November 22, 2014

The Edge on Soy Transportation

Traditionally, the U.S. transportation system that has carried commodities from farm to market has been the best in the world.  The U.S. Soybean Export Council recently commissioned a study that showed America has an advantage over other major suppliers when it comes to filling orders for soybeans and agricultural products.

The study said U.S. soybean shipments usually arrive within 3 days on average of their expected delivery date.  That compares to 7 days on average for Argentina and 15 days for Brazil.  The report indicated that the U.S. has maintained its transportation advantage despite increased traffic and maintenance on the nation’s railway system.

U.S. freight-train speeds are close to the lowest since 2010, and monthly carloads of grain in October fell 5 percent from a year earlier, according to recent Association of American Railroads data.

With had a chance to visit with United Soybean Board Treasurer Jared Hagert from Emerado, North Dakota….

Jared Hagert

In the 2013/2014 marketing year, the United States exported over 2 billion bushels of U.S. soy, valued at more than $30 billion.


thanks to United Soybean Board


Board Welcomes Two New Members

National Biodiesel Board members selected their trade association leadership this week, electing five returning governing board members and two new members to serve in leadership roles.

“Biodiesel has faced many challenges but with strong leadership from among all sectors of the industry we are in a position as an organization to face those challenges head on,” said NBB CEO Joe Jobe. “This industry has produced more than a billion gallons of advanced biofuels each of the last three years and will continue to grow into the future under the direction of the board.”

Officers elected to lead the board are:
Steven J. Levy, chairman, Sprague Operating Resources
Ron Marr, vice chair, Minnesota Soybean Processors
Mike Cunningham, treasurer, American Soybean Association
Greg Anderson, secretary, Nebraska Soybean Board

NBB members also voted to fill seven board member spots. Members elected to the Governing Board included officers Steven J. Levy, Greg Anderson, and Mike Cunningham along with:
Jennifer Case, New Leaf Biofuel
Tim Keaveney, HERO BX
Robert Morton, Newport Biodiesel
Ben Wootton, World Energy

Ron Marr, Gary Haer, Todd Ellis, Kent Engelbrecht, Ed Hegland, Bob Metz, Robert Stobaugh, and Ed Ulch also continue to serve on the Governing Board.


Increase in FSA Microloan Limits

South Dakota Farm Service Agency State Executive Director Craig Schaunaman reminds farmers and ranchers that the FSA borrowing limit for microloans increased today from $35,000 to $50,000. Microloans offer borrowers simplified lending with less paperwork.  Schaunaman said it makes borrowing from FSA a “first opportunity” to farm or ranch or quickly expand existing operations.

“This will help more people because of new flexibilities created by the 2014 Farm Bill,” Schaunaman said. “We’re especially excited in South Dakota, because we want to encourage more beginners and young people, especially those from historically underserved communities, to consider farming and ranching as a way to become independent businessmen and women. It’s a rewarding way to build or expand a family operation.”

The microloan change allows beginning, small and mid-sized farmers to access an additional $15,000 in loans using a simplified application process with up to seven years to repay.

Since 2010, FSA has made a record amount of farm loans – more than 165,000 loans totaling nearly $23 billion. More than 50 percent of USDA’s farm loans now go to beginning farmers.