The price outlook to producers can be summarized as I have said before by observing "which falls faster, supply or demand".  It is clear that both are falling, nationally and domestically, and the price responses still seem to suggest demand is falling faster than supply but a slowing is beginning to take place.  There seems to be some traction developing and as everyone in this business knows, spring is the beginning of the annual reduction in supply as various biological factors begin working their way through the production complex and summer demand for certain cuts begins to increase, at least domestically.  We have experienced years when the season price pattern for spring does not develop so it is not a sure thing.

Dr. James MacDonald - The Transformation of United States Livestock Agriculture

The Transformation of United States Livestock Agriculture.

Dr. James MacDonald, Chief, Agricultural Structure and Productivity Branch, Economic Research Service, USDA.

NIAA 2009 Annual Meeting The Changing Face of Agriculture, March 31 - April 1, Louisville, Kentucky, USA.

For full screen, click on player below.

SwineCast 0405, FAPRI Report On Feedgrain Prices

SwineCast 0405 Show Notes:

  • FAPRI's Dr Patrick Westhoff goes in-depth on their recently released report on the factors behind the drop in grain prices and the outlook for this year and next

Cooperatives - A Great Career Opportunity in Agriculture

Recently, many people have been asking my advice on where the greatest opportunity for jobs in the agriculture industry is. Over the next several weeks, I will attempt to break down several areas of the industry that are working hard to recruit top talent. In this economy, you might find it hard to believe that certain sectors of the industry are in high need, but believe it or not, its true. As we face many baby-boomers coming up for retirement, almost all sectors of agriculture will experience a shortage of well qualified workers. This week we’ll take a snap shot of the Cooperative system - where job openings seem to abound these days, and we’ll examine why.

Head in the Oven, Rear End in the Freezer and Calling it a Nice Average Temperature

     The externality crowd (the politicizers, activists and interest groups who believe that agricultural producers are pushing a multitude of costs off on the globe and their community without paying for them), should take a look in the mirror.  When a small group of the population, such as those who have a true willingness to pay for things like country of origin labeling, organic food, locally produced food, carbon-neutral food, etc. gain the political clout to force the costs of these attributes on everyone (willing to pay or not), they have used the government to structuralize a huge cost externality.  Which is to say, they have forced others to pay for attributes only they demand. 

Cost of Production 2009: The End of Points and the Beginning of Distributions

     For years, modern swine producers thought about cost of production as a point or single number.  For almost a decade, a cost of production of 38 cents a pound was consider standard, high efficiency cost control.  Those days are gone and I don't mean just that number.  There is no new number which is or will be the normal cost of production for all of us who love to live by rules of thumb.  The cost of production for meat animals is largely determined by the cost of the underlying feed ingredients which have entered a phase of volatilty that is not likely to abate.  The continued mandates for ethanol production which will absorb four billion bushels of US corn production will keep key feed ingredient prices on a perpetual "stocks-to-use" razor and provide another source of price volatility here-to-fore reserved for weather events alone.  The combined impact of weather and reduced stocks-to-use values will force the volatility of the grain sector into the

SwineCast 0401, NIAA - MidAm FCS' Bill Medley Looks At Ag Lending

SwineCast 0401 Show Notes:

SwineCast 0398, Agricultural Impact of Current Economic Morass

SwineCast 0398 Show Notes:

  • Ag Economist Allen Featherstone looks at factors responsible for current economic scenario and discusses the impact he sees on agriculture at large

SwineCast 0397, Futurist Lowell Catlett shares thoughts on future consumer trends

SwineCast 0397 Show Notes:

  • University of New Mexico futurist Lowell Catlett talks with Trent Fredenburg about keeping today's economic events in perspective and future consumer trends that will change the way we do business
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