Cropland prices in Iowa, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wyoming declined some in the final six months of 2014, while demand for pastureland remained strong. The latest benchmark farm values and sales data tracked by Farm Credit Services of America (FCSAmerica) continue to point to a "soft landing" for farmland after years of price increases.
By Bradley L. Zwilling, Brandy M. Krapf and Dwight D. Raab, University of Illinois
The idea that larger farms have a more efficient cost structure was explored in the July 18, 2014 article. That earlier article looked at some of the variable costs (crop costs and power & equipment costs) that seem to be attention getting when considering economies of scale in farming.
The National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA) recently submitted its third statement in a series of comments to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) concerning a rulemaking that could have broad impacts on futures market performance and hedging efficiency for the grain, feed, processing and export industry.
Oxitec and the Gorgas Institute in Panama announced the result of the outdoor pilot of Oxitec OX513A, an engineered strain of the Aedes aegypti mosquito. The outcome was a reduction of over 90 percent in the local population of the Aedes aegypti mosquito, which transmits the dengue and chikungunya viruses.
In comments submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the American Soybean Association (ASA) disagreed with the conclusions of a recent report from EPA that calls into question the efficacy of neonicotinoid seed treatments in soybean operations.
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack announced that applications are being accepted for millions in grants to facilitate the creation of new, innovative markets for carbon credits, providing additional revenue sources for producers to use to address natural resource conservation challenges. These grants are part of the Conservation Innovation Grant (CIG) program, authorized through the 2014 Farm Bill.