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Articles from 2016 In July


Ingredient market prices, 7/27/16

The following prices, which include delivery, were obtained July 27 from feed and grain vendors in the U.S. and Canada. The prices represent current trading values but are not guaranteed. Second column shows the amount of change since the previous week. Prices of certain products can vary depending on the processing method used. U.S. short tons, 2,000 lb. N-Nominal. N/A-Price not available.

OILSEED PRODUCTS

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Soybean meal

 

 

(high-protein)

 

 

Atlanta

413.00

-8.00

Boston

389.00

-

Buffalo

384.00

-5.00

Chicago

355.00

-7.00

Delmarva

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC

423.00

-8.00

Ft. Worth

385.00

-36.00

Kansas City

340.00

-10.00

Los Angeles

379.00

-17.00

Memphis

N/A

-

Minneapolis

325.00

-4.50

Okeechobee

413.00

-8.00

Portland

383.70

-13.65

San Francisco

379.00

-17.00

Twin Falls

392.00

-15.00

Soybean meal

 

 

(low-protein)

 

 

Atlanta

403.00

-8.00

Boston

385.00

-

Buffalo

380.00

-5.00

Chicago

343.00

-7.00

Delmarva

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC

413.00

-8.00

Ft. Worth

N/A

-

Kansas City

340.00

-10.00

Los Angeles

358.00

-16.00

Memphis

N/A

-

Minneapolis

N/A

-

Okeechobee

403.00

-8.00

Portland

N/A

-

San Francisco

358.00

-16.00

Soybean hulls

 

 

Atlanta

180.00

-

Buffalo*

135.00

-

Chicago

110.00

-10.00

Fayetteville, NC

200.00

-

Ft. Worth*

140.00

5.00

Los Angeles

147.00

-1.00

Minneapolis

90.00

-

Okeechobee

180.00

-

San Francisco

147.00

-1.00

Twin Falls

N/A

-

* unpelleted

   

Whole cottonseed

 

 

Atlanta

260.00

-

Buffalo

297.00

-8.00

Chicago

278.00

-15.00

Delmarva

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC

260.00

-

Ft. Worth

285.00

-

Los Angeles

370.00

-

Lubbock

245.00

-

Memphis

245.00

-

Okeechobee

277.00

-

Portland

362.50

-5.00

San Francisco

363.00

2.00

Twin Falls

340.00

-5.00

Cottonseed meal

 

 

Atlanta

265.00

-

Chicago

308.00

5.00

Delmarva

265.00

-

Fayetteville NC

265.00

-

Ft. Worth

290.00

-

Kansas City

320.00

-5.00

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Lubbock

260.00

-

Memphis

285.00

5.00

Okeechobee

275.00

-

San Francisco

300.00

-5.00

Cottonseed hulls

 

 

Atlanta

230.00

-

Chicago

260.00

-

Fayetteville NC

230.00

-

Ft. Worth

180.00

-

Okeechobee

267.00

-

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Lubbock

140.00

-

San Francisco

245.00

-18.00

Canola meal

 

 

Buffalo

290.00

-3.00

Minneapolis

229.80

-22.60

Los Angeles

275.00

-20.00

Montreal

283.00

-7.00

Portland

286.70

-10.65

San Francisco

275.00

-20.00

Twin Falls

266.00

-12.00

Vancouver

220.00

-50.00

Sunflower seed meal

 

 

Fargo

140.00

-

Minneapolis

145.00

-10.00

Linseed  meal

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Chicago

390.00

-

Fargo

350.00

10.00

Fayetteville NC

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

386.00

10.00

Kansas City

265.00

-5.00

Minneapolis

365.00

-

Safflower meal

 

 

Los Angeles

N/A

-

San Francisco

137.00

-2.00

ANIMAL BYPRODUCTS

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Meat and bone meal

 

 

(ruminant)

 

 

Buffalo

N/A

-

Chicago

390.00

-10.00

Delmarva

450.00

-10.00

Fayetteville NC

410.00

-20.00

Ft. Worth

370.00

-20.00

Kansas City

370.00

15.00

Los Angeles

360.00

-

Memphis

400.00

-20.00

Minneapolis

390.00

-10.00

Portland

345.00

-5.00

San Francisco

360.00

-

Meat and bone meal

 

 

(porcine)

 

 

Fayetteville NC

410.00

-50.00

Los Angeles

404.40

5.20

Memphis

400.00

-50.00

Minneapolis

400.00

-25.00

Flash-dried blood meal

 

 

(ruminant)

 

 

Fayetteville NC

825.00

-

Los Angeles

850.00

-

Memphis

800.00

-

Minneapolis

800.00

-25.00

Flash-dried blood meal

 

 

(porcine)

 

 

Fayetteville NC

875.00

-

Memphis

850.00

-

Minneapolis

825.00

-50.00

Poultry byproduct meal

 

 

(feed grade)

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC

350.00

-

Ft. Worth

345.00

-15.00

Kansas City

N/A

-

Los Angeles

489.00

84.60

Memphis

350.00

-

Poultry byproduct meal

 

 

(pet food grade)

 

 

Memphis

650.00

-

Fayetteville NC

650.00

-

Hydrolized feather meal

 

 

Atlanta

380.00

-

Delmarva

415.00

-

Fayetteville NC

380.00

-

Ft. Worth

530.00

5.00

Kansas City

560.00

10.00

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Memphis

380.00

-

Minneapolis

500.00

75.00

Menhaden fish meal

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Buffalo

N/A

-

Chicago

1480.00

-

Fayetteville NC

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

N/A

-

Kansas City

N/A

-

Memphis

1350.00

-

Minneapolis

1550.00

15.00

Twin Falls

N/A

-

Blended tuna meal

 

 

Los Angeles

N/A

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

Anchovy  meal

 

 

Los Angeles

N/A

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

ANIMAL FAT, GREASE

   

(cents per pound)

 

 

Prime Tallow

 

 

Chicago

29.00

-

Ft. Worth

N/A

-

Los Angeles

25.75

-2.25

San Francisco

26.25

-0.75

Yellow grease

 

 

Buffalo

N/A

-

Chicago

25.00

-

Delmarva

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC

24.00

-2.00

Ft. Worth

26.00

0.50

Kansas City

28.00

-

Los Angeles

24.75

-2.25

Memphis

26.00

-

Minneapolis

24.00

-0.50

San Francisco

25.25

-0.75

Choice white grease

 

 

Chicago

28.00

-

Minneapolis

27.00

-

Bleachable fancy tallow

 

 

Buffalo

N/A

-

Chicago

29.00

-

Ft. Worth

28.00

-

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Minneapolis

27.50

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

Vegetable-animal blend

 

 

Ft. Worth

27.00

1.00

Los Angeles

26.38

-

Minneapolis

24.00

-0.50

San Francisco

26.38

-

Poultry grease

 

 

(feed grade)

 

 

Delmarva

23.50

-1.00

Fayetteville NC

27.00

-

Memphis

27.00

-

Poultry grease

 

 

(pet food grade)

 

 

Memphis

34.00

-

Fayetteville NC

34.00

-

GLUTEN, HOMINY

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Corn gluten meal

 

 

Buffalo

620.00

-10.00

Chicago

575.00

-18.00

Kansas City

625.00

-

Los Angeles

640.00

-22.00

Corn gluten feed

 

 

Buffalo

166.00

-5.00

Chicago

113.00

-2.00

Fayetteville NC

130.00

-

Kansas City

155.00

-5.00

Okeechobee

150.00

-

Twin Falls

N/A

-

Wahpeton

N/A

-

Hominy feed

 

 

Atlanta

205.00

-

Boston

150.00

-

Buffalo

172.00

-4.00

Chicago

98.00

-3.00

Fayetteville NC

N/A

-

Kansas City

95.00

-

Los Angeles

160.00

4.00

Okeechobee

N/A

-

San Francisco

160.00

4.00

Twin Falls

170.00

-1.00

BREWERS, DISTILLERS

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Brewers dried grains

 

 

Chicago

N/A

-

Kansas City

N/A

-

Malt Sprouts

 

 

Chicago

120.00

-

Milwaukee

95.00

-

Winona, Minn

95.00

-

Distillers dried grains

 

 

Atlanta

187.00

-24.00

Boston

169.00

-

Buffalo

148.00

-12.00

Chicago

145.00

-

Fayetteville NC

187.00

-24.00

Kansas City

130.00

-

Los Angeles

186.00

-5.00

Minneapolis

125.00

5.00

Okeechobee

197.00

-24.00

Portland

182.50

-5.50

San Francisco

186.00

-5.00

Twin Falls

187.00

-13.00

Brewers yeast

 

 

(dollars per pound, sacked)

 

 

Chicago

0.75

-

Milwaukee

0.75

-

Minneapolis

0.75

-

ALFALFA

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Dehydrated pellets

 

 

(17% protein)

 

 

Central Nebraska

225.00

-

Buffalo

350.00

-

Chicago

340.00

-

Kansas City

250.00

-

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Minneapolis

N/A

-

Toledo

315.00

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

Suncured pellets

 

 

(15% protein)

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

145.00

-45.00

Kansas City

190.00

-

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Portland

200.00

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

WHEAT MILLFEEDS

   

Shorts

 

 

Chicago

110.00

-

Ft. Worth

N/A

-

Los Angeles

139.00

-1.00

Millrun

 

 

Los Angeles

131.00

-

Portland

130.00

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

Twin Falls

125.00

-5.00

Bran

 

 

Buffalo

134.00

5.00

Chicago

115.00

-

Los Angeles

134.00

-1.00

Minneapolis

N/A

-

Middlings

 

 

Buffalo

104.00

5.00

Chicago

95.00

-

Fayetteville NC

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

145.00

5.00

Kansas City

60.00

-

Los Angeles

137.00

-1.00

Memphis

139.00

-1.00

Minneapolis

145.00

47.00

Okeechobee

N/A

-

DAIRY BYPRODUCTS

   

(dollars per hundredweight)

 

 

Dried skim milk

 

 

Ft. Worth

90.00

3.00

Minneapolis

90.00

3.00

Dried buttermilk

 

 

Ft. Worth

80.00

-2.00

Minneapolis

80.00

-2.00

Whole whey

 

 

Chicago

26.00

-

Ft. Worth

25.50

-

Kansas City

27.75

-

Minneapolis

25.50

-

Whey protein concentrate

 

 

Ft. Worth

69.63

-

Milwaukee

69.63

-

Lactose

 

 

Ft. Worth

28.00

-

Minneapolis

28.00

-

OATS, RICE PRODUCTS

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Rolled oats

 

 

Chicago

420.00

-

Kansas City

345.00

-

Minneapolis

567.00

-

Crimped oats

 

 

Chicago

390.00

-

Kansas City

270.00

-

Minneapolis

417.00

-

Pulverized oats

 

 

Chicago

120.00

-

Minneapolis

138.00

-

Reground oat feed

 

 

Chicago

60.00

-

Kansas City

40.00

-

Minneapolis

72.00

-

Oats

 

 

(dollars per bushel)

 

 

Buffalo (per ton)

155.00

152.60

Minneapolis

2.58

-

Portland*

222.50

-

(*per ton)

   

Rice bran

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

148.00

13.00

Freeport

N/A

-

Kansas City

145.00

-

Memphis

N/A

-

San Francisco

116.00

-

Stuttgart, Ark.

N/A

-

Rice millfeeds

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

88.00

3.00

Freeport

N/A

-

Kansas City

110.00

-

Memphis

N/A

-

Stuttgart, Ark.

N/A

-

Rice hulls

 

 

Ft. Worth

60.00

-

Kansas City

70.00

-

DRIED PULP

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Citrus pulp pellets

 

 

Atlanta

185.00

-

Fayetteville NC

195.00

-

Okeechobee

165.00

5.00

Los Angeles*

N/A

-

*(sold wet)

   

Beet pulp pellets

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Boise

N/A

-

Chicago

160.00

-

Fayetteville NC

N/A

-

Kansas City

440.00

-

Minneapolis

130.00

-

Portland

165.00

-

Saginaw

150.00

-

Beet pulp shreds

 

 

Mpls (sacked)

340.00

-

Los Angeles*

125.00

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

Twin Falls

N/A

-

*bulk, wet

   

GRAINS

   

Barley feed

 

 

Kansas City (bu.)

4.20

-0.10

Los Angeles (cwt)

9.28

-0.05

Portland (ton)

170.00

-

San Francisco (cwt)

9.28

-0.05

Feed wheat

 

 

Atlanta (bu.)

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC (bu.)

N/A

-

Kansas City (bu)

4.61

-0.01

Los Angeles (cwt)

N/A

-

San Francisco (cwt)

N/A

-

Corn

 

 

(dollars per bushel)

 

 

Atlanta

5.05

-

Boston

3.55

-

Buffalo (per ton)

147.00

-1.00

Chicago

3.46

-0.02

Delmarva

3.49

-0.02

Fayetteville NC

5.05

-

Ft. Worth

N/A

-

Kansas City

3.24

-0.04

Los Angeles*

8.21

-0.16

San Fran (rail)*

8.21

-0.16

San Fran (truck)*

N/A

-

Memphis

3.57

-0.08

Minneapolis

3.77

-

Okeechobee

5.28

-

Portland (per ton)

161.25

-3.25

(*per cwt)

   

Milo

 

 

(dollars per bushel)

 

 

Atlanta

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

5.98

-

Kansas City

2.74

-0.03

Los Angeles*

8.01

-0.16

Memphis

N/A

-

*(per cwt.)

   

Ground grain screenings

 

 

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Ft.  Worth

411.00

3.00

Kansas City

50.00

-

OTHER

   

(dollars per ton)

 

 

Almond hulls

 

 

Los Angeles

94.00

-

San Francisco

50.00

-

Bakery feed

 

 

Atlanta

185.00

-

Buffalo

N/A

-

Fayetteville NC

190.00

-

Memphis

180.00

-

Minneapolis

150.00

-

Feed urea

 

 

Buffalo

N/A

-

Ft. Worth

N/A

-

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Minneapolis

N/A

-

Salt

 

 

Kansas City

58.00

-

Los Angeles

50.00

-

Cane molasses

 

 

Ft. Worth

N/A

-

Houston

140.00

-

Kansas City

175.00

-

Los Angeles

N/A

-

Memphis

N/A

-

Minneapolis

185.00

-

New Orleans

140.00

-

San Francisco

N/A

-

Top 10 reasons Almanza will be leaving legacy behind (commentary)

Al Almanza is getting close to hitting the 40 year mark with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and its Food Safety & Inspection Service (FSIS).

Will he make it?

My own personal feeling is probably not, and there are many reasons for that but first a little history needs reviewed.

Almanza joined USDA 38 years ago as a meat inspector at a very small beef slaughter facility in Dalhart, Texas, after a little more than two years of college (more on that later).

He did not stay at that level for very long as his traits of honesty, common sense and hard work ethic brought him several promotions in a very short time, ultimately rising to be the FSIS Labor Management Specialist and got him off the floors and out of the plants.

In 2004 he was promoted by a very smart FSIS Administrator by the name of Dr. Barbara Masters to become the Texas District Manager, where he had over 600 employees working in approximately 350 plants.

In July, 2005, I got my Senate approval and quickly moved to Washington, D.C., to become the Undersecretary for Food Safety at the USDA, the political appointee for oversight of FSIS and food safety issues.

One of the things I did early on was to travel to each of the then 15 District Offices to introduce myself and to get a better lay of the land as opposed to just listening to those in the DC offices who may have a bias or two about individual District and Deputy District Managers.

What stood out most impressively to me on those visits was that the Texas staff, to a person, seemed happy with their position in the District and especially happy with Almanza and his staff. 

When Masters left the USDA, I named David Goldman, M.D., and head of the Office of Public Health and Science to be the Interim Administrator for FSIS.

After discussions with some of the FSIS staffers I had come to know and trust, I made a trip to Dallas and asked Almanza if he would come to D.C. and serve as my Administrator.

His immediate reply was “yes, whatever you need from me Doc.”

In fact, it was such a quick response I suspect he had received a heads up on the why and wherefore of my trip.

So in June of 2007 I advised the Secretary of the USDA, Mike Johanns, of my plan.

I was summoned into the Office of the Chief of Staff later that day and it was suggested to me that the position of Administrator of the FSIS should at least be filled by a person with a college degree.

My response was, to paraphrase, “are we more interested in what Al did 30 years ago, or are we more interested in what he has done in the last five years as  the Deputy District Manager and later District Manager down in Texas, the best run, most efficient District we have?”

We discussed all the attributes he would bring to the table, and how his depth and breadth of experience was perfect for the position.

Not to mention that he was proficient in Spanish, and many of our international incidents involving food safety flowed up from South of the U.S.

The Secretary had worked long enough with me in Nebraska and D.C. to trust my judgment, and Almanza moved.

That was nine years ago last June, and that is about four years longer than Tom Billy served, one of the longest, if not THE longest, tenured FSIS Administrators.

Running FSIS is almost a thankless task.

Industry bucks if you take an action against a plant, the advocates bark if you don’t take strong enough actions, and there are, of course, always those employee issues one can expect when your job title lists 10,000 employees as your responsibility.

That is the first reason I suspect Almanza will move on before May 2018, which would be his 40th anniversary.

The next big kudo for Almanza came when current USDA Secretary Vilsack, on Sept. 9, 2014, named him as one of two Deputy Undersecretaries for Food Safety while keeping all his responsibilities as the Administrator.

Since there has been no Undersecretary since September 2014, Almanza has basically filled those shoes also, which means being the spokesperson to the media, consumers and industry, being the scapegoat and/or testifier at Congressional Hearings, meeting regularly with the Secretary and the other Undersecretaries and doing the international travel the Under would do if there were one.

As an example of the toll that can take on a dad with a 7 year old daughter, Almanza has been to China more than a dozen times. Dealing with chicken and catfish import issues will do that to the person holding that position.

Reasons two and three I predict he won’t make the 40-year mark.

Number two, a young daughter at home, missing her Dad.

Number three, the long distance Asian travel gets harder as one ages.

Almanza has served four secretaries, both Democrat and Republican.

Johanns, Conner, Schafer and Vilsack; Four very different men with different agendas.

Can he survive breaking in a fifth? Reason number four.

Reasons number five and six are back home in Texas; an 800 acre ranch with Angus Cross cattle roaming the hills must be calling to him very loudly (or would that be mooing to him?) and wife Wendy.

But knowing Almanza he will not leave the 10,000 employees rudderless until the new Administration is set in place, at which time he may prove me wrong.

Before I sign off, a quick look at what Almanza considers some of his most important accomplishments:

  1. Reducing the number of District Offices from 15 to 10, bringing more efficiency and less overhead.
  2. Rolling out the New Poultry Inspection System despite much adversity.  
  3. Declaring non-O157 STECs in ground beef to be adulterants.
  4. Salmonella and Campylobacter Performance Standards for the industry to meet.
  5. Labelling of tenderized beef as being just such (this is one area where Almanza and I agree to disagree).
  6. Reducing the number of face to face international audits by modernizing that part of the system and again reducing FTEs and cost of travel.
  7. Rolling out the Public Health Information System to make FSIS more proactive and efficient in data collection. (This system has been plagued with delays and cost overruns, none of which are the Administrator’s fault, plus when a crisis hits USDA, like the current forest fires, the IT system for the USDA does not have the capacity it needs to support PHIS)

Almanza and I agree that FSIS needs to modernize, and he has brought some modernization to the agency.

I have penned blogs on the need, he has testified to Congress and any group who will listen, but when you bring up electronic inspection or dual jurisdiction plants, you have stirred the hornets’ nest and you get attacked from all sides, including media, industry, advocates and the bargaining unit. Reasons number seven to 10.

You have done well my friend, best wishes to you when you move on and give young Peyton an extra hug from me tonight.

Grain results boost Bunge Q2

Bunge Ltd., a leading global agribusiness and food company based in White Plains, N.Y., reported financial results for its second quarter of 2016 ending June 30.

Bunge operates in more than 40 countries with approximately 35,000 employees. Bunge buys, sells, stores and transports oilseeds and grains; processes oilseeds to make protein meal for animal feed and edible oil products for commercial customers and consumers; produces sugar and ethanol from sugarcane; mills wheat, corn and rice into ingredients for food companies, and sells fertilizer in South America.

Bunge chief executive officer Soren Schroder said, "Second-quarter earnings were better than expected due to strong performance in grains and favorable soy processing market to market, which pulled some earnings forward. Our Agribusiness team and footprint allowed us to manage through a period of significant volatility in both prices and margins. In Food & Ingredients, milling results were higher in all regions, reflecting better market conditions in Brazil and operational and commercial improvements. Edible Oils grew volumes, but margins continued to be under pressure in Brazil and parts of Eastern Europe. Sugar & Bioenergy results came in as expected, with an outlook for a strong second half of the year."

While the company still expects earnings growth in 2016, he explained that second-half earnings will be weighted to the fourth quarter to coincide with harvests in the Northern Hemisphere.

Schroder pointed to two recent joint ventures Bunge has formed to pursue growth — one in Vietnam with Wilmar and Green Feed that will "increase our operating, marketing and logistics synergies in one of Asia's fastest-growing protein and edible oil markets" — and the other in northern Brazil with AMAGGI, a leading farm and agribusiness company in Brazil.

Results by segment

The following are second-quarter results by segment:

Agribusiness. Higher results in the quarter were primarily due to improved performances in grains, which benefitted from strong growth in destination volumes and solid risk management, as well as to increased margins and volumes in the company's South American ports and services operations.

Grain origination in Brazil was an important contributor in the quarter; however, results were lower than last year due to slower farmer selling from the combination of market volatility and smaller-than-expected crops. Origination margins in both Argentina and the U.S. remained soft.

Oilseeds. Strong meal and oil demand supported soy crush margins in Brazil and the U.S. but were offset by lower results in Argentina crushing and weaker results in oilseed trading and merchandising.

Canadian and European softseed results remained weak, but the outlook for new crop margins improved. Second-quarter results included approximately $40 million of market-to-market hedging gains related to oilseed processing that are expected to largely reverse in the third quarter when the contracts are executed.

Results included a $12 million pretax impairment charge related to the remaining unamortized carrying value of certain patents.

Edible Oil Products. Results included the reversal of an approximately $12 million market-to-market gain that benefitted the first quarter. Higher earnings in the second quarter reflected improved performances in Asia, Canada and Europe. Margins were higher in both India and China, and results in Canada benefitted from strong volume growth in both foodservice and food processor markets. While results were higher in Europe, the combination of depressed economies and soft consumer demand in parts of Eastern Europe continued to weigh on performance.

Volumes in Brazil were strong and have returned to pre-economic crisis levels, but margins remained weak, with excess supply of domestic soybean oil from the peak crushing period pressuring retail margins.

Results in the U.S. were down from last year as an improvement in packaging was more than offset by weaker refining margins.

Milling Products. Results were higher in all regions compared with last year. In Brazil, volumes benefitted from the contribution of Bunge's Pacifico mill and market share gains. Higher margins were driven by favorable raw material sourcing strategies and improved product mix. In Mexico, higher margins were due to an improved sales mix and ongoing improvement initiatives. U.S. corn milling saw higher volumes and reduced industrial costs driven by cost initiatives, which more than offset lower margins. Results in rice milling were similar to the prior year.

Sugar & Bioenergy. Results were higher than last year and in line with expectations, driven by the sugarcane milling operation that benefitted from higher sugar and ethanol prices. Crushing volumes were down from last year due to wet weather, but this was offset, in part, by slightly improved ATR. The second quarter is the seasonal low point for ATR yields, when mills produce less sugar and ethanol per unit of sugarcane milled than they will in the second half of the year.

Trading and distribution performance was comparable with last year, and results in the biofuel joint ventures were down primarily due to higher raw material costs in Argentina. Results were affected by a $6 million loss from the renewable oil joint venture.

Fertilizer. Higher results in the quarter were driven by improved performance in the company's port operation in Brazil, which benefitted from higher import volumes. In the Argentina fertilizer business, which is still in the slow season, lower margins more than offset higher volumes.

Outlook

Looking ahead, Bunge chief financial officer Drew Burke said, "Overall, we continue to expect to grow earnings in 2016. In Agribusiness, forward oilseed processing and grain handling margins in North America and the Black Sea are solid, reflecting big harvests and strong demand."

Even though the U.S. Department of Agriculture forecasting global demand for soybean meal and oil to grow about 7% each this year, he said "in the near term, slow farmer selling in Brazil and Argentina, due to smaller-than-expected crops and lower prices," is negatively affecting margins, while the market-to-market gains that benefitted the second quarter are expected to mostly reverse in the third quarter.

The Food & Ingredients 2016 segment earnings before interest and taxes (EBIT) are expected to be $10-30 million higher than last year's adjusted result of $192 million, primarily due to operational and commercial excellence initiatives and recent acquisitions. Burke explained that the lowered range of the previous outlook reflects "the continued challenging conditions in certain Edible Oils markets. Milling is on track and should continue to benefit from a very competitive footprint."

Bunge made no change to the Fertilizer outlook and expects the segment's 2016 EBIT to be roughly $30 million higher than last year's $5 million, driven by improved farmer economics in Argentina that should lead to increased crop input purchases.

"In Sugar & Bioenergy, we are entering the seasonally strong period of the year when ATR yields rapidly increase," Burke said. "Our sugarcane milling operations are trending well, and the segment remains on target to grow segment EBIT by $70-80 million, assuming normal weather patterns, compared to last year's adjusted loss of $22 million."

OIE conference addresses vet education

After three days of fruitful discussions, 350 participants from more than 90 countries attending the fourth World Organization for Animal Health (OIE) Global Conference on Veterinary Education endorsed a range of recommendations aimed at furthering the improvement in veterinary education worldwide.

The conference addressed ways to ensure the excellence of the veterinary profession globally by encouraging worldwide harmonization of veterinary education. Indeed, strengthening veterinary education constitutes the foundations of the sustainable improvement in veterinary services, the quality of which is crucial to respond to the societal, economic and environmental changes faced by the profession and the society.

Addressing the health challenges of today and tomorrow is extremely important for mitigating not only the threats linked to the emergence of new animal diseases or re-emergence of those in existence but also their consequent various social and economic impacts.

This issue needs to be addressed in a context in which climate, production systems and population demographics constantly evolve, as well as societal demands in the fields of food security, food safety, veterinary public health and animal welfare. In this regard, society expects the veterinary profession to be able to respond to a wide range of concerns, OIE said.

The quality of veterinary services depends on multiple factors, where appropriate qualifications, scientific expertise and experience are key prerequisites for a sound veterinary profession represented by the public- and private-sector components of national veterinary services, OIE explained. These are essential to maintaining national animal health systems that are capable of providing surveillance, early detection and reporting, as well as rapid response to any natural, accidental or intentional animal disease outbreak.

Building on past achievements

Previous OIE global conferences on veterinary education addressed the need for better quality and harmonization of veterinary education worldwide and led to the development of a core curriculum to address day 1 competencies expected of all graduate veterinarians in all countries. Furthermore, they emphasized the essential role of veterinary statutory bodies in supporting better veterinary education and in regulating veterinarians and veterinary para-professionals, OIE said.

Additionally, the conferences have encouraged OIE to develop the concept of twinning in the field of veterinary education and veterinary statutory bodies.

However, substantial disparity still remains among veterinary education establishments (VEEs) across the world regarding the implementation of OIE guidelines and recommendations. Consequently, OIE reaffirmed its commitment to continue assisting its member countries with improving the quality of their veterinary profession in a long-term and sustainable manner.

Diversifying skills

The integration of new skills to veterinary studies that bring additional competencies that are not necessarily from the domain of veterinary science — such as economics, leadership and communication — will be key for meeting a wide range of societal expectations and effectively communicating with various stakeholders, such as animal owners, industries, policy-makers and the general public, OIE said.

Implementing innovative teaching practices

Encouraging VEEs to study and evaluate innovative teaching methods is necessary to provide a wider access to both initial and continuing veterinary education.

Integrate veterinary para-professionals

The global conference further examined the actions to be taken to harmonize and improve the professional training opportunities for veterinary para-professionals working under the responsibility and supervision of veterinarians. The contribution of para-professionals is of high importance in many countries where the number of veterinarians is limited, OIE noted.

Therefore, the conference highlighted the need to establish minimum competencies for these team members and develop guidelines on core training curricula. This issue will be on the OIE agenda in the forthcoming months.

In order to successfully achieve these objectives, closer collaboration among veterinary authorities, veterinary statutory bodies and VEEs is crucial.

“The veterinary profession can greatly contribute to a healthy world, and therefore, our world needs a healthy veterinary profession. Working closely together, veterinary authorities, veterinary statutory bodies and veterinary education establishments need to promote the value of the veterinary profession to society,” OIE director general Dr. Monique Éloit concluded.

N&H TOPLINE: Five ways to reduce calf stress at feedlot receiving

Is the feedlot receiving protocol causing stress, or is it seamlessly transitioning calves and setting them up for future success? The difference between a stressful and a seamless receiving period can have a significant effect on future performance.

“How we receive calves at the feedlot can affect performance throughout the feeding phase,” Chad Zehnder, cattle consultant for Purina Animal Nutrition, said. “The ultimate goal is to get cattle on feed quickly and keep them healthy so that they gain weight efficiently during the receiving period and throughout the rest of their time on feed.”

Zehnder suggested five tips that can help reduce stress in a feedlot receiving protocol:

1. Be prepared. “Have a plan in place for vaccinations, health protocols and feeding programs to help calves hit the ground running,” Zehnder said. “The more information you have on incoming calves, the easier it is to make health and nutrition decisions.”

Which vaccines, if any, have calves received? Have they been dewormed or castrated? What type of feed are they used to? Knowing these answers before cattle arrive can help create a more strategic plan for processing.

A separate plan for preconditioned and newly weaned calves is also beneficial to maximizing a receiving program. With a one-size-fits-all approach, feedlots might be investing unnecessary resources on preconditioned cattle and under-prioritizing high-risk, newly weaned cattle.

2. Reduce stress upon arrival. Transitioning calves from their herd of origin to the feedlot can be highly stressful for the calves, especially for those freshly weaned. Understand the stress levels of incoming calves, and set aside downtime before processing to help make the transition easier for them.

Calves that have traveled long distances may be dehydrated and tired from hours of standing when they arrive at the feedlot. To reduce stress before processing, it’s a good rule of thumb to allow one hour of rest for every hour the calves spent in transport.

Access to a clean, dry environment will also minimize stress and make calves feel at home.

“Proper pen conditions with access to shelter, feed and water are essential to help cattle feel comfortable when arriving at the feedlot,” Zehnder said.

3. Avoid the yo-yo effect. Monitoring feed intake and bunks is important to avoid what Zehnder calls the “yo-yo effect.”

“As calves pick up intake after arrival, we tend to increase feed significantly. We try to get calves to eat more at too quick a pace,” Zehnder explained. “Usually, this leads to calves crashing and going off feed again.”

“This cycle can follow calves throughout the whole feeding phase. It’s important to be consistent and methodical on any deliveries and increases of feed,” he added.

A good rule of thumb is to increase the amount of dry matter by 1 lb. every two to three days. For yearlings and preconditioned calves, this process can take 7-10 days, while freshly weaned calves can take 28-30 days.

4. Focus on fresh feed and feed type. “If calves leave feed in the bunk, they will typically not clean that feed up,” Zehnder said. “It’s likely spoiled, and you need to clear that out and deliver fresh feed.”

The feed delivered is also important. Look for a starter supplement that has appropriate trace mineral fortification, the correct protein makeup and proper feed additives that may help calves stay healthy during respiratory and health challenges.

When delivering a total mixed ration (TMR), it’s important to make sure the diet can’t be sorted. A diet that minimizes sorting results in nutrition that is consistent with every mouthful of feed. If feedstuffs are inadequate or unavailable to make a palatable starter diet, another option is to use a complete feed that can provide consistency and palatability.

5. Don’t forget water. The importance of water shouldn’t be overlooked. Staying hydrated can be a challenge for newly weaned cattle that are not used to automatic waterers.

“Calves will naturally walk the fence line when introduced to a new pen. Placing additional water troughs perpendicular to the fence will help maximize their exposure to water,” Zehnder said. “This strategy can be especially helpful for high-risk calves.”

Letting the water run over for a day or two can also be beneficial for cattle arriving at a feedlot. The sound of running water will help calves find water troughs more quickly. However, allowing water to run over can also result in poor pen conditions, so it’s important to control where the water flows and make every effort to keep the space clean and dry.

West Coast groups meet to consider early contract negotiations

The International Longshore & Warehouse Union (ILWU), which represents about 20,000 dock workers at 29 West Coast ports, will meet Aug. 10-12 in San Francisco, Cal., to decide whether to begin talks now on an extension of its contract with the Pacific Maritime Assn. (PMA), which represents port facilities owners.

The PMA and ILWU signed a five-year contract in early 2015 – retroactive to July 1, 2014 – after protracted labor talks and a nearly four-month work slowdown that negatively affected U.S. exporters.

The U.S. meat and poultry sectors lost an estimated $40 million a week during the slowdown.

In March, the National Pork Producers Council (NPPC) and 112 other trade associations sent a letter to ILWU and PMA urging them to begin early discussions on a contract extension or a new contract.

The groups, representing manufacturers, farmers and agribusinesses, wholesalers, retailers, importers, exporters, distributors, transportation and logistics providers and other supply chain stakeholders, also suggested that the two sides develop a new model — including early and continuous dialogue between the parties — for future negotiations and called on the union and the port association “to avoid actions that would slow, stop or disrupt cargo movement during negotiations.”

According to NPPC, the International Longshoremen’s Assn., representing East Coast and Gulf Coast dock workers, has already held talks on an extension of its current contract, which expires in September 2018.

Soybeans jump after another export sale: Podcast

Soybean futures sped higher on Friday following another big export sale. The U.S. Department of Agriculture this week announced four sales in its daily reporting system for large sales. Two of those sales were to China, and two were to unknown destinations.

Corn futures were about unchanged, and wheat was mixed.

A sharply lower dollar provided some support to crops. A report showing slow growth in the U.S. economy weighed on the greenback.

Bob Burgdorfer of Farm Futures reporting. Farm Futures is a sister publication of Feedstuffs.

 

 

Model calculates age of soil nitrogen

Model calculates age of soil nitrogen

What's good for crops is not always good for the environment. Nitrogen, a key nutrient for plants, can cause problems when it leaches into water supplies.

Now, scientists have developed a model to calculate the age of nitrogen in corn and soybean fields, which could lead to improved fertilizer application techniques to promote crop growth while reducing leaching.

Corn fields in Iowa: Site of NSF's Intensively Managed Landscapes Critical Zone Observatory. Credit: Praveen Kumar.

Researchers Praveen Kumar and Dong Kook Woo of the University of Illinois published their results July 25 in the journal Water Resources Research, a publication of the American Geophysical Union. The National Science Foundation (NSF) supported the research through its Critical Zone Observatory for Intensively Managed Landscapes, one of 10 such zones.

"By understanding how long nitrogen stays in the soil and the factors that drive that, we can improve the precision at which we apply nitrogen for agriculture productivity," Kumar said. "We may be able to apply fertilizer specifically in areas that are deficient in nitrogen in precisely the amount that the plants need to uptake, rather than just applying it uniformly. Potentially, we could see a significant reduction in fertilizer amounts."

Plants take up nitrogen as a nutrient from the soil through their roots. Nitrogen is added to the soil through fertilizer application or by microbes in the soil breaking down organic compounds. However, if the soil contains more nitrogen than the plants need, nitrogen leaches out into the water and can accumulate in lakes, rivers and oceans.

'Overdosing the environment'

"Nitrogen, usually in the form of nitrate fertilizer, is needed for healthy crop production, but too much is not a good thing, since the excess can contaminate water supplies," said Richard Yuretich, program director in the NSF Division of Earth Sciences. "Knowing how long nitrate resides in the soil will lead to more efficient agriculture that maximizes plant health without overdosing the environment."

Kumar and Woo developed a numerical model to calculate how long inorganic nitrogen has been in the soil, using a corn/corn/soybean rotation common in the Midwest.

Fresh fertilizer application or microbial production of nitrates and ammonium are considered "age zero" in the numerical model. From there, the researchers computed age by the chemical reactions or transformations nitrogen goes through in the soil, mediated by moisture, temperature and microbes.

Comparing corn with soybeans

The model revealed two surprising findings when comparing the average age of nitrogen in the topsoil with deeper layers and in comparing corn fields with soybean fields.

"The biggest surprise was that we found a lower average age of nitrogen in soybean fields," Woo said. "We use fertilizer on corn, not soybeans. Yet, even though we count that fresh fertilizer as age zero, we found a lower average age of nitrogen in soybean fields. We found that is mainly because soybeans uptake the old nitrogen, so the average age is reduced."

When looking at the layers of soil, the researchers initially expected that nitrogen would follow a similar age path to water: newer on top, and growing older as it migrates down through the soil. However, they found that the nitrogen in topsoil had a relatively high average age compared with the water. Looking more closely, they realized that one of the forms of nitrogen — ammonium — accumulated in the topsoil.

"Ammonium has a positive charge, which adheres to the soil particles and prevents it from leaching to the deeper layers," Woo said. "Because of that, we observe relatively higher nitrogen age in the upper layers compared with the age of the nitrate that dissolves in water, which doesn't have that barrier and can migrate down through the soil."

Using resources wisely

The researchers have established a field site to validate their model by analyzing the composition of nitrogen, oxygen and water in runoff. They hope their work can help farmers more efficiently use resources while also reducing contamination of water sources and downstream habitats.

"The idea of using age for chemical analysis is not new, but no one has studied nitrogen age in the context of an agricultural setting," Kumar said. "By doing that, we are able to reveal patterns of stagnation in the soil, which is different than just using the concentration of nitrogen. The main idea is that there is a better way to apply fertilizer over a landscape than we do presently. We should be looking into more precise approaches."

Pilgrim's Pride Q2 financial results lower

Pilgrim’s Pride this week reported net revenues for the second quarter of 2016 at $2.03 billion versus $2.05 billion a year ago. This resulted in an adjusted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) of $283 million, or 13.9% margin, versus $426 million a year ago, or 20.7% margin. Net income was $153 million, compared to $241 million in the same period in 2015, while adjusted earnings were 58 cents per share compared to 94 cents per share in the year before.

“During quarter two, our results improved further sequentially compared to the last two quarters, driven by our portfolio strategy of having a well-balanced exposure to different bird sizes and geographical coverage, in conjunction with the diversity of our product and customer mix,” Pilgrim's chief executive officer Bill Lovette said. “We structured this portfolio to allow us to capture strong commodity market value while buffering us from weaker markets to generate lower volatility and higher margins over the mid- to long term. We believe our results this quarter strongly reflect the competitive advantage provided by this portfolio strategy.”

Retail demand for chicken continue to be robust, despite the increased availability of other protein, he said, adding that using chicken remains a compelling solution for foodservice operators in driving greater customer traffic.

“Pricing in the spot market strengthened seasonally, and volumes picked up with reopening of most export markets, helping us to reduce some of the cold storage inventory built up during the last year due to the export bans related to avian influenza,” Lovette explained.

With export demand strengthening and domestic demand remaining solid, Pilgrim’s expects the commodity sector to continue on a positive trajectory during the seasonally stronger part of the year and as warmer weather affects growing conditions.

Pilgrim's announced that it is launching new artisanal chicken sausages from antibiotic-free (ABF), vegetarian-fed poultry to demonstrate its commitment to growing its Prepared Foods operations and to further leverage its leadership in the ABF market. “These products will be fully cooked, minimally processed using all natural and no artificial ingredients or nitrites,” Lovette said.

Similar to Pilgrim’s ABF, vegetarian-fed and organic fresh chicken programs, Lovette said the newly launched sausage product represents the company’s effort to better resonate with new consumer trends for more natural products while adding further value to its portfolio.

Organic production

Lovette said the company’s recent announcement to produce U.S. Department of Agriculture-certified organic chicken is an excellent example of its commitment to partnering with key customers.

“Our team saw creative solutions to satisfy an emerging consumer demand preference, such as organic and (ABF), which will strengthen our relationships with customers and add to our already comprehensive product offering," he said. "We see organic as an opportunity to leverage our leadership in ABF chicken, where we’re already the largest producer, and we expect 25% of our chicken to be ABF by the end of 2018.”

Lovette said Pilgrim's is on track in preparing the conversion of one of its existing big bird facilities to produce organic chicken for retail consumers. The first chicken on the market is expected near the end of the 2017 first quarter.

“We look forward to becoming the leader in this growing differentiated market,” he said, adding that the previously announced conversion project in Mayfield, Ky., is also on schedule.

“We are taking what was previously the largest eight-piece cutout facility in the United States and shifting it to produce an improved mix of higher-margin products to meet the growth of key customers. These projects demonstrate our distinct competitive advantages, and unlike producers with a narrower market focus, we have the exposure to multiple bird sizes and customer segments, which gives us the option and flexibility to align our production capability at the margin with the most profitable customers and markets. Such joint value creation projects give us opportunities to further differentiate our performance over our peers.”

Connecting dots without midyear USDA cattle report

Missing from the slate of late-July cattle reports from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's National Agricultural Statistics Service (NASS) was the July “Cattle” report, which would have provided an indication of continued herd rebuilding, heifer retention and the size of the 2016 calf crop. 

Oklahoma State University Extension livestock marketing specialist Derrell Peel said with the dramatic adjustments in cattle prices in recent months, cattle producers are understandably very concerned about the status of herd rebuilding as they make decisions that will position them for production in 2017 and beyond. 

He said the decision by NASS "to cancel this report this year is a significant disservice to the cattle industry and deprives cattle producers of critical information that will affect them for many months."

In the absence of the midyear inventory report, Peel said other information provides some clues as to the status of herd expansion.

The July “Cattle on Feed” report provided quarterly steer and heifer feedlot inventories. Heifers on feed on July 1 were 4.8% above year-ago levels and indicate — as did the larger April quarterly number — that heifer retention is likely slowing down. Heifer slaughter year to date was down 2.7% but has been growing each month. Heifer slaughter in June was up 4.8% compared to last year — the first year-over-year increase in monthly heifer slaughter since December 2013.

Beef cow slaughter also appears to be accelerating, with the the year-to-date rate up 7.9% from year-ago levels. June beef cow slaughter increased sharply by 20.5% over last year.

“Both heifer and beef cow slaughter will inevitably rise as cattle numbers grow, but the pace in these recent values suggests that herd expansion slowing down,” Peel noted. “Nevertheless, additional beef herd expansion is expected in 2016, albeit at significantly slower pace than 2015.”

The bigger question may be whether herd expansion will continue in 2017, according to Peel. The faster and sharper contraction in cow/calf returns in recent months makes this a smaller prospect than just a few months ago, he said.

“Many evolving demand and supply factors that are currently unknown will determine the trajectory of cattle inventories in the next two or three years,." Peel said. "The cattle industry continues to face tremendous uncertainty, including global dynamics, domestic political chaos and massive market volatility. Unfortunately, the failure of USDA-NASS to provide the July 'Cattle' report adds to the uncertainty about the current situation as well as what is to come.”