World Perspectives
soy-oilseeds softs energy

Brainstorming without USDA

It takes something like the current partial shutdown of the U.S. government to make those involved with agricultural markets realize how much we depend on the stream of data from USDA. The regularity of things like export sales reports, livestock reports, and estimates of production, supplies and demand are taken for granted without recognizing the amount of time, effort and expertise USDA personnel put into them. As the current blackout shows, though, the information USDA provides every day tests our own thinking, defend us from our own assumptions and biases, and is a reminder that agriculture is in a constant state of flux. While trying to make do without USDA, following are some thoughts about ag markets in general and the soybean marke...

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Summary of Futures

Mar 19 Corn closed at $3.7475/bushel, up $0 from yesterday's close.  Mar 19 Wheat closed at $5.0425/bushel, down $0.0275 from yesterday's close.  Mar 19 Soybeans closed at $9.075/bushel, up $0.04 from yesterday's close.  Mar 19 Soymeal closed at $306.5/short ton, up $1 from yeste...

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Illuminating the value of technical research

On behalf of a commodity producer organization, WPI evaluated the outputs from a project that featured a $5 million investment into technical research over multiple years. WPI’s team captured the results of this extensive effort and synthesized them for presentation to the organization’s governing board; among the findings uncovered and presented for the first time was the development of genomic traits proven, via rigorous testing, to provide crop yield advantages of 50 percent or more to U.S. farmers in times of drought. Capturing measurable results from long-term efforts can be challenging. Educating clients on the dynamics of success measurement when quantifiable results are not readily available requires deep client-consultant collaboration and an ability to consider both near- and long-term client aspirations with market/policy dynamics – attributes that WPI brings to every consulting engagement.

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