Capital Press | Nation/World http://www.capitalpress.com Capital Press Tue, 28 Oct 2014 14:50:02 -0400 en http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/staticimage/images/rss-logo.jpg Capital Press | Nation/World http://www.capitalpress.com Pulse crop production down as prices rise http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20141028/pulse-crop-production-down-as-prices-rise http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20141028/pulse-crop-production-down-as-prices-rise#Comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 13:35:32 -0400 Sean Ellis http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029863 Total production of pulse crops — dry peas, lentils and chickpeas — in Idaho and Washington was down significantly this year but prices are on the rise.

“There is some reason for optimism in the pulse industry,” said Tim McGreevy, executive director of the USA Dry Pea & Lentil Council. “Here in the Pacific Northwest, they got the quality, just not the yields that they wanted.”

Prices for new crop lentils and green peas have risen a few cents a pound over the past 60 days, said Dirk Hammond, administrative services manager for George F. Brocke and Sons, a processor of peas, lentils and chickpeas in Kendrick, Idaho.

“Supplies are definitely down this year (and) prices for peas and lentils certainly face upward movement,” he said.

A major hail storm and other weather-related challenges in 2014 significantly reduced pulse crop production in Washington and Idaho, which together produce about 85 percent of all the chickpeas in the country and about 20 percent of all peas and lentils.

Hammond said chickpea yields in the region averaged 1,000 pounds an acre, well below the typical 1,500 pounds an acre, and lentil yields also averaged 1,000 pounds, significantly below the typical 1,400.

Green pea yields averaged well above 2,000 pounds an acre last year but about 1,500-1,600 pounds an acre this year.

Pulse farmers in Canada and other states such as North Dakota and Montana have also faced significant growing and quality challenges, and total pulse crop production in North America is down significantly, Hammond said.

“North American yields are down and there are some quality issues, which should support stronger prices down the road,” he said.

Canada, the world’s largest exporter of lentils, had a very poor quality lentil crop this year, said McGreevy.

Lentil prices in the United States are on the rise and are at about 30 cents a pound right now, 5 cents higher than when contract prices were being set earlier this year, he said.

“We are certainly seeing some upward pressure on lentil prices right now, especially if you have any good quality lentils,” he said.

McGreevy said North America will have a limited supply of quality green peas and stock levels for that crop are low.

“Things are looking good for green peas and they potentially could have a little bit of a rally,” he said.

There is a limited supply of quality chickpeas in North America also but stock levels for that crop are higher, McGreevy said. However, chickpea prices are holding firm.

“Chickpea prices are certainly not going down,” he said. “There is the potential we could see some strengthening or pricing in the new year some time.”

While pulse production in Washington and Idaho was off this year, quality was good, said Todd Scholz, the USADPLC’s vice president for research.

“There is a lot of hope ... that prices will go up some, especially for the higher quality stuff (and) it looks like the Pacific Northwest has some pretty good quality stuff,” he said.

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Northwest Agriculture Business Center gets USDA grant http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20141028/northwest-agriculture-business-center-gets-usda-grant http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20141028/northwest-agriculture-business-center-gets-usda-grant#Comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 11:15:48 -0400 Don Jenkins http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029866 The Northwest Agriculture Business Center has received a $200,000 federal grant to organize farmers and ranchers in northwest Washington to sell to local restaurants, grocery stores and institutions.

“We believe the cooperative model is a really effective way for agriculture producers to become stakeholders in the food system,” the center’s project manager, Jeff Voltz, said. “We believe the market is there.”

The U.S. Department of Agriculture on Oct. 24 handed out Rural Cooperative Development Grants to 32 organizations, totaling $5.8 million.

This is the fourth year in a row the Bellingham-based business center has received such a grant. The center will add $70,000 to the federal grant to support several projects, including two new co-ops.

The North Cascade Meat Producers Cooperative should start selling meat from 36 producers sometime next year in Skagit, Snohomish, Whatcom and Island counties, Voltz said.

The Snoqualmie Valley Farmers Cooperative, formed last winter, will involve eight King County farms, he said.

Other center programs the grant will support include the Puget Sound Food Hub, Seattle Wholesale Growers Market Cooperative and Snohomish Valley Flour Mill Cooperative.

The center also assists the Island Grown Farmers Cooperative, Northwest Cider Association, Port Susan Food & Farming Center, Red Rooster Marketing Association, the San Juan Agricultural Guild-Island Grown marketing association, Skagit Fresh Natural Beverage Company, Whidbey Island Grown marketing organization and Whatcom Growers Collaborative, a proposed cooperative.

Administered by the USDA, the grants went for a wide-range of projects.

The Northwest Cooperative Development Center in Olympia will receive $200,000 to assess developing businesses in Washington, Oregon and Hawaii.

The Community and Shelter Assistance Corporation in Sherwood, Ore., will receive $121,030 to assist five housing cooperatives in Oregon.

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House Dems again seek vote on wildfire bill http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20141028/house-dems-again-seek-vote-on-wildfire-bill http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20141028/house-dems-again-seek-vote-on-wildfire-bill#Comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 10:54:11 -0400 Tim Hearden http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029867 SACRAMENTO — Two prominent California Democrats are again pressuring the House of Representatives’ Republican leadership to bring up a bill that would protect forest management in the federal wildfire disaster budget.

In a letter to House Speaker John Boehner and Democratic leader Nancy Pelosi, Rep. John Garamendi, D-Calif., urged that House Resolution 3992 be considered in the lame-duck session.

The bill by Reps. Mike Simpson, R-Idaho, and Kurt Schrader, D-Ore., would force the U.S. Forest Service and other agencies to use contingency money rather than dipping into the forest management account when firefighting costs balloon beyond appropriated levels.

“This transfer takes much-needed funding from forest management and fire prevention efforts, resulting in an endless and vicious cycle of devastating wildfires, dangerous containment efforts, and scant resources for prevention of the next big fire,” Garamendi wrote in the Oct. 27 letter.

Pelosi, who is from San Francisco, responded by calling for Boehner to schedule an immediate vote on the measure.

“Wildfire funding is a crucial issue for California, and it is long past time for a vote,” Pelosi spokeswoman Evangeline George said in an email.

Boehner’s office did not answer emails from the Capital Press seeking comment. The speaker had not responded to Garamendi as of late Oct. 27, the Sacramento congressman said in an email.

The latest push comes after Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., circulated a discharge petition this summer to force a House floor vote on the Wildfire Disaster Funding Act, which proponents say would fund the cost of fighting the biggest wildfires the same way as the costs of other natural disasters such as tornadoes and earthquakes are funded.

Pelosi and Garamendi signed the petition, but it fell short of the 218 signatures it would have needed to bring the legislation to the floor.

The bill itself has more than 100 cosponsors, including Rep. Doug LaMalfa, R-Calif., who serves with Schrader and Garamendi on the House Agriculture Committee. LaMalfa “would like to see it move forward,” spokesman Kevin Eastman said.

The bill aims to curb the raiding of non-fire accounts to pay for wildfire suppression when costs exceed an agency’s budget. As such, the plan would allow more money to be spent on hazardous fuels reduction and other prevention efforts designed to reduce the number of huge wildfires that have plagued the western U.S. in recent years.

Secretary of the Interior Sally Jewell told reporters earlier this year that the federal government’s 2013 fire suppression costs exceeded the 10-year average by $500 million. As happens too often, she said, federal officials had to raid other budgets that fund the prevention efforts to come up with the extra money.

As fire seasons have grown longer and more destructive, such “borrowing” has become regular practice, Simpson has argued. The Forest Service has exceeded its wildfire suppression budgets in eight of the past 10 years, he has said.

Garamendi, a former deputy secretary of the U.S. Department of the Interior, said this week the lame-duck session after the election tends to reduce partisan pressures, which makes passage of legislation more likely.

“There is broad bipartisan support for a smarter approach to wildfire funding,” he told the Capital Press in his email. “If we focus on prevention and create an insurance fund against massive fires as we do for other natural disasters, we would save money and better protect the public. This approach and these goals are shared by both parties.”

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141028/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141028/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Tue, 28 Oct 2014 10:37:50 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029870 Portland, Ore., Tuesday, Oct. 28

USDA Market News

Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon during October by unit trains and barges, in dollars per bushel, except oats, corn and barley, in dollars per cwt. Bids for soft white wheat are for delivery periods as specified. Hard red winter wheat and dark northern spring wheat bids are for full October delivery. Bids for corn are for 30 day delivery.

In early trading December wheat futures trended 6.50 to 9.50 cents per bushel higher than Monday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat for October delivery in unit trains or barges were not fully established in early trading but bids were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. The higher Chicago December wheat futures supported cash bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading, but were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids. The higher Kansas City December wheat futures supported cash bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 14 percent protein non-guaranteed US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading but were indicated as higher compared to Monday’s noon bids. The higher Minneapolis December wheat futures supported cash bids.

Bids for US 2 Yellow Corn delivered to Portland and the Yakima Valley were not available.

All wheat bids in dollars per bushel

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

Oct mostly 6.9975, ranging 6.8725-7.1225

Nov 6.8100-7.1725

Dec 6.8100-7.2225

Jan 6.8800-7.3575

Feb 6.8800-6.9075

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

Oct mostly 9.2475, ranging 9.1225-9.3725

Not fully established and limited.

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

better)

Ordinary protein 7.3675-7.5175

10 pct protein 7.3675-7.5175

11 pct protein 7.4475-7.5975

11.5 pct protein

Oct 7.4875-7.6375

12 pct protein 7.4875-7.6375

13 pct protein 7.4875-7.6375

Not fully established and limited.

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 7.6825-7.8325

14 pct protein

Oct 9.2325-9.2825

15 pct protein 10.0325-10.2325

16 pct protein 10.8325-11.2325

Not fully established and limited.

US 2 Yellow Corn in dollars per CWT

Domestic-single rail cars

Delivered full coast-BN NA

Delivered to Portland NA

Rail and Truck del to Willamette Vly NA

Rail del to Yakima Valley NA

Truck del to Yakima Valley NA

US 2 Heavy White Oats in dollars per CWT 13.2500

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Sep 2014

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges 6.7500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 7.0200

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 7.1500

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 8.3400

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

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Western hay market report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/western-hay-market-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/western-hay-market-report#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 14:42:01 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029878 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.

Oct. 24

This week FOB Last week Last year

5,590 1,080 5,726

Compared to Oct. 17: Alfalfa for domestic and export steady to weak in a light test. Trade slow this week as rain showers where reported across the trade area. Demand light to moderate as some exporters are looking for GMO-free supplies. Timothy for domestic steady.

Tons Price

Alfalfa Large Square Prem./Sup. 2800 $235-240 Del

Fair/Good 200 $180-200

100 $180

1300 $185

Alfalfa Small Square Premium 120 $260-270

Good/Prem. 140 $230-260

Orchard Grass Small Square Premium 130 $250-275

Timothy Grass Large Square Good 800 $100-105

OREGON AREA HAY

(USDA Market News)

Portland, Ore.

Oct. 24

This week FOB Last week Last year

5,280 21,573 16,242

Compared to Oct. 17: Prices mostly steady compared to the previous week’s offerings for the same quality. Trading was light to moderate during the week with a smaller volume of hay traded than last week. More producers have sold all that they plan to sell for this season.

Tons Price

CROOK, DESCHUTES, JEFFERSON, WASCO COUNTIES

Alfalfa Small Square Supreme 25 $250

9 $260

Alfalfa/Orchard Mix Small Square Premium 3 $270

Orchard Grass Small Square Premium 50 $240

15 $260-270

Meadow Grass Small Square Premium 25 $230

EASTERN OREGON

Alfalfa Large Square Good 500 $180-205

HARNEY COUNTY

Alfalfa Large Square Supreme 550 $235

KLAMATH BASIN

Alfalfa Large Square Premium 200 $320

Mid Square Supreme 120 $275

Good 25 $200

100 $195

Alfalfa/Orchard Mix Small Square Premium 100 $265

Orchard Grass Small Square Premium 25 $275

LAKE COUNTY

Alfalfa Large Square Supreme 2320 $250

Premium 34 $225

Good/Prem. 34 $200

Good 228 $185

Small Square Supreme 57 $250

Good/Prem. 50 $200

Timothy Grass Large Square Premium 250 $180

Oat Large Square Good 500 $140

IDAHO HAY

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Oct. 24

This week FOB Last week Last year

13,180 3,800 3,000

Compared to Oct. 17: Premium and Supreme testing Alfalfa steady. Trade slow this week with good demand for non-rained-on high testing supplies. Retail/feed store/horse not tested this week.

Tons Price

Alfalfa Large Square Supreme 3430 $233.67

500 $200

Fair/Good 1000 $150

Wheat Straw Large Square Fair 100 $22

CALIFORNIA HAY

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Oct. 17

This week FOB Last week Last year

5030 13,180 3100

Compared to Oct. 17: All classes trading mostly steady with a weaker undertone noted. Demand light and trading activity slow. Most regions are finishing up or about to finish with the 2014 hay season. Some producers are opting to not cut their last cutting and turning livestock out to assist with the high feed costs. Other producers are sticking their remaining cuttings into the barn or under tarp until later this year or early 2015. Region 1 and parts of Region 2 received some rain this week, hindering the last cutting of the year. Region 3 is either finishing up on their sixth or beginning their seventh.

REGION 1: North Inter-Mountain

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

Tons Price

Alfalfa Supreme 1000 $275-280

75 $310-315

Orchard Grass Premium 25 $300

REGION 2: Sacramento Valley

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

Tons Price

Alfalfa Supreme 200 $300

Premium 75 $240 Retail/Stable

Fair 500 $175 Grassy

Utility 125 $140-150

300 $160

Oat Hay Good 50 $240

Fair 50 $215

Sudan Good 200 $190

Wheat Straw Good 25 $135

REGION 3: Northern San Joaquin Valley

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

Tons Price

Alfalfa Supreme 175 $260

250 $330

Premium 150 $285

25 $250

Fair 750 $197

REGION 4: Central San Joaquin Valley

No new sales confirmed.

REGION 5: Southern California

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

Tons Price

Alfalfa Premium 25 $280

Good/Prem. 50 $260

REGION 6: Southeast California

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

Tons Price

Alfalfa Premium 100 $225

Fair 1000 $140

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West Coast grain markets http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/west-coast-grain-markets http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/west-coast-grain-markets#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 14:33:29 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029879 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

Oct. 23

PACIFIC NORTHWEST MARKET SUMMARY

Cash wheat bids for October delivery ended the reporting week on Thursday, Oct. 23, mixed compared to the previous week’s October bids. Soft white wheat bids moved higher, while hard red winter wheat and dark northern spring wheat bids trended mixed.

Bids for U.S. 1 Soft White Wheat delivered to Portland in unit trains or barges during October were $9.75 to 16.75 cents per bushel higher, from $6.8175-7.0675, mostly $6.9350. Bids for Oct. 16 for October delivery were $6.65-6.97, mostly $6.8025.

White club wheat premiums for this week were $2 to $2.75, mostly $2.42 while the previous week’s premium was $2 to $2.75, mostly $2.48 over soft white wheat bids.

One year ago bids for U.S. 1 Soft White Wheat delivered by unit trains and barges to Portland were $7.3475-7.3675, mostly $7.3575 and White Club Wheat were $7.7675-7.8475, mostly $7.8075. Nearby bids for U.S. 1 Soft White wheat began the reporting week on Oct. 17 at mostly $6.8075 and rose steadily through the week. On Oct. 20, mostly $6.8175, on Oct. 21 mostly $6.86, on Oct. 22 mostly $6.89 and ended the reporting week Oct. 23 at mostly $6.9350.

Forward month bids for soft white wheat were as follows: November $6.79-7.1175, December $6.79-7.1675, January and February $6.8525-7.2525. One year ago, forward month bids for soft white wheat were November $7.3975-7.4175, December $7.3975-7.4675, January $7.4650-7.5150 and February $7.50-7.5450.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein U.S. 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for October delivery trended mixed, from 14.75 cents lower to a .25 cent per bushel higher compared to last week’s bids. Some exporters lowered their basis which pressured bids. On Thursday, bids were as follows: October $7.5025-7.6525, mostly $7.5825; November and December $7.5025-7.7025; January and February $7.5275-7.7275.

Bids for non-guaranteed 14.0 percent protein U.S. 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for Portland delivery for full October delivery trended mixed, from 5.50 lower to 4.50 cents per bushel higher compared to last week’s bids. The lower Minneapolis December wheat futures weighed on bids, although some exporters raised their basis which supported the bids. On Thursday, bids for non-guaranteed 14 percent protein were as follows: October $9.11-9.21, mostly $9.17; November and December $9.11-9.21; January and February $9.0525-9.3025.

COARSE FEEDING GRAINS

Bids for U.S. 2 Yellow Corn delivered to Portland in single rail cars were not available. Bids for U.S. 2 Yellow Corn truck delivered to the inland feeding areas of Yakima, Wash., and Hermiston, Ore., were also not available. Bids for U.S. 2 Heavy White Oats for October delivery held steady at 265.

PACIFIC NORTHWEST EXPORT NEWS

There were 15 grain vessels in Columbia River ports on Thursday, Oct. 23, with five docked compared to 12 on Oct. 16 with four docked. There were no new confirmed export sales from the Commodity Credit Corporation this week.

CALIFORNIA GRAINS

(USDA Market News)

Portland

Oct. 23

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)

Rail Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

Tulare County NA

Truck Petaluma-Santa Rosa NA

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

Kings-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

Kern County NA

Glenn County NA

CORN - U.S. No. 2 Yellow

FOB Turlock $9.10

Rail Single Car Units via BNSF

Chino Valley-Los Angeles $10.17-10.21

Truck Petaluma-Santa Rosa $9.41

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock $9.41

Los Angeles-Chino Valley NA

Kings-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

SORGHUM - U.S. No. 2 Yellow

Rail Los Angeles-Chino Valley

via BNSF Single $10.37

Truck Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

OATS - U.S. No. 1 White

Truck Los Angeles-Chino Valley $15.60

OATS - U.S. No. 2 White

Truck Petaluma NA

Rail Petaluma NA

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

(Domestic Values for Flour Milling)

Los Angeles 12 percent Protein $14.47

Los Angeles 13 percent Protein $14.67

Los Angeles 14 percent Protein $15.75

Truck/Rail Los Angeles 11-12 percent Protein

Los Angeles 12 percent Protein $13.75

Los Angeles 13 percent Protein NA

Los Angeles 14 percent Protein NA

WHEAT - U.S. Durum Wheat

Truck Imperial County NA

Kings-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

WHEAT - Any Class for Feed

FOB Tulare NA

Truck/Rail Los Angeles-Chino Valley $13-14.25

Truck Petaluma-Santa Rosa NA

Stockton-Modesto-Oakdale-Turlock NA

King-Tulare-Fresno Counties NA

Merced County NA

Colusa County $11.25

Kern County NA

Prices paid to California farmers, seven-day reporting period ending Oct. 23:

WHEAT, U.S. No. 2 or better, Hard White Wheat 13 percent Protein

Kern $11.20 Spot Del Locally

WHEAT, U.S. No. 1, Hard Amber Durum for Flour Milling

Imperial $20 OC Del Locally

Imperial $18 NC 2015 Del Locally

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California egg prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/california-egg-prices http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/california-egg-prices#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 14:33:25 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029880 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

Oct. 24

Benchmark prices are steady. Asking prices for next week are 1 cent higher for Jumbo, 3 cents higher for Extra Large and unchanged on the remainder of sizes. Trade sentiment is mostly steady to instances higher. Offerings and demand are moderate. Supplies are balanced for immediate needs. Market activity is slow to mostly moderate. Small benchmark price $1.25.

Size Range Size Range

Jumbo 159 Extra large 166

Large 159 Medium 145

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 141-153 Extra large 144-156

Large 136-147 Medium 125-134

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National slaughter, feeder and stocker report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/national-slaughter-feeder-and-stocker-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/national-slaughter-feeder-and-stocker-report#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 14:23:26 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029881 Cattle prices in dollars per hundredweight (cwt.) except some replacement animals per pair or head as indicated.

NATIONAL SLAUGHTER CATTLE

(Federal-State Market News)

Oklahoma City-Des Moines

Oct. 24

Compared to Oct. 17: Slaughter cattle $6 higher on a live basis. Dressed sales in Nebraska $7 higher.

Boxed beef prices Oct. 24 averaged $239.74, which is $2.23 lower than Oct. 17. The Choice/Select spread is $14.60. Slaughter cattle on a national basis for negotiated cash trades through Oct. 24 totaled about 52,000 head. The previous week’s total head count was 100,078 head.

Midwest Direct Markets: Live Basis: Steers and Heifers 35-80 Percent Choice, 1200-1400 lbs. $170; Dressed Basis: Steers and Heifers $265.

South Plains Direct Markets: Live Basis: Steers and Heifers 35-65 percent Choice, 1100-1400 lbs. $170.

Slaughter Cows and Bulls (Average Yielding Prices): Slaughter cows and bulls steady to $4 higher.

USDA’s Cutter cow carcass cut-out value Oct. 24 was $233.96 up $.77 from Oct. 17.

NATIONAL FEEDER AND STOCKER CATTLE

(Federal-State Market News)

St. Joseph, Mo.

Oct. 24

This week Last week Last year

377,100 291,600 383,000

Compared to Oct. 17: Feeder cattle and calves sold very uneven as prices on yearlings traded unevenly steady; early in the week mostly steady to $5 lower then firming up mid-week trading steady $5 higher. The calf market remains very uneven and volatile with the month of October showing some pressure this week on new arrivals of new crop bawlers which is typical of autumn as market pressure was noted this week on those unweaned calves in which supplies always outweighs demand at this time of year.

There were instances on lightweight calves under 450 lbs. that sold $10-15 lower as prices for these lightweight calves have been very lofty. Calves weighing 450-650 lbs. all traded with very wide price ranges and trends across the trading areas from unevenly steady to $5 higher to $5 lower. Also of note at several auctions, a lighter presence of farmer feeders due to harvest getting back into full swing this week.

USDA reported slower harvest pace than normal with 31 percent of the corn harvested with the five-year average of 53 percent. Soybeans are also behind with 53 percent harvested with the five-year average at 66 percent. Unweaned bawlers will continue to be scrutinized with additional discounts for being fleshy or having a snotty nose as health issues will always be a concern.

Most cattle growers would love to fill their orders with calves weaned at least 45 days and an extensive precondition program, but many calves are coming to the auction right off the cow and in many cases with little use of knives or needles.

Wheat pasture prospects look very bright across much of the Hard Red Winter Wheat regions as demand for stockers remain very good with Corn Belt cattlemen having lots of silage, hay and corn.

In Bassett, Neb., on Oct. 22 the replacement heifer offering was in very good shape as a near pot load of fancy replacement heifers weighing 555 lbs. sold at $372 or $2064 per head.

In Philip, S.D., on Oct. 21 over 1200 head of 500-550 lb steers averaging 531 lbs. sold with a weighted average price of $309.68.

Last week’s fully steady fat cattle trade was a big positive with the meltdown that occurred in the Stock Market and swept through many of the commodity markets as economic situations have calmed down in the short term.

On Thursday afternoon fat cattle trade busted loose in a big way as live prices again hit record highs in the Southern Plains and Nebraska with live prices $5-6 higher at $170. Packers needed inventory to secure needs proving that supply and demand still has a valid presence. The next question is where do boxed beef prices go from here, leaving plenty of questions for traders to ponder as live and feeder cattle futures on Oct. 24 closed with triple digit losses. Traders seemed more concerned with the Oct. 24 Cattle on Feed Report that ended up being right in line with industry guesses.

The report would be viewed as neutral as Oct. 1 inventory was reported at 99.5 percent of a year ago; placements at 101.0 percent of a year ago; marketings at 99.5 percent of a year ago. The week’s auction volume included 37 percent over 600 lbs. and 37 percent heifers.

AUCTIONS

This week Last week Last year

315,200 247,800 320,400

WASHINGTON 4,100. 45 pct over 600 lbs. 40 pct heifers. Steers: Medium and Large 1-2 400-450 lbs. $280.08; 450-500 lbs. $279.41; 550-600 lbs. $246.90; 600-650 lbs. $239.07; 650-700 lbs. $239.54; 700-750 lbs. $237.74; 750-800 lbs. $231.54. Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2 400-450 lbs. $272.84; 450-500 lbs. $257.05; 500-550 lbs. $244.54; 550-600 lbs. $243.81; 600-650 lbs. $235.98; 650-700 lbs. $230.46; 700-750 lbs. $210.94; 850-900 lbs. $175.73.

DIRECT

This week Last week Last year

58,000 23,800 59,200

SOUTHWEST (Arizona-California-Nevada) 1,500. No cattle over 600 lbs. No heifers. Holsteins: Large 3 275 lbs. $323 February Del; 300 lbs. $309.50-311 February Del.

NORTHWEST (Washington-Oregon-Idaho) 2,700. 81 pct over 600 lbs. 29 pct heifers. Steers: Medium and Large 1-2 Current FOB Delivery 500-550 lbs. $265-280 Washington-Idaho; 650 lbs. $241-250 calves Washington-Idaho; 850-900 lbs. $216-218 Washington-Idaho. Current Delivery Delivered Price 850 lbs. $215 Idaho; 850 lbs. $232 value added Idaho. Future Delivery FOB Price 650-700 lbs. $245 for February. Washington. Future Delivery Delivered Price 800 lbs. $220 for January-February Idaho; 900 lbs. $219 for November-December. Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2 Current FOB Delivery 550-600 lbs. $256-265 Idaho; 850-900 lbs. $210-218 Idaho-Washington. Current Delivery Delivered Price 850 lbs. $210 Idaho. Future Delivery Delivered Price 600 lbs. $257 calves for December-January Idaho; 750-800 lbs. $214-220 for December-February Idaho.

NORTHWEST DIRECT CATTLE

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Oct. 24

This week Last week Last year

2,700 2,100 11,250

Compared to Oct. 17: Feeder cattle steady to firm. Trade slow with good demand as slaughter cattle traded at $170 live at the end of the week. The feeder supply included 71 percent steers and 29 percent heifers. Near 81 percent of the supply weighed over 600 lbs. Prices are FOB weighing point with a 1-4 percent shrink or equivalent and with a 5-10 cent slide on calves and a 3-7 cent slide on yearlings. Delivered prices include freight, commissions and other expenses.

Steers: Medium and Large 1-2: Current FOB Delivery: 500-550 lbs. $265-280 Washington-Idaho; 650 lbs. $241-250 calves Washington-Idaho; 850-900 lbs. $216-218 Washington-Idaho. Current Delivery Delivered Price: 850 lbs. $215 Idaho; 850 lbs. $232 value added Idaho. Future Delivery FOB Price: 650-700 lbs. $245 for February. Washington. Future Delivery Delivered Price: 800 lbs. $220 for January-February Idaho; 900 lbs. $219 for November-December.

Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2: Current FOB Delivery: 550-600 lbs. $256-265 Idaho; 850-900 lbs. $210-218 Idaho-Washington. Current Delivery Delivered Price: 850 lbs. $210 Idaho. Future Delivery Delivered Price: 600 lbs. $257 calves for December-January Idaho; 750-800 lbs. $214-220 for December-February Idaho.

Bred Heifers (Per Head): Medium and Large 1-2: Current FOB Delivery: 950 lbs. $2600 3-6 mos. bred Oregon.

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Selected regional livestock auctions http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/selected-regional-livestock-auctions http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/selected-regional-livestock-auctions#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 14:09:54 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029882 Cattle prices in dollars per hundredweight (cwt.) except some replacement animals per pair or head as indicated.

California

SHASTA

(Shasta Livestock Auction)

Cottonwood, Calif.

Oct. 24

Current week Last week

3,800 1,881

Compared to Oct. 17: Slaughter cows and bulls steady. Calves under 450 lbs. $10-$15 higher with greater supply, balance of cattle steady to $5 higher. Off lots and singles $20-50 below top offerings.

Slaughter cows: Breakers $104-112, $113-125 high dress; Boning $95-103; Cutters $80-94.

Bulls 1 and 2: $103-119; $113-125 high dress.

Feeder steers: 300-400 lbs. $310-362.50; 400-450 lbs. $300-347.50; 450-500 lbs. $270-300; 500-550 lbs. $255-285; 550-600 lbs. $235-267.50; 600-650 lbs. $230-259; 650-700 lbs. $225-249.50; 700-750 lbs. $220-245; 750-800 lbs. $220-235; 800-900 lbs. $215-231.

Feeder heifers: 300-400 lbs. $285-345; 400-450 lbs. $280-313; 450-500 lbs. $245-285; 500-550 lbs. $225-253; 550-600 lbs. $215-245.50; 600-650 lbs. $215-245; 650-700 lbs. $210-238; 700-750 lbs. $210-231; 750-800 lbs. $215; 800-900 lbs. $205-217.

Calvy cows: Full mouth pairs $2600-3125; Broken mouth pairs $2100-2400.

Pairs: Full mouth cows $2000-2700; Broken mouth cows $1450-2000.

Idaho

CALDWELL

(Treasure Valley Livestock)

Oct. 24

Steers: 200-300 lbs. $320; 300-400 lbs. $240.75; 400-500 lbs. $205.25; 500-600 lbs. $182.25; 600-700 lbs. $174.25; 700-800 lbs. $153.75; 800-900 lbs. $165.50; 900-1000 lbs. $154; 1000 lbs. and up $120.50.

Heifers: 200-300 lbs. $255; 300-400 lbs. $234.25; 400-500 lbs. $190.75; 500-600 lbs. $184.25; 600-700 lbs. $156; 700-800 lbs. $138.50; 800-900 lbs. $127.75; 900-1000 lbs. $127.75; 1000 lbs. and up $126.25.

Cows (wt.): 700-800 lbs. $82.75; 800-900 lbs. $86.75; 900-1000 lbs. $82.50; 1000-1100 lbs. $97.25; 1100-1200 lbs. $89.75; 1200-1300 lbs. $89.75; 1300-1400 lbs. $90.25; 1400-1500 lbs. $103.50; 1500-1600 lbs. $104.50; 1600-1700 lbs. $105; 1700-1800 lbs. $108.25; 1800-1900 lbs. $107; 1900-2000 lbs. $108.25.

Bull calves (wt.): 300-400 lbs. $292.50; 400-500 lbs. $225; 500-600 lbs. $186.50; 800-900 lbs. $144; 900-1000 lbs. $145.75; 1100-1200 lbs. $106; 1200-1300 lbs. $120; 1300-1400 lbs. $116.

Bulls (wt.): 1600-1700 lbs. $113.50; 1700-1800 lbs. $129; 1800-1900 lbs. $117; 1900-2000 lbs. $123.50.

Pairs (hd.): 1000 lbs. and up $1750.

Bred heifers (hd.): 800 lbs. and up $1825.

Stock cows (hd.): 800 lbs. and up $1085.

Bull calves (hd.): 100-200 lbs. $400; 200-300 lbs. $560; 300-400 lbs. $250.

Heifer calves (hd.): 100-200 lbs. $335; 200-300 lbs. $385; 300-400 lbs. $475.

Steer calves (hd.): 100-200 lbs. $335; 200-300 lbs. $610; 300-400 lbs. $420; 400-500 lbs. $425.

Washington

TOPPENISH

(Toppenish Livestock Auction)

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

Oct. 24

This week Last week Last year

2,000 1,645 1,900

Compared to Oct. 17 at the same sale: Stocker and feeder cattle $1-2 lower. Trade slow to moderate with light to moderate demand as most offerings were offered in small lots and singles. Slaughter cows $2-3 higher. Slaughter bulls $1-2 lower. Trade active with good demand. Slaughter cows 65 percent, Slaughter bulls 5 percent, and feeders 30 percent of the supply. The feeder supply included 55 percent steers and 45 percent heifers. Near 44 percent of the run weighed over 600 lbs.

Feeder Steers: Medium and Large 1-2: 400-500 lbs. $260-272; 400-500 lbs. $286, Thin Fleshed; 500-600 lbs. $236-246; 500-600 lbs. $260-270, Thin Fleshed; 600-700 lbs. $230-240, Calves; 600-700 lbs. $227, Full; 700-800 lbs. $217; 800-900 lbs. $209. Large 1-2: 900-1000 lbs. $180-190; 1000-1100 lbs. $182. Small and Medium 1-2: 400-500 lbs. $250; 600-700 lbs. $207.50, Full.

Feeder Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2: 300-400 lbs. $270; 400-500 lbs. $250-253; 400-500 lbs. $270, Thin Fleshed; 500-600 lbs. $245-256; 500-600 lbs. $241, Full; 600-700 lbs. $220-227, Calves; 600-700 lbs. $235, Thin Fleshed; 700-800 lbs. $208.75-210; 800-900 lbs. $172.50-180. Large 1-2: 900-1000 lbs. $180. Small and Medium 1-2: 300-400 lbs. $240; 400-500 lbs. $167.50, Full; 600-700 lbs. $217-219; 600-700 lbs. $190, Full. Small 4: 300-400 lbs. $275, Per Head.

Slaughter Cows:

Boning 80-85 percent lean 1200-1900 lbs. $111-117; Lean 85-90 percent lean 1100-1600 lbs. $110-116; Lean 90 percent lean 1000-1400 lbs. $97-102.

Slaughter Bulls: Yield Grade 1-2 1400-2400 lbs. $124-134.

Bred Cows (Per Head): Medium and Large 1-2: Young (3-4 yrs. old) 1050-1300 lbs. $2600-2700, few $2225 3-6 mos. bred. Mid-Aged (6 yrs. old) $2450-2575. Few $2000 3-6 mos. bred.

Oregon

VALE

(Producers Livestock Market)

Oct. 22

Total receipts: 2,224 head.

Market comment: Steady and active market on the lighter weight grass calves under 525 lbs., most noticeably on the steer side. Heavier weight calves and yearlings showing a softer undertone $2-7 cheaper.

Steer calves: 300-400 lbs. $337-377; 400-500 lbs. $278-356; 500-600 lbs. $244-286.

Heifer calves: 300-400 lbs. $306-342; 400-500 lbs. $256-317; 500-600 lbs. $228-256.

Yearling steers : 600-700 lbs. $215-257; 700-800 lbs. $208-224; 800-900 lbs. $197-213; 900-100 lbs. $187-201.

Yearling heifers: 600-700 lbs. $209-232; 700-800 lbs. $196-208; 800-900 lbs. $176-184.

Heavy Holstein steers (700 lbs. and over): 124-141.

Stock cows (B.M.): $1450-1725.

Butcher cows: $97-109.

Thin shelly cows: $75-94.

Younger heiferettes: $114-146.

Butcher bulls: $96-118.

Oregon

MADRAS

(Central Oregon Livestock Auction)

Oct. 20

Total head: 1,384.

Steers: 200-300 lbs. $350-375; 300-400 lbs. $300-350; 400-500 lbs. $275-320; 500-600 lbs. $250-275; 600-700 lbs. $235-250; 700-800 lbs. $215-235; 800-900 lbs. $205-215.

Bulls: High yield. $135; mostly $130; thinner $120.

Pairs: Full-mouth Vacc $2250-2400.

Heifers: 200-300 lbs. $300-325; 300-400 lbs. $280-300; 400-500 lbs. $260-280; 500-600 lbs. $230-260; 600-700 lbs. $215-230; 700-800 lbs. $200-215.

Heiferettes: 850-1000 lbs. $185-200.

Washington

EVERSON

(Everson Livestock Auction)

Oct. 11

Total receipts: 683.

Feeder cattle prices very strong today with a very strong demand.

Feeder steers: 300-400 lbs. $177-290; 400-500 $193 lbs. $280; 500-600 $184 lbs. $275; 600-700 $150 lbs. $220; 700-800 $120 lbs. $200; 800-900 $148 lbs. $205; 900-1000 $110 lbs. $192; 1000-1100 $79 lbs. $175; 1100-1300 $67 lbs. $129; 1300-1500-$47 lbs. $148.

Started bull calves: $50-425 head.

Feeder bulls: $52-181.

Slaughter cows: $40.69-98.50.

Slaughter heifers: 200-300 lbs. $122; 300-400 lbs. $124-290; . 400-500 lbs. $143-255; 500-600 lbs. $136-225; 600-700 lbs. $115-225; 700-800 lbs. $130-202; 800-900 lbs. $121-182; 900-1000 lbs. $95.50-160.50. 1000-1100 lbs. $141.

Pairs: $2000.

Bred Cows: $1000-1500.

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National wool and sheep summary http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/national-wool-and-sheep-summary http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/national-wool-and-sheep-summary#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 13:57:53 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029883 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.

Oct. 24

Domestic wool trading on a clean basis was at a standstill this week and there were no confirmed trades. Demand good and trade activity moderate for this time of year. 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

Oct. 24

Compared to last week: Slaughter lambs were steady to $10 higher, except at New Holland, Pa., $10-20 lower. Slaughter ewes were steady to $5 higher. Feeder lambs were uneven, mostly steady to $6 higher. At San Angelo, Texas, 5,363 head sold in a one-day sale. No sales in Equity Electronic Auction. In direct trading slaughter ewes were not tested and no comparison on feeder lambs. 10,000 head of negotiated sales of slaughter lambs were steady to $2 higher and 4,800 head of formula sales of carcasses under 55 lbs. were not well tested; 55-85 lbs. were $4-6 higher and over 85 lbs. were not well tested. 6,383 lamb carcasses sold with 55 lbs. and down $11.63-11.75 higher and 55 lbs. and up $1.56-2.80 higher.

SLAUGHTER LAMBS Choice and Prime 2-3:

San Angelo: shorn and wooled 100-140 lbs. $150-166.

SLAUGHTER LAMBS Choice and Prime 1:

San Angelo: 40-60 lbs. $230-245, few $250-260; 60-70 lbs. $210-224; 70-80 lbs. $200-217; 80-90 lbs. $184-198, few 202; 90-105 lbs. $176-190.

DIRECT TRADING (Lambs with 3-4 percent shrink or equivalent): Slaughter Lambs shorn and wooled 104-162 lbs. $154.94-174 (wtd avg $163.37); load 180 lbs. $155.

SLAUGHTER EWES:

San Angelo: Good 3-4 (very fleshy) 48-51; Good 2-3 (fleshy) $52-59; Utility and Good 1-3 (medium flesh) $55-65; Utility 1-2 (thin) $53-61; Cull and Utility 1-2 (very thin) 45-53; Cull 1 (extremely thin) $26-41.

FEEDER LAMBS Medium and Large 1-2:

San Angelo: 50-60 lbs. $216-228; 60-70 lbs. $210-218; 70-90 lbs. $202-218; 90-100 lbs. $190-200.

REPLACEMENT EWES Medium and Large 1-2:

San Angelo: no test.

NATIONAL WEEKLY LAMB CARCASS Choice and Prime 1-4:

Weight Wtd. avg.

45 lbs. down $428.16

45-55 lbs. $386.02

55-65 lbs. $348.03

65-75 lbs. $340.49

75-85 lbs. $330.21

85 lbs. and up $319.90

Sheep and lamb slaughter under federal inspection for the week to date totaled 40,000 compared with 37,000 last week and 37,000 last year.

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Chiquita OKs $681M deal with 2 Brazilian bidders http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141027/chiquita-oks-681m-deal-with-2-brazilian-bidders http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141027/chiquita-oks-681m-deal-with-2-brazilian-bidders#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 10:06:24 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029891 NEW YORK (AP) — Chiquita has sealed a deal to be acquired by two Brazilian companies for about $681 million, with the U.S.-based banana producer expected to go private by the end of this year or early next.

The deal comes just days after the fresh produce company’s shareholders rejected plans to merge with Fyffes, another major banana producer, based in Ireland.

Chiquita Brands International, based in Charlotte, North Carolina, said Monday it will be acquired by the investment firm Safra Group and the juice company Cutrale Group for $14.50 per share, a 2 percent premium to its Friday closing price of $14.16.

The companies put the transaction’s value at about $1.3 billion, including the assumption of Chiquita’s debt.

Chiquita, founded in 1870, is among the world’s top banana producers, along with Fresh del Monte, Dole and Fyffes, according to BananaLink, a nonprofit in the United Kingdom that raises awareness about working conditions in the industry. The company, which employs about 20,000 people in about 70 countries, also produces pineapples and packaged products like salad blends and sliced apples.

It said its board unanimously approved the deal.

Once the transaction is complete, Chiquita will become a subsidiary of the Cutrale-Safra Group. The Cutrale Group says it already has more than a third of the $5 billion orange juice market, and also sells oranges, apples and lemons.

On Friday Chiquita and Fyffes PLC gave notice to terminate their proposed merger agreement after Chiquita’s stockholders didn’t approve a revised transaction agreement between the two companies during a special shareholders meeting.

The proposed agreement with Fyffes was an all-stock deal, with the companies planning to incorporate in Dublin to take advantage of lower tax rates. Chiquita is based in Charlotte, North Carolina.

Once Chiquita’s shareholders rejected the proposed deal with Fyffes, Chiquita said that it planned to enter talks with Safra and Cutrale on their competing offer of $681 million. Chiquita had received the bid from the pair last week after previously rejecting offers from the duo. The prior offer from Safra and Cutrale was $14 per share. They had bid $13 per share in August.

Shares of Chiquita added 21 cents, or 1.4 percent, to $14.37 in morning trading. Its shares have risen more than 40 percent in the last three months.

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Strong winds knock out power in Pacific Northwest http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141027/strong-winds-knock-out-power-in-pacific-northwest http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141027/strong-winds-knock-out-power-in-pacific-northwest#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 09:55:11 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029892 SEATTLE (AP) — Utility crews worked Sunday to restore electricity to thousands of residents in the Pacific Northwest after a strong windstorm toppled trees, knocked out power lines and blocked roads.

Seattle City Light said Saturday night’s winds left more than 50,000 without power, but electricity was restored to a majority of customers by Sunday. Crews planned to work into Sunday evening and early Monday to make repairs to its distribution lines, the utility said Sunday afternoon.

The utility said a combination of wet soil from recent rains and high winds led branches to fall on power lines.

Meanwhile, power was restored to more than 87,000 Puget Sound Energy customers by 1 p.m. Sunday. But the utility said on its website that it was working to bring electricity back to tens of thousands more though it said some residents may not have power until Monday.

Chris Burke, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Seattle, said some areas of Seattle saw sustained winds as high as 60 mph on Saturday. Winds were also blustery along the coast, where Westport clocked winds of 50 mph and gusts of 63 mph.

Wind gusts were as strong as 49 mph at the Portland International Airport Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.

In Oregon, Portland General Electric said about 14,000 residents did not have power as of 3 p.m. Sunday. By midday Sunday, the utility had restored power to about 120,000 and repaired nearly 140 downed lines.

“This is the biggest outage we’ve had since the storm of 2008,” said PGE spokeswoman Sarah Pagliasotti. Crews are dealing with hundreds of down power lines, she said.

In southeast Douglas, a Grants Pass woman was injured Saturday when a 40-foot tall tree crashed down onto the hood of her car while she was driving on Highway 230. The driver, Kristen Daniels, lost control and hit a tree. She had injuries that were not considered life-threatening.

On Saturday, the Coast Guard helped crabbers on two recreational boats that encountered heavy winds and choppy seas on the Columbia River Bar, the Daily Astorian reported.

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Prospects dim on settlement for all wheat claims http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141027/prospects-dim-on-settlement-for-all-wheat-claims http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141027/prospects-dim-on-settlement-for-all-wheat-claims#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 09:52:47 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029893 WICHITA, Kan. (AP) — Prospects are dimming for a settlement on remaining claims in lawsuits over the May 2013 discovery of genetically engineered Monsanto wheat in an Oregon field.

A joint status report submitted Friday in U.S. District Court in Kansas said no agreement has been reached in the lawsuits filed by non-soft white wheat plaintiffs against St. Louis-based Monsanto Co. The lawsuits from across the country have been consolidated in Kansas.

Growers of soft white wheat who sued apparently have reached a tentative deal with the company.

The report said the remaining parties will continue to discuss an amicable resolution, but do not believe any agreement will be reached soon.

The parties suggested the court vacate its earlier order staying proceedings. Monsanto has filed several pending motions seeking to dismiss the cases.

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141027/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 09:42:56 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029895 Portland, Ore., Monday, Oct. 27

USDA Market News

Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon during October by unit trains and barges, in dollars per bushel, except oats, corn and barley, in dollars per cwt. Bids for soft white wheat are for delivery periods as specified. Hard red winter wheat and dark northern spring wheat bids are for full October delivery. Bids for corn are for 30 day delivery.

In early trading December wheat futures trended steady to three cents per bushel higher than Friday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat for October delivery in unit trains or barges were not fully established in early trading but bids were indicated as higher compared to Friday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. The higher Chicago December wheat futures supported cash bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading, but were indicated as steady compared to Friday’s noon bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 14 percent protein non-guaranteed US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading but were indicated as higher compared to Friday’s noon bids. The higher Minneapolis December wheat futures supported cash bids. Bids for US 2 Yellow Corn delivered to Portland and the Yakima Valley were not available.

All wheat bids in dollars per bushel

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

Oct mostly 6.8750, ranging 6.7500-7.0000

Nov 6.7500-7.0500

Dec 6.7500-7.1000

Jan 6.7800-7.2300

Feb 6.7800-6.9000

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

Oct mostly 9.1250, ranging 9.0000-9.2500

Not fully established and limited.

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

better)

Ordinary protein 7.2675-7.4175

10 pct protein 7.2675-7.4175

11 pct protein 7.3475-7.4975

11.5 pct protein

Oct 7.3875-7.5375

12 pct protein 7.3875-7.5375

13 pct protein 7.3875-7.5375

Not fully established and limited.

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 7.6000-7.8000

14 pct protein

Oct 9.1500-9.2000

15 pct protein 9.9500-10.2000

16 pct protein 10.7500-11.2000

Not fully established and limited.

US 2 Yellow Corn in dollars per CWT

Domestic-single rail cars

Delivered full coast-BN NA

Delivered to Portland NA

Rail and Truck del to Willamette Vly NA

Rail del to Yakima Valley NA

Truck del to Yakima Valley NA

US 2 Heavy White Oats in dollars per CWT 13.2500

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Sep 2014

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges 6.7500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 7.0200

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 7.1500

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 8.3400

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

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Rancher seeks to sell &#x2018;free-range&#x2019; feral pigs http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20141027/rancher-seeks-to-sell-free-range-feral-pigs http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20141027/rancher-seeks-to-sell-free-range-feral-pigs#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 09:28:30 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029896 PUNTA GORDA, Fla. (AP) — Florida’s feral pigs have long been considered a nuisance by residents and farmers, but now a rancher is hoping to make use of their abundance, marketing them as a new sustainable food source.

The Tampa Bay Times reports Sunday Charlotte County rancher Keith Mann is working with trappers, U.S. Department of Agriculture inspectors and the restaurant community to bring these “free-range” pigs to market.

He says it’s a win-win plan for homeowners and restaurants. The majority of the pigs are coming from Hillsborough and Manatee counties, but also from Sarasota, Lee and Charlotte.

Anna Maria restaurateur Ed Chiles wants to sell the meat at his three restaurants. The son of two-time Florida Gov. Lawton Chiles seeks to promote Florida cuisine and says there’s a future in the feral pork.

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SUNY Cobleskill gets new agricultural center http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141027/suny-cobleskill-gets-new-agricultural-center http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141027/suny-cobleskill-gets-new-agricultural-center#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 09:19:00 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029897 COBLESKILL, N.Y. (AP) — The State University of New York at Cobleskill has a new $45 million agricultural center.

A grand opening was held Friday at the Center for Agricultural and Natural Resources. The building opened for classes two months ago.

The 93,000-square-foot center includes a meat processing lab, taxidermy lab, fish hatcheries, four greenhouses and a conservatory. It’s the new home of the college’s animal and plant science and environmental programs.

SUNY Cobleskill plans to launch new programs in food sciences, fermentation sciences and other areas in the new agricultural center next year.

Cobleskill has more than 2,500 students, 35 percent of them enrolled in agriculture programs. The 782-acre campus houses a 200-cow dairy facility, equestrian center and student-run restaurant.

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Kubota to expand headquarters in northeast Georgia http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141027/kubota-to-expand-headquarters-in-northeast-georgia http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141027/kubota-to-expand-headquarters-in-northeast-georgia#Comments Mon, 27 Oct 2014 08:57:47 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029899 GAINESVILLE, Ga. (AP) — State officials say Kubota Manufacturing of America plans to expand its headquarters in the Gainesville area, creating an additional 650 jobs.

Kubota makes tractors, RTVs and lawn mowers.

The Georgia governor’s office announced the expansion on Monday, saying Kubota Manufacturing of America will purchase 180 acres in Hall County’s Gateway Industrial Centre, which will add to its current operations.

With the expansion, officials say the company will employ more than 2,900 Georgians in two counties.

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Minnesota couple turns farm vision into reality http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20141025/minnesota-couple-turns-farm-vision-into-reality http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20141025/minnesota-couple-turns-farm-vision-into-reality#Comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:08:12 -0400 KEVIN ALLENSPACHSt. Cloud Times http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029913 LITTLE FALLS, Minn. (AP) — There are farms all over Central Minnesota, but perhaps none operated by as unlikely farmers as a stretch of acreage east of Little Falls on Minnesota Highway 27.

This is where Jared and Lydia Strand have landed after an odyssey of more than 10 years that saw them go from metropolitan Minnesota to a West Coast education in sustainable agriculture and back here.

The Strands moved back from Oregon late last fall, with little in their bank accounts beyond what it took to finance the trip. The caravan included Jared driving one vehicle filled with chickens and pulling a trailer with their belongings. A few days later, Lydia followed a livestock hauler that had their 38 sheep and six pigs. She and her 16-year-old daughter had two dogs and six cats in their Volkswagen van.

Their destination was a farm they found on Craigslist but had never seen. They arrived in time for one of the worst winters in decades, but Lydia’s Flock, as her business is called, has thrived ever since, the St. Cloud Times reports.

“I was a wreck when we got here,” said Lydia Strand, 39, who grew up in Coon Rapids and married Jared, 44, who is from Maplewood, in 2001. “It was December 2nd, and we’d just driven most of the way through a storm with no snow tires, driving on mountain passes at 20 miles an hour and the heater not working. I got out of the van and I was bawling. We spent our entire savings to move with our animals back to Minnesota, but now I don’t regret it one bit.”

The Strands primarily raise registered Icelandic sheep. They shear them twice a year for their wool, which is processed in a mill in Fosston and returned to Lydia, who sells the skeins, pieces of loosely wound yarn, for as much as $38 each to serious knitters. Some of the sheep are culled for meat, as are some of the 42 egg-producing chickens.

They have plans to turn the farm, which they’re renting for $675 a month, into a community-supported agriculture venture. But the centerpiece, Lydia says, always will be the sheep.

———

The story starts about a decade ago when they moved to suburban Seattle looking for a “fresh start.”

Jared worked as a mechanic, and Lydia worked for a funeral home and cemetery. Their lives changed when they became part of an urban farm co-op.

“Seattle is a progressive community,” Lydia said. “It’s common to see community gardens, even in the green spaces between the boulevard and homes or buildings.”

The Strands began to soak up agricultural education like a sponge, raising chickens on a quarter-acre property in Tukwilla, Washington. After Lydia began helping at a goat and sheep rescue, she took on her own flock. It eventually got so big they had to move some from yard to yard, wherever they could find friends with some extra space.

“At that point, we decided we wanted to try farming,” Jared said. “The challenge was coming up with a place we could afford that would make it possible.”

After a fruitless search, they took jobs managing an Oregon farm. It took less than six months to realize there was a reason the dairy owner was on her third set of caretakers in as many years.

“The owner was from San Francisco and had no idea about agriculture other than she wanted to own a farm,” Jared said.

The Strands decided to get out, so a year ago they chose to return to Minnesota.

———

Allen Selinski grew up with a brother and three sisters on the farm east of Little Falls. His mother lived there until she died two years ago.

“It’s a sacred place for me,” said Selinski, who lives in Minneapolis. “The barn and sheds weren’t being used, and I wanted them to be useful to someone. So, I asked around, looking for a renter.”

Most of the farm’s 200 acres are rented to a nearby corn farmer. There are about 10 acres of pasture and grassland, though. After one false start, he put the farm on Craigslist — and got more than 250 responses from all over the nation.

“It was then I realized there’s a big demand for a hobby farm and I thought I could get someone to live there and we could work together to maintain the property,” Selinski said. “I discovered a whole world in other parts of the state and country where farmers are retiring and, instead of selling for the highest price, are renting their land to people who have a passion for agriculture.”

Despite other offers for more money, he elected to rent to the Strands, whom he only knew by phone and email. Their sincerity came through.

“I was looking for the people who were most determined, who were going to turn it into a working farm again,” Selinski said. “I couldn’t ask for better renters.

“They’re making it possible to keep the land in the family and return it to what it once was — a working farm. I just try to stay out of their way and let their passion show.”

———

It would’ve been a lot easier to move to Minnesota without all their sheep. People ask why they didn’t sell their flock and buy new animals here.

“Ours are pulled from some of the best genetic lines in North America,” said Jared Strand, who works at Brandl Motors to make it possible for him and Lydia to pursue the wool business. “We also have a personal attachment to a lot of them.”

Lydia can call them by name. She’s there when they’re born and interacts with them almost as pets. The Strands breed for temperament as well as fleece quality. The ones that don’t meet the standard are butchered on the farm.

Out of respect for the animals, and to ensure it’s done as humanely as possible, the Strands always are on hand for that. However, since the meat isn’t processed through a U.S. Department of Agriculture facility, local markets can’t sell it. It is available, along with the wool, through her website.

In the first year, they harvested 75 pounds of wool. After processing at Northern Woolen Mills, it returned about 45 pounds or 110 skeins of yarn.

“It’s obvious that she really loves her animals. You can tell by the quality of her wool. ... We get wool from all over the country, and hers is some of the best,” said Stephanie Andersen, who owns the mill — which churns out more than 70 pounds of wool per day, five days a week, all year long.

The sheep are the primary focus of the farm, but they won’t be everything.

“We’re trying to be gentle to the Earth,” Lydia said. “When animals aren’t allowed to graze or when dairy cows never see the outside of a barn, that’s not good for the animals, and it’s not good for us. There’s a reason milk is $3 a gallon. It would be $7 if the farmer is going to earn a decent wage and the animals are going to live properly.”

The Strands want to add bees in the spring to produce honey and, at least in small part, offset those being killed by corn and soybean pesticides. They want to plant an apple orchard and grow maples for syrup. They want to sell breeding stock and teach others interested in raising sheep.

Next year, they’re also going to grow a test plot of vegetables to determine how much they can produce. In 2016, they want to sell shares in their CSA. Each share, for example, would yield 20 weeks of produce, eggs and a lamb at the end of the season.

“The idea is you’d pay ahead of time and take the risk/reward with us,” Lydia said. “It wouldn’t be the answer to everything, but it would help people eat local and know where their food is coming from.”

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Chiquita holders reject plans to merge with Fyffes http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141024/chiquita-holders-reject-plans-to-merge-with-fyffes http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141024/chiquita-holders-reject-plans-to-merge-with-fyffes#Comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:50:58 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029908 CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — Chiquita shareholders have rejected plans to merge with Irish fruit importer Fyffes that would have made the world’s largest banana supplier.

Chiquita Brands International Inc. said Friday that the shareholders didn’t approve a revised transaction agreement between the two companies during a special shareholders meeting. Chiquita and Fyffes PLC have given notice to terminate their agreement.

The proposed agreement with Fyffes was an all-stock deal, with the companies planning to incorporate in Dublin to take advantage of lower tax rates. Chiquita is now based in Charlotte, North Carolina.

On Monday proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services recommended that Chiquita investors support the Fyffes deal because it is the best option for shareholders. ISS had previously said shareholders should vote against the deal because Chiquita might get a better offer elsewhere.

Chiquita President and CEO Edward Lonergan said in a statement that while the company was convinced Fyffes would have been a strong merger partner, the companies “will now go forward as competitors.”

Chiquita said it now expects to enter talks with investment firm Safra Group and juice company Cutrale Group on their competing offer of $14.50 per share in cash, or $681 million. Chiquita received the latest bid from the pair on Wednesday after previously rejecting buyout offers from the two Brazilian companies. The prior offer from Safra and Cutrale was $14 per share. They had bid $13 per share in August.

Shares of Chiquita added 49 cents, or 3.6 percent, to $14.25 in morning trading.

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141024/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20141024/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:18:49 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029911 Portland, Ore., Friday, Oct. 24

USDA Market News

Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon during October by unit trains and barges, in dollars per bushel, except oats, corn and barley, in dollars per cwt. Bids for soft white wheat are for delivery periods as specified. Hard red winter wheat and dark northern spring wheat bids are for full October delivery. Bids for corn are for 30 day delivery.

In early trading December wheat futures trended mixed, from 2.75 cents lower to 1.50 cents per bushel higher than Thursday’s closes, with the decline in Kansas City and the most advance in Minneapolis.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat for October delivery in unit trains or barges were not fully established in early trading but bids were indicated as higher compared to Thursday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. The higher Chicago December wheat futures supported cash bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading, but were indicated as lower compared to Thursday’s noon bids. Bids were pressured by the lower Kansas City December wheat futures. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 14 percent protein non-guaranteed US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for October delivery were not fully established in early trading but were indicated as higher compared to Thursday’s noon bids. The higher Minneapolis December wheat futures supported cash bids.

Bids for US 2 Yellow Corn delivered to Portland and the Yakima Valley were not available.

All wheat bids in dollars per bushel

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

Oct mostly 6.9450, ranging 6.8200-7.0700

Nov 6.7900-7.1200

Dec 6.7900-7.1700

Jan 6.8475-7.2475

Feb 6.8475-7.2475

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

Oct mostly 9.1950, ranging 9.0700-9.3200

Not fully established and limited.

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

better)

Ordinary protein 7.3550-7.5050

10 pct protein 7.3550-7.5050

11 pct protein 7.4350-7.5850

11.5 pct protein

Oct 7.4750-7.6250

12 pct protein 7.4750-7.6250

13 pct protein 7.4750-7.6250

Not fully established and limited.

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 7.6250-7.8250

14 pct protein

Oct 9.1750-9.2250

15 pct protein 9.9750-10.2250

16 pct protein 10.7750-11.2250

Not fully established and limited.

US 2 Yellow Corn in dollars per CWT

Domestic-single rail cars

Delivered full coast-BN NA

Delivered to Portland NA

Rail and Truck del to Willamette Vly NA

Rail del to Yakima Valley NA

Truck del to Yakima Valley NA

US 2 Heavy White Oats in dollars per CWT 13.2500

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Sep 2014

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges 6.7500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 7.0200

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 7.1500

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 8.3400

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, Ore.

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Lawyer urges judge to invalidate Big Isle GMO law http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141024/lawyer-urges-judge-to-invalidate-big-isle-gmo-law http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20141024/lawyer-urges-judge-to-invalidate-big-isle-gmo-law#Comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 09:11:06 -0400 JENNIFER SINCO KELLEHER http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029912 HONOLULU (AP) — A lawyer representing a group seeking to invalidate Hawaii County’s law restricting the use of genetically engineered crops urged a judge Thursday to make the same decision he recently made invalidating Kauai’s law.

U.S. Magistrate Judge Barry Kurren ruled in August that a Kauai County law requiring companies to disclose their use of pesticides and genetically modified crops is invalid because it’s pre-empted by state law.

“We believe that same ruling should follow here,” said Margery Bronster, representing Hawaii Floriculture and Nursery Association, Hawaii Papaya Industry Association, Big Island Banana Growers Association, Hawaii Cattlemen’s Council, Pacific Floral Exchange, Biotechnology Industry Organization and various farmers.

The plaintiffs want to invalidate an ordinance that went into effect in December banning new cultivation of any genetically modified crops and testing of GMO crops unless in enclosed spaces such as greenhouses. They argue the county ordinance is pre-empted by federal and state law.

The lawsuit says the ordinance affects their livelihoods — including flower growers seeking genetically-engineered variety of anthurium that would withstand plant pests and cattlemen who want to grow GMO feed to avoid having to send cattle to the mainland for fattening up before slaughter.

The Hawaii County ordinance is more onerous than the Kauai one and adds to the challenges farmers face on the Big Island including blight and viruses, pests, hurricanes and vandals, Bronster said. And lava, Kurren interjected of a Kilauea volcano flow that’s threatening rural communities in the Puna district.

The ordinance is pre-empted by state law and is in conflict with the state constitution that promotes diversified agriculture, including small farmers, flower growers, cattle and big seed companies, Bronster said.

Pre-emption was the same argument Bronster raised when arguing against Kauai’s law.

Thursday’s hearing drew far fewer spectators than the Kauai one in the same courtroom, where many people had to sit on the floor.

The ordinance allows for numerous exemptions, such as for papayas, said County Deputy Corporation Counsel Katherine Garson.

The intention of the ordinance is to “promote non-GMO agriculture, plants and crops,” she said, adding that the Big Island wanted to “promote itself as an eco-friendly place.”

Those who support that law do so in order to keep the Big Island from becoming like other counties, said Earthjustice attorney Paul Achitoff, who represents the Center for Food Safety and some organic farmers.

He argued that counties shouldn’t have to rely on the state to regulate agriculture. He likened the situation to albizia trees that were problematic when a tropical storm hit the Big Island in August.

“If the court is going to say only the state can regulate vegetation that may cause a problem, what happens to the county’s ability to say ‘we have to get rid of these albizia trees before they fall on any power lines,”’ he said.

The bill’s author, County Councilwoman Margaret Wille, said she’s hopeful Kurren will see Hawaii County’s law differently than the Kauai one: “Hopefully this magistrate has had an epiphany and is a little more foresighted.”

It’s not clear when Kurren will issue a ruling. He said his previous decision shouldn’t be seen as a “done deal” for the Big Island.

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Feds act to protect 2 butterflies; farmers wary http://www.capitalpress.com/Stocks/20141024/feds-act-to-protect-2-butterflies-farmers-wary http://www.capitalpress.com/Stocks/20141024/feds-act-to-protect-2-butterflies-farmers-wary#Comments Fri, 24 Oct 2014 08:37:55 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029916 PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — The federal government has added two Upper Midwest butterfly species to its list of threatened and endangered species, pleasing conservationists but worrying farm groups who say it could make it harder for their members to earn a living off the land.

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service on Thursday named the Dakota skipper as threatened and the Poweshiek skipperling as endangered under the Endangered Species Act. Both of the inch-long, brown-and-orange butterflies were once found in eight Midwestern and Plains states, but their populations declined due to several reasons, including the loss of native prairie vegetation and agriculture, the agency said.

“We recognize the reason we still have any Dakota skippers or Poweshiek skipperlings on the landscape at all is the conservation ethic of ranchers who have had the foresight to conserve grasslands in the Upper Midwest,” Tom Melius, Midwest regional director for Fish and Wildlife, said in a statement. “Our hope is to continue to work with landowners and partners to conserve these butterflies and the valuable habitat they depend upon.”

Tierra Curry, a senior scientist at the Center for Biological Diversity, praised the listings. In a statement, she said that “protecting the last high-quality prairie habitats for the butterflies will keep these special places safe, along with all the other plants and animals that need them to survive.”

But U.S. Rep. Kevin Cramer, R-N.D., said he wonders if the listings will even help the butterflies, and he worries the move will hurt the farming, ranching, energy and transportation industries.

“This is most alarming since no studies have been done to estimate the value the public places on preserving the two butterflies nor any examination of how their decline or extinction would affect our ecosystem,” he said.

The North Dakota Stockmen’s Association worries about harm to private property rights, Executive Vice President Julie Ellingson told The Bismarck Tribune.

“We think this will have implications for those who make their living on the land,” she said.

The South Dakota Farmers Union and Farm Bureau both will be monitoring the upcoming designation of critical habitat for the butterflies, according to the Argus Leader newspaper.

“The devil is in the details with a recovery plan and a habitat area,” Farm Bureau Executive Director Wayne Smith said.

The Dakota skipper is found in western Minnesota, northeastern South Dakota and the eastern half of North Dakota. Small numbers of Poweshiek skipperlings survive Michigan and Wisconsin. It’s been several years since the butterfly has been seen in Minnesota, Iowa and the Dakotas.

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Sweetener users study: Mexico trade case costly http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20141023/sweetener-users-study-mexico-trade-case-costly http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20141023/sweetener-users-study-mexico-trade-case-costly#Comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 09:53:06 -0400 John O’Connell http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029927 WASHINGTON, D.C. — Trade cases U.S. producers have filed against Mexican sugar imports will likely cost consumers $2.4 billion in higher prices this marketing year, according to a new white paper by the Sweetener Users Association.

The sugar growers filed their case six months ago, alleging the illegal dumping of heavily subsidized Mexican sugar depressed domestic prices. Due primarily to market uncertainty stemming from the case, U.S. refined sugar prices have risen from 26.5 cents per pound in March to 37.5 cents per pound in September, according to agricultural economist Tom Earley, a consultant who authored the paper.

Earley estimates higher prices resulting from the trade case have already cost consumers an extra $837 million during the past six months. His future price outlook assumes the continuation of current sugar prices, compared with March prices.

In response to the sugar growers’ allegations, the U.S. International Trade Commission made a preliminary ruling in May that unfair Mexican trade practices have likely hurt U.S. producers. The U.S. Department of Commerce also made a preliminary ruling that subsidies have given Mexican sugar an unfair advantage, leading to the Sept. 2 imposition of temporary tariffs averaging 15 percent on imports from Mexico. The department is scheduled to rule as to if illegal dumping occurred on Monday, which could result in additional temporary tariffs.

Tariff revenue is being held in an account pending a final Commerce ruling, scheduled for Jan. 7. That deadline, however, will likely be extended to March 8.

Phillip Hayes, a spokesman with the grower organization American Sugar Alliance, described the white paper as “elementary” and based on “cherry-picked spot prices.”

“Prices are many cents cheaper than they were in 2012. If you carry that forward, they’ve saved money,” Hayes said.

Hayes also emphasized that most of the sugar now on the market was contracted long ago at cheaper prices.

“(Their analysis) is based on the faulty assumption that if sugar prices fall, they pass along the savings to grocery shoppers,” Hayes said, pointing out that candy bar prices in 2013 were 300 percent higher than in the 1980s, though the cost of sugar was about the same.

John Herrmann, an attorney representing the sweetener users, said it’s possible the U.S. and Mexican governments will settle on the issue prior to final rulings. If that occurs, Herrmann said his client will insist that the ITC investigation continue and that terms of the agreement remain on hold pending that outcome. If ITC were to find no injury in its final ruling, any settlement would be moot. Furthermore, Herrmann said his client would advocate for a provision in an agreement guaranteeing a continued stable and dependable supply of Mexican sugar into the U.S.

Earley wrote in the white paper, “Even if the U.S. and Mexico work out some agreement to restrict Mexico’s sugar exports to the U.S. in the coming months, the implicit shorting of the market and uncertainty about how our supply deficit will be met is expected to keep U.S. sugar prices higher than they would have been otherwise.”

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Caterpillar beats Street 3Q forecasts http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141023/caterpillar-beats-street-3q-forecasts http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141023/caterpillar-beats-street-3q-forecasts#Comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 10:05:16 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029923 PEORIA, Ill. (AP) — Caterpillar Inc. (CAT) on Thursday reported third-quarter profit of $1.02 billion.

On a per-share basis, the Peoria, Illinois-based company said it had net income of $1.63. Earnings, adjusted for restructuring costs, came to $1.72 per share.

The results exceeded Wall Street expectations. The average estimate of analysts surveyed by Zacks Investment Research was for earnings of $1.33 per share.

The construction equipment company posted revenue of $13.55 billion in the period, also surpassing Street forecasts. Analysts expected $13.37 billion, according to Zacks.

Caterpillar expects full-year earnings to be $6.50 per share, with revenue expected to be $55 billion.

Caterpillar shares have risen 4 percent since the beginning of the year, while the Standard & Poor’s 500 index has increased slightly more than 4 percent. The stock has increased 6 percent in the last 12 months.

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Brazilian companies raise Chiquita offer to $681M http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141023/brazilian-companies-raise-chiquita-offer-to-681m http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20141023/brazilian-companies-raise-chiquita-offer-to-681m#Comments Thu, 23 Oct 2014 10:03:58 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014141029924 NEW YORK (AP) — Brazilian companies Cutrale and Safra said they are again raising their bid for banana producer Chiquita, to $681 million — a day before Chiquita shareholders are expected to vote on a combination with Irish fruit importer Fyffes.

Chiquita Brands International Inc. said Thursday that it will review the latest offer. It has repeatedly rejected offers from investment firm Safra Group and juice company Cutrale Group, preferring to merge with Fyffes in an all-stock deal.

ChiquitaFyffes would be the world’s largest banana supplier, and the companies plan to incorporate in Dublin to take advantage of lower tax rates. Chiquita is now based in Charlotte, North Carolina.

The latest bid from Safra and Cutrale is for $14.50 per Chiquita share, up from an offer of $14 per share earlier this month. They had bid $13 per share in August.

Chiquita shareholders are expected to vote on the Chiquita-Fyffes combination Friday.

On Monday proxy advisory firm Institutional Shareholder Services recommended that Chiquita investors support the Fyffes deal because it is the best option for shareholders. ISS had previously said shareholders should vote against the deal because Chiquita might get a better offer elsewhere.

Chiquita shares rose 97 cents, or 7.6 percent, to $13.71 in late morning trading. The stock has ranged from $9.24 to $14.43 in the past 12 months.

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