Us Department Of Agriculture News

15 Oct 2019

OP/ED: Farm Facts

AdobeStock / © Igor Strukov

USDA Study Underscores Value of Inland Waterways to U.S. Agriculture.On August 28, U.S. Secretary of Agriculture Sonny Perdue and Assistant Secretary of the Army (ASA) for Civil Works R.D. James toured Mel Price Locks and Dam in Alton, Illinois, and held a Town Hall Meeting to discuss the importance of the waterways,  agriculture and the U.S. economy. At the event, Secretary Perdue briefed agricultural and waterways stakeholders on a newly released study – Importance of Inland Waterways to U.S. Agriculture – from the U.S.

30 Aug 2019

U.S. Agriculture Needs Waterways Upgrades

Image: USDA

U.S. farmers and agribusinesses, as well as the overall U.S. economy and balance of trade, depend upon and benefit from the inland waterways and its infrastructure, which provide the safest, lowest-cost and most environmentally sustainable and fuel-efficient way to move grain and other agricultural products.The National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA) and Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) have commended the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for releasing a significant new study…

29 Aug 2019

USDA Releases Powerful Inland Waterways Study

File Image: WCI

WCI/NGFA Urge NESP Infrastructure Project to Move Forward.The National Grain and Feed Association (NGFA) and Waterways Council, Inc. (WCI) today commended the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) for releasing a significant new study that quantifies the cost-savings and competitive advantages that would accrue from investing in long-delayed improvements to inland waterways locks and dams on the Upper Mississippi and Illinois River system.The study, entitled, Importance of Inland Waterways to U.S.

08 Aug 2019

Baltimore CBP Hits Agriculture Threat Trifecta

The M/V Lyra Leader (Image CREDIT: Baltimore CBP

CBP Intercepts Five Destructive Asian Gypsy Moth Egg Masses on Three Vessels.According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA), Asian Gypsy Moths are one of the most destructive insect pests in the world. They are not known to occur in the United States, yet they are knocking on our doorsteps. Three recent U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) interceptions in Baltimore prove how hard CBP agriculture specialists are working to protect against Asian Gypsy Moths establishing here.On July 19…

13 May 2019

St. Louis Ports, Terminals Tops in Efficiency

Image: St. Louis Regional Freightway.

Now Capture 39 Percent of the Upper Mississippi River Barge Traffic; new data highlights concentration of river terminals, resulting in greater efficiencies and lower costs.The latest data from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) reveals the St. Louis Regional Ports held onto the top ranking as the most efficient inland port district* in the nation in terms of tons moved per river mile during 2017, the most recent year for which final numbers are available. The St. Louis region’s barge industry handled 472,400 tons per mile.

25 Apr 2019

Floods Stall Inland Fertilizer Barge Shipments

Inland waterways with St. louis in the background. (Credit: St. Louis Regional Freightway)

Farm supplier CHS Inc has dozens of loaded barges trapped on the flood-swollen Mississippi River near St. Louis - about 500 miles from the company's two Minnesota distribution hubs.The barges can't move - or get crucial nutrients to corn farmers for the spring planting season - because river locks on the main U.S. artery for grain and fertilizer have been shuttered for weeks. High water presents a hazard for boats, barges and lock equipment.Railroads have also been plagued by delays from winter weather and flooding in the western Midwest…

21 Dec 2018

U.S. Soybean Cargo Unloaded in China

File image: Soy cargo loading (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Igor Strukov

A vessel carrying U.S. soybeans has unloaded its cargo at the port of Qingdao in China on Friday, shipping data showed, amid a trade truce between China and the United States.The Star Laura, originally carrying 69,298 tonnes of soybeans loaded in Seattle, arrived at Qingdao outer anchorage in early November.The vessel's draft is now at 44 percent of its maximum depth, indicating it has emptied its load, data from Refinitive Eikon showed.The ship changed destination to South Korea in early November but came back to the port in eastern Shandong province in December…

10 Oct 2018

Excessive Rain Disrupts US River Barge Shipping

© Henryk Sadura / Adobe Stock

Excessive rains across the central United States over the past week have slowed the harvest of corn and soybeans, while rising water levels closed at least three locks on the Upper Mississippi River, a key artery for shipping Midwest grain to U.S. Gulf exporters.Cash bids for corn shipped by barge to the Gulf firmed on Tuesday, reflecting exporter demand and dwindling pipeline supplies as rising river levels slowed barge traffic.The United States is the world's top corn supplier, and sales of the yellow grain represent one U.S.

22 May 2018

US Sorghum Ship Switches Destination from Spain Back to Asia

© Saydam / MarineTraffic.com

The RB Eden vessel carrying 70,000 tonnes of U.S. sorghum turned around just before reaching the Spanish port of Cartagena and is now heading to Singapore, Thomson Reuters Eikon ship-tracking data showed.This marks the second U-turn for the ship amid a trade tussle between the United States and China. Anti-dumping measures announced by Beijing in mid-April led exporters to divert hundreds of thousands of tonnes of U.S. sorghum. But China dropped its sorghum probe on Friday in what was seen as a goodwill gesture.The RB Eden initially loaded at grain merchant ADM's elevator in Corpus Christi…

11 May 2018

US Sorghum Reaches Spain as Traders Divert More Ships from China

© Trevor Powell / MarineTraffic.com

A rare cargo of U.S. sorghum has arrived in Spain and will be followed by several more, shipping data showed, a sign that Spain's livestock industry is set to become one of the new homes for U.S. sorghum hit by Chinese anti-dumping tariffs.Exporters have been scrambling to divert hundreds of thousands of tonnes of U.S. sorghum bound for China after Beijing announced hefty anti-dumping deposits on the grain in mid-April, part of a simmering trade dispute between the world's two largest economies.Sorghum is mainly used in livestock feed and the fiery Chinese liquor baijiu.U.S.

10 May 2018

Vessels Carrying U.S. Sorghum to China Switch Destinations

Ocean Belt (© M.A.B. / MarineTraffic.com)

Three ships carrying livestock feed grain, sorghum, from the U.S. to China switched their destinations on Thursday to Japan and South Korea, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon ship tracking data, after Beijing hit imports with hefty anti-dumping deposits.The cargoes are among roughly two dozen bought by China but left stranded after Beijing announced last month it would hit U.S. imports with a 178.6 percent deposit on the value of sorghum shipments. The move was part of an anti-dumping probe by China as trade tensions with the U.S.

03 May 2018

Course Change for China-bound U.S. Sorghum Bulker

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Igor Strukov)

A vessel carrying 58,503 tonnes of sorghum from the United States switched its destination from China to South Korea early on Thursday, according to Thomson Reuters Eikon ship tracking data. The Peak Pegasus loaded U.S. sorghum from trader ADM's Corpus Christi grain elevator in Texas and departed on April 3 for Nansha in southern China, according to U.S. Department of Agriculture data. It is now due to arrive in Gunsan in South Korea on May 10, according to the data. The cargo is one of almost two dozen bought by China but now stranded after Beijing said it would impose a hefty deposit on U.S.

30 Apr 2018

U.S. Ethanol Makers Snap Up Cheap Sorghum after China Tariffs

File Image (CREDIT: AdobeStock / © Igor Strukov)

U.S. ethanol makers have joined global livestock producers to snap up discounted American sorghum supplies after buyers in China backed out of deals due to stiff anti-dumping tariffs on the grain imposed by Beijing in a mounting trade dispute. Sorghum is used to feed animals and represents a fraction of the billions of dollars of goods that move between the world's two largest economies. The trade conflict between the United States and China has already hit shipments of agricultural produce and threatens to disrupt the flow of everything from steel to electronics.

24 Apr 2018

China-bound US Sorghum Diverted to Saudi Arabia, Japan

© Eldad Carin / Adobe Stock

Four U.S. sorghum shipments initially bound for China have been diverted to other countries after Beijing's move last week to impose hefty anti-dumping deposits on imports of the grain from the United States, according to trade sources and Reuters shipping data.Three of the cargoes are now sailing for Saudi Arabia after being sold to a private buyer, a U.S. trader and a Middle East-based trading source with knowledge of the matter said Tuesday. A fourth ship is heading to Japan…

06 Apr 2018

Response to Mackinac Spill Continues

U.S. Coast Guard photo by Ensign Pamela Manns

A U.S. Coast Guard marine science technician and an environmental quality analyst for Michigan's Department of Environmental Quality surveyed the Straits of Mackinac onboard a vessel Thursday. The responders did not identify any mineral oil sheens, signs of pollution, or adverse impacts to the environment or wildlife. Earlier this week, hundreds of gallons of mineral oil has been released from a leaking underwater utility line in Michigan’s Straits of Mackinac. Members of the U.S.

16 Mar 2018

Importers Buy U.S. Corn at Record Pace

Dry bulk barges underway on U.S. waterways (Credit: AWO)

Importers are buying U.S. corn at the fastest pace since the mid-1990s, according to U.S. government data, as tightening stocks in Latin America prompt a rush to purchase cargoes of the grain from animal feeders worldwide. A deepening drought in Argentina and limited corn supplies in Brazil, two of the three largest exporters, have opened a window of opportunity for top supplier the United States, which has the largest available surplus for export. The shopping spree comes as a rare bit of good news for U.S.

23 Feb 2018

Flooding Cripples Grain Barge Shipments in U.S. Midwest

CREDIT: MVFCA

Grain barge shipping came to a near standstill in parts of the U.S. Midwest on Thursday as recent heavy rain and melting snow swelled rivers, halted barge loading and sidelined the towboats that haul farm belt crops to Gulf Coast export terminals. The flooded waterways sent cash premiums for corn barges delivered to Gulf Coast terminals soaring. Rates hit peaks on Thursday that have not been seen in 18 months, as exporters scrambled to secure enough grain to top off vessels bound for overseas markets, traders said.

24 Jan 2018

US Soy Cargo to China Traded Using Blockchain

File photo: Louis Dreyfus Co / © David Hundley

A cargo of U.S. soybeans shipped to China has become the first fully-fledged agricultural trade conducted using blockchain, participants said on Monday. Louis Dreyfus Co, Shandong Bohi Industry Co, ING, Societe Generale and ABN Amro took part in the trade where the sales contract, letter of credit and certificates were digitalised on the Easy Trading Connect (ETC) platform. "We noticed very significant efficiency gains ... far beyond what we expected," Robert Serpollet, global head of trade operations at Louis Dreyfus…

24 May 2017

New Orleans Joins Cold Treatment Pilot Program

Photo courtesy of Port of New Orleans

The Port of New Orleans announced a new opportunity for shippers looking to transport perishable cargo from South America. Port NOLA received approval by the U.S. Department of Agriculture for inclusion in the Southeast U.S. In-Transit Cold Treatment Pilot Program. Participation in the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services (APHIS) pilot program means select time-sensitive products can be treated to meet customs compliance in-transit rather than after it arrives to the U.S. – resulting in shorter transit times and increased efficiency for shippers.

10 Feb 2017

Winter Weather Delays Grain Movement to US Ports

Severe winter weather has slowed rail deliveries of crops to shippers in the U.S. Pacific Northwest, sending freight rates soaring and prompting Asian buyers to seek fill-in loads as they wait for the backlog at ports to clear. Blizzards, avalanches and heavy rain in recent weeks have hit transport of corn, soy and wheat to ports where they head for the lucrative Asian market, adding to the struggles that have plagued U.S. exporters since harvest. The setbacks come at a critical time for U.S. exporters, who are trying to move as much grain as possible before buyers turn their attention to South America when corn and soybean harvests in Argentina and Brazil accelerate in the coming weeks.

15 Dec 2016

Asia Dry Bulk-Capesize Rates to Slip Further

File Image: A laden bulk vessel underway (Cedit Norden)

Chartering activity falls as holidays loom; Rio Tinto offering rates 5.5 pct lower than index level. Freight rates for large capesize dry cargo ships on key Asian routes will slide further next week in a lacklustre chartering market ahead of Christmas, ship brokers said. "The market is pretty dead," a Shanghai-based capesize broker said on Thursday, adding that: "It is hard to find the ship owner's person in-charge of chartering. Australian miner Rio Tinto was seen putting pressure on charter rates on Thursday…

17 Oct 2016

Florida's First Ocean-to-Air Transhipment

Innovative programs such as this one also help  business community strengthen ties within the global marketplace Photo Crowley

Already the busiest port of entry in America for international air freight, Miami International Airport will soon be able to receive perishable freight imports by sea as well – a first for any Florida airport – through a permit approved in September by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The first ocean-to-air trans-shipment is expected at MIA before the end of the year. “Congratulations to MIA and Port Miami, our County’s two largest economic engines, on collaborating to generate new revenue and better serve our local cargo industry,” said Miami-Dade County Mayor Carlos A. Gimenez.

23 Sep 2016

Harvest Halts as Rains Douse Midwest, Could Impact Barge Loading

File Image (AWO)

Heavy rains and flooding swamped a broad swathe of the northern Midwest this week, halting the harvest of corn and soybeans and forcing the closure of at least two Iowa crop processing plants, traders and farmers said on Friday. Farmers' concerns grew that standing water in fields could damage unharvested crops, while floodwaters swelled the Mississippi River and threatened to disrupt the loading of export-bound grain barges. Parts of northern Iowa and southern Minnesota received several inches of rain at midweek…

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