Archive for May, 2010

On Memorial Day

ETERNAL REST GRANT THEM O LORD, AND LET PERPETUAL LIGHT SHINE UPON THEM.


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U.S. Exports Expected to Reach Second Highest Level Ever

U.S. exports for fiscal 2010 are poised to achieve a value of $104.5 billion in sales—an $8 billion increase over last year and the second highest level in history, according to Outlook for U.S. Agricultural Trade released Thursday.

The trade surplus in agriculture is now forecast to reach $28 billion, the second highest ever achieved.

The report comes on the heels of a historic six-month pace of U.S. agricultural exports, which shattered records with $59 billion in sales in the first half of the fiscal year and generated a 14 percent increase over the same period last year.

U.S. agricultural exports to China grew by nearly $3 billion during the first half of the fiscal year to $10.6 billion, making China the United States’ top market for this period.

2010 Colorado Legislative Session Comes to an End

The 2nd Legislative Session of the 67th General Assembly adjourned late Wednesday night, May 12th, finishing a few hours before the midnight deadline, but clearly not days early as they had hoped. The total number of ‘introduced’ bills this session was 649 (that does not include any Resolutions).

In the end, it is expected that probably about 300 of those measures will have become law. The Governor has 30 days to sign or veto bills, after that date any measure that remains on his desk automatically goes into law. CFB had an active position on 54 measures this year and staff tracked about another 20 bills. The Policy staff worked on a wide range of topics from the “sheep-herder taskforce” bill, to the “re-imposed taxes” measures, to the ever long living “Right to Float” bill.

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Colorado Wheat Field Days Scheduled

The 2010 Colorado Wheat Field Days will be held June 7-16th at eleven different variety trial sites throughout eastern Colorado. Jointly hosted by the Colorado Wheat Administrative Committee (CWAC), Colorado Association of Wheat Growers (CAWG), Colorado Wheat Research Foundation (CWRF) and Colorado State University (CSU) Cooperative Extension and Agricultural Experiment Station, the days will represent nearly every wheat variety planted in Colorado.

New hard red and hard white wheat varieties developed by CSU and new experimental varieties that are still in development will make their debut. Hour long plot tours will be great opportunities for producers to see the varieties that perform best in their areas.

All wheat producers are urged to attend at least one of the Colorado Wheat Field Days. For more information, a schedule and a map, visit www.coloradowheat.org or call 1-800-Wheat-10.

China Books 1 Million Tons of Corn Imports

China, the world’s second biggest corn consumer, has booked almost 1 million metric tons of corn imports from the U.S. and will probably buy more, according to the U.S. Grains Council.

The U.S. can double or triple sales to China, as the nation seeks to complement domestic supply and satisfy expanding demand, said Alvaro Cordero, manager of international operations- marketing at the Grains Council.

China purchased about 600,000 tons of U.S. corn in the past month, according to the Agriculture Department. It is securing imports and selling from state inventories to cool domestic prices that have rallied 11 percent in the past six months to near record levels. A reduced crop last year and planting delays have increased speculation of a supply shortage.

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Senate Vote on Murkowski Resolution Expected by June 10

Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) has reached an agreement with Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) for a vote on her resolution that essentially vetoes the Environmental Protection Agency’s scheme to regulate greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act.

Debate and a vote is expected by June 10, after the Senate returns from its Memorial Day recess. AFBF strongly backs the Murkowski resolution and urges state Farm Bureaus to contact their senators during the recess and ask them to vote for the resolution.

In the meantime, Sen. Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.) is saying he expects the Senate to pass the Murkowski resolution. “I think it will pass. There are a lot of people who will be in the camp of, ‘We should do it, not the EPA,’” said Graham, who is a co-sponsor of the resolution.

The resolution needs 51 votes to pass. Even if the measure passes the Senate, it faces a tougher climb in the House, and President Barack Obama is expected to veto the measure if it manages to clear both chambers.

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Judge Dismisses Nevada Wild Horse Roundup Lawsuit

A federal judge Monday dismissed a lawsuit brought by horse activists that sought to halt the roundups of wild horses in Nevada and the stockpiling of the animals in Midwestern facilities.

District Judge Paul L. Friedman in Washington, D.C. dismissed In Defense of Animals, Craig Downer, a Nevada wildlife ecologist, and Verdi children’s author Terri Farley’s lawsuit against government agencies on the basis that the parties did not have standing to take legal action in the matter of holding the horses in a long-term facility and because the roundup in the Calico area of Nevada ended in February.

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