the damage they cause.

High populations of the mouse-like rodent can easily cause 30 percent yield loss, and some producers in southern Idaho have reported up to 50 percent yield losses, University of Idaho Extension Educator Carlo Moreno told the UI Bean School on Jan. 27.

The first step in getting a handle on vole populations is to “know your enemy,” Moreno said.

“They’re native to these lands, so in some ways you’re looking to co-exist,” he said.

There are four species of voles in southern Idaho, with the meadow vole most common. They live 12 to 18 months and are “extremely prolific.” Females reach sexual maturity in a month and have one to five litters a year with three to six young per litter, he said.

Doing the math, the population could spiral by 2.8 quadrillion a year, he said.

Fortunately, voles typically do not live long. Up to 88 percent of young voles die of disease, parasites, unfavorable climate and competition for resources within the first month, he said.

Outbreaks are cyclical and used to occur about every 10 years but the frequency is shrinking to as little as every six years. The primary factors for this include milder winter weather that results in less direct mortality, longer growing seasons and more rain and vegetation. Fewer natural predators and managed landscapes are also factors, he said.

Netted wire and hardware cloth can be used to keep voles from damaging trees and saplings, but controlling them on cropland and pasture requires other methods, he said.

Cultural practices include eliminating grassy ditch banks and fence lines, grazing or mowing alfalfa in the fall, creating weed-free buffer zones around fields, light tillage around borders to break up voles’ pathways, and fallowing ground, he said.

Two types of toxic substances can be used, but should only be used when populations are out of control, he said. Zinc phosphide, best applied in late fall and early spring, can be broadcast, applied in runways or placed in bait stations. When ingested, its active ingredient converts to phosphine gas, killing the vole within 12 hours, he said.

But producers need to be careful with the product as any moisture such as rain will trigger the release of gas, he said.

Anticoagulants, which cannot have any contact with crops and can require a pesticide license, can also be used. When ingested, they cause tiny lacerations to blood vessels and voles will bleed out in one to two weeks. They are slow-acting and require multiple feedings, he said.

They can be applied in field perimeters, runways and bait stations or broadcast during crop dormancy. The bait left in bait stations, which are easy to make from PVC pipe, should always be fresh. Product should be rotated, as voles can become bait-shy as cohorts die off, and the station should be placed in areas of heavy vole activity, he said.

Traps can also be used for small infestations. They can be baited with peanut butter and should be placed perpendicular to runways, he said.

Natural predators, such as raptors, owls and snakes, are also an important source of vole mortality. Creating habitat for predators can be part of an integrated management plan, he said.

What doesn’t work in vole control is exhaust injection, flame treatments and fumigants because vole nest and tunnel systems are elaborate, he said.

Prevention is the key in preventing yield losses to voles, and a combination of control methods is most effective, he said.

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More than one H-2A provider serves Washington http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160128/more-than-one-h-2a-provider-serves-washington http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160128/more-than-one-h-2a-provider-serves-washington#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 16:32:56 -0500 Dan Wheat http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129860 YAKIMA, Wash. — Continuing shrinkage of the available labor force in every sector of agriculture is a big concern to growers, a top supplier of foreign farmworkers says.

The company masLabor in Lovington, Va., is the leading supplier of H-2A and H-2B-visa foreign guestworkers in the nation, providing 13,000 workers annually to 800 clients in 46 states and in nearly every ag sector.

Its program manager, Kerry Scott, spoke at the Washington Growers League annual meeting at the Yakima Convention Center on Jan. 26.

While WAFLA, formerly known as the Washington Farm Labor Association, provided 7,895 of the 11,844 H-2A workers used in Washington in 2015, masLabor provided about 500. Zirkle Fruit Co., Selah, hired 2,889, according to U.S. Department of Labor records.

MasLabor hires the Washington Growers League to do some of its legwork in Washington and began offering services in the state several years ago, about the same time WAFLA’s H-2A services began expanding.

WAFLA recruits, transports and provides H-2A workers from Mexico for employers. It offers individual, shared and sequential services.

MasLabor generally costs more but offers a greater degree of customization with individual and shared contracts, Scott said. Growers have a greater chance of getting the same workers back each year that they have trained, he said.

MasLabor’s shared or joint-employer contracts offer greater shared grower control and shared liability so it takes growers who work well together and trust each other, he said.

Sequential services, whereby H-2A workers harvest different kinds of crops for different growers in sequence, can get tricky if weather or other factors cause last-minute changes in need, Scott said.

Growers have switched in both directions between masLabor and WAFLA and some are well suited to WAFLA, he said.

Florida citrus growers have found they can get the same amount of work done with 25 percent fewer H-2A workers than domestic workers because H-2A workers work harder, Scott said.

Tree fruit packers can use H-2A workers if packing their own fruit but have to hire H-2B workers if packing fruit for other growers. The H-2B program is more difficult to navigate, he said.

Mike Gempler, executive director of Washington Growers League, talked about shakedowns for money and exploitation that can happen with contractors in Mexico hired to recruit workers. He said it’s important to have ethical companies doing that work. U.S. law does not apply in Mexico, but U.S. labor advocates want the U.S. government to exercise jurisdiction over H-2A recruitment there, which would slow down the process increase costs, he said.

Brendan Monahan, a Yakima labor attorney, talked about H-2A risks including foreign and domestic recruiting, wages, medical liabilities and more invasive federal and state audits.

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Blueberry exports to Japan decrease http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20160128/blueberry-exports-to-japan-decrease http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20160128/blueberry-exports-to-japan-decrease#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 16:01:16 -0500 Mateusz Perkowski http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129863 PORTLAND — Blueberry exports to Japan, a major destination for the crop, have decreased in recent years but experts aren’t alarmed about the market’s future.

While the total amount of frozen and fresh blueberry shipments to Japan has dropped off, the decrease probably isn’t indicative of a long-term downward trend and the nation is expected to remain a top consumer, experts say.

“We’re not discouraged by it,” said Tom Payne, a market development consultant for the U.S. Highbush Blueberry Council.

Exports of frozen bluberries, the most common form of the crop shipped to Japan, were on the rise until hitting $13.6 million in value in 2013, according to USDA. After that, shipments fell 6 percent in 2014 and were on track to decrease 11 percent in 2015.

Similarly, exports of fresh cultivated blueberries to Japan topped $6 million in 2011 and 2012 but fell to roughly $5 million in 2013 and 2014, and shipments were trending lower through most of last year.

The softening of the Japanese market isn’t caused by shifting consumer tastes, but is linked to economic problems in the wake of the country’s catastrophic earthquake, tsunami and nuclear disaster in 2011, Payne said during the annual Oregon Blueberry Conference in Portland.

Since then, the dollar has gained in value significantly against the Japanese yen, which has reduced the buying power of major retailers in that nation, he said.

A U.S. dollar was trading in the range of 80 Japanese yen during 2011 and 2012, but spiked above 120 yen in 2015, an increase of roughly 50 percent.

Japan was an important “ready to go” market for U.S. blueberries, with consumers who have high disposable incomes and are receptive to positive health messages about the fruit, said Jeff Malensky, vice president of international sales at the Oregon Berry Packing Co.

As the market matures, it’s natural that growth will slow down or flatten, he said.

Meanwhile, exports to nearby South Korea have exploded and the country appears to be the “new Japan,” Payne said.

Frozen blueberry exports to South Korea more than doubled from 2011 to 2014, from $7.5 million to $16 million, and were in line to continue increasing in 2015.

The value of fresh blueberry shipments to that nation surged from less than $1 million in 2011 to nearly $2 million in 2014, and were on track to hit $3 million last year.

Payne said he’s optimistic about the overall trajectory of blueberry exports, which now represent about 15 percent of the U.S. crop and have grown by one-third in volume since 2010.

Consumption of blueberries around the world will have to increase to keep pace with production.

Between 2010 and 2014, global blueberry production grew 65 percent, to about 1.24 billion pounds, said Dave Brazelton, founder of Fall Creek Farm & Nursery.

Blueberry production is projected to grow 500 million pounds, to 1.7 billion, by 2019, he said.

Meanwhile, in recent years more frozen blueberries are going into storage than are coming out in the U.S., which does not bode well for prices received by farmers, said John Shelford, president of the Shelford Associates market consulting firm.

While the industry can’t expect to clear out its inventories completely, roughly one-fourth of frozen U.S. blueberries are now left unconsumed from year to year, Shelford said.

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Author talks about how bacon became a superstar http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20160128/author-talks-about-how-bacon-became-a-superstar http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20160128/author-talks-about-how-bacon-became-a-superstar#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 10:55:30 -0500 Matw Weaver http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129864 KENNEWICK, Wash. — Bacon had lowly beginnings as just another breakfast food, but over the past decade it has been transformed into a culinary superstar.

David Sax, business and food writer and author of the book “The Tastemakers,” said the U.S. pork industry struggled to find a market for pork bellies in the late 1970s and 1980s, when low-fat diets were popular. Along with the lack of attention came low prices. Bacon prices sagged to 19 cents per pound, down from the typical 60 to 70 cents, he said.

Based on restaurant feedback, the pork industry worked with food processors and universities to develop a better, pre-cooked bacon, and fast-food chains started offering bacon as an option on hamburgers and sandwiches.

At the same time, food media expanded. Celebrity chefs, 24-hour food channels on television and food blogs proliferated.

Bacon fits all tastes, Sax said, to the point where bacon-flavored mayonnaise and other specialty items have become popular.

Sax delivered the keynote address during the Washington-Oregon Potato Conference in Kennewick, Wash.

He defined a food trend as a change in collective eating behavior.

“It fuels the fire — it takes a food and turns it into a food trend by making that trend more about the culture around it, more about the idea of it than the taste,” he said.

A food trend has to make sense, taste good and be easy to make, he said, noting bacon is relatively affordable and fits in many different recipes.

Sax said possible future food trends include Indian food, which includes potatoes, and the broadening of local and organic trends into interests in wellness and sustainability.

Sax advised farmers not to get too bogged down in the daily routine of their operations, but to take an interest in food, subscribe to food magazines, read cookbooks and try new restaurants as a way to see what is popular, he said.

“You may not think of yourselves as foodies or culinary people, but you are,” he said. “You’re the most central people to the entire thing. Without you, none of those trends happen. If you realize you’re as much a part of that culinary world as everyone else, you’re going to understand it.”

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Ex-Obama administration official to advise Washington ports http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160128/ex-obama-administration-official-to-advise-washington-ports http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160128/ex-obama-administration-official-to-advise-washington-ports#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 09:43:21 -0500 Don Jenkins http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129866 OLYMPIA — A former Obama administration official will study Washington’s ports and make recommendations to state lawmakers on how to compete with ports in other states and Canada.

David Matsuda, who was U.S. maritime administrator from 2009-13, will look at how ports are governed and fund projects, and the steps companies must take to win approval to locate in ports.

Due out in the spring, the study has been commissioned by the Washington Maritime Association, an association of businesses, ports and unions.

Washington ports, which became embroiled in a labor dispute last year that slowed the movement of goods, face spirited competition from British Columbia and the uncertain impact of a wider Panama Canal.

Meanwhile, several proposed projects involving the export of coal face scrutiny from the state Department of Ecology over their effect on global carbon emissions.

Some $16.5 billion worth of agricultural products, about half originating in Washington, were exported through Washington ports in 2014, according to the state Department of Agriculture.

At a luncheon hosted by the Maritime Association, Matsuda told port officials to watch British Columbia ports in Vancouver and Prince Rupert.

“They want the big international cargo ships to go to British Columbia, not Seattle or Tacoma,” he said.

Matsuda said in an interview that as maritime administrator he attended conferences around the world and was impressed by the Canadians.

“It was a real shock to see the coordination between their ports, government and private sector,” he said. “Canada is getting things done.”

Matsuda wasn’t the only one praising Washington’s northern neighbor. During a panel discussion that preceded Matsuda’s talk, rail union leader Herb Krohn said Canadians are better at permitting and building job-boosting port projects.

“It doesn’t go on and on,” he said. “Everyone’s on the same page.”

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Caterpillar reports 4Q loss, but tops expectations http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160128/caterpillar-reports-4q-loss-but-tops-expectations http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160128/caterpillar-reports-4q-loss-but-tops-expectations#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 09:35:18 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129867 NEW YORK (AP) — Caterpillar Inc. reported a fourth-quarter loss as sales for equipment continued to slide amid weakness in the mining and energy industries.

Still, the results topped Wall Street expectations as the construction and mining equipment maker continues feeling the pain of lower commodity prices and a weakening global economy. It is in the process of cutting up to 10,000 jobs through 2018.

The Peoria, Illinois-based company expects economic weakness to linger throughout 2016 and to continue weighing down its performance.

“We took tough but necessary restructuring actions in 2015 — and they were significant,” said Chairman and CEO Doug Oberhelman, in a statement.

The company lost $87 million, or 15 cents per share, after reporting a profit in the same period a year earlier. Earnings, adjusted for restructuring costs, came to 74 cents per share.

The results beat Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of 10 analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of 69 cents per share.

Revenue fell 23 percent to $11.03 billion in the period, falling short of Street forecasts. Six analysts surveyed by Zacks expected $11.28 billion.

Overall in 2015, the company earned $2.1 billion, or $3.50 per share on revenue of $47 billion.

Caterpillar expects full-year revenue in the range of $40 billion to $44 billion, marking a decline in the midpoint of that range by about $3.5 billion from its prior outlook.

Caterpillar shares dropped $3.27, or 5.6 percent, to $61.59 in premarket trading. Its shares have dropped 14 percent since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index has fallen roughly 8 percent. The stock has fallen 27 percent in the last 12 months.

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160128/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160128/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 09:17:21 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129869 Portland, Ore., Thursday, Jan. 28, 2016

USDA Market News

All Bids in dollars per bushel. Bids are limited and not fully established in early trading.

Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon in dollars per bushel.

In early trading March wheat futures trended 1.50 to five cents per bushel lower compared to Wednesday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat delivered to Portland in unit trains and barges for January delivery for ordinary protein were not available.

Bids for guaranteed maximum 10.5 protein were not well tested in early trading but were indicated as steady to lower compared to Wednesday’s noon bids.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for January delivery were not well tested in early trading, but were indicated as lower compared to Wednesday’s noon bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 14 percent protein US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for January delivery were not well tested in early trading, but were indicated as lower compared to Wednesday’s noon bids. Some exporters are not

issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for US 2 Yellow Corn delivered full coast in 110 car shuttle trains during January trended lower compared to Wednesday’s noon bids. Bids for US 1 Yellow Soybeans delivered full coast in 110 car shuttle trains during January were lower in early trading.

All wheat bids in dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Ordinary protein

Jan NA

Feb NA

Mar NA

Apr NA

Aug NC NA

Guaranteed maximum 10.5 pct protein

Jan 6.1150-6.4500

Feb 6.1150-6.4500

Mar 6.1650-6.4500

Apr 6.2225-6.4500

Aug NC 5.5000-5.5325

US 1 White Club Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Ordinary protein

Jan NA

Guaranteed maximum 10.5 pct protein

Jan 7.2650-8.1500

US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat - (Exporter bids-falling numbers of 300 or

better)

Ordinary protein 5.2950-5.5150

11 pct protein 5.4950-5.6350

11.5 pct protein

Jan 5.5950-5.6950

Feb 5.4950-5.6450

Mar 5.5950-5.6550

Apr 5.6500-5.6800

12 pct protein 5.6250-5.7250

13 pct protein 5.6850-5.7850

US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat (with a minimum of 300 falling numbers, a maximum

of 0.5 part per million vomitoxin, and a maximum of one percent total damage)

13 pct protein 5.6800-5.9100

14 pct protein

Jan 6.0000-6.2000

Feb 6.0500-6.2500

Mar 6.0500-6.2500

Apr 6.2550-6.3050

15 pct protein 6.1600-6.3600

16 pct protein 6.3200-6.5200

US 2 Yellow Corn

Shuttle trains-Delivered full coast Pacific Northwest-BN

Jan 4.4975-4.5175

Feb 4.4875-4.5175

Mar 4.4875-4.4975

Apr 4.4850-4.5250

May 4.4850-4.5250

Jun 4.5125

US 1 Yellow Soybeans

Shuttle trains-Delivered full coast Pacific Northwest-BN

Jan 10.0400-10.0600

Feb 9.8325-9.9025

Mar 9.7325-9.7825

Oct/Nov 9.5500-9.6500

US 2 Heavy White Oats 3.9200

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Dec 2015

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges NA

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 5.4500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 5.6200

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 6.3400

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

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Oregon showdown further polarizes federal land debate http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20160128/oregon-showdown-further-polarizes-federal-land-debate http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20160128/oregon-showdown-further-polarizes-federal-land-debate#Comments Thu, 28 Jan 2016 08:33:30 -0500 Eric Mortenson Mateusz Perkowski http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129876 The showdown between federal agents and armed militants in Southeast Oregon will likely further polarize the public over the management of federal lands, experts say.

For some, the recent killing of an armed protester and arrests of several others will buttress the view they were extremist militants with unrealistic goals.

For others, the government’s actions and its siege of remaining protesters occupying the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge will confirm fears of persecution by federal agencies.

Whether the standoff will ultimately lead to changes in the federal government’s oversight of the West’s vast public lands is also subject to varying interpretations.

Char Miller, an environmental analysis professor at Pomona College, said that Ammon Bundy and the other armed protesters miscalculated the public’s reaction to the occupation.

The national attention may have boosted the protester’s egos, but it also created a backlash against using the threat of violence to influence federal land policy, Miller said.

“What they’ve done is really hurt those with legitimate beefs with the federal government about how the land should be managed,” he said.

In the public’s mind, the protesters’ hostile tactics have been conflated with the goal of increasing local control over federal property, which weakens their case in the political arena, he said.

“If they wanted an uprising in Congress, they just made it that much harder,” Miller said.

The protesters’ actions won’t bolster attempts to transfer federal land to the states, which already had legitimacy among conservative lawmakers in multiple state legislatures before the refuge takeover, said Martin Nie, a natural resource policy professor at the University of Montana.

“They’re less of a spectacle and should be taken more seriously,” Nie said.

The philosophy of Bundy and his followers, meanwhile, is entangled with far-right interpretations of the U.S. Constitution and the power of county sheriffs but does not offer any serious proposals for changing federal land policy, he said.

“I don’t think this spectacle has helped that cause at all,” he said.

Among people who were uneasy about excessive federal authority, though, recent events will likely reinforce the notion that the government is out-of-control, said Mark Pollot, an attorney who is fighting federal agencies in court on behalf of deceased Nevada rancher Wayne Hage.

Left-wing protests, such as “Occupy Wall Street,” invaded private property and were more disruptive than the refuge standoff but did not elicit a similarly strong-armed reaction from the federal government, he said.

Pollot said that distrust of the government will particularly rise if there are indications that federal agents overreacted during the arrests and did not have to shoot the protesters’ spokesman, LaVoy Finicum.

If nothing else, the confrontation will show that Western land policy is more than a minor issue and deserves Congressional attention, Pollot said.

“It will add some weight to the debate,” he said.

On the other hand, there’s the risk of a shift away from the political and legal channels that critics such as Wayne Hage have traditionally used in the “Sagebrush Rebellion” against federal land policy, he said.

“I’m concerned there will be people who will now think that’s worthless,” Pollot said.

The restrictions placed on ranchers have gained visibility in Washington, D.C., Salem and Portland, but that doesn’t mean they will be changed, said Bruce Weber, director of Oregon State University’s Rural Studies Program.

It’s unclear how the existence of a perceived “martyr for the cause” will change the situation, Weber said.

“People who believe the Constitution prohibits federal ownership and management of those particular lands won’t change their minds,” he said.

Concerns about growing federal restrictions on public lands long predate the refuge occupation and will likely continue even if the current conflict is resolved.

Bob Skinner, a fifth-generation cattle rancher in the Jordan Valley area, heads a group opposed to the proposed Owyhee Canyonlands wilderness and conservation area, which would cover 2.5 million acres in Oreogn’s Malheur County.

The designation would severely regulate or prohibit grazing and other activities on an area that is bigger than Yellowstone National Park and covers 40 percent of Malheur County.

Skinner said his worst fear is that the arrests of several protesters and the death of Finicum will “activate” people who hold similar anti-government views.

Even so, the incident has brought more visibility to Western concerns over public land.

“I can’t help but think it’s brought some awareness to government over-reach, that might have some impact,” Skinner said.

Rep. Kurt Schrader, D-Ore., compared the standoff in southeast Oregon to the “Black Lives Matter” movement, which arose in reaction to conflicts between law enforcement and the black community.

“Rural America faces the same lack of recognition,” Schrader said.

There’s a “palpable sense” that government policy has focused on the economic welfare of urban areas while overlooking rural areas, he said.

As to the effect of the occupation on the federal land debate, Schrader said the impact is uncertain.

While people sympathize with the hardships faced in the rural West, the occupation has also shown they have no appetite for lawlessness, he said.

Schrader said he and other members of Oregon’s Congressional delegation are pushing to reform overly restrictive rules on grazing and logging while protecting the environment on federal property.

“The scales have tipped so far to the left that you can barely do anything there, it’s so cost-prohibitive,” he said. “We’ve got to change the federal policy.”

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Authorities surround nature preserve after arrests, shooting http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20160127/authorities-surround-nature-preserve-after-arrests-shooting http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20160127/authorities-surround-nature-preserve-after-arrests-shooting#Comments Wed, 27 Jan 2016 13:35:01 -0500 KEITH RIDLER http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129882 BURNS, Ore. (AP) — The Oregon nature preserve being occupied by an armed anti-government group was surrounded by law-enforcement agents Wednesday, a day after one of the occupiers was killed by officers during a traffic stop and eight others, including group leader Ammon Bundy, were arrested.

The confrontation came amid increasing calls for authorities to take action against Bundy for the illegal occupation of the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge, which was seized by the group on Jan. 2 in a bid to force the government to turn federal lands over to local officials.

The traffic stop was supposed to bring a peaceful resolution to the situation but ended badly, Harney County Sheriff Dave Ward said, expressing disappointment.

“Multiple law enforcement agencies put a lot of work putting together the best tactical plan they could to take these guys down peacefully,” Ward said at a news conference Wednesday.

The death didn’t have to happen, he said.

Details of the fatal encounter were sparse. It occurred as Bundy and his followers were heading to a community meeting late Tuesday afternoon in the town of John Day, about 70 miles north of Burns.

Arianna Finicum Brown confirmed that her father, Arizona rancher Robert “LaVoy” Finicum, was the man killed, the Oregonian reported. The 55-year-old was a frequent and public presence at the refuge, often speaking for the group at news conferences.

It was unclear what led to the shooting, or if Finicum or any of the other ranchers exchanged gunfire with officers. Authorities would not say how many shots were fired.

“This is where I’m going to breathe my last breath, whether I’m 90, 95 or 55,” Finicum told The Associated Press on Jan. 5. “ ... I’m going to not spend my days in a cell.”

The FBI and Oregon State Police would say only that the dead man was wanted by federal authorities. They said no more specifics would be released pending formal identification by the medical examiner.

Greg Bretzing, special agent in charge for the FBI in Oregon, said authorities took a deliberate and measured response to the occupiers and tried to conduct the traffic stop safely and away from local residents.

The armed activists were given ample opportunity to leave the refuge peacefully and have their grievances heard through legal means, he said.

“They chose, instead, to threaten the very America they profess to love, with violence, intimidation and criminal acts,” Bretzing said.

He and the sheriff urged the remaining group members to leave.

“This has been tearing our community apart. It’s time for everybody in this illegal occupation to move on,” Ward said. “There doesn’t have to be bloodshed in our community.”

Jason Patrick, one of the leaders of the occupation, told Oregon Public Broadcasting that five or six group members remained inside the refuge.

For weeks, law-enforcement vehicles have been noticeably absent from the roads around the refuge. On Wednesday, however, marked law-enforcement cars were parked throughout the region. The FBI and state police said they were setting up checkpoints and only allowing ranchers who own property in specific areas to pass.

“If the people on the refuge want to leave, they are free to do so through the checkpoints, where they will be identified,” Bretzing said.

About 13 miles from the refuge headquarters, a sign warned drivers to turn around because a roadblock is ahead. Reporters and others who approached the vehicles blocking the road were met by FBI agents wearing camouflage body armor and helmets and carrying assault rifles. A spike strip, designed to puncture tires, was laid across the pavement just beyond the roadblock.

Police and news media have converged on the nearby town of Burns, where most hotels are booked to capacity.

Brand Thornton, one of Bundy’s supporters, said he left the refuge Monday and was not sure what those remaining would do.

“The entire leadership is gone,” he told the AP in a telephone interview. “I wouldn’t blame any of them for leaving.”

Thornton called the arrests “a dirty trick” by law enforcement.

In addition to Ammon Bundy, those arrested were: his brother Ryan Bundy, 43; Brian Cavalier, 44; Shawna Cox, 59; and Ryan Payne, 32 - apprehended during the traffic stop on U.S. Highway 395 Tuesday afternoon. Authorities said two others — Joseph Donald O’Shaughnessy, 45, and Peter Santilli, 50 — were arrested separately in Burns, while FBI agents in Arizona arrested another, Jon Eric Ritzheimer, 32.

Each will face a federal felony charge of conspiracy to impede officers of the United States from discharging their official duties through the use of force, intimidation or threats, authorities said.

Law enforcement previously had taken a hands-off approach, reflecting lessons learned during bloody standoffs at Waco, Texas, and Ruby Ridge, Idaho, during the 1990s.

Many residents of Harney County, where the refuge is located, have been among those demanding that Bundy leave. Many sympathize with his criticism of federal land management policies but opposed the refuge takeover.

“I am pleased that the FBI has listened to the concerns of the local community and responded to the illegal activity occurring in Harney County by outside extremists,” Oregon Sen. Jeff Merkley said in a statement.

The Bundys are the sons of Nevada rancher Cliven Bundy, who was involved in a high-profile 2014 standoff with the government over grazing rights.

The group, which has included people from as far away as Michigan, calls itself Citizens for Constitutional Freedom. It came to the frozen high desert of eastern Oregon to decry what it calls onerous federal land restrictions and to object to the prison sentences of two local ranchers convicted of setting fires.

———

Associated Press writers Rebecca Boone in Boise, Idaho, Gene Johnson and Lisa Baumann in Seattle and Terrence Petty and Kristena Hansen in Portland, Oregon, contributed to this report.

The law enforcement partners involved in the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge held a press conference this morning. Below is the replay of that conference courtesy of KGW.

Here is the Blue Mountain Eagle's audio recording from last night's community meeting at the John Day Senior Center in its entirety.

 

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160127/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160127/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Wed, 27 Jan 2016 09:15:56 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129889 Portland, Ore., Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2016

USDA Market News

All Bids in dollars per bushel. Bids are limited and not fully

established in early trading.

Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon in dollars per bushel.

In early trading March wheat futures trended 7.75 to 10.75 cents per bushel lower compared to Tuesday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat delivered to Portland in unit trains and barges for January delivery for ordinary protein were not available.

Bids for guaranteed maximum 10.5 protein were not well tested in early trading but were indicated as steady to lower compared to Tuesday’s noon bids.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for January delivery were not well tested in early trading, but were indicated as lower compared to Tuesday’s noon bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 14 percent protein US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for January delivery were not well tested in early trading, but were indicated as lower compared to Tuesday’s noon bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for US 2 Yellow Corn delivered full coast in 110 car shuttle trains during January trended mixed compared to Tuesday’s noon bids.

Bids for US 1 Yellow Soybeans delivered full coast in 110 car shuttle trains during January were higher in early trading.

All wheat bids in dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Ordinary protein

Jan NA

Feb NA

Mar NA

Apr NA

Aug NC NA

Guaranteed maximum 10.5 pct protein

Jan 6.2900-6.4500

Feb 6.2900-6.4500

Mar 6.2900-6.4500

Apr 6.2950-6.4500

Aug NC 5.5000-5.5375

US 1 White Club Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Ordinary protein

Jan NA

Guaranteed maximum 10.5 pct protein

Jan 7.4400-8.1500

US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat - (Exporter bids-falling numbers of 300 or

better)

Ordinary protein 5.3125-5.5325

11 pct protein 5.5125-5.6525

11.5 pct protein

Jan 5.6125-5.7125

Feb 5.5125-5.6625

Mar 5.6125-5.6725

Apr 5.6700-5.7000

12 pct protein 5.6425-5.7425

13 pct protein 5.7025-5.8025

US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat (with a minimum of 300 falling numbers, a maximum

of 0.5 part per million vomitoxin, and a maximum of one percent total damage)

13 pct protein 5.6875-5.9175

14 pct protein

Jan 6.0075-6.2075

Feb 6.0575-6.2575

Mar 6.1575-6.2575

Apr 6.2575-6.3075

15 pct protein 6.1675-6.3675

16 pct protein 6.3275-6.5275

US 2 Yellow Corn

Shuttle trains-Delivered full coast Pacific Northwest-BN

Jan 4.5075-4.5575

Feb 4.5075-4.5375

Mar 4.5075-4.5175

Apr 4.5075-4.5475

May 4.5075-4.5475

Jun 4.5375

US 1 Yellow Soybeans

Shuttle trains-Delivered full coast Pacific Northwest-BN

Jan 10.1000

Feb 9.8525-9.9425

Mar 9.7925-9.8525

Oct/Nov 9.5850-9.6850

US 2 Heavy White Oats 3.9200

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Dec 2015

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges NA

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 5.4500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 5.6200

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 6.3400

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

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Wildfire plan seen as biggest land policy change in decades http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20160127/wildfire-plan-seen-as-biggest-land-policy-change-in-decades http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20160127/wildfire-plan-seen-as-biggest-land-policy-change-in-decades#Comments Wed, 27 Jan 2016 08:51:42 -0500 KEITH RIDLER http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129893 BOISE, Idaho (AP) — A year after Interior Secretary Sally Jewell shifted the national approach to fighting wildfires across a wide swath of sagebrush country in the West, her strategy is turning out to be one of the most significant federal land policy changes in some 80 years, public land experts, outdoor enthusiasts and scientists say.

The five-page order she issued last January directed federal resources for the first time to fight massive blazes in open sagebrush steppe habitat that supports cattle ranching, recreation and some 350 species of wildlife, including the imperiled sage grouse.

“It is one of the most imperiled ecosystems in the United States,” said Janice Schneider, the Interior Department’s assistant secretary for Land and Minerals Management.

Firefighting officials say Jewell’s order led more of the nation’s firefighting resources to respond to blazes in Great Basin sagebrush steppe last year, when the U.S. experienced one of its worst wildfire seasons, with nearly 16,000 square miles burned. Experts say her strategy helped extinguish several smaller fires, though one giant blaze scorched sagebrush steppe in portions of Idaho and Oregon.

Many ranchers have embraced the order despite wariness and sometimes anger with federal oversight, displayed in the armed occupation of a federal wildlife preserve in Oregon. The small group who took over the Malheur National Wildlife Refuge more than three weeks ago says the government has no authority to enforce federal grazing contracts with ranchers.

Ranchers backing Jewell’s order have formed Rangeland Fire Protection Associations, teaming up with federal firefighters to stop small fires from exploding and charring forage needed by cattle.

“We know that a healthy ecosystem and healthy economy is inextricably linked,” said Schneider, who helped organize the collaboration between federal and state officials, scientists and ranchers to carry out the order.

It calls for a “science-based” approach to safeguard greater sage grouse while contending with fires that have been especially destructive in the Great Basin region of Idaho, Utah, Nevada, Oregon and California. The bird did not receive federal protections under the Endangered Species Act amid efforts to save it.

Many fire rehabilitation efforts have failed in previous decades because federal officials planted the wrong species of the similar-looking sagebrush. Jewell’s plan aims to solve that problem by using local seeds or seeds from the correct species found at similar elevations and growing conditions.

The order led to the biggest change for sagebrush steppe since the Taylor Grazing Act of the 1930s, which sought to stop overgrazing on public lands, said U.S. Geological Survey research ecologist Matt Germino, who specializes in sagebrush ecosystems.

“The initiatives that are underway — preserving the good habitat and restoring the bad habitat — that’s unprecedented,” he said.

One large sagebrush fire formed in southwestern Idaho and eastern Oregon last summer, consuming some 436 square miles, fueled mainly by invasive cheatgrass. Jewell’s order includes plans to fight cheatgrass and restoration work for burned sagebrush areas, and $67 million is being spent to rehabilitate the burned area.

“You can see what they’re doing on the Soda Fire right now and the commitment of resources in order to get the job done,” said Idaho Gov. Butch Otter, a Republican who often bashes federal decision makers but supports Jewell’s order.

Heading into last year’s wildfire season, it wasn’t clear how an order from the Interior Department would play out with the U.S. Forest Service, which is within a different department and responsible for protecting national forests. It also has the most firefighters and contracts all the large air tankers.

But “they were a partner all the way,” said Ron Dunton, assistant director of the Office of Fire and Aviation with Interior’s Bureau of Land Management, the agency that oversees most of the nation’s sagebrush country.

For experts and outdoor enthusiasts, the order is giving attention to land that’s unfamiliar to many.

“To Americans outside of here, they know national forests and they know national parks and spectacular country,” said John Freemuth, a Boise State University professor and public lands expert. “This order has taken what many might have thought of as a wasteland and told them it’s not that.

“And in that sense, her order is a big part of the elevation of that ecosystem as important and cherished as any other,” he said.

Ed Arnett of the Theodore Roosevelt Conservation Partnership agreed.

“Now, it’s receiving the attention it deserves,” said Arnett, whose organization works with hunting and fishing groups on public lands policy.

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Lawmakers push for industrial hemp production in Hawaii http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20160127/lawmakers-push-for-industrial-hemp-production-in-hawaii http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20160127/lawmakers-push-for-industrial-hemp-production-in-hawaii#Comments Wed, 27 Jan 2016 08:31:12 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129895 HONOLULU (AP) — Two state lawmakers are calling for the legalization of industrial hemp production in Hawaii, which they say could replace the state’s last sugar plantation that is shutting down by the end of the year.

State Reps. Kaniela Ing and Cynthia Thielen have introduced a bill that would allow industrial hemp production in Hawaii. The crop is still considered a controlled substance and prohibited by the federal government.

Alexander & Baldwin Inc. announced earlier this month that it would phase out sugar by the end of 2016. Hawaii leaders have said the 36,000-acre property on Maui run by the company’s Hawaiian Commercial & Sugar subsidiary should remain farmland after the plantation’s closure.

“The governor talked about three options: He said it’s either going to be housing for the super rich, it’s either going to be a dust bowl or it’s going to be agriculture,” said Democratic Sen. Kalani English of Hana, East and Upcountry Maui, Moloka’i, Lana’i and Kaho’olawe. “Let’s hope it’s agriculture. Let’s make it possible for the types of agriculture that are needed.”

Hemp can be fed to livestock, used to make food or clothing and has been praised for its environmental benefits.

“The crop itself can restore nutrients to the soil that it’s on,” said Ing. “So the former sugar land that has been taking such a pounding from all the pesticides that is now quite barren it can be used to restore — you can plant hemp, plant something else.”

For the last two years, scientists at the University of Hawaii Waimanalo Research Station have been growing hemp under an exemption established in the 2014 federal farm bill that makes it legal for research purposes.

Ing and Thielen’s bill puts Hawaii in line with more than 30 states that have proposed pro-hemp legislation. The Hawaii lawmakers’ plan would expand industrial hemp research, growth and cultivation to farmers across the state.

“The research under federal law and state law includes commercial research so the farmers will be allowed and authorized to sell their crop,” Thielen said.

The bill is backed by the Hawaii Department of Agriculture, which would issue the licenses for hemp production. Farmers would be required to report their findings to the state each year.

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Onion, cabbage insurance deadline Feb. 1 http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160126/onion-cabbage-insurance-deadline-feb-1 http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160126/onion-cabbage-insurance-deadline-feb-1#Comments Tue, 26 Jan 2016 10:36:18 -0500 Matw Weaver http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129905 Feb. 1 is the deadline for Northwest farmers who produce onions and cabbage to buy crop insurance.

According to the USDA Risk Management Agency, growers must apply for coverage for spring-planted onions in Idaho, Oregon and Washington and cabbage in Oregon and Washington before the end of January.

For the 2015 crop, roughly 93 percent of onions in Washington were insured, with comparable coverage in Idaho and Oregon, Jo Lynne Seufer of the RMA’s Spokane office said.

No cabbage was insured. Seufer said the risk may not be significant for growers who raise cabbage in Eastern Washington and the Willamette Valley in Oregon.

Policyholders who wish to make changes in their coverage also have until the sales closing date.

In the meantime, the final date to apply for whole-farm revenue protection and insurance coverage on all other spring crops is March 15, except for wheat in counties with fall and spring-planted types.

According to an agency press release, RMA changed the whole-farm revenue protection to include improvements for beginning farmers and ranchers, livestock producers and producers whose operations are expanding. More beginning farmers and ranchers can participate because the agency requires three historical years and farming records from the past year.

Any beginning farmer and rancher may qualify by using a former farm operator’s federal farm tax records if they have assumed at least 90 percent of the farm operation.

Producers can now insure up to $1 million worth of animals and animal products, according to RMA. The agency also increased the cap on historical revenue for expanding operations to 35 percent so growing farms can better cover growth in the insurance guarantee.

Seufer said the agency is fielding inquiries from farmers curious about whole-farm revenue protection, wondering whether protection against down-side price risk is what they need. She encouraged farmers to speak with their crop insurance agent as soon as possible.

“The more time they have to work with their agent, the better,” she said.

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Spud leaders update growers on Mexico, other issues http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160126/spud-leaders-update-growers-on-mexico-other-issues http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160126/spud-leaders-update-growers-on-mexico-other-issues#Comments Tue, 26 Jan 2016 10:04:34 -0500 John O’Connell http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129907 Capital Press

POCATELLO, Idaho ­— The U.S. potato industry is slowly winning cases in the Mexican legal system and working toward its goal of restoring severed market access for its fresh potatoes throughout Mexico, said National Potato Council Executive Vice President and CEO John Keeling.

Keeling, U.S. Potato Board President and CEO Blair Richardson and Idaho Potato Commission President and CEO Frank Muir updated the industry on Mexico and a host of other pressing issues Jan. 20 during the University of Idaho’s 2016 Potato Conference, hosted on the Idaho State University campus.

The Mexican market had long restricted U.S. fresh imports to within 26 kilometers of the country’s border with the U.S., until the country was opened to fresh U.S. imports in May 2014. Three weeks after the market was opened, the Mexican potato growers’ organization, CONPAPA, succeeded in getting judges to grant temporary injunctions against fresh U.S. spud imports. The original 26-kilometer restriction was reimposed and remains in place.

“We export one-fifth of the potatoes we produce in the U.S., and the Holy Grail is access to Mexico,” Keeling said.

Keeling said five cases have been resolved of the 10 temporary injunctions filed in Mexico, and the U.S. potato industry has prevailed in each case. Keeling hopes cases will be consolidated when the actual constitutional issue is heard in the Mexican court system. Keeling said the industry has hired Mexican lawyers, and legal fees associated with the effort are already approaching $500,000, but a USDA funding source intended to address market access challenges has provided financial assistance.

“We’re going to do what it takes,” Keeling said. “The constitution part could take a while. The injunction part will hopefully move relatively quickly.”

Keeling noted Congress appropriated $2 million for USDA to invest in nationwide potato breeding programs, representing a 40 percent increase.

Keeling also lauded Sen. Mike Crapo, R-Idaho, for introducing an amendment to the Bipartisan Sportsmen’s Act, S. 659, which was passed Jan. 20 by the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. Crapo’s amendment would remove the requirement for a special Clean Water Act National Pollutant Discharge Elimination System permit for pesticide applications made near water bodies.

Keeling believes the labels on each farm chemical already provide the rules for product applications, and adequately protect wildlife and the environment.

“If you comply with those rules, you shouldn’t need additional permitting,” Keeling said.

Richardson offered an update on his organization’s effort to donate salad bars to U.S. schools, while also offering creative menu ideas to school food service officials featuring potatoes. Richardson said the USPB program has donated 74 salad bars to schools and has commitments for 100 more.

Richardson is also optimistic that spud exports will resume their upward trend, following a drop in 2015. He said USPB invested $285,000 in 2015 specifically to regain lost foreign sales, plus another $410,000 to restore lost exports from USDA Market Access Program dollars.

Muir said interest is up in IPC’s ongoing Potato Lovers Month promotion, which has resulted in 5,146 displays by U.S. grocers and military commissaries. Muir also referenced surveys concluding potatoes ranked No. 1 in popularity from a list of 50 vegetables, and that 90 percent of consumers associated potatoes with Idaho. Idaho potatoes represented the strongest consumer association in the survey, ahead of Florida oranges.

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160126/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160126/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Tue, 26 Jan 2016 09:13:56 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129912 Portland, Ore., Tuesday, Jan. 26, 2016

USDA Market News

All Bids in dollars per bushel. Bids are limited and not fully established in early trading.

Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon in dollars per bushel.

In early trading March wheat futures trended 3.75 to 5.50 cents per bushel higher compared to Monday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat delivered to Portland in unit trains and barges for January delivery for ordinary protein were not available.

Bids for guaranteed maximum 10.5 protein were not well tested in early trading but were indicated as steady to higher compared to Monday’s noon bids.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for January delivery were not well tested in early trading, but were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 14 percent protein US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for January delivery were not well tested in early trading, but were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for US 2 Yellow Corn delivered full coast in 110 car shuttle trains during January trended lower compared to Monday’s noon bids.

Bids for US 1 Yellow Soybeans delivered full coast in 110 car shuttle trains during January were lower in early trading.

All wheat bids in dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Ordinary protein

Jan NA

Feb NA

Mar NA

Apr NA

Aug NC NA

Guaranteed maximum 10.5 pct protein

Jan 6.3700-6.4500

Feb 6.3800-6.4500

Mar 6.3800-6.4500

Apr 6.4225-6.4500

Aug NC 5.5000-5.6600

US 1 White Club Wheat - delivered by Unit Trains and Barges

Ordinary protein

Jan NA

Guaranteed maximum 10.5 pct protein

Jan 7.3700-8.1500

US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat - (Exporter bids-falling numbers of 300 or

better)

Ordinary protein 5.4300-5.6500

11 pct protein 5.5800-5.7700

11.5 pct protein

Jan 5.6300-5.8300

Feb 5.6300-5.7800

Mar 5.7300-5.7900

Apr 5.7800-5.8100

12 pct protein 5.7600-5.8600

13 pct protein 5.8200-5.9200

US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat (with a minimum of 300 falling numbers, a maximum

of 0.5 part per million vomitoxin, and a maximum of one percent total damage)

13 pct protein 5.7650-5.9950

14 pct protein

Jan 6.0850-6.2850

Feb 6.1350-6.3350

Mar 6.2350-6.3350

Apr 6.2875-6.3875

15 pct protein 6.2450-6.4450

16 pct protein 6.4050-6.6050

US 2 Yellow Corn

Shuttle trains-Delivered full coast Pacific Northwest-BN

Jan 4.5450-4.5550

Feb 4.5450-4.5550

Mar 4.5350-4.5450

Apr 4.5375-4.5775

May 4.5375-4.5775

Jun 4.5675-4.5775

US 1 Yellow Soybeans

Shuttle trains-Delivered full coast Pacific Northwest-BN

Jan 10.0850

Feb 9.8475-9.9375

Mar 9.7875-9.8475

Oct/Nov 9.5700-9.6700

US 2 Heavy White Oats 3.9200

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Dec 2015

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges NA

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 5.4500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 5.6200

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 6.3400

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

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DuPont reports 4Q loss, steps up cost cuts ahead of Dow deal http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160126/dupont-reports-4q-loss-steps-up-cost-cuts-ahead-of-dow-deal http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20160126/dupont-reports-4q-loss-steps-up-cost-cuts-ahead-of-dow-deal#Comments Tue, 26 Jan 2016 09:07:24 -0500 RANDALL CHASEAP Business Writer http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129913 DOVER, Del. (AP) — DuPont Co., pursuing a merger with Dow Chemical, tipped to a fourth-quarter loss as volumes declined and the strong dollar weighed on results.

The company is ratcheting up spending cuts ahead of the deal, announcing it expects about $730 million in cost reductions by the end of the year. It’s laying off about 10 percent of its global workforce of more than 60,000 people.

DuPont booked a $798 million restructuring charge, incorporating $656 million of severance and related benefit costs during the quarter.

Sales fell across all business segments and in all regions, mostly because of negative currency impacts, although volumes declined in North America, as well as the Europe, Middle East and Africa region.

The electronics and communications unit had a sales decline of 14 percent. Sales fell 11 percent in the agriculture and also the performance materials segments. All three units also saw full-year sales decline by double-digit percentages.

The Wilmington, Delaware, chemical company on Tuesday reported a loss of $253 million, or 29 cents per share, for the quarter ending Dec. 31, compared to a profit of $683 million, or 75 cents per share, for the same period in 2014.

Operating earnings adjusted for nonrecurring costs and discontinued operations were $239 million, or 27 cents per share, in line with Wall Street analyst estimates but down from $519 million, or 57 cents per share, in the previous year.

Net sales totaled $5.3 billion, down from $5.8 billion in the previous year.

For the full-year, DuPont reported net income of $1.95 billion, or $2.17 per share, compared to $3.6 billion, or $3.95 per share, in 2014. Net sales for the year declined 12 percent to $25.1 billion. Operating earnings for the year totaled $2.77 per share, down from $3.36 per share in the prior year.

DuPont expects to close the Dow Chemical deal to close in the second half of this year, but it faces a significant review from regulators. The combined company, DowDuPont, will be separated into three independent, publicly traded companies through tax-free spin-offs.

“We are making progress on key initiatives, including further improving our cost structure and restructuring our organization to enhance our competitiveness,” said DuPont chairman and CEO Ed Breen. “.... Our merger process is on track. We are meeting key milestones and have begun our planning to create three strong, highly focused, independent businesses in agriculture, material science and specialty products.”

Dow and DuPont have said the specialty products business will be based in Wilmington, while the material science business will be based in Dow’s hometown of Midland, Michigan. Breen said Tuesday that the headquarters for the agriculture business would be announced in the next few weeks.

DuPont expects full-year operating earnings for 2016 in the range of $2.95 to $3.10 per share.

Shares of DuPont Co., have fallen 20 percent since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index has decreased 8 percent. The stock has dropped 28 percent in the last 12 months.

DuPont shares were up 96 cents at $53.35, or 1.7 percent, to $53.95 in morning trading Tuesday. Its shares are down more than 23 percent over the past year.

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National wool and sheep report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/national-wool-and-sheep-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/national-wool-and-sheep-report#Comments Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:46:48 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129916 Wool prices in cents per pound and foreign currency per kilogram, sheep prices in dollars per hundredweight (cwt.) except some replacement animals on per head basis as indicated.

NATIONAL WOOL REVIEW

(USDA Market News)

Greeley, Colo.

Jan. 22

Domestic wool trading on a clean basis was at a standstill this week. There were no confirmed trades. Some spring shearing is starting to take place, and most of the wool will be marketed later in the spring. Currently, there is resistance due to the strong U.S. dollar, though prices remained relatively steady over the fall and winter months.

Domestic wool trading on a greasy basis was at a standstill this week. There were no confirmed trades.

Domestic wool tags

No. 1 $.60-.70

No. 2 $.50-.60

No. 3 $.40-.50

NATIONAL SHEEP SUMMARY

(USDA Market News)

San Angelo, Texas

Jan. 22

Compared to Jan. 15: Slaughter lambs were steady to $20 lower with most decline on light lambs. Slaughter ewes were steady to $7 lower. Feeder lambs were mostly steady to $8 lower.

At San Angelo, Texas, 5,176 head sold in a one-day sale. No sales in Equity Electronic Auction. In direct slaughter ewes and feeder lambs were not tested. 2,900 head of negotiated sales of slaughter lambs were steady. 10,200 head of formula sales under 65 lbs. were not well tested; 65-75 lbs. were $6-8 lower; 75-85 lbs. were steady to $1 higher; 85-95 lbs. were $5-7 lower and over 95 lbs. had no recent comparison. 4,874 carcasses sold with 45 lbs. and down $26.12 higher; 45-55 lbs. $3.31 higher; 55-65 lbs. $3.58 lower; 65-75 lbs. $1.37 lower and 75 lbs. and up $2.90-3.15 lower.

SLAUGHTER LAMBS Choice and Prime 2-3:

San Angelo: shorn and wooled 100-160 lbs. $130-149.

SLAUGHTER LAMBS Choice and Prime 1:

San Angelo: 40-60 lbs. $246-268; 60-70 lbs. $232-248, few $254-256; 70-80 lbs. $220-240; 80-90 lbs. $196-222; 90-105 lbs. $180-200.

DIRECT TRADING (Lambs with 3-4 percent shrink or equivalent):

2 900 Slaughter Lambs shorn and wooled 121-165 lbs. $124.15-155.40 (wtd avg $140.43).

SLAUGHTER EWES:

San Angelo: Good 2-3 (fleshy) no test; Utility and Good 1-3 (medium flesh) $93-102, high-yielding $102-108; Utility 1-2 (thin) $78-88; Cull and Utility 1-2 (very thin) $62; Cull 1 (extremely thin) $54.

FEEDER LAMBS Medium and Large 1-2:

San Angelo: 50-60 lbs. $226-228; 67 lbs. $206; 83 lbs. $181; 96 lbs. $160.

REPLACEMENT EWES Medium and Large 1-2:

San Angelo: baby tooth hair ewes 90-105 lbs. $154-162 cwt; mixed age hair ewes 100-160 lbs. $108-142 cwt.

NATIONAL WEEKLY LAMB CARCASS Choice and Prime 1-4:

Weight Wtd. avg.

45 lbs. Down $511.81

45-55 lbs. $407.52

55-65 lbs. $338.08

65-75 lbs. $309.17

75-85 lbs. $295.26

85 lbs. and up $282.17

Sheep and lamb slaughter under federal inspection for the week to date

totaled 38,000 compared with 39,000 last week and 35,000 last year.

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Selected Western hay prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/selected-western-hay-prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/selected-western-hay-prices#Comments Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:43:54 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129917 Hay prices are dollars per ton or dollars per bale when sold to retail outlets. Basis is current delivery FOB barn or stack, or delivered customer as indicated.

Grade guidelines used in this report have the following relationship to Relative Feed Value (RFV), Acid Detergent Fiber (ADF), TDN (Total Digestible Nutrients), or Crude Protein (CP) test numbers:

Grade RFV ADF TDN CP

Supreme 185+ <27 55.9+ 22+

Premium 170-185 27-29 54.5-55.9 20-22

Good 150-170 29-32 52.5-54.5 18-20

Fair 130-150 32-35 50.5-52.5 16-18

Utility <130 36+ <50.5 <16

WASHINGTON-OREGON HAY

(Columbia Basin)

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Jan. 22

This week FOB Last week Last year

7,660 3,460 7,500

Compared to Jan. 15: Premium Alfalfa and export Alfalfa steady to weak. Trade slow to moderate. Second cutting Timothy for domestic use is $50 lower. Bearish Financial markets have exporters very cautious. Demand remains light to moderate. The Northwest hay expo was also going on this week in Kennewick, Wash. Retail/Feedstore steady. Demand remains good.

Tons Price

Alfalfa Mid Square Premium 300 $160

Good 3100 $135-145

Fair/Good 1200 $115

Timothy Grass Mid Square Utility 1500 $100-115

1000 $60-90

Timothy Grass Small Square Premium 500 $170

60 $150

OREGON AREA HAY

(USDA Market News)

Portland, Ore.

Jan. 22

This week FOB Last week Last year

1,971 2,926 3,273

Compared to Jan. 15: Prices trended generally steady compared to week ago prices. The recent cold snap has increased sales. Many producers have decided to hold on to their hay for now, in hopes for higher prices. Snow has hit some of the hay producing areas. Many hay producers are sold out for the year.

Tons Price

CROOK, DESCHUTES, JEFFERSON, WASCO COUNTIES

Alfalfa Small Square Premium 45 $240

Orchard Grass Small Square Premium 45 $240-250

EASTERN OREGON

Alfalfa Large Square Good 250 $135

Alfalfa/Orchard Mix Small Square Premium 35 $190

Prairie Grass Small Square Good 25 $150

KLAMATH BASIN

Alfalfa Large Square Premium 25 $180

Good/Prem. 400 $170

Fair/Good 300 $135

Fair 80 $125

Small Square Premium 25 $180

75 $180

Good 50 $160

Fescue Grass Small Square Premium 1 $200

Oat Large Square Fair 500 $80

LAKE COUNTY

Alfalfa Small Square Premium 30 $210

60 $200

Good 25 $175

HARNEY COUNTY: No new sales confirmed.

IDAHO HAY

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Jan. 22

This week FOB Last week Last year

2,000 500 775

Compared to Jan. 15: Good and other grades of Alfalfa steady to weak. Trade slow this week as most buyers working on previously bought supplies. Demand remains light. Some dairies from out of state showed some interest in new crop Alfalfa at 150 RFV but no confirmed sales as of yet. Retail/feed store/horse not tested this week.

Tons Price

Alfalfa Mid Square Good 1000 $135

Utility 1000 $80-85

CALIFORNIA HAY

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Jan. 22

This week FOB Last week Last year

17,538 2,875 4,860

Compared to Jan. 15: Trade volume increase from the prior week. Demand has improved to moderate. All regions are receiving moisture in some form with cooler temps in Region 6 slowing alfalfa growth. According to U.S. Drought Monitor, there were still some minor improvements (reduction of D0-D2) made this week in extreme northwestern California.

Tons Price

REGION 1: NORTH INTERMOUNTAIN

Includes the counties of Siskiyou, Modoc, Shasta, Lassen, and Plumas.

Alfalfa Supreme 50 $240

Prem./Sup. 50 $160

Fair/Good 100 $280

Alfalfa/Orchard Mix Prem./Sup. 50 $280

Orchard Grass Premium 25 $320

Good 125 $210

Prairie Grass Premium 100 $240

Forage Mix-Three Way Good 75 $125

REGION 2: Sacramento Valley

Includes the counties of Tehama, Glenn, Butte, Colusa, Sutter, Yuba, Sierra, Nevada, Placer, Yolo, El Dorado, Solano, Sacramento.

No new sales confirmed.

REGION 3: NORTHERN SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY

Includes the counties of San Joaquin, Calaveras, Stanislaus, Tuolumne, Mono, Merced and Mariposa.

Alfalfa Supreme 9 $289

Premium 188 $225

Good/Prem. 13 $170

Alfalfa/Orchard Mix Premium 9 $289

Oat Fair 25 $100-125

Sudan Prem./Sup. 2000 $265

Good 500 $80

Fair/Good 10,000 $100

Rice Straw Good 1000 $80

REGION 4: CENTRAL SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY

Includes the counties of Madera, Fresno, Kings, Tulare, and Inyo.

No new sales confirmed.

REGION 5: SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

Includes the counties of Kern, Northeast Los Angeles, and Western San Bernardino.

Alfalfa Supreme 50 $253

75 $260

Prem./Sup. 75 $240

Forage Mix-Three Way Premium 25 $250

REGION 6: SOUTHEAST CALIFORNIA

Includes the counties of Eastern San Bernardino, Riverside, and Imperial.

Alfalfa Supreme 150 $240

Premium 325 $190-200

Good 100 $150-155

200 $100

Utility 220 $105-124

Bermuda Grass Premium 100 $170

Klein Grass Good 400 $100

Teff Good 1500 $95

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National feeder and stocker cattle report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/national-feeder-and-stocker-cattle-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/national-feeder-and-stocker-cattle-report#Comments Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:38:43 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129918 Cattle prices in dollars per hundredweight (cwt.) except some replacement animals per pair or head as indicated.

NATIONAL FEEDER AND STOCKER CATTLE

(Federal-State Market News)

St. Joseph, Mo.

Jan. 22

This week Last week Last year

331,200 405,000 407,300

Compared to Jan. 15: The bulk of the calves traded mostly $5-15 lower with yearlings selling $5-10 lower. There were instances throughout the trade areas mostly in the Northern Plains and Midwest where 500-750 lb. steers and yearlings over 800 lbs. sold steady, with a few auctions even reporting a higher market; but overall the majority of the markets reported lower prices.

Demand was moderate to good this week as cattle feeders are trading cautiously as they are still faced with losses on outgoing cattle.

The market was pretty optimistic in Ogallala, Neb., on Jan. 21 selling over 7000 head of top quality feeders with over 525 head of 500-550 lbs. steers averaging 528 lbs. sold with a weighted average price of $212.24; with 475 head of their bigger brothers averaging 619 lbs. sold with a weighted average price of $187.06. A three-day weekend might have been what the doctor ordered after Jan. 15 collapsed in the cattle futures with limit losses. Jan. 19 found the coast clear with cattle futures closing with triple-digit gains, this support seemed to bring some stability back to the markets.

But, on Jan. 20 the Stock Market fell hard with global economic jitters as crude oil fell to a 12-year low. This spilled over into the commodity markets with cattle futures closing with triple-digit losses but bouncing back off their early extreme lows. It has been hard to ignore Wall Street starting the year with major losses as outside markets will continue to be a wildcard.

The extreme up and down shifts in the cattle futures continued on Jan. 21 as buying support entered back into the markets with limit to near limit gains for cattle futures. The uptrend continued into Jan. 22 as many markets are looking to close higher on the week after the markets appeared to be on the ropes at midweek as cattle futures closed with sharp triple digit gains on Jan. 22.

The Stock Market also received a reprieve from this week’s rout closing with solid gains on Jan. 21-22. Price risk is hard to determine and a difficult job these days with world markets staying in a volatile mood. The cave-in in crude oil prices could have a negative impact for a number of countries and banks. There is many unknown variables at this point and how situations may or will unfold leaving much uneasiness in the markets.

One of the concerns with the global economic unease, will it continue to affect U.S. beef exports and how will it impact demand? Packer margins are in good shape as boxed-beef has had a good run and hopefully with decent packer margins this will keep fed cattle moving. Boxed-beef prices seem to have topped out and headed lower going into mid-winter.

The price surge since Dec. 21 is starting to pull back with the Jan. 22 close for Choice $2.84 lower at $224.83 compared to the Jan. 15 close at $232.47. Cattle on Feed Report was released Jan. 22 looking neutral to slightly bearish. Cattle on feed came in at 99.5 percent; Placements at 99.2 percent and Marketings at 101 percent. December placements were a little larger than the average estimates and marketings falling a little below the average trade estimate. Auction volume included 57 percent over 600 lbs. and 38 percent heifers.

AUCTIONS

This week Last week Last year

223,800 281,900 302,500

WASHINGTON 3,200. 80 pct over 600 lbs. 42 pct heifers. Steers: Medium and Large 1-2 500-550 lbs183.57; 550-600 lbs. $179.60; 600-650 lbs. $158.59; 650-700 lbs. $161.05; 700-750 lbs. $149.08; 750-800 lbs. $147.40; 800-850 lbs. $144.18; 850-900 lbs. $154.10. Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2 500-550 lbs. $157.94; 550-600 lbs. $155.74; 600-650 lbs. $149.66; 650-700 lbs. $146.80; 700-750 lbs141.49; 750-800 lbs. $139.95; 800-850 lbs. $133.16.

DIRECT

This week Last week Last year

45,200 56,500 29,700

SOUTHWEST (Arizona-California-Nevada) 3,300. No cattle over 600 lbs. No heifers. Holsteins: Large 3 300 lbs. $160-163 May Del; 325 lbs. $150 May Del; 325 lbs. $175 Current Del.

NORTHWEST (Washington-Oregon-Idaho) 2,400. 100 pct over 600 lbs. 50 pct heifers. Steers: Medium and Large 1-2: Current FOB Price: 700-750 lbs. $148 Idaho. Current Delivered Price: Medium and Large 1: 650-700 lbs. $156-157 Idaho; 750-800 lbs. $152-157 Idaho; 850 lbs. $144 Idaho. Large 1: 900-950 lbs. $145-148 Idaho; 900 lbs. $143 for May Idaho. Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2: Current FOB Price: 650 lbs. $141 Oregon. Medium and Large 1: Current Delivered Price: 700-800 lbs. $146-148.50 Idaho; 800-850 lbs. $138-141 Idaho.

NATIONAL SLAUGHTER CATTLE

(USDA Market News)

Oklahoma City, Okla.

Jan. 22

Compared to last week: Slaughter cattle trade remains at a standstill in Texas and Kansas through Jan. 22. Limited trade took place in Nebraska but not enough to test the market. Cattle future rose sharply late in the week, however beef prices continue to decline. Boxed Beef prices Jan. 22 averaged $222.75, which is down $7.05 from Jan. 15. The Choice/Select spread is $4.15. Slaughter cattle on a national basis for negotiated cash trades through Jan. 22 totaled about 5,650 head. The previous week’s total head count was 103,221 head.

Midwest Direct Markets: Live Basis: Steers and Heifers 35-80 Percent Choice, 1200-1400 lbs. few $130.

Slaughter Cows and Bulls (Average Yielding Prices): Slaughter cows and bulls sold steady to $2 higher.

USDA’s Cutter Cow cut-out value Jan. 22 was $165.03 up $1.05 from Jan. 15.

NORTHWEST DIRECT CATTLE

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Jan. 22

This week Last week Last year

2,350 4,300 1,100

Compared to Jan. 15, feeder cattle $1-8 lower, due in part to volatile financial markets. Trade remains slow to moderate with moderate to good demand. The feeder supply included 50 percent steers and 50 percent heifers. Near 100 percent of the supply weighed over 600 lbs. Prices are FOB weighing point with a 1-4 percent shrink or equivalent and with a 5-12 cent slide on calves and a 3-8 cent slide on yearlings. Delivered prices include freight, commissions and other expenses. Current sales are up to 14 days delivery.

Steers: Medium and Large 1-2: Current FOB Price: 700-750 lbs. $148 Idaho. Current Delivered Price: Medium and Large 1: 650-700 lbs. $156-157 Idaho; 750- 800 lbs. $152-157 Idaho; 850 lbs. $144 Idaho. Large 1: 900-950 lbs. $145- 148 Idaho; 900 lbs. $143 for May Idaho.

Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2: Current FOB Price: 650 lbs. $141 Oregon. Medium and Large 1: Current Delivered Price: 700-800 lbs. $146-148.50 Idaho; 800-850 lbs. $138-141 Idaho.

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West Coast grain prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/west-coast-grain-prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/west-coast-grain-prices#Comments Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:38:08 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129919 Grains are stated in dollars per bushel or hundredweight (cwt.) except feed grains traded in dollars per ton. National grain report bids are for rail delivery unless truck indicated.

PORTLAND GRAIN

(USDA Market News)

Portland

Jan. 21

PACIFIC NORTHWEST MARKET SUMMARY

Cash wheat bids for January delivery ended the reporting week on Thursday Jan. 21 steady to higher compared to last week’s noon bids for January delivery.

March wheat futures ended the reporting week on Thursday, Jan. 21, higher as follows compared to the previous week’s closes: Chicago wheat futures were 6.25 cents higher at $4.75, Kansas City wheat futures were three cents higher at $4.7150 and Minneapolis wheat futures trended 7.75 cents higher at $5.25. Chicago March corn futures trended nine cents higher at $3.67 and March soybean futures closed 3.25 cents lower at $8.79.

Bids for U.S. 1 Soft White Wheat delivered to Portland in unit trains or barges during January for ordinary protein were $5.30-5.40, 1.25 to 10 cents per bushel higher than last Thursday’s bids for the same delivery period. Some exporters were not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

There were no white club wheat premiums for this week or last week.

One year ago bids for U.S. 1 Soft White Wheat any protein for January delivery by unit trains and barges to Portland were $6.2475-6.45 and bids for White Club Wheat were 8.2475-9.30.

Forward month bids for soft white wheat ordinary protein were as follows: February and March $5.30-5.40.

One year ago, forward month bids for soft white wheat for any protein were as follows: February $6.2475-6.45, March $6.2475-6.50, April $6.28-6.53 and August New Crop $5.8625-6.25.

Bids for U.S. 1 Soft White Wheat guaranteed maximum 10.5 percent protein during January were $6.25-6.45, steady to 6.25 cents per bushel higher compared to $6.1875-6.45 last week for January delivery. White club wheat premiums for guaranteed maximum 10.5 percent protein soft white wheat were 1 to 1.70 cents per bushel over soft white wheat bids for this week, compared to 1.15 to 1.70 last week.

One year ago bids for U.S. 1 Soft White Wheat any protein for January delivery by unit trains and barges to Portland were $7.3675-7.6175 and bids for White Club Wheat were 9.3675-10.43. Forward month bids for soft white wheat guaranteed 10.5 percent proteins were as follows: February and March $6.25-6.45, April $6.2975-6.45 and August New Crop $5.50-5.5325.

One year ago, forward month bids for soft white wheat for any protein were as follows: February $7.3675-7.6175, March $7.3675-7.65, April $7.40-7.65 and August New Crop $5.8625-6.4125.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein U.S. 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for January delivery were three cents per bushel higher compared to last week’s noon bids for January delivery. This week, bids were as follows: January $5.5650-5.6650, February $5.5650-5.6950, March $5.6650-5.7250 and April $5.6975-5.7475.

Bids for non-guaranteed 14.0 percent protein U.S. 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for Portland delivery during January were 7.75 cents per bushel higher than last week’s noon bids for the same delivery period. Some exporters were not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

This week, bids for non-guaranteed 14 percent protein were as follows: January $6.0525-6.2525, February $6.1025-6.3025, March $6.2025-6.3025, and April $6.2550-6.3550.

COARSE FEEDING GRAINS

Bids for U.S. 2 Yellow Corn delivered full coast Pacific Northwest - BN shuttle trains for January delivery were 11 to 13 cents higher from $4.50-4.54 per bushel. Forward month corn bids were as follows: February $4.50- 4.52, March $4.50-4.51, April and May $4.4975-4.5375 and June $4.5275-4.5375. Bids for U.S. 1 Yellow Soybeans delivered full coast Pacific Northwest - BN shuttle trains for January delivery were 3.25 to 4.25 cents higher from $10.0675-10.0775 per bushel. Forward month soybean bids were as follows: February $9.8650-9.9350, March $9.7850, and October/November $9.5725-9.6725. Bids for U.S. 2 Heavy White Oats for January delivery trended steady at $3.92 per bushel.

PACIFIC NORTHWEST EXPORT NEWS

There were 18 grain vessels in Columbia River ports on Thursday, Jan. 21, with five docked compared to 13 last week with four docked. There were no new confirmed export sales this week from the Commodity Credit Corporation (CCC) of the USDA.

CALIFORNIA GRAINS

(USDA Market News)

Portland

Jan. 21

Prices in dollars per cwt., bulk Inc.= including; Nom.= nominal; Ltd.= limited; Ind.= indicated; NYE=Not fully estimated.

GRAIN DELIVERED

Mode Destination Price per cwt.

BARLEY – U.S. No. 2 (46-lbs. per bushel)

FOB Solano County NA

Rail Los Angeles NA

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

Tulare County NA

Truck Petaluma-Santa Rosa $11.65

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock $11.75-11.85

Kings-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

Madera County NA

Kern County NA

Glenn County NA

Colusa County NA

Solano County NA

CORN-U.S. No. 2 Yellow

FOB Turlock-Tulare $8.46

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

Kings-Tulare-Fresno NA

Rail Single Car Units via BNSF

Chino Valley-Los Angeles $8.98

Truck Petaluma-Santa Rosa NA

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock $8.77

Los Angeles-Chino Valley NA

Kings-Tulare-Fresno Counties $8.77

SORGHUM-U.S. No. 2 Yellow

Rail Los Angeles-Chino Valley

via BNSF Single $9

Truck Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

OATS-U.S. No. 1 White

Truck Los Angeles-Chino Valley NA

OATS-U.S. No. 2 White

Truck Petaluma $12

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

Rail Petaluma NA

WHEAT-U.S. No. 2 or better-Hard Red Winter

(Domestic Values for Flour Milling)

Los Angeles 12 percent Protein NA

Los Angeles 13 percent Protein NA

Los Angeles 14 percent Protein NA

Truck/Rail Los Angeles 11-12 percent Protein

Los Angeles 12 percent Protein NA

Los Angeles 13 percent Protein NA

Los Angeles 14 percent Protein NA

WHEAT-U.S. Durum Wheat

Truck Imperial County $10

Kings-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

WHEAT-Any Class for Feed

FOB Tulare NA

Kings-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

Colusa County NA

Truck/Rail Los Angeles-Chino Valley NA

Truck Petaluma-Santa Rosa NA

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

King-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

Fresno NA

Merced County NA

Colusa County NA

Kern County NA

Prices paid to California farmers, seven-day reporting period ending Jan. 21:

BARLEY, U.S. No 2, 48 lbs per bushel

Petaluma $11.65 Spot Del Locally

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California shell egg prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/california-shell-egg-prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20160125/california-shell-egg-prices#Comments Mon, 25 Jan 2016 15:31:45 -0500 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2016160129920 Shell egg marketer’s benchmark price for negotiated egg sales of USDA Grade AA and Grade AA in cartons, cents per dozen. This price does not reflect discounts or other contract terms.

DAILY CALIFORNIA SHELL EGGS

(USDA Market News)

Des Moines, Iowa

Jan. 22

Benchmark prices are steady. Asking prices for next week are 40 cents higher for Jumbo, 59 cents higher for Extra Large and Large and 62 cents higher for Medium and Small. The undertone is steady to higher. Retail demand is usually good with loose egg sales moderate to fairly good. Offerings are light. Supplies are tight to moderate. Market activity is moderate to active. Small benchmark price $1.18.

Size Range Size Range

Jumbo 254 Extra large 229

Large 224 Medium 138

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA

Prices to retailers, sales to volume buyers, USDA Grade AA and Grade AA, white eggs in cartons, delivered store door.

Size Range Size Range

Jumbo 206-217 Extra large 155-167

Large 156-165 Medium 76-85

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