Capital Press | Nation/World http://www.capitalpress.com Capital Press Tue, 29 Jul 2014 20:06:52 -0400 en http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcsi.dll/staticimage/images/rss-logo.jpg Capital Press | Nation/World http://www.capitalpress.com Firefighters make progress against wildfires http://www.capitalpress.com/Washington/20140729/firefighters-make-progress-against-wildfires http://www.capitalpress.com/Washington/20140729/firefighters-make-progress-against-wildfires#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 17:37:57 -0400 CaSEY MINTER http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729835 Fire crews in Oregon and Washington have been battling several large fires for the past three weeks and are beginning to see results.

Seven of the 16 fires burning in the two states are now more than 80 percent contained, including the nation’s biggest wildfire, the Buzzard Complex in Oregon.

However, the danger has not yet passed, said Carol Connolly, spokeswoman for the Northwest Interagency Coordination Center.

“Two new large fires entered the system today, the Launch fire in Oregon and the Road C Fire in Washington,” Connolly said. The fires are 100 acres and 1,000 acres, respectively, and the causes of both are under investigation.

A total of 814,645 acres are burning in the two states, Oregon having the bulk of that at 526,186 acres compared to Washington’s 288,459 acres.

However, Washington fires are endangering more structures and requiring more personnel. Of the 7,435 fire personnel working in the two states, 4,523 are in Washington and 2,912 in Oregon.

The Buzzard Complex, which blackened a total of 395,747 acres 45 miles southeast of Burns, Ore., is continuing to smoke, but is 98 percent contained. After rampaging across vast amounts of rangeland and brush grass, this fire has become less of a priority, with 234 personnel working on it now. It was the second largest fire in the past decade in Oregon, compared to the Long Draw Fire in 2012 that burned 719,694 acres.

Fire personnel have broken the Carlton Complex, the largest fire in Washington’s history, into three zones. So far, the fire has destroyed 300 residences and is threatening 1,000 others. Some 83 crews totaling 3,085 people are working on containing the fire and parts of the area are still without power. Evacuations are still in place in Okanogan County, where the fire has burned 250,806 acres. Temperatures over 100 degrees, dry conditions and forecasts of lightning and thunderstorms are keeping fire personnel in the area on high alert.

“With warming and drying of last few days, there is a high potential for large fires in the region, the weather is getting the fuels just right for it,” said Connolly.

“There may be some isolated pockets of moisture, will it be enough? We don’t know,” Connolly said, “We do have initial attack resources in place, and that is our number one priority.”

The Chiwaukum Complex, Washington’s second largest fire, is threatening 1,583 residences and is only 25 percent contained. It has burned 12,337 acres and 25 crews totaling 1,231 people are working to bring it under control. National Guard troops are working alongside fire personnel to control the blaze, and hot, dry conditions are expected to allow the fire to grow in the coming days.

Lightning storms are expected to come up from the southern Oregon border and push north into Central and Eastern Oregon, threatening ignition of more small fires that could escalate with the increasingly warm, dry temperatures and gusting winds.

Compared to the rest of the country, Washington and Oregon are still the smokiest states. According to the National Interagency Fire Center, there are 28 large fires in the nation; 16 of those are in Oregon and Washington. Other states reporting large fires are California, Utah, Nevada, Idaho and Colorado.

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Potato industry battles declining demand http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20140729/potato-industry-battles-declining-demand http://www.capitalpress.com/Profit/20140729/potato-industry-battles-declining-demand#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 17:18:29 -0400 Matw Weaver http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729836 SPOKANE — The potato industry will promote unusual sizes, shapes and colors of potatoes — and their healthful benefits — as growers and marketers try to reverse a downward trend in consumer demand.

Per-capita consumption has been decreasing since the 1990s at a rate of 1 percent per year, said Jeff Bragg, vice president of Meijer North America, which operates grocery stores in the Midwest.

Bragg was one of several speakers during a utilization and marketing symposium at the Potato Association of America meeting in Spokane.

“Potatoes are suffering from the ‘three B blight’ — big, bland and boring,” said Angela Santiago, CEO and co-founder of The Little Potato Co. in Edmonton, Alberta. “You put a regular potato on a plate, and nobody’s getting too excited. We need to make potatoes interesting again, we need to get people excited.”

Consultant and University of Idaho emeritus professor Joseph Guenthner said consumption has decreased due to the perception that potatoes are unhealthful and a lack of convenience in potato products.

Bragg shared a stack of food and health magazines to demonstrate that there were very few articles talking about potatoes or potato recipes.

“Potatoes are one of the leading causes for obesity, and they are zero percent fat — that does not make a lot of sense to me,” Bragg said.

Guenthner said the industry needs to determine how to find its way into the stomachs of American consumers.

He cited recent developments, like the use of fresh-cut potatoes for fries and advertising which farm the fries came from at the Five Guys hamburger chain and Potato Flats, a restaurant in Dallas, Texas, that serves a potato bar meal atop a flattened potato.

Santiago said the consumer market has less home cooking and fewer home cooking skills, higher interest in convenience and fresh nutrition options. Consumers are also looking for smaller sizes and a small environmental footprint, she said.

Her company developed new potato products using smaller, creamer potatoes, fingerlings and blue and purple potatoes. The products include microwave-ready and grill-ready kits.

“There are thousands of potato varieties, shapes, sizes, colors and tastes that North Americans have never experienced before,” Santiago said. “Consumers want to see new and interesting products, and we’re committed to delivering.”

Santiago said the biggest difficulty has been having enough inventory to meet the high demand for her company’s offerings.

Bragg compared the many varieties of potatoes to the varieties of wine, apples and table grapes.

“They’re all being written about, described and enjoyed,” he said. “Potatoes are the health food of the present and the future, and we don’t get it out. We have a big opportunity ahead of us.”

Santiago’s company uses a three-pronged approach — exposure, excitement and education.

“We want to get in front of as many people as we can, through as many channels as we strategically can manage,” she said. “We see a future where potatoes are again full of flavor, bursting with nutrition and the centerpiece of every wholesome meal.”

Online

Potato Association of America: http://potatoassociation.org

Meijer: www.meijer.com

The Little Potato Company: www.littlepotatoes.com

Potato Flats: www.potatoflats.com

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Lawmakers urge FEMA to ease ag building rules http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20140729/lawmakers-urge-fema-to-ease-ag-building-rules http://www.capitalpress.com/Nation_World/Nation/20140729/lawmakers-urge-fema-to-ease-ag-building-rules#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 17:00:17 -0400 Tim Hearden http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729837 Capital Press

SACRAMENTO — A U.S. senator and two congressmen from California are urging the Federal Emergency Management Agency to ease requirements for farmers building or improving agricultural structures in floodplains.

Democratic Sen. Dianne Feinstein and Reps. John Garamendi, a Democrat, and Doug LaMalfa, a Republican, noted in a letter July 29 that FEMA flood insurance guidelines require producers to either elevate new structures or leave large openings to let water flow through.

In deep floodplains in places like the Sacramento Valley, such rules are unworkable because farmers would have to build 15 feet off the ground or create openings large enough to expose crops to pests and pathogens, the lawmakers wrote in the letter to FEMA director Craig Fugate.

“Given that agriculture is an effective use of deep floodplains and that agricultural structures serve very different purposes than residential structures, we hope your agency will quickly move to provide reasonable options for farmers to mitigate flood risk while building structures suitable for farming purposes,” they wrote.

The lawmakers complained that the rules under the National Flood Insurance Program are so inflexible that some California producers have been forced “to forego plans to construct important agricultural structures in floodplains currently used for producing crops or livestock.”

The letter accompanied a report from the U.S. Government Accounting Office that found California farmers adversely affected by the building requirements had to work around outdated FEMA guidelines that don’t address the challenges of operating in deep floodplains or reflect industry changes, a summary of the report explained.

When asked to comment, FEMA’s media office referred to a statement by Department of Homeland Security liaison office director Jim Crumpacker in the report itself. Crumpacker said he concurred with the GAO’s recommendation that the agency update its guidelines to reflect recent farming developments and structural needs in deep floodplains.

The agency “recognizes that agricultural land is a good use of the floodplain, and that changes in the agricultural industry and the diversity of structures that support agriculture are important to recognize in future guidance,” Crumpacker said in the statement.

He added FEMA is “working to determine the best approach” for updating the pass-through requirement, which the agency refers to as “wet floodproofing.” He said it is “to be determined” when this will be done.

The report and lawmakers’ letter comes as Garamendi and LaMalfa have proposed H.R. 3315, which would exempt structures like barns, sheds and silos from requirements they say effectively prohibit construction in areas prone to flooding.

Garamendi, whose district includes 200 miles of the Sacramento River, has called for a delay in impending flood insurance rate hikes caused by new flood risk maps produced by FEMA. The new maps increased designated flood hazard areas by nearly 80 percent in Sutter County and more than 66 percent in Yolo County, according to the GAO report.

In 2012, Garamendi proposed a bill that would have enabled farmers to obtain subsidized flood insurance on existing and new agricultural structures in areas protected by weakened levees, but that bill died in committee.

Online

Summary of GAO report on National Flood Insurance Program: www.gao.gov/products/GAO-14-583

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Portland Daily Grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140729/portland-daily-grain-report/1 http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140729/portland-daily-grain-report/1#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 13:18:07 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729842 Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon during July by unit trains and barges, in dollars per bushel, except oats and corn, 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 July delivery. Bids for corn are for 30 day delivery.

September wheat futures closed 10.75 to 14.75 cents per bushel lower than Monday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat delivered to Portland in unit trains and barges during July trended 7.75 to 14.75 cents per bushel lower compared to Monday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. Bids were pressured by the lower Chicago September wheat futures, however a higher basis bid by some exporters tempered the declines. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for July delivery trended 14 cents per bushel lower than Monday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. The lower Kansas City September wheat futures pressured cash bids. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

Bids for 14 percent protein US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for July delivery trended 10.75 to 15.75 cents per bushel lower compared to Monday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. Bids were pressured by the lower Minneapolis September wheat futures and a lower basis bid by some exporters. Some exporters are not issuing bids for nearby delivery.

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

Jul mostly 6.6950, ranging 6.2000-6.9500 dn 14.75-7.75

Aug NC 6.6500-6.9500 dn 14.75-up 0.25

Sep 6.7000-6.9800 dn 9.75-up 5.00

Oct 6.7375-7.0100 dn 4.00-up 5.00

Nov 6.7875-7.0400 dn 4.00-up 5.00

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

Jul mostly 7.3750, ranging 6.7000-7.7500 dn 14.75-4.75

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

better)

Ordinary protein mostly 7.0750, ranging 6.9450-7.1950 dn 14.00

10 pct protein mostly 7.0750, ranging 6.9450-7.1950 dn 14.00

11 pct protein 6.9650-7.2750 dn 14.00

11.5 pct protein

Jul mostly 7.1950, ranging 7.0650-7.3150 dn 14.00

Aug NC 7.0650-7.3150 dn 14.00

Sep 7.1650-7.4150 dn 14.00

Oct 7.4325-7.6325 dn 7.00-12.00

Nov 7.3825-7.6325 dn 12.00

12 pct protein 7.0650-7.3150 dn 14.00

13 pct protein mostly 7.2650, ranging 7.0650-7.4650 dn 14.00

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 7.4250-7.5750 dn 10.75-15.75

14 pct protein

Jul mostly 7.9350, ranging 7.8550-8.0550 dn 10.75-15.75

Aug NC 7.6050-8.0550 dn 10.75-up 4.25

Sep 7.4050-8.1550 dn 10.75

Oct 7.7075-8.2575 dn 10.00

Nov 7.7075-8.2575 dn 10.00

15 pct protein 8.0950-8.3750 dn 10.75-15.75

16 pct protein 8.3350-8.6950 dn 10.75-15.75

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 14.0000 unch

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Jun 2014

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges 6.9900

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 7.8500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 7.9700

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 8.3900

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

Niki Davila 503-326-2237 Portland.LPGMNams.usda.gov

24 Hour Market Report 503-326-2022

www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/jo—gr110.txt

www.ams.usda.gov/lpsmarketnewspage

11:50 P nd

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Intermountain Grain & Livestock report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140729/intermountain-grain-livestock-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140729/intermountain-grain-livestock-report#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 13:15:00 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729843 POCATELLO — White wheat 5.40 (steady); hard red winter 5.71 (down 34); 14 percent spring 6.05 (down 11); hard white 5.71 (down 34);

BURLEY — White wheat 5.50 (down 4); 11.5 percent winter 5.61 (down 14); 14 percent spring 6.30 (down 11); hard white 5.91 (down 14); barley 6.75 (steady);

OGDEN — White wheat 5.70 (down 5); 11.5 percent winter 6.00 (down 14); 14 percent spring 6.65 (down 10); barley 7.65 (steady); corn 7.88 (down 7);

PORTLAND — Soft white 6.69 (down 7); white club 7.37 (down 7); 11 percent winter 6.96-7.27 (down 14); 14 percent spring 7.93 (down 13); oats 280.00 (steady);

NAMPA— Soft white 9.87 (down 13) cwt or 5.92 (down 8) bushel. ———

LIVESTOCK AUCTION ——

Producers Livestock Auction in Vale Ore., on July 23. Butcher cows 102.00-119.00; thin-shelly cows 82.00-97.00; young pairs 1800.00-21.00; butcher bulls 99.00-142.00; feeder steers: heavy 164.00-221.00, light 218.00-255.00, stocker 229.00-267.00; feeder heifers: heavy 176.00-204.00, light 213.00-239.00, stocker 242.00-302.00 holstein steers: light 130.00-150.00, heavy 162.00-177.00; Remarks: Higher butcher cows and bull sale prices. Steady to higher on the feeder cattle.

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Camelina shows promise in Eastern Oregon http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20140729/camelina-shows-promise-in-eastern-oregon http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20140729/camelina-shows-promise-in-eastern-oregon#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 09:59:04 -0400 Sean Ellis http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729852 ONTARIO, Ore. — Camelina field trials at the Oregon State University experiment station here have shown the oil seed crop could be a source of income for the region’s farmers in drought years when irrigation water is sparse.

Camelina, which is a source of animal protein supplements, cooking oil and biofuel, can be planted in the fall or very early spring.

Camelina that was harvested at the research station in late June and early July this year yielded 1,590 pounds of seed per acre despite receiving no irrigation water.

The area only received 5.69 inches of precipitation from when the crop was planted Nov. 27 through harvest.

“It produced more than we expected given the fact we received less than 6 inches of precipitation,” said OSU researcher Clint Shock, director of the university’s Malheur County experiment station.

This year’s results were similar to those in 2013 during the trial’s first year.

Camelina wouldn’t be a high-value crop in this area but it could provide farmers some income to offset their fixed expenses during years when water is scare, Shock said.

This year’s yield average means the crop would have been worth around $300 per acre, he added. That compares to $4,800 per acre for an average onion crop.

“It’s not a high-return crop but at least something could be produced off the land with very little water,” he said.

Nyssa area farmer Paul Skeen said the camelina trial is intriguing, especially in a year like 2014 when water is tight. A lot of ground in the area was left fallow this year in anticipation of a short water season.

But farmers in this area have a lot of expenses tied up in irrigated land and in years when there is very little or no irrigation water, camelina might help them recoup some of those expenses.

“You’ve got costs in your ground whether you farm it or not,” he said. “You’re at least getting enough back to maybe pay your rent or taxes. At least you’re cutting some of your losses.”

Skeen estimates the 2014 trial crop would have covered costs.

“Instead of leaving all that ground idle, if you could plant something like that and make some money off of it, it’s still better than zero,” he said.

If growers in this area do warm to camelina, they would have a willing buyer in Willamette Biomass Processors, which is located near Salem.

Tomas Endicott, vice president of development for WBP, said his company purchases camelina from Montana and would certainly be willing to purchase it from Eastern Oregon.

WBP crushes camelina into oil and sells the high-protein meal as livestock feed to the beef and poultry industries.

Endicott said camelina needs only 3-4 inches of precipitation to make a decent crop and would top out at about 2,500 pounds per acre with 8-10 inches.

“It’s very, very drought tolerant,” he said. “The drought tolerance means it’s better suited for somewhere like Eastern Oregon.”

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East Idaho dryland wheat yields down http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20140729/east-idaho-dryland-wheat-yields-down http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20140729/east-idaho-dryland-wheat-yields-down#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 11:42:31 -0400 John O’Connell http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729844 ROCKLAND, Idaho — Southeast Idaho dryland winter wheat farmers have voiced concerns about the combination of a soft market and lower-than-normal yields early into harvest but say grain quality has exceeded expectations.

The region’s dryland winter wheat growers say their harvest has started a week to 10 days ahead of normal due to hot, dry weather. Most expect their 2014 crop will lose money.

While harvesting on July 28, Rockland Valley grower Adam Permann estimated he’s averaging 30 bushels per acre on hard red winter and 40 bushels on soft white. Though his yields have been 10-15 bushels per acre below an average year, Permann acknowledged things could have been much worse. He believes timely spring rains got the crop off to a good start, and quality has been outstanding, with test weights averaging 61-62 pounds per bushel.

Wheat growers are paid based on a 60-pound bushel, regardless of the actual volume recorded on yield monitors. Growers can also be docked pay on bushels if the test weight falls below a threshold that varies by year. The current price out of Blackfoot and Pocatello for a bushel of wheat is $5.40.

Carl Hofmeister, who also farms in Rockland Valley, said his early yields have come in at 27-32 bushels per acre on both soft white and hard red wheat — slightly below his average.

“Early when we still had pretty good moisture it looked like we were join to have a few more kernels than we ended up with. As it got hotter and drier, we dropped a few kernels in the heads, but the quality was still maintained,” Hofmeister said.

Hofmeister said his wheat plants also produced fewer shoots than normal following a cold winter with little protective snow cover.

As with most dryland farmers, an uncertain production outlook limited Hofmeister’s ability to forward contract his crop when prices were higher. He pre-sold only a quarter of his wheat.

“The price is so low now I don’t think we’ll break even this year,” Hofmeister said.

Hofmeister anticipates any revenue he’ll earn this year will come from safflower, which he’ll harvest in September, and royalties from a wind farm built on his land.

After harvesting his first truckload of hard red winter wheat, Bancroft, Idaho, farmer Terry Jorgensen said his yields, at 20 bushels per acre, were about a third of normal. The combination of heat and a recent hail storm took a toll on his wheat, though he has hail insurance.

Jorgensen has also been pleased by his grain quality.

“I haven’t seen many empty heads, and the proteins are good,” Jorgensen said. “I figured it would be really shriveled and hard to thrash, but the heads look full and it’s been easy to thrash.”

University of Idaho Extension economist Paul Patterson said wheat has experienced softening prices due to strong crops throughout the U.S. and the world and the expectation of a bumper corn crop.

Idaho Wheat Commission Executive Director Blaine Jacobsen expects further softening of wheat prices, which are already lower than they’ve been in several years, if good weather across major production areas continues.

“There is a lot of wheat out there right now,” Jacobsen said. “Nearly all of the producing areas are reporting strong acres and good weather.”

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U.S. cattle on feed continue downward spiral http://www.capitalpress.com/Livestock/20140729/us-cattle-on-feed-continue-downward-spiral http://www.capitalpress.com/Livestock/20140729/us-cattle-on-feed-continue-downward-spiral#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 11:16:37 -0400 Carol Ryan Dumas http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729848 Record-high cattle and beef prices again received validation from USDA’s latest cattle on feed report showing cattle on feed on July 1 marked the 23rd consecutive month of year-over-year declines.

Placements in June were a bit lower than the trade expected, and marketings in June were the lowest for that month since the USDA series began.

Cattle on feed in U.S. feedlots with capacity of 1,000 head or more on July 1 were down 2 percent year over year at 10.1 million head, and down 248,000 head from July 1, 2013, according to USDA National Statistics Service’s latest cattle on feed report, released July 25.

The number of cattle placed into those large feedlots in June was down 6 percent year over year at 1.46 million, a drop of 96,000 head.

The number of fed cattle marketed during June, at 1.8 million, is down 2 percent year over year, a decline of 33,000 head.

Year-over-year declines in available cattle continue to push prices higher.

Feeder cattle and calves last week sold $3 to $8 higher per hundredweight than the previous week. The direct slaughter market was a full $9 higher, and the boxed beef cut-out gained $8 to $12 per hundredweight, USDA’s Market News reported July 25.

While many in the industry cannot believe the steady run in prices and expect a pushback from consumers at any time, it hasn’t happened yet, and markets are defying the usual seasonal summer downturn.

"Despite attempts by naysayers and techno-chart readers suffering from acrophobia (fear of heights), nothing trumps good ol’ supply and demand when tracking prices for publicly traded commodities," Market News reported.

Market-ready fed cattle supplies are extremely tight, and there is simply a larger desire to own additional levels of beef cattle and products than the current availability -- at every level, the agency reported.

Fed cattle prices set a new record last week of $162.86 per hundredweight for live fed steers, up $6.81 per hundredweight from a week earlier and $42.64 per hundredweight from a year earlier, according to USDA reports.

The daily choice beef cut-out price also broke records last week rounding out at $253.77 per hundredweight, up $3.62 from the previous week and $66.37 from a year earlier.

Last week’s fed cattle and boxed beef prices were phenomenal, said Derrell Peel, livestock marketing specialist with Oklahoma State University.

Numbers in the monthly cattle on feed report were pretty well anticipated, although placements were a little lower than expected. But the report isn’t much of a market-mover, he said.

The on-feed breakdown by weights, however, is worth noting. Feedlots are placing lighter cattle, he said.

Animals over 700 pounds placed in feedlots in June were down 20 percent from a year ago, and lighter weight animals placed are up almost 20 percent. Those under 600 pounds entering feedlots in June were up 27 percent from a year ago, he said.

Those cattle under 600 pounds are going to take a full six months to get to market, further pressuring fed cattle availability, he said.

While placements were strong November through February, there’s been no surge in fed cattle coming on the market. The market seems to have spread out those earlier placements, he said.

The market was looking for a bulge in fed cattle in May or more likely in June or July, but it hasn’t been realized yet and looks like it won’t materialize, he said.

There’s been a lot of variability in placement weights through May, and placements have been down for three or four months. There’s been a lot of incentive to pull cattle forward, and it appears fed cattle are going to be tighter from here on through the end of the year, he said.

Online

http://www.nass.usda.gov/Publications/Todays_Reports/reports/cofd0714.pdf

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140729/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140729/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 10:01:11 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729851 Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon during July 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 July delivery. Bids for corn are for 30 day delivery.

In early trading September wheat futures trended 11.75 to 14 cents per bushel lower than Monday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat for July delivery in unit trains or barges were not fully established in early trading, however bids trended 7.75 to 14 cents per bushel lower compared to Monday’s noon bids. The lower Chicago September wheat futures pressured cash bids, however a higher basis bid by some exporters tempered the declines.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for July delivery were not well tested, but were indicated as 0.75 of a cent to 13.25 cents per bushel lower than Monday’s noon bids for the same delivery period, in following the lower Kansas City September wheat futures.

Bids for 14 percent protein non-guaranteed US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for July delivery were not well tested in early trading but were indicated as 11.75 to 16.75 cents per bushel lower compared to Monday’s noon bids, with pressure coming from the lower Minneapolis September spring wheat futures and a lower basis bid by some exporters.

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

Jul mostly 6.7000, ranging 6.2075-6.9500

Aug NC 6.6575-6.9500

Sep 6.7075-6.9800

Oct 6.7425-7.0100

Nov 6.7925-7.0400

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

Jul mostly 7.3800, ranging 6.7075-7.7575

Not fully established.

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

better)

Ordinary protein 6.9525-7.2025

10 pct protein 6.9525-7.2025

11 pct protein 6.9725-7.2825

11.5 pct protein

Jul 7.0725-7.3225

Aug NC 7.0725-7.3225

12 pct protein 7.0725-7.3225

13 pct protein 7.0725-7.4725

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 7.4150-7.5650

14 pct protein

Jul 7.8450-8.0450

Aug NC 7.5950-8.0450

15 pct protein 8.0850-8.3650

16 pct protein 8.3250-8.6850

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 14.0000

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Jun 2014

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges 6.9900

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 7.8500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 7.9700

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 8.3900

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

Niki Davila 503-326-2237 Portland.LPGMNams.usda.gov

24 Hour Market Report 503-326-2022

www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/jo—gr110.txt

www.ams.usda.gov/lpsmarketnewspage

8:47 P nd

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Simplot outlines Innate marketing strategy http://www.capitalpress.com/Research/20140729/simplot-outlines-innate-marketing-strategy http://www.capitalpress.com/Research/20140729/simplot-outlines-innate-marketing-strategy#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 09:38:25 -0400 Matw Weaver http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729855 SPOKANE — Simplot expects the USDA to approve its new genetically enhanced Innate potato in the next 30 to 60 days, a company official says, and the company will begin test marketing the spud this winter.

Kerwin Bradley, J.R. Simplot Co. director of commercialization, told the Potato Association of America meeting that the company has a “few hundred” acres of Innate potatoes growing across the United States and Canada. Those potatoes will go into storage and then be sold into test markets over the winter. Volumes will expand for the 2015 crop, he said.

Simplot’s Innate program uses only genes from potatoes. Genes from wild and cultivated potatoes have been used to improve the “workhorse” varieties of potatoes in the industry, including Russet Burbank, Ranger Russet, Atlantic and Snowden.

The first generation of Innate potatoes has a silenced enzyme so they do not turn brown when cut and have less black spot bruising. They also have less of the amino acid that creates acrylamide, a chemical which may be linked to cancer when cooked. The overall acrylamide reduction is 50-80 percent, he said.

Innate potatoes will be largely marketed into the fresh market for the next few years. The company will also market pre-cut Innate potatoes, which have a shelf life of up to 14 days and should garner much attention from the food service industry, Bradley said.

“For restaurants and other service operators who want the convenience, but also want a fresh potato, this solves it,” he said. “Why would you ever cut a potato in the back of a restaurant if you could have somebody cut it for you? This could be a game-changer for the industry.”

The second generation of Innate potatoes will also have late blight resistance, expanded storage and reduced sugar-related defects.

There will also be some use of Innate potatoes in processed, frozen, dehydrated and potato chip production, Bradley said.

Following approval by USDA and the Food and Drug Administration, Simplot expects approval from Japan and Canada for Innate potatoes in 2015, Bradley said. As soon as Simplot has USDA approval, it can file for approval in Mexico, and South Korea would follow, he said.

Bradley acknowledged that there’s still some discomfort in the industry for GMO potatoes following a failed attempt to introduce them 15 years ago. There are concerns about potential disruption of export trade or impacts on brands, he said.

“We have, with this all-potato gene strategy, tried to soften the introduction and risk around GMOs,” he said. “What we’ve found is that consumers differentiate these Innate potatoes from GMOs. GMO rejecters are still willing to purchase the products made from Innate potatoes.”

Consultant Joseph Guenthner, a professor emeritus at the University of Idaho, said Simplot will be closely watched by the industry, so they will be extra vigilant.

Guenthner said the Innate potato could turn around declining demand for potatoes.

“It’s going to bring to the market consumer attributes that are not there now and could not be achieved in a timely manner with conventional breeding,” Guenthner said. “In focus groups, we’ve heard consumers say they feel disgusted and cheated when they buy a bag of potatoes, peel them and see discoloration due to bruising or time after peeling.”

The Potato Association of America is a professional society whose members are involved in potato research, extension, production and use.

Online

http://www.simplotplantsciences.com

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Potato and onion report http://www.capitalpress.com/20140729/potato-and-onion-report http://www.capitalpress.com/20140729/potato-and-onion-report#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 08:46:11 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729858 Provided by: Fruit and Vegetable Market News,

Federal - State Market News Service, USDA.

Phone: (208) 525-0166 Fax: (208) 525-5546

Prices represent open (spot) market sales by first handlers on product of generally good quality and condition unless otherwise stated and may include promotional allowances or other incentives. No consideration is given to after-sale adjustments unless otherwise stated. Brokerage fees paid by the shipper are included in the price reported. Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis excludes all charges for freight.

The Following Terms when used by Market News will be interpreted as meaning:

Occasional-1 to 5%, Few-6 to 10%, Some-11 to 25%, Many-26 to 50%,

Mostly-51 to 90%, Generally-91 to 100%

Moses Lake, WA Clear 65/100

Pasco, WA Clear 63/101

Twin Falls, ID Clear 77/93

Idaho Falls, ID Partly Cloudy 49/87

Alamosa, CO Mostly Cloudy 56/77

Bakersfield, CA Clear 83/101

Fresno, CA Partly Cloudy 79/101

Las Cruces, NM Partly Cloudy 69/96

Vidalia, GA Partly Cloudy 79/98 Windy

Walla Walla, WA Clear 71/101

COLUMBIA BASIN WASHINGTON & UMATILLA BASIN OREGON

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2014 Season

---ONIONS DRY: DEMAND MODERATE.

Yellow Hybrid 50 lb sacks

jbo 9.00-10.00

med 8.00-9.00 FIRST REPORT

COLUMBIA BASIN WASHINGTON & UMATILLA BASIN OREGON

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2014 Season

---POTATOES: DEMAND MODERATE. MARKET SLIGHTLY LOWER.

Russet Norkotah U.S. One 2” or 4-oz Min

baled 5 10-lb film bags

sz A 5.50-7.00 mostly 5.50-6.50

non sz A 5.00-6.00

baled 10 5-lb film bags

sz A 6.50-8.00 mostly 6.50-7.50

non sz A 6.00-7.00

50 lb cartons

40s 10.00-11.00 few 8.00

50s 10.00-12.00 mostly 10.00-11.00 few 9.00

60s 10.00-12.00 mostly 10.00-11.00 few 9.00

70s 10.00-12.00 mostly 10.00-11.00 few 9.00

80s 10.00-11.00 few 8.00

90s 9.00-10.00 few 7.00

100s 9.00-10.00 few 7.00

U.S. Two 50 lb sacks

10 oz min 6.00-7.00 mostly 6.00-6.50

Round Red U.S. One

baled 5 10-lb film bags sz A 10.00-12.00 mostly 10.00 few 9.00

baled 10 5-lb film bags sz A 11.00-13.00 mostly 11.00 few 10.00

50 lb cartons

sz A 9.00-10.00 mostly 10.00

sz B 13.00-16.00

Creamers 3/4-1 5/8” 25.00-28.00

Yellow Type U.S. One

baled 5 10-lb film bags sz A 11.00-13.00 few lower

baled 10 5-lb film bags sz A 12.00-14.00 few lower

50 lb cartons

sz A 11.00-12.00 few lower

sz B 8.00-10.00

Creamers 3/4-1 5/8” 25.00-28.00

SAN JOAQUIN VALLEY CALIFORNIA

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2014 Season

---ONIONS DRY: DEMAND MODERATE. MARKET RED SLIGHTLY HIGHER,

YELLOW JUMBO & MEDIUM SLIGHTLY LOWER, OTHERS ABOUT STEADY.

Yellow Hybrid 50 lb sacks

Super Col 13.00-14.00

col 11.00-13.00 mostly 12.00-13.00

jbo 10.00-11.00 occas higher

med 8.00-10.00 mostly 8.00-9.00 occas lower

Red Globe Type 25 lb sacks

jbo 9.00-11.00 mostly 9.00-10.00 occas lower

med 7.00-8.00 occas higher

SAN LUIS VALLEY COLORADO

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2013 Season

---POTATOES: SUPPLY VERY LIGHT. DEMAND CARTON 40S MODERATE, OTHERS LIGHT.

MARKET CARTON 40S SLIGHTLY HIGHER, BALED & BULK LOWER, OTHERS STEADY.

Russet Norkotah/Other Varieties U.S. One

baled 5 10-lb film bags sz A 6.00-7.00 mostly 6.50

baled 10 5-lb film bags sz A 7.00-8.00 mostly 7.50

50 lb cartons

40s 9.00-11.00 mostly 9.00-10.00

50s 11.00-12.00 mostly 12.00

60s 11.00-12.00 mostly 12.00

70s 11.00-12.00 mostly 12.00

80s 10.00-11.00 mostly 11.00

90s 10.00 occas higher

100s 10.00 occas higher

U.S. Two

baled 5 10-lb film bags sz A 4.50-6.00 mostly 5.00-5.50

50 lb sacks 10 oz min 6.00-7.50 mostly 6.50

U.S. Coml bulk per cwt 8.50-10.00

SOUTHERN NEW MEXICO

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2014 Season

---ONIONS DRY: DEMAND YELLOW MEDIUM AND REPACKER SIZE MODERATE, OTHERS GOOD.

MARKET YELLOW MEDIUM AND REPACKER SIZE LOWER, OTHERS ABOUT STEADY.

Yellow Grano 50 lb sacks

Super Col 16.00 occas lower

col 15.00 occas lower

jbo 14.00 occas lower

med 10.00 few 9.00

rpkr sz 8.00-9.00 occas higher

White 50 lb sacks

jbo 12.00-14.00 mostly 14.00

med 10.00-12.00 mostly 12.00

Red Globe Type 25 lb sacks

jbo 12.00

med 10.00 few 9.00

UPPER VALLEY, TWIN FALLS-BURLEY DISTRICT IDAHO

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2013 Season

---POTATOES: DEMAND MODERATE. MARKET U.S. TWOS SLIGHTLY LOWER, OTHERS ABOUT STEADY.

Russet Burbank U.S. One 2” or 4-oz Min

baled 5 10-lb mesh sacks non sz A 40% 5-oz min 4.00-5.00

baled 5 10-lb film bags non sz A 40% 5-oz min 3.50-4.50

baled 10 5-lb mesh sacks non sz A 40% 5-oz min 5.00-6.00

baled 10 5-lb film bags non sz A 40% 5-oz min 4.25-5.50

50 lb cartons

40s 5.00-7.00 occas higher

50s 5.00-7.00 occas higher

60s 5.00-7.00 occas higher

70s 5.00-7.00 occas higher

80s 5.00-7.00 occas higher

90s 5.00-6.00 occas higher

100s 5.00-6.00 occas higher

U.S. Two 50 lb sacks

6 oz min 3.50-4.00 occas higher

10 oz min 4.25-5.00 occas higher

VIDALIA DISTRICT GEORGIA

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2014 Season

---ONIONS DRY: DEMAND FAIRLY GOOD. MARKET SLIGHTLY HIGHER.

SPECIAL STORAGE

Yellow Granex - Marked Sweet U.S. One 40 lb cartons

jbo 18.00-22.00 mostly 20.00

WALLA WALLA DISTRICT WASHINGTON

Sales F.O.B. Shipping Point and/or Delivered Sales, Shipping Point Basis

2014 Season

---ONIONS DRY: DEMAND FAIRLY LIGHT. MARKET LOWER.

Yellow Walla Walla Sweets 40 lb cartons

jbo 17.00

med 15.00

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Organic farmers honored at White House http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20140729/organic-farmers-honored-at-white-house http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20140729/organic-farmers-honored-at-white-house#Comments Tue, 29 Jul 2014 08:28:42 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729860 LAMBERTON, Minn. (AP) — A southern Minnesota farm family is being honored at the White House.

Ryan and Tiffany Batalden, of Lamberton, are among 15 special guests at the White House Tuesday who are being honored as agricultural leaders who are laying the groundwork for the next generation of farmers and ranchers.

WCCO-TV says the Bataldens are fifth-generation farmers and grow organic corn, soybeans, oilseeds and small grains on nearly 400 acres. The have a direct market popcorn business called Patriot Pops.

The event is part of the White House “Champions of Change” program for agriculture.

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Hot weather ripens fruits, vegetables early http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20140728/hot-weather-ripens-fruits-vegetables-early http://www.capitalpress.com/Oregon/20140728/hot-weather-ripens-fruits-vegetables-early#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 16:56:48 -0400 GEORGE PLAVENEO Media Group http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729863 HERMISTON, Ore. — Timing is everything for John Finley.

By staggering plantings of certain crops, Finley is able to keep a steady supply of fruits and vegetables becoming ripe throughout the growing season. That means steady business at Finley’s Fresh Produce in Hermiston.

A recent heat wave, however, has caused some plants to ripen faster than expected. This year is the earliest Finley said he’s ever had watermelons and tomatoes off the vine, while some of his lettuce has already flowered and turned bitter in the field.

Hot summers are nothing unusual in the Columbia Basin. In fact, Finley anticipates losing some lettuce and intentionally over-plants to ensure he has enough to last. But a scorching string of 100-plus degree days forced plenty of growers to harvest quickly or risk losing product before they can get it to market.

Finley, who started Finley’s Fresh Produce in 2008 with his wife, Chris, said the intense heat felt like it came a few weeks early. Temperatures finally dropped over the last week, but forecasted highs are expected to reach triple digits again by Monday.

“We’ve had hot ones like this before, there’s no question about that,” Finley said. “It’s just maybe happened a little sooner.”

In some ways, the weather has been a blessing, Finley said. It never hurts to have more selection on the shelf. The double-edged sword is whether farms can react and harvest before the produce goes bad.

Finley said they’ve been able to keep up well with the help they’ve had covering the fields.

“I think we’re going to be OK, from what I’ve been observing,” Finley said. “The weather happens, and you just deal with it as you go.”

The heat also kicked off an earlier-than-usual start harvesting Hermiston watermelons and cantaloupes at Bellinger Farms. Owner Jack Bellinger said their seasonal workers did a fantastic job being ready and working up to 13-hour days in the sweltering sun.

People become accustom to produce ripening at a certain time, Bellinger said. Crews started gathering melons around the Fourth of July, or about a week ahead of their usual schedule.

Watermelons are desert plants, and the hot days combined with cool nights are an important part of boosting sugar content in Hermiston melons — giving them their distinctive sweeter flavor. The early heat was almost too much of a good thing, Bellinger said.

“It was just getting the product out of the field before they got sunburned or overripe,” he said. “That was the real key, just getting the most out of that early crop as we could.”

While the farm did wind up losing some fruit, it wasn’t nearly as bad as it could have been, Bellinger said. Now, they are off to one of their best starts selling at the local bistro, and sending out orders to Portland and Seattle.

“You have to be nimble on your feet, get your product in and down the road as best you can,” Bellinger said. “(The workers) really proved their mettle to us this year.”

Gordon Key, with Key Family Fruit Farm of Milton-Freewater, said they too saw their peaches, plums and apricots ripen early this year. They had to rush to pick everything at once, before the fruit essentially turns to mush.

They are relieved for a break in the weather now, and have been fortunate to keep up with demand, Key said.

“You can’t hardly guess the weather anymore,” he said. “You just make sure you have lots of water.”

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Western livestock auction reports http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/western-livestock-auction-reports http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/western-livestock-auction-reports#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 14:34:33 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729865 SHASTA

(Shasta Livestock Auction)

Cottonwood, Calif.

July 25

Current week Last week

1651 653

Compared to July 18: Slaughter cows and bulls steady to $2 higher. Steers $9-15 higher. Heifers $8-20 higher. Off lots and singles $20-40 below top offerings.

Slaughter cows: Breakers $103-111, $112-126 high dress; Boning $95-102; Cutters $85-94.

Bulls 1 and 2: $110-125; $126-144 high dress.

Feeder steers: 400-450 lbs. $275-312.50; 450-500 lbs. $257-276; 550-600 lbs. $230-269.50; 600-650 lbs. $220-252.50; 650-700 lbs. $220-249; 700-750 lbs. $220-239; 750-800 lbs. $214-230; 800-900 lbs. $198-220

Feeder heifers: 300-400 lbs. $260-300; 400-450 lbs. $257- 282.50; 450-500 lbs. $220-262.50; 500-550 lbs. $220-242.50; 550-600 lbs. $227-253; 600-650 lbs. $221-240; 650-700 lbs. $210-232; 700-750 lbs. $220-235; 750-800 lbs. $207-226; 800-900 lbs. $195-201.

Calvy cows: Small pen lots mostly older to running age $,1400-1,700

Pairs: Smaller pen lots of various age $1,675-2,210

Idaho

CALDWELL

(Treasure Valley Livestock)

July 18

Steers: 200-300 lbs. $200; 300-400 lbs. $222; 400-500 lbs. $191.25; 500-600 lbs. $189; 600-700 lbs. $175.75; 700-800 lbs. $167; 800-900 lbs. $163.75; 900-1000 lbs. $142.75; 1000 lbs. and up $120.

Heifers: 200-300 lbs. $215; 300-400 lbs. $253.75; 400-500 lbs. $178.25; 500-600 lbs. $205.50; 600-700 lbs. $175.75; 700-800 lbs. $164.75; 800-900 lbs. $155.75; 900-1000 lbs. $150.50; 1000 lbs. and up $168.

Cows (wt.): 800-900 lbs. $94; 900-1000 lbs. $107.25; 1000-1100 lbs. $130.50; 1100-1200 lbs. $95.75; 1200-1300 lbs. $101; 1300-1400 lbs. $95.25; 1400-1500 lbs. $108; 1500-1600 lbs. $105.75; 1600-1700 lbs. $112; 1700-1800 lbs. $110.75; 1900-2000 lbs. $109.

Bull calves (wt.): 300-400 lbs. $304.50; 400-500 lbs. $247; 500-600 lbs. $188.25; 600-700 lbs. $155; 700-800 lbs. $162.25; 900-1000 lbs. $136; 1000-1100 lbs. $140; 1100-1200 lbs. $117; 1200-1300 lbs. $123; 1400-1500 lbs. $116.

Bulls (wt.): 1500-1600 lbs. $128; 1600-1700 lbs. $116; 1700-1800 lbs. $135.

Pairs (hd.): 1000 lbs. and up $1575.

Stock cows (hd.): 800 lbs. and up $750.

Bull calves (hd.): 100-200 lbs. $535.

Heifer calves (hd.): 100-200 lbs. $340; 200-300 lbs. $585; 300-400 lbs. $310.

Steer calves (hd.): 100-200 lbs. $350 200-300 lbs. $545; 300-400 lbs. $325; 400-500 lbs. $425.

Washington

TopPENISH

(Toppenish Livestock Auction)

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

July 25

This week Last week Last year

1,525 1,000 975

Compared to July 18 at the same market: Stocker and feeder cattle $10-15 higher, due in part to a higher futures market and a higher slaughter cattle market. Trade very active with very good demand. Slaughter cows and bulls $2-4 higher, due to to a higher slaughter cattle market. Trade active with good demand. Slaughter cows 46 percent, Slaughter bulls 15 percent, and feeders 39 percent of the supply. The feeder supply included 57 percent steers and 43 percent heifers. Near 85 percent of the run weighed over 600 lbs.

Feeder Steers: Medium and Large 1-2: 300-400 lbs. $255-285 400-500 lbs. $272; 500-600 lbs. $255; 600-700 lbs. $239-242 700-800 lbs. $218-228 700-800 lbs. $171.50-208, Full; 800-900 lbs. $210-220; 800-900 lbs. $189-206, Full; 900-1000 lbs. $181 Large 1-2: 1100-1200 lbs. $164.

Feeder Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2: 400-500 lbs. $260; 500-600 lbs. $234-

240; 500-600 lbs. $224, Full; 600-700 lbs. $230-236; 600-700 lbs. $242,

Thin Fleshed; 700-800 lbs. $207-220; 700-800 lbs. $199, Full; 800-900 lbs.

$189. Large 1-2: 900-1000 lbs. $184; 900-1000 lbs. $168, Full; 1000-1100

lbs. $130-131.50. Small and Medium 1-2: 500-600 lbs. $215

Holstein Heiferettes: Y.G. 2-3: 1200-1400 lbs. $127-130.50, low dressing $113-127.

Slaughter Cows:

Boning 80-85 percent lean 1200-2100 lbs. $108-118; Lean 85-90 percent lean 1200-1800 lbs. $105-117; Lean 90 percent lean 800-1450 lbs. $93-99

Slaughter Bulls: Yield Grade 1-2 1300-2600 lbs. $132-144.

Cow/Calf Pairs (Per Pair): Medium and Large 1-2: Young to Mid-Aged (3-8 yrs. old) 1400-1500 lbs. $2550-2800 with 300-400 lbs. calves

Oregon

VALE

(Vale Wednesday Sale)

July 23

Compared to last auction: Higher butcher cow and bull sale prices. Steady to higher on the Feeder Cattle.

Steer Calves: 300-400 lbs. $240-267 Top $300; 400-500 lbs. $229-264 Top $273; 500-600 lbs. $232-255 Top $256

Heifer Calves: 300-400 lbs. $281-302 Top $306; 400-500 lbs. $242-249 Top $251; 500-600 lbs. $217-239 Top $243.

Yearling Steers: 600-700 lbs. $218-238 Top $239; 700-800 lbs. $213-221 Top $225; 800-900 lbs. $164-178 Top $187; 900-1000 lbs. $171-188 Top $193

Yearling Heifers: 600-700 lbs. $213-221 Top $227; 700-800 lbs. $194-204 Top $206; 800-900 lbs. $176-187 Top $190.

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National slaughter, feeder and stocker cattle report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/national-slaughter-feeder-and-stocker-cattle-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/national-slaughter-feeder-and-stocker-cattle-report#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 14:03:38 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729866 NATIONAL SLAUGHTER CATTLE

(Federal-State Market News)

Oklahoma City-Des Moines

July 25

Compared to July 18: Direct live cattle trade in the South Plains $6-10 higher. Nebraska dressed sales $8-13 higher. Boxed beef prices Friday morning averaged $255.97 that is $10.42 higher than July 18. The Choice/Select spread is $2.66. Slaughter cattle on a national basis for negotiated cash trades through July 25 totaled about 42,000 head. The previous week’s total head count was 112,775 head.

Midwest Direct Markets: Live Basis: Steers and Heifers 35-80 Percent Choice, 1200-1400 lbs. $161-165; Dressed Basis: Steers and Heifers $257-262.

South Plains Direct Markets: Live Basis: Steers and Heifers 35-65 percent Choice, 1100-1400 lbs. $161-165.

Slaughter Cows and Bulls (Average Yielding Prices): Due to summer scheduling the western market will temporarily be Utah. Slaughter cows and bulls mostly steady. Packer demand remains good. USDA’s Cutter cow carcass cut-out value Friday morning was $227.90 down 93 cents from July 18.

NATIONAL FEEDER AND STOCKER CATTLE

(Federal-State Market News)

St. Joseph, Mo.

July 25

RECEIPTS: Auctions Direct Video/Internet Total

This Week 122,500 39,800 66,900 229,200

Last Week 155,500 32,300 306,100 493,900

Last Year 136,500 98,900 103,700 339,100

July 25

Compared to July 18:

Compared to last week, feeder cattle and calves sold $3-8 higher with the full advance on yearlings which were actually higher than two weeks ago and ended up gaining ground through last week’s knee-jerk correction. Calf sales were still slightly lower than the week after the 4th which led into last week’s divot in this summer’s steadily rising feeder cattle swing.

Despite attempts by naysayers and techno-chart readers suffering from acrophobia (fear of heights), nothing trumps good old supply and demand when tracking prices for publicly traded commodities. There is simply a larger desire to own additional levels of beef products than the current availability, at every level. Market ready fed cattle supplies are extremely tight and packers could no longer play coy as they were lighting up the phones of prospective sellers Wednesday night.

By Friday, the direct slaughter cattle market was a full $9 higher than the previous week with late sales from $164-166. The rallying dressed beef market allowed this advance as boxed beef cut-outs gained $8-12 this week with good demand as wholesalers allowed themselves to get short-bought. On the Northern Livestock Video from Billings, Mont., the Galt Ranch from White Sulphur Springs sold near 600 head of Waygu X steer and heifer calves to weigh 435 lbs. in late October for $402.50.

On Wednesday, Bassett, Neb., quoted 136 head of fancy 600 lbs. steers at $300 and Thursday in Mitchell, S.D., they had nearly 400 head of Large frame and thin fleshed grass yearling steers weighing 1000-1100 lbs. which averaged $206.39.

Top-selling new pickup accessories this year will include gooseneck balls, flat-beds, and bale spikes; rather than fuel tanks as crops and livestock rarely flourish at the same time.

Friday’s cattle-on-feed report was bullish and added even more fuel to the fire with July 1 inventories less than expected at 97.6 percent of last year, while placements came in well under industry expectations at 93.8 percent of 2013, and fed marketings were slightly higher than thought at 98.2 percent of the same timer a year ago. The mid-year cattle inventory report showed 95 million total cattle which was down 3 percent from two years ago (latest available comparison). There were 29.7 million beef cows (also down 3 percent) and shockingly beef replacement heifers were down 2 percent from July 2012. The 2014 calf crop was projected to be down 1 percent from last year at 33.6 million head. This week’s reported auction volume included 43 percent over 600 lbs and 40 percent heifers.

AUCTIONS

This week Last week Last year

122,500 155,500 136,500

WASHINGTON 1,900. 84 percent over 600 lbs. 37 percent heifers. Steers: Medium and Large 1-2 650-700 lbs. (664) $221.79; 750-800 lbs. (774) $214.47; 800-850 lbs. (804) $219.20; 850-900 lbs. (857) $206.88. Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2 500-550 lbs.(526) $238.60; 650-700 lbs. (658) $233.43; 700-750 lbs. (726) $215.06.

DIRECT

This week Last week Last year

86,200 52,900 152,000

SOUTHWEST (Arizona-California-Nevada) 800. 64 percent over 600 lbs. 22 percent heifers. Steers: Medium and Large 1-2 Oct 880 lbs. $202.55. Holsteins: Large 3 Jan 300 lbs. $263. Heifers: Medium and large 1-2 Sep 775 lbs. $202.55.

NORTHWEST (Washington-Oregon-Idaho) 3,900. 84 percent over 600 lbs. 29 percent heifers. Steers: Medium and Large 1-2 Current Delivery FOB Price 850-900 lbs. $200-205 WA-OR.

Future Delivery FOB Price 500-550 lbs. $250 for Nov ID; 650-700 lbs. $212-220 calves for Nov WA; 650-700 lbs. $245 value added calves for Dec ID; 800 lbs. $213 for Sep ID. Future Delivery Delivered Price 700-750 lbs. $216 for Aug-Sep WA-OR; 850-900 lbs. $206 for Aug-Sep WA-OR. Holsteins: Large 2-3 Current Delivery FOB Price 350 lbs. $202 WA. Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2 Future Delivery FOB Price 500 lbs. $242 for Nov ID; 600-650 lbs. $201-$212 calves for Nov WA; Future Delivery Delivered Price 650-700 lbs. $209 for Aug-Sep WA-OR; 700-750 lbs. $209 for Aug-Sep WA-OR; 800-850 lbs. $201 for Aug-Sep WA-OR.

NORTHWEST DIRECT CATTLE

(USDA Market News)

Moses Lake, Wash.

July 25

This week Last week Last year

3850 8500 10850

Compared to July 18: Feeder cattle $2-6 higher, due in part to lower grain markets and higher slaughter cattle markets. Trade moderate. Demand remains very good. The supply included 71 percent steers and 29 percent heifers. Near 84 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 Delivery FOB Price: 850-900 lbs. $200-205 Washington-Oregon; Future Delivery FOB Price: 500-550 lbs. $250 for November Idaho; 650-700 lbs. $212-220 calves for November Washington; 650-700 lbs. $245 value added calves for December Idaho; 800 lbs. $213 for September Idaho. Future Delivery Delivered Price: 700-750 lbs. $216 for August-September Washington-Oregon; 850-900 lbs. $206 for August-September Washington-Oregon. Holstein Steers: Large 2-3: Current Delivery FOB Price: 350 lbs. $202 for Washington. Heifers: Medium and Large 1-2: Future Delivery FOB Price: 500 lbs. $242 for November Idaho. 600-650 lbs. $201-212 calves for November Washington; Future Delivery Delivered Price: 650-700 lbs. $209 for August-September Washington-Oregon; 700-750 lbs. $209 for August-September Washington-Oregon; 800-850 lbs. $201 for August-September Washington-Oregon.

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National wool and sheep report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/national-wool-and-sheep-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/national-wool-and-sheep-report#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 13:48:59 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729867 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.

July 25

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 and 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

July 25

Compared to last week slaughter lambs were uneven, firm to $5 higher at San Angelo, Texas, and Sioux Falls, S.D., and $10-30 lower at New Holland, Pa., and Ft. Collins, Colo. Slaughter ewes were steady to $5 lower, and at New Holland $20-30 lower. Feeder lambs were steady to $10 higher. At San Angelo, 7,338 head sold in a one-day sale. In direct trading slaughter ewes not tested and feeder lambs steady. 5,800 head of negotiated sales of slaughter lambs under 170 lbs. were steady to $2 higher and 6,000 head of formula sales of carcasses under 55 lbs. were not well tested; 55-65 lbs. were $15-20 higher; 65-75 lbs. were $8-10 higher; 75-85 lbs. were steady; 85-95 lbs. were $3-4 higher and over 95 lbs. had no test. 6,154 lamb carcasses sold with 45 lbs. and down $43.19 lower; 45-55 lbs $16.25 lower; 55-65 lbs $1.75 lower and 65 lbs and up $0.39-0.65 higher.

SLAUGHTER LAMBS Choice and Prime 2-3:

San Angelo: shorn and wooled 115-140 lbs. $140-158.

SLAUGHTER LAMBS Choice and Prime 1:

San Angelo: 40-60 lbs. $170-184, few 186; 60-70 lbs. $165-176, few $180-182; 70-80 lbs. $160-170, few $172-174; 80-90 lbs. $161-170, few $174; 90-110 lbs. $160-165.

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

5,800 Slaughter Lambs shorn and wooled 85-163 lbs. $137-162 (wtd avg $152.31);

Idaho: 4,200 Feeder Lambs 120-130 lbs. $165; 130-135 lbs. $165.00

SLAUGHTER EWES:

San Angelo: Good 2-3 (fleshy) $46-55; Utility and Good 1-3 (medium flesh) $52-59; Utility 1-2 (thin) $45-54; Cull and Utility 1-2 (very thin) $35-46; Cull 1 (extremely thin) $25-35.

FEEDER LAMBS Medium and Large 1-2:

San Angelo: 50-60 lbs. $170-180; 60-70 lbs. $170-182; 70-90 lbs. $170-177; 90-105 lbs. $162-174;

REPLACEMENT EWES Medium and Large 1-2:

San Angelo: hair ewe lambs 45-50 lbs. $181-190 cwt, 60-90 lbs. $173-180 cwt.

NATIONAL WEEKLY LAMB CARCASS Choice and Prime 1-4:

Weight Wtd. avg.

45 lbs. down $410.23

45-55 lbs. $358.93

55-65 lbs. $334

65-75 lbs. $315.11

75-85 lbs. $300.60

85 lbs. and up $287.21

Sheep and lamb slaughter under federal inspection for the week to date totaled 39,000 compared with 40,000 last week and 41,000 last year.

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California egg report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/california-egg-report/1 http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/california-egg-report/1#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 13:48:52 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729868 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

July 25

Benchmark prices are steady. Asking prices for next week are 2 cents higher for Jumbo, 1 cent higher for Extra Large, 2 cents higher for Large and unchanged for Medium and Small. Trade sentiment is usually steady. Demand ranges light to fairly good, mostly moderate to fairly good. Offerings and supplies are light to moderate. Market activity is slow to moderate. Small benchmark price $1.05.

Size Range Size Range

Jumbo 180 Extra large 186

Large 174 Medium 125

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 162-174 Extra large 164-176

Large 151-163 Medium 105-113

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Court upholds FDA’s animal antiobiotic plan http://www.capitalpress.com/Livestock/20140728/court-upholds-fdas-animal-antiobiotic-plan http://www.capitalpress.com/Livestock/20140728/court-upholds-fdas-animal-antiobiotic-plan#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 13:37:37 -0400 Mateusz Perkowski http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729869 The U.S. Food and Drug Administration isn’t required to restart the process of withdrawing antibiotics from “subtherapeutic” use in animal agriculture, according to a federal appeals court.

The decision from the 2nd U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals overturns an earlier court ruling, which held that FDA was bound to proceed with the withdrawal process it had begun in the late 1970s but later discontinued.

In effect, the appellate ruling said it’s within FDA’s authority to implement a voluntary method to reduce the risk of antibiotic-resistant bacteria developing in food animals, rather than following the formal withdrawal process.

Much of the appellate court’s ruling consisted of a highly technical analysis of a federal statute that deals with animal drugs and the procedures for withdrawing them.

In a 2-1 decision, the panel of 2nd Circuit judges said the statute was “awkward” and “ambiguous” but ultimately found that “the government’s interpretation is far more plausible, both as a matter of language and as a matter of conventional legal practice.”

The majority opinion also held that FDA was not “arbitrary and capricious” in refusing to withdraw the antibiotics from subtherapeutic use.

“It is not for us to determine whether the agency has been prudent or imprudent, wise or foolish, effective or ineffective in its approach to this problem,” the ruling said.

In a dissenting opinion, Chief Judge Robert Katzmann said the FDA’s actions violate the dictates of Congress.

“Today’s decision allows the FDA to openly declare that a particular animal drug is unsafe, but then refuse to withdraw approval of that drug,” he said. “It also gives the agency discretion to effectively ignore a public petition asking it to withdraw approval from an unsafe drug.”

The majority opinion has removed roadblocks to the agency’s voluntary three-year plan for phasing out the use of antibiotics to promote growth in food animals, said Ron Phillips, vice president of legislative affairs for the Animal Health Institute, which represents veterinary drug makers.

The litigation was diverting FDA’s attention and resources while throwing into question the future of the voluntary program, under which antibiotics will be used under the supervision of a veterinarian, he said.

“We’re only going to use them to fight disease in the future,” Phillips said.

While drug manufacturers have voluntarily agreed to revise their label directions for antibiotics, those changes will nonetheless have the force of law, he said.

“Once that label is changed, that previous use is illegal,” Phillips said.

While the FDA’s voluntary program is a step in the right direction, it doesn’t go far enough, said Mae Wu, an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council, an environmental group that sued the agency.

The voluntary nature of the program means that companies can eventually change their minds and begin labeling antibiotics for growth promotion at some point in the future, Wu said.

Under the policy, manufacturers would phase out the use of antibiotics for growth promotion, but not disease prevention, said Wu.

“We don’t expect to see much reduction in antibiotic usage due to that loophole,” she said.

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Forecast: Idaho wheat production slightly lower http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20140728/forecast-idaho-wheat-production-slightly-lower http://www.capitalpress.com/Idaho/20140728/forecast-idaho-wheat-production-slightly-lower#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 11:29:25 -0400 Sean Ellis http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729872 Idaho wheat production in 2014 is forecast to be down slightly from last year but industry members expect a quality crop based on above-par growing and crop conditions.

“Idaho has had real high, consistent and excellent marks on weather and crop conditions the whole season,” said Idaho Wheat Commission Executive Director Blaine Jacobson. “We’ve had excellent growing conditions this year.”

Growers around the state said there have been a few concerns about stripe rust and heat, but nothing too severe.

“Overall, I think the crop looks pretty good right now,” said IWC member Gordon Gallup, who farms in Eastern Idaho.

Many growers were surprised with the USDA’s recent wheat production estimates, which were based on July 1 conditions and show Idaho winter wheat production being up considerably from the June forecast and spring wheat production being down 5 percent from 2013.

Growers had expected winter wheat production to be down more and were surprised that spring wheat production wasn’t down even more, said IWC member and North Idaho farmer Bill Flory.

“We were pleasantly surprised with the winter numbers,” he said.

According to USDA’s National Agricultural Statistics Service, winter wheat production in Idaho is forecast at 62.1 million bushels, up 11 percent from the June forecast and up slightly from last year’s 61.9 million total.

The NASS estimates show harvested acres at 730,000, an increase of 10,000 from 2013.

NASS forecasts Idaho’s 2014 spring wheat production at 37.5 million bushels, down 5 percent from 39.3 million in 2013. Harvested spring acres are estimated at 500,000, down 10,000 from 2013.

The earlier NASS wheat forecasts for Idaho were down significantly from the July estimates, but the recent adjustments “are more in line with what I expected them to be,” Jacobson said.

The July report forecasts Idaho wheat production will total 99.6 million bushels in 2014, down slightly from 101.2 million in 2013.

Jacobson said that based on the overall condition of the 2014 crop now, the final number could end up being even closer.

“With the good growing conditions, our yields will be up and total production wont change significantly,” he said.

Gallup, however, thinks the NASS numbers are optimistic. He expected them to be down more based on stiff competition from attractive malt barley contracts.

“I thought spring wheat would be down by about 15 percent,” he said. “I think we’re going to find out we don’t have that many acres.”

The NASS forecast of 99.6 million bushels this year would put Idaho wheat production ahead of the 2012, 2009 and 2008 totals but below 2010 and 2011.

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Portland daily grain report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/portland-daily-grain-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/portland-daily-grain-report#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 10:37:38 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729875 Bids for grains delivered to Portland, Oregon during July 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 July delivery. Bids for corn are for 30 day delivery.

In early trading September wheat futures trended 2.50 to 5.75 cents per bushel lower than Friday’s closes.

Bids for US 1 Soft White Wheat for July delivery in unit trains or barges were not fully established in early trading, however bids trended 2.50 to 4.50 cents per bushel lower compared to Friday’s noon bids. The lower Chicago September wheat futures and a lower basis bid by some exporters pressured cash bids.

Bids for 11.5 percent protein US 1 Hard Red Winter Wheat for July delivery were not well tested, but were indicated as 0.75 of a cent to 5.75 cents per bushel lower than Friday’s noon bids for the same delivery period. Bids were pressured by the lower Kansas City September wheat futures, however a higher basis bid by some exporters tempered the declines.

Bids for 14 percent protein non-guaranteed US 1 Dark Northern Spring Wheat for July delivery were not well tested in early trading but were indicated as 0.75 of a cent to 5.75 cents per bushel lower compared to Friday’s noon bids, with pressure coming from the lower Minneapolis September spring wheat futures, however a higher basis bid by some exporters tempered the declines.

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

Jul mostly 6.7750, ranging 6.3550-7.0350

Aug NC 6.8050-6.9550

Sep 6.8050-6.9300

Oct 6.7725-6.9600

Nov 6.8225-6.9900

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

Jul mostly 7.4350, ranging 6.8550-7.7350

Not fully established.

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

Ordinary protein 7.0850-7.3350

10 pct protein 7.0850-7.3350

11 pct protein 7.1050-7.4150

11.5 pct protein

Jul 7.2050-7.4550

Aug NC 7.2050-7.4550

12 pct protein 7.2050-7.4550

13 pct protein 7.2050-7.4550

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 7.5400-7.7400

14 pct protein

Jul 7.9700-8.2200

Aug NC 7.7200-8.0200

15 pct protein 8.2100-8.5400

16 pct protein 8.4500-8.8600

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 14.0000

Not well tested.

Exporter Bids Portland Rail/Barge Jun 2014

Averages in Dollars per bushel

US 1 Soft White by Unit Trains and Barges 6.9900

US 1 Hard Red Winter (Ordinary protein) 7.8500

US 1 Hard Red Winter (11.5% protein) 7.9700

US 1 Dark Northern Spring (14% protein) 8.3900

Source: USDA Market News Service, Portland, OR

Niki Davila 503-326-2237 Portland.LPGMNams.usda.gov

24 Hour Market Report 503-326-2022

www.ams.usda.gov/mnreports/jo—gr110.txt

www.ams.usda.gov/lpsmarketnewspage

8:48 P nd

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Meat supplier: China unit fell short of standards http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20140728/meat-supplier-china-unit-fell-short-of-standards http://www.capitalpress.com/AP_Nation_World/20140728/meat-supplier-china-unit-fell-short-of-standards#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 10:23:33 -0400 JOE McDONALDAP Business Writer http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729878 BEIJING (AP) — A U.S. meat supplier said Monday a Chinese subsidiary embroiled in a safety scandal fell short of its requirements for maintaining high standards.

The president of OSI Group, David G. McDonald, declined to give details of what the company has found at Shanghai Husi Food Co. A Shanghai TV station reported last week that Husi sold expired beef and chicken to restaurants including McDonald’s and KFC.

The Chinese food safety agency said last week its investigators found unspecified illegal activity and police detained five employees of Husi including its product quality manager. But the government and OSI have yet to confirm publicly whether it sold expired meat.

“Our investigation has found issues that are absolutely inconsistent with our internal requirements for the highest standards, processes and policies,” said McDonald at a news conference in Shanghai. “Why these things took place, by whom they took place and for what motives they took place, we simply can’t understand.”

McDonald said OSI, based in Aurora, Illinois, will create a “quality control center” in Shanghai and will spend 10 million yuan ($1.6 million) on a food safety education campaign. He promised “swift actions” to remedy problems once the investigation is complete.

Restaurant operators that have withdrawn products made with meat from Husi include McDonald’s Corp., KFC owner Yum Brands Inc., pizza chain Papa John’s International Inc., Starbucks Corp., Burger King Corp. and Dicos, a Taiwanese-owned sandwich shop chain. McDonald’s restaurants in Japan also stopped using meat from Husi for chicken nuggets.

Chinese investigators have yet to say how high in the company they believe knowledge or encouragement of possible misconduct may have gone.

A food safety official was quoted last week by the official Xinhua News Agency as saying unspecified illegal behavior was an “arrangement organized by the company.” Xinhua said the manager of Husi’s quality department told investigators that use of such meat went on for years with “tacit approval” from senior managers.

On Monday, the company’s owner and chairman, Sheldon Lavin, tried to distance it from individual employees who he said were to blame.

“These events simply don’t represent the values I stand for or those of my company,” said Lavin, who appeared with McDonald.

“We understand that we need to rebuild and again earn respect,” said Lavin. “We accept that there must be consequences and we take responsibility for the actions of those individuals working for our company.”

The scandal has alarmed Chinese diners and disrupted operations in China for the world’s biggest fast food brands.

Product safety is unusually sensitive in China following scandals over the past decade in which infants, hospital patients and others have been killed or sickened by phony or adulterated milk powder, drugs and other goods.

On Sunday, OSI announced it was withdrawing all products made by Husi in Shanghai. It was unclear whether any still were in use after major fast food outlets suspended use of Husi’s products following last week’s news report.

On Monday, McDonald’s outlets in Beijing had stopped selling hamburgers and chicken sandwiches. At one outlet on the Chinese capital’s east side, only fish sandwiches were available.

“We are working towards resuming the availability of your favorite products as soon as possible,” said a notice in Chinese and English on a cash register.

———

AP researcher Fu Ting in Shanghai contributed.

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New Red Lobster owners charts different course http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20140728/new-red-lobster-owners-charts-different-course http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20140728/new-red-lobster-owners-charts-different-course#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 10:21:28 -0400 CANDICE CHOIAP Food Industry Writer http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729879 NEW YORK (AP) — Red Lobster wants to be seen as a purveyor of quality seafood, so it’s getting rid of some of its promotional discounts and plating dishes higher as is the style at fancy restaurants.

The changes mark the latest attempt by the struggling seafood to stop a years-long sales decline as it embarks on a new era. On Monday, Darden Restaurants Inc. said it finalized its sale of the chain to investment firm Golden Gate Capital, despite contentious protests from activist investors. In his first interview as Red Lobster’s new CEO, Kim Lopdrup outlined the missteps he thought his predecessors made and why he thinks Red Lobster can win back customers.

“At the end of the day, people are not going to go to a Chipotle for their anniversary or their birthday,” he said.

Sit-down chains like Red Lobster have been struggling since the economic downturn as people cut back on spending. Such chains are also losing business to places like Chipotle and Panera, where people feel they can get restaurant quality food without paying as much. And Darden’s recent attempts to spark turnarounds at Red Lobster and Olive Garden haven’t worked.

Amid intensifying pressure from investors, the company announced late last year it would hold onto Olive Garden but get rid of Red Lobster. The company, based in Orlando, Florida, noted Red Lobster’s customers were increasingly from lower-income groups, compared with Olive Garden and its specialty chains such as Capital Grille. Investors Barington Capital and Starboard Value wanted the breakup structured differently, with the latter filing a lawsuit last week for records related to the sale.

In the meantime, Lopdrup said, many people still view Red Lobster as “fine-dining for the middle class.” But the push to change perceptions about the quality of Red Lobster’s food could be a challenge, given recent promotions like “30 shrimp for $11.99,” or a lobster pot pie that had just a half-ounce of lobster meat.

Lopdrup, who served as president of Red Lobster from 2004 to 2011 before moving on to head other aspects of Darden’s business, said he planned to end such steep discounting.

“You’re not going to see any of these low-priced specials that we’re not proud of,” he said. Popular promotions like “Endless Shrimp” and “Crabfest” will stay, however.

About two weeks ago, Red Lobster also starting rolling out a new plating style for its fish dishes that will expand to other parts of the menu.

Previously, fish dishes were served on rectangular plates, with the fish, rice and vegetables spread out in separate corners. Now when customers order off the “Fresh Fish” menu, they get a round plate on which slabs of fish are piled over the rice, a vertical presentation commonly found at higher-end establishments.

“The food arranged in a way that’s more like you’d see at a fine-dining restaurant,” Lopdrup said. “The seafood is the star.”

As for the food itself, that hasn’t changed.

Lopdrup also said he planned to reverse the decision in late 2012 to expand non-seafood options to up to a quarter of the menu and bring the figure back down to around 10 to 15 percent by November.

He declined to provide details on other menu changes planned for coming months. But he said the chain will take a “barbell strategy,” meaning it will continue to offer pricier items, including dishes that are more than $30, as well as affordable options more akin to the recently introduced lobster tacos.

———

Follow Candice Choi at www.twitter.com/candicechoi

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Grain storage space a problem in parts of South Dakota http://www.capitalpress.com/Stocks/20140728/grain-storage-space-a-problem-in-parts-of-south-dakota http://www.capitalpress.com/Stocks/20140728/grain-storage-space-a-problem-in-parts-of-south-dakota#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 10:01:41 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729880 ABERDEEN, S.D. (AP) — Rail congestion and large crops have some worried about grain storage space as South Dakota’s harvest gets underway.

Rail cars are in short supply in the northern Plains, and many officials and farmers blame that on increased crude oil and freight shipments from North Dakota’s booming oil patch. That means the bins at many grain elevators already are full, and there isn’t space to hold this year’s large crop.

“Typically, we wouldn’t go to ground storage until two to three weeks into harvest,” Jeremey Frost, grain merchandiser for CHS Midwest Cooperative in Pierre, told the American News. “Now, two to three days into winter wheat, we’re putting wheat on the ground.”

This year’s large crop after a good growing season isn’t helping matters, he said.

“Those who have brought in wheat are seeing yields well above averages at 50, 60, 70 or even over 80 bushels per acre,” he said. “We’ve not heard of anything less than 55. We’re used to seeing 40-bushel wheat.”

One thing in the elevators’ favor is that low market prices mean many farmers aren’t anxious to sell. Some like Slade Roseland, of Seneca, plan to store grain in large bags in the field until they’re ready to sell.

“We use the grain bags quite a bit, whenever we have storage issues,” he said. “It’s 24 miles from our farm to the elevator, so we bag crops in field and haul it in later. It’s a very efficient process.”

However, once farmers do decide to sell this year’s grain and whatever they have stored from last year, it could spell trouble.

“One of the big concerns, going into fall harvest, is all of the grain that is still on the farm,” said Tom Bright, grain marketing specialist for South Dakota Wheat Growers. “We know customers don’t like the prices, but we don’t know what (grain from last year) will be coming to us.

“There is the possibility of a double hit — the push of old crop in August and September followed by a big harvest.”

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Snack food company partners with Texas Rangers http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20140728/snack-food-company-partners-with-texas-rangers http://www.capitalpress.com/Business/20140728/snack-food-company-partners-with-texas-rangers#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 10:01:34 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729881 WAHPETON, N.D. (AP) — A North Dakota-based snack food company has inked a deal with a third Major League Baseball team.

Giants Snacks Inc. is now the official provider of sunflower seeds to the Texas Rangers. The Wahpeton company partnered with the Minnesota Twins in 2004 and with the Colorado Rockies in 2007.

“It has been great for us in regards to spreading the product and showing people what we’re all about,” Vice President of Marketing Robert Schuler told The Daily News. “It’s more for the notoriety and getting recognized more than anything. This is an opportunity that allows us a lot of growth.”

The company has been sending its seeds to the Rangers for a couple of years, and now is the official supplier for the franchise.

“It was mostly the players who made this possible,” Schuler said. “They talked with us about how much they loved our product. From there we had about a two-month process to set up the deal, talking about what they want from us and vice versa.”

Giants Snacks is eyeing California as a possible next target, Schuler said.

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California egg report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/california-egg-report http://www.capitalpress.com/Markets/20140728/california-egg-report#Comments Mon, 28 Jul 2014 09:53:22 -0400 http://www.capitalpress.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2014140729882 Benchmark prices are 2 cents higher for Jumbo, 1 cent higher for Extra Large, 2 cents higher for Large and unchanged for Medium and Small. The undertone is steady. Demand is moderate to fairly good on light to moderate offerings. Supplies are moderate. Market activity is slow to moderate.

Small benchmark price $1.05.

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.

RANGE

JUMBO 182

EXTRA LARGE 187

LARGE 176

MEDIUM 125

Source: USDA AMS Livestock, Poultry & Grain Market News

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