CHICAGO (Reuters) – The overall economy may be struggling against a double-dip recession but in farm country the boom times have rarely been better.
Farmland prices are setting records and farmer incomes have been buoyed by exports and biofuels, easing the pain of some rough summer weather from drought, floods and fires.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – Prices for farmland in the heart of the U.S. grain belt were up 17 percent in the second quarter compared to a year ago, the biggest jump since 1977, the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago said on Wednesday.
The rising values were driven by strong crop, livestock and milk prices which spurred farmers and investors to buy land, the bank said. Low interest rates have also boosted demand.
LONDON/CHICAGO (Reuters) – Agribusiness giant Cargill CARG.UL will buy animal feeds producer Provimi from private equity firm Permira for 1.5 billion euros ($2.1 billion), the companies said on Monday.
The acquisition by one of the world’s largest privately owned corporations will solidify Cargill’s dominant position in the animal nutrition business.
CHICAGO, Aug 9 (Reuters) – Giant U.S. agribusiness and
trading firm Cargill Inc [CARG.UL] said earnings fell 7 percent
in its fiscal fourth quarter, hit by volatile energy markets
and weaker risk management and food ingredient results.
Minneapolis-based Cargill, one of the world’s largest
privately held corporations, reported $404 million in earnings
from continuing operations in the quarter ended on May 31,
compared with $435 million a year earlier.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – Agriculture is poised to drive economic growth and job creation led by the dynamic north central region but proposed budget cuts may threaten that outlook, a study by an Ohio-based research firm said.
“Cuts are proposed in forthcoming budgets: cuts that will ripple through a system that leverages federal funding with state and local matching financial support,” Battelle, a Columbus, Ohio, research group, said in the study.
CHICAGO (Reuters) – Rich countries grabbing farmland in Africa to feed their growing populations can leave rural populations there without land or jobs and make the continent’s hunger problem more severe, an environmental think tank said on Tuesday.
The trend is accelerating as wealthier countries in the Middle East and Asia, particularly China, seek new land to plant crops, lacking enough fertile ground to meet their own food needs, Washington DC-based Worldwatch Institute said.
KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Reuters) – Soaring farmland values in the past year are causing worries among agricultural bankers that a farmland “bubble” may be brewing similar to one that triggered the farm crisis of the 1980s.
But the fears are tempered by a healthy agricultural economy. Farmers have used record incomes as commodity prices spiked to reduce debt, upgrade equipment — and buy land.
, July 21 (Reuters) – Soaring U.S. farmland
values in the past year are causing worries among agricultural
bankers that a farmland “bubble” may be brewing similar to one
that triggered the farm crisis of the 1980s.
But the fears are tempered by a healthy U.S. agricultural
economy. Farmers have used record incomes as commodity prices
spiked to reduce debt, upgrade equipment — and buy land.
KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Reuters) – Climate and food production is a subject that needs more study in coming years but for now even the U.S. Agriculture Department finds it almost impossible to estimate the effects of one on the other.
“They are very elaborate models,” said USDA’s chief economist Joseph Glauber, referring to climate-crop forecasting in an interview on Tuesday on the sidelines of a farm lending conference at the Kansas City Federal Reserve.
KANSAS CITY, Missouri (Reuters) – A top Federal Reserve official said on Thursday the U.S. economy should grow at a modest pace for the next several years, but issued a harsh criticism of the U.S. central bank’s just-concluded bond buying program.
“The outlook for the U.S. economy is that we will continue to grow at a modest pace of somewhere between 2.5 (percent), on a good quarter, 3 percent, at least in terms of next year and the year beyond,” said Kansas City Fed President Thomas Hoenig.