Category: United States

A zero-sum moisture game for the prairies in 2018

For many producers on the prairies, moisture concerns are top of mind, as we inch closer to the growing season. And, according to some meteorologists, prairie producers may not see respite, at least not in the near future. “I think we’re going to start out…definitely on a drier side,” says Bryce Anderson, ag meteorologist and… Read more »

The crux of populist politics for agriculture

Farmers and ranchers across Canada and the United States identify with a hard day’s work, family, and a life away from the hustle and bustle of the city. You would have to drive many dirt roads before you found a farmer in either country identifying with “the elites.” In the Right Honourable Stephen Harper’s recent… Read more »

Farmers Edge enters the world of crop insurance

Precision agriculture company Farmers Edge has plans to disrupt the crop insurance industry, announcing an agreement with global reinsurer PartnerRe on Tuesday. The four-year deal will see Farmers Edge and PartnerRe jointly develop new agriculture insurance products based on field data that Farmers Edge already collects for agronomic reasons. “For the longest time we’ve been… Read more »

Mole drainage leaves subsurface tunnels without the pipe

Mole drainage is a concept for reducing waterlogging in heavy clay soils by creating underground tunnels for water, similar to tile drainage, but without the cost of pipe. The subsurface drains are created using a single-shank plow with a cylindrical “torpedo” attached at the bottom, leaving a channel for water to flow along, generally at… Read more »

Concerns about the U.S. economy overheating and what it means for Canada

Low unemployment, major tax cuts, and looming trillion dollar deficits — the U.S. economy is hot, with growing concerns that it may be at risk of over-heating. Increasing odds of higher inflation and interest rates have stoked a pullback and volatility in the stock market after the Dow climbed to record highs in late January. The… Read more »

High supply, mixed export numbers: an analysis of the latest WASDE report

Today’s updated World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates (WASDE) report was by no means a market mover. But, it does pose some questions for the market to digest. Starting with the U.S. Supply and Demand, it was, for the most part, fully influenced by adjustments in export demand. 2017/18 U.S. corn ending stocks estimates were… Read more »

An old profession, but farmers are professionals — A Finnish farmer’s take on maintaining access to crop protection tools

Regulations, by their nature, are country or region specific, but they can have spillover effects into other markets. This is the case with many crop protection products between trading partners — a ban or restriction in one region can have trickle-down impacts on use and even access in another. Many North American farmers have been… Read more »

Cattlefax predicts strong supply and demand in 2018 as concern over drought rises

One of the highlights of the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association (NCBA) meeting every year are the Cattlefax market outlook presentations. Cattlefax certainly drove home the facts surrounding trade and how important it is for all U.S. agriculture at the cattle industry convention in Phoenix last week. Several Canadian attendees told us U.S. producers are optimistic… Read more »

Whoa, there: Speedy tractors, signage, and brake requirements

Here’s a fun debate topic: if your tractor is capable of traveling at over 40 km/h, is it still a slow moving vehicle (SMV)? It sure isn’t, and if you’re traveling above 40 km/h and displaying a SMV sign, you’re actually breaking the law. Last month at FarmSmart, RealAgriculture’s own Peter Johnson was on-hand for… Read more »

Canadian GDP shows better growth; interest rates may edge higher

Wednesday was a big day for economic news in both Canada and also for our friends south of the border, in the United States. Here at home, the market is digesting the most recent GDP data for November, while the U.S. Federal Open Market Committee made the decision to hold interest rates in the country…. Read more »

Currency Wars — where is the U.S. dollar really headed?

Last week there were reasons for confusion on what direction the American dollar might take based on White House policy. Most of the confusion last week was driven by comments made by different members of the White House team. “It’s interesting, it’s almost like currency wars at the moment,” says Matthew Pot of Grain Perspectives… Read more »

Nutrien buys Brazilian liquid fertilizer and plant health company

Nutrien Ltd. (the newly created company made up of PotashCorp and Agrium) has entered into an agreement to acquire Agrichem, a specialty plant nutrition and plant health product company in Brazil. Agrichem is one of Brazil’s largest liquid nitrogen, phosphorus, and potassium fertilizer companies, as well as a producer and marketer of plant health products, including bio-stimulants and… Read more »

Build a legacy one decision at a time

If you’re five years away from stepping back from the day-to-day operation of your farm, you’re likely to make different management decisions than say when you were five years in to your farming journey. But it’s rare for a farm to have such a distinct start and end point — most farms are a blend… Read more »

The U.S. had increased dairy market access to Canada through TPP and they gave it up

Throughout the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) negotiating rounds, groups like the United States Dairy Export Council have been lobbying for increased market access into Canada. The Americans are looking for the same kind of access that they enjoy with Mexico. This week we saw the signing of the Comprehensive and Progressive Trans-Pacific Partnership… Read more »

All eyes on Canada in round 6 of NAFTA negotiations

Round 6 of the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) talks are about to begin in Montreal, and interested parties will be gauging the mood of the discussions closely. Over the weekend, there were several articles on the grumpiness of U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer on the topic of the Canadian negotiation strategy at the… Read more »