Planting Progress Slows in the Midwest:
Corn growers in the South are sprinting ahead, particularly in Louisiana and Texas. On the other hand, farmers in the Midwest and Plains are progressing more slowly, due to consistent rainfall across the regions. Given that most US corn planting usually starts in early-to-mid April, there is limited risk to production potential at this point. The current forecast of above-average temperatures should also help corn emergence. Still, we recommend watching US planting progress in Gro, as NOAA’s 3-month outlook could always change in April’s forecast.
Note: represents 2016 corn planting.
Rice Season Kicks off in West Africa:
Rice growers in West Africa are under pressure to keep up with rising demand. African rice consumption grew at two and a half times the global growth rate over the past 5 years. Nowhere is this dynamic more apparent than in Nigeria—a country where imports equal nearly 40% of consumption. Early season rainfall is presenting growers in West Africa, the continent’s largest area of cultivation, with generally favorable conditions for rice development. Notwithstanding the promising start, grain handlers and policy makers should still keep a close eye on daily rainfall accumulation in Gro.
Canada Slams Door on US Dairy Industry:
An already sour relationship between the US and Canadian dairy industries is turning rancid. Global producers have repeatedly filed trade complaints against Canada since the country embraced a national policy of dairy supply management in the 1970s. Canada’s new price mechanism, known as Class 7, promises to rankle US dairy producers. Since Class 7 could encourage food processors to use more domestic dairy ingredients, US dairy producers are calling for trade action. With over $600 million in US export value at risk, we encourage dairy producers and consultants to focus on trade flow data in Gro and Canadian price quotes.